Governor's Message
Rotary Fellowships Month
Fellowship is wonderful; it illuminates life’s pathway, spreads good cheer, and is worth a high price.”  -  Rotary Founder Paul Harris
June is designated as “Rotary Fellowships Month” by Rotary International to recognize the importance of international fellowship and goodwill among Rotarians with similar recreational interests, vocations, and health and medical issue-oriented interests, to promote increased participation in fellowships and increase understanding of this program.
The RI Board encourages fellowships groups to highlight activities through projects, activities, and events in celebration of “Rotary Fellowships Month” in June.
Rotary Fellowships are autonomous, international groups of Rotarians, Rotarian spouses, and Rotaractors who join together to: 
  • Share a common interest in worthwhile recreational activities (sports, hobbies, etc.) 
  • Further their vocational development through acquaintance with others of the same profession
  • Make new friends around the world 
  • Explore new opportunities for service 
  • Have fun and enhance their Rotary experience
The fellowships are so varied and include fellowships of musicians, flying, wine, yoga, whisky, bird watching, scuba diving, marathon running and so many more – about 90 different groups. You can find them here
In this time of COVID, this is an ideal way of connecting with Rotarians around the world who have similar interests – reaching out across continents and oceans to make new Rotarian friends.
One of the main reasons people join Rotary is for fellowship and fellowship is why people stay in Rotary as they get to know wonderful people from all different walks of life. Enjoying fellowship has been difficult since we have had to stay in place and self-isolate. 
Humans are social beings, for the most part, and in Rotary, the social aspect is exceptionally important. I encourage clubs to meet virtually and frequently. Meet half an hour before or after a Rotary meeting just to chat and catch up on news. Or schedule a separate meeting just for socializing – a virtual happy hour with no need for a designated driver.
Rotary Connects The World so let’s stay connected.
Be safe, stay healthy, enjoy Rotary.
Please note that there will be a special edition of the Peace Arch Journal at the end of June.

Coffee Corner with Holger Knaack
When our RI President Elect, Holger Knaack, announced his theme—“Rotary Opens Opportunities”—little did he know that the entire world would be shut down by an pandemic, and we would be doing most of our connecting on the internet. But, this change made it possible for RIPE Holger to join DG Brad for his first Coffee Corner on 12 May.
RIPE Holger is a member of the Rotary Club of Herzogtum Laurenburg-Molln, Germany. He joined us from his home. He opined that he may be the first RI President in history not to travel during the 365 days of his presidency.
In announcing his theme earlier this year, RIPE Holger urged Rotarians to embrace change so Rotary can expand and thrive. He continued this theme during the Coffee Corner using the forced change to doing Rotary online as an opportunity and a change worth embracing. Although we all would like things to change back to normal, he asked us not to go back to the ways we did Rotary before the epidemic. For example, maybe continue to have one meeting a month on Zoom.
As you might expect with a Coffee Corner, RIPE Holger spent over half the time answering questions from District 5050 Rotarians. During that time, he expressed his concern that with the downturn in the world economy, that Rotarians will give less to the RI Foundation, including PolioPlus. 
2020 Rotary Virtual Convention

Save the Date for Rotary International's Free Virtual Event

"Now More than Ever, Rotary Connects the World: The 2020 Rotary Virtual Convention"
When: 20-26 June

Schedule at a glance - all time listed are United States Pacific Time

General sessions

Saturday, 20 June

General Session 1: Together, We Connect

  • 06:00-07:15

Sunday, 21 June

General Session 2: Together, We Learn 

  • 06:00-07:15

Featured Breakout Sessions

Monday – Friday, 22- 26 June

Each day, one breakout session will be offered at each of the following times:

