Photo by Diane Finch-Oerter
Mike Honerman and Dian Edwards
Rotarians are close to finally eliminating polio world wide, and the North Platte Rotary club is a prime donor in Nebraska.
A crippling and potentially fatal infectious disease, polio still strikes children mainly under the age of five in countries in Asia, Africa, and the eastern Mediterranean region.
After 25 years of work, Rotary and its partners are on the brink of eradicating the tenacious disease, but a strong push is needed to root it out once and for all, the organization says on its website.
Rotary District Governor Dian Edwards of O’Neill trumpeted the Rotary theme -- Peace Through Service -- Wednesday to the North Platte Noon Rotary club.
Edwards is making official visits to each of the 35 rotary clubs in the district, 5630. She was welcomed to the noon club by newly installed North Platte president Mike Honerman.
“In Rotary our motto is ‘Service Above,’” Edwards said. “I think that’s what our clubs are doing. Helping others before themselves. That motto and our new theme work together. We can spread peace, one person at a time.”
She encouraged the North Platte club to continue its many service projects and thanked them for generous donations to the PolioPlus campaign. From Jan, 1999-Feb. 2012, the North Platte club contributed $60,857. North Platte Noon Rotary is the largest club in District 5630, with 115 members.
Edwards praised the continued efforts to help those in need, as well as contributions to the Rotary Foundation and its polio eradication program.
“We are ‘this close’ to eliminating polio,” she said. “It has decreased in the past year, but it is essential that we continue our efforts and finish the job.”
During the meeting, Honerman introduced the new 2012-2013 officers and presented a plaque to out-going president Bob Mayber.
New executive officers are: President-Elect Sonja Voycheske; Secretary Judy Pederson; Treasurer Lori Swanson and Past President Bob Mayber.
Edwards visited the North Platte Sunrise Rotary Thursday morning, where she was welcomed by club president Linda Rousey. Rousey said members were impressed by Edwards’ remarks on world projects and the peace initiatives of Rotary International President Sakuji Tanaka of Japan.