Posted by Bruce Van Cleve

On Wednesday, November 13, 2013, the Rotary Club of Erie celebrated its 100th anniversary of service to the Erie community and beyond.

Here is then president, Joe Herbert's, remarks at the Celebration Gala:

"I’d like to put it in perspective what it means to be a successful organization for 100 years in the United States.

"Think about this.  The Rotary Club of Erie has been through multiple recessions, six wars including both world wars, the Great Depression, the Industrial Revolution, a U.S. technology boom, the DOT com bust, the creation of the internet and social media and the recent U.S housing/wall street crisis.

"According to Standard & Poor's, the following is the “A” list of American organizations that have lasted for 100 years or more:


"The New York Times, General Electric, IBM, Black & Decker, Hershey’s, Kellogg’s, Ford Motor, UPS, Johnson & Johnson, Walgreens, Target, Radio Shack, Coca Cola, Pepsi…

"And now, The Rotary Club of what is the Rotary Club and what do we do?  

"Rotary International is 109 years old and its mission is to provide service to others, promote integrity, and advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through its fellowship of business, professional, and community leaders. 

"Rotarians are your neighbors, your community leaders and some of the world’s greatest history-makers including

·         Warren G. Harding, U.S. president

·         Dr. Charles H. Mayo, co-founder of Mayo Clinic

·         Guglielmo Marconi, Italian inventor of the wireless radio and Nobel laureate

·         Admiral Richard E. Byrd, American explorer

·         Dianne Feinstein, U.S. senator

·         Richard Lugar, U.S. senator

·         Frank Borman, American astronaut

·         James Cash Penney, founder of JC Penney Co.

·         Carlos Romulo, UN General Assembly president

"As stated on the Rotary website, our differing occupations, cultures, and countries give us a unique perspective. Our shared passion for service helps us accomplish the remarkable. Our multidisciplinary perspective helps us see challenges in unique ways and we apply leadership and expertise to social issues—and find unique solutions.

"We make a difference at home and around the world: Our members can be found in your community and across the globe. Rotarians work tirelessly with their clubs to solve some of our communities' toughest challenges.

"The Rotary Club of Erie is a club of business and organizational leaders providing help to those in need not only in Erie but internationally.  It is the 91st club in Rotary history, that now numbers more than 34,000 clubs in 200 countries.  There are 1.2 million Rotarians worldwide who provide humanitarian service, encourage high ethical standards in all vocations, and help build goodwill and peace in the world. 

"Some of the projects of the Rotary Club of Erie include the Ethics Symposium for High School Juniors, scholarships for public school seniors to attend college, supporting the Interact Club at Villa Maria Academy, supporting the Rotaract Club at Mercyhurst University, sponsoring the Rotary Pavilion at the Erie Zoo and our internationally recognized Literacy Project in Haiti.

"As the president of the Rotary Club of Erie, I wish to extend my gratitude to those great Rotarians who came before us. They have done an outstanding job of paving the way for our current and future success. If you’d like more information about becoming a Rotarian and would like to help us write our history for the next 100 years, please visit our website at

"Happy 100th birthday, Rotary Club of Erie."