THE Rotary Club of Katherine has recently bestowed one of its highest honours on three Katherinites, in the wake of significant contributions by worthy community members.
“It is not an honour given out lightly,” outgoing Katherine Rotary President Heather Earle said, when presenting the driving forces behind the town’s annual 000 Ball, with Paul Harris Fellowships.
Christine Sutherland and Donna Bryant were surprised at a presentation for the allocation of 000 Ball funds which took place at the Rotary Fun Park on Thursday, October 25, when Ms Earle announced that they were to become Paul Harris Fellows in recognition of their charitable efforts in the Katherine community.
“I am very shocked by this, and feel extremely honoured,” Ms Sutherland said, who along with Ms Bryant, received a pin, medallion and certificate.
Paul Harris founded the Rotary movement in 1905, and in 1957, the Rotary Foundation launched the Paul Harris Fellowship in memory of the founder.
It can be awarded to Rotarians and non-Rotarians alike, and recognises it recipients as advocates of world peace and understanding.
“This club does not give them away lightly, which is evident in the existing Paul Harris Fellows we have in Katherine – Bob and Edith Mackie, Don and Shirley Smith, Jim Bettossi, Les Cox, Merle Wright, John Leo and Dr Jim Scattini,” Ms Earle said.
Ms Sutherland said she was thrilled to be in such good company.
“I’m very surprised to be in association with these others who have done so much for the Katherine community, it is a big honour.”
Ms Bryant said the gesture had been very moving.
“It’s just something we didn’t expect, so it is a real bonus,” she said.
And, just the following Monday on October 29, Ms Earle herself was presented with a Paul Harris Fellowship at her final Rotary meeting in Katherine, as she prepared to step down from the Presidency and relocate to
“It is a lovely achievement for me, but you don’t do this for accolades,” Ms Earle said.
While her involvement in Rotary is relatively new, beginning when she came to Katherine in January 2010, Ms Earle said it has given her a lot.
“And presenting Christine and Donna with their Fellowships was a privilege, they really have done so much for Rotary’s profile and good works through the 000 Ball.”