Highlights from the 2003-04 Board of Directors meetings
June 2004 Board meeting
The fourth and final meeting of the 2003-04 RI Board of Directors was held on 20 May 2004 in Osaka, Japan, and 5-9 June 2004 in Evanston, Illinois, USA.
As part of its strategic planning initiative, the Board adopted the following vision statement for RI:
Rotary International Vision for 2010
Rotary will be recognized for its leadership and success in the eradication of polio.
Rotary will have a strong and visible presence worldwide.
Rotary will achieve enhanced capacity for friendship and service through a strong organization with increased and diverse membership.
Rotary will advance its ideals of high ethical standards, international understanding, goodwill, and peace through a membership united in service.
The Board approved granting the RI Award of Honor to the following heads of state: General Emile Lahoud, president of the Republic of Lebanon; Dr. Bakili Muluzi, president of the Republic of Malawi; Levy P. Mwanawasa S.C., president of the Republic of Zambia; Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria; and Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, president of the Philippines.
The Board designated the conveners, dates, and meeting places for RI director-nominating committees that will meet in September 2004 to select directors-nominee for election at the 2005 convention in Chicago. Directors-nominee will be selected from zones 3, 8A, 10B, 12, 16B, 26, 31, and 34.
Membership and extension
The Board agreed to extend Rotary to all of the island of Cyprus. RI will process applications for new clubs in Cyprus at the earliest possible time. The Board also lifted the moratorium on Rotary extension in Tajikistan.
After consulting with clubs in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Kazakhstan, the Board expanded the boundaries of District 2430 to include Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan, and those of District 2450 to include Armenia and Georgia. Unless the majority of clubs in the present districts 2430 and 2450 object, these changes will go into effect on 1 September 2004.
Districts are now required to appoint a training committee with the district trainer as chair. Clubs are encouraged to appoint a Rotary Foundation committee to coordinate Foundation-related goals and activities.
A Rotary club’s paid administrative staff will be given access to the club’s membership data via the business portal on the RI Web site.
Programs and communications
The Board revised the Rotary Fellowships program as follows:
- Though fellowships are not required to carry insurance, they are encouraged to conduct a risk assessment and secure appropriate coverage.
- Fellowships must set their dues at a reasonable amount, limited to that necessary for administrative costs. They must also distribute an annual financial statement.
- Fellowships involved in service projects must work through the existing structure of Rotary clubs and districts.
- RI will now provide space at the international convention for fellowship groups to meet, where possible.
The Board approved a revised list of insurance coverage recommended for Rotary Youth Exchange students. Host clubs, districts, or multidistrict groups should determine the minimum levels of such coverage necessary for inbound exchange students.
The Board formally accepted the proposal of districts 1470 and 2390 to hold the 2006 RI Convention in Malmö, Sweden, and Copenhagen, Denmark, subject to the general secretary's successful negotiation of all necessary convention arrangements. The Board also reviewed arrangements for the 2007 New Orleans convention and the 2008 Los Angeles convention
Recognizing that RI’s general surplus fund was significantly above 100 percent of the highest level of annual expenses during the most recent three-year period, the Board authorized limited expenditure of operating reserves during 2004-05. The Board adopted a 2004-05 budget projecting revenues of US$71.6 million, including the use of up to $6 million of operating reserves, and expenses of $71.6 million.
Board policy requires that investment earnings beyond the amount budgeted in any given fiscal year be transferred into an investment-earnings reserve fund. The fund is designed to provide a cushion for any investment earnings shortfall in a particular year. The Board agreed to limit the amount that can be transferred into the fund to $12 million.
The Board appointed Deloitte & Touche to audit RI’s books from 2004-05 through 2006-07.
February 2004 Board meeting
The third meeting of the 2003-04 RI Board of Directors was held at One Rotary Center in Evanston, Illinois, USA, 23-28 February 2004. At this meeting, the Board reviewed reports from 16 committees and recorded 78 decisions.
The Board amended its procedures for evaluating proposals to consolidate existing districts or to establish additional districts. The amended procedures are available from the Secretariat upon request.
The Board rescinded the policy that encouraged joint Rotary zone institutes in continental Europe and Africa, and requested that future institute conveners consult among themselves to determine how zones 10-18 should be grouped for institute purposes.
Membership and extension
To enhance new member orientation and education, the Board agreed that, starting in 2004-05, the RI president will send welcome letters to new Rotarians.
Programs and communications
The Board selected 106 recipients of the 2003-04 RI Service Above Self Award, which recognizes exemplary humanitarian service provided on a continuing basis by Rotarians who might otherwise go unrecognized. The names of the recipients will be announced at the end of the Rotary year.
The Board approved three main topics for discussion at the 2004-05 Rotary zone institutes: the 2004-05 president’s emphases (the family of Rotary, health concerns, literacy and education, and water), PolioPlus, and membership.
