Canadians inducted into Arch C. Klumph Society
Arch C. Klumph Society inductees during the Canada Day ceremony 25 October in Evanston.
Five couples, and a Canadian who generously supported The Rotary Foundation’s work in basic education and literacy, were inducted into the Arch C. Klumph Society during a Canada Day ceremony 25 October. The society honors those who give at least US$250,000 to the Foundation.
Canada is home to more than 25,000 Rotarians. The Rotary Club of Winnipeg, Manitoba, chartered in 1910, was the first club outside of the United States. Five RI presidents have come from Canada, including Wilfrid J. Wilkinson, who is currently serving as Foundation trustee chair.
“This is a very proud day for Canadian Rotarians, and I am thrilled to be a part of it,” said Wilkinson. “It is our honor to recognize our inductees’ service and to gather as one, the family of Rotary, to applaud their efforts.”
General Secretary John Hewko added, “Rotary has had a strong presence in Canada since its earliest days, and I am so pleased that we have the chance to gather today to recognize some Canadians who have done remarkable work in the name of our Rotary Foundation.”
Bryn and Randy Styles
Wilkinson introduced the first couple, Bryn and Randy Styles, noting that Bryn’s many positions in the Foundation have given him a chance to share his enthusiasm for Rotary with other Rotarians.
“Bryn is very sincere about his commitment to Rotary and his affections for our Rotary Foundation, and he has worked diligently to support both,” Wilkinson said.
A pharmacist, Bryn joined the Rotary Club of Barrie-Huronia, Ontario, in 1986 and has served as club president (1994-95), governor of District 7010 (2004-05), and regional Rotary Foundation coordinator (2010-12). He is currently a Rotary International director. His wife, Randy, is a volunteer at Hospice Simcoe. The couple supports the Foundation through the Bryn and Randy Styles Rotary Peace Centers Endowed Fund.
Bryn said he became interested in conflict resolution years ago after listening to Wilkinson speak about creating an environment for peace. Bryn said he was skeptical at first but came to see this as having the potential to “close the deal” on Rotary’s efforts to change the world.
“By training individuals who will eventually be in positions of authority in the UN, NGOs, and governments with the tools of conflict resolution, we will provide a means for peace,” Bryn said. “Gradually, over generations, as we remove the reasons for war we will have people in place to negotiate peaceful solutions to conflict. Our peace program is the close to the circle of peace.”
Chris and Penny Offer
Chris Offer, a retired police commander, joined the Rotary Club of Vancouver South in 1988 and is a member of the Rotary Club of Ladner, British Columbia. He has served as club president (1991-92), governor of District 5040 (1999-2000), and regional Rotary Foundation coordinator (2008-11). His wife, Penny, joined the Rotary Club of Burnaby-Deer Lake and later the Ladner club. She has served as club president (2003-04) and district governor (2010-11).
Chris recalled how he first learned about Rotary as a young patrol sergeant and signed up for a Group Study Exchange. “What I did not do was read the small print on the application that said this was a lifetime commitment. Going on this GSE team to India was truly life-changing.”
He described the team’s visit to a Foundation-funded eye clinic that performed free cataract surgeries. The patients kept thanking the team because they represented Rotary, which had given them their sight.
Since then, Chris said, “I have had many opportunities to see how our Foundation changes lives . . . This is why The Rotary Foundation is our charity of choice.”
The Offers support the Foundation through the Penny and Chris Offer Fund for Peace and Conflict Resolution.
Sandy and Jane MacKay
Sandy MacKay, whose father was also a Rotarian, joined the Rotary Club of Medicine Hat, Alberta, in 1977 and has served as club president (1982-83) and governor of District 5360 (2002-03). He served as representative to the Council on Legislation in 2010. In 2001, he traveled to India to work on a Health, Hunger and Humanity grant project for integrated village development.
