The Joseph A. Caulder Collection
Past Rotary International Director 1928-29   -  Regina, Sask., Canada

"Eyewitness to Rotary International's First 50 Years"


JOSEPH A. CAULDER - An eyewitness to Rotary International's first 50 years.

Rotary Information Book 4

[Page A-1 through D-10]           [Pages E-1 through M-14]          [Pages W-1 through End]

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Lake Placid Club, N.Y.,U.S.A.

24 MAY - I JUNE, 1954

President Joaquin has asked me to endeavor to outline to you the thinking of Paul Harris which led to the organizing of The Chicago Rotary Club in 1905 and to the founding of the Rotary movement.

None of us here today was a companion of Paul prior to the organization of the first Rotary club but from his autobiographical story and from the sort of man we found him to be, as we came to know him after 1905, we can endeavor to draw our conclusions as to what must have been the type of his thoughts prior to 1905. In the few minutes of time allotted I am presenting my conclusions.

Most certainly Paul made no claim and had no thought that he had received any special inspiration to found a Rotary or any other sort of club, nor did he seek to commercialize on the Rotary club idea by securing from it a financial return for himself or any one else.

Before Paul left us seven years ago he indicated two thoughts in his mind and they are the basis of this outline.

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One was that in 1905 he had planted in Chicago a sapling which to his astonishment and joy had grown into a forest of trees.

The other was that during the first thirty-odd years of his life he had been traveling a road which, without his realising it, had been preparing him for the planting of that sapling.

Evidently along that road he had done a good deal of thinking as a boy, a youth, a man. Undoubtedly he was a normal but inquisitive child always wanting to know the "Why" of things, including the necessity of his father having to take him from his birthplace in Racine, Wisconsin, to a (to him) strange faraway place where he was turned over to a strange elderly couple - his grandparents.

One’s thinking is influenced by one’s environment and by one’s association with other people.

In Wallingford, Vermont, Paul lived in a household of affection and responsibility in a village of neighborly people noted for such simple virtues as industry frugality, tolerance, equality of opportunity, the benefit of education available to all so that all

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might have a voice in governmental affairs, among people who were conservative but concerned about and disposed to be helpful to their neighbors. He made contacts with people and found out why they were doing whatever they were doing.

The growing boy's thinking was influenced by the thoughts pf his grandparents and their neighbors, including an old Irish gardener who was something of a philosopher, his uncle George Fox - a country doctor more interested in serving people than in collecting his accounts, old Judge Button who in dispensing justice knew how to separate the wheat from the chaff, and many others.

He roamed the village with his "Why?" and wondered about buildings and shops and the people in them. He wondered about birds and animals, but most of all about people. As he grew older he explored woods and brooks and hills and mountainsides and wondered about all he saw.

He attended the Congregational Church and wondered about the other churches – the denominational separations. He thought how simple things would be if all the good people were in the churches and all the bad people were outside of them.

It was evident that he was a keen observer of people and of things animate

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and inanimate. Otherwise six or seven decades later he would not have been able to recall and recite his experiences for us in such detail as we find in his book, "My Road to Rotary", written shortly before his death.

Incidentally we can read this book as merely a description of life in New England or, if we wish, we can study it as the development of a boy into a man who was destined to leave his footprints on the sands of time.

He manifested qualities of leadership among his boyhood companions as they planned and participated in their adventures including many mischievous pranks, some of which caused interruptions in his academic and collegiate career.

What this young man's thoughts were may be indicated by the books he read. One could not associate with such writers as Lowell, Whittier, Thoreau, Whitman, Dickens, Thackeray and Scott and not have his thinking influenced. Needless to say he was not an addict to the comic strip.

In the schools he attended – public school, academies, University of Vermont and Princeton University he carried his inquiring mind and his interest in people.

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He learned something about the work of his grandfather as a farmer and local merchant. A period of work in the office of the Marble Company in nearby Rutland gave him an opportunity to study and think about business procedures and relations.

Perhaps a guiding precept for his mature life is found in the farewell advice of his grandmother after his grandfather's death when the young man was setting out for the West. In substance the admonition was: You owe much to others, Paul. Now you are on your own. Work hard and live honorably.

En route to the study at law at the University of Iowa, Paul tarried a few days in Chicago where he found a great contrast from his peaceful and neighborly New England village. However the energy and bustle, the extremes of culture and crime in this maelstrom of humanity had a fascination for him which was bound to bring him back a few year's later.

His law studies tended to rationalize his thinking but above all he was concerned with the ways of men - why they behaved as they did; what were the underlying motives which influenced the lives of men; why men were wasteful of their physical, mental and moral resources; why some were good, some bad; why some made

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sacrifices and were they worthwhile. Was there something valuable in his grandfather's and grandmother's precepts or were they a couple of well-meaning but deluded old fogies?

As he read more and more about other countries he wondered why the branches of mankind differ so much in their ways of life - even in their ways of thinking.

This young nature lover, this youthful philosopher was not disposed to be a recluse. He has explored Vermont mountains. He wanted to climb higher ones. Before he undertook to practice law he wanted more experiences

He was ready to do a unique thing for a graduate in law. Although his financial resources were very limited he decided on five years of travel, earning his way as he went, in order to familiarize himself with the ways of men not only throughout the United States but in as many other countries as he could reach.

The mere recital of his travels indicates their opportunities for thinking and reflection by an in-

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Up through the Rockies to the Pacific Northwest, down to California, around to Denver, Colorado, was his first swing.

On his five years of "vagabondage" as he has called it he made some life-long friends, but at first his companions were mostly ordinary people, newspaper reporters, ranch workers, cowboys, fruit packers, play actors but whoever they were he was one of them.

From Denver he jumped to Jacksonville, Florida, where he met and made a friend of Mr. George W. Clark who was in the marble and granite business. After working for a time for Mr. Clark and being a welcome visitor in his home Paul was off to Washington for the inauguration of President Cleveland and some newspaper work there.

Next a hitch with another marble and granite company travelling through Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia and Virginia.

Then two tough experiences as a deckhand on cattleships to London and Liverpool with some limited opportunities to explore England and Wales.

Back from the second trip in time for a visit to the 1893 Columbian Exposition in Chicago, where he was

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inspired as were so many others by the beautiful grounds and buildings and wonderful exhibits from all over the world.

Then to Louisiana and adventures there and a visit to historic and romantic New Orleans.

Again in Jacksonville, with Clark, traveling through the Southern States and to Cuba and The Bahamas.

And then to Europe as the accredited representative of the Clark Company with travel in France, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Germany, Holland, Belgium, and England and Scotland.

What an experience all this traveling must have been for a young man in his 20's and what an opportunity his inquiring mind had to study men and their activities, and to find many who were moved by altruistic impulses.

He returned to Jacksonville only to say good-bye. The five years of his "vagabondage" were up, and that wicked, turbulent, marvelous city of Chicago was calling the "vagabond" to settle down to the practice of law.

When. Clark urged him to stay in Jacksonville saying: "You'll make more money if you remain with me", Paul replied: "I am sure you are

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right about that but I'm not going to Chicago to make money but to live a life."

(Incidentally Clark, a dozen years later, organized the Rotary Club of Jacksonville.)

Many years went by in Chicago - difficult years - war time - depression years - business a fierce competitive struggle - too many lawyers (not all ethical). Perhaps the ambition to be a money-making lawyer was lacking but without money or influential connections it was not easy to have desirable friends. With no family there were lonesome week-ends and a longing for the warm friendship in the homes of his grandparents in Wallingford and of the Clarks in Jacksonville.

Not yet any vision of a world fellowship of business and professional men, but something was tugging at his sleeve urging him to do something about his situation. He knew that there must be a way to make friends in a big city. He felt certain there were many young business men in Chicago who had come from villages and farms and who were in need of friendship.

One evening in suburban Rogers Park where be accompanied his host as he visited various places of local business, Paul saw a similarity to his

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New England village - men of different occupations - why riot a group or circle or club composed on the basis of one man of each line of business or profession? Why couldn't they be real friends -interested in and helpful to each other?

He kept turning the idea over in his mind for a long time before coming to grips with it, but finally he decided to start his club and with the help of Silvester Schiele, Harry Ruggles and others he did so.

To make it attractive he had as its first object the promotion of the business interests of its members and as its second object fellowship. In connection with the promotion of business interests the emphasis fortunately was not on what you could get but on what you could do for some one else - by patronizing him if you could, recommending your friends to him, giving him helpful advice about getting; more business, etc. All this Paul encouraged but it was the fellowship object that had the strongest appeal to him.

How he was meeting men of different occupations in a free and informal manner and, as he had done in his New England village and in his

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years of travel, he was finding out what they were doing and why they were doing it.

And as Rotary fellowship ripened into Rotary friendships he found opportunities for the expression of the mischievous spirit of the boy he had left in Wallingford. Among the Rotarians he was again a ringleader in pranks, frolics, practical jokes.

However, his thought about the possibilities of the club developed from day to day and he was receptive to the ideas of other members and willing to pick up and join in implementing their ideas. For example when someone suggested that, while as individuals they were trying to be helpful to one another in an unselfish way, as a group they were self-centered with no apparent regard for others in the city in which they were living and making their living, he was quick to see the point and joined in the development of a civic or community service object for the club.

Well, here we are at the founding of the first Rotary club – the planting of that sapling in Chicago. We have hurriedly retraced the road Paul Harris had traveled which prepared him for the conception of such a club, but it had also prepared him for something else and that was Rotary International. Probably we

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shall conclude that it was for the development of the Rotary movement that Paul's road really prepared him, with the founding of its first club as merely a preliminary step to the greater thing.

What were Paul's thoughts that led to the organization of other Rotary clubs and their evolution into a world-wide movement? That is another story which will require another ten minutes on some other occasion to cover the period say from 1908, when the second club came into existence, to 1912 when Paul retired as President of' Rotary International.

Thank you.

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  1. Cultivate the habit of always looking on the bright side of every experience.
  2. Accept cheerfully the place in life that is yours, believing that it is the best possible place for you.
  3. Throw your whole soul and spirit into your work and do it the best way you know how.
  4. Get into the habit of doing bits of kindness and courtesies to all those who touch your life each day.
  5. Adopt and maintain a simple, childlike attitude of confidence and trust in God as your own father.

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by Chesley Perry

November, 1958

Mr. Louis L. Roth, Chairman

Committee on Legislative Procedure of R.I.

St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.A.

Dear Lou:

Responsive to the invitation to do so, I herewith offer my suggestions for the consideration of your Committee, with my regret that I have not been able to make them more concise. When President Randall recently suggested "bold new concepts in service" and "meeting new needs in new settings", he received requests that he explain what he meant by such suggestions. In connection with my suggestions, I shall go into considerable detail, to make fully clear what I am trying to suggest.

Rather than proposing any change in the present form of procedure, my suggestions will be as to the manner in which the present form can be made to work out with satisfaction to all concerned; and in doing so give Clubs and Rotarians a better understanding of, and a keener interest in, the administration of Rotary International and its member Clubs, which will lead to their more effective participation

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in the achievement of the Object of Rotary.

The likelihood of the minds of Rotarians of various countries meeting on the subject o£ legislative procedure, will be enhanced if they find that they are agreed as to the basic structural character of Rotary International (the Association of Rotary Clubs).

So first of all, I submit the following statement which (I believe it is safe to say) represents the thinking and conclusions of a considerable number of, if not all, Rotarians. If there are other thoughts and conclusions on the subject among Rotarians, immediate steps should be taken to determine, in a democratic manner, what is the correct and accepted structural character of the Association.


The Rotary Movement is a self-governing democratic fellowship of business and professional men, who have first grouped themselves into local autonomous Rotary Clubs, and second united their Clubs in an Association (Rotary International) for the purpose of encouraging, promoting, extending and supervising the Rotary

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Movement throughout the world and of coordinating and generally directing its activities as an Association of Rotary Clubs.

In 1910 there were 16 such local autonomous independent Clubs. They sent their Delegates to a Convention of their Clubs, at which an Association was founded. Subsequently, thousands of similar groups of men became member Clubs of the Association, with the same rights, duties, obligations and responsibilities as those of the founding Clubs.

The sovereignty of the Associated Clubs is specially manifest in the meetings of their delegates in Convention and of their representatives on the Council on Legislation at the Convention. Rotary International is then in session.

The Rotarians of each Club elect Delegates from their Clubs to meet in Convention and participate in enacting laws and establishing policies for the government and operation of the Association.

The Clubs of each District, by vote of their electors at District Conferences, elect their representatives on the Council on Legislation to be an advisory body to the Delegates in Convention as to their action on proposed enactments and resolutions. (There are also some ex-officio and

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some appointive members of the Council.)

Over the years various agencies of service to the Associated Clubs have been created, by decision of their Delegates in Convention, to implement, execute and carry into effect (with the cooperation of the Clubs) the laws and policies the Clubs have enacted and established.

Among such agencies of service to the Clubs are:

A President

A Board of Directors

Vice Presidents

General Secretary and Staff


Governors of Districts

Area Administrations

Various Committees

A Foundation

All such agencies in their respective fields of activity will assist, encourage, counsel and guide the Clubs in implementing the programs the Clubs have agreed upon; and the

Clubs must be responsive to and cooperative with such leadership.

Directly or indirectly the Association Clubs elect or appoint individual Rotarians to constitute for certain periods of time the personnel

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of all agencies of the Association.

Such Rotarians serve as representatives of the Associated Clubs in their performances of the acts and duties pertaining to the administration of the executive function.

A Rotarian who accents office or appointment in the administration of the Association is merely on loan from his Club for the period of time required for such service, and retains his primary responsibility of service in and through his Club.

Whatever power or authority the Associated Clubs have given or appear to have given to any agency is always subject to review, amendment, revision and revocation by the Associated Clubs.

Whatever may the wording of any law or policy adopted at any time by the Associated Clubs, there never has been any intention on their part to divest themselves of their basic control of the Association.


While the necessity or the advisability of making a change may always be considered, an established form of procedure should not be discarded merely for the sake of making a change.

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If a change in R. I. Legislative procedure ever has to be made, great care should be taken to make certain that the new procedure is unquestionably better than the old one, and that in making the change nothing of primary importance is lost.

For democracy to operate successfully in an organization, there must be voluntary and constructive participation by all concerned in implementing it.

Stated democratic procedure does not work by automation. Especially in larger groupings, it must be planned for and guided in action. This can be done in a manner which either will encourage and foster democratic interest and participation or by neglect or in some other way will discourage democratic interest and participation.

If the present form of legislative procedure is not working well, the fault may be due to a considerable extent to the manner in which we are trying to implement it.

The present legislative procedure of Rotary could be implemented in a manner which will serve to bring member Clubs, the R. I. Board, Secretariat and magazines, District Governors, Committees, Delegates in Convention and Representatives on the

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Council on Legislation into effective cooperation in proposing, considering, and enacting legislation. This will require educational work (especially among the member Clubs and their Rotarians) which in a few years will insure their interest and participation in legislation.


Submitting to the Convention via the Secretariat Proposals to amend the R. I. Constitution and By-laws and the prescribed Rotary Club Constitution, is the first step in R. I. legislation. Obviously the more numerous the Proposals submitted are, at the stated time for them, the less attention is likely to be given to the merits of each Proposal within the period of time available for the consideration of all the Proposals.

Therefore all bodies authorized to submit Proposals should be encouraged to refrain from submitting any Proposal unless the submitting of it at the moment seems very important.

It is desirable that Clubs should develop and submit ideas for the advancement of the Rotary Movement, and the betterment of the operation of Rotary International and its member Clubs; but so far as possible such ideas should be implemented, if feasible, without the need of amending the

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constitutional documents.

A club contemplating the submission of a Proposal should confer with the R. I. Secretariat as to the need or timeliness of such a Proposal and to check the correct legalistic wording of it for Convention action, in doing so the Club may find that what it is seeking to achieve may be accomplished without the need of Convention legislation.

However the Club might also confer, as to the merits and necessity of the contemplated Proposal, with other Clubs of its District or with other Clubs of similar size or situation.

A preliminary or exploratory communication from a Club contemplating the making of a Proposal, might be printed in the magazines of R. I. and result in the Club receiving from other Clubs communications in support of, or in opposition to, the contemplated Proposal, or helpful suggestions in regard to it.

The next step is the transmitting of a duly filed Proposal to all other Rotary Clubs, which the General Secretary has to do. This should be done in a manner which will encourage the examination of it at a Club meeting with a conclusion as to whether it should be supported or opposed by the Club's Delegate(s) at the Convention.

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The booklet of Proposals which has been used for so many years for the transmitting of Proposals to the Clubs should be revised in style. It should comprise three sections:

(a) A Foreword directing attention of Club officers to the fact that 19--is a legislative year in Rotary International, and that it is a privilege and the duty of each Club to examine each Proposal and determine the conclusion of the Club as to it for the information of its Delegate(s) in Convention.

This foreword also should include an outline of the conduct of a Club meeting devoted to the examination of Proposals, the preparation by the President or some one else qualified to serve as Moderator of such a program; the use of the digested statements giving the substance of each Proposal; and the recording by the Secretary of the conclusions reached by the Club. Emphasis should be given to the probable need of more than one meeting if the Proposals are numerous.

Such programs at Club meetings every other year can be very interesting and educational to the members of a Club. Experiments have proved that the average Rotarian enjoys such opportunities for him to become more

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conversant with the administrative procedure of Rotary International.

