A compendium of Rotary news
In the 1930s, Ole Kirk Christiansen, a Danish carpenter, had a
wooden sign hanging on his wall that read, Det bedste er ikke
for godt: "Only the best is good enough." Today, Christiansen is
remembered as the inventor of Lego, the colorful plastic bricks
beloved by children around the world. But in the early days of
the Lego company, its signature product was a wooden duck – one
built to the highest standards, out of aged beech, with three
coats of clear varnish. Lego's company history tells how
Christiansen used his ducks to teach a lesson in quality to his
son, Godtfred Kirk:
One evening, when I came into the office, I said to my father:
"It's been a good day today, Dad. We've earned a little more."
"Oh," said Dad, "what do you mean?" "Well, I've just been to the
station with two boxes of our toy ducks for the Danish Co op.
Normally they get three coats of varnish, but since it's for the
Co-op, I only gave them two. So I saved the business a bit of
money." He looked at me in dismay. "Godtfred, fetch those boxes
back. Unpack them and give the ducks another coat of varnish.
You're not going to bed until the work's done – and you'll do it
all on your own." There was no arguing with Dad. And it was a
lesson for me about what quality meant.
Today, Lego's quality standards are legendary, and its products
are the most popular toys in the world: Lego pieces outnumber
humans 86 to 1.
We all recognize that this success stems directly from Lego's
business practices – its insistence on quality, efficiency, and
innovation. I compare this with our efforts in governance and
accountability in Rotary, and realize that sometimes we fall
short of the standards expected.
The leaders at the Rotary International, zone, district, and
club levels have to maintain the highest standards in
governance. The RI president and directors must serve the
membership in a meaningful manner; zone leaders must deliver on
the investment Rotary makes in them; district leaders must
provide dynamic leadership in the district and focus on
transparency in accounting and timely reporting of financials;
and club leaders must adhere to proper reporting functions and
get their clubs onto Rotary Club Central.
Just as Christiansen refused to consider sending a lesser
product to any of his clients, so should we refuse to consider
giving a lesser effort to any of our work. We must always demand
the best of ourselves – in our professional lives, and
especially in our Rotary work.
For in Rotary, what is our product? It is not wooden ducks or
plastic bricks. It is education, water, health, and peace. It is
hope, and it is life itself. For this work, only our best is
good enough. I ask you all to remember this – and to do your
very best to Be a Gift to the World.
K.R. "Ravi" Ravindran
RI President 2015-16
TRUSTEE CHAIR'S MESSAGE
The Rotary Foundation has traditionally used a few annual goals
to guide its planning for the next Rotary year. However, there
is a more comprehensive plan in place for the current Rotary
year. At their October 2014 meeting, the Trustees utilized the
spirit of the RI strategic plan by approving four priorities to
stay in place for the next three years:
1. End polio, now and forever.
2. Strengthen Rotarians' knowledge, engagement, and financial
support of The Rotary Foundation.
3. Increase the quality and impact of Rotary's humanitarian
service effort through Foundation grants and the six areas of
4. Enhance the image and awareness of the Foundation's record of
achievements, particularly the success of PolioPlus and its
100-year record of doing good in the world.
In addition to the agreed four priorities for the next three
years, the Trustees also approved four measurable goals for each
of the priorities. Therefore, we now have 16 measurable goals to
guide our efforts. The goals can be changed each year as
progress is made on achievement of the priorities, but for the
current year our course is set – and for the first time, it is
I will be sharing some of the goals with you in future editions,
but it is worth noting that the advent of measurable goals for
the Foundation came at a propitious time. RI President K.R.
Ravindran is a proponent of key performance indicators (KPIs)
for the work of Rotarians in leadership positions, and the new
measurable goals made it much easier to develop some KPIs for
our regional Rotary Foundation coordinators and endowment/major
gift advisers. The KPIs are still an experiment, and they will
need refinement and development, but they are a step in the
right direction as we try to take a longer look ahead each year!
Chair Rotary Foundation 2014-15
IAN RISELEY IS THE CHOICE OF THE
AS RI PRESIDENT FOR 2017/18
Ian H.S. Riseley, of the Rotary Club of Sandringham, Victoria,
Australia, is the selection of the Nominating Committee for
President of Rotary International in 2017-18. He will become the
president-nominee on 1 October if no other candidates challenge
Riseley says that meaningful partnerships with corporations and
other organizations are crucial to Rotary’s future.
“We have the programs and personnel and others have available
resources,” says Riseley. “Doing good in the world is everyone’s
goal. We must learn from the experience of the polio eradication
program to maximize our public awareness exposure for future
Riseley is a practicing accountant and principal of Ian Riseley
and Co., which specializes in advising local and international
businesses, and has a strong interest in international affairs.
He received the AusAID Peacebuilder Award from the Australian
government in 2002 in recognition of his work in Timor-Leste. He
also received the Order of Australia medal in 2006 for service
to the Australian community.
“Governments see Rotary as positive representatives of a civil
society,” he says. “We should work with them to advocate for
peace and conflict resolution, just as we are advocating for
A member since 1978, Riseley has served Rotary as treasurer,
director, trustee, RI Board Executive Committee member, task
force member, committee member and chair, and district governor.
He is also a former member of the Australian Polio Eradication
Private Sector Campaign and a recipient of The Rotary
Foundation’s Service Award for a Polio-Free World. He and his
wife, Juliet, are Multiple Paul Harris Fellows, Major Donors,
and Bequest Society members.
The Nominating Committee’s members are Ann-Britt Åsebol, Rotary
Club of Falun-Kopparvågen, Sweden; John T. Blount, Rotary Club
of Sebastopol, California, USA; Hee-Byung Chae, Rotary Club of
Seoul West, Seoul, Korea; Serge Gouteyron, Rotary Club of
Valenciennes-Denain aérodrome Nord, France; Frederick W. Hahn
Jr., Rotary Club of Independence, Missouri, USA; Stuart B. Heal,
Rotary Club of Cromwell, New Zealand; Paul Knyff, Rotary Club of
Weesp (Vechtstreek-Noord), Netherlands; Masahiro Kuroda, Rotary
Club of Hachinohe South, Aomori, Japan; Anne L. Matthews
(chair), Rotary Club of Columbia East, South Carolina, USA;
Michael D. McCullough, Rotary Club of Trenton, Michigan, USA;
David D. Morgan, Rotary Club of Porthcawl, Mid Glamorgan, Wales;
Gideon M. Peiper, Rotary Club of Ramat Hasharon, Israel; José
Alfredo Sepúlveda, Rotary Club of Pachuca Plata, Hidalgo,
Mexico; P.C. Thomas, Rotary Club of Nilgiris West, Tamil Nadu,
India; Alceu Antimo Vezozzo, Rotary Club of Curitiba, Paraná,
Brazil; and C. Grant Wilkins, Rotary Club of Denver, Colorado,
Source: Ryan Hyland, Rotary International
Dr Dipak R. Sarbadhikari
PP RC Calcutta, RID 3291
Curator Rotary Archives
Dr Dipak R. Sarbadhikari
PP RC Calcutta, RID 3291, India