Bristol Rotary, Inc., Post Office Box 469, Bristol, RI 02809

Welcome to Bristol Rotary!

Rotary is a global community of more than 1.2 million men and women dedicated to building a better world.  Founded in 1929, the Rotary Club of Bristol is a fellowship and service organization of over 50 men and women dedicated to the Rotary motto of Service Above Self.  Our club has made many large and small contributions to the welfare of this community and to communities throughout the world. Through the Rotary community, you can exchange ideas and build lifelong friendships with like-minded people. If you have a sincere interest in making a positive contribution to your community, we’re interested in meeting you. Email our President or Secretary to learn how you can become a Bristol Rotarian.

We meet the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of each month at 12:15 P.M. at
The DeWolf Tavern Restaurant
259 Thames Street
Bristol, RI 02809
 
 

 
Stories
Joyce Watts, the Director and inspiration for Global Outreach, spoke about their broad services for people in need. Global outreach and its partners are dedicated to putting this mission into action by providing a full range of charitable, human service, educational, religious and community development activities. 
 
David Harrington, curator of Linden Place, spoke at our Rotary lunch meeting of the evolution of Linden Place from being the home of prominant Bristolians to a center for charitable and artistic events in Bristol. The history of Bristol is embodied in the beautiful house which was the home of DeWolf's, Colt's and Ethel Barrymore, as well as the families and historical activities they represented.
Ken and Mary Watkinson updated us on the situation in Haiti and specifically on the children's school in La Mothe, with over 200 students, that they have been selflessly helping with medicines, clothing and financial support. Bristol Rotary has held several fundraisers in the past to help this cause as well. It is called Haiti's Child.  In short, the situation in Haiti continues to be very dangerous with lawless gangs controlling the country and stealing or attacking any source of money or goods. The Watkinson's have suitcases full of medicines that have not been sent to Haiti for fear that they would be stolen. However, the support continues to be collected here while we continue to find new ways to get it to Haiti. 
 
Maria Cesario joined Bristol Rotary and is being pinned by President Liz and her sponsor Mary Jo Fidalgo-Tavares. Maria recently retired from Textron where she was Senior Tax Accountant. She has now formed her own tax consulting company, called World Consultancy Services. Maria also continues to serve on the Bristol Fourth of July Committee as Correspondent Secretary. Welcome to Bristol Rotary, Maria.
 
Our Speaker for our Bristol Rotary lunch on March 16 was Joanne Quinn, Executive Director of The Autism Project, which serves Rhode Island with support services for families with children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and other developmental disabilities. They also train teachers and professionals on methods and practices. In 2015 and 2016, Bristol Rotary teamed up with The Autism Project to fund and create The Autism Project - East Bay Support Center, to bring these services to the under-supported East Bay of Rhode Island. With participation from all the towns in Bristol County, the joint project raised the highest level of donations in Bristol Rotary's history. The Center was opened in September 2015. 
 
 Zach Rivers, is owner of Judge Roy Bean and he is the President of the Bristol Merchants Association (BMA). He explained that "BMA is an association of Bristol Merchants and organizations who enhance the business environment for the profitability of our members through mutual cooperation by common marketing advocacy, event hosting and sharing of best business practices." In addition, there was discussion of how BMA could help Bristol Rotary help the Community through collaboration on charitable projects.
 
Margueritte Heenehan, volunteer administrator for many churches and support groups in the community, is being inducted into Bristol Rotary. Here she is being pinned by her sponsor Marilyn Mason, with President Liz Habecker in support.
 
Chuck MacDonough, the new General Chairman of Bristol's historic 4th of July Celebration, spoke to our Rotary lunch at the also historic DeWolf Tavern. Chuck reviewed the cost and complexities involved in putting on the Celebration. He also summarized  the many fundraising activities to fund the over  $400,000 cost of the event. Become a Sponsor at "fourthofjulybristolri.com".
 
At our last Bristol Rotary meeting of the year, we celebrated not only the Christmas to come but three fundraising projects we ran to help the community. First, our Local Food for Local Friends program, that over 5 months, distributed 525 meals from local restaurants to grateful seniors from the Senior Center and Franklin Court Independent Living. Second, our Bingo fundraiser at St. Elizabeth's Auditorium that hosted over 160 people who helped raise funds for financial grants (scholarships) for some of our High School graduating Seniors. Lastly, in early December, we distributed Food Gift Certificates for $70 each from Seabra Market to Benjamin Church Senior Center, the Ladies Auxiliary of the Bristol Fire Department, and Franklin Court Independent Living.  These gifts will allow the recipients to buy the food they would prefer for Christmas. What ever may be left over from these projects will go to the food pantries in our area.  Considering the kind of year we've had, we are grateful to have accomplished these projects before Christmas.  If you'll notice on the right of the picture, not to be left out, everyone at the lunch brought gifts that we shared with each other.
 
