“Every whiskey contains a story”

Rüdiger Niemz. 4 June 2019, Hamburg, Germany.

Rüdiger Niemz, Rotary Club of Mondseeland, Austria, as told to Diana Schoberg. Photos by Monika Lozinska

“When I was invited to join Rotary, instead of giving a presentation about my job, as everyone is expected to do, I did a whiskey tasting.

“I became interested in whiskey when I was traveling a lot as a journalist. I was working on travel shows about foreign countries. You would come back very late from the filming and editing, and then you’d meet somebody at the bar. You’d start talking, and start sharing whiskey. You don’t drink whiskey to get drunk. It’s part of an exciting lifestyle. Continue reading

“My role was to educate”

Ella Lacey. 1 June 2019, Hamburg, Germany.

Ella Phillips Lacey, a member of the Rotary Club of Carbondale, Illinois, USA, as told to Jenny Llakmani. Photos by Monika Lozinska

“I was a professor at Southern Illinois University’s school of medicine for 22 years. My Ph.D. is in health education. At the end of 1994, I retired and joined the Peace Corps. It was a transitional step for me. I think it’s a great opportunity for people who are retired. When you’re working in cultures as different from yours as Malawi was from mine, it’s great to have some life experiences already. Sometimes when we first leave college, we think we’ve learned all we ever need to know. Continue reading

“I wanted to be someone that could alleviate for other families what my family had felt”

Alexandria Ritchie, 2 June 2019, Hamburg, Germany.

Alexandria Ritchie, a member of the Rotaract Club of Virginia Commonwealth University and the Rotary Club of James River (Richmond), Virginia, USA, as told to Diana Schoberg. Photos by Monika Lozinska

“I decided when I was 14 that I wanted to be a physician. It was when my parents told me about Oliver.

“Oliver is my older brother. He was born with Trisomy 13 (also called Patau syndrome), a chromosome dysfunction. He was alive for a day. I never had the opportunity to meet him. I remember when my parents were talking with me about it. I felt this pull – I wanted to be someone that could alleviate for other families what my family had felt. Continue reading

“I am part of something bigger than myself”

Eduardo Rodrigues da Costa, Rotary Peace Fellow 2010-12; Global Grant Scholar at University of Manitoba, Canada, as told to Diana Schoberg. Photos by Monika Lozinska

“I was the first Rotary Peace Fellow from the Brazilian Amazon. The Amazon rainforest has a number of conflicts right now related to development, deforestation, and local indigenous people. I was interested in how we can promote peace by promoting sustainable development. Continue reading

Follow all the action from Hamburg

Capture the Moment in Hamburg, Germany, 1-5 June.

Whether you’ll be attending the 2019 Rotary International Convention in Hamburg, Germany, from 1 to 5 June, or you simply want to keep up with everything that’s happening there, you can find all the latest news on riconvention.org and social media using #Rotary19. Continue reading

Climate change and The Four-Way Test

Rick Olson and children

Rick Olson visits with children in Tanzania.

By Rick Olson, Rotary Club of Prior Lake, Minnesota, USA

Climate change is an impersonal, ambiguous term, which denotes negative impact on people around the world. But on a recent trip to Tanzania in Africa I met some of the innocents who will be most affected by the increased droughts caused by carbon dioxide emissions. Continue reading

5 things to see in Hamburg: Tips from local Rotaractors

The Miniatur Wunderland

Unforgettable moments are made at Rotary conventions, as you connect with members from all over the world. It’s also an opportunity to explore a place you have never been before. We asked local members of Rotaract what they would recommend people see during the 2019 Rotary International Convention in Hamburg, Germany, 1-5 June. Here are their suggestions. (Remember to register by 15 December to save!) Continue reading

Why attend the Rotaract preconvention?

2018 Rotaract Preconvention

Rotaractors take a selfie during the Rotaract Preconvention in Toronto, Canada, 22 June 2018. Photo by Alyce Henson/Rotary International

By Florian Wackermann, Rotary Club of Germering, Germany

You don’t have to be a Rotaractor to enjoy the Rotaract Preconvention. In fact, there are plenty of reasons for Rotarians to attend, as well. Perhaps one of the best is getting to know this vibrant part of the Rotary family and building connections that will welcome these younger members into the Rotary fold. Continue reading

Why I love YEO Preconvention

Viktorija Trimbel and her daughter, Gabija, a 2010 Rotary Youth Exchange student.

By Viktorija Trimbel, District 1462 (Lithuania) Youth Exchange Chair, and Governor nominee for 2020-2021

Days before the Rotary Convention, over 500 Youth Exchange Officers (YEOs) from all over the world get together to learn and share best practices. The YEO Preconvention is my favorite Rotary meeting. From my past experience, I have found the challenges of youth exchange are pretty universal – selecting students, overseeing behavior, finding host families, and involving Rotary clubs. It is very interesting to learn solutions from other districts. Continue reading

See you in Toronto

The flag ceremony at the opening session.

The Rotary world is gathering in Toronto to celebrate our largest event of the year, the annual convention. It’s a time of great excitement as members share ideas, find inspiration, and reconnect with old and new friends. You can follow all of the action on our convention page, where we will be live blogging and tweeting from the general sessions, House of Friendship, workshops and more. Live coverage will include videos, interviews, daily news stories and our Convention Minute, a quick video recap of the previous day’s events and look ahead. You can also watch a livestream of the general sessions and select breakout sessions, and register for next year’s convention in Hamburg, Germany.