The Rotary Club of
St Thomas
12May21 Barbara reported about new programs
Ron rang the bell to open the meeting. We thanked Trudy for her help at the vaccination clinics at Memorial Arena. She is looking for volunteers to help with directing traffic.
Bob Patel attended and spoke of the meals he is preparing at the Wayside Dining Lounge for the homeless in St Thomas. See picture of Bob below taken from the Times Journal. This community support / volunteerism has drawn  3000 Facebook posts. Trudy helped with that too as well as the Horton St Market! Three Interactors also attended the first Market of the season. 
Report of casualties: Catharine broke her ankle stepping into a pothole, and the sidewalk in front of Malcolm came up to meet his nose (but his neck hurts most). May you both have a speedy and comfortable recovery.
To date there are 15 orders for tulips from our club (total 500 from district in support of Polio eradication). Submit your order to Gerry by cheque or etransfer (can be sent to:
Next weeks Zoom meeting will be with the District Link.
 Join us Thursday, 27 May, at 11:00 Chicago time (UTC-5) for the fifth webinar in our accountability and inclusion series, Building a Welcoming Community for People with Disabilities: register at: 
President Elect, Barbara spoke of an article in the London Free Press regarding Sophie Grant, a skateboarding Olympian who trained at the Rotary Skateboard park in Aylmer. See link: . There is a GoFundMe to raise $5000 to help with her costs of travel. Ron remembered the precedent set 25 years ago to support this kind of endeavour. A graffiti artist will do some official painting at the site.
There will be a Club Board meeting following next weeks club meeting.
Barbara noted that at a previous meeting we scored only 2/72 points for familiarity with projects from RI; have you completed her survey to see if your familiarity has improved? Apparently, we are not reading the Rotarian magazine.
6 projects that might interest us:
1.  Rotary Community Corps
2.  New Generations Service Exchange Adriana’s boys have tapped into this opportunity to see the world.
3.  Raise for Rotary This is a new fundraising tool that uses social media and allows supporters to donate online.
4.  Rotary Showcase – A club can submit to RI online info and media about a project they are involved with. This appeal to the Rotaractors but all clubs are invited to participate. 
6.  Rotary Virtual Reality App (editorial note: I downloaded the app but it could not find my WiFi and so would not play the video.
President Gerry lead a Jeopardy session about the history of Rotary, some of which Trish reported here:
23 Feb 1905              When did Rotary begin?
Herb Taylor               Who invented the 4-Way Test?
Arch Klumph            Who was the father of the Rotary Foundation?
Doing Good in the World      What is the Rotary Foundation Motto?
Happy Events:
Trish – Grandson Hunter (3Months old) is getting surgical repair for the hole in his heart.
Maggie – Grandson graduated from U of Arkansas with a degree in Finance
Bill – Maggie gets a new hip 2Jun in US.
Trudy – brother also getting hip surgery
Gerry – brother in law birthday, Catharine tomorrow (Happy Birthday in spite of the ankle), Catharine’s sisters birthday, Gerry’s sister also, a niece. Gerry and Catharine are longing to visit Holland again.
Malcolm – Donna’s birthday
Barbara – eldest daughter’s birthday
Nancy – It’s a privilege to have a birthday.
5May21 President Elect Barbara's History in Rotary
Bill and Maggie are visiting in USA.
Trudy is serving at the Memorial Arena vaccination clinic.(Picture bellow compliments of Trudy)
President Gerry (etransfer of cheque) wants your tulip order sooner than later; the maximum numbers available for purchase is 500, so don’t miss out. The ordering closes end July. $25 buys 25 bulbs per package which will arrive Sep/Oct 21. Ron wants some as prizes for our next fundraiser.
Malcolm announced the following opportunity about seminars sponsored by the St Thomas Elgin General Hospital Foundation. The Hospital Foundation knows how to use social media; maybe whoever set up their social media could help our club.
The Rotary International Convention is virtual this year; see .
Guest Speaker, President Elect Barbara Warnock (the youngest in the Picture below) and her History in Rotary:
On December 1, 1991 I became a member of the Rotary Club of Aylmer, part of the greatest organization in the world.
Joe Mennill, Past District Governor and the driving force behind the establishment of the Ontario Police College, had approached my husband, Bob, about becoming a Rotarian. He also mentioned it to me in passing. It was early days for welcoming women into Rotary. No longer did we have to accept secondary status as a RotaryAnn.  So on the night of November 25, 1991, I joined Marie Louise Borm and Shirley Fallowfield as the first three women inducted into the Rotary Club of Aylmer. The Borms had been active in Rotary for many years, attending international conventions and hosting Youth Exchange students. Marie Louise had accompanied Etienne to meetings following an industrial accident which left him with some brain damage. Certainly not enough to keep him home or to prevent him from expounding on any number of topics. Until the Aylmer club relinquished its charter, Marie Louise was an active member of the club.
Back in those days our club had a couple dozen members and some large annual projects, the least favourite of mine being Joe’s pet project, Easter Seals. From stuffing envelopes in his basement to canvassing the entire town door to door begging for donations, Easter Seals was a major fund raiser.
The Farmers’ Banquet required more man hours than I care to imagine and brought some incredible speakers to the town. We renamed it the Rural/Urban night in an attempt to bring farmers and consumers together but every project has its best before date and the banquet was quietly retired in the early 2000’s.