An External Relations Best Cooperative Projects Award has been established to recognize outstanding club service projects done in cooperation with other organizations at a local, national, or international level. Beginning in 2004-05, governors may submit up to five nominations from clubs in their districts; projects requiring active involvement with international humanitarian organizations will be given priority. All entries that meet the award criteria will be honored with a certificate.
A special arrangement of the march from Beethoven's Overture to Egmont was confirmed as the Rotary anthem. RI is commissioning an original recording of the anthem so it can be made available for sale to Rotarians.
At its October 2003 meeting, the Board approved new insurance and indemnification requirements for Rotary Fellowships and requested that fellowships comply with the requirements by 30 June 2004. The Board postponed the effective date for such requirements to 1 July 2005.
The Board recognized the Humanitarian Service Resource Fellowship, which seeks to “encourage and foster the ideal of service, encourage humanitarian projects at the local, national, and international levels, exchange knowledge in particular service areas, and serve humanity.”
The Board made the following amendments to the Standard Rotaract Club Constitution:
- Rotaract clubs now have 180 days to find a new sponsor Rotary club if RI terminates their sponsor club.
- A sponsor Rotary club may now determine how many Rotarians should serve on its Rotaract committee.
- Rotaractors are no longer required to request permission to attend a meeting of a Rotary club.
- Rotaractors are now permitted to make up a missed club meeting by participating in a club service project or club-sponsored community event.
Rotaract clubs, districts, and multidistrict information organizations are encouraged to produce regionally appropriate promotional materials. The Board also encourages Rotaract clubs to participate in twin club relationships.
The Board encourages Rotary clubs and districts to promote intercountry committees.
The Board reviewed arrangements for the 2004 Osaka convention and the 2006 Malmö-Copenhagen convention. The Board also looked with favor on the 2012 RI Convention being held in Australia, Brazil, Malaysia, or Thailand.
An International Institute will be held 17-18 June 2005 in Chicago. The registration fees shall be US$155 for Rotarians and $140 for guests.
The Board amended its policy regarding clubs’ past-due financial obligations. Effective with 1 July 2004 per capita dues, a terminated club must secure reinstatement within one year of its termination date to retain its charter, name, and history. Furthermore, a club will only be able revise its membership list within one year of a semiannual report due date.
The Board recommends that a Rotarian who has outstanding financial obligations to RI in excess of US$100 for more than 180 days be removed from any current appointment or assignment by the RI president or Foundation trustee chair, as appropriate.
October 2003 Board meeting
The second meeting of the RI Board of Directors in 2003-04 was held at Rotary World Headquarters in Evanston, Illinois, USA, from 29 September to 3 October 2003. At this meeting, the Board reviewed reports from 13 committees and recorded 117 decisions.
The Board expanded its policy governing the use of the Rotary Marks by RI officers and other Rotary senior leaders. Incoming, current, and past officers of RI and those Rotarians appointed by the president or the Board to serve in various capacities may use the Rotary Marks in printed or electronic publications associated with their role as an RI leader. However, they cannot use the Rotary Marks in conjunction with the trademarks or on the letterhead of any other organization, or for any commercial purpose. When using the Rotary Marks on a Web site developed in relation to their Rotary leadership role, such individuals must ensure that the Web site clearly indicates that it is not under RI’s control.
Membership and extension
To support membership development and retention, the Board encourages
- District governors to organize clubs that appeal to New Generations club members and to appoint New Generations subcommittees
- Governors-elect to give greater emphasis to membership development discussion when planning presidents-elect training seminars
- District Rotary Foundation alumni chairs to pursue alumni as prospective members
- Clubs and districts to establish family of Rotary committees and to implement appropriate membership retention programs
- Clubs to devote one meeting to the discussion of membership development and retention issues during August (Membership Month)
Retired persons inducted into active membership in a Rotary club shall use their former profession as their classification, but this will not be counted toward the club’s limit of members in a single classification. Club classification rosters shall not include retired Rotarians.
Programs and communications
Rotary World will now be published four rather than five times annually. It will be produced in January, April, July, and October each year.
The Rotarian magazine will no longer display advertising from organizations that seek donations from Rotarians to support their own humanitarian and educational programs.
When evaluating the benefits of a potential cooperative relationship with another organization, RI will require the organization to demonstrate its financial health by providing annual audited accounts.
The Board endorsed the concept of a Rotary Centennial song. Rotarians are encouraged to submit original pieces of music that could serve this purpose to the International Fellowship of Rotarian Musicians by 12 December 2003. The fellowship will make recommendations regarding a centennial song to the Board at its February 2004 meeting.
The Board approved the following new Rotary Fellowships:
- Fellowship of Rotarians for Mine Action
- Post-Polio Survivors and Associates Fellowship
- Rotarian Fellowship for Fighting AIDS
- Rotarian Fellowship for Population and Development
- Rotarian Fellowship of Quilters and Fiber Artists
- Rotary’s Global History Fellowship (An Internet Project)
Rotary Fellowships are now required to indemnify and hold harmless RI from any liability arising from their activities and to purchase appropriate liability insurance. Existing fellowships must comply with the new indemnification and insurance requirements by 30 June 2004. The Board also now requires fellowship chairs or administrative heads to be active Rotarians.
