Speaker Meeting, 6.15 for 6.30pm

Mon 2nd December 2019 at 6.30 pm - 8.00 pm

Speaker: Rotary District 1100 Governor, Judy Powell

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Judy Powell said she is the third female District Governor in our District and our Club is the thirtieth she has visited during her year of office, although it has the distinction of being the first one where she had forgotten to bring her District Governor chain!!!. 

She brought greetings from the President of Rotary International, Mark Maloney, and reminded us that the motto for his year is “Rotary Connects the World”. His focus is supporting and strengthening Rotary. 

Judy is a member of the Fishponds and Downend Club (since 2001) where she has been President twice and Secretary for several years. Her husband Dave is also a member. They have taken part in Friendship Exchanges and are hoping to bring this back this year so other Rotarians can enjoy this experience. Her background is in administration (Civil Service, DHSS). She also helped run her husband’s Financial Advice business until it was sold. They are both now retired. Judy’s daughter helps with fundraising events, but she cannot persuade her to become a member!!! Her grandson also loves to help – recently with a “Mile of Pennies” in Bristol. 

Judy talked about membership and told us that retention of members is as important as recruiting new ones. Statistically most people leaving Rotary do so within the first two years of membership. It is very important to make sure all new members are involved with club activities – fund raising, social and the running of the club. Also, they should be mentored. Recently a “get together” was held for members who had been in Rotary for less than three years. This was very productive and some of the ideas from that meeting will be put into place. On a positive note membership is starting to “level out” 

The format of meetings, meeting times, dress code etc are becoming more flexible. There are now different types of membership – associate, corporate and of course Satellite Groups (which are especially good for Rotary) 

Clubs should try to work with other Rotary Clubs and with other organisations – Lions etc. We belong to a worldwide club and should try to promote Rotary as a whole. She referred to the Brighter Futures campaign as an example of what can be done when Clubs work together. She is passionate about the Life Education Centres sponsored by Rotary. This is a good project for Clubs to work together on as the cost of each centre is £42,000. 

What does Judy bring to the role of District Governor?  In her words: "getting people to do things."

Judy wished North Swindon Rotary well and thanked us for what we do each year. She volunteered to help at the 2020 Swimathon - the offer was quickly accepted by President Robin.

Editor's note - We'll certainly get her to "do things" at the Swimathon. Entering herself as captain of a team would be good!