(b) A second section consisting of concise explanatory digests of the substance of each Proposal, so that a Club President, or someone designated by him, can read to the Club the substance of what a Proposal seeks to create or alter or accomplish. Some Clubs may be able to run off mimeographed copies of this section to be used at the Club meetings.

(This also should be suggested in the Foreword.)

Each such digested statement must be prepared by the R. I. Secretariat, or by an ad hoc Committee, with care to make it not only concise but clear and understandable to any Rotarian even tho he is not familiar with the constitutional documents of R. I.

Here are some illustrations of the style of such digested statements of 1958 Proposals:

58-2: When District Assembly May be Held. Each District Assembly of Club Presidents and secretaries at present must be held annually in the month of April or May. This proposal is that the limitation to these months be deleted, and instead the Assembly be held annually at such time as the Governor

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may determine; provided that dates determined are not the same as those selected for the District Conference, the International Assembly, or the International Convention.

58-3: Service of R.I. Directors on Nominating Committee for President Nominating Committee for President of R. I. At present if there are two R. I. Directors from the same geographic region, the Board elects one of them as the member of the Committee and the other is his alternate. This Proposal is that automatically the one serving his second year on the Board shall be the member of the Committee and the one serving his first year on the Board shall be his alternate.

58-4: Membership in a Rotary Club on the basis of either location of [lace of business or of residence. While it has been generally understood that a Rotarian's place of business must be within the territory of his Club, the R. I. By-laws and the Club Constitution do not definitely so state.*

* This omission was corrected at the 1958 Convention.

Consequently some Clubs have reasoned that a man is engaged in his Rotary classification even in the suburban village or town where he resides, altho his place of business is in

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a nearby city; and they have elected such men to membership. This Proposal seeks to recognize as proper such reasoning and make legal such elections.

In preparing the booklet of Proposals an effort should e made to group together in consecutive order as far as may be possible all Proposals on the same or practically the soe subject, so as to encourage concentration upon all in the same group at Club meetings.

The digested statements should also be printed in the R. I. magazines as part of an article (probably several articles) on the subject of R. I. legislation, and the participation of Rotarians in their Clubs and Conferences in the review of Proposals. Such articles should be written in a style to attract reader's attention and hold his interest. They should not be printed in small type or on a crowded page or buried in the back of the magazine. Their writers should be thinking of a great democratic organization with its members in 110 countries revising and amending the laws of Rotary International. Nothing else like it in the world, etc.

(c) The third section of the booklet will contain the proper legalistic wording of each Proposal so as to

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comply with present Constitution and By-laws provisions. This will permit any Rotarian to examine the booklet sent his Club and check the accuracy of the digests should he so desire.

All the planning for Club programs on legislation is likely to fall short of complete success so long as we continue to make delivery of the booklet to the outgoing Club officers many of whom may fail to turn over the booklet to their successors in office several weeks later -- at least in North America. For proper attention the booklet should be delivered directly to those in office during the Rotary year in which the Proposals are to be acted upon in Convention.

The present May 15th date for the mailing of the booklet should be modified so that the booklet will not be received by any Club officer prior to July 1st of the Rotary legislative year. A staggered schedule of mailing should be worked out so that the booklet will be received everywhere in the world including North America on or about July 15th. Incoming Club officers should be advised that the booklet will be coming and to reserve Club meetings for its review.


At the International Assembly immediately prior to the legislative year,

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the booklet of Proposals should be delivered to each incoming Governor and he should be made familiar with its purpose. He should understand that he is expected to encourage his Clubs to use the booklet and have as many meetings as may be necessary to review all the Proposals, and to unite with other' Clubs in selecting a well-qualified Rotarian of the District to represent them in the Council on Legislation at the Convention. He should conduct the election of the Representative at the Conference in a manner which will emphasize the importance of the service he is being asked to render. He should promptly report to the Secretariat who has been elected so that he may receive his booklet, etc.

Time may not be available at the Conference for the discussion of the Proposals except in exceptional cases but the Governor should schedule sufficient time for the reading of the digested statements and get responses to the queries: How many Clubs decided to oppose it? and for his information the Representative on the Council can take note of the responses or the Conference Secretary can record them for his information.

Altho there may not be time at the Conference for the discussion of Proposals, the reading of the digested statements of them will give infor-

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mation about the Proposals to the Rotarians present from Clubs which failed to have examinations of them, and cause such Rotarians to encourage their Clubs to do their duty in the next legislative year,


A Rotarian accepting this responsibility when sitting in the Council will be prepared to present the conclusions of the Clubs of his District as to the various Proposals. He will also give thoughtful consideration to the conclusions of the Clubs of' other Districts as presented by their Representatives. He will weigh carefully all arguments pro and con on each Proposal before giving his vote as to the recommendation the Council will make to the Delegates in Convention as to what the Council believes should be their action on it.

If his election occurs early enough the Representative might be able to assist the District Governor in getting the Clubs of the District to devote meetings to the examination of Proposals. To some extent he might assist Club Presidents by serving as the Moderator of the first of a series of a Club’s meeting on Proposals.

Some plan should be worked out by which all Representatives will be

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elected at least six months in advance of the Council meeting so that they may have at least that much time to familiarize themselves with the proposed legislation.


The Council room should be large enough to seat 300 participants in comfortable chairs, with a balcony or other additional space for "a visitors' gallery". Center seating for the voting Representatives elected by the Clubs and the other voting members. Non-voting members should be seated in the wings. Sufficient floor microphones thruout the body of Representatives, to enable anyone to reach a microphone with only a few steps to go to ask for recognition by the chairman, and to address the Council.

A grand feature of convention hospitality on Saturday evening does tend to distract the Council members attention from their deliberate responsibilities. It may prove necessary to move the Council sessions back to Friday and Saturday.

The tempo of the Council meeting should be that of an unhurried deliberative body with every Proposal receiving its due consideration. Even tho little time may be required for the conclusion of the Council with regard

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to some Proposals, they should be recommended for adoption or rejection as the case may be with courteous consideration of the sincerity and good intentions of their proposers. Never should there be any suspicion that a group of Council Members, having decided in advance what recommendations the Council shall make, is organized to see that the Council makes them.

Opening session, introductions, etc. it would be helpful if first of all the voting members elected by the Clubs of their Districts were asked to stand in a body while the President addresses appropriate remarks to them as the real body of the Council such as:

"The Council has been created by the Convention to review the Proposals and recommend what should be the action on them by the Convention delegates.

"You have been elected by the Clubs of your Districts to serve on the Council because of your knowledge of and experience in Rotary.

"You have sensed the conclusion of the Clubs of your District as to the Proposals and here you can compare them with the conclusions of the Clubs of other Districts.

"You are expected to participate in

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the discussions at this Council meeting as to the merits of each Proposal and unitedly join in a conclusion as to what action will be most beneficial to the member Clubs of Rotary International.

"Thank you. Please be seated."

There are nine other voting members of the Council --

They should be introduced individually with reasons for their inclusion in the Council.

Then the non-voting members of the Council should be individually introduced with the reasons for their being members of the Council.

These introductions should be followed by the introduction of the Chairman pro tem and the Secretary.

Next time come the appointment of the Credentials and the two other Committees by the President and their approval by the Council. The procedure in connection with this should not appear to be hurried lest it convey an impression that an inner circle is operating. It is easy for those who are helpfully expediting routine matters, to feel that they are merely doing what should be done, and that everybody else understands and appreciates what they are doing. However

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it is also easy for others to get an idea that there is an inner circle that is running everything.

A statement should be made that the first step in the organizing of the Council is to ascertain that all who claim to be members, have the proper credentials. In order to save time for the discussion of Proposals the President has appointed in advance 3(?) members of the Council to examine credentials. Some credentials were examined at Lake Placid while some members were there for the International Assembly and Institute. Others have been and are being examined here. Hope this meets with your approval. Does it? Thank you. We will have a report from the Committee later.

Then should follow similar informative statements as to the other committees, their functions, the personnel of Council members to them and a request for approval by the Council – all done in a manner calculated to make the members of the Council feel that they are properly organizing themselves as the Council. Questions as to the Committees should be invited and answered. Members of the Committees should not take seats that have been reserved for them until their appointment has been approved by the Council and the President has introduced them.

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Does this deference to the Council members seem silly "because we all know it is the regular routine"? To some it may, but the majority of the Council members may not have previously participated in the organization of a Council meeting. They may not know it is the regular routine, and if they learn that it is they may not appreciate it. The tactful thing to do is to make all elected members of the Council feel that they have been elected for an important service, and not to be merely "yes men", altho they may be so in fact. The tempo in which such things are done is important.

(Incidentally the Rules of Procedure of the Council should be reviewed to make sure they fit into the sort of Council procedure I am suggesting.)

When the organization of the Council is completed there should be an explanation that the action of the convention and the recommendation of the Council is customarily expressed in one of the following 6 forms:

    1. That the proposal be adopted as proposed.

    2. That the Proposal be rejected.

    3. That the Proposal be amended by the Convention as follows (insert suggested amendment) and then adopted amended

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A Proposal having been filed and published for action by a Convention is in the hands of the Convention and can be amended only by Convention action. An Advisory Council is exceeding its authority if it assumes a right to amend a Proposal, and recommend its adoption as the Council has amended it. Furthermore such action deprives the Proposer of his right to have his Proposal considered by the Convention in the form in which he proposed it.

d) That the Proposal be referred to the Board for study and report to the next legislative Convention.

This action implies that in the event that the Board decided that the Proposal should be re-proposed, or that a revision of, or a substitute for it should be proposed, the Board will file such a Proposal at the proper time for action by the next legislative Convention. With reference to Resolutions, as distinctive from Enactments to amend constitutional documents, this action may be "for study and decision as to action."

e) That the Proposer’s request to withdraw the Proposal be granted.

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f) That the Proposal be considered as having been withdrawn.

This action is used only on occasions when it is desirable to avoid recording a vote either to adopt or to reject a Proposal; and the Proposer does not request permission to withdraw it.

By this time the Council will feel well organized with its members informed and at ease. A five minute recess might be declared to permit everyone to shake hands with his neighbors who are within arm's length, before taking up the first Proposal listed for attention.

The presentation of a Proposal should be made not, only by number and title, but also by reading the digested summary of it.

When the Council decides upon its recommendation as to a Proposal there should be a recognized reason for it evidenced in the discussion of it which should be summarized by the presiding officer for the record.

It should be assumed that all Proposals have been offered with the best of intentions and none of them should be rejected as tho it were a message from an enemy. In personal contacts

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a Rotarian will courteously express red, ret that he cannot agree with another Rotarian's ideas. Likewise, in the Council a recommendation to reject a Proposal should be coupled with an expression of regret, a friendly explanation of the reason the recommendation had to be made.

The report of the Council to the Convention should be so prepared as to include and to convey to the Convention the reason for each recommendation, and the vote by which the decision of the Council was determined.


Next the Convention. Now we come to the real legislative body of Rotary International -- the Delegates of the member Clubs in Convention -- a large body that can be guided and aided in functioning intelligently and constructively and happily; but without helpful guidance and assistance, may become confused and discouraged, and function in a manner that may give color to a belief that it is impossible for it to function successfully.

However, the fact that the Delegates may disappoint some Proposer by not adopting his Proposal, or may fail to act in accord with a recommendation of the Council on Legislation, is not proof that they are not functioning

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properly. After all they are Rotary International in session. When the representatives of the constituent Clubs of the Association make a decision, it must be accepted as the working of the democratic process.

Rotarians are all men of understanding and good-will, and because they are, they should be able to demonstrate to the world how a large body of men can participate constructively and successfully in democratic legislative procedure. This can be done if there is a persistent, intelligent and understanding effort by us all to do it.

When the time arrives in the Convention program for the reports and legislative action, it should be announced that "Rotary International is now in session" and every Delegate made to feel that "this is what my Club elected me to come to the Convention for, not as a spectator or listener, but as a participant at least with my vote which is effective even tho it has to be cast in conjunction with the votes of other Delegates." He should so
feel that he will return to his Club to report what "We did at the Convention."

In connection with the Reports, questions concerning them should be encouraged and answered. Delegates

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should be encouraged to move that a report be received and entered in the Proceedings of the Convention. Every bit of participation by a Club Delegate is that much more democratic participation.

Mention should be made not only that the Delegates have in their hands copies of the Legislative Proposals, but that they have had an opportunity to discuss them in their Clubs and know the Conclusions of their Clubs with regard to them, and that in addition the Clubs of their respective Districts elected a Rotarian of the District to serve on the Council on Legislation, which has been in session here discussing the merits of each Proposal, and preparing a recommendation on it as a suggestion for Convention action.

It must not be assumed that all the Delegates are familiar with all the things the officers and committeemen are familiar with. The majority of the Delegates are not. Some are at their first Rotary Convention. They are likely to be somewhat confused amid all the excitement. Some have come from Clubs and Districts where the prerequisite things have not been done as they should have been. The stating of them at the Convention will send Delegates home with an interest in seeing that they, hereafter, are done in their Clubs and

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Districts. Education as to Rotary procedure must be a continuing effort.

Next there should be a statement that the Secretary of the Convention (or a reading clerk) will read the number and title, and a digested summary of each Proposal indicating what it seeks to create or change or accomplish. "The full text of the Proposal is in the booklet you have."

Doing this with each Proposal will set the stage for the intelligent discussion of it by thus helping everybody to understand it; or it may obviate any need for discussing it.

Then an explanation that action by the Convention is customarily voted in one of the following 6 forms:

a) That the Proposal be adopted as recommended.

b) That the Proposal be rejected.

c) That the Proposal be amended by the Convention as follows (insert suggested amendment) and then adopted as amended.

d) That the Proposal be referred to the Board for study and report to the next legislative Convention.

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This action includes the implication, that in the event the Board decides that the Proposal should be re-proposed, or that a revision of it, or a substitute for it should be proposed, the Board will file such a Proposal at the proper time for action at the next legislative Convention. With reference to Resolutions as distinctive from Enactments to amend the constitutional documents, this action may be "for study and decision as to action."

e) That the Proposer's request to withdraw the Proposal be granted.

f) That the Proposal be considered as having been withdrawn. This action is used only on occasions when for a particular reason it is desirable to avoid recording a vote either to adopt or to reject a Proposal and the Proposer does not request permission to withdraw it.

If the conclusions of the Delegate body as to a Proposal is not clearly determinable by either voice or standing vote, a vote by printed ballots, including those for proxies, will be cast at the polling boxes the following day.

As each Proposal was filed with the Secretary it was in effect presented

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to the Convention with a motion for its adoption. It has been referred to, and examined by the Council on Legislation, which has prepared its recommendation as to action on it.

We will now proceed to consider and act upon the Proposals, and if there is no objection to doing so, we will consider them in the same order they were considered by the Council.

Also with your consent we will proceed as follows: The number and title of a Proposal will be read, together with a digest of its substance. The recommendation of the Council will then be read. Then the Proposal will be open for discussion, and the Chair will first recognize as the first speaker, a representative of the Proposer. Following him others will be recognized. When you are ready to close the discussion, a motion for action by the Convention will be in order.

The Secretary (or a reading clerk) reads the number, title and substance of the first Proposal to be considered.

The Chairman of the Council then presents the recommendation of the Council together with the reason it and the vote on it. The Delegates have a right to know the vote as indicating the weight of

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the recommendation -- a unanimous recommendation naturally will have more weight with the Delegates than a 51 to 49 one.

The Chairman of the Council having presented the Council's recommendation, emphatically should NOT end it with a motion that the Convention concur in it -- not even if he has a right to do so by being also a Club Delegate as he may be. It is such things as this which indicate that control is centralized on the stage, instead of being on the floor of the Convention where it is supposed to be. Such procedure may succeed in a labor union, or a political gatherings, but it should not be used in a Rotary Convention.

There should be no conflict between the Board and the Council but this does not mean that the Board must control the Council. There should be no conflict between the "Board and Council" and the Convention. If there is any evidence or even a suspicion of such controls there is bound to be an unhappy situation. We should wholeheartedly recognize that the Convention is Rotary International and everybody cooperate to make certain the constructive and harmonious functioning of its Delegate body.

If the digested summaries are to be read to the Convention (as has been

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suggested) it may not be necessary to print them in the Daily Bulletin; but as most Delegates take their Bulletins home with them having the reasons for the Council's recommendation in them would help them in reporting to their Clubs.

Every Rotarian should know not only what Proposals are made, but what action was taken on them, and the reasons for it. There should be readable articles post-Convention in the magazines explaining what happened to the Proposals and why.


It may be noted that I am endeavoring to have the Council recognized as an advisory body, and the Delegates in Convention as a legislative body. Such a recognition will be in harmony with the structural character of Rotary International.

It may seem that implementing my suggestions will require more time than present procedure does; but will not require much more and whatever it is, it will be time well spent in preserving the democratic character of the Rotary movement, which is needed to enable it to accomplish its mission in the world.

The greater the speed to get somewhere, the greater the danger of losing

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some things that are valuable. This is true in legislative procedure, as well as on the highway.

All thru the entire operation there must be an atmosphere of ascertaining the wishes of the member Clubs of the Association, the constituents of Rotary International, and accepting their decisions as expressed by their Delegates by their majority vote (or sometimes by a stated minimal majority, of two-thirds or whatever it may be).

In making my suggestions, I am not implying that none of the things I am suggesting is now being done, nor have I endeavored to foresee all possible contingencies related to them.

My suggestions are neither criticizing nor giving credit, but an effort to make clear my conception of something which is basic to having the democracy of Rotary work successfully.


