Officers, Directors & Program Chairs
President Elect
Past President
Community Service Awards
Service Projects Chair
Rotary Foundation
Membership Chair
Fundraising Chair
Program Chair
Speech Contest Chair
Public Relations Chair

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Club Information

Welcome to our Club!

St. Johnsbury

Rotary Serving Humanity

We meet In Person & Online
Mondays at 12:15 PM
Salt Bistro
Eastern Avenue
St. Johnsbury, VT 05819
United States of America
In-person meetings are currently suspended, join us for our Zoom meeting, Monday's at 12:15 pm. Email for the link.
St. Johnsbury Rotary Latest News
Heather Winkler joined us at our Monday, October 19th meeting and shared her moving and inspiring story of her family's personal experience with polio. She specifically shared stories about her mother's experience with having polio and becoming a disability rights advocate. Her mother, Sue Williams, went on to help form the Vermont Center for Independent Living, which is still active today. There is a fund at VCIL named after Heather's mom, the Sue Williams Freedom Fund, that provides funding for services and equipment to help people with disabilities achieve or maintain independence in their own homes. Heather's words tell the story best so we encourage you to watch the video (above) of her presentation to our club. 

Rotary District 7850 is pleased to announce that Keynote Speaker and Author Joey Coleman will be presenting on how to “Never Lose a Customer Again” by Zoom on Saturday, October 17th at 5 pm.  Joey will share his insights with Rotarians from Rotary District 7850 (an international Rotary District that is comprised of areas of Vermont, New Hampshire, and Quebec) as well as members of the public who will enjoy learning the recipe for retaining customers in this competitive business environment.

St. Johnsbury Rotary took part in the recent Relay for Life - a drive through Relay event at the Caledonia County Fairgrounds held on September 19th. Thank you to all who attend the event and/or sent in donations for our team in support of this important cause. Rotarian Melynda Miller did an amazing job sharing her survivor story at the event. You can view her portion of the event on our Club YouTube Channel here
Jay Miller presenting masks to Waterford School Principal Chris Miller. 
Thanks to a grant received by Rotary District 7850 from the Rotary Foundation, reusable and washable masks were distributed to two local schools - Danville and Waterford. 
Rotary District 7850 received a $25,000 Disaster Relief Grant specifically related to COVID-19 response from the Rotary Foundation. The District purchased $12,000 worth of masks and used remaining funds to support the Vermont Foodbank, New Hampshire Foodbank and a Foodbank in Quebec. 
This month four St. Johnsbury Rotarians volunteered at Veggie Van Go and assisted the program to serve a record number of families - 500 families in total!
Frank Empsall, Joe Fox, Jay Miller, and Melynda Miller helped to distribute food and provide traffic control. They were joined by volunteers from NVRH, Vermont Foodbank, and the St. Johnsbury office of the Vermont Department of Health. 
Veggie Van Go is offered monthly at NVRH, in partnership with the Vermont Foodbank, to provide fresh seasonal produce to members of our community. 
Thank you for all the support with the TeleHealth for Seniors service project!  Last Monday, August 31st,  we collected 18 devices and $320 to help Lia Rubel and the team of students from TeleHealth Access for Seniors; who are dedicated to helping Seniors access healthcare from the safety of their homes.  An extra big thank you to St. Johnsbury Academy for their large donation of iPads and to Brynn Evans for helping arrange the donation!  It was so much fun to see so many Rotarians in-person after such a long time of meeting on Zoom.  A good time was had by all! 
-President Katheryn
Katheryn was interviewed by Alexandra Huff of News7/NEWSLINC from Northern Vermont University. This can be viewed here and the story starts around 7 minutes into the video.  

Jamie Milne, a resident of Joe’s Pond in West Danville, and a long-time member of the St. Johnsbury Rotary Club, became Rotary District 7850’s Governor for the 2020-2021 Rotary year on July 1, 2020. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the District was unable to hold a formal ceremony with an in-person gathering, however Jamie was presented with the District’s Rotary Bell (with Jamie’s name engraved on it) by Ron and Marilyn Bedell, members of the Rotary Club of Lebanon in New Hampshire, who have both served as District governors in the past and continue to hold offices and chair committees in the District.

