Dear Fellowship Members:
June marks the first anniversary of my role of Rotary Heritage and History International Fellowship President. After the International Convention meeting in New Orleans, my dear friends and Rotarians Bill and Louise Mixon and dear husband Jerry Young accepted leadership roles. It has been an inspiring event as I follow my father Norman F. Kloker, founder of the fellowship's passion for Rotary history.
We have welcomed new members to the fellowship and enjoyed presenting our story and Hall of Fame plaques to others. It was a joy to share the 50 years of Rotary membership to two Rotarians in the Rotary Club of Kingston Tennessee. After telling my father's role in the fellowship formation and my pride in his service, both gentlemen shared that they were son's of Rotarians.
It was humbling to accept into fellowship membership Oak Ridge Rotary Club member Bill Wilcox as he is known as a famous historian of Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Sometimes I hear folks say, "Its just history" but for me it means so much to be a member of a service organization that believes its history is important and treasures its founders and their vision. I was especially fortunate to be the child of Norman and experience Chicago Rotary meetings as a guest and have fellowship with his friends. I am often asked if growing up West of Chicago was overwhelming. I respond with stories of significant people I know through Chicago Rotary events and the weekly speakers. Often I believe they were life changing in my education and my life.
Hearing Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt speak and get her autograph instilled in me a passion for advocacy that has guided my life. Riding Mr. Chuck Wallgreen's yacht on the boating fellowship's day on Lake Michigan and dining in my dad's Rotarian friend's restaurant in China Town are memories of the real meaning of fellowship to only mention a few. I was sincerely humbled when giving the five minute family speech about our father before his installation as President of Rotary One. To calm my nerves the speaker, Chicago's Cardinal Bernadine sitting next to me said, "You can do it" I think of this every time I present.