I joined Rotary for 2 reasons. First; Janet and I grew up in a small village north of New York City. We came to Ohio for college. Once we found Chagrin Falls/South Russell, we knew it was where we wanted to make our home and raise our family.
I joined Chagrin Valley Rotary in 1996 because Rotary embodies the community. Its membership includes the schools, safety forces, village, and business leadership focused on supporting the community, students and parents through service. What better way to connect with Chagrin/South Russell to make this our home.
Second; Rotary is international. Early in my career I was awarded a Rotary Group Study Exchange scholarship that connected me to a rural health care project while travelling in the Philippines. That cross cultural experience in the developing world helped me to appreciate our lives as children of privilege in the United States. We have problems here, but we are not struggling daily in the search of food, water and shelter as much of the world must.
This led to my commitment to Rotary’s motto of “Service Above Self’ through the channel of international service. I have chaired the Rotary Group Study Exchange in the past and am now the Chair of Gift of Life North East Ohio. One in every hundred children born in the world is born with a congenital heart defect. In our country we just fix them. In the developing world it is often not recognized and they die.
This program supports inbound surgical teams to help teach, train and equip local health care providers to correct these little hearts in their own hospitals. Our Gift of Life Northeast Ohio has saved the lives of more than 4,000 children throughout the developing world and helped create Gift of Life International saving over 40,000 children through 84 GoL chapters in 80 countries. Please visit our web site to learn more about what we do and how you can contribute by clicking here.