Our meeting room filled up pretty quickly, and the energy level was high as Rotarians in the Best Club in the World gathered to meet and hear District Governor Laura Day as she made her official Club visit.
Earlier in the afternoon, she and her sidekick / driver, Winters Rotarian Cecil Padilla had met with our leadership team. In a one hour informal session she got to learn something about the unique character of our Club and our members. We told our hopes and dreams, and she supported our intent to do things “differently”, if warranted.
Polly McCall led our Pledge of Allegiance. Besides Laura and Cecil, Mike Diaz, past president of the Vallejo noon Club was our other visiting Rotarian. Guests of Rotarians included Sherrie Webber (guest of Carol Larson), Ms Sandra Marion (guest of Sam Thompson) and David and Kristine Passalacqua (guests of Gina Snyder).
With our visitors and guests duly and warmly welcomed, President Tom moved quickly to introduce our honored guest. DG Laura Day.
Laura led off her talk by telling how she and Cecil would be visiting the 71 Clubs of District 5160 by the end of January – that’s a pace of nearly 3 Clubs a week, and she didn’t actually start her program until August! Laura went on to describe in some detail the Polio Plus program,
highlighting Rotary’s success in immunizing kids and adults around the world. With just three endemic countries remaining – Nigeria, Afghanistan and Pakistan – Rotary International last year welcomed the support, both moral and financial, of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Laura went on to talk about Rotary membership. She encouraged us not to get too comfortable at a certain size, but to aspire to greatness at whatever size we can attain.
She encouraged all of us to register to attend the District Conference in Napa, 2 – 4 November. She reminded us that when Rotarians get together, they have fun and learn how to be better Rotarians all at the same time. District Conferences are a place to learn best practices in the whole arena of Service projects. Laura went on to talk about her District 5160 International Service project, providing dental hygiene kits and education to kids in Kenya. She will come back to talk with our Club as part of our audition process in looking for an International Service project to support.
In closing, Laura encouraged all of us to aspire to Club leadership. She told of the amazing personal growth she experienced once she became her Club President. She said that she had never once spoken in public before the took gavel in hand, but as a result of her experience, she is a self-assured and motivational public speaker now!
As an encouragement for us to attend the District Conference, which is based on a “Roman” theme, she demonstrated on President Tom, just how a toga is “applied”. The were more than a few good laughs as we saw our fearless leader dressed in a bedsheet!
Leter, when a few of us were enjoying a post-meeting libation, DG Laura allowed as to how this was her best Club visit to date. It’s like we say: The Best Rotary Club in the World!