Our club welcomed Roderick Owens as our speaker on August 17, 2020. He provided us with a brief introduction on the topic of equality vs. equity. Roderick has recently founded the Orleans County Coalition for Cultivating Equity and is currently organizing, facilitating, or presenting on topics such as: Celebrating Diversity, Promoting Racial Equity, Developing Cultural Humility, and on Alexander Twilight and other notable Vermont African Americans. 
Jennifer Grant joined us as our speaker at our August 10, 2020 meeting. She is a Community Resource Coordinator with Northern Counties Health Care, Inc. and she is involved with the Physically Health Community Action Network through NEK Prosper. She spoke to us about an exciting community wide wellness campaign called Energize Expedition. The recording of our meeting can be viewed here
Thank you to our Rotarian volunteers for assisting with an additional community food drop. This took place at Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital on July 31st. The event provided food to 205 families. 
We were pleased to welcome the new St. Johnsbury Academy Headmaster Dr. Sharon Howell to our club and community on July 27, 2020. Dr. Howell officially started at SJA on July 1st and is the first woman headmaster to serve in this role.
The meeting and presentation were recorded and can be viewed here
Thank you to Laura Valcour of the NEK Council on Aging for joining us as our speaker on July 20, 2020. Laura is the Director of Nutrition and Wellness working with 17 Meals on Wheels programs in the NEK. She expressed her appreciation for our Rotary Club, as they received some of the mac and cheese meals that we helped bring to the community. There has been an increase in the number or meals being served throughout the pandemic. The meal programs have risen to the challenge thanks to additional funding through the COVID CARES Act and support from the local community. Laura has helped to provide training resources to programs on safety precautions to ensure the continuation of meal services. Mask wearing and sanitizing are important aspects of these precautions. Most meals are delivered by volunteers. They provide meals and an important safety check to recipients. This is an important program for a vulnerable population in our community - helping to keep them well-nourished and safe during the pandemic. 
Thank you to our Rotarian Volunteers for assisting at the July Veggie Van Go food distribution event held at NVRH. 
You helped to provide food to 311 families! 
Sign ups are active in the calendar for additional dates in July and August, as well as the regularly scheduled August date. 
Feel free to email Brynn at for more info. or to sign up. 
Abigail Joyal, President of the GenRotary Club in Central Vermont, joined us as our speaker at our July 13, 2020 meeting. 

Abigail was previously a Rotarct member and through that experience learned that Rotary can open many doors. Her favorite thing about Rotary is the people - meeting and collaborating with people across generations. 
Emma Kinerson, a 2020 graduate of St. Johnsbury Academy, was recently presented with a St. Johnsbury Rotary Club Community Service Award for $1,500. Every year, following an application process, the Club presents this award to high school seniors in the Club’s service area, who demonstrate Rotary’s motto of “Service Above Self.” Emma plans to attend Coastal Carolina University in South Carolina this fall, majoring in Integrative Biology with a double minor in Psychology and Spanish. She is the daughter of Kevin and Rebecca Kinerson of Corinth, Vt.
Normandie Lee and Frank Empsall spent last Thursday morning helping to distribute food to our neighbors at NVRH's  Veggie-Van-Go site. This happens the third Thursday of each month. Brynn Evans coordinates Rotary volunteers to help out. If you are interested let her know. Look how well Normandie and Frank practice self protection and social distancing!
Melynda Miller became the newest member of the St. Johnsbury Rotary Club on April 13, becoming the first member ever to be inducted during a Zoom meeting and not in person. Because of the Coronavirus pandemic and Stay Home, Stay Safe restrictions for the State of Vermont, the Club is now holding virtual weekly meetings. Melynda is a Residential Loan Officer at Union Bank in St. Johnsbury.
Dear Fellow Rotarians,
With trying and uncertain times upon us due to the COVID19 outbreak we are canceling meetings for the next two weeks. This is subject to change. I believe it's important to listen to our health officials so we can all get through this healthy.  We will hopefully reconvene April 6, 2020.
I hope you all stay healthy through this.  We will get through this. I wish all of you well.
My Very Best,
Frank Empsall
St. Johnsbury Rotary Club 