  • 6:00 – 7:00
  • 10:00 – 11:00
  • 4:00 – 5:00

Lead District 5050 in 2023-2024 - Are You that Person?
Being District Governor is one of the most important roles in the District. It is rewarding, challenging, exciting, and highly responsible. It is the epitome of Service Above Self. The District Governor provides leadership, inspiration, and guidance to Rotary clubs under the general supervision of the Board of Directors.  
In each district, the Governor serves as the official representative of Rotary International and is charged with upholding the Constitution and Bylaws of Rotary International, fostering success in their District at the Club level.
The District Governor is nominated by the Clubs in the District, and all qualified candidates are interviewed by the District Nominating Committee, comprised of five Past District Governors. Each District Governor serves a one-year term, but that individual often fills many roles in the lead-up to, and following their year as District Governor.
Who will be the District Governor in 2023-2024?
It could be YOU!
Someone You Know
who should be the District Governor in 2023-2024!
Once completed, the application is to be sent to Chair of the Nominating Committee, Lindagene Coyle. Call Lindagene if you require any additional information at 604-220-6856.

PolioPlus Campaign Needs Our Support
Rotarians in our District have been very generous in giving to the PolioPlus Fund. As of 30 April, you have given $137,549 to The Rotary Foundation to help in the fight against polio. 
Rotarians around the world have raised $34 million for PolioPlus and with the 2:1 matching grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the total will be $102 million.  
This is wonderful news BUT, this is far short of what Rotary planned because if Rotarians raise $50 million then the Gates Foundation will match that total 2:1 for a grand total of $150 million.
If we don’t increase our current amount of $34 million to $50 million, we lose the opportunity to get $32 million from the Gates Foundation and that would be a shame as it would help us keep our promise to the children of the world.
I know many of us are facing some difficult economic times but if you haven’t given to the PolioPlus Fund and are able to, please give. If you have given before, even a $10 donation would help. 
Rotary will reach its goal only if we participate. Thank you again for your generosity.
District Governor Brad
District 5050 Clubs
Chilliwack After Hours/Skagit/South Everett-Mukilteo/La Conner/
Whatcom North/Bellingham Sunrise/Abbotsford
James Monroe, Editor
I continued visiting more Clubs in our District last month. I encourage you to visit other Clubs via the online meeting platforms. Click this link for the up-to-date list of online meetings in the District. Over these two months, I have found that, on average, approximately half of each Club's membership participates in the online meetings. This could be for a variety of reasons, but, I mention this because if your Club is meeting online and you haven't seen someone for a while, please reach out to them. Perhaps, they have internet connectivity issues that haven't been resolved yet. Or, maybe they don't know that they can call into the meeting by telephone.
At the Skagit meeting (below), Brian Evie, CEO of Skagit Regional Health, talked about how his organization has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic. Skagit Regional Health operates two hospitals as well as 15 community and specialty clinics in Skagit and Snohomish Counties. Admissions are down, furloughs have occurred and their gross income is down. This is indicative of health care systems across District 5050.
The featured speaker at the South Everett-Mukilteo meeting was Dave Porubek who talked about what viruses are and how they're built. With this background he then went into detail about the COVID-19 virus. It is a RNA-based virus as opposed to a DNA-based virus. This makes a difference in how we mitigate the affects.
The La Conner Club discussed plans for their upcoming auction (2020 Through the Looking Glass) which will be entirely online in August. They would like members to create short video testimonials about what Rotary means to them. Does this online fundraising give you ideas for your Club?
I visited the Whatcom North Club meeting mid-month. Some members were sad that the Youth Service Awards have been cancelled this year. They been doing it for 32 years. Many events that our Clubs are involved in have been cancelled. Many community and regional events have been cancelled this year. We need to find alternative ways to be engaged with our communities. As an organization, we've been through challenging times before and persevered. We can do it this time as well.
We want to welcome new Rotarian Sukh Gill of the Abbotsford Club. He was inducted online at their 22 May meeting. Welcome to Rotary Sukh! At the same meeting, the featured speaker was Megan Gapp of Archway Community Services, a non-profit multi-service community agency with 24 locations in the Fraser Valley Abbotsford area. They also have one location in India! Megan talked about food insecurity and how this affects everyone. Her agency would like to convert an existing building into a food bank preparation place to serve more families in the region. It would be known as the Abbotsford Rotary Club Food Centre. One of the positive outcomes would be to get food directly from the farm to the table.
As I mentioned last month, visiting other Rotary Clubs is always fun. Remember the Mission of Rotary is to provide service to others, promote integrity, and advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through its fellowship of business, professional and community leaders. You ARE advancing understanding, goodwill and peace.
Area G
The Rotary Clubs of Whatcom County have teamed up with Rotary District 5050 to feed local children during the COVID-19 crisis with a USD $10,500 donation. The five Clubs in Whatcom County – Bellingham, Bellingham Bay, Bellingham Sunrise, Mount Baker, and North Whatcom pledged a combined $5,500 with Rotary District 5050 matching with $5,000. The recipients of this donation were the Whatcom County Boys and Girls Club Healthy Meals Program and the Starfish Pack Program.
The Healthy Meals Program was inspired to fill the child hunger gap caused by the COVID-19 pandemic school closures and subsequent limited access to food during the day. Open to all kids in Whatcom County ages 3-18, the grant provided by Rotary will contribute an additional 2,000 food packages a week for ten weeks – greatly increasing the previous capacity of the program of 2,800 food packages a week. Food packages are distributed twice a week at sites located in Bellingham and the County.
The Starfish Pack Program is an ongoing program that was already receiving Rotary resources when the need increased due to the school closures. To curb child hunger over the weekend, packs of food are given to the student to tide them over until Monday. The Starfish Program works directly with local school counselors who work with the families to ensure that these meals are meeting a real need as intended. With the Rotary grant, 820 packs with six meals each will be given to children struggling with hunger, distributed by the individual schools.
Although each Club usually determines which causes and non-profits are the best fit for their individual missions, the Rotary Clubs of Whatcom County have teamed up for causes in the past that required a larger effort. The new Bellingham Food Bank facility and the creation of Boulevard Park are two such endeavors as is this current urgent need. (Photos include Boys & Girls Club staff and volunteers preparing and distributing meals.)