 
President Liz, at our December 1 meeting, launched Bristol Rotary's annual Christmas Food Gift Program by giving envelopes each containing gift certificates from Seabra Market worth $70. They will be distributed to the needy in our community by the Benjamin Church Senior Center, the Ladies Auxiliary of the Bristol Fire Dept. and Franklin Court Independent Living. Shown in the first picture are Maria Ursini and Donna Wilson from the Senior Center, and in the second picture, Jennifer Mancieri from the Ladies Auxiliary. All donations to purchase the certificates were made by the members of the Bristol Rotary Club. 
 
 
Last night, Bristol Rotary held a Bingo Night, for almost 200 people, to raise money for educational grants for our graduating High School students. The evening was successful in providing a fun night for all who came and in raising funds to support our students. Barbara Palumbo masterfully ran the games while the rest of the Rotary team made sure everyone else was having fun - providing food, drink and other games of chance. We look forward to next year! 
 
Our speaker this week was Jennifer Mancieri, President of the Ladies Auxiliary of the Bristol Volunteer Fire Dept. This group provides invaluable service to the victims of a fire disaster and to the firemen fighting it. Most significant is the support of the families who have survived such a disaster - by feeding and clothing them and helping to relocate them. In addition, they help the victims with the recovery process; as well as filling out insurance forms to initiate the recovery. They are a 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Corporation and gratefully accept donations. 
 
 
Bristol Rotary will host a bingo night on November 17, 2021 to raise money for educational Grants to be given to graduating local students. Come help us help them - and enjoy yourselves too! On-line, buy tickets at "bristoyrotaryclub.com/bingo"
 
 
Glen Donavan a retired RN and Timmy Phongsamphanh a medical student and EMT (originally from Laos), spoke at the Rotary lunch about their involvement in helping a school in Haiti.  The school called "The Land" is for 200 students in the city of La Mothe.  They spoke and showed a movie of the team at the school where they had provided medical support, food, clothing and financial assistance to help them have a more survivable existence. The team also includes two Bristol Rotarians, Mary and Ken Watkinson. Glen also covered the tragedy that Haiti has become over the past few months. 
 
The new District Governor, William (Billy) Roberts, came to visit Bristol Rotary and praised our accomplishments, our management and our processes.  Billy is Governor of District 7950 which encompasses 65 Rotary Clubs throughout Southeast Massachusetts, Cape Cod, the islands and the State of Rhode Island.  In total the District and it's Clubs have over 2,000 women and men working for their local communities with the guiding principle - "Service above Self."
 
The Emergency Dialer Program (EDP) is a free service provided by the Town of Bristol for people who want the security of having a button to push to get Emergency Services to their home. It is run by Ed Carusi, Director of Social Services and Welfare and supported by outside donations primarily from Bristol Rotary. The device is installed, typically in the home of an aging or physically impaired person who would like to remain independent knowing that help can be on the way as soon as the button (which can be worn like a necklace) is pushed. EDP is installed and maintained regardless of the financial means of the client - free of charge. The battery backed up device is installed on a land line to insure that it works in a power failure. Many lives have been saved using EDP. Call Ed (401) 253-4831) to order one for you or a loved one, or to find out more. 
 
The Membership, Fellowship and Communications Committee is one of the two committees established at the beginning of President Liz's term. The other one being the Fundraising and Budget Committee. Great plans being generated by both.
Maria Cesario and Bruce Cox were the guest speakers.  Maria, as a new member of Bristol Rotary, gave us her background since coming to the US in 1967 from the Azores, her distinguished business career, and her involvement in the 4th of July Committee's activities. Bruce Cox, a 32 year member of Bristol Rotary, took us through his transition, from joining a local Rotary Club to becoming a Rotarian in the broadest sense, and what it has meant for his personal growth. 
 
President Liz Habecker thanks our speaker Michele Martin, Chairperson of the Bristol 4th of July Celebration, who took us through the work and effort it takes to put on this historic parade and Celebration.
 
On July 21, our lunch meeting at the DeWolf Tavern drew 29 members out from the pandemic haze. It was great to see so many old friends back. Thanks to President Liz for a very successful meeting. Also thanks to Chef Sai for the set-up. It was also great to see ex-President Deb Metaxas.
 
Our first open meeting of Bristol Rotary since the Pandemic. Next time, we'll be back to our old spot upstairs at DeWolfs. President Liz is  presiding at the end of the table. Please notice our Joan Roth up front. Good to see her.
 
On June 23 an Installation lunch greeted our new President Elizabeth Habecker for the 2021/2022 year. And we thanked Paul LaFleur for his accomplishments during the very difficult Pandemic year.
 
 
 

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Club Officers & Directors
President
Secretary
Treasurer
Vice President
Vice President - BRCF Treasurer
Immediate Past President - LOA
Director
Director
Director
Director
Director
BRCF (501(c)(3)) Officers and Directors
President & Chairman
Bruce H. Cox
 
Vice-President & Director
Mary Jo Fidalgo-Tavares
 
Treasurer & Director
Jacques de Labry
 
Secretary & Director
Scott Pickering
 
Director         
Paul LaFleur 
 
Director
Elizabeth Habecker (Pres. 2021-2022)
 
Director
Michelle Hughes
 
 
 
 
 
Board Meeting Reports - Club and BRCF