Arch C. Klumph is best known as the father of The Rotary Foundation.

November is Foundation Month.


Did you Know?

For a man best known as the father of The Rotary Foundation, Arch C. Klumph was modest about his role in its creation.

Klumph was born in the small town of Conneautville, Pennsylvania, USA, in 1869. When he was a child, his family moved to Cleveland, Ohio, where he would later become a member of the Rotary Club of Cleveland. In 1914, he was elected a director of the International Association of Rotary Clubs and served on the Constitution and By-Laws Committee and the Executive Committee. He was elected Rotary's sixth President in 1916, five years after he became a Rotarian.

Neasr the end of his terms as president ast the 1917 international convention in Atlanta, Georgie, Klumph reminded Rotarians that "Rotary is at the present time entering a new era, demanding improved methods in administrative machinery, with which to carry out the splendid principles which have been laid down heretofore." He defined six points of action, including an endowment, which would later become The Rotary Foundation.

"Carrying on, as we are, a miscellaneous community service, it seems eminently proper that we should accept endowments for the purpose of doing good in the world. In charitable, educational, or other avenues of community progress, or such funds could be well used for extension work."

Through Klumph's simple yet profound statement, the Rotary Endowment Fund was born. the first contribution was made by the Rotary Club of Kansas City in 1918. By 1928, when the RI By-Laws were amended to change the name to The Rotary Foundation, the endowment fund had grown to over $5,000.

In 1929, the Foundation made its first grant: $500 to the International Society for Crippled Children as requested by the donor, Rotary founder Paul P. Harris.

Read more at the History of the Rotary Foundation and History of Rotary International pages.