Each year, Rotary District 7850 (which is made up of 43 Rotary clubs in northern Vermont, New Hampshire and Canada) holds a district-wide Speech Contest for high school students. The contest starts at the club level and encourages local students to prepare and present a five-minute speech on a Rotary topic selected each year. This year’s topic, “How Does Rotary Connect To My World” focuses on teamwork and everyday relationships. Progressive competitions are held in the clubs’ assistant governor’s area ($150 prize); then at the District 7850 Conference, which this year is being held May 2 at Jay Peak Resort in Jay, Vermont ($250 prize – competition taking place before lunch); and the final round, also taking place at District 7850 Conference at Jay Peak on May 2, to be held before the evening dinner, where the ultimate winner will be named. The winner’s earnings will total $1000. Competing on March 9 at St. Johnsbury Rotary Club’s weekly meeting were three seniors from St. Johnsbury Academy. Winning the contest (and $100) and advancing to the assistant district governor’s level, is Michael Zixian Chen. Shown above, with the competitors, who were accompanied to the meeting by their teacher, Janet Warner-Ashley, are from left, Club President Frank Empsall, Mate Koszo, MacKay Breton, Michael Zixian Chen and Warner-Ashley.
Joy Ely became the newest member of the St. Johnsbury Rotary Club during its weekly meeting March 9. Joy works at Northeast Kingdom Community Action (NEKCA), an anti-poverty agency located in the St. Johnsbury and Newport areas. She and her family are residents of St. Johnsbury. She is shown with, at left, Rotarian Brynn Evans, and her Rotary sponsor, Anne McClaughry, at right.

Evan Carlson, representing Do North Coworking in Lyndonville, was guest speaker during St. Johnsbury Rotary Club’s weekly meeting February 24. Do North, a non-profit under the umbrella of Northern Vermont University, was launched on Nov. 15, 2018. Do North offers “community-driven programming to engage and inspire the next wave of entrepreneurs in our community. The abundance of human capital flowing from Northern Vermont University provides us with an opportunity to shape our workforce. With Do North we have a platform to leverage it.” Evan explained the benefits entrepreneurs experience through the different levels of membership with Do North, including high-speed internet, coffee and tea, access to printer, copier, scanner and shredding devices, secure space, conference room bookings, event space, private phone booths, and more. For more information, go to


St. Johnsbury Rotary Club Visioning: Strategic Planning for the Future

Our Club recently conducted a visioning session.  Information related to the session and the results are outlined in a paper contained in the Download area.
Upcoming Events
World Polio Day Celebration
Oct 26, 2020
Wear purple in celebration of World Polio Day
PDG Louisa Tripp
Nov 02, 2020
The Rotary Foundation
Darcie Mccann
Nov 16, 2020
Update from the NEK Chamber
Scudder Parker
Nov 23, 2020
Sharing poetry
Major achievement focus of Rotary's World Polio Day event

Rotary’s World Polio Day Online Global Update on 24 October hails this year’s historic achievement in polio eradication.

History: Rotary becomes intercontinental

Rotary HistoryRotary becomes intercontinentalOn 1 August 1912, the Rotary Club of London, Greater London, England, became the first Rotary club in Europe. Although

How Rotary is alleviating the effects of isolation during COVID-19

Throughout the pandemic, members are discovering ways to connect, cope, and care for each other and people in the communities they serve.

For true economic development, women are essential

Here’s why these organizations and their Rotary club partners are supporting local women’s entrepreneurship with financial literacy, small business loans, and one-on-one advisors.

A hurricane force in every phase of Rotary life

This Bahamian Rotarian has been a whirlwind of energy since he began volunteering in high school.