I have been awed at the resilience of our Rotarians – in turning around in the face of adversity.  Faced with the prospect of not being able to meet in-person, most Clubs quickly pivoted to online meetings.  The District facilitated this process by making available the District’s Zoom account for Clubs to use.  In true Rotary spirit, we did not go into hiding from the virus, but came out to stand beside our communities. We were able to get a $25,000 Emergency Grant from The Rotary Foundation - we topped it off with additional funds from the District, making available $56,500 for 24 Club COVID-19 projects.  But the Clubs went way beyond that and implemented 47 projects totaling $190,000 – all in the span of less than 3 months – You are truly “People of Action”, 
This is the last Newsletter of the year – and what an eventful year it has been.  We began with the traditional and usual activities.  Bina and I visited all 44 Clubs by early January.  And then our world turned upside down.  We were thrown into a completely unfamiliar world.  Each one of us struggled to make sense of where we are.  Along the way, many of us lost friends and loved ones.  Our Rotary family lost Club Presidents, Past Presidents, and long-time Rotarians.  Our grief was accentuated by our inability to attend their funerals.  May their souls rest in peace.
 
I have been awed at the resilience of our Rotarians – in turning around in the face of adversity.  Faced with the prospect of not being able to meet in-person, most Clubs quickly pivoted to online meetings.  The District facilitated this process by making available the District’s Zoom account for Clubs to use.  In true Rotary spirit, we did not go into hiding from the virus, but came out to stand beside our communities. We were able to get a $25,000 Emergency Grant from The Rotary Foundation - we topped it off with additional funds from the District, making available $56,500 for 24 Club COVID-19 projects.  But the Clubs went way beyond that and implemented 47 projects totaling $190,000 – all in the span of less than 3 months – You are truly “People of Action”, 
 
We had our first Virtual District Assembly on 30 May, and from most accounts, it was a success.  We had nearly 112 registrations.  While we did have a little technical hiccup, in the end, it all worked out.  I presented the State of the District Report.  Rather than repeat it, here is a link to the recording.  The Clubs adopted the 2018-19 Audited Financial Report.
 
Along with our District Conference, the pandemic also caused the cancellation of the Rotary Convention.  But the Convention will go on – virtually – with many more interesting and timely breakout sessions.  Imagine attending a Rotary Convention, visiting the House of Friendship, interacting with attendees all for free – no travel, no hotel, and no cost at all.  Register now for the Convention at riconvention.org
 
Membership: We have done well in our retention rate of 93%.  Rotary has increased membership worldwide by 27,500 this year.  Our Zone 32 increased by 56 members – Our District’s contribution to that was 34 members. Let’s hope we can keep this positive trend going over the July 1 changeover. Make sure your membership information is up to date on the District data base.  We have a new Satellite Club Application pending approval, which will add 8 more members to our total.
 
District Grants:  We were able to provide a little over $36,000 for 16 approved District Grants.  This year, The Rotary Foundation approved 10 Global Grants in which D7230 is participating, with a total funding from all sources of $1,675,000.
 
Foundation: We have 68 new and renewing Paul Harris Fellows, but while we exceeded our goal, our total giving to the Foundation this year is the lowest in 5 years. There is still time until June 30, for members in the 10 non-giving Clubs - and indeed all members - to pull us out of that standing.  And there is added inventive now with the District Matching Points Challenge
 
Youth: We can rightly be proud of our strong links with Rotaract. 4 new Rotaract Clubs were chartered doubling the number of Rotaract Clubs in the District. More and more Rotaractors are getting involved with the Clubs in the District.
 
Communication: We have renewed and revamped our District website and our Facebook page. 18 clubs have new branded Facebook pages and most Clubs are using the ClubRunner platform.  Happily, 8 Clubs so far are qualified for the Presidential Citation.
 
Jonathan Lockwood Huie said, “Celebrate endings - for they precede new beginnings.”  At this time of great challenges for our members, our organization, our families and our communities, I can assure you, that come July, you will be in good hands as I hand the baton to DGE Mary Shackleton and her team.  There will be new Teams at all levels in Rotary – a new President of RI, new Directors, a new District Team and new Club Officers.  While leadership may change, it is you Rotarians who will continue to carry out the exemplary work in your communities. 
 
There are so many people to thank for making this year so memorable. I am indebted to the Governor Team, many of our Past District Governors and to Director Jeffry Cadorette for all their help and guidance. I have said many times that vibrant clubs depend on good leadership and I want to thank this year’s World-Class Presidents and my able band of Assistant Governors for all you did. Your leadership, guidance, empathy, knowledge, and experience came to the fore and our District is better for it. Thanks, and praise also to those who chair our District committees. It has been a privilege to serve with you. What a gift it has been to watch you grow into and carry out your roles and responsibilities!
 
Perhaps now it is clearer to see why I have difficulty defining the one highlight of this year. It has been a wonderful experience and a privilege to serve the Rotarians of District 7230. Bina and I sincerely thank you all for your dedication and your support, but more so, thank you for your friendship.  Be assured, should any of you ever call on us for any help, you bet we will be there.
 
Warm wishes,
 
DG Mahbub