The club places great importance on fellowship among its members, as it enhances the ability of the club to provide service.



The Rotary Club of Chicago sponsored the 38th Rotary Club in the country in Columbus in 1912. The Columbus Club remained the only Rotary Club in the area until 1959, when it sponsored the Westerville Club and relinquished part of their territory to it. By the end of the 1960s the Columbus Club had also sponsored the Whitehall-Bexley and Upper Arlington Clubs.

In late 1973 John (Jack) Prior wanted to become a member of the Upper Arlington Club, but the “Life Insurance” classification there was filled. Jack’s father, who was a member of the Columbus Club, introduced Jack to Edgar “Barney” Barnett, past president (1951-52) of the Columbus Club, and Past District Governor (1969-70) of our Rotary District. Barney had been instrumental in launching the Whitehall, Bexley and Upper Arlington Clubs, and he raised the possibility with Jack of starting a new club in the Dublin-Worthington area. Barney’s good friend and fellow Rotarian, Dr. Minor Seymour, persuaded his partner, Dr. Louis Goorey, to join the discussions. Barney, Jack and Lou met throughout the winter of 1974. By May of that year they were having organizational meetings with a larger group, including Donald Moulton, Louis Csillag, George Norris and Fred Stecker. Like Barney Barnett, Fred Sleeker was a Past President (1959-60) of the Columbus Club, and Past District Governor (1962-63) of our Rotary District.

Throughout the summer of 1974, the club held organizational meetings, and in August submitted the charter application to Rotary International, bearing the names of 35 charter members. On September 9, 1974, the club’s leaders were advised by telegram that their provisional status had ended, and that they were now a full-fledged Rotary Club. The official charter ceremony was held October 16, 1974. Jack Prior was named the club’s first president. Jack had to resign his position the following month to accept a new position in San Diego. For the remainder of our club’s first Rotary year through June 1975, Lou Goorey served as president. Frank Dunbar was vice president, and Jerry Tanner was secretary.

From its beginning, the club’s focus has been on youth and their families with special emphasis on education and vocational awareness. Activities have ranged from career awareness programs and college scholarships to efforts to combat teenage drug abuse, park projects, painted maps of the United States on school playgrounds and services to homeless and needy families.

Our club has also distinguished itself by its sense of humor. Self-importance and humbuggery are simply not permitted. The club’s cadre of Sergeants-at-Arms has enforced this ideal through the years. The club places great importance on fellowship among its members, as it enhances the ability of the club to provide service. To encourage fellowship, the club subsidizes attendance at club social events through the fund-raising efforts of the weekly raffle and fines by the Sergeants.

This 1974 photograph shows 30 of the 35 charter members of the club. Pictured (left to right) are: Top row — Allan Buller, Raymond Grieselhuber, Jack Eggspuehler, Ronald Jones, Richard Ollila, Bruce Graham, Donald Hanson, John McCombe, Thomas Conway, Jr., S. Louis Berta; Middle row — Michael J. (Jerry) Ketchum, James Ingram, John Johnson, Edward Farber, George Banning, Robert Bradstreet, Robert Calentine, Robert Hinshaw, Theodore Harder, Louis Csillag; Bottom row — William Keaney, Donald Moulton, Jerry Tanner, Frank Dunbar III, John Prior, Jr., Louis Goorey, Samuel Milliron, James Brimeyer [kneeling] Bill Myers, Charles R. (Dick) Coate. Not pictured are: George Smith, Dana Stewart, Delbert Lothes, John Jacob and Roger Baughman.


On February 23, 1905, a Chicago lawyer called three friends to a meeting. He wanted to begin a club that would get together periodically for camaraderie and to enlarge their circle of business and professional acquaintances. The four businessmen didn’t decide then and there to call themselves a Rotary club, but their get-together was, in fact, the first meeting of the world’s first Rotary club. As they continued to meet, adding others to the group, they rotated their meetings among the members’ places of business, hence the name. Soon after the club name was agreed upon – the Rotary Club of Chicago — one of the new members suggested a wagon wheel design as the club emblem. By the end of 1905 the club had 30 members.

