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A New Year Begins!

July 1st, new officers and directors assumed leadership at the Peninsula Rotary Club during a soirée at The Artîsan in Ilwaco, with catering by Vinessa Mulinex, along with a “getting to know you” silent auction.

The auction, in its third year, raises funds for polio eradication while letting club members learn more about one another.  Each Rotarian brings an item to auction which tells something about themselves, their interests and hobbies.  Members and guests bid on the items, with the proceeds going to Polio Plus, Rotary’s signature program to eradicate polio in the final four countries in which it remains.

“Rotary is largely responsible for polio no longer existing in this and other countries throughout the world,” noted outgoing President Carol Lynn Ockfen.  “We are gratified to be working with the United Nations and the Gates Foundation to take eradication the final inch to completion.”

Ockfen references “The Final Inch”, an award-winning short film detailing the history of Polio and Rotary’s involvement in ridding the planet of this suffering disease.  The video can be seen on HBO and is fed to the club’s website at

The new club officers and directors are: President Dick Fisher, President Elect Lynn Raymer, Secretary/Club Administration Peggy Miles, Treasurer Bob Hamilton, Sergeant-at-Arms Stan Sonntag, Past President Carol Lynn Ockfen, Service Projects Director Lynn Raymer, World Community Service Projects Director Shirley Pryor-Pyne, and Rotary Foundation Director Nancey Olsen.

Special honoree of the evening was Lucille Pierce, who was presented with the prestigious Paul Harris award in honor of the more than decade of service given by she and recently departed husband Sam, a charter member of the club.
Members were recognized for service in many arenas with a very surprised Peggy Miles being announced as the club’s Rotarian of the Year.  “I just did my job!” Miles blushed, exemplifying the quiet and steady service Rotarians are known for throughout the world.

Fisher, incoming president, said “The theme for the 2009-10 Rotary year is ‘The Future of Rotary Is in Your Hands’, emphasizing the individual clubs that make up the heart and soul of the organization. In my year as president our Rotary club will share its talents, time, expertise, enthusiasm and commitment with our community and with the world. We will make a difference in the future of our world.” Fisher added, “The service projects we labor on and the money we contribute have an extraordinary effect on the world we live in. It is a great honor to preside over my Club in the coming Rotary year.”

Founded in 1905, Rotary International is is the world’s first service club organization, with more than 1.2 million members in 33,000 clubs worldwide. Rotary club members are volunteers who work locally, regionally, and internationally to combat hunger, improve health and sanitation, provide education and job training, promote peace, and eradicate polio under the motto Service Above Self.

The Rotary Club of Southwest Pacific County Peninsula was founded in 1995 to promote high ethical standards in business and “Service Above Self.” Over the years the club has been involved in countless service projects that benefit the local community, the nation and the world.  The Peninsula club meets weekly for breakfast, fellowship and a half-hour presentation by a guest speaker.  Club members welcome guests interested in learning more about Rotary, or who would simply like to enjoy the week’s program.  Breakfast is $10.  Commitment is zero.

The club welcomes visitors for breakfast and to enjoy upcoming programs, such as this week (July 7th) when Columbia River Bar Pilot Captain Robert Johnson will be speaking on his interesting work.  Captain Johnson has over 20 years experience guiding a wide variety of vessels safely through the Columbia River and over the Bar. One of 15 pilots who board ships and assume the navigational conduct of their vessel, these men and woman have all been at sea at least 10-15 years and have the highest licensing standard for entry into pilotage in the U.S.

On average, forty million tons of incoming cargo worth $18B crosses the Columbia Bar each year, and the group is dedicated to providing uninterrupted service to keep the flow of commerce open. Come and meet Captain Johnson and hear a little about his experiences on one of the most treacherous harbor entrances in the world.

SW Pacific County Peninsula Rotary meets Tuesday mornings, 7:30 am, at the 42nd Street Cafe in Seaview.  Contact Dick Fisher for more information: 360.642.3045 or

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