Perhaps, what I am thinking about might be termed a psychological approach and attitude with relation to the groupings of Rotarians in Clubs, Conferences, Councils and Conventions, on the part of both rank and file Rotarians, and all those who from time to time are in positions of leadership and responsibility.

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There must be thought by us all as to the way that groups of Rotarians and individuals in their groups, will or may react mentally or emotionally, not only to what is said and done, but to the manner in which it is said or done.

Isn't that what missionaries and social service workers are doing in contact with those whom they would help? Isn't that what the statesmen and leaders of all Nations, with relation to their citizens or subjects or those of other Nations, are doing (whether they realize it or not)? In the Rotary Movement where is special opportunity for success, because Rotarians are men dedicated to understanding and goodwill, and desirous of making their contribution to the peace of the world.

You have said that we must not let the mechanics of Rotary interfere with its spirit and object. You are right, Lou, - - we all can agree on that. But we may have to put more oil in the machinery, and make it work so smoothly that it will seem to be working automatically; and that means thoughtfulness of and helpfulness to each other, as we maintain freedom and democratic participation in achieving Rotary's destiny.

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After all, it has been the mechanics of organizing Clubs and holding Conferences, and Institutes, and Assemblies, and Conventions, which have been the vehicle which has carried the spirit and object of Rotary around the world.

If we are thinking of discarding some piece of Rotary mechanism, we should weigh carefully its relation to all the other pieces of Rotary mechanism.

While democratic participation in Rotary administrative work and legislative procedure must not be abandoned, with the further extension of the movement there may have to be some further decentralizing of those phases of it.


We have seen how over the years the Rotary movement developed a drift away from democratic procedure. We have found how difficult it is to get it back. Whenever we make changes, we must be careful that we do not thereby start it drifting again toward a possible future set-up, which will make it easy, after you and I are gone, to seize control of the organization, and pervert its purposes. It has happened in other organizations.

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I am opposed to any centralizing trend that some day may permit a dictatorship for Rotary, no matter how unlikely may be at present any probability of it --

First -- because it may not be a benevolent one.

Second -- because it won't have the influence for the acceptance of "Service above Self" thruout the world that a democratic Movement will have.

Third -- because it will be another step toward doing away with democracy thruout the world, and substituting totalitarianism in Governments.


What is really needed right now is a research council to study the world that Rotary is facing, and how Rotary can find its place and fulfill its destiny in it. That means research on something more than legislative

Many years ago an automobile was stalled on a hillside in France

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The Rotarians riding in it got out and examined all parts of its machinery, finding no source of the trouble. Finally some one looked in the gas tank and found it empty!

The spirit and object of Rotary may need some reviewing.

Meanwhile I would like to see our present form of legislative procedure have a good tryout.



by Past Dis.Gov. Marianito F. Lichauco

We are not only the architects of our structures, but we must lay the bricks ourselves.

As Rotarians, we must not be satisfied with telling people about the Rotary principles and what them stand for, but we must ourselves live up to and apply these principles in our private, business and social life.

- - - - -

It’s harder to conceal ignorance than it would be to acquire knowledge.

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A Chinese banker in south Malaya has issued "TEN COMMANDMENTS" for his employees. They are :

1.  Don't lie. It wastes my time and yours. I'm sure to catch you in the end.

2.  Watch your work and not the clock. A long day's work makes a long day short, and a short day's work makes m7¢ face long.

3.  Give me more than I expect and I'll pay you more than you expect. I can afford to increase your pay if you can increase my profits.

4.  Keep out of debt. You owe so much to yourself that you cannot afford to owe anybody else.

5.  Dishonesty is never an accident.

6.  Mind your own business and in time you will have a business of your own to mind.

7.  Don't do anything here that hurts your self-respect. The employee who is willing to steal for me is can able of stealing from me.

8.  It's none of my business what you do at night, but if dissipation affects what you do next day, you will last half as long as you hoped.

9.  Don't tell me what I'd like to hear, but what I ought to hear. I don't want a valet for my vanity but I need one for my money.

10.  Don't kick if I kick. If you are worth correcting, you are worth keeping.

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by Ches, Perry

I am here as an American Rotarian talking to his fellow American Rotarians to throw out a challenge to you amid the tumult and the shouting of Rotary's Golden Year.

Each year we all celebrate the Holiday Season, put up our trees and decorations, sing our carols, send out our cards, exchange our presents and then quickly slip back to just where we were before the advent of
Christmas and Hanukah.

My Club hopes to welcome you all at the great Golden Jubilee Convention in Chicago. It will be a thrilling culmination of this Golden Year in Rotary. It will be something long , to be remembered. But when the tumult and the shouting has died down, when 25,000 Rotarians have sung Auld Lang Syne, when yon have gone to your home and we have gone back to daily tasks -- what then?

Does the future hold any possibility that there may be something new in
our Club meetings, our District Conferences, our International Conventions? Paul Harris and Harry Ruggles were not afraid to something new, something unique,  but that was 50 years ago. What was unique then is commonplace now. Is the

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status quo of Rotary sufficient for another 50 or even another 25 years?

Rotary is a social movement and social-movement may develop a mentality, a way of thinking, in which the most comforting thought is the maintenance of that deadly thing
the status quo. When anything stops growing it begins to decay. Rotary should constantly stimulate our thoughts to travel thru unfrequented channels of our brains.

Social movements are conceived and born and, like human beings, may grow to maturity and then gradually slow down, and as we might say begin to develop asthma, bursitis, hardening of the arteries. They may live on indefinitely as something to be highly respected, something to belong to, something to be identified with, but not participated in. I suspect that there are even now men who belong to their Rotary Clubs merely because it seems to them to be the thing to do. If there are any such here I would like to direct their thinking into new channels of thought.

And I want to encourage our young men in Rotary who have been thrilled by the idealism of the Movement, to whom Rotary is a revelation, an inspiration, a call to service in a

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great adventure - - the making of understanding and good-will and constructive cooperation so widespread among the peoples of the world that there will be no more wars.

A false, a vicious ideology is spreading among mankind – an ideology that shouts for peace in world but we know that for many it must be the peace of abject slavery.

Various efforts are being made to defeat or contain that ideology without assured success. In Rotary there is a simple idea which, as people accept it, becomes an infusion that will produce immunity from the poison of that malignant ideology. We have proved its effectiveness in our own fellowship and now our thoughts should be concentrated on how to get this simple idea accepted by people generally. And that is Rotary’s over-all Objective. There is no time to be lost in such an endeavour for our human race is now increasing at the rate of 30,000,000 souls a year.

What an unhappy, fearful world we have in this middle of the 20th Century. Not because any Rotarian or anyone else who has accepted and practised the Ideal of Service has ever renounced it but because so few, comparatively speaking, have ever heard of it. It is this ideal, the way of life it indicates, the Golden Rule of human relations, found in

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All the principal religions, that shows us how to recognize the answer to the Christian’s prayer: "Thy will be done in earth as it is in Heaven." To get every man, woman and child to realize that this rule points the road to plenty, to health, to justice and to peace is Rotary’s over-all Objective.

Many others individually and in organizations are working to this same end but Rotary was called to experiment in presenting the ideal in a new way and for 50 years Rotary has been richly blessed to prepare itself for a great accomplishment.

Organizing another 8,000 Rotary Clubs and having another 400,000 Rotarians will be another great contribution and to a limited degree to the accomplishment of our over-all Objective but while we are thus doubling our membership how many millions or tens of millions of converts to Communism will have been made? They are being made you know – by men and women who believe in something not just once a week but every day, every hour. And what they believe they are selling to others with energy, enthusiasm and persistence. Do we Rotarians believe in the ideal of Service enough to sell it to others with energy, enthusiasm and persistence?

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A Rotary program which will with greatest speed multiply tremendously the number of people in our country and in all other countries who accept and practise the Ideal of Service in their lives whether they be shop-keepers or statesmen, laboring men or industrialists, teachers or bankers, share-croppers or plantation owners, newsboys or high school students is necessary. We must develop such a program and do a better job with it
than the Communists are doing with theirs. We must not assume that we can do our full part by contributing our annual dues or that by selecting from year to year a few of our fellow Rotarians to serve as Officers of Rotary international we can depend upon them to do all the necessary thinking on the subject. They will do a lot of thinking – they have to
do so as the administrative element of the Association, and they are doing a fine job of administration. We know they are doing their best to serve our Clubs. They may overlook some things. They may make some mistakes. If they feel that we are thinking with them they will be most likely to be thinking with us. Physically we can go also project our mental explorations and conclusions into that building. Thought waves go everywhere.

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Rotary is a great democratic organization and it is constructive thinking by its constituents that makes a democracy successful. Our Clubs are the constituents of Rotary International and we Rotarians are the constituents of our Clubs. It is ideas that have come out of the Clubs that have made Rotary what it is today. What it will be in the future will result from ideas that come out of the Clubs. In his Club, in my Club, in every Club there are men who can give thought to the accomplishment of our overall Objective, and when thousands of Rotarians in this country and all over the world are doing so Rotary will truly be a living force in human relations.

To this end each Club must each of its members realize that he is the man with this message for all other men, women and children--that the solution of all the problems of human relations depends upon each individual accepting and implementing the Ideal of Service in all his or her contacts with others.

We have been considering the over-all Objective of Rotary, of Rotary Clubs and of Rotarians. Now let us turn our thoughts for awhile to the mechanics of the Association of Rotary Clubs – that is the laws or rules under which we assemble for our meetings

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Local, national, regional, and international or supernational. As we have to have such laws or rules our Clubs should be concerned to have them clear and workable and then not forget our responsibilities to make them work out successfully.

We know that those whom our Club and the other constituent Clubs have elected as International President, Directors and District Governors, and those appointed to Committees, will conscientiously endeavor to comply with the conclusions of the Clubs as indicated in Convention enactments or resolutions. However there are many things that have to be implemented by the Clubs. Let us see what some of them are at the present time.

Beginning this year our U. S. Clubs have two added duties:

One is the election at the District Conference of the best-qualified available Rotarian in the District as a Member of the Advisory Council on Legislation at the 1956 Convention. Has your Club devoted any thought as to whom it would like to have serve? The Clubs of each District must work out the procedure to nominate for and elect to this office. No provision has been made for expenses of such a Councillor to the Convention but this may come to pass as it can be done by R.I. Board.

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Action. Our Clubs might be thinking about how their Councillor may be advised as to the conclusions of the clubs of his District as to proposed legislation.

The other new responsibility is that each Club in each Zone in the U. S. now has the opportunity to make a nomination (limited to Past R.I. Directors) for service on the Nominating Committee for President of R. I. in 1956-57. Has your club been thinking about making such a nomination? Forms for such nominations for the Committee will be sent to the Clubs by the Central Office between the 1st and the 15th of February. Any nomination must be filed with the Secretary of R. I. by April 1st. From nominations so made the Conventions Delegates will elect from each Zone the Member of the Committee. There is no provision that the names the Nominees will be made public prior to the Convention and if the Clubs would like to have this information so as to instruct their Delegates some thought should be given to asking the R.I. Board for it.

Did your Club suggest a good man to this year’s Nominating Committee for President of R.I. in 1955-56. It was your privilege to so participate in the administration of the Association.

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Has your Club advised its members of the more liberal provision (page 91 of the Seattle Convention Proceedings) in regard to a Club excusing, if its Board concurs, a Senior Active or Past Service member from attendance requirements?

Has your Club made a study of the new provision for biennial legislation and the filing of proposals to amend the Constitution and By-laws (pages 118-121 Seattle Convention Proceedings) so that your Club will be informed in the event that it should want to propose an amendment at any time? Does your Club consider that ordinary resolutions which merely express the sentiments of the Delegates can be acted upon every year?

Does your Club want a lively discussion on a Rotary subject? There was quite a debate at Seattle about using meetings of other Rotary clubs in keeping up one’s attendance record.

In the past, when there has been a divided opinion on some subject and a negative opinion, the proposal has been revised and brought up again. A Club could use this subject for a lively Club discussion. (See pages 78-89 of the Seattle Convention Proceedings.) At least one Club (Oklahoma City) has been studying it and has worked what it thinks will be an acceptable basis of agreement for an improvement of the present situation. Although there can’t be legislative

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action again until 1956 your Club and mine might get a copy of Oklahoma City’s proposal, discuss it right now and see if it has any merit.

A Club discussion could be developed from another subject on which the Convention deferred action and that is whether a man’s eligibility to membership in a Rotary Club may be determined in part by his place of residence as well as by the location of his business. (Page 137 Seattle Convention Proceedings.) It is a fact that for years various suburban clubs have undertaken to settle this problem for themselves in favor of the residence. The idea of business profit from membership in a Rotary Club has now been so far forgotten and so over-shadowed by Vocational aand Community and International Service that it is not difficult to understand why some Rotarians feel that there is no good reason for insisting that the location of a man’s place of business must be a controlling factor for his membership in a Rotary Club.

The discussion of such matters of concern to us all will intensify the interest of Rotarians in our Association and prepare our Delegates for an intelligent and constructive participation in the business sessions of our Conferences and Convention.

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It will require somebody in the Club to be interested in getting this done successfully. It may be the President or one of the Past Presidents or perhaps some younger member to whom the Rotary Movement presents a real challenge.

In the smaller Clubs this can be done at regular meetings. In the larger Clubs it may be done thru representative Grass Foots Committees which will present their conclusions to the to the Club as a whole at Club meeting/or thru Club publication.

There are some scores of subject that could be the basis of Club discussions—subjects that not only have to do with the mechanics of Rotary but may lead to the accomplishment of Rotary’s over-all Objective. New ideas that may require several years of considering before settled one way or the other.

For example, is it necessary to continue to sell the fundamentals of the Ideal of Service year after year to all Rotary Clubs? After two or three years of existence as a Rotary Club isn’t it likely that the Club has a pretty thoro conception of the Ideal of Service, of the Object of Rotary and its four applications? Could it be possible to consider it an important function of the District Governor to sell the Ideal of Service to non-Rotarians? It may be a startling thought but it might have possi-

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Incidentally there is the problem as to what method can be developed by which our Clubs can communicate with each to exchange ideas and conclusions. Those to whom we have given responsibility for the publication of The Rotarian feel that its columns should not be open to the discussion of any matters of Rotary program or procedure which the Board considers as controversial. Aren’t there such matters or proposals that are debatable subjects without having to be labeled as controversial? If we can’t discuss matters on which at present we disagree how are we ever going to reach agreement? Shouldn’t there be some method for a Club to suggest something for consideration by other Clubs?

If your Club wants to consider something that is really forward-looking get a copy of the Redistricting Committee’s conception of a possible future re-organization of the present over two hundres District in Rotary which was submitted by Chairman Bill Rastetter at the 1953 International Assembly. It will be good for several half hours of analysis.

Are our Clubs satisfied with the procedure in the advisory Council on Legislation and in the Convention? Is there too much speed to get the

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business over and get on with the entertainment? Could there be some improvements? It is the Club’s Convention and they can have the kind of Convention they want if they put their minds to it.

Wouldn’t a discussion of Convention legislative procedure make a good Club program? Do the members of the Council clearly realize that they are to study the merits of all proposals and present the Council’s recommendations to the Voting Delegates together with their reasons for making them--and then they are done. Isn’t it correct to say that they have no responsibility to see their recommendations are concurred in? Insofar as the members of the Council may be Voting Delegates from their Clubs, they have the same rights of participation as other Voting Delegates but, at this point in the proceeding, none

as members of the Council. It is the Delegates of the Clubs that have full responsibility for action on legislation. Of course they are glad to have the benefit of the Council’s recommendations but they are under no compulsion to follow them--altho they are likely to do so. Are our Clubs satisfied with the present procedure in which the Chairman of the Council presents its recommendation and immediately moves its adoption? Doesn’t that procedure tend to discourage discussion by

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The Voting Delegate and accomplish what in political bodies is considered as "railroading"?

If time permitted, other topics could be suggested but surely I’ve given you something to start thinking about.

Our Clubs have two responsibilities--

One is to convince all mankind of the importance or accepting and practicing the Ideal of Service as a way of life. There is encouragement for us as we note how many thousands of people today are doing this. We read about such people in The Rotarian, in Readers Digest, in Colliers and other magazines (unfortunately not very often in our newspapers) and we can be thankful for the Society of Friends, the Boy and Girl Scouts and Guides, the Christophers, the salvation Army, and the Churches of course, that are exemplifying the Ideal of Service. But a steadily increasing population needs every Rotarian in action.

The other responsibility is to take our Association set-up and its government such as outstanding example of constructive democratic functioning that it will be an illustration to the whole world that there can be peace among men of good-will and that democracy in a workable theory for Governmental action.

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This can be done by the conduct of our Clubs, of our Conferences, and our Conventions.

As an American Rotarian speaking to his fellow Americans, I want to conclude this hodge-podge of thoughts with a reference to our relations with our fellow Rotarians of the rest of the world.

The extension of the Rotary Movement has progressed so well--as it has had something so basic in the Ideal of Service--that very soon there will be more Rotary Clubs outside the U.S.A. than within it. When that comes to pass perhaps we American Rotarians may have to think things over a bit.

You and I get a thrill out of realizing that there are Rotary Clubs in 80 countries or geographical Regions -- all member Clubs with ours of Rotary International. But how much do we Americans know about Rotary around the world?

I know the sort of fellowship we have in the Chicago Club, the evident interest in and conception of the philosophy of Rotary that I and my fellow Rotarians have – but if I stop to reflect, I realize that there is no uniformity of Rotary behavior or Rotary thinking on the part of all 700m Chicago Rotarians.

