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Rotary Club of Los Altos

The Rotary Club of Los Altos was chartered in 1949 and has over 170 active members, men and women ranging from age 25 to 90+.
The Rotary Club of Los Altos is a nonpolitical, non-sectarian fellowship of inspired business, professional and community leaders, guided by high ethical standards. As Rotarians, we work in proactive ways to change lives in our community and around the world. Our skills and contributions are leveraged through Rotary International, to accomplish high-impact projects.

Rotary Overview

Rotary is a worldwide organization of business and professional leaders that provides humanitarian service, encourages high ethical standards in all vocations, and helps build goodwill and peace in the world. There are over 1.2 million Rotarians, in over 34,000 clubs around the world, in more than 200 countries and geographical areas. 

Rotary International

Rotary was founded by Paul Harris, in Chicago, Illinois, on February 23, 1905. Today, although its headquarters are in the Chicago area, Rotary is truly international – fewer than half of the members are in the United States. Rotary International (RI) is headed by a President and Board of Directors. The President of RI, like District Governors and Presidents of Clubs, serves for only one year and is elected from among the ranks of Rotarians who have served Rotary over the years in many positions.

The mission of Rotary International is to support its member clubs in fulfilling the Object of Rotary (printed on the inside front cover) by:

  • Fostering unity among member clubs;

  • Strengthening and expanding Rotary around the world;

  • Communicating worldwide the work of Rotary; and

  • Providing a system of international administration. 

Rotary Districts

Rotary is organized into Zones and Districts worldwide. LARC is in District number 5170. District 5170 is divided into 9 Areas, which overall contain 53 Clubs in the San Francisco Bay area, including: Alameda, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz and San Benito Counties, from Oakland to Hollister and from Watsonville to Livermore.

Each District is led by a District Governor, who serves for one year. The DG is selected by a committee of our five most recent District Governors from among Rotarians who have served the District in many roles. For 2014-15, our District Governor is Judge Ed Jellen of the Rotary Club of Oakland #3

To help the Governor lead the 4,000 Rotarians in our District, the District is further divided into nine Areas, each headed by an Assistant District Governor. The Los Altos Rotary Club is in Area #9, which also includes: East Palo Alto, Los Altos Sunset, Mountain View, Palo Alto, and Palo Alto University. Shawn Curby of the Los Altos Sunset Club is the current Area 9 Assistant District Governor.

Rotary Clubs

The strength of Rotary is in the Clubs. They are essentially autonomous and set their own programs, their own goals and their own pace. What keeps them functioning as Rotary Clubs is the fact that they all share a common Club constitution setting forth the basic rules of operating. RI, which charters the Clubs, insists on the adoption of the standard Club constitution, although Clubs are allowed to write their own bylaws. A further unifying factor is that the Districts are active in training the new leaders who take over each year, at weekend-long sessions called President-Elects Training Sessions or PETS.