Just One Thing….How to be the Best Rotary District


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Here is an iconic scene from the movie City Slickers, where Jack Palance, as Curley, and Billy Crystal, as Mitch, discuss the “one thing” that is the true meaning of life.  Do you remember this scene?  The other iconic scene is Mitch explaining his mid-life crisis to his son’s elementary school class, but we’ll have to save that one for another post.

At the beginning of our first PETS training last week, I posed a similar question to our President Elects who will be Club President in the 2015-2016 year.  The question was, “What is the one thing that makes a Rotary District the BEST Rotary District.”  After all, I’m a competitive guy (so they tell me) and I want to be the best DG ever.  (OK…so I’m not good at setting achievable goals.)  Not to keep you in suspense,  here is what I believe is the only correct answer.  The ONE THING that makes a Rotary District the BEST Rotary District, is to have the BEST Rotary Clubs.  Pretty simple, for me anyway.

In District 7620 there is no “magic wand” for a District Governor to wave that does good in the world.  There is no Rotary team of employees who get the work done at the District home office.  This might be because we don’t have a District home office, and we don’t have any full-time employees.  (Actually Sherry Whitworth, our long-suffering District secretary comes close…but you know what I mean.)  The only thing that makes a Rotary District great is when great individual Rotarians, who are organized into great Rotary clubs, decide to do great things together.  Period.  The end.

At PrePETS our President-Elects for 2015-2016 got the good news and the bad news. The bad news is that being a Rotary Club President can be challenging if you want to effect positive change in your club.  And that’s because being a change agent can be a thankless job in any organization, and its especially so in Rotary where you only have one year to get something done.  And the good news?  The good news is that the only limitation to the amount of good that you can do is your own imagination, energy, skill, determination, and vision.  Let’s face it.  Being a Rotary Club President ain’t easy, but it can be the most rewarding job in Rotary.

So to that end, Training Chairs, Mary Nagle and Sean McAlister,  put together a terrific agenda where PEs got to meet each other by playing “Bingo.”  They then put up with a greeting from Yours Truly, heard from Mary about Six Guaranteed Steps to Successful Club Leadership, heard a fantastic panel of Immediate Past Presidents discuss the highlights, and the lowlights, of their year.  And finally had the chance to meet with their Area Governors to begin the process of building a rewarding relationship that will last them throughout their entire Presidential year.

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L – R: PDG Paul Frey facilitating the Immediate Past President Panel ofFred Genau (Carroll Creek), Mike Twigg (College Park), Stephanie Fenner (Olney), Mary Cain (Columbia-Patuxent), Tom Neff (Mount Airy)

So here’s my thank you to Mary and Sean for putting on a terrific PETS.  (Yes…it hurts my feelings that I’ve been a trainer for more than a decade and everyone said this was the best PETS ever!  I’ll get over it.  I hate it when people don’t realize how shy and vulnerable I am.)  And here’s my thanks for the PEs who have stepped up to be Rotary leaders next year.  They are a wonderful group and I’m fortunate to get to be their DG next year.

In the words of Immediate Past DG, Peter Kyle,…..’Onwards!”

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sean mary ken

 

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One thought on “Just One Thing….How to be the Best Rotary District

  1. What a great event! From the fellow Rotarian’s I was able to meet, the ice breaker process, and the training. Looking forward to the next Pre PETS!

    Russell Lacey

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