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Men come into our Club who have been officers or members of other Rotary Clubs and it shocks me to discover that some of them are disappointed in my Club. On the other hand some of us get around to visit other Rotary Clubs and we are disappointed in them.

Does a lack of complete uniformity of procedure and of thinking American Rotary Clubs mean anything serious? Not if we have tolerance among us. Fortunately despite our differences there is a certain basic unity among us even tho we differ in details.

But what do we American Rotarians know about Rotary Clubs in other countries? Are we assuming that they are all just like our American Rotary Clubs -- have the same sort of programs, do the same things, have the same conception of Rotary that we Americans have for the moment I am assuming that all Americans have the same conception of Rotary which in fact we haven’t.

The Rotary Movement in the USA reflects our American way of thinking and acting, our way of life. To us American Rotarians that seems natural and reasonable. Well then, must we not realize that Rotary in any other country will reflect the way of thinking and acting, the way

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of life, of the people of that country? This must be true whether it be in Britain or France or Italy or Brazil or Chile or India or Japan or Australia or Syria, or anywhere else.

Around the world there may not be complete uniformity of thought as to Rotary procedures or Rotary philosophy. A basic unity with regard to what really is fundamental in the Rotary Movement may be all we can hope for, and all that may be essential.

For most of the past 50 years Rotary has in fact been an American Rotary extending itself into other countries. We have set it up as an International Association and called it "Rotary International" Now "inter-national" means between nations and it is possible that Rotarians in other countries as understand it while we Americans have an idea that it means SUPER-national and it is easy for us to feel that way as long as we are in control of it.

Politically human society in general has not yet progressed beyond the national concept. Americans are not disposed to surrender their National Sovereignty. While the peoples of practically all countries have joined in an advanced effort to promote

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peaceful relations, and to eliminate want and disease and injustice and was, they have done so as United Nations. Have we done likewise in our Association of Rotary Clubs or have we done something else? Have we a United NATIONS of Rotary Clubs or have we a SUPER-National Association of them? It is important that we have understanding on this point with our fellow Rotarians of other countries. So far as promoting the Ideal of Service but with reference to the government of an Association it may prove important.

When my Club was the only Rotary Club it was supreme but when San Francisco and Seattle and other Rotary Clubs came into existence my Club discovered that it had partners in the development of the Rotary Movement. So it is now. American Rotary must realize that in other countries it has partners in the maintenance and further development of the Rotary Movement and we Americans must recognize
them as full partners whether it is in a super-national or merely a multi-national Association.

The first extension of the Rotary Movement beyond the USA and Canada was to Britain and Ireland. British and Irish Rotarians were the North

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Americans’ earliest partners. The First World War almost caused a dissolution of the partnership but fortunately it was avoided and after the War the partners got together and worked out a revision of the Association program and of its Constitution—that’s when we adopted the name "Rotary International". Again in 1927 they collaborated in making some further revision of the constitution. But Rotary today is a multi-national, almost a pan-national Movement in which the British and Irish Clubs have maintained and probably will always maintain an Association of their own within R.I. Someone may think I should not mention this apparent inconsistency, that it is better for the rest of the world not to know about it but the rest of the world does know about it and American Rotarians should realize that it does.

As ideas and plans for the welfare of the Rotary Movement are brought forward by our partners, the Clubs in other countries, we Americans must be willing and able to see the value of such proposals, when they really have value, whether they be for local or regional application or for the program and the administration of the whole Movement. And we must be able to look at them from the other fellows point of view as well as our own.

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What the pattern of the Association of Rotary Clubs will be in the years ahead may have to be determined before very long. There is something in process that may precipitate it. a

At the Seattle Convention we learned that a revision of the Constitution and By-laws of Rotary international is on the drafting board. One is about due. The present edition (plus some amendments) dates back 33 years to when there practically Rotary Clubs only in North America, Britain and Ireland. As I understand it the contemplated revision will be the work of three North American Rotarians. They are able and sincere and experienced and world-minded Rotarians and capable of doing a good job but we of North America must realize that in 33 years wee have acquired many partners in the Govenroment of our Association.

Is it likely that we North Americans would be entirely satisfied with the drafting work of two Australians and a New Zealander? Or of two Indians and a Pakistani? Or of two Brazilians and a Paraguavan? The Constitution and By-laws (at least the Constitution) that is produced in this Golden Year of Rotary should be so universal and so fundamental that it will stand for the next

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quarter century at least and do it practically without need of amendments, and it should be a composite work of the whole Rotary world.

The making and changing of our laws will not in itself accomplish our over-all Objective altho it may en-courage Rotary Clubs and Rotarians in its accomplishment.

In the making or changing of Rotary laws our effort should always be to simplify rather than to expand them and make them more complex. This is especially necessary as we have no Supreme Court in Rotary to interpret them with finality, and of course no police force to enforce them.

Our laws should be largely rules of procedure so clear to, and so acceptable by Rotary Clubs and Rotarians of every country that compliance with them will be considered a reasonable obligation.

In calling attention to the importance of realizing that we Rotarians of Canada and the USA have partners to share with us the responsibility of leadership in the Association it is not my intention to imply that we are immediately, or ever, going to be relegated to a subordinate position in the Association. We can still maintain out outstanding position but it won’t be merely because

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we have a majority of the votes in Convention, or because the Central Office is located in an American City. The leadership of the USA and Canada among the nations o the world depends upon what we are and what we do in our own countries. Likewise leadership by North American Rotary in the Rotary world will depend upon what we are and what we do in our North American Clubs.

North American Rotary, that is Rotary Clubs and Rotarians in the USA and Canada, can retain their position of leadership by taking an informed and constructive interest in the administration of the Movement as it is today, particularly in their own countries, and by manifesting a broad-minded and sympathetic attitude toward the problems of Clubs in other countries and also to their ideas with regard to the Movement as a whole

Whether the character of our Rotary Association is determined to be inter-national or multi-national or super-national let it be based on the Golden Rule and the Four Way Test and its future success will be assured.

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the Rotary Movement but bear in mind that all we do in our Clubs, in our Conferences, in our Convention, in participation in a Movement which seeks to bring the human race to

realization that we all profit most when we all serve best, and when we all are doing that there will be peace in the world and happiness for the human race and for each individual in it.

Thank you for listening to my thinking out aloud.

Note: Address by Chesley R. Perry to the club of Nashville, Tenn. On Jan. 25th, 1955 – The year of Rotary’s 50th birthday. (Note by J.A.C.)



Q. Should Rotarians hold membership in other service clubs?

A. Rotarians are urged to refrain from dividing their interest and energies by accepting membership in other service clubs.

Q. Can my club help in the extension of Rotary in a nearby town?

A. Yes. Each Rotary club should inform itself as to what nearby towns are prospective localities for new clubs and, after gaining the approval of the district governor and under his supervision, make a survey of these towns to determine whether or not they could support a successful Rotary club.

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HOW to get along with people . . .

1. SPEAK TO PEOPLE -- there is nothing as nice as a cheerful word of greeting

2. SMILE AT PEOPLE – it takes 72 muscles to frown, only 14 to smile.

3. CALL PEOPLE BY NAME – the sweetest music to anyone’s ear is the sound of their name.

4. BE FRIENDLY AND HELPFUL—if you would have friends, be friendly.

5. BE CORDIAL – speak and act as if everything you do is a genuine pleasure.

6. BE GENUINELY INTERESTED IN PEOPLE – you can like everybody if you try.

7. BE GENEROUS WITH PRAISE – cautious of criticism

8. BE CONSIDERATE OF THE FEELINGS OF OTHER – it will be appreciated.

9. BE THOUGHTFUL OF THE OPINIONS OF OTHER – there are three sides to a controversy; yours, the other fellow’s, and the right.

10. BE ALERT TO GIVE SERVICE – what counts most in life is what we do for others.

. . . Rotary Whizz - Winnipeg

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Chesley R. Perry

November, 1957

To my Fellow Rotarians:

A couple years ago I did some thinking-out--loud in my talk on "Rotary's Great Objective." There were some comments that my thinking was too general for clear understanding or practical use. I shall now try to be more specific.

This communication is addressed first of all to the Rotarians of my Club but also to some other Rotarians of North America, and my thoughts may be of some interest to Rotarians in other regions.

The Rotary Movement has a basic objective - to universalize the acceptance and practice of the Golden Rule of Service (thoughtfulness of and helpfulness to others). The more democratic the Movement is the more successful it will be in accomplishing its objective.

I submit my thoughts for whatever they may prove to be worth. I may be right or I may be wrong but so that there will be no uncertainty as to what I have in mind I shall set it out in considerable detail.

"Rotary International is the Association of Rotary Clubs throughout the world." (Art.l, Constitution of R.I.)

To emphasize the fact that "Rotary International" is not something separate and apart from the Clubs but is the Clubs collectively, and in a still more inclusive sense the Rotarians who constitute the clubs, in this communication "the Association" is used instead of "Rotary International".

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Clubs but is the Clubs collectively, and in a still more inclusive sense the Rotarians

who constitute the Clubs, in this communication "the Association" is used instead of "Rotary International".

In the term "the Rotary Movement" is included all Rotarians, all Rotary Clubs, the Association of them, its general officers and directors, its district governors, its committees, its headquarters and branch office staffs, publications, conventions, regional and district conferences, the Rotary Foundation, and agencies that the Clubs have created for the Operation of the Movement.

The terms "direct participation, and "representative participation" are used as being more indicative of interest and action by constituents than more vague terms such as "democracy" and "representative Democracy".

In a Club "direct participation" will mean the participation of its constituent members as such (not as officers, directors, committeemen--representative service) in the consideration of and decisions as to Club action. The constituent members have "representative participation" in the actions of their officers, directors, committeemen.

In the Association "direct participation" by its constituent member Clubs will include electing delegates to conferences and conventions; making proposals for nomination and election to positions in the Association; examining legislative proposals and other

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referenda from Association headquarters to the Clubs; ,reviewing on their own, laws, procedures, customs of the Association; developing legislative proposals.

The clubs have "representative participation" in the Association on the one hand-through the actions of their delegates in conferences and conventions and on the other hand through the actions of the Association board, officers, committees and other agencies acting for the Clubs collectively.

Sections following this introduction:

(a) What I mean by "democracy" in Rotary.

(b) Present democracy in the Rotary Movement.

(c) Preserving direct participation.

(d) Why direct participation is important.

(a)  What I mean by "democracy" in Rotary

Democracy is a spirit

Sometimes the word democracy is used to indicate a form of government but without various explanatory qualifications we can only guess at what is meant by it.

Among the Nations of the world there are constitutional republics, parliamentary monarchies and other forms of government which are not really democracies but they may be described as democratic. How democratic they are depends upon how the people participate in them not as subjects but as constituent citizens.

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Any Nation or other grouping wherein the supreme control is retained by its constituents, altho the exercise of much power is delegated by them to representatives periodically elected by them, is fundamentally democratic.

At other times the word democracy is used to indicate a way of human beings living together in social equality but that too is an incomplete statement.

I conceive of democracy as a spirit or ideal which, if we accept it as a way of living with others, permeates and influences our activities and is manifested by them-- much in the same way the ideal of service to others is accepted by Rotarians and influences their activities.

The spirit of democracy, transcending the herd protective instinct of the animal genus, impels mankind to live together in cooperative social relations with a decent regard for the spiritual insight, mental attitude, rights, responsibilities, welfare and requirements of each other.

The ideal of service to others and the spirit of democracy are closely associated. In fact, to appropriate the words of a current popular song: "you can't have one without the other."

Our association of Rotary Clubs is not a democracy but it is democratic. How democratic it is or may be depends upon the amount of direct participation its constituent Clubs and Rotarians have in its control and direction.

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When I have said more democracy is needed in the Rotary Movement I meant more direct participation in its direction, by the constituent Clubs and Rotarians and more thinking and working together by the Clubs with those who represent them in the administration of the Association.

(b) Present form of democracy in the Rotary movement

At the present the supreme control of the Association remains in its member Clubs through their delegates in Convention. Practically the control is in the personnel of the agencies they have created.

In the operation of the Association the member Clubs have representative participation through the services of the various bodies, officers, committees, agencies of the Association.

Convention programs are so organized that there is little opportunity for consideration by the delegates of matters pertaining to the administration and program of the Movement.

The extent to which the practical control of the association has passed from the Clubs is indicated by a review of the present agencies of the Association :


The members of each Club elect their delegates (or designate proxies for them) to the Convention. The Association president,

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vice-presidents, secretary, treasurer (all ex officio) and the sergeant-at-arms (appointed by the President) are the officers of the Convention. Its committees are appointed by the president.


is composed of the district governors-nominee, the officers and directors of the Association, others ex officio, and others designated by the board of directors of the Association.


District Conferences are organized and conducted by the district governors who appoint their committees. Regional Conferences are organized by the Secretariat and conducted by the President of the Association who appoints their committees.


are organized and conducted by the district governors who appoint their committees.


The president and immediate past president are ex officio members; 5 members are nominated by the board itself; one by the conference of Clubs in Britain and Ireland; 5 by the delegates from the Clubs in the USA at the Convention; one by the delegates from the Clubs in Canada at the Convention.

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The president is nominated by a committee (see below) of eleven members and elected by the Convention. (Any Club may also nominate but it is not unusual for a Club to do so.) The 3 vice presidents and the secretary are elected by the board of directors; the treasurer is nominated from the floor of the Convention. and elected by the Convention. (Usually there is only one nomination.)


Each district governor is nominated by vote of the delegates from the Clubs of his district at the District Conference. (Some districts have a committee to propose a candidate and in such a case a Club may also make a proposal but it is not usual for a Club to do so.)


The personnel of the committees (with some exceptions) is appointed by the president of the Association.


The personnel of district committees (with some exceptions) is appointed by the district governors.


One member from each of the approximately 250 districts is elected at district confer-

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ences by the delegates from the Clubs of the district (only past officers of the Association eligible .for election); 6 members are appointed by President of Association; about 40 ex officio members (not all voting). Presiding chairman appointed by President.


Composed of 6 members ex officio as directors or committee chairmen of the Association; 5 members elected at the Convention by delegates from the Clubs of the USA (only past directors of the Association eligible for election).


All appointed by the president of the Association. By established custom all appointments limited to past presidents of the Association.


All ex officio.


is presided over by the secretary as managing officer of the Association. He appoints the members of the secretariat staff.


The editors of the magazines are appointed by the secretary of the Association.

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All are appointed by the president of the Association.

(All officers and directors of the Association are elected at the Convention by the delegates from all countries and geographical regions in which there are Rotary Clubs instructing the Secretary to cast their united ballots for them. This is a pro forma procedure of election as at that time there is only one nominee for each office.)

When in 1910 the first sixteen autonomous democratic Rotary Clubs decided to federate themselves in a democratic Association it was impossible for their then some 1800 members to assemble as one body.

So first the members of each Club voted to federate (direct participation) and then elected their delegates (direct participation) to attend the Convention and implement the decision of the Clubs (representative participation).

For a number of years the Clubs continued to be interested in their federal relationship with the Association administration as a clearing house for their ideas, sent their delegates to subsequent Conventions there to discuss the affairs of the Association, discuss and enact legislation, nominate and elect officers, select Convention cities, establish procedures, etc.

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In the spirit of democracy Rotarians who were not accredited delegates were not only encouraged to attend the Conventions but at them were permitted to participate in the discussion of Association affairs and the development of conclusions as to them.

When in 1922 the member Clubs changed the name of the Association to "Rotary International" they did not thereby change its character.

However through the years, due to thoughts of more efficiency in the operation of the Association, there has been a gradual but cumulative increase in its centralized character.

While retaining certain rights in principle the constituent Clubs in practice ceased to exercise them. For example, they turned over to a committee the selection of the President, to Board the selection of some of its members, the election of the vice-presidents, the selection of convention cities, the organizing of convention programs.

The drift toward centralizing included a lessening in the consideration and discussion of Association affairs by the delegates of the Clubs at Conventions, a slackening of the interest of the older Clubs in the Association and a failure of newer Clubs to acquire one.

A few years ago the Clubs even thoughtlessly renounced their duty to be represented by

delegate or proxy at the annual Conventions but that action was soon reconsidered and at a subsequent Convention they reasserted that duty.

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The depression and Second World War periods may have had something to do with the disinclination of Clubs to feel a responsibility for the operation of the Association,

Rotarians in the larger Clubs likewise have become inclined to "leave everything to the Board" which means representative participation of their members in the administration of their Clubs. They have empowered the Board, or by their indifference permitted it, to act for them in all matters including the functioning of the Club as a constituent member of the Association. Club business meetings are considered impossible. "The members will not attend them." "They interfere with the plans of the program committee." "They will be discourteous to visiting Rotarians who come to hear a good speaker."

Altho they may be inclined to follow the example of the larger Clubs there probably is considerable direct participation in the smaller Clubs where the entire membership can more easily take part in the discussion of and decisions as to the Club activities, in the examination of proposed Association legislation, the proposal of candidates for some Association offices and committees, the election of the Club's delegate(s) to Conferences and Conventions.

Unfortunately the standard Club constitution provides that the board of directors shall be the governing, instead of the administrative, bogy of a Rotary Club.

A general recognition and acceptance of the basic objective of the Movement may cause a

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resurgence of democratic interest in the Association by its member Clubs; or the development of Club interest in Association matters may cause a recognition and acceptance of the Movement's basic objective.

Opportunities for direct participation by Clubs and Rotarians are suggested in the next Section of this communication.

