E-club recruits former Rotary Peace Fellows for global project
Daniel Sturgeon (far left), a member of the Rotary E-Club of the Southwest, USA, and other former peace fellows gather at the 2011 RI Convention in New Orleans, Louisiana. Photo by Alyce Henson/Rotary Images
Daniel Sturgeon knew he’d be a Rotarian someday. He just imagined a day far off in the future, not one a few days shy of his 30th birthday. But since 2007, this former Rotary Peace Fellow has been a member of two Rotary clubs.
Today, Sturgeon and his current club, the Rotary E-Club of the Southwest, USA, are encouraging all alumni -- peace fellows, in particular -- to make today the day they join Rotary.
“We Rotarians are poor stewards of Foundation funds if we don’t reach back and tap the intellectual capital that we’ve created through our investment in the Rotary Peace Fellowship,” says Sturgeon, who was a 2004-06 peace fellow at International Christian University in Tokyo.
During a rare in-person meeting in April, the Southwest e-club decided to make world peace its international service project. Members set a goal of recruiting 50 former peace fellows from around the world to join their club over the next three years.
Sturgeon envisions his club becoming a resource for Rotarians seeking advice and help with their club’s or district’s peace projects.
“With their academic background and field experience, we can work smarter and be more effective. Many fellows are already with nongovernmental agencies in the area of peace; they’re everywhere we want to be,” says Sturgeon, who works as a political analyst and speechwriter for the Consulate General of Japan in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.
Fellow e-club member Larry Levinson agrees and adds that alumni will also benefit from the collaboration. “Many of them aren’t leveraging Rotary’s energy, money, and expertise to accomplish their goals,” he says.
Both Rotarians are optimistic that they’ll be able to achieve their club’s membership goal. To ensure success, they’re employing a variety of techniques that any club looking for an alumni connection could use.
Just ask. “Recruiting for an e-club is no different from a regular Rotary club. You just have to ask,” Sturgeon says.
Build a relationship It may not result in membership, Sturgeon says, but a relationship with alumni may lead to other opportunities for involvement.
Remove the barriers Be flexible about meeting times, dues, and attendance.
Promote involvement Rotary’s strength is that it doesn’t want “paper” members, Sturgeon says, and alumni want to make a difference.
Provide networking opportunities Sturgeon says that for alumni and other young adults, networking is simply a different term for what Rotary calls vocational service and fellowship.
Find more tips for making an alumni connection.
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