The second Rotary club was formed in 1908 in San Francisco, and the third in Oakland. Others followed in Seattle, Los Angeles and New York City. Rotary became international in 1912 with the club in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. By 1921 the organization was represented on every continent, and the name Rotary International (RI) was adopted in 1922.

The original office where the Rotary founders met in Chicago has been preserved. It is located on the 16th floor of the Rl World Headquarters in Evanston, Illinois.

Mottos and the Rotary Emblem

Rotarians embrace the ideal of service as evidenced by Rotary’s principal motto, “Service Above Self,” adopted in 1989, and its other official precept, “He Profits Most Who Serves Best.”

Rotary’s first emblem was a simple wagon wheel in motion with dust representing civilization and movement. It was designed in 1905 by Montague Bear of the Chicago Club, an engraver. Many Rotary clubs of the time adopted the wheel in one form or another. The gear teeth around the perimeter represent work to be done. The six spokes represent the inner direction and path of our vocational service. In 1922 authority was given to create and preserve an official emblem, and the following year the present gear wheel with 24 cogs and six spokes was adopted. A keyway was added to signify that the wheel was a “worker and not an idler.” At the Rl Convention in 1929 royal blue and gold were chosen as the official colors.

Our Ongoing Commitment

Today Rotary is a global network of 1.2 million neighbors, friends, leaders and problem-solvers who see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change – across the globe, in our communities and in ourselves.


Jim Farmer, President
Joe Patchen, President-Elect
Emily Biondo, President-Nominee
Dave Hansen
, Secretary
Jerry Katz, Treasurer
Teresa Russell, Past President

Board Members
Jim Allen
Lisa Federico
Christie Bruffy
Charlie Vestey
Tim Moats
Darnell Perkins
Allan Woo
Steve Payerle


Past President Mike Moulton recounts how a visit to our twin club in the Dominican Republic reinforced for him the importance of Rotarian service efforts in positively impacting the lives of others locally and around the world.

“One day we attended a service project of theirs, which was teaching people to read and write. We met an elderly woman who was in the class. She was well into her 60s and was just learning to read. She was being helped by her granddaughter.

The very next day we ran into this woman while visiting the medical clinic that we helped them start. The woman recognized us and invited us to her home for a meal, which we politely declined. She was so thankful for our help and being there that she was willing to give us most likely a weeks worth of her food to show her gratitude.

I will never forget that moment and how it made me feel to be a part of something so meaningful to help others and to see what kind of impact it had on their lives.”




1974  Jack Pryor
1974-75  Lou Goorey
1975-76  Frank Dunbar*
1976-77  Don Moulton*
1977-78  George Banning
1978-79  Tom Conway
1979-80  Lou Berta
1980-81  Jack Eggspuehler*
1981-82  Dutch Decker*
1982-83  Ron Jones
1983-84  Dan Maher
1984-85  Courtney Chapman
1985-86  Chuck Housley
1986-87  Bob Hanson
1987-88  Cliff Wilcox
1988-89  Roger Johnson
1989-90  John Bader
1990-91  Dale Outz
1991-92  Bob Blank
1992-93  Dave King
1993-94  Ron Hopper
1994-95  Tom Reis
1995-96  Mark Eisenman*
1996-97  Pete Barnhart
1997-98  Ken Newstrom
1998-99  Del Lothes*
1999-00  Steve Potter
2000-01  George Norris
2001-02  Jim Farmer
2002-03  Judy Bryant*
2003-04  Dave Kittredge
2004-05  Dick Hunter*
2005-06  Dave Jordan
2006-07  Lou Briggs*
2007-08  Gary Williams
2008-09  Roe Mauro
2009-10  Darnell Perkins
2010-11  Mike Moulton
2011-12  BJ Stone*
2012-13  BJ Stone* and Rich
2013-14  Rich Goldberg
2014-15  Doug Southgate
2015-16  Al Woo
2016-17  Connie Hendren
2017-18  Tim Shear
2018-19  Alan Grossman
2019-20  John Butterfield
2020-21  Jim Miller
2021-22 Steve Payerle
2022-23 Steve Payerle
2023-24 Teresa Russell

* Deceased