June Pinion, the Sequel
In my May Pinion, I said my final 2 articles would be presented in two parts. In writing this last article, I think I need a 3rd Pinion to convey both my thoughts on my year as well as my deep appreciation to the members the best club in the Rotary world. As many past presidents have experienced, a President really starts getting his or her “Rotary legs” in the second half of their year as president. Mine was no exception. In starting to plan my year (pre-pandemic) I was told that this would be my best year in Rotary. Facing down Covid, I somehow doubted that would be the case. Yet, it has been my best year….because of YOU- the Niles Rotary member. Your dedication and generosity via your time, talent, and treasure has made both our community and our world a better place. You’ve embraced our meetertainment concept, accepted a dues increase that has yet to fully play out as we enter president-elect Audrey’s year with a degree of uncertainty as to when we will return to Washington West. Club finances remain somewhat fluid as Audrey’s board will face the decision of how we will move forward as we resume our live meetings.
In the time I have remaining, I hope to adequately share with each and every one of you how important you are in not only Niles Rotary but also the Rotary world. I think of the Rotary wheel, and each cog in that wheel. If one of those cogs is missing, the wheel fails to move. I hope this simple analogy conveys how important each and every Niles Rotarian is to the club as a whole.
With the weekly meetings I have remaining, I’m hoping to convey what went on behind the scenes to deliver what we now have coined our meetertainment meeting. In doing so, I hope to acknowledge the hard work that various individuals have put forth to deliver a different Rotary meeting experience. In a way, the pandemic has been a blessing, as it’s opened our eyes to new ways we can “do Rotary.” Rotary International president Holger Knaack urged Rotarians to be more flexible, thinking of new ways to build membership in Rotary. It is my hope that through the pandemic experience and what a phenomenal group of individuals has crafted insofar as our meetings have given us is a hint as to what Rotary will look like going forward. I’m excited at the prospect of having helped lay the foundation of change that will carry us into the future. A future where we will see membership grow in President-elect Audrey’s year .
Adequately thanking this club for making a challenging year successful has caused me some anxiety. I don’t want to forget anyone who has contributed to a successful year. As mentioned above, each Rotarian is a cog in the wheel and each Rotarian is important to this club’s success. This said, some have gone beyond the call, and I will acknowledge and thank them in the meetings I have remaining…in true “meetertainment” fashion!
As I close what is the last Pinion article of my presidency- I would be remiss if I did not thank Sandi Pantages. This is also her last Pinion after many years of being its editor. More will be said of that in true meetertainment fashion- make sure you tune into the June 3rd meeting!
Lastly, I reflect back on my August 2020 Pinion article where I spoke of our club maintaining relevance. I asked how we were doing in our efforts to engage millennials and the diversity in our community. I believe that we’ve set the stage for a Niles Rotary future that will engage a new and diverse membership. Rotary will never be quite the same, yet I maintain optimism that Niles Rotary will maintain the fellowship that is a hallmark of our club while engaging existing and new Niles Rotarians in different ways. To this end, I ask you to continue to be open minded as to how we might continue to “fold in” our new way of doing Rotary into our traditional Niles Rotary fabric while maintaining that which we value so much as Niles Rotarians.
Keep on Blooming!