2015 marks 90th anniversary of club that values “service above self.”
This past year – 2015 – marks the 90th anniversary of the Wellsboro Rotary Club. This group of men & women has impacted our community immeasurably over their 90 years of service, and in today’s feature we meet some of their members and find out what makes Rotary so special.
Rotary as an organization is made up of three parts: clubs, Rotary International and the Rotary foundation.
“Rotary clubs bring together dedicated individuals to exchange ideas, build relationships, and take action. Rotary International supports Rotary clubs worldwide by coordinating global programs, campaigns, and initiatives. The Rotary Foundation uses generous donations to fund projects by Rotarians and our partners in communities around the world. As a nonprofit, all of the Foundation’s funding comes from voluntary contributions made by Rotarians and friends who share our vision of a better world.” – Rotary.org
Everything Rotary does, from personal to professional relationships and decisions is considered and evaluated by a nonpartisan and nonsectarian ethical guide called the Four-Way Test, which asks four questions:
1. Is it the TRUTH?
2. Is it FAIR to all concerned?
3. Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?
“We’re using this as a litmus test, as a judge for our behaviors, for our projects, for our fundraisers so that we know we’re on solid ethical grounding of what we’re doing.” states Rotary District Governor, Barbara Belon.
The Wellsboro Rotary club sponsors, hosts and contributes to many events and activities in our area, including (but not limited to) the Wellsboro Little League, the Laurel Festival, the exchange student program, The Deane Center, Wellsboro Concert Association, the American Red Cross, the Wellsboro Volunteer Fire Department, and the Green Free Public library. “One of the biggest things they do,” says Rotarian Dick Ford, “is they donate money to various organizations. I think, since I’ve been a rotarian, they’ve collected $200,000-300,000. And it’s been passed on to various organizations and people.”
However, what really makes Rotary special is the people and their investment in others. The exchange student program is one of their most notable services. “You can visit a country or travel any number of places, but it’s just a world of difference when you’re living in a home with someone,” says Rotarian Richard Black, “That’s where you really get a true experience.” Mr. Black not only heads-up the exchange program – he has hosted a number of students and has had two of his own children participate in the program. This past year Mr. Black hosted Brieux Thibaut, a student from Belgium. “I’ve really enjoyed it. It was a great year, one of the best of my life.” says Thibaut. “I will never forget the people I met here. They will be what I miss the most.”
Time is a precious commodity and the Wellsboro Rotarians give theirs for the betterment of our community on a daily basis. “I like having the opportunity to work with people who are community minded,” says Rotarian Maria Spencer. “I have time to give and there is no better way than to help out with Rotary.” From roadside cleanups to fundraisers to event setups and more, Rotarians are always volunteering their time to help others.
On January 8th of this year, Rotarian and State Representative Matt Baker presented a congratulatory citation from the PA House of Representatives to the Wellsboro Rotary club. The citation reads as follows:
“Whereas, The House of Representatives of Pennsylvania takes great pleasure in recognizing those organizations which contribute to the benefit of their communities and ultimately to all the citizens of this Commonwealth; and
Whereas, The Rotary Club of Wellsboro is being Honored upon the celebration of its ninetieth anniversary; and
Whereas The Rotary Club of Wellsboro was chartered by Rotary International on January 20, 1925. In addition to sponsoring students to study abroad, the club has contributed to numerous organization in the community, including the Deane Center, the Community Concert Association, Little League baseball, the American Red Cross, the Wellsboro Volunteer Fire Department, the Green Free Public Library and the annual Laurel Festival. The Rotary Club of Wellsboro has also encouraged the growth and support of the youth of Wellsboro by awarding prizes and grants to students for their scholastic and extracurricular achievements. Throughout its history, the Rotary Club of Wellsboro has made inestimable contributions to the welfare of society through a sense of fellowship through its programs, which are designed to enhance the quality of life for all. A succession of dedicated leaders and members has made this possible, keeping ever mindful of the noble maxims if the organization.
Now therefore, the House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania congratulates the Rotary Club of Wellsboro upon its well-deserved recognition; offers best wishes for continued growth and success in the years to come;
And directs that a copy of this citation, sponsored by the Honorable Matthew E. Baker on December 29, 2014, be transmitted to the Rotary Club of Wellsboro, PO Box 961, Wellsboro, Pennsylvania 16901”
Home Page would like to thank Wellsboro Rotary for all they’ve done for our community – the hearts they’ve touched and the lives they’ve changed will forever be appreciated.