Pearl Rotarians found themselves on a mutual attraction date when they met the Rotary District 5100 Governor on Aug. 13.
Governor Diane Noriega, serving for this 2019-20 year, was impressed with a number of club characteristics. She congratulated the Rotarians on having 100 percent membership in the Paul Harris Fellows, an honor for financial donors that is typically achieved by only about 20 percent of chapters.
She described the Tuesday morning group at EcoTrust Building as having “good personal relationships”. She noted, “We like each other; we are fun to be with.” She complimented Pearl Rotary as “a growing club, bringing in new members. Your stats are great.”
Diane told the audience that four characteristics are found in the strongest Rotary chapters. First, is brand or public image. The club must be known for making community contributions and respected for its service. Second, Diane said, the chapter must be well-organized enough to make tangible donations to community life. This involves not only pledging money but also successfully exploring various sources for more money. Third, according to Diane, the group must be a “member organization. We are the ones who make it happen.” Fourth, Diane reported, is successfully developing club leaders through leadership academies and apprenticeships with already strong leaders.
The District 5100 president visits each of the individual chapters, located in Northern Oregon and Southwestern Washington, in the year of her presidency. Diane brings outstanding qualification to the job. She spent over 25 years in higher education serving as a professor of Education, Dean of Education, Provost and ultimately Interim President before retiring in 2009. She was recently elected by the public to the board of the Mt. Hood Community College. Diane was accompanied on her visit by Jim Boyle, Rotary District president-elect, and Chris Ackerman, Assistant District Governor.
Chris presented special District awards to Anne O’Neill and Seth Gardner for their numerous contributions to the Pearl Chapter in terms of service to others. Among other contributions, Anne is well-known for her work as the International chair during Taylor Stevenson's highly successful Pune, India waste-picker project, in addition to her engagment on the community service and social justice committees. Seth is a major contributor to Pearl organizations and a faithful photographer and excellent host of the annual Pearl Oscar's night (February, hasn't been the same since).
Diane included herself, Anne, and Seth in her description of “Rotary as family. I have done all the service projects; it makes you feel so good. I am a Rotarian; this is my purpose and passion” (phtos courtesy of Seth Gardner and text from Pete Guest).