Rotary was founded by Paul P. Harris in Chicago in 1905. In 1910, the National Association of Rotary Clubs was formed, to be followed two years later by the development of the International Association of Rotary Clubs. The name of this organization was changed to Rotary International in 1922, the year the Fredericton Club was formed.
The Rotary Club of Fredericton was sponsored by the Rotary Club of Saint John and received its charter on June 1, 1922. The founding meeting was held in the private railway car of the late James Woodman, then general superintendent of the Canadian Pacific Railway. The club has grown from the original 23 charter members and over the years, hundreds more have contributed to the various projects and success of the Club.
When the Club was granted its charter, it determined to follow the principles set down by Rotary International. The four-way test was, and still is, the determining factor.
1. Is it the TRUTH?
2. Is it FAIR to all concerned?
3. Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?
Service Above Self – He Profits Most Who Serves Best, is well known to Rotarians as their motto. It was introduced by Arthur Frederick Sheldon of Chicago, and never once have members of the Club looked back from serving their community.
The first activity organized by the Rotary Club of Fredericton was youth oriented and the pattern has not changed in its future efforts. One of the Club’s earliest projects, an annual Boys Sports Day, was eagerly looked forward to by the boys of the city and surrounding area. This ran from 1922 to 1931, when it was absorbed into the expanding recreational program of the City ofFredericton.
Assistance to disabled children has always been an integral part of the Club activities. The first venture in this field was the payment for eye examinations and provision of glasses for children who otherwise would not have had these problems corrected. Later, this scope was broadened to include examinations and treatment for other physical disabilities, and the provision of shoes, supports, braces and similar equipment when required. Payment for transportation costs to the Shriners Hospital in Montreal for cases requiring special operations was another memorable feature of this program. In total, activities of this nature accounted for a high percentage of the attention and resources of the Club for a number of years.
Establishment and operation of the Dr. Sterling MacFarlane Camp for handicapped children atGrand Lake in the summer of 1951 launched the local club on what has proved to be its major project over the past 50 plus years. Funding for the Camp owned by the Rotary Club of Fredericton comes mainly from the Rotary Auctions and Cash Dinners which have become annual events.
Among the other projects of Rotary, the most continuous has been the sponsoring of the annual Adventure in Citizenship conducted by the Ottawa Rotary Club. These “adventures” serve to bring students from all provinces together, in a program designed to emphasize the various aspects of Canadian citizenship. The Club also participates in an international student exchange program.
In promoting the work of Rotary, the Rotary Club of Fredericton has sponsored and organized clubs in Woodstock, Edmundston, Fredericton North, Sunrise Rotary, Oromocto, Gagetown and Minto.
A list of the Club’s past presidents follow:
|1931-32||George St. Clarke|
|1951-52||G. Herbert Kitchen|
|1977-78||L. Dale Steeves|
|1978-79||Bev F. Macauley|
|1981-82||John E. Swanton|
|1984-85||Paul V. Embleton|
|1985-86||G. Neil Sneyd|
|1987-88||Janus (Jim) Hughson|
|1988-89||Dr. Blake O’Brien|
|1989-90||Bruce H. Daniel|
|1992-93||Douglas E. Morgan|
|1993-94||G. Brian Trenholm|