In the vibrant heart of Richmond, Rotary Richmond recently lit up the night with an exceptional celebration. Eight extraordinary Rotarians, whose combined service spanned an inspiring 302 years, took centre stage in a display of pride and joy. The ambiance was a blend of professionalism and delight with heartfelt speeches, laughter-inducing anecdotes, and a sense of camaraderie.
The spotlight was on these exceptional individuals: John Benger, Susan Bolton, Mark Dwyer, Ben Hosking, Aivars Lode, Judy Nettleton, Trevor Pang, and Barry Roberts, who had devoted themselves to the club's mission.
Each Rotarian was asked to reflect on their journey as a Richmond Rotarian, share a brief overview of key projects they had been involved in, recount a humorous anecdote, explain what they had gained from being part of the club, and highlight their most cherished project. Although they were given three minutes each to speak, the enthusiasm and passion of the speakers often extended their speeches, much to the audience's delight.
The speeches were a testament to the incredible time and effort these Rotarians had invested in various projects over the years. The humorous anecdotes not only elicited laughter but also showcased the genuine camaraderie that had developed within the club. It was evident that being a Richmond Rotarian had been a remarkable journey filled with meaningful experiences, laughter, and a deep sense of fulfilment.
Personal Growth and Development
All the speakers unanimously agreed that their membership in the Rotary Club of Richmond had significantly contributed to their personal development. Among the many benefits they highlighted, the opportunity to practice public speaking stood out. Rotary had served as a platform for them to hone their communication skills, enabling them to confidently address not only their fellow Rotarians but also broader audiences. This growth was exemplified by the club's successful Ainger Peck Public Speaking Competition for school students, which the Rotarians played a pivotal role in organizing.
The Four-Way Test
Trevor Pang shared a valuable insight into the enduring impact of Rotary on their lives, emphasizing the significance of the Four-Way Test. This ethical framework, which has guided Rotarians for decades, has become an integral part of their personal and professional lives. It serves as a moral compass, helping them make ethical decisions and maintain the highest standards of conduct in all their endeavours.
President Nia Holdenson's Appreciation
In her closing remarks, President Nia Holdenson congratulated all Rotarians for their exceptional leadership roles within the club. Their dedication had transformed the Rotary Club of Richmond into a renowned service organization with an honourable reputation in District 9800. She expressed her deep appreciation for the long-serving members, acknowledging the invaluable contributions they had made throughout their Rotary journeys.
A Legacy of Service Above Self
It was evident that these long-serving members had found enjoyment and profound fulfilment in "service above self." Their dedication to Rotary's core values of service, fellowship, and ethical conduct had made a lasting impact on their community and the world. The evening had provided an opportunity to thank them for their unwavering past commitment and continued contributions to Rotary and the Rotary Club of Richmond.
In celebrating 302 years of collective service, the Rotary Club of Richmond reaffirmed its commitment to making a positive difference in the world and to fostering the personal growth and development of its members. The evening was a poignant reminder that Rotary is not just an organization; it is a family of like-minded individuals dedicated to making the world a better place while cherishing the bonds of friendship and service that endure over time.