The Rotary Club of Pinjarra welcomed Rotary District 9465 Governor Pat Schraven to their meeting of Thursday 22nd of July.
Club President Mervyn Williams welcomed Rotarians and partners to the evening, which following the tradition of this Club, began with a song; everyone joined in singing the Rotary Standard "Vive le Rotary", and then recited the "Rotary Grace" prior to the evening meal.
Following the meal, President Mervyn called on Past President Geoff Booth to the microphone. Geoff had great pleasure to announce that Rotarian Barry Sanders is the recipient of a Paul Harris Society Sapphire Award.
Barry Sanders is the second longest serving member of this Club, having joined in May 1972. Barry has been a consistent contributor to the work of the Club. He was part of the early teams which ran the Pinjarra Fair when it was based at the Pinjarra Trotting Club. His work to design and add a viable lighting system to the Club’s Art Boards, and more recently, to upgrade the system with new a LED system, has made the Art Boards something that customers who hire the Boards value very highly. Barry's wife Maria has supported Barry's journey in Rotary, and the Club acknowledges that no Rotarian can be totally committed to the cause without the support and encouragement given by partners.
We congratulate Barry as he becomes a Sapphire Paul Harris Fellow. The Rotary ideal is of a world of peace and goodwill. Working with such individuals of good will, we believe the ideal will become a reality.
District Governor Pat came forward to present Barry with his pin and certificate.
Barry Sanders (Left), is presented with his Sapphire PHS Award by District Governor Pat Schraven assisted by Past President Geoff Booth
President Mervyn then surprised Immediate Past President Vince Costantino by announcing that Vince too is the recipient of a Paul Harris Society Sapphire Award.
Vince has been a member of the Rotary Club of Pinjarra since 2007, having served as a Committee Chair, Treasurer, Secretary and President during his time with the Club. Vince was previously a member of the Rotary Club of Midland, where he served a term as Secretary before relocating to the Shire of Murray. More recently, Vince has the unique position as being to only person to have been President of the Rotary Club of Pinjarra for two consecutive terms.
President Mervyn acknowledged that Vince's leadership during the disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic to have been significant to "keeping the Club together" during this time.
Vince thanked the Club, Board, and Members for having acknowledged his work, but said he had been honoured by the faith the Club has shown in his ability to have performed the task. "I feel this honour is one that the entire Club should share", he said. "I also acknowledge the love, support, and encouragement that my wife Nancy has given to me over this journey. I could not have done the job without that support."
District Governor Pat came forward to present Vince with his pin and certificate.
Vince Costantino (Left), is presented with his Sapphire PHS Award by District Governor Pat Schraven assisted by President Mervyn Williams.
After the frivolity of a raffle and "Sergeant's Fine Session" (to which many contributed their 50 cent penalty for a myriad of misdemeanours- real or imagined), President Mervyn invoted District Governor Pat to address the meeting.
District Governor Pat began by saying that the new Rotary year for our District started not too dissimilar a way to last year, in that events were cancelled as we went into another lockdown. The District Changeover Dinner was postponed to the 31 July 2021. "I would have settled for a virtual event", she said, "however, the Changeover Dinner is a time to reflect on the year we have had, the good work that has been done across our District and there are members to be recognised for their outstanding achievements and contribution and they deserve a celebration."
District Governor Pat Schraven

Rotary International‘s theme for 2021-2022 is Serve to Change Lives encourages us to continue to commit to the heart of what we as Rotarians do, to improve the lives of others through our service.
International President Shekhar Mehta is asking all Rotarians to increase Rotary’s impact through service by undertaking more community service projects. These projects will not only change the lives of those we assist but also change our lives for the better as to serve others and change their lives is the best way to live our own lives.
Rotary International 2021-22 Theme
Shekhar’s mantra is to “do more and grow more”. “Do more” as in larger and more impactful service projects and “grow more” as in increasing our membership and expanding its participation in service. We all have a part to play in increasing membership, inspire and include the community around with the good work you all do and take the opportunity to invite others to come and join us so we can do even more good work. (Here is a link to International President Shekhar's theme speech address to all Rotarians : )

Rotary’s opportunities are there for all of us, from retirees to teens we have an array of opportunities to serve communities, gain experience in broader and wider reaching projects and develop as leaders.

Unlike many other Rotary Districts, our restrictions with COVID to date have been minimal. We were able to run our training programs face to face, including: President Elect Training Seminar, four District Assemblies, a College of Governors event and the first of our training sessions for Assistant Governors. In addition to these events, many of incoming Club Presidents, Assistant Governors and other District and Club Officers have undertaken relevant courses in Rotary International’s Learning Centre. Our records show a substantial increase in our course completion rates for our District and I thank all of those that have completed the courses and appreciate those that are progressing through the courses and encourage them to keep at. Understanding your role’s responsibilities and how to access the policies, procedures and processes to guide you is a fundamental step in good governance.

Many other Districts have resorted to virtual events resulting in lower costs to each member and at a time convenient to each member. It is an area we need to explore more to enable us to expand our reach and reduce expenses. I want to give recognition to the Four Way Test Speech Contest committee with their initiative on working on rules and guidelines for a virtual contest, which would provide a platform for great participation, especially for our remote locations, in this excellent program.

Finally, to finish on the subject of leadership, we all need to remember that we are all leaders in our communities. We need to set the example, to be the standard we want our Clubs, our District and our communities to be. It is vital that we stand up for what we believe and call out any unacceptable behaviour. A wise Past District Governor once shared that what we do should be for the good of Rotary – put egos aside and Rotary first.
So with egos aside we are now about to embark on the forming of new District that will incorporate D9455 and D9465. DG Dee Buckland and I, along with District Governors-Elect and the support of our respective Board, have commenced discussions on the pathway forward. As leaders, our priority is to keep our members informed and updated as we progress.

Thank you to The Rotary Club of Pinjarra; your Club is always a delight for me to visit, and this occasion has been likewise.
Rotarian Julie Gray thanked District Governor Pat on behalf of the Club, and presented a small memento to her.
The meeting was closed with the singing of the National Anthem.