Area I
In early May, Area I AG Darrell Hooper and AG-Elect Becky Elde delivered much needed funds to four organizations in their community of Skagit County. Checks were delivered to Helping Hands Food Bank, Boys & Girls Club of Skagit County, Tri-Parish Food Bank, and Skagit Neighbors In Need. These organizations are on the front lines of meeting the needs of essential workers and food insecure families in their community.
Helping Hands Food Bank- WA State National Guard Member, Becky Elde, Rebecca Larsen, Darrell Hooper

Darrell and Becky represent the Area I Clubs - Burlington Mid-Day, Burlington, Mount Vernon, Sedro-Woolley, and Skagit. Each of the five Clubs put up USD $1,000 to reach the maximum matching $5,000 grant made available by District 5050 for addressing the impact of COVID-19 to reach a total of $10,000. The Presidents of these Clubs met several times with the two Assistant Governors to discuss the greatest need in their community and without a doubt the long lines at the food banks made this an easy decision. In addition, they learned of the unexpected cost the Boys & Girls Club had with the purchase of expensive and necessary Infrared Thermometers at their locations providing childcare for the children of essential workers.
Boys & Girls Club- Becky Elde, Ron McHenry, Chrsitina Trader, Darrell Hooper

Currently Helping Hands Food Bank is meeting the needs of over 11,000 individuals weekly. Because many of their regular volunteers are of an age and with health compromises that makes them high risk for COVID-19 and not able to help at this time, the task of filling boxes became so overwhelming the National Guard stepped in to fill boxes and distribute. Tri-Parish Food Bank has doubled in the families they see every Saturday from 250 to almost 500, and Skagit Neighbors in Need has had the same experience of increased demand. The resources for food has also changed along with the cost so these funds were much appreciated and gladly welcomed!
Darrell Hooper, Lilia Ortiz, Becky Elde

