District governor visits Buckhannon Rotary

BUCKHANNON – Buckhannon Rotary Club members were urged to help “Light Up Rotary” when Rotary District 7530 Governor Michael Ellington visited the club this week.

Ellington, the assistant vice president of student affairs at West Virginia University, took the helm as district governor on July 1 and is currently working to make stops at all the Rotary Clubs in the district. Ellington took time to speak to members about Rotary International’s campaign, “Light Up Rotary,” and the need to attract new members.

Ellington said there are currently 11,043 members in the district, with 120 new members brought into the club last year.

“We are bringing in more people, but our numbers are going down,” he explained.

Ellington said in his job at WVU he works with the 30,000 students on everything from housing to security.

“If it takes place outside the classroom, we handle it,” he said. “Our statistics tell us that 10,000 of them (students) are doing the same thing we are – community service. We are not getting the matriculation of those students into the club. We have to have new policies to bring more people into Rotary.”

Ellington said Rotary has several groups that offer different activities.

“Rotary has a plethora of clubs that you can be involved with,” he said. “There are all kinds of opportunities in Rotary that you can be part of.”

He urged local Rotarians to take part in several events like the Rotary Leadership Institute, slated for Oct. 11 in Morgantown, the Rotary District Conference slated for May 8-10, 2015, and Rotary Day in Grafton on May 25, 2015.

Ellington, who lives in Grafton, said he wants as many Rotarians as possible to attend the event in Grafton. He explained it will be the same day that Grafton hosts its annual Veterans Day Parade. He said more than 10,000 people attend the parade every year.

“I want everyone to come and bring their banners and march through the parade,” he said.

Ellington said the best way for local clubs to “Light Up Rotary” is to host events to show the public what the club does. He said each club in the district is being asked to host a Rotary Day.

“The name of the game is to let people know we are here and what we do,” he said. “I am also encouraging folks to visit other clubs. I would like for folks from this club go to some others.”