(c) preserving direct participation

In any democratic grouping the more direct participation there is by its constituents the more the spirit of democracy prevails in the groupings.

Rotary Clubs (the Rotarians in them) should preserve all their present opportunities for direct participation in the control and direction of the Association. To do so they should faithfully and intelligently avail themselves of every opportunity for participation.

If actively interested in his Club a Rotarian will become informed as to its duties and responsibilities as a constituent member of a world wide Association, and be prepared to participate in Club discussions of matters pertaining to the program and administration of the Association.

He also becomes qualified to serve as a delegate from his Club to conferences and conventions, and to take his turn as an officer of the Association. Not everyone will be called to such service but in the spirit of democracy all Rotarians should be prepared for such a call.

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If Rotarians in general shy away from being thus prepared the Movement may eventually drift into having an Officer caste, a higher echelon of Rotarians who are assumed to be the only ones capable of serving as officers or committeemen of the Association. If that ever happens the democratic character of the Movement will indeed be lost.

VOTING FOR REPRESENTATIVES. In a democratic grouping the election of the representatives of its collectivity, or of any sub-collectivity of it, is an important fundamental procedure requiring direct participation by its constituents,

The Rotarians of each Club elect its officers and directors.

They elect the Club's delegate(s) to the District Conference to vote there as the Club desires in the election of the District Governor-Nominee and the member of the Council on Legislation.

They elect their Club's delegate(s) to the Convention (or appoint as proxy(s) Rotarians of other Clubs who will know the sentiment of the Club with regard to the nomination of a Director of the Association and the election of a member of the Nominating Committee.

There are also the following four opportunities for direct participation by Clubs (that is the Rotarians in them) in making nominations or proposals or taking other preliminary steps

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leading up to the selection of Association officers or committeemen.

DISTRICT GOVERNOR. The Governor is nominated annually by the delegates from the Clubs at their by District Conference. Any Rotarian of the District is eligible for nomination.

A Club should decide upon a qualified Rotarian to be proposed by its delegate(s) at the Conference or decide which one of those proposed by other

Clubs shall be voted for by its delegate(s). If a District has a. committee to propose a nominee (as ours does) a Club should make the suggestion of a qualifies Rotarian for consideration by the committee.

COUNCIL ON LEGISLATION: A member of this important advisory body is elected biennially from each District by the delegates from the clubs at the District Conference. Only past, present or incoming officers of the Association are eligible
for election. Nominations are made at the Conference.

A Club should decide upon a qualified Rotarian for its delegate(s) to nominate or at least let him know for whom to vote among those nominated by other Clubs.

ASSOCIATION DIRECTOR (USA ONLY) The nomination for a Director member of the Board is made biennially at the Convention by the

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delegates of the Clubs of each of the 5 Zones in the USA (in alternating years). Proposal of a candidate for nomination may be made by any Club in a Zone on or before April 1st. Any Rotarian of the Zone is eligible for proposal and nomination.

A Club should propose a qualified Rotarian for nomination at the Convention or at least decide which one of those proposed by other Clubs should receive the vote of its delegate(s).

NOMINATING COMMITTEE FOR FRESIDENT {USA ONLY). A member of this Committee is elected annually at the Convention by the delegates of the Clubs of each of the 5 Zones in the USA. Nomination of a candidate for election may be made on or before April 1st by any Club in a Zone. Only last Directors of the Association are eligible for nomination. (There is a pending legislative proposal to make Past District Governors also eligible).

A Club should nominate a qualified past Director for election at the Convention or at least decide which one of those nominated by Other Clubs should receive the vote of its delegate(s).

The proper scheduling by Club administration of these four opportunities is important--two of them every year and the other two every other year.

Rotarians may be tempted to think: Why must I bother myself about such things? Why

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not let others take care of them? I'm sure they will do a good job. But others may not take care of them.

Moreover our direct participation in selecting those (through whom we will have our representative participation in the operation of the Association) will create a personal interest on our part in what they are doing and how they are doing it.

District committees to select the Governor-Nominee do take something away from the interest of Rotarians in their District Conference. Zone committees to select the R.I. Directors are being suggested by some. Next it may be District committees to select the members of the Council on Legislation. Then possibly Zone committees to select the members of the Nominating Committee for President. All such agencies are part of the drift toward centralizing.

If nomination committees could propose two or more candidates for each position to be filled the spirit of democratic election would still prevail--but we don't want contests. Isn't Rotary a unique sort of clubs? The ideal of service would seem to enable Rotary Clubs and Rotarians to conduct contests for office in a friendly and ethical manner.

REVIEW OF PROPOSED LEGISLATION. This is another opportunity for direct participation. The making of its laws and rules of procedure is a fundamental in any democratic grouping.

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The constitution and by-laws of the Association, its standard club constitution and supplementary resolutions as they are at present were enacted by vote of the delegates of the clubs in Convention. They can be changed only in like manner,

Every two years member Clubs and their District Conferences and the Board of Directors of the Association are exercising their right to propose the adoption of amendments of or additions to or deletions from this body of laws.

In the hands of the Clubs at the present time are some 48 such Proposals for review and recommendations by the Council on Legislation and for action by the delegates of the Clubs in Convention at Dallas next June.

The spirit of centralization would indicate that the consideration of these Proposals might well be left to the Council and the delegates at the Convention, However the spirit of democracy indicates that each member Club should determine its attitude toward the proposals for the guidance of its delegate(s) to the Convention.

As a matter of fact it is the law of the Association (enacted by the Clubs in Convention) that every duly filed Proposal to change the laws of the Association shall be communicated to all the constituent Clubs in advance of the Convention.

In May 1957 the General Secretary of the Association circulated a printed booklet

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of the current Proposals to every Club and he has several times reminded the Clubs of their responsibility to examine them.

The Rotarians of a Club can examine and discuss a Proposal and determine their Club's conclusion as to whether or mot its adoption in Convention will (for example):

be helpful to their Club.

be helpful to all Clubs in all regions;

contribute to the advancement of the Rotary Movement;

maintain the spirit of democracy in the Movement;

require additional financial support by the Clubs;

and whether or not its enactment is really necessary.

The administration of each Club must provide ample time, at as many meetings as is necessary, for the discussion of the proposals. It must also provide from within itself or with outside help the leadership required for the presentation of the Proposals and the moderating of their discussion

Two years ago tests made by interested Rotarians at a number of Rotary Clubs proved that Rotarians in their Clubs are quite willing to discuss constructively such proposals provided their intent and effect are made clear to them.

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The Club President should take the time, or get some one else to take the time, to study each Proposal and if necessary restate it in clearer terms for consideration by the members of the Club.

The Presentation of each Proposal should be made without indicating that the Moderator has arrived at a conclusion with regard to it, thus permitting the members of the Club to determine their own conclusion.

A Club discussion of these Proposals will enable the Club's delegate(s) at the Convention to discuss the Proposals there, to evaluate the recommendations of the Council on Legislation, and to vote intelligently.

It is also the custom for the delegates at the District Conference to explain the conclusions of their respective Clubs and this affords the member of the Council on Legislation from that District an opportunity to know now the Clubs of his District agree or disagree in regard to the Proposals.

Here again a proper amount of time must be provided for their discussion, and the

Governor should designate a Rotarian qualified to present the proposals and moderate the discussion of them without indicating his own personal conclusions.

Both in the Clubs and at the Conference the direct participation of Rotarians develops their interest in the Association.

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Things we participate in are most interesting to us.

OTHER MATTERS FOR CLUB DISCUSSIONS. For a Club discussion of an Association matter or problem it is not necessary to wait for a legislative proposal. There is nothing about the Movement that may not be examined as to how it is working out in practice, how it might be improved. For example:

THE DISTRICT GOVERNOR SYSTEM. This is part of the administration of the Association that was established away back, in 1915 when there were only two of three hundred Rotary Clubs.

Is it all that it should be in these modern times? Are the Clubs getting the kind of service they need from a District Governor--at least the Clubs in the older well-settled sections of the Movement? Are there other services the Governors might render to the Movement? Are enough younger Rotarians being called to service as Governors?

THE DISTRICT CONFERENCE. This is another agency of the Association that has worked well for 40 years or more.

Is it all that it should be for another 40 years? Is the present attendance at Conferences satisfactory? Can satisfactory places be found for holding them? Would a different type of program be mare attractive?

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Some earnest research on these subjects may result in the conclusion that everything is just as it should be and no change is needed for the foreseeable future (sputnik or no spunik). Again such research study may develop ideas for the future that will be as valuable as these ideas were 40 years ago.

I can recall when 25 or 30 years ago "more time for our problems" was an annual yearning of the members of the Board of Directors of the Association. It probably is the same today.

In making my suggestions I am not ignorant or forgetful of the devoted contributions of splendid service to the Clubs by the Association's present and past general officers, directors and committeemen. Rotarians on the board of committees give generously of their time and their best thought but they are active in their business or professions. They travel a great deal. They have much correspondence. Their meetings as board or committee are few and far between. They have plenty of current problems. The attention they can be expected to give to possible future problems of Rotary is limited.

Hundreds of Rotary Clubs as research centers for the future of the Rotary Movement will be of great help to those upon whom the Clubs place the responsibility of leadership.

There is plenty of time for the consideration of Rotary problems---100,000 hours of time each year in the meetings of the Clubs of North America alone.

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The Rotary Clubs are the grass roots the Movement. They are what makes the Movement warm and vital. In the Clubs also are men capable of thinking deeply and constructively, men who have visited other Rotary Clubs, men who have served as District Governors, men who have been or in due course may be on the Board. Aside from all that every Club has in it men of wide or special experience in meeting problems in other fields of activity.

There is great, potentiality in the Rotary Clubs. Awaken it, release it, put it at work for the future of the Movement.

How democratic the Movement is depends upon how willing and able To participate in its general control and direction.

Here are some other subjects, problems matters that should be of concern to the Clubs and might be discussed at Club meetings:

EXCHANGE OF BANNERS BY CLUBS. This subject may not seem of great importance to many Clubs at the present moment but it is something that may develop into quite a problem.

Some Rotary Club years ago devised a little banner representative of its country or city or locality, to be given to a visiting Rotarian or to be given to other Clubs by its members when visiting them, or perhaps both.

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Such a thoughtful gesture of Rotary fellowship has been adopted by other Rotary Clubs in various countries. Many traveling Rotarians are prepared with their banners to present to the Clubs they visit.

Tens of thousands of such banners have been distributed. Will the custom continue indefinitely? Must all Rotarians join in it? Certainly no one wants to suggest that such a friendly custom be discontinued but it develops some questions --

What should be done with banners received? Two or three or even a half dozen take up little space but a 1000 or 500 or even 100 create a different situation. How shall they be kept? How shall they be displayed? For the receipt of how many more must provision be made?

A British Club has suggested miniature banners not over three or four inches high--a traveller could more easily carry a stock of them with him--a larger number could be more easily displayed by a Club.

Should the receipt of a banner be acknowledged to the sending Club?

Can duplicates be declined or returned without giving offense?

Must a Club endeavor to keep a record of where its banner has been received so as to avoid duplications?

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Should the visited Club (perhaps every Club) be prepared with its banner to give to the visitor who presents a banner to take back to his Club? (Some visitors ask for one).

And should a Club wait until it gets before it gives? Should it have and present its banner to every visiting Rotarian?

This may be one of those things that on a small scale are interesting and commendable but may mushroom into larger proportions and lead to confusion among the Clubs as to
what is the proper procedure. What, if anything, can or need be done about this problem?

THE ATTENDANCE CONTEST. Here is something in which every North American Rotarian has a personal interest.

The origin of the Contest can be traced back to an idea 40 years ago that the attendance of a Rotary Club’s members at its meetings was indicative of other interest in the Rotary Object and activities of the Club.

So the Clubs were asked to report monthly to their District Governors, and through them to the Secretary of R.I., the attendance at their meetings which would enable the officers of the Association to note which Clubs if any, were in need of some encouragement.

On the whole the reports were gratifying and it was decided to publish a tabulation

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of them as a compliment to the many with fine records and an encouragement to the few with records not so good.

It wasn’t long before such publishing of the records caused the Clubs to feel that they were engaged in a "contest" with each other to demonstrate which ones were having and could maintain the highest attendance records.

In due course an "Attendance Contest" was officially recognized by the delegates of the Clubs in Convention who set up rules to govern it. Among the rules adopted was permission for Clubs to take credits for their records when Rotarians (for certain reasons) were absent from their Club meeting.

At subsequent Conventions other rules were set up; for example, the requirement that a Rotarian must be present a certain percentage of the scheduled time for a Club meeting before he and his Club could take credit for "attendance".

The excitement of a contest may present temptations even to Rotarians and to Club officers--such as a Conclusion that a little liberality in interpreting the rules is not really dishonest but if there are strict and liberal interpretations of the rules is it fair to all concerned? Perhaps the rules are not generally well known.

Furthermore the operation of the Attendance Contest and its rules has caused confusion with the by-laws provision that when a Rotarian fails to attend the required number

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of meeting, and the required percentage of them in a certain period of time, the Board of Directors of his Club by excusing him may enable him to retain his membership in the Club. However, doing so does not operate to excuse the Club, and its District, from having to take a corresponding debit in the Attendance Contest.

Preparing the records for the Contest must require considerable time on the part of Club Secretaries, District Governors, and somebody in the central Headquarters.

Is this Contest something fundamental in the Rotary Movement? Would the welfare of the Movement be harmed if it were discontinued? Is the welfare of the Movement being harmed by its existence? Do the Clubs want the Contest continued or discontinued?

In this problem the Rotarian has a personal interest, and his Club and its District a collective interest. It is a grass roots contest. The question should have an open and frank discussion in Clubs and at conferences. All its angles, should be studied before reaching a conclusion either way.

INTER-CLUB COMMUNICATIONS. When and if our Club is discussing a subject is it at liberty to communicate directly with some other Rotary Club to get its opinion on the subject? If it is discussing a legislative Proposal made by some Club may it with propriety write directly to that Club for its reason for the Proposal?

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About 30 or 35 years ago some Clubs were creating inter-district and inter-national embarrassments in Rotary by addressing themselves to other Rotary clubs on ill-advised subjects or in ill-advised styles of communicating.

In an effort to correct that situation the Club delegates at the 1929 Convention adopted a Resolution setting forth that:

A member Club desiring to request the cooperation of other Rotary clubs, in connection with ant matter whatsoever, shall first submit its purpose and plans to the respective District Governor or Governors and secure his or their approval.

This was subsequently interpreted to mean that any communication going outside a District must be first approved by both the Governor of the sending and the Governor of the receiving Club.

The effect of this Resolution was the discouragement of communications between the clubs and a weakening of the feeling of fellowship among them. It was one thing to write a letter to another Club. It was another thing to write a District Governor an explanation of what was contemplated, have him reply requesting a copy of the proposed communication, and when that was sent him have it returned with his delegations and editings, and then have to go through the same procedure with the other District Governor.

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Apparently sensing this result the R.I. Board subsequently made this ruling:

Within the limits prescribed by action of Convention of R.I. or by recommendations of the Board of R.I. it is permissible to circularize other Rotary Clubs solely on matters not affecting business interests.

Actually was any new permission thereby given? And what was meant by business interests?

Recently the General Secretary in referring to the policy of Rotary International in international service wrote:

There is no intention here to discourage widespread contacts among Rotary Clubs and Rotarians throughout the world—they are wonderful. However you can help tremendously by urging your Clubs to give careful thought and consideration to their proposed activity in light proposed established policy so that it will increase understanding rather than to develop further misunderstanding.

That is good sound advice for all Rotary Clubs but isn’t "established policy" still that 1929 Convention Resolution?

As this is a matter that directly concerns the Clubs it seems quite fitting that it should be discussed in the Clubs. Probably.

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some Club, perhaps more than one, will develop an acceptable statement on Inter-Club Communications the adoption of which would permit the retirement of the1929 Resolution.

CLUB CONSIDERATION OF PROPOSED LEGISLATION. What is being done now in the filing of Proposals and the communication of them to the Clubs is Strictly in accordance with the procedure established by the delegates of the Clubs in Convention.

If changes in the procedure are needed or are desirable they can be made only by the delegates of the Clubs in Convention.

A thoughtful analysis of present procedure might develop some worthwhile suggestions as to its improvement from the point of view of the contemplated examination of Proposals by the Clubs.

Can some Club suggest a method whereby the substance of any involved Proposal can be communicated to the Clubs in such simple phraseology and form as will enable the Rotarians in a Club to quickly and easily comprehend the meaning and purpose of the

The endeavor to do that might also lead to the suggestion of an improved style of preparing and filing Proposals.

Can a method be suggested whereby the proposer’s reason for making the Proposal or what it is intended to accomplish can be

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Communicated to the Club along with the proposal?

Is the present circulation of the booklet of Proposals being accomplished at the best time of the year and in the best manner to insure the Clubs giving attention.

VOTING IN CONVENTION. The present size of a Rotary legislative Convention makes it difficult to determine the correct vote including proxies when there is an evident or apparent close division on a question.

The Council of Legislation serves a very useful purpose for the examination and discussion of Proposals and the making of its recommendations to the Convention as to what action it seems advisable for the delegates to take.

Probably the greater majority of the Council's recommendations, always will be unanimously accepted and followed by the delegates or the negative votes will be so few as to be negligible. But there may have been a close division in the Council on a Proposal and a similar close division also will appear in the Convention. Or on some Proposal the point of view of many delegates may differ from that of the members of the Council.