We may have to remain appropriately distant for now but staying connected with continued Rotary "DoGoodery" in our community is a priority! We remain People of Action in a changed world. Thank you District 5050 for making this possible!
Darrell Hooper, Steve Fox, Becky Elde

Haney/Meadow Ridge

President Adrienne Dale of Meadow Ridge and President Peter Tam of  Haney presented a combined CDN $11,345 donation (Haney $4,000 Ridge $7,345) to Friends in Need Food Bank to battle COVID-19. Receiving the funds is Nancy Nagy, a volunteer with the food bank.
RI President Maloney & PRIP Rassen
I had the opportunity in mid-May to attend a meeting of District 5790, hosted by the Rotary Club of Cross Timbers in which RI President Mark Maloney shared how Rotary is adapting during the current worldwide pandemic. He stressed, that we should reach out to those members that we haven't seen at our online meetings. President Maloney (above) was excited to share more about the Virtual International Convention (see related article) and when asked, he said that the pandemic will set back our PolioPlus program, but, ground team are ready to go once the okay is given. He also mentioned  an initiative called Rotary Connect which was rolled out in Chicago and Houston. We will hear more about this when he visits with our District on 6 June. District 5790 Governor Peter Scott shared with Mark how a Global Grant was completed in a record-setting twelve days from start to finish in the amount of USD $155,000 to help in COVID-19 relief efforts!
The next day, I attended a joint meeting of the Rotary Clubs of Orange Park and Flagler County, FL. PRIP Barry Rassin was the featured speaker of this meeting, He shared how the Bahamas are still dealing with the after affects of Hurricane Dorian-a Category 5 super storm of late August-early September that absolutely devastated the island nation. It is the worst natural disaster in the country's history. And, now the pandemic has affected the rebuilding of the Bahamas. The country is quarantined from the rest of the world and each island is quarantined from each other, so supply systems are diminished. Barry said that "when the US gets a cold, the Bahamas get pneumonia." The pandemic has been hard, to say the least, on Bahamians. Lockdowns are in affect each weekend. There have been 96 COVID cases with eleven deaths and there aren't any test kits in country.
Barry talked about a reverse osmosis water system that was installed in Freeport as part of a Rotary sponsored project about a decade ago to be used specifically in times of disasters. This has proved to be very beneficial. A much needed similar system is being installed in Abaco that will provide 10,000 gallons of water each day. In country, Rotary has arranged for $200,000 designated to help Rotarians rebuild their own homes.
All in-person RI Board and Board Committee Meetings have been cancelled. The funds as a result of the cost savings have been transferred to grant funding. $4.3 million out of the disaster fund has gone towards COVID relief. The telethon that was held in early May raised USD $507,000 in one hour. Barry also shared that efforts of the new relationship with Toastmasters should be announced soon. Lastly he told us that RI has started a task force on what RI should do differently in the future as a result of the pandemic.
It was a wonderful opportunity to hear both of these leaders of Rotary talk about how our organization has adapted and evolved. Another example of how Rotarians are People of Action.
Club Training Continuing Online
District 5050 is continuing online training session this month on Wednesdays.

Public Image, 3 June
Zoom Meeting Tips, 3 June
Online Fundraising, 10 June
Club Treasurers Orientation, 10 June

Watch for emails from the District with registration and login details.