A major fundraiser was dumped in our laps when some irregularities in tallies brought the Aylmer Fair Board to us, asking if we would take over “manning” the Aylmer Fair Gates. We have many of the St. Thomas members to thank for your support over the years in this undertaking. My favourite shift was 8am – 1pm on Elk St. I was guaranteed to get in several hours of reading under the trees. The fair went from three days to four days to five days back to four days and we were there collecting entrance fees and parking fees and putting a friendly face on Rotary in our town.
The annual Rotary Christmas Concert brought together choirs from all the elementary schools and churches in Aylmer. It was a wonderful evening to bring in  the start of the Christmas season. Unfortunately, it fell victim to falling numbers in churches and falling budgets for music programs in the schools.
I first became president for the 1999-2000 year with our first female District Governor, a fact that was announced at every opportunity. We are seeing this phenomenon today with Jennifer Jones as RIPE. I always felt that women would really have made progress when a person’s gender no longer merited mention. 
That was the year, I’m sure Bill will remember, that we did the most amazing play for the millennium District Conference in Goderich in the middle of a hurricane-force storm and finished our performance after all the food had been devoured by those in the audience. But it was a great time.
During those years our family hosted several Youth Exchange students, most memorably Peter Petersen from Denmark with whom we are still in touch. Not so much with the kleptomaniac from Japan or Oh King from the Philippines who was under the impression that I was the house maid.
In 2001 I first took the position of District Group Study Exchange Chair, a position I held for 3 years, the most interesting being in 2003 in the midst of SARS. We had an exchange with the Philippines, a hot bed of SARS infections as was Toronto. It became apparent quite early on that this exchange was not going to happen but RI was insistent that there was no problem while I couldn’t get host families or even team members. Within a week of having contacted RI the exchange was postponed and eventually rescheduled for the following year.
2007 was a great year – I took a GSE team to Australia. The experience was unforgettable and life changing for the entire team. While perhaps the culture shock was not what would have been experienced had we gone to India or Brazil, it was like stepping back in time 20 years. Within the Rotary experience I found the most surprising thing was that many of the Australian clubs did not provide any financial support whatsoever to The Rotary Foundation. I was unable to discover the real reason but there was a total disconnect between the Foundation and many clubs. We can be incredibly proud of our annual contributions and the good works they facilitate.
As a club we undertook a number of large projects:  The Grind Skate Park in Aylmer and another in Vienna, the local splash pad in Balmoral Park, and the sugar shack in Springwater Conservation Area.  These were all accomplished with financial assistance of the Ontario Trillium Foundation.
For the next few years Bob and I tossed the Presidential orb back and forth until we fumbled and the Rotary Club of Aylmer relinquished its charter.  It was a sad day.
But I cannot not be a Rotarian.  So I was very happy to be welcomed as a member of this Rotary Club.  It is so important to me to be part of an organization composed of good people who live by a code of ethics that is second to none.  I am proud to be a Rotarian; Rotary gives me opportunities to share my good fortune with those who are less fortunate; and Rotary allows me to work with and play with great people who are an important part of my life.  So thank you to Rotary, the Rotary Club of St. Thomas, and to my fellow Rotarians.
Thank you Barbara for being an Inspiration!
The Aylmer club met regularly with the Rotary Club of St Thomas at Christmas and the Tillsonburg Club.
Nancy reminded Barbara about the Shelter Box program. Barbara said the one she has repacks into a much larger space than when shipped.
Gerry reported the first female District Governor was Judy Crawford of Goderich who went into action about the same time as Barbara.
From the District
Our May 19th noon Zoom will focus on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion as it relates to Honouring Indigenous Persons and Economic Development in our communities. We will also have a update on Hand Up, supporting countries in need (link to follow). Also, see the link to the Thornbury Rotary Club initiatives on inclusion
Happy Events:
President Gerry – 5May is the anniversary of the Liberation of Holland.
Barbara – Her father was part of the Canadian Forces in Holland at that time.
Ron – His mother was born on 4May and would have been 100 years old.
Nancy – There is a Dutch Rembrandt at the National Gallery, Ottawa; that is an honour for Canada.
She is waiting for the “all Clear” to go to the cottage.
Malcolm – First grandchild’s (of 9) birthday. We are fortunate to have Barbara as President Elect.
Stew – His transplants are in a holding pattern waiting for the garden to warm up. Stew and Trish are also waiting of the “all clear” to go glamping in their new trailer.
Barbara – Norfolk County has a COVID snitch telephone line.
Trish – It was a sad day when Aylmer club laid down their charter, but it has been our gain. Many thanks for all the work completed by Barbara and Mary as members of this club. 
Web site of the Rotary Club of St Thomas
Upcoming Events
District Zoom Meeting
May 19, 2021
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Change Over
Jun 23, 2021
5:00 PM – 8:00 PM
View entire list
Club Information
Visitors Welcome
Changes to regular meetings see "Upcoming Events"
We meet Wednesdays at 12:15 PM
Contact President to attend our virtual meeting
Virtual meeting
St Thomas, ON
DistrictSiteIcon District Site
VenueMap Venue Map
Executives & Directors
President Elect
Past President
Community Service
Club Service
International Service
International Service
Youth Service
Russell Hampton
ClubRunner Mobile