BELFAST — The Belfast Rotary Club’s annual dinner last month celebrated the group’s 96-year history of service to the Belfast Community. Nearly 60 people attended in person at the Belfast Shrine Club or remotely by Zoom, recognized club and member achievements, named two Paul Harris Fellows and elected officers and directors. The club also raised “Community Care” program funds with a silent auction.

Outgoing president Richard Koralek told the crowd of members, spouses, family and guests at the June 23 dinner that “This has been an unusual year, but a successful one for Belfast Rotary. We added six members this year, bringing our total to 70, and received Gold Citation recognition from our Rotary District Governor and congratulations from the Rotary Foundation for our work on the ‘End Polio Now’ campaign.”

Incoming president John Golden, thanking Koralek for his work on the club’s behalf, laid out a busy schedule for the coming year. “Belfast Rotary will look into setting up a satellite club for people who may not be able to attend a weekly lunch meeting, and will be talking with local high schools about our sponsoring an Interact Club for students.”

Other newly installed club officers are president-elect Kristine Wentworth, vice president Steve Norman, secretary Jill Goodwin and treasurer Syrena Gatewood. New board member Dianna Fredrikson was elected to replace Duke Marston, who remains an active member and chairman of the Harbor Fest committee.

The club, whose motto is “Service Above Self,” recognized the work of a dozen board members and the heads of the more than 20 committees that carry out service projects year-round, including scholarships, holiday gifts, food pantry support, local special projects and emergency assistance, and global polio eradication. Special recognition went to Jill Goodwin and Syrena Gatewood for devoting hours every week to club administration, new member Elizabeth (“Beth”) Sterner as the club’s Rookie of the Year, and John Golden as Rotarian of the Year. Belfast dentist Dr. Michelle Morrow and Mickey Sirota were named Paul Harris Fellows in recognition of their contributions to Belfast Rotary.

A live auction raised more than $1,400 in less than 30 minutes to support the Rotary Club’s “Community Care” urgent need service program. The event, organized by Phil Carthage and led by Carthage and Duke Marston, featured everything from home-brewed beer and home-baked bread to horse manure, an original photo of Belfast harbor, and hand-crafted wooden toys, cashmere wearables and pillows. Gift certificates to Stanley Chevrolet-Buick as well as Satori, Devino and Darby’s restaurants all were “bid high.”

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