Foundation Trustee Ashok Mahajan of India noted that Sandy won many friends in the Rotary Club of Calcutta Metropolitan through his involvement in the project, chronicled in the video Make No Small Plan.
Mahajan said, “PDG Sandy and Jane, like me, have a very soft spot in their hearts for the beautiful country of India.”
Sandy said he and his wife have been grateful for the opportunity Rotary has given them to make a positive difference in the world.
“Where else could I have had the opportunity to help 53,000 destitute Indians get an education, develop a vocation, and get medical care for their children?” he asked. “How else could we have possibly helped to rid the world of polio?”
Jennifer Jones and Nicholas Krayacich
Jennifer Jones, president and CEO of a television production company, joined Rotary in 1996. She has served as president of the Rotary Club of Windsor-Roseland, Ontario, (2001-02), governor of District 6400 (2007-08), and district public relations chair (2009-11). She has been honored for her professional and charitable efforts with a host of awards, including Rotary International’s Service Above Self Award, the YMCA Peace Medallion, and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal.
Her husband, Nicholas Krayacich, who was unable to attend the ceremony, is a physician. He joined the Rotary Club of LaSalle-Centennial in 2010 and is serving as club president in 2012-13.
Jennifer’s mother, Joyce, president of the Rotary Club of Windsor, noted the couple’s many acts of service to the community and their enthusiasm for outdoor activities and travel. They have participated in missions to the Brazilian Amazon, Peru, Haiti, Venezuela, and Tanzania and summited Mount Kilimanjaro in 2009.
Jennifer credited her parents with letting her try things and make mistakes, which developed into a commitment to service. “I share this to illustrate a point -- service doesn’t happen by accident; it is learned, and it takes cultivation.”
Jennifer and Nicholas, both Foundation alumni, have established an annual peace symposium at Duke University to support Rotary Peace Fellows and publicize the program. They are also creating a pooled endowment that will generate revenue for their district to use for water projects.
“This is an area that we both believe is of critical importance to the future of our planet,” Jennifer said. “We believe this is vitally important because water is life.”
Wayne and Bernice Chesley
Wayne Chesley, who, like Sandy MacKay, is a member of the Rotary Club of Medicine Hat, has been a Rotarian since 1998. He served as club president in 2008-09 and is involved with the annual Medicine Hat Rotary Music Festival, which the club has sponsored for more than 50 years. He and his wife, Bernie, also traveled to India to take part in the dedication ceremony for the integrated village development grant project.
“A defining moment for me and my wife, Bernie, was when PDG Sandy MacKay invited us to . . . travel to Calcutta [for the dedication],” Wayne said. “This was our first experience with abject poverty, and it was overwhelming. The fact that the Foundation invested more than US$300,000 in this project convinced Bernie and me that the Foundation was the place that we should put our donations.”
Laverna, who passed away in 2011, admired the Foundation’s work in basic education and literacy and supported it through the Laverna Dollimore Fund.
Laverna spent most of her career as an executive assistant in Canada’s diplomatic corps, working in various embassies around the world. She served in the Women’s Royal Canadian Naval Service during World War II, returning to civilian secretarial work briefly after the war, then joining Canada’s Department of External Affairs in 1956. Her posts included Canadian embassies in Cairo, Warsaw, Poland, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Leopoldville, Belgian Congo (present-day Kinshasa, Congo), the Soviet Union (now Russia), Laos, and Cambodia. She was awarded the Canadian Peacekeeping Service Medal.
She was assigned to the Canadian Embassy in Tehran, Iran, in 1977 and played a role in supporting six Americans who had evaded the 1979 hostage-taking at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. While they were in hiding, she worked tirelessly to make them as comfortable as possible. She was awarded the Order of Canada for her role in their eventual rescue. Her last post was Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. She retired to Brighton, Ontario, in 1983.
Five couples from Taiwan were inducted into the society on 26 October. A story and photos about Taiwan Day will be posted to the website as soon as it becomes available.