For additional information email District Trainer Rod Thomson

Upcoming Club Events
Coquitlam, Coquitlam Sunrise & Port Moody - Grand Rotary Community Benefit, All the month of June!
La Conner - Through the Looking Glass, August 2020
Lake Stevens - Corks & Kegs, September 2020
From the Desk of the Editor
This is the June 2020 issue of the Peace Arch Journal. There are more ways our Clubs are finding to stay connected. We would love to hear how your Club is meeting. Send your articles and photos to
One of the meetings I attended last month was with the Rotary Club of Flagler County, FL. My predecessor, Bob Knight and his wife, Pat (top right), moved there a few years ago and joined that Club. At that meeting, they inducted a new member, County Judge Andrea Totten--welcome Andrea (lower right photo)--and had the Mayor of Palm Coast, Melissa Holland (middle row, second left), give an update on COVID 19. You know, they are facing the same things we are here in District 5050: health system challenges, food insecurity and helping children during this pandemic. I encourage you to read the District 5050 article above to find out how we are helping our communities.
Our District is hosting several exciting online gatherings this month! Starting with the weekly Coffee Corner hosted by Governor Brad on Tuesdays. On 6 June, Rotary President Mark Maloney will be our guest. That will be exciting! The District Training Committee is hosting Club Leader orientations on Wednesday evenings. You can see past trainings and Coffee Corners at the District YouTube channel. And, of course, you do not want to miss the International Convention. How many of you have been to an actual Rotary International Convention? After this month, many more of us will be able to say we have. You will receive emails from District Leadership about the online events. You can also visit our website for current information as well.
In the meantime continue to live by and exemplify the Rotary Four Way Test-
Is it the Truth?
Is it Fair to All Concerned?
Will it Build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
Will it Be Beneficial to all Concerned?
Thank you Governor Brad for leadership of our District especially during the later half of your term. You took this year's theme, Rotary Connects the World, to new meanings as we have connected District 5050 in new and exciting ways.
The Peace Arch Journal needs your help. If you are interested in writing occasional stories about your Club and neighboring Clubs, your communities and Club activities and events, please let me know.
Peace Arch Journal
Brad Whittaker
District Governor
This monthly publication is a service to District Club Officers and members. It is intended as a source of news and opinion from throughout the district.
The mission of the Peace Arch Journal is to promote communication, understanding, fellowship and fun beyond club meetings, in a manner complementary to shared efforts at placing Service Above Self.
Please send articles and news with or without pictures attached to emails. Photographs are always a plus! Note that the editor appreciates conservation of space in order to meet the sender’s needs and the editor’s time.
The deadline is the 23rd of the month.
Address any and all information to the Peace Arch Journal Editor.
James Monroe
Rotary Club of Lake Stevens, WA
District 5050’s web site:
Subscribe to Bulletin
Subscribe to our eBulletin and stay up to date on the latest news and events.
Upcoming Events
Club Runner Webinar
Jun 29, 2020
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
District Governor Installation and Awards
Jul 11, 2020
5:00 PM – 6:30 PM
View entire list
Leadership Team of Rotary International District 5050
Brad Whittaker
Rotary Club of Chilliwack
Cell: 604-819-6402
Carol Tichelman
Rotary Club of Chilliwack
Cell: 604-819-0363
Governor Nominee
Bev Harrington
Rotary Club of Burlington
Cell: 360-421-0601
Bonnie Willits
Rotary Club of North Whidbey Island Sunrise
Home: 360-320-2285
Carlye Gillespie
Bellingham Bay Rotary Club
Phone: 360-756-1010
Rotary Links
Rotary International
RI President Home
Rotary Global Rewards
Joining Rotary
Rotary History
Rotary Foundation
For New Members
RSS Feed

Clem Renouf, the RI president who inspired Rotary’s polio eradication efforts,


Rotary provides $20 million to help communities worldwide respond to COVID-19EVANSTON, Ill. (June 23, 2020) — Rotary members throughout the world are working safely and diligently to assess and provide for urgent


Snap judgmentsFrom Hong Kong to Hungary, Rotarians captured perfect moments in our annual photo contestThis year, we received more than 600 entries to our photo contest from


The ongoing evolution of Rotaract is redefining its place within Rotary.


With help from a Rotary Foundation global grant, a group of women in rural Costa Rica are using ecotourism to enrich their families' futures.