Rotary International News -- 2 July 2012    

RI President Sakuji Tanaka will encourage Rotarians to foster Peace Through Service in the 2012-13 Rotary year.

A new Rotary year is set to begin, and with it several programs aimed at helping clubs and districts enhance their projects, share information, and increase membership. In addition, a new group  of leaders will take over at the club, district, and international levels.

Sakuji Tanaka, of the Rotary Club of Yashio, Japan, will become Rotary’s 102nd president on 1 July and will encourage Rotarians to foster Peace Through Service. Read a profile of Tanaka from The Rotarian and download his convention speech.

Wilfrid J. Wilkinson, of the Rotary Club of Trenton, Ontario, Canada, will take over as Rotary Foundation trustee chair. Read his biography and download his convention speech.

Other changes include the following:

  • Beginning 1 July, The Rotary Foundation and the Water and Sanitation Rotarian Action Group will work together to offer resources and consulting services on major water and sanitation projects to several districts through a one-year pilot called the project enhancement process. These optional services will enable grant sponsors to tap into the technical expertise of their fellow Rotarians who are professionals in the field. To learn more, read these FAQs.
  • In order to focus goal setting at the club and district levels on membership activities, the RI Board has set a membership goal of 1.3 million Rotarians by 30 June 2015. The Board has also approved regional membership plans that were created by committees of Rotary leaders led by the directors in each region. Each plan addresses the region’s unique needs and customs. Districts and clubs are encouraged to use the regional membership plans as a guide in developing goals and strategies that are realistic and achievable and take into consideration historical trends and the opportunities within each region.
  • RI will be launching Rotary Club Central in an effort to measure the organization’s global impact. The new online tool allows clubs to set and track service, membership, and Foundation contribution goals.
  • Through Rotary Showcase, Rotarians can share photos of and information about their clubs’ service projects with the Rotary community and their Facebook friends. By indicating funds spent and hours volunteered, clubs and districts will also be helping track Rotary’s global impact.
  • A new convention website launches later this month, providing the latest news, travel tips, registration, housing information, and more on Rotary’s largest annual gathering. Register now for the 2013 RI Convention in Lisbon, Portugal, 23-26 June. The End Polio Now website will also be redesigned to include infographics, social media campaigns, status reports, and maps.
  • RI will hold three Rotary Global Peace Forums in 2012-13, each consisting of a two- or three-day program to engage and inspire Rotarians and community leaders. The forums will take place 30 November to 2 December in Berlin, Germany; 25-27 January in Honolulu, Hawaii, USA; and 17-18 May in Hiroshima, Japan.
  • The Council on Legislation will meet in April in Chicago to discuss and enact changes to the RI Constitution, RI Bylaws, and the Standard Rotary Club Constitution. The council meets every three years to review resolutions submitted by clubs, district conferences, the General Council and Conference of Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland, and the RI Board. The Council comprises more than 500 representatives from every part of the Rotary world.
  • As the Future Vision pilot enters its final year, Rotary clubs and districts will start preparing for Rotary’s new grant model, which launches 1 July 2013.

The RI Board of Directors will seat eight new directors 1 July, along with RI President-elect Ron D. Burton, of the Rotary Club of Norman, Oklahoma, USA. The new directors for 2012-13 are Ann-Britt Åsebol, of the Rotary Club of Falun-Kopparvågen, Sweden; John B. Boag, of the Rotary Club of Tamworth North, Australia; Jacques di Costanzo, of the Rotary Club of Marseille Phocea, Bouches-du-Rhône, France; Takeshi Matsumiya, of the Rotary Club of Chigasaki-Shonan, Japan; Anne L. Matthews, of the Rotary Club of Columbia East, South Carolina, USA; Gideon Peiper, of the Rotary Club of Ramat Hasharon, Israel; Andy Smallwood, of the Rotary Club of Gulfway-Hobby Airport (Houston), Texas, USA; and Bryn Styles, of the Rotary Club of Barrie-Huronia, Ontario, Canada.

The Rotary Foundation Board of Trustees will seat five new trustees, including Stephanie A. Urchick, of the Rotary Club of Canonsburg-Houston, Pennsylvania, USA, who has been appointed for a two-year term, replacing Anne L. Matthews, who is joining the RI Board. The others, who will serve four-year terms, include Ray Klinginsmith, of the Rotary Club of Kirksville, Missouri, USA; Michael K. McGovern, of the Rotary Club of South Portland-Cape Elizabeth, Maine, USA; Samuel F. Owori, of the Rotary Club of Kampala, Uganda; and Julio Sorjús, of the Rotary Club of Barcelona Condal, Spain.