This meeting was our Annual Changing of the Guard!
Lori Walters began our meeting by reviewing Zoom etiquette and encouraged everyone to use the Chat feature to make note of their attendance. Our outgoing President Rosemarie Rowney officially called our meeting to order at 12:33pm. She began the meeting with an invitation to sing along as our talented in-house pianist, Tom Strode, played the National Anthem, our Patriotic Song.
Jim Irwin inspired us with his lyrical rendition of a ballad he composed – R-O-T-A-R-Y!
R is for Rosemarie – our President who makes lemonade when she gets !
O is for Objectives – we achieve them in our Club!
T is for Technology – we are served by using it effectively in these times!
A is for Ann Arbor – our Club’s service area!
R is for Reliance – on ourselves and each other!
Y is for YOU – the most important building block for our Club!
We were then treated to an awesome video clip of voices synchronized from all over the world singing the song, “It’s a Great Day to be a Rotarian.” What an inspiration! You can replay this clip by clicking this link.
President Rosemarie then thanked those who served at the meeting, including John White, Sara Maddock, and Lori Walters who managed set up, Dawn Johnson who managed attendance, and Fred Beutler who took photos/video, and Marlena Studer who served as Reporter.
We were reminded of the upcoming BIRTHDAYS of Club members and acknowledged esteemed Guests. We were also informed of the sad news of Chuck Olson’s passing. He was an esteemed member of our Rotary Club since 1975, served on the Board of Directors and honored as a Paul Harris fellow. He will be missed.
Presiding over her last meeting as President, Rosemarie Rowney introduced us to her family members, including her spouse Don Deatrick, her son Kevin Rowney, daughter-in-law Amber Rowney, grandchildren Tate and Caden and her daughter Michelle Deatrick. She then spent some time reflecting on her Rotary Presidency, gave high accolades to her outgoing board members Greg Stejskal, Ebru Misirle, Carol Senneff and Dave Williams, and warmly welcomed the new board members and President-Elect Joanne Pierson.
President Rosemarie gave us a quick summary of our Club’s Projects, Support and Events that occurred during her Presidency. Our Club’s Rotarians kept local, community and international projects going despite the challenges of Covid19 and gave generously to support those in need through events/projects such as the Annual Golf Outing, End Polio Now, Hurricane Dorian, STRIVE Scholarship program, Community Allocations, Rotary fights Hunger and the Covid19 challenge. We also came together to share good times at the Polio fundraiser, satellite meetings and our Michigan Union- Reunion Fundraiser.
President Rosemarie’s parting words brought tears to our eyes, as she gave us a heartfelt but urgent Call To Action, saying that, in her words, we must “…Pay Attention, Be Resilient, Continue to Care, Be Gentle, Be Kind, Listen, Learn and recognize the need for Change.
Suddenly and unexpectedly, Stephen Schram interrupted our Club’s meeting with a Broadcast of a Presidential Jeopardy game with some suspiciously familiar local contestants by the names of Steve Pierce, Norma Sarkar and Joann Pierson. Surprisingly, after a hotly contested game, our very own President-Elect Joanne Pierson won the game and went on to receive the Rotary President’s Shirt, Gavel and Bell.
Our new President Joanne began her Presidential year by sharing a poem she herself had penned, giving us notice our creative juices will be bubbling under her leadership. President Joanne thanked Ex-President Rosemarie for being the right leader at the right time – a public health professional who understood the challenges of the Covid19 crisis and led with grace under pressure. After welcoming new board members, President Joanne summarized her goals for the upcoming year, beginning with the challenge to “Make New Friends and Keep the Old,” inviting us to come together for service and networking but stay for fellowship. She also invited us to think of impatience as a virtue when it comes to making a positive change in the world.
President Joanne reminded us in all we think, say, and do of the value of Rotary’s 4-Way Test: Is it the Truth? Is it Fair to all Concerned? Will it Build Goodwill? She thanked Rotaracter Sam Talsma for help with her Powerpoint and finished by enthusiastically saying, “Let’s do some good work together and have a great time while doing it!” She left us with a quote that accompanied her father’s picture in his high school yearbook, “Anything worth doing is worth doing well!”
Our meeting was closed at 1:30pm