Whatever the reason for the division among the delegates and proxyholders voting by printed ballot may the necessary to determine the result. There is an established procedure for use in such a situation. Is it adequate?

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Is the time required to cast and to count the ballots sufficient or too great?

Is the method of credentialing proxyholders satisfactory?

Would voting machine be successful?

Could IBM devise something that would be useful?

Is any other method conceivable for handling the situation without the loss of the spirit of democracy which is preserved by the voting of the delegates and proxies of the Clubs?

In suggesting topics or Club discussions it is not my desire to interfere, and I don’t think I am interfering, with the Administrative services of the Association’s Board, its officers, its committees, but to indicate how the Clubs can, if they will, develop among their members a greater interest in the Association. Rotarians in general should know more about the Association and have a keener interest in it than those in my Club or in any other Club, I believe, now have in it.

I am not suggesting that every Club shall try to file a legislative proposal for 1960. –That would create an avalanche of proposals that couldn’t even be read. Surely the Clubs can find a way to let their conclusions be widely known (perhaps through the exchange of their publications) and when it appears that there is a widespread interest in some change

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a way can be found to crystallize it into a well-drafted proposal by one or more Clubs for Convention action.

In giving attention to Association matters Rotarians certainly will not slacken their participation (individually and collectively) in the four lanes of club, vocational, community and international service. However it would seem as tho any Club could spare say one meeting a month to a well-planned discussion of an Association administration topic.

For many years the Secretariat of the Association has been producing very useful suggestions and material for Club programs in the four avenues of Service. Also for
special anniversary occasions. No doubt it could do likewise for discussion programs

on administration matters if the Clubs knew what they wanted to discuss and let it be known that they need some helpful suggestions or material.

(d) Why direct participation is important

President "Buzz" Tennent of Rotary International has given us all this challenge:

"The emphasis is on you, Mr. Rotarian, for you are the one who must give expression to the Ideal of Service by living it each day—by translating it into your life and the lives of others?

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The acceptance of this challenge will be direct participation, by individual Rotarians in aiming at a goal set up 34 years ago by the delegates of the Clubs in Convention when they sought to stimulate the acceptance by all non-Rotarians of the philosophy of service, both in theory and practice, as the true basis of success and happiness in business and life.

The Rotary Movement has been making some progress toward that goal as by precept and example it has brought its Ideal of Service to the attention of million of people but
at the same time the population of the world has increased by hundreds of millions.

The stimulating of a universal acceptance and practice of the Ideal of Service may be considered as laying a foundation for the efforts of statesmen to prevent hot wars and terminate cold ones. In fact it wiI1 be a basis for the solving of all problems of human society.

The multitude of altruistic activities thoughtfully and helpfully performed and being performed by Rotarians and their Clubs and their Association constitute a great volume of Service contributions to the betterment of human relations.

And the Rotary Movement is but one of many movements, organizations, institutions, and individuals, that are making, their respective efforts for the betterment of human society.

And yet what they and we are accomplishing is

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not proving sufficient to arrest the spread into all part of the world of a concept of selfishness dishonesty and brutality as a way of life which is being accepted, or submitted to, by hundreds of millions of people. It is evidenced not only in international relations but by the increase of crime, crookedness and violence in our own country.

To negative such an immoral or amoral concept of human relations the Rotary Movement has a proven prophylactic or antidote – the acceptance and practice of the Golden Rule of Service (thoughtfulness of and helpfulness to others).

To get this concept into the minds and hearts of say a billion people (starting with those in. our own. country) appears to be a very large undertaking. However Rotarians have long been and now are contributing to its accomplishment but they are not progressing fast enough. They are not keeping up with the tempo of the modern world. Their efforts (individually and collectively) must be extended and speeded up. There must be more enthusiasm for the undertaking. What has been accomplished indicates what might be accomplished. Further centralizing may improve the smoothness of operation in routine Association administrative procedure but it will not accelerate progress toward the achievement of the Movement’s basic objective. For that the intensive and constructive co-operation of the entire body of Rotarians is needed.

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Direct participation in Club discussions of Association affairs will:

1) Awaken a greater interest in the operation of the Association on the part of Rotarians in their Clubs.

2) Accustom the Rotarians in their Clubs to the contribution by them of practical ideas and suggestions for the general administration and program of the Association.

3) Condition the Clubs and their Rotarians for their planning of ways and means through which they and the Movement as a whole can make greater and more rapid progress toward the accomplishment of the Movement basic objective.

As we strive to do this we must also lift our vision beyond those with whom we have our casual .contacts, even beyond the business and professional men of the world, to the millions that can never become members of our Rotary Clubs, to people of every occupation in every walk of life, to those who in the final analysis will determine by their votes or their bullets and bombs or by their submission what sort of human society there will be throughout the world in another 50 years.

* * * * * * *

Evident control of the Association by its member Clubs, direct participation in its


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operation by Clubs and Rotarians, and other manifestations of the spirit of democracy in the Movement will not only facilitate the acceptance of its Ideal of Service by non-Rotarians but will be an exemplary encouragement of other movements, organizations, governments and groupings of human society to conduct their affairs in harmony with the spirit of democracy.



1. He is well-informed on local and world affairs.

2. He is courteous, unselfish, friendly gets along well with others – is a good neighbour.

3. He is sincere, dependable, and takes an active part in the church or religious community of his choice.

4. He appreciates what others have done for him and accepts responsibility for the future betterment of his community.

5. He is fair and just in his relations with others.

6. He obeys the laws of his community and nation.

7. He votes regularly and intelligently at election time.

8. He is interested in the freedom and welfare of all of the world's peoples and does his part to secure them.

9. He is productive - renders a worthwhile service to his fellow men.

10. He sets a good example to the youth of his community.

-Copyright, 1954, R.I.

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1905 - Rotary founded in Chicago by Paul P. Harris.

Membership limited to one man from each business or profession.

Name "Rotary" adopted, originating from practice of holding meetings in rotation at different members’ places of business.

1906 - New club grows in membership. Intimate first-name acquaintance promotes fellowship.

Rotary "wagon wheel" emblem adopted, the first of many varieties of "wheel emblems" to be used by different clubs, until 1912, when a geared wheel was adopted, this to be followed by authorization of an official emblem (1924), a wheel of six spokes, twenty four cogs, and a "keyway".

1907 - First community service: Public comfort restroom installed in Chicago’s city hall

1908 - Second Rotary club is organized in San Francisco.

1909 - Club Number 3 organized at Oakland, California, which becomes first club to hold weekly luncheon meetings regularly.

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1909 – additional clubs are started in Seattle, Los Angeles, New York City and Boston.

1910 - Wide interest beginning to be manifested in new service club. Year marks organization of sixteen existing clubs into a united body: The National Association of Rotary Clubs.

Rotary "principles" adopted in form of five objectives, subsequently to be changed from year to year until (1921) when a new objective was adopted "to emphasis the international influence of Rotary," forerunner of Rotary’s famed "Fourth Object."

Rotary became international when club is started in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

1911 – Rotary idea spans the Atlantic when clubs are started in Dublin, London and Belfast.

"The National Rotarian" takes birth, forerunner pf "The Rotarian" (1911) and the Spanish edition "Revista Rotaria" (1933).

At the Portland, Oregon (U.S.A.) Convention, the phrase "He Profits Most Who Serves Best" is added to the "Rotary Platform," later to become, through wide usage, Rotary’s unofficial motto.

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1912 – Canadian (Winnipeg) delegates appear at Duluth (U.S.A.) convention; London, England club cables for membership.

Constitution is revised; name changed to: International Association of Rotary Clubs..

First districts (then called divisions) are established, 5 in U.S.A., 2 in Canada, 1 in Britain and Ireland.

Rotary Census: 50 clubs; 5,000 members.

1913 – Rotary clubs contribute active relief service and more than $25,000 for victims of Ohio and Indiana, U.S.A. floods.

For the first time, delegates from Britain and Ireland attend convention in Buffalo, New York, U.S.A.

1914 – World War I begins in Europe.

Club number 100 started at Phoenix, Arizona, U.S.A.

1915 – Was service of clubs in Great Britain and Ireland intensified: Entertainments for wounded soldiers; combat battalions raised; Rotary’s companies of special constabulary organized.

New standard club constitution and model bylaws. Adopted at the San Francisco convention for all new as

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1915 – well as existing clubs, includes a provision for "additional active members", previously known as partnership, associate, second active member.

The "Rotary Code of Ethics" was adopted and during subsequent years came into wide usage until general distribution was discontinued (1927-28).

Rotary system of districts is enlarged and term "District Governor" is established.

Charter No. 200 issued to new Club organized at Columbus, Ga., U.S.A.

1916 – El Club Rotario de la Habana is started in the capital of Cuba, first to be organized in a non-English speaking country.

Attendance contest inaugurated.

Boys Work initiated on Rotary-wide scale.

1917 – Endowment Fund, forerunner of the Rotary Foundation, established.

Interest of Rotary clubs in work for croppled children is aroused.

The 300th Rotary Club organized at Huntington, Ind., U.S.A.

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1918 - "Win the War" convention held at Kansas City, Mo., U.S.A.

First club to be organized in South America is started at Montevideo, Uruguay.

The 400th Rotary club organized at Fort Scott, Kansas, U.S.A.

Total membership passes 40,000 mark.

"Allied Rotary Club of France" for Rotarians in armed services, forerunner of the Paris Rotary Club, started three years later.

1919 - Rotary extended to Philippine Islands, China, Panama, India, The Argentine.

Roll of countries in which there are clubs now fifteen.

Fremont, Nebraska, U.S.A. receives Charter No. 500.

1920 – Rotary club started at Madrid, Spain – first to be organized in Continental Europe.

Rotary Club of New York City holds first "Boys Week" observance, an event destined to extend rapidly to many countries.

First club organized in Japan, at Tokyo.

1921 – The 1000th Rotary club is started in the ancient city of York, England.

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1921- Rotarians James W. Davidson, of Calgary and J. Layton Ralston, of Halifax, appointed as commissioners to organize clubs in Australia and New Zealand. First clubs started at Melbourne and Wellington.

"International goodwill and peace" objective adopted at Edinburgh convention, first convention to be held outside the United States of America.

The Wheel moves On! Clubs organized in South Africa, France, Mexico, Peru, Denmark, and Newfoundland.

1922 – Association Constitution and By-Laws completely revised; name shortened to "Rotary International"; adoption of standard club constitution made mandatory for all new clubs subsequently organized.

Clubs organized for the first time in Brazil, Norway, and The Netherlands.

1923 – President Warren G. Harding (U.S.A.) addressing the Rotary Convention at St. Louis, Mo., says: "If I could plant Rotary in every community throughout the world, I would do it, and then I would guarantee the tranquility and the forward march of the world."

Rotary policy on community service (famous Resolution 34) more clearly established.

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1923 – Movement first initiated to encourage members to have their business and craft associations adopt "codes" or "standards of practice" based upon a "model code" suggested by Rotary.

Rotary started in three additional countries: Belgium, Italy and Chile.

1924 - Rotary clubs stated in Switzerland Bermuda. Total membership passes the 100,000 mark.

1925- Rotary Charter No. 2000 issued to Ketchikan, Alaska.

Rotary extended to five additional countries: Czechoslovakia, Guatemala, Austria, Portugal.

Branch office of Rotary International established in Zurich, Switzerland.

1926 – First "Pacific Rotary Conference" held at Honolulu, with more than 400 present from eight countries.

Clubs started in Sweden, Finland, and Columbia.

1927 – "Great Rotarian Ideal," reaffirmed by King Albert in officially opening the eighteenth convention at Ostend: "The great Rotarian ideal, essentially a humanitarian ideal of brotherhood, may have an efficient application in the board sphere of international relationship. Friendliness in international relations can be fostered by friendliness in international trade."

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1927 – 3000th Rotary club organized at Talca, Chile.

Seven additional countries come within Rotary’s friendly sphere of influence: Paraguay, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Ecuador, Bolivia, Germany and Java.

1928 – James W. Davidson of Calgary, Canada appointed to carry Rotary idea to countries of the Orient. Travels by plane, by train, by bus, by caravan; is impressed, in his contacts, by Rotary genius for common community good.

Second Pacific Regional Conference is held in Tokyo.

First club started in Federated Malay States.

1929 – Rotarian Davidson’s energy, enthusiasm etc. reflected in new clubs in: Egypt, Palestine, Ceylon, and Burma.

First clubs also appear in Nicaragua, Yugoslavia, Romania and Luxembourg.

1930 – Silver Anniversary convention held in Chicago, Rotary’s birthplace, with more than 11,000 registered, from 58 countries, breaking all records.

Past service Membership made available to members upon retirement from active business or professional life.

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1930 – First regional conference for Europe, Africa, Asia Minor meets at The Hague with 800 members present from 23 countries.

150,000 mark in membership passed.

"Jim" Davidson's magic hand creates more clubs - in Algeria, Morocco, Southern Rhodesia, Straits Settlements, Kenya, and Siam.

First club also started in Estonia.

1931 – Rotary’s twenty-second annual convention meets in Vienna.

World depression reflected in loss of eighteen clubs, largest loss to-date.

Clubs started in Poland, Hong Kong, Lebanon, and Danzig.

1932 – Worldwide depression results in first net loss (annual) in Rotary history: 27 clubs terminated; decrease in membership 2,000.

Branch office of Rotary International’s Secretariat for Middle Asia authorized; eventually established in Singapore (1935), relocated later in Bombay (1939), closed in 1942.

First club started in Latvia.

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1933 – "Revista Rotaria," Spanish edition of "The Rotarian," established for Rotarian in Ibero-America.

First club started in Bulgaria.

Loss in membership suffered for second year, partly offset organization of 107 new clubs.

A short business "creed" called the "Four-Way Test", is adopted by Rotarian Herbert J. Taylor of Chicago, and associates, subsequently to enjoy wide usage amongst Rotary clubs and Rotarians.

1934 – First Council on Legislation held as integral part of annual convention.

First "Institute of Internaitonal Relations" sponsored by Rotary club of Nashville, Tenn., U.S.A., forerunner of thousands of Institutes of International Understanding sponsored by Rotary Clubs.

Rotary extends to Lithuania; Iceland.

1935 - President Lazaro Cardenas, addressed more than 5,000 delegates and guests in the Palace of Fine Arts in Mexico City, extends official welcome to Rotary’s 26th annual convention.

Rotary’s "Objects" revised from six to four.

First club started in Tunisia.

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1936 – First regional conference in South America at Valparaiso, Chile.

Rotary extended to Fiji Islands and Sarawak.

Rotary Charter No. 4,000 issued to new club at Hanover, Pa., U.S.A.

Plan of "Institutes of International Understanding" inaugurated.

1937 – General redistricting programme creating 23 new districts, changing boundaries of many others.

Rotary’s twenty-eighth annual convention at Nice, France officially opened by President Albert Lebrum, who extends welcome to nearly 6,000 delegates and guests from 65 countries.

Rotary clubs started in Netherlands West Indies, Monaco, Syria and Venezuala.

As a result of pressure by Nazi authorities, forty-two clubs in Germany and the club in Danzig disbanded.

1938 – Rotary passes the 200,000 mark in membership.

Rotary clubs in Austria (11) and Italy (34) disbanded, grim prelude to what was to occur the next five years in 33 other countries invaded by Axis armies or coming

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1938 – within their orbit of influence, resulting eventually in at least the temporary loss of a total of 484 clubs, 16,700 members.

First Middle Asia Regional Conference held at Penang, Straits Settlements.

Rotary extended to Anglo-Egyptian Sudan and Cyprus.

1939 – The loss of clubs and members in Axis and Axis-dominated countries so far more than offset by admission of clubs in other countries and by membership increases in already existing clubs throughout the world.

First club started in French West Africa and on Island of Guam.

"Senior Active" membership established for members of long service desiring to relinquish their classifications to younger men, but still retain their own club membership.

Rotary Charter No. 5,000 issued to Rockmart, Ga., U.S.A.

1940 – Rotary clubs in Great Britain gird themselves for war service as war conflagration spreads throughout Europe.

At the thirty-first annual convention at Havana, delegates representing Rotary in 32 countries authorize a contribution of $50,000 from surplus

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1940 – funds for direct was relief through Red Cross; also establishment of Rotary Relief Fund to help alleviate suffering of Rotarians and their families due to the war.

1941 – Through Relief Fund contributions, food parcels sent monthly to Rotarians in European prison camps.

Clubs continue to be disbanded in Axis-dominated countries, but organization of clubs in other countries continue to offset losses.

In neutral Switzerland, clubs begin organizing relief measures for Belgian and French refugees.

In China, 7 out of 18 clubs courageously "carry on", contributing heavily to war relief, entertaining British (and later American) fliers, and maintaining refugee camps.

Committee to study the requirements for a post-war peaceful world is established.

1942 – War service, already initiated and underway.

Co-operation in war rationing measures; salvaging and fund-raising campaigns; raising and equipping of air combat units; including cadet corps; organized entertainments for wounded service men; providing and equipping of "recreation rooms" for service men; increased-food

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1942 – production campaigns; and numerous activities for raising civilian and military morale.

In the semi-dark malodorous tunnel of Corregidor, shortly before its fall (May 6th), seven Rotarians met, ramnant of the Rotary Club of Manila. Among them, its President Hugo Miller, who had escaped Manila in a small boat a short time previous to the meeting, and short time previous to the meeting, and Carlos P. Romulo, past president of Manila Rotary and former Rotary International Vice-President and Director. With the butt of an army pistol, President Miller rapped for order, called for the first item of business, which was: to confer honorary membership on General Douglas MacArthur.

