Posted by Mary Lou Harrison on Jul 16, 2018
Assistant District Governor Shirley Ross was very pleased to introduce Mary Lou Harrison, the 2018-2019 District 7070 District Governor.  Mary Lou is the daughter of a Rotarian and a Rotary Ann.  Her father is still active in Rotary.  Mary Lou grew up volunteering and her family hosted Rotary Exchange Students in 1983.  Mary Lou is a chartered member of the Rotary Club of Northumberland Sunrise, is an avid photographer, a proud Rotary Foundation benefactor, a parish administrator in downtown Toronto, has been involved in catering many events and is an editor of a community newspaper.  A real change maker.  Married to her husband Dave, they have two children.
Mary Lou Harrison started with a big thank you to the Rotary Club of Belleville for sponsoring the Cambellford Club 90 years ago.  Mary Lou joined Rotary when someone asked and after much prodding from friends, attended her first District Conference hosted by the Rotary Club of Belleville under Bill MacKay's leadership.  This event became an eye opener for her.  She heard Stephen Lewis speak about HIV/AIDS, a topic she thought she knew about, but realized that her knowledge was lacking.  She became hooked and took on the President role at Whitby Sunrise.  Being in Belleville today reminded her of that event and luncheon.  Rotary is important work.  She's never forgotten so thank you to Bill MacKay.  The photo below was taken recently at a District ceremony with the passing of the District Governor pin to Mary Lou Harrison (on the left) standing with the Be The Inspiration banner.
This year's Rotary International Theme is Be The Inspiration, a theme that goes well with Service Above Self.  Rotary's new vision statement is "Together, we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change -- across the globe, in our communities and ourselves".  Mary Lou is an editor at heart and to simplify the vision, she has come up with one word that captures the vision -- DO.  When we do, we make a difference.  Mary Lou congratulated Andrew Bandler on being the 99th President of the Rotary Club of Belleville, an opportunity for him to bring people together, look for opportunities, bring more people to the table and inspire those around him.  Take  There are big needs in the communities.  People join Rotary because they want to help locally and internationally, balanced between these needs.  Through Rotary Foundation, every Rotarian has an opportunity to get involved in lots of great projects.  Eradicate polio is one huge opportunity., a race to finish, to get to zero!  A Rotarian can donate monthly, weekly, on line.  Easy as that.  Our Club and the District can create change by getting back more than we give.
Three key words -- UNITE......ACT.......CHANGE.  So ask yourself where can you help or where are you best placed to be an inspiration.  District Governor Mary Lou Harrison is looking forward to hearing from the Rotary Club of Belleville as to how the Club and every member will be the inspiration.
Past President Len Kennedy thanked District Governor Mary Lou Harrison for her insights into the coming Rotary year and for bringing inspiration with her and sharing it with us.