Kew 50th anniversary


Paul Harris said that Rotary …is not an organisation for retrospection…but one hundred members and friends of the Rotary Club of Kew thoroughly enjoyed celebrating its 50th anniversary at a very happy lunch party at Kew Golf Club on Friday last 16 June.

Kew was sponsored by Hawthorn in 1967 – a time of strong growth for Rotary in District 9800 – and in proposing the formal toast to Kew to mark the half century,  PDG Bernie Walshe remarked on the close bond the two clubs have always enjoyed.

He was joined at the  lunch by two of Hawthorn’s other PDGs, Dennis Shore and David Rosback, and a large contingent of Hawthorn Rotarians. We were also honoured by a strong representation from District including DG Neville John and Rebecca, PGD Murray Verso and Irene, AG Ros McMorrow and John and Marjorie Gerlinger, and members from other clubs

Keith Holdsworth who died in 2008, was the last of our charter members, but the memory of these pioneering members who had faithfully transplanted the rotary principles and practice from Hawthorn to Kew 50 years earlier, was honoured in a toast by John Kennedy. John is our longest serving member with 52 years of Rotary service, 45 of them at Kew.

Our longest serving Kew member, PP Dr Bill Pick, who joined the Club in its first year, was also in attendance, as were 21 other past presidents who were all introduced to the meeting to a  warm and appreciative reception.

Ron McCartney prepared and put a 50 year history booklet in each place before lunch and  the diversity of projects, the satisfaction of service shared, and the warmth of benign friendships, were recalled in many conversations over lunch

Two special Awards were presented: Peter Hoban – described as the ‘face of the Rotary Club of Kew’ for many years, was honoured as the ‘Club man half century’  with an award presented by PDG Dennis Shore.

Jill Forsyth’s remarkable contribution was marked with an award presented by PDG Murray Verso for ‘exceptional service above self’. Her selfless work for the Alola Foundation in Timor Leste, the Good Deeds Good Reads shop in Camberwell and the recent Solomon Islands Diabetes education initiative – all initiated and substantially implemented by her, were noted amongst the  highlights.

Kristy Bradie, our newest member emailed after the event – ‘... It was really great and hugely inspirational for me as a new member.’ I’m confident Paul Harris would cut us a bit of slack every 50 years or so.

Murray Chessell

Past District Governor Murray Verso a presenting the award to Jill Forsyth.

Photos :

Presentation of Certificates for 50 Year Charter Members

Past District Governor Murray Verso a presenting the award to Jill Forsyth.

DG Neville John presenting President Bob Slater with a congratulatory certificate from Rotary International.

The Club History is at

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