The Board encourages district governors to organize district-level fellowship activities with a view to advancing the Object of Rotary.
At its May 2003 meeting, due to budgetary constraints, the Board agreed not to fund 2004 preconvention meetings for Rotary Youth Exchange officers, Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA), and Rotaract. Noting that local Rotarians are keen on arranging an official Youth Exchange officers meeting before the 2004 Osaka convention, the Board agreed that a local committee may organize such an event at no cost to RI and without RI involvement. The Board also agreed that official RYLA and Rotaract workshops will be held in conjunction with the Osaka convention.
The Board accepted the proposal of the 2005 Chicago Host Organization Committee (districts 6420, 6440, 6450, 6460, and 6540) to hold the 2005 Chicago convention 18-22 June 2005. A convention registration rebate is available to all Rotary districts that register more Rotarians, spouses, and guests over 18 prior to 31 March 2005 than 2 percent of the Rotarians in the district. Districts that achieve this goal will receive a rebate after the convention.
The Board tentatively selected Seoul, Korea, as the site for the 2009 RI Convention and San Diego, California, USA, as the site for the International Assembly from 2009 through 2001.
Observing that a significant number of clubs consistently fail to pay their RI per capita dues in a timely manner, the Board modified the collection cycle for clubs with financial obligations to RI:
- Clubs with financial obligations will no longer have services suspended before being terminated.
- The Board will terminate clubs with financial obligations after 180 days rather than 270 days.
- Terminated clubs seeking reinstatement will be required to pay a reinstatement fee of US$10 per member.
- After 270 days of indebtedness to RI, a club seeking reinstatement will be required to pay a charter fee as a newly admitted club.
The new collection cycle will go into effect with 1 July 2004 RI per capita dues.
District governors may now use a portion of their estimated allocations to cover expenses associated with mandatory duties performed during the five-month period before their taking office.
In view of increased volatility in financial markets in recent times, the Board agreed to allow the general secretary to adjust the conversion rates of currencies on a month-to-month basis. When the value of a currency fluctuates 3 percent or more in relation to the U.S. dollar from the prior month, the general secretary may adjust the exchange rate appropriately.
The Board appointed the firm of Deloitte & Touche to audit the books of RI for the 2003-04 fiscal year.
July 2003 Board meeting
The first meeting of the 2003-04 RI Board was held in Brisbane, Australia, on 5 June 2003.
The Board welcomed the appointment of Vice President Frank C. Collins Jr. (USA) and Treasurer Gennaro M. Cardinale (Italy), and elected Director Samuel A. Okudzeto (Ghana) as the chair of the Board’s Executive Committee. The Board also elected directors John Michael Pinson and John G. Thorne to serve on the Executive Committee.
The 2003-04 RI president's appointment of Jayantilal K. Chande, Luis Vicente Giay, and Dong Kurn Lee as trustees of The Rotary Foundation received the Board’s formal ratification.
On the recommendation of RI President Jonathan B. Majiyagbe, the Board established the 2003-04 RI committees and task forces and approved their terms of reference.
The Board designated the conveners, dates, and places of meeting for RI director-nominating committees that will meet in September 2003 to select directors-nominee for election at the 2004 Osaka convention. Directors-nominee will be selected from zones 1, 6, 9, 14, 19, 23, 27, and 29.
The Board agreed that zones 3, 8A, 10, 12, 16, 26, 31, and 34 shall select committees in 2003-04 to nominate RI directors for election at the 2005 convention.
The Board adopted specific objectives for carrying out RI’s strategic plan and, on the basis of these objectives, approved the implementation of the strategic planning process.
Membership and extension
At its June 2001 meeting, the Board created a district-level arbitration process to assist with the resolution of district-level election disputes. Noting that this arbitration process had not proved successful, the Board restored the procedure used before June 2001 of referring all district-level election disputes to the RI Election Review Committee. Under the terms of this procedure, all complaints must be accompanied by a cash bond of US$1,000.
Programs and communications
In recognition of President Majiyagbe's focus on the importance of family, the Board designated December as Family Month and discontinued Family Week during the second week of February each year.
The Board agreed that an International Institute will be held 21-22 May 2004 in Osaka, Japan. The registration fees for this institute shall be US$200 for Rotarians and $185 for guests.
The Board approved the Rotary Foundation's 2003-04 budget of US$52.4 million for all Foundation programs, with expenditures coming from unrestricted Annual Programs Fund contributions.
The 2003-04 RI budget, as adopted by the Board at its May 2003 meeting, was confirmed. The total RI budgeted expenses for 2003-04, taking into consideration decisions reached at both the May and July 2003 Board meetings, amount to $74.6 million.