Second series of "The American Speak" radio programs broadcast by clubs in the Americas.

Chesley R. Perry, long-time secretary of Rotary International (since 1910) retires, and is succeeded by Rotarian Philip Lovejoy, for twelve years the first assistant secretary.

1943 – U.S.A. War Production Board presents to Rotary International a citation in recognition of meritorious salvage work by clubs in the United States.

For the first time since 1939, Rotary is extended to another country – the Dominican Republic, where a club is organized in Ciudad Trujillo, the capital city.

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1943 – Finland – the Rotary Club of Oulu takes upon itself the difficult task of looking after boys and girls of their city who had been orphaned by the war.

While Rotary continues to lose clubs in occupied countries, such losses are offset by gains in other areas. Figures for the close of the calendar year show; 5,238 clubs; 214,500 members, of which 214 clubs and 7,500 members are counted "inactive".

1944 – Rotary clubs in the U.S.A., during March, set aside one meeting for a "China Day" program.

"Streamlined" 335th annual convention held in Chicago. Attendance restricted to officers of Rotary International.

First club started in French India, at Pondicherry, one of 169 new clubs admitted to R.I. during 1944.

In Sweden, more than 32,000 Finnish children are being cared for in Swedish homes, Rotary clubs assuming a prominent part in this great humanitarian work.

1945 – In March, the Rotary Club of Guam (American sovereignty proclaimed the preceding July 27th) is readmitted to membership in Rotary International, first club to be reorganized in formerly occupied countries.

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1945 – Two Rotary commissions for the Organization of Clubs intensify their efforts: By the close of 1945, 66 clubs ave been readmitted from France, Belgium, The Netherlands, Norway and in The Philippines.

Thirty-sixth annual convention convenes in Chicago.

Upon request of UNRRA authorities Rotary clubs (U.S.A.) asked to :spearhead" nation-wide used-clothing drive in April. Goal: 150,000,000 pounds. Destination : War-devastated areas throughout the world. Result: Goal exceeded by more than 350,000 pounds.

Forty-nine Rotarians serve as delegates, advisers, or consultants at the San Francisco conference of fifty United Nations, called together to draft U.N. Charter.

Rotary clubs throughout world observe week of November 11th as first "United Nations Charter Week."

"From Here On" published by R.I. containing full text of the U.N. charter, for distribution to all English speaking clubs. Great demand required six additional printings, totaling 230,000 copies. Subsequently published in Spanish.

Rotary Charter No 6000, issued to new club at Aleppo, Syria.

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1946 – Singapore, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Rangoon, Athens, and six clubs in Czechoslovakia, returned to Rotary fold.

Present at the United Nations General Assembly sessions in London are three observers on behalf of R.I., thus maintaining continuity of contact with the U.N.

The 37th annual convention convenes in Atlantic City, N.J., U.S.A., with 46 countries represented.

World-wide plan of Rotary Foundation Fellowships announced comprising awards for one year’s advanced study in a country other than that of student’s residence.

1947 – Founder Paul P. Harris passes away in Chicago January 27th at age of 79. Upon the death of Paul Harris the Rotary Foundation Fellowships plan is dedicated as a memorial to him. An auspicious start is made by the granting of 18 Fellowships for the scholastic year of 1947-48.

R.I. Board of Director issues call to all clubs to comply with mandate of 1938 convention to raise $2,000,000 for the Rotary foundation. Response is immediate and gratifying.

Italy becomes first of former Axis countries to be readmitted to the Rotary family of nations.

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1947 – Rotary enters another geographical region with a club in Macao.

The 38th annual convention convenes in San Francisco, California, U.S.A., with 55 countries and geographical; regions represented; A total registration of 14,678.

1948 – As of December 24th the amount of contributions to the Rotary Foundation since the death of Paul Harris (Jan. 27, 1947), is $1,480,033 bringing the total amount received since beginning of the Foundation to $1,773,000.

Thirty-seven Fellowships are awarded for the scholastic year of 1948-49 to students from 12 countries who will study in 11 countries other than their own.

$15,000 is allocated from Rotary foundation funds to continue work for relief of war-affected Rotarians. Assistance is going to 150 families.

Rotary Charter No. 7000 issued to a new club of Udine, Italy.

"Service is My Business", attractively bound book of 1`40 pages, explaining in practical terms what vocational service means, is published and enthusiastically received by Rotarians and non-Rotarians alike.

Page R-19

1948 – First international convention to be held in the Southern Hemisphere convener in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with an attendance of 8,105 – 37 countries and geographical regions being represented.

Board of Directors approves re-establishment of clubs in Formosa.

Rotary enters another geographical region with a club in Tanganyika.

1949 – Rotary clubs are re-established in Japan, Korea, Germany, and the Saar (as of 1st September).

Twenty thousands copies of "Service Is My Business" are sold in 18 countries. Book is translated into France, Spanish, Portuguese, and Japanese.

As of 31st December, $1,707,821.00 has been contributed to the Rotary Foundation since 1st February, 1947.

Four-Way Test Desk Plaque is made available for distribution to Rotary clubs.

"The World at Work", 152 page companion book to "From Here On!", published by R.I., cover the economic and social efforts of the U.N. and the Specialized Agencies, for distribution to all English speaking clubs.

Page R-20


1949 – Fifty-five Rotary Foundation Fellowships are awarded for the scholarship year 1949-50. Total Fellowships awards to-date 110.

As of 31st December, over 11,000 food and merchandise packages sent to Rotarians in war-devastated areas.

The 40th annual convention in New York City, U.S.A., brings together 15,971 Rotarians, including members of their families, from 64 countries and/or geographical regions. The largest convention in Rotary’s history.

1950 – The Aims and Objects Committee of R.I. is to be responsible for the development of service to youth activities and the R.I. Youth committee is discontinued as of 1st July, 1951.

Immediately following a disastrous flood in Manitoba, Canada, and the fires which struck Rimouski, Quebec, Canada, almost simultaneously, the R.I. Canadian Advisory Committee sends an appeal to all clubs in Canada to send contributions to the Winnipeg and Rimouski clubs. The response is immediate and generous from Rotary clubs in Canada and the U.S.A. alike – a grand total of approximately $43,000,000 being contributed. The Rotary Club of Dayton, Ohio, U.S.A., remembering a $500.00 check received from Winnipeg Rotary

Page R-21

1950 – back in 1913 to aid Dayton flood sufferers, sends a check for $1,000 to be used for flood relief work.

Contributions continue to flow into the Rotary Foundation. During 1950, $212,645.00 has been contributed by Rotarians from all parts of the world. This amount included a $20,000.00 gift from Rotarian Henry J. Brandt, Past President of the Rotary Club of Bakersfield, Calif., U.S.A., and a $10,000.00 gift by Rotarian Forrest Frick, also a member of the Bakersfield club. As of 31st of December, 1950, a total of $1,920,466.00 had been contributed to the Foundation.

Eighty-four Rotary Foundation Fellowships were awarded for the scholastic year 1950-51 to students in 23 countries who will study in 24 different countries other than their own. Total Fellowships awarded to-date 194.

Due to conditions prevailing in China, on 21st December, 23 clubs in that country

Are dissolved, leaving in operation – 6 clubs in China proper, one in Hong Kong and Kowloon, one in Hong Kong (Crown Colony) and one in Macao, Macao.

Page R-22


1951 – An additional $112,073.00 is contributed to the Rotary Foundation between 1st January and 1st June, 1951. Of this amount $10,000 is contributed by Rotarian Frank Jeppi of Bakersfield, California, U.S.A. Total contributions to the Rotary foundation since February 1947: $2,032,539 – the original goal of $2,000,000 being reached on 9th of May.

Ninety Rotary Foundation Fellowships awarded for the scholastic year of 1951-52 to students in 33 countries who will study in 20 different countries other than their own. This makes a total of 284 Fellowships awarded to-date.

The 42nd annual convention held in Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.A. is attended by 8,453 Rotarians and members of their families from 46 different countries.

1952 – As of 24th January, the Board of Directors terminated the memberships of the six remaining clubs on the mainland of China, leaving the Rotary club of Taipai, on the island of Formosa, as the only club in China. (The Rotary clubs of Kowloon, Hong Kong and Macao continue to function).

The 43rd annual Rotary convention is held in Mexico City; 6,800 Rotarians and members of their families from 53 different countries in attendance.

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1952 – Convention votes to build a Rotary International headquarters in or near Chicago. Plans drawn for building in Evanston, Illinois, U.S.A., and date of occupancy set for 1st of October, 1954.

For the scholastic year 1952-53, 111 Rotary Foundation Fellowships awarded to students in 34 countries who will study in 16 countries other than their own. Total contributions to the Rotary Foundation to-date exceed $3,200,000.00. Of this amount $10,000.00 is contributed this year by Harry L. Jones, President of the Rotary Club of Newton, New Jersey, U.S.A.

Philip C. Lovejoy, general secretary of Rotary International since 1942, retires as of 31st December, and is succeeded by Rotarian George R. Means, who had served as assistant general secretary.

Rotary enters another geographical region with a club in North Borneo.

1953 – Ground broken by President H. J. Brunnier for Rotary International’s new headquarters building at ceremony in Evanston, Illinois, U.S.A. on 3rd May, 1953, and construction begun immediately thereafter.

The 44th annual convention is held in Paris, France; 10,107 Rotarians and members of their families from 76 different countries in attendance.

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1953 – For the scholastic year 1953-54 – 101 Rotary Foundation Fellowships awarded to students in 32 countries who will study in 15 countries other than their own. Including the 1953-54 academic year, a total of approximately 500 Fellowships have been awarded to students from 57 countries. Total contributions to the Rotary Foundation to-date exceed $3,400,000.00.

Acting on the suggestion of the Program Planning Committee, President Serratosa Cibils designated the week which includes 24th October as World Fellowship Week in Rotary Service. Rotarians in every land are invited to a simultaneous demonstration of fellowship through friendly contacts and joint acts of service.

As of 31st August, there are 7,886 Rotary Clubs with approximately 374,000 Rotarians. Between 1st July and 31st August, 48 new Rotary Clubs in 22 countries received their Charters.

Rotary enters four other geographical regions with clubs in Northern Rhodesia, South West Africa, Surinam and Vietnam.

1954 – Cornerstone ceremonies held on 16th of May, 1954, for the new headquarters building of Rotary International in Evanston, Illinois, U.S.A. New building occupied on 16th August, 1954 by the President’s office, the office of the Rotary foundation and the central office of the Secretariat.

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1954 - For the scholastic year 1954-55 – 113 Rotary Foundation Fellowships awarded to students in 34 countries who will study in 19 countries other than their own. Including the 1954-55 academic year, a total of approximately 606 Fellowships have been awarded to students from 57 countries to study in 35 countries other than their own. Total contributions to the Rotary Foundation to-date exceed $3,600,000.00.

During the Rotary year 1953-54, a total of 487 Rotary clubs were chartered, the greatest number ever admitted to membership in Rotary International in one year. As of 1st July, there are 8,313 Rotary clubs with approximately 390,000 members.

Rotary enters another geographical region with a club in Brunei.

Fifth Regional Conference for the European, North African and Eastern Mediterranean region is held in Ostend, Belgium.

1955 - For the scholastic year 1955-56 – 104 Rotary Foundation Fellowships awarded to students in 26 countries who will study in 20 countries other than their own. Including the 1955-56 academic year, a total of approximately 705 Fellowships have been awarded to students from 57 countries to study in 36 countries other than their own. Total contributions to the Rotary Foundation to-date exceed $4,162,000.00.

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1955 – Among the major accomplishments to commemorate fifty years of Rotary service was the publication of the "Golden Book", a beautiful souvenir volume telling a fascinating story of Rotary events against a panorama of half a century; Rotary clubs carried on a vast array of worthwhile projects which had a tremendous impact in bringing Rotary to the attention of the non-Rotarians; a motion picture, "The Great Adventure", was produced to dramatize the Rotary story against the background theme of Rotary Foundation Fellowships; twenty-six countries issued postage stamps commemorating Rotary’s Golden Anniversary, an event unprecedented for a non-governmental organization; and, an incredible amount of coverage was received through the press, radio, television and other media.

As of 1st July, there are 8,776 Rotary clubs with approximately 414,000 Rotarians. During the Rotary year 1954-55, 473 new Rotary clubs in 52 countries received their Charters.

Rotary enters five other geographical regions with clubs in Angola, Belgian Congo, Ethiopia, Nyasaland and Turkey.

1956 – Rotarian Gian Paolo Lang of Livorno, Italy, elected President of 1956-57 at the 47th annual convention held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.; 10,689 Rotarians and member of their

Page R-27

1956 – families from 58 different countries or geographical regions in attendance.

First biennial meeting of Council on Legislation held in Philadelphia, preceding the 47th Annual Convention, in line with legislation passed at the 45th Annual Convention, providing for election of district representation on the council on Legislation and for the Council to meet biennially in even years.

Upon recommendation of the Board of Directors, the week which includes 15th November is to be designated annually as "The Rotary Foundation Week" to increase understanding of the needs and purpose of The Rotary Foundation by Rotarians and the general public.

Including the 1956-57 academic year, a total of approximately 883 Fellowships have been awarded to students from 61 countries to study in 40 countries other than their own. Total contributions to the Rotary Foundation to-date exceed $4,600,000.00.

As of 1st July, there are 9,140 Rotary clubs with approximately 433,000 Rotarians. During the Rotary year 1955-56, 375 new Rotary clubs in 50 countries received their Charters.

Following a couple of years of experimentation, one-day district institutes on Rotary Information are made a

Page R-28


1956 – standard part of the Rotary program. Especially qualified and trained Rotarians are serving as Counselors in holding these institutes throughout the Rotary world.

Pacific Regional Conference is held in Sydney, Australia.

Rotary enters six other geographical regions with clubs in Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Netherlands New Guinea, Ruanda-Urundi and Swaziland. There are now Rotary clubs in 99 countries or geographical regions of the world.

Hungarians revolt against Communist oppression.

Suez incident incited war involving Egypt, Israel and Great Britain.

1957 – Fifteen minute filmstrip program with recorded narration entitled "The Making of a Rotarian", produced and distributed to District Governors for use by clubs within the district.

A new approach to International Service launched with publication of materials describing how to stage an into-their-shoes conference.

As of 1st July, there are 9,507 Rotary clubs with approximately 450,000 Rotarians. During the Rotary year 1956-57, 376 new Rotary clubs in 41 countries received their Charters.

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1957 – Rotary entered 12 new geographical regions with clubs in British Honduras, Cambodia, Eritrea, French Cameroon, French Equatorial Africa, Guadeloupe, Liechtenstein, Martinique, Papua, Uganda, Virgin Islands and West Indies Federation.

For the year 1957-58 - 126 Rotary Foundation Fellowships awarded to students in 28 countries who will study in 28. This brought Fellowships awarded to 948 and contributions to the Fellowship Fund now have reached $5,360,000.00.

48th annual convention in Lucerne, Switzerland with 9,915 Rotarians and family members from 78 countries in attendance.

First satellite launched.

Sir Leslie Munro of New Zealand – Rotarian, elected President of U.S. General Assembly.

1958 – Upon recommendation of the R.I. Board of Directors, the week including March 20th is designated annually as World Understanding Week.

Asia Regional Conference held in Delhi, India – attendance 3,140.

Rotary entered four new geographical regions with clubs in French Guiana, Ghana, Laos and Madagascar.

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1958 - On July 1st there were 9,878 Rotary clubs with 464,000 members. During the Rotary year 1957-58, there were 388 new Rotary clubs chartered in 71 countries.

For the scholastic year 1958-59 there were 121 Rotary Foundation Fellowships awarded to students from 34 countries to study in 25 countries other than their own. This brought total Fellowships awarded to 1,069 and total contributions to $6,388,986.00.

The 5th Republic established in France under Gen. Chas. De Gaulle.

1959 - For the scholastic year 1959-60 - 126 Rotary Foundation Fellowships awarded students from 33 countries to study in 22 countries other than their own. This brought the total to 1,195 and contributions to the fund to a total of $6,527,465.00 as of October 12th, 1959.

Rotary world photo contest launched.

A new book of International Service "Seven Paths to Peace" published and "unveiled" at the New York Convention.

As of 1st July, 1959, there are 10,266 Rotary clubs with approximately 480,000 Rotarians. During the Rotary year 1958-59, a total of 506 new Rotary clubs chartered in 54 countries.

At the 50th annual convention in New York city there were 16,460 Rotarians and members of their families from 73 countries in attendance.

Page R-31


NOTE: The preceding 30 pages cover Rotary’s growth from 1905 to 1959. Then R.I. decided to discontinue this very interesting annual piece of information. We are hoping that soon R.I. officials will again pick up with 1960 and carry on annually.


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By: J.A. Caulder

Every man in this audience has, at times, pondered on, "How did Rotary start and how did it grow, from a group of four men in a very small office in Chicago who met on February 23rd, 1905 and organized a movement that, in 1963, functions in 129 countries or geographical areas of the world, in all continents and with over 11,500 Clubs having about 546,000 members?"

Would it not be interesting for all new Rotarian's to know just how it started and how it continued to live and what made it grow to be worldwide organization of very high standing?

Therefore, answering my own question in the affirmative, I make no apologies for going into considerable background detail.

