President John A. Smith

July 1994 John A. Smith (a real person, and not the man whose name you have seen on many hotel and motel registers) assumed our club’s presidency.  After years of planning, the club received a new curtain for the stage at Harrah’s.  The curtain displays a large Rotary Wheel and over 500 club banners from around the world.  Special thanks were given to Gene Charles and Mike Meyer for their efforts in securing a majority of these club banners.  During this year, John changed the distribution of the weekly drawing, designating 50% to the weekly winner, with the other half going to The Rotary Foundation in the winner’s name.  Gene Charles effectively straightened out the club’s records of contributions to The Rotary Foundation and through use of existing, unallocated club funds; a number of Paul Harris Fellowships were awarded.

Community Service received special attention during 1994-1995 through the donation of $7,500 to Habitat for Humanity.  This cash contribution along with many hours of donated labor by members helped provide a deserving family with their own home.  Under the direction of Dr. Bill Stephan and Jim