The Rotary Club of Lexington recently conducted its annual officer transition ceremony. Rotary Assistant Governor Johnny Moore (at left) presided over the swearing-in of President Greg David (center) who is pictured with Immediate Past President George Stoudemire (right).
On May 23, 2013, the Rotary Club of Chapin Sunrise honored six area teachers of the year for the upcoming 2013-2014 school year.
Each teacher was introduced by their Principal and given a few minutes to address the group.
The teachers talked about their love of this profession and the rewards and challenges that come with teaching children at all levels.
Teachers honored included:
(1) Rhea Faris – Chapin High School
(2) Rachael Stenger – Alternative Academy for Success
(3) Patricia Shadwell – South Carolina Whitmore School
(4) Ryan Cole – Chapin Middle School
(5) Bandi Canfield – Chapin Elementary School
(6) Nancy Blalock – Lake Murray Elementary School
On Saturday, May 18, members from the Bluffton, Okatie and Hilton Head Island Rotary Clubs came together for a work day at the Bluffton Boys & Girls Club. Approximately 15 members or friends of the three Rotary clubs worked on some needed projects, including dismantling about 30 old bicycles, crushing oyster shells and making an oyster shell path to the new garden, painting bathrooms, organizing the library and painting outside safety posts. This is a true example of Service Above Self and working together to accomplish a shared goal.
The Bluffton Rotary Club celebrated the anniversary of its charter from 1988 on April 28. Included in the celebration were special guests District Governor Ed Duryea and his wife, Cindy; Assistant Governor Sandee Brooks and her husband Mike Rambo; and our incoming Assistant Governor: David Tirard and his wife, Susan.
The celebration of our anniversary included a Parade of Presidents, reading of the roster of charter members and special recognition by District Governor Ed Duyrea for John Kinzer and Michael Reeves, who both received awards in recognition for being charter members and still part of the Bluffton Rotary Club today.
A little history of the Bluffton Rotary Club and how we came to be chartered:
• The first Rotary Club was founded by Paul Harris & the first meeting was held in Chicago in 1905
• Rotary came to SC in 1915 when the Greenville and Spartanburg Clubs were formed
• The Columbia Club was chartered in 1916
• In 1920, the Columbia Club sponsored the Charleston Club
• In 1934, the Rotary Club of Charleston sponsored the Beaufort Club
• In 1967, the Rotary Club of Beaufort sponsored the Hilton Head Island Club
• In 1988. The Hilton Head Island Club sponsored and assisted in the formation of the Bluffton Club
And so on April 25, 1988, 29 men – all distinguished citizens of Bluffton – celebrated the first Charter Night of the Bluffton Rotary Club. Their first project was a community Thanksgiving Dinner and an oyster roast. The oyster roast has become one of the major fund raisers and a signature event of each Rotary year.
Over the past 25 years, we’ve seen a lot of changes in Bluffton and have contributed a lot to Bluffton. Some of our accomplishments include:
• Bluffton Rotary acted as the guiding force to build our Rotary Community Center & the “Field of Dreams” or Oscar Frazier Park, both of which have been turned over to the Town. The first gala to raise funds for the Community Center was in 2003, 10 years ago.
• We have been very involved in supporting many local charities, such as Boys & Girls Club, Bluffton Self Help, Bluffton Jasper VIM over the years
Annually, we support:
- Happy Feet
- Student of the month
- Rotaract Club at TCL and Interact Club at Bluffton High School
- Bluffton High Interact scholarship
- Christmas Angels program
- Ring the bell for the Salvation Army
- Support inbound and outbound international exchange students
- Help with International projects such as the Eradication of Polio & funding Water Missions
The Bluffton Rotary Club has shaped, changed or touched many lives over the past 25 years. By putting “Service Above Self” for 25 years, to help support our local community, our community has supported us in return.
On May 29, 2013 the Rotary Club of Lake Murray-Irmo awarded the Superintendent’s Scholarship to Eric Johnson. Eric is a graduating senior from Irmo High School and will be attending Midlands Technical College this fall. He is described as part of the new generation of learners. His goal is to obtain an Engineering degree without incurring college debt. Eric will be a great representative of Rotary during his college experience. Dr. James R. (Bob) Couch, Lexington and Richland School District Five Director for the Center for Advanced Technical Studies, also attended the presentation in support of Eric.
Also at that meeting, Dr. Barbara Brockhard, Principal at Harbison West Elementary School, presented Mark A. Sheldon to the club as this month’s student of the month. Mark is described as a thoughtful and generous student with straight A’s. He also volunteers at Palmetto Lifeline. The Rotary club was proud to present Mark with an award for “service above self” the motto for Rotarians and a gift certificate from Sonic the Irmo/Ballentine location who is delighted to reward students making great choices in our community. Mark’s parents, Christa and Randall Sheldon were in attendance for the presentation.
Rotary Club of Lake Murray-Irmo also recently awarded a scholarship to Michael Faikes. Michael is a graduating senior from Dutch Fork High School and will be attending the College of Charleston Honors College this fall. Michael has been very active in student government, civic organizations and athletics during his high school tenure and will represent Rotary well during his college experience. His mother, Michelle Faikes, attended the presentation.
District 7770 Gift of Life Program welcomed their fifth patient this year with the sixth and possibly seventh coming in June. Myrlande Milfort, 2 yrs. old,and her father Jamahel came from Haiti to Charleston for open heart surgery in early May. Her operation was a complete success and they will staying with several Rotary families during her recuperation period.
The Rotary Club of Lexington recently heard from Dr. Mick Zais, South Carolina State Superintendent of Education. Dr. Zais discussed the challenges facing education in the United States and South Carolina, while also providing practical solutions for many of these issues. He is pictured, at left, with club member Dick Thompson, right.
St. Andrews Rotary Club recently honored Brazilian exchange student Tassiana Pietra for outstanding achievements in cultural immersion and English language mastery while attending West Ashley High School this year.
Tassiana with WAHS Principal Runyon, wearing all the pins
she’s collected from her travels around the U.S.
Every year, the Rotary Club of Lexington returns thousands of dollars to the community in the form of scholarships for Lexington’s brightest high school students. After a competitive selection process that includes interviews with Rotarians, the students are honored at a Rotary breakfast.
This year’s recipients, from left to right, are Kelsey Raye Foster of Lexington High School, Holly Davis and Emily Rypkema of Lexington Technology Center, and Malcolm Ford of White Knoll High School. (Scholarship recipient Caroline Haggard of Lexington High School is not pictured.)