Today was a special one for Adrian Rotarians – District Governor Wayne, and his wife, Lisa made their official visit to our club marking his last visit within the district since taking office July 1. This was his final and 48th visit! ADG Mary really did a great job formally introducing Wayne using his name as an acronym describing his many great characteristics: W – warmhearted; A – adept; Y – youthful; N – natural leader; E – extraordinary. On hand aslo were PDG Bruce and DGE Sue Goldsen.
Wayne is a current member and past president of the Canton Rotary Club and was a member and past president of the Northville Club. He is a CPA and owns his own business. Wayne and his wife Lisa (who has accompanied her husband on 44 of the last 48 club visits) have two sons – Wayne IV who is married and a Rotarian and lives in Chicago and David who just returned from Guatemala having worked on a water project there and will graduate from the university in May. Wayne first met Lisa in college and they have been married 28 years.
He commended our club for our involvement in the community and thanked us for being so active. He recounted his experience last January when he and Lisa attended Governor-Elect training in San Diego where they met the then RI President-Elect Ravi Ravindran from Sri Lanka. Ravi reminded all DGs at that meeting that 2016 was a leap year and that all Rotarians had 366 days and a leap minute to promote Rotary’s ethics, pushing for organizational improvements, providing members opportunities to network and providing the opportunity for others to see the value in being members. “This is what our succession plan is and what will help drive Rotary into the future more successfully”, Wayne said. Wayne said that Ravi challenges all Rotarians to “Be a gift to the world” and he (Wayne) is tagging on with his motto of “GO DO GOOD”.
Wayne said that he noticed that our club has been very supportive of the RI Foundation; that “it is our foundation” since every dollar we give comes back to us in multiple ways, generally in the form of grants which goes back to the international community. In saying that, DG Wayne presented Mary Murray with her Paul Harris pin with a 5th sapphire for her continued generosity! He followed that with a story about his own experience with a water project in El Salvador estimated to cost $37,000 using solar power. He said that they actually completed that project for $8,5000 cash thanks to Rotarian contributions in the form of matching dollars to this and other international projects. Wayne then gave everyone a postcard showing an aerial view of Michigan and Canada’s Essex County and Ontario taken from the International Space Station and asked everyone to write them a message describing how we were going to be a gift to the world this year.
DG Wayne and wife Lisa with Rod and Mary and Anthony & Erik from AC RotaractHe gave everyone a district bookmark listing important dates: October 15 – One Rotary Summit at Schoolcraft College in Livonia. All are invited; October 24 – World Polio Day when a documentary film, “A Shot Heard Round the World”, will be screened at the Trenton Theater showing the history of the development of the Polio vaccine. A $5 donation will be accepted. Wayne then gave details of his District Conference June 23-26, 2016 at the Radisson Suites in Kalamazoo. See highlights on the District’s website). It will be a time to (1) celebrate our clubs’ accomplishments (2) have fun and fellowship together (3) participate in a service project together and (4) learn and be inspired by the speakers. He announced that a stipend from the District will be offered first time attendees of $150. (Our club will also provide up to $150 as well). A keynote speaker at the conference, he said, would be an internationally-known storyteller and Director of the International Storytelling Center affiliated with the Smithsonian Institute. He is also a Rotary Peace Scholar and will be running a workshop at the conference. (Shown in the photo to the left is: President Rod, Lisa Titus, DG Wayne, Anthony and Erik from Adrian College's new Rotaract Club and ADG Mary).
Wayne concluded his presentation with a moving story about the time he was traveling globally for the company he worked for and noticed “global companies like Enron and WorldCom collapsing around the world” at the time. At the same time his Father-in-Law had passed away. This all made him reflect on “What am I doing with my life?”, “Who was I serving?” After two years of praying and meditating, he said, he made the decision to leave corporate America and go into business for himself specifically to help families to be good stewards of their finances. And then “Rotary came into my life!” when his friend, Lori Mars, director of the Northville Chamber of Commerce, made a visit to welcome him to the business community. A few weeks later she invited him to lunch at the Northville Rotary Club yet it was a few more years before he “fully understood the fullness and internationality of Rotary”, he said.  
When Wayne started his business, another friend of his asked him to join a board for an organization that worked with poor people in El Salvador which he did. He then met another person through that association, Sr. Peggy O’Neil, from New Jersey who had visited El Salvador many times over the last 30 years. Wayne said it never occurred to him to ever tell her he was a Rotarian. But one day while he and Sister Peggy were in the country chatting she told him that she had just participated in the dedication of a Rotary Water project sponsored by a group of Indiana Rotarians just a mile from where they were sitting! It was at the time Wayne told her he was a Rotarian and she told him “When I was a Rotarian, good things happen”. THAT was THE moment, Wayne said, he truly became a Rotarian!! Wayne concluded by encouraging each one of us to take time and invite a prospect to a meeting just like Lori did with me. “Go Do Good Adrian Rotarians.”
Following his presentation, ADG Mary and President Rod presented DG Wayne with a bottle of champagne, an assortment of beer, and copies of Frank & Shirley Dick's book and PDG Bill Chase's book.