R. I. President Message


RI President 2021-22 Shekhar Mehta- Aug 2021

Dear Fellow Rotarians, Rotaractors, and friends,

As we focus on membership in Rotary this month, I ask you to help make history this year. For more than 20 years, our membership has stood at 1.2 million. Rotary is a vibrant organization with a 116-year history, members in more than 220 countries and geographic areas, and a rich legacy of work in polio eradication and other humanitarian programs. Rotary has changed so much in our own lives and the lives of others. As we Serve to Change Lives, don’t you think Rotary could have an even greater impact on the world if more people were practicing Service Above Self?

My vision is to increase Rotary membership to 1.3 million by July 2022, and the call to action is simple: Each One, Bring One. This year, I want every Rotarian and Rotaractor to introduce a new person into their club.

We are a membership organization, and members are our greatest asset. You are the ones who contribute so generously to The Rotary Foundation. You are the ones who dream big to bring good into the world through meaningful projects. And of course, you are the ones who have put the world on the brink of eradicating polio.

As we make membership a priority this year, let us focus on diversity by reaching out to younger people and especially to women. Every club should celebrate its new members, and every Rotarian who sponsors a member will be personally recognized by me. And those who are successful in bringing in 25 or more members will be part of our new Membership Society.

Even as we share the gift of Rotary with others, let us be sure to engage these new members, because an engaged Rotarian is an asset forever. And remember that engaging our current members and keeping them in our clubs is just as important as bringing in newcomers. Let us also be ready to form new clubs, especially flexible ones. I am very bullish on clubs that hold virtual or hybrid meetings, and satellite clubs and cause-based clubs can also be very effective ways of growing Rotary.

As you grow more, you will be able to do more. Let us keep empowering girls through our work in each of the areas of focus. Scholarships for girls, toilets in schools, health and hygiene education — there is so much we can do. Projects focused on the environment are also attracting interest the world over. Do participate in these projects locally and internationally to make this world a better place for us and for all species.
Each of you is a Rotary brand ambassador, and all of the wonderful work done by Rotarians around the world needs to be shared outside the Rotary community. Use social media to tell your friends, colleagues, and relatives the stories of Service Above Self.

Finally, I’m challenging every club, during the coming year, to plan at least one Rotary Day of Service that will bring together volunteers from inside and outside Rotary and will celebrate and showcase the work of your club in your community. Visit rotary.org to find out more about all of these initiatives, along with other ways to Serve to Change Lives.

Shekhar Mehta
President 2021-22

Trustee Chair's Message - August 2021

John F. Germ
Trustee Chair 2021-22
Chattanooga, Tennessee

Trustee chair's message

In August, we focus on membership — exploring ways we can expand Rotary’s ranks and reach. As we form new clubs and answer RI President Shekhar Mehta’s call of Each One, Bring One, let’s consider how these efforts will have a positive impact at every level of our organization.

Rotary’s two greatest assets are its members and The Rotary Foundation, and they are linked. Our organization is made up of more than 48,000 Rotary and Rotaract clubs, and without our dedicated club members, we can’t perform service. Our members also carry out the Foundation’s mission of doing good in the world, by working on grassroots projects and making contributions that support countless Foundation programs and grants.

With more members in Rotary, the Foundation could do even more good in the world. We would have more hands to set up water, sanitation, and hygiene projects, so that more people could access clean water. We would have more minds to plan global grants projects that support prenatal services, so that more babies could live. We could fund more district grants that support literacy, so that more people could learn to read.

Today, roughly a third of our members actively support the Foundation through annual giving or other means. Imagine how we could extend Rotary’s reach if we were to increase that engagement, even by just a little. More Rotarian contributions would mean additional funding for the Rotary Peace Centers, as well as more matched contributions to help eradicate polio, thanks to our partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The Rotary Foundation is a powerful force that efficiently carries out impactful and sustainable projects around the world; Charity Navigator has recognized The Rotary Foundation with a four-star rating annually for 13 consecutive years. All Rotary members can be proud of this. And how great it would be if all Rotarians would support the Foundation in whatever way they could.

I have a simple request this month. Please take 10 minutes during your next club meeting to discuss ways to get more involved in the Foundation this year. It could be planning an online fundraiser to benefit the Foundation or partnering with other clubs for a global grant project.

Whatever you do, remember that our members — all of us — drive Rotary’s efforts and sustain our Foundation.


John F. Germ
Trustee Chair 2021-22

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