Rotary President Passes Gavel
Bay City Rotary begins new year with Mike Stoner as President
July 9, 2004
By: Stephen Kent
Rob Monroe (left) passes gavel to Mike StonerPhoto: Andy Rogers
Outgoing President Rob Monroe passed the gavel to incoming President Mike Stoner at Tuesday's meeting, July 6. Stoner was presented with the President's pin and Monroe was given the coveted Past President's pin.
Outgoing District Governor Jerome Yantz, of the Bay City Club, presented an award to the club and to President Monroe. In his remarks, Yantz commented that he's traveled thousands of miles to hundreds of Rotary meetings during his year as Governor. He's attended a number of presidential transistions. The longest took about three hours. He was confident that the Bay City ceremony could be the shortest.
Following the routine club business for the day, Stoner addressed the club with plans, goals and challenges for the upcoming Rotary International Centinenial Year. Among Stoner's remarks:
- Membership: As a challenge to all members, Stoner asked that, during this Centennial Year, every club member bring at least one guest to lunch. If that guest expresses an interest in Rotary, invite them a second time, then a third time. If all members bring one person during the year, exposing these people to Rotary, membership will take care of itself.
- Attendance: In reviewing club history, Stoner noted that attendance has been an issue over many years. Overall club attendance often averages under 60%. While the club has many, many members with very good attendance, some members attend infrequently. Former Rotary International President Cliff Dochterman has said that every new president ought to challenge club members to consider this: "There is a big difference between being a member of a Rotary Club and being a Rotarian."
As an avenue for participation, Stoner challengedmembers to visit the new on-line Rotary club once a month. Chartered January 2002 as Rotary's first Internet-based club, Rotary eClub One of District 5450 at ( www.RotaryEclubOne.org) exists to serve Rotarians with special needs, including those who cannot maintain attendance at regular club meetings because of extensive business commitments and travel, health problems, or geographical isolation from existing clubs.
- New member involvement: Stoner noted that the club sometimes loses new members because they are not provided with avenues for getting involved early.
His challenge to new members: All members who have been in the club for less than one year are asked to sit together at the front/center table (birthday table) once a month to get to know one another better.
Secondly, new members will be given a project to get them involved. Rotary founder Paul Harris said it was his practice, when hosting visitors from foreign countries, to ask them to plant a tree near his home in what eventually became his "friendship garden". The project suggested for current new member "class" is to find a location for a club sponsored "friendship garden" wheretrees will be planted by all future Group Study Exchange [GSE] teams which visit Bay City. This will be done in conjunction with the Bay City Morning Club
- Rotary Foundation Giving The International challenge from Rotary is "Every Rotarian Every Year $100." Stoner's challenge is simply that every club member make a donation to the Rotary Foundation, regardless of the amount. It doesn't matter how much someone gives. If everyone gives something, the dollars will take care ofthemselves.
Stoner proposed that at one meeting per month the winner of the 50/50 drawing will have the entire amount, including club's share, contributed in the winner's name to the Rotary Foundation to be put towards a Paul Harris Fellow.
Additionally, following the induction of every new member, the club will make a $100 contribution in the member's name to the Rotary Foundation to be put towards a Paul Harris Fellow. The new member will automatically receive credit from RI forthe annual giving goal.
- Literacy: Incoming International President Glen Estes has set literacy as one of his goals. Stoner challenged club members participate in the Chamber of Commerce's "Reading is Bay County's Business" program which sends adults into schools to read to children. Stoner encouraged a team approach with a younger members invitint an older member of the club to accompany him or her on a reading adventure.
Additionally, where in the past the club has sometimes presented a coffee cup or pen to guest speakers, the club will now make a $10 contribution to "Reading is Bay County's Business" in the name of the speaker.
- Family of Rotary: This year, the club will schedule a minimum of six and as many as tem "10 Minute Rotarian" programs, to be coordinated by the club's Family of Rotary Committee. Each program will have three parts, with one long-time member and one fairly new member doing a presentation, and ending with a presentation by a former club president, highlighting that president's Rotary year. Family and friends of speakers will be invited to attend these programs.
- Club Projects: Our club does a very good job of doing projects, both large and small, but club member participation islimited. The challenge to all members is to work at leastonce during the centennial year on a club project. This could involveclean-up of the Riverwalk, helping to host the annual golf outing, doing a job as part of the International Night fundraiser, hosting a GSE team visitor for a day.
Former Rotary International President Cliff Dochterman has said: "If it isn't "hands on" it isn't Rotary." This is an opportunity to dosomething "hands on."
Of passing interest
: A "happy buck" was paid by member Harry Farris who noted that, at a recent visit to his dentist, he was informed that he needed a crown, which cost $600. Farris said he told the dentist that, being a Scotsman who didn't like to part with his loose change, and being well into his senior years, he wanted to know if the dentist would guarantee that he, Farris, would live ten years to get his money's worth. The dentist replied that he would. Farris was happy to report to the club that he has a guarantee to be around another ten years.
- July 13 - 10 Minute Rotarians, Past President Tom Tabor;
- July 20 - Der Bass, Group Study Exchange outbound team to Denmark;
- July 27 - Club Assembly/Membership/Deb Wieland;
The Hratch Factor: Hratch Basmadjian takes home the prize again with his "Hratch Factor" stratregy.
Dave Rogers answers questions about the Madison Avenue Masonic Temple at last week's Rotary meeting.
- Aug. 3 - Bob Chadwick: Employing the Disabled;
- Aug. 10, Michael Seward, Bay Area Chamber of Commerce, proposed minor league baseball team;
- Aug. 17, PamClifford, Reading is Bay County's Business;
- Aug. 24 - 10 Minute Rotarians, Former President Harry Farris; Rob Clark sells his desk, auction.
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