Hello Rotarians, Thank you for the warm welcome to the role of South Launceston Rotary Club President for 2019-20.

My wish was to minimise the formalities at last Thursday’s Changeover Dinner – as the night should rightly be about fellowship and friendship among the fifty or so attending. My congratulations goes to past President Krista for her leadership over the past year and empathy in all situations.

Last year saw the unenvious task of introducing the new Rotary structure. We have been able to learn and hence reflected a slightly new board structure that is more appropriate to the club’s needs.

Please let me introduce the coming year’s board – many of whom are continuing in their roles held last year

President – Harry Galea.

Secretary – Andrea Bartholemew.

Treasurer (Accounting) – Stephen Gordan.

Treasurer (Banking) – Terry Crawford.

Club Services (new portfolio and Director) – Les Baxter.

Community Service Projects (Delivery) (new portfolio and Director) – Nic Butler.

Community Service Projects (Funding) (amended portfolio) – Graeme LeFevre.

Public Image (new Director) – Glenda Iles.

Rotary Foundation – Josh de Groot.

Vocational Projects – Wayne Higgs.

Youth Projects – Lance Pfeffer.

The board was off to a flying start with a planning workshop held on Saturday 22 June at the St Vincent de Paul offices – thankyou Lara for making the boardroom available. More will be presented to members in the coming weeks.

Our guiding charter is undertaking benevolent work – something that has not changed since the formation of Rotary. Some of South Launceston’s key initiatives for the coming year are: We are continuing to pursue a commercial size fresh vegetable facility for the use of the St Vincent de Paul ‘Soup Kitchen’ providing meals to the homeless. This would be in partnership with two schools, so that we can advance learning and future jobs in horticulture.

Our fund-raising activities will allow us to make large and small donations to many not-for-profit organisations including our commitments to ‘Care for Africa’ – a special mention to Rotarian Di Butler for her ever endless work.

A focus to work with organisations and our own members to identify those in our local community who are in need so that we can help them on a one-to-one basis

We want to plan a calendar to advance fellowship and friendship among members and their partners – networking among members and a well organised community service program will made for a stronger club and of -course our support for Rotary International and Rotary District for their respective major projects in eliminating world polio and improve the health of indigenous Australians.

Congratulations must go to Rotarian Martin Yates who was awarded a Paul Harris Fellowship by past President Krista and to Rotarian Merilyn Briggs, who was awarded a Sapphire Paul Harris Fellowship by the District for her work in the youth area and other services. This is a very high and quite rare honour, and our club should be proud its members are recognised so broadly.