As one of the oldest clubs in the Rotary organization, the Rotary Club of Joliet is embarking on a year-long celebration to mark the 100th anniversary of the club’s founding. Amidst a festively decorated ballroom, Club President Tim Brophy officially kicked off the celebration of “Service Above Self”, the motto of Rotary International, at the July 17 meeting.

Our club was the first Rotary club in a community of less than 70,000, Brophy said. “Thousands of members have passed through our club in the last 100 years and we are proud of our rich history and the impact our club has had on Joliet and the world.

The Centennial committee is led by co-chairs Mike Rittof and Ed Dollinger and the following subcommittees and chairs: History and Video - George Buck and Greg Peyla, Museum Exhibit - Tony Contos and Larry Johnson, Dinner Gala - Rick Gregg and Dan Vera, Public Relations: Debbie Condotti and Lisa Morel Las, Centennial Projects/Special Events: Howard Hamilton and Ken Mihelich, Sponsorship/Fundraising: Mary Jaworski and Russ Slinkard.
Numerous events are planned through the year-long celebration culminating with a celebration dinner slated for August 3, 2013 at the Holiday Inn in Joliet. “We will be highlighting many special projects and events during our centennial celebration,” Rittof said. “I urge all members to get involved with as many activities as possible to ensure a successful celebration.”

Beginning in August, submissions will be accepted for consideration as recipients of proceeds from the Sergeant at Arms funding. In September, the Rotary Club of Joliet will host its annual raffle drive which is a primary fund raiser for the club.

Other events include the annual food and coat drives to be held in November and December, respectively. Plans also include billboards and banners around the Joliet area to include the community in the club’s celebration.

"Rotary has touched many people’s lives in this area, both professionally and personally,” said Brophy. “I am proud of our club’s success and longevity and this year will be an opportunity to let the community know, we are proud to be Rotarians.”