All of us in Rotary are looking to change the world, for why else would we be Rotarians. We believe that our world can be happier, healthier, and more peaceful. We believe that the future can and will be better than the past. We are idealists, and we bring our ideals to life through our Rotary service. - Sheila Bristo.

 

 

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"I would like to take a moment before I begin to recognize Christopher, his family, Dan, Cathy and their family. Our thoughts and prayers are with them as they go through this extremely difficult time.

  

All of us in Rotary are looking to change the world, for why else would we be Rotarians. We believe that our world can be happier, healthier, and more peaceful. We believe that the future can and will be better than the past. We are idealists, and we bring our ideals to life through our Rotary service.

 

This quote from Kal-yan Bangeree, our 2011/12 Rotary International President was shared as he outlined RI's theme for this year….”Reach Within to Embrace Humanity.” Kalyan described our emphasis in our Rotary service over the coming year: To strengthen our family, to continue what we do best and to change whatever needs to be changed.

 

As Kalyan described our emphasis on continuity focuses on finding the things we do well---and our club has so many, and taking them to the next level.

 

We must continue our work for cleaner and safer water, mitigating diseases and illness, spreading literacy and working with and for the new generations and striving for peace. 

 

Under the leadership of our new Board, I am asking that our Local Donations/Service Project Committee, World Community Service Projects Committee and Vocational Services Committee consider ways we can continue our local and international efforts and our work in New Generations and Vocational services, that will deepen the effect of our club and focus our donations and hands on service to gain the greatest impact.

 

The emphasis on the family will provide thoughtful guidance for the work of these committees.

 

When I look at our club I see a very proud past and an optimistic future. We in St. Catharines are fortunate because we have four clubs to choose from…..yet each of us chose to be members of the St. Catharines South Club. The strength of our club is our membership and our fellowship and our personal engagement with each other to do good in our community and the world.

 

RI's third emphasis  of “change” is not change for change sake but change because we believe our world and our community can be happier, healthier and more peaceful.

 

Our club will be very ably lead by a Board of Directors with a mix of new and returning members --- who will build upon the excellent work of the 2010/11 Board.

 

I would especially like to than Paul Monaghan, John D’Ambrosio, Laetitia deWitt and Jason Pollock for their years of work and dedication to the Board and our club. While they are not returning to serve as Board members this year, they have left a solid foundation for those Director’s who will be leading the committees over the coming year.

  

I have been well mentored by the Presidents that have gone before me but none more so than John Teibert. John is a very committed, caring humble president to follow. And a large part of why I agreed to be president is that I would walk in John’s footsteps and continue to learn through his guidance (although I will admit his footsteps were hard to follow at times on Bourbon Street in New Orleans)

 

We have exciting work in our coming year starting with the Tour du lac in a couple of weeks, Rib Fest, Year 4 of the Take it to Heart Gala, Paul Harris recognition, the car rally, bingo, Firesides, membership development, GSE, slapshot, Ryla to name a few, All of which strengthen our fellowship and our ability to serve.

 

And let us not forget our international commitment to eradicate polio—we are this close.

 

Our work on our Strategic Plan is at an important stage as we look to the future and consider our club’s  next project or fundraising effort that will help brand our club—similar to our past and present commitment to Hospice Niagara and the Cardiac cath lab.

 

I am looking forward to serving as your President and I hope to serve you well with the support of each of you and especially my husband Bob and our sons Graham and Matthew.

 

It was Keith who brought me to St. Catharines South and I don’t remember if I ever thanked Keith for bringing this club and these amazing people into my life. Thank you Keith. We all need to share this amazing experience with others.

 

Finally thank you to Ed for being the master of ceremonies today and leading the induction of our new Board of Directors .

 

And---let us all reach within to embrace humanity as we go forward as Rotarians.

 

Thank you."

 

Sheila Bristo,