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Rotary Club of Carbondale (Carbondale, Ill.) (1920-) | Southern Illinois University Special Collections Research Center

Name: Rotary Club of Carbondale (Carbondale, Ill.) (1920-)
Variant Name: Carbondale Rotary Club

Historical Note:

Rotary is an international service organization founded by Chicago lawyer Paul Harris in 1905.  Its name comes from the original practice of rotating meeting locations. Its motto is "Service above Self."  Rotary Clubs are to be comprised of one representative from each distinct type, or "classification," of business or profession  in a community.  It pursues service projects in currently five avenues of service: Club Service, Vocational Service, Community Service, International Service, and Youth Service. Rotary International is divided into districts, each of which is headed by a governor.  There is a separately chartered Rotary Foundation for fundraising and charitable activities.

The Rotary Club of Carbonale was founded under the sponsorship of the Harrisburg Rotary Club in 1920 as Club number 743.  It began with 22 members and increased to 45 within the first year.  It currently draws about half of its membership from Southern Illinois University.  The Club is governed by a board of directors, which meets once a month and consists of a president, president-elect, secretary, treasurer, immediate past president, and one or two vice presidents. There are standing committees for each avenue of service as well as administrative, membership and public relations committees.  The club currently belongs to Rotary District 6510.

The Rotary Club of Carbonale meets weekly for lunch and an educational program.  The Club raises money through membership dues, donations and fundraisers for service projects in the community and around the world.  Current projects included Polio Plus, Rotary's campaign to eradicate polio throughout the world, the Belize Children's Project to assist physically disabled children, the Water Wells in Mali project, a school reading project, and an international youth exchange project.  It also funds several scholarships and contriburtes to local charities.  The club's members participate in Group Study Exchanges (GSEs) with Rotarians from other countries.


Rotary Club of Carbondale records

Rotary International Website,, accessed 6/26/2014.

Rotary Club of Carbondale Website:, accessed 6/26/2014.

Note Author: Walter D. Ray

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