I am beyond excited and truly honored to serve as the President of the Rotary Club of Rohnert Park-Cotati.  I look forward to the upcoming year and leading our Club as we continue to make a difference in our local community and in the world.
 
My Rotary experience has come full circle. While attending middle school in my hometown of Redlands, California, I was selected as a Rotary Student of the Month. As a high school senior, I won the 4 Way Speech Contest by participating at the local and district level. I vowed then to join this amazing service club that invested in my future and to give back…so here I am! I am very appreciative of the opportunities that Rotary has presented me and am proud to call myself a Rotarian.
 
Our club members are the movers and shakers of Rohnert Park and Cotati. We are blessed to have a group that cares so deeply about the local and international community. We are by far the liveliest and most entertaining bunch that you can meet at 7am on Tuesday mornings.
 
Our Rotarians are constantly making a difference and enriching the lives of many.  This is fitting because the theme for Rotary International is “Rotary Making a Difference” which this club has been doing for 41 years! Our club meets monthly to serve seniors with the Helping Hands Program making repairs in the homes of senior citizens who otherwise would not be able to afford such help.  Further, we make a difference in the lives of 144 students with our backpack program, providing nutritious food to children who would otherwise not have food over the weekend. In December our club members collect and wrap hundreds of gifts and dress as Santa to deliver toys to local children.  We make a difference by supporting literacy, providing all third graders in Rohnert Park-Cotati with a dictionary.  We provide thousands of dollars in scholarships for students at Sonoma State, Rancho Cotate High, Tech High and Credo high schools.  We make a difference by honoring the community volunteers, educators, businesses and public service officers by hosting a Salute to the Community dinner.  We have made a difference globally by taking the lead on international projects such as the Rio Ameca river clean-up project, building a commercial kitchen for a school in Mexico , providing bicycles for the teachers in our adopted village of Bukaleba, Uganda and participating in a global grant to provide clear water for six villages in Ecuador.
 
            My Presidential theme is CELEBRATION! I will focus on honoring and celebrating those club members, community leaders, war veterans, first responders, businesses, teachers and students who have made a difference and exemplify Rotary’s motto: Service Above Self.
 
            Join us in making a difference, follow us on Facebook and feel free to join us in a community project and attend our lively meetings.
 
Yours in Service,
Heather-Ann Young
 
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