Farewell from President Rick
 
It’s almost June…the birds are singing…the flowers are blooming (finally)…and the Rotary year is coming to a close. That means I’ve just received the annual reminder Liz sends every RCM presi- dent that it’s time to pen my obligatory “farewell” message to the club.
 
I’ve always found farewell messages a bit awkward. It’s sort of like someone suggesting that you write your own obituary. After all, I don’t think I’m going anyplace anytime soon, except maybe to a seat that’s as close as possible to the dessert table.
 
I once had a friend in public relations who not only wrote his own obit (complete with the most flattering photo he could find…you know, the one from his high school yearbook), he put together the media distribution list for it as well, along with a list of people the media could call for a comment about his life. And he planned the post-burial party, too.
 
Naturally, he didn’t leave for his next life for another twenty years. But he was ready.
 
As a president, when you get that reminder from Liz, you’re required to do two things. The first is to face reality. You’re now officially a has been. Lame duck if you wish to be polite. No getting around it. The Rotary wheel has come full circle. Flickering Candles, here I come.
 
The second thing is to say something pithy like “Old presidents never die, they just go to a History and Current Events committee meeting and never return.”
 
But that yearly reminder from Liz also means good things ahead. A new Rotary year. New opportunities to make our community a better place. New opportunities to learn about issues of the day. The continuation of a great tradition of fellowship and service.   
 
I am grateful beyond words that you have allowed me to be your president this year. We’ve had some good times and we’ve accomplished a lot. Our year-long centennial celebration has been a blast. I have memories for a lifetime, not to mention some great material for my obit.
 
On June 25, Kathie Eilers will become the next president of our club. I hope you will give her the support and encouragement you have given me. If you do, she will be the most successful RCM president ever.
 
Thank you so much. And say hello on your way to the dessert table.