There are 20,417 Rotary Clubs throughout 167 countries. That makes for a lot of handshaking and rubber chicken lunches.
But while camaraderie is the most visible element at a Rotary Club meeting, voluntarism and service are prime motivators for Rotary International, the world's oldest service club.The Sugar House Rotary Club is no exception. Chartered in 1936, the club has a history of over 50 years of service to the community including:
-Primary Children's Medical Center - donated $5,000 a year for the past 30 years.
-Oruro, Bolivia - Sugar House Rotary Club has raised $2,000. The club and Bolivia Power and Partners of America have $12,500 in a trust account to qualify for a Rotary Foundation matching grant for a women's medical center in Bolivia. Rotarian Joe Brewerton has donated X-ray and medical equipment while Ken Millard donated a gas chain saw for the use of Bolivian homesteaders.
-Polio Plus, an international program to eradicate polio - Sugar House Rotarians are within $10,000 of their $40,000 contribution goal.
-Sugar House Boys and Girls Club - each year the Rotarians donate $1,000 for activities and day care for single parents.
-Sheriff's Luncheon - now in its fourth year, the Rotary awards noteworthy deputy sheriffs at a luncheon in May.
-Sub for Santa - a needy family receives dinner and $100-$150 in clothing from Dan's and J.C. Penney.
-Exchange student - Sugar House Rotarians sponsor an exchange student and support a student from Germany with $50 per month and free housing.
-Utah Boys Ranch - club helps fund the ranch out of contributions.
-Group Study Exchange - Sugar House Rotarians also participate in group study exchange with Rotary International.
-Sugar House Park - six years ago the Rotary Club donated playground equipment to the park.
One of the highlights of the Sugar House Rotary lunches, held each Thursday at the Sugar House Chuck-A-Rama, is the financial dictatorship practiced by Sergeant-at-Arms Dick Aposhian. While each Rotarian is assessed $10 per month to support Rotary causes, Aposhian harasses his friends at lunch by "fining" them for coming late or leaving early or even for telling bad jokes. Luckily, the Aposhian fine of $100 will still be just $10 when it comes time to pay. A bucket is passed for loose change, and last year the bucket donations paid for the posters for the Utah Lung Association.
President of the Sugar House Rotary Club is Ken Millard, president of Millard Consultants, Architects and Urban Planning. Vice president and president-elect is David G. Free, terminal manager for Utah-Wyoming Freight Lines. Second vice president is Kent Cardwell, vice president and regional supervisor for West One Bank. Joseph Mills, Leonard E. Driggs Insurance, is secretary. Directors on the Rotary board are Rickter Holbrook, president of Holbrook Funeral Chapel; and William E. Zwick Jr., owner of Zwick Construction Co.
The 102 members of the Sugar House Rotary Club meet each Thursday. Dana Tumpowsky of Westminster College is the groundbreaking woman Rotarian.