We would not be here today if a baby had not been born in Racine, Wisconsin on April 19th, 1868. This baby boy was christened Paul P. Harris. The boy's father was an successful druggist. He was a fine man but a dreamer and more interested in inventions than in selling drugs. Paul had a brother Cecil, two years his senior, and a sister, Nina May, an infant in 1972. Paul’s mother was a Bryan proud family. Mrs. Harris taught school and also music. When Paul was three it was decided to send the two boys to their paternal grandfather’s home in Wallingford, Vermont.

(see over)

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In Paul’s book "My Road to Rotary 1948" he admits that the misfortunes of his parents likely proved good luck. for him as grandfather Harris and his wife were a wonderful pair of solid Vermont stock and Paul got a good bringing up. Cecil went with other relatives of his mother and we know little of him but he did some work for Rotary after it was well established and later was an organizer for Lions International. Paul’s family was reunited for a time once more when grandfather Harris established his son in a drug business in Cambridge, N.Y. This also failed and once more Paul was back with his trusty grandparents at Wallingford, Vermont. Later a third and final attempt at business was made, and another failure. Paul grew up as Vermont boys did in that era. He fished and hunted and roamed the bills and valleys.

Soon he was ready for high school and then a term at the Vermont Military Academy. The boy saw his parents only on occasional visits. Then grandfather told Paul he was to enter the University of Vermont at Burlington. After two years there a misdemeanor was committed by a student. Paul knew who the culprit was but refused to tell and was expelled.

In 1960 I went to Burlington and met Rotarian Dr. Geo. V. Kidder in order to get the true story. Dr. Kidder told me the offense was considered very serious but Paul refused to squeal on his pals. He spent a year selling Vermont marble. Then a year at Princeton followed by two years at Iowa University from which he

Page S-3


graduated in Law in 1891.

Paul had always loved people and he had decided to see the world and get to know people of other nationalities, colour, language and creeds before settling down. He cut can in Louisiana, clerked in hotels in Florida, sold marble for his old firm in Vermont; then crossed the Atlantic in a cattle boat. The stay in England was short as he had a return trip offered. A few more jobs and then back to .England on another cattle ship. This time he saw England, Ireland, Belgium, Italy, France, Switzerland, Gemany and Holland. Then back to Florida selling real estate.

A friend advised him to settle in wild but booming Chicago. He did this and hung out his shingle at what is now 127 N. Dearborn but in 1905 was known as "Old Unity Bldg." and he rented a very small room numbered 711.

When in Vermont, I went to Wallingford to see the Paul Harris Memorial. I had heard it criticized but I think it is exactly the kind Paul would want. It was built in 1818 by one of Paul’s ancestors but now is a Harris shrine and used for only special events. The grounds are well kept. There is a large stone in the front. yard, and on it is an inscription telling that this is where Paul Harris attended public school. There is also a monument in Racine, Wisconsin in his honour and on the entrance to 127 N. Dearborn a plaque to inform all interested. that this is where Paul Harris started to practice Law. Paul was a good

(see over)

Page S-4


lawyer but never grew rich as he spent too much time helping people who could not afford legal fees. Every Rotarian should read the article in The Rotarian following Paul's death in 1947 by his law partner Fred Reinhart of the firm of Harris, Reinhardt and Bebe. Fred and Paul were partners and close friends from 19l9 until Paul's death in 1947. Paul was recognized as an outstanding legal mind. In 1932 he represented The Chicago Bar Association at the International Congress of Comparative Law at The Hague. The Vermont university from which he was expelled, later gave him an Honorary Degree. In 1910 Paul made a fine deal when he married Jean Thomson, a fine Scots Lassie. Jean is now (1963) living in Scotland.

Chicago was tough in 1905 and the boy from Vermont found the going rather slow. He was lonely in 'Big Chicago' and missed his boyhood pals. He made fast friends and one was Silvester Schiele, the coal merchant, and Hiram Shorey, his tailor, and Gus Loehr.

One day an idea came to Paul. Why not form a little club w ere friends could meet? He mulled this over for months and finally discussed it with Silvester Schiele. It was decided to go ahead and the date was set for Thursday evening (there was much arguing over this date in later years but all the originals have gone so no one can be sure) February 23rd, 1905. There were arguments between oldtimers about whether these four met in Paul’s office (711) or Gus Loehr’s across the hall, or Si1vester

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Schiele's down the street, but it does not matter. None of them had any idea about growth so no records were kept. Paul and Silvester dined together at Madam Gallie’s restaurant down the street before the original meeting.

After several evening sessions it was decided to organize a club and call it Rotary as the meetings would be held in each others offices. Another reason was that membership was to be for a fixed period, so again the idea was rotating. This latter was never enforced. In these early days it was decided to have only one man from each business or profession. Also, a man must attend or get out. Also, Paul, remembering Wallingford where everyone used the first name in greeting, suggested the use of first names as it seemed the Fellowship way. Let me say here that nowhere in Rotary literature or Board minutes do we find any definite rule or legislation about this. It was just a custom suggested and accepted but it has been of tremendous value.

Silvester Schiele was chosen the first President, then A. L. White the second and Paul the third. He was elected in January 1907 and served for two years.

Early in the history of Chicago No.1 someone suggested swapping business and Paul’s article in the first issue of the National Rotarian, January 1911, shows him defending the business motive. I discussed this with Paul on more than one occasion in our long lose friendship, from 1919 to 1947, and he

(see over)

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told me that the Club could never have lived through the first trying years only for the business angle.

The Club grew very fast and by July 1905 had 19 members and the first roster was issued.

(The fifth man taken into membership was Harry Ruggles, the printer. No. 6 was Wm. Jenson and No.7 was Charlie Newton.

I have in my possession a printed letterhead used by the Chicago Club and at the top is printed the following:- Rotary Club of Chicago, organized by Paul Harris Feb. 23rd, 1904. After much argument it was decided this was a printer's error and no one cared very much.

Evening meetings were held on the second and fourth Thursdays in each month.

A Constitution and By-Laws was drawn up in January 1906. The Objects were:

1. The development of business between members.

2. The development of Friendship.

In 1908 a state charter was taken out and it was all in Paul Harris' handwriting.

At this times 3rd Object was inserted to read:

"To advance the best interests of Chicago, and spread the spirit of loyalty among its citizens

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This third Object was to counteract the criticism against Rotarians as back scratchers because only one man from each business or profession was allowed.

Charlie Newton, a great name in Rotary says: "When the club had 120 members I had all the insurance from 90 and Harry Ruggles had all the printing from 110". Each meeting a statistician read the volume of business done between members. Keep in mind that in the early days almost every club member was the sole owner of his business. To jump ahead a little, I want to say that in January 1908 two new members, were taken in. One Chesley R. Perry from the Chicago Public Library and Arthur Frederick Sheldon of the Sheldon School of Salesmanship. These names are written large in Rotary1s history.

Hiram Shorey and Gus Loehr dropped out in a few weeks. Wm. Jenson was very active in the Chicago club for years but the men who made Rotary, who laid the foundation, must be Paul Harris, Silvester Schiele, Harry Ruggles (No.5), Charlie Newton ( No. 7) and then a jump to January 1908 when Perry and Sheldon joined.

About this time there developed a feeling that Rotary must be a service club and not a backscratching club. This was a slow process and as late as 1915, when Howard Feighner was Secretary of the Rotary Club of San Francisco, his first duty after Grace was to step out to the check room and look over the hat labels to see if any member dared to buy a hat from other than the Rotary member who sold hats.

(see over)

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The idea has long since disappeared.

In 1906 a young Doctor, a club member, Dr. C. W. Rawley, had the bad luck to have his horse drop dead. The boys passed the hat at the next meeting and collected $150.00 to buy a horse. This was the first act of its kind recorded in Rotary.

No dues were collected until September 1908. Up to that date all income was from fines.

The first Board of Directors were chosen in 1906. The club had no office until The National. Association of Rotary Clubs was organized in Chicago in 1910.

Donald M. Carter suggested the club raffle the money to build a Comfort Station in "The Loop". Paul Harris in his book says that he suggested it but likely Carter promoted it. Anyhow $20,000.00 was raised and the Comfort Station is still in operation in the City Hall. So Community Service as we know it now as on its way.

The first emblem "The Wagon Wheel" was adopted in 1906.

Singing was introduced by Harry Ruggles in the winter of 1905-06 and the first song (ever at a public gathering) was "Let Me Call You Sweetheart". It was led by Ruggles and when the 50th Anniversary Convention was held in Chicago in 1955, Harry Ruggles, then in his 80’s and living retired in California, came back to Chicago and led the convention of 15,000 in the same song.

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One night when meeting in Bill Todd’s grain and feed store, a visitor started to tell a shady story and Harry Ruggles jumped up and led the group in a song. From that day on it was recorded there was no place in Rotary for shady stories.

The noon luncheon was suggested by Charlie Newton and started in 1908.

Ches. Perry suggested the members identification badges and Silvester Schiele the members' pictures in the roster.

When new Objects were written the clause on business was shifted from the top to the lower Objective.

By 1908 the club had over 200 members and was attracting a lot of attention.

When these four "Originals" started the Rotary Club in Chicago in 1905 not one of them knew that on Jan. 13, 1777 the Rev. James Woodforde (England) wrote in his diary "This day I joined a 'Rotarian’ Club." A1so Benjamin Franklin started a Juto Club and kept it going for 40 years. It was almost exactly like Rotary. Also in the early 1600's a Rota Club in London, England. They all died and perhaps we should remember that! Perhaps they did net have a Harris or Schiele or Ruggles, Newton, Perry or Sheldon. Perhaps they were all for personal pleasure with "Service" never dreamed of.

(see over)

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By 1908 Rotary was well established and things began to move. A Visitor from California attended the Chicago Club and when he returned to San Francisco he talked with a lawyer, Homer Wood. Mr. Hood wrote Chicago and shortly Club No. 2 was started in San Francisco and in a few weeks No. 3 at Oakland. Soon Seattle No.4, Los Angeles No. 5, New York no. 6, Boston No. 7. This was up to the end of 1909.

Harvey Wheeler of Boston had an office in London. Sheldon was there with Wheeler in 1910 and the seeds were sown. Stuart Morrow a former Boston Rotarian, went to Dublin to visit his brother-in-law, Bill McConnel and again the seed was sown. P.A.C. MacIntyre of Winnipeg was in New York on business and attended the New York club. He liked it so spent a day in Chicago with Ches. Perry on his way home. All this meant that Club number 35 was organized in Winnipeg in November 1910 and one in Dublin, Ireland in March 1911, also in London in 1911. In 1914 a club was organized in Tampa, Florida, and in 1916 the Tampa Club organized Havana, Cuba.

Early in 1910 it became obvious that there must be an association to unify the work of the existing clubs. They knew that Winnipeg was underway, and Dublin and London and for the first time Paul Harris began to talk of l000 clubs some day, etc.

This talk was to be on "How Rotary Started and Developed". I have covered the start quite fully and I hope also the development up to the first 8 or 9 clubs. It is interest-

Page S-11


ing to read the literature on the early days and to note how a half dozen dedicated men slowly evolved the idea of a club based on service to others instead of thinking of personal gain only. It is almost a certainty that had the changeover to service not began to sprout about 1908, there would be no Rotary today. In those early days beer and wine were served at the dinner meetings (after 1908) but soon it was obvious this must stop as someone always over-indulged. It was ended abruptly in the Chicago Club. When the Milwaukee Club was organized in 1913 beer was served at the luncheons. In this city babies were almost raised on beer but when at Houston, Texas in 1914 a resolution was passed by 85 Club Presidents to bar any alcoholic drinks at Rotary luncheons the International Board, with world expansion in mind, refused a convention vote an this matter, but simply recorded the conventioneers feelings that in North America Rotary would be helped by not having liquor or beer served at its luncheons. At once Milwaukee ceased to serve beer at luncheons and so have clubs all over North America.

The club at Vincennes, Indiana had the Secretary read a club by-law just before the speaker was introduced which said, "No story or joke may be spoken at this club which could not be said if all our wives were present."

And so those great men I have named and many others not mentioned made it clear to all that Rotary is an ethical organization. But for that Rotary by now would have likely been all but forgotten and the name Paul Harris would not mean what it means to us

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all today.

Just one more item about our founder. I asked him to come to our District Conference at Regina, Sask. in 1929. He was unwell but agreed to come. In those days R.I. had little surplus funds so when a man was invited the local district or club usually had to pay the expenses. We had Paul stay at our house where he could rest when he felt inclined. His address was excellent and at once the Calgary, Edmonton, Saskatoon and Winnipeg delegations asked him to visit their clubs and repeat the address. He reluctantly agreed. We arranged for the four clubs to change meeting days and he could make an overnight train trip.Our district presented him with a round trip ticket and a drawing room each night. In a week or so the Railroad sent us a cheque being a refund as Mr. Harris had changed all our drawing rooms reservations to lower berths. This is the kind of thing that made Paul Harris great.


Page T-1







Chicago, Ill.

Aug. 15-17



Portland, Oreg.

Aug. 21-23



Duluth, Minn.

Aug. 6-9



Buffalo, N.Y.

Aug. 18-21



Houston, Texas

June 22-26



San Francisco

July 18-23



Cincinnati, Ohio

July 16-20



Atlanta, Ga.

June 17-21



Kansas City, Mo.

June 24-28



Salt Lake City

June 16-20



Atlanta City

June 21-25



Edinburgh, Scot.

June 13-16



Los Angeles

June 5-9



St. Louis, Mo.

June 18-22



Toronto, Canada

June 16-20



Cleveland, Ohio

June 15-19



Denver, Colo.

June 14-18



Ostend, Belgium

June 5-10



Minneapolis, Minn.

June 18-22



Dallas, Texas

May 27-31



Chicago, Ill.

June 23-27



Vienna, Austria

June 22-26



Seattle, Wash.

June 20-24



Boston, Mass.

June 26-30



Detroit, Mich.

June 25-29



Mexico City

June 17-21



Atlantic City

June 22-26



Nice, France

June 6-11



San Francisco

June 19-24



Cleveland, Ohio

June 19-23


see over

Page T-2







Havana, Cuba

June 9-14



Denver, Colo.

June 15-20



Toronto, Canada

June 21-25



St. Louis, Mo.

May 17-20



Chicago, Ill.

May 31.

June 5-12-19


(note – 1944 and 1945 – very small attendance was owing to very strict war regulations re travel)


Atlantic City

June 2-6



San Francisco

June 8-12



Rio de Janeiro

May 16-20



New York, N.Y.

June 12-16



Detroit, Mich.

June 18-22



Atlantic City

May 27-31



Mexico City

May 25-29



Paris, France

May 24-28



Seattle, Wash.

June 6-10



Chicago, Ill.

May 29-June 2nd



Philadelphia, Pa.

June 3-7



Lucerne, Switz’ld

May 19-23



Dallas, Texas

June 1-5



New York, N.Y.

June 8-11



Miami-Miami Beach, Florida

May 29-June 2



Tokyo, Japan

May 28-June 1



Los Angeles

June 3-7



St. Louis, Mo.

June 13-


next page . . .

Page T-3







Toronto, Ont.

June 7-11



Atlantic City

May 30-June 3



Denver, Colo.

June 12-16



Nice, France

May 21-25



Mexico City

May 12-15




May 25-29



Atlanta, Ga.

June 1-4



Page U-1


Page 36

A club – Eda, Sweden – Eidskog, Norway has exactly half Swedish and half Norwegian members. The President is a Swede one year and a Norwegian the next. The restaurant where the club meets actually straddles the border. A motion made in Sweden may be seconded by a member sitting in Norway. Nothing could be more fitting when the feud between these two countries was so bitter in the latter part of the 19th century.

NOTEThe Boundary, The Rock Island Club on the border of Quebec and Maine is almost on a par but not quite. Also the Queenston-Lewiston club meets half the year in Canada at Queenston and the other half in Lewiston, New York. Members from the two towns make up the club.



(Toronto Voice – June 9/66)

Is it the Truth, the things I said,

And Fair, the things I did,

Or did I try to get ahead –

By keeping something bid.

Will it make as better Friends

And help to do real Good?

Perhaps the answer now depends –

Did I do the best I could;

Will it be a help to all concerned –

To my friends and other too?

It will if I live the best I’ve learned

In all the thing I do . . .

Page U-2



Take time to think: it is the source of power.

Tale time to play: it is the secret of perpetual youth.

Take time to read: it is the fountain of wisdom.

Take time to pray: it is the greatest power on earth.

Take time to love and be loved: it is a God given privilege.

Take time to be friendly: it is the road to happiness.

Take time to laugh: it is the music of the soul.

Take time to give: it’s too short a day to be selfish.

Take time to work: it is the price of success.

Take time for Rotary: 100% attendance.




STRIVE for a club membership that represents all vocations in your community. Fill at least three new classifications in your club during the year.

GET more young men into Rotary and give them opportunities for leadership.

TAKE Rotary into neighboring communities. Aid in sponsoring a new Rotary Club this year.

Page V-1



Year of July 1

to June 30th

Clubs at

end of year

Members at

year end

1905 – 1911






















































NOTE - On June 30, 1928





G.B & Ireland



The rest of the world




NOTE – In 1924 at the Toronto convention there were in attendance 9,173 from 1,796 clubs and 102,000 members. In 1964 the Toronto convention had 14,6111 from almost 12,000 clubs and over 550,000 members - - There is food for thought here.



Page V-2

Year of July 1

to June 30th

Clubs at

end of


Members at

year end

June, 1945



June, 1955



June, 1961



June, 1964



June, 1966



June, 1967



Apr. 1, 1968



June 28, 1968



June 3, 1969



Oct. 13, 1970






Copyright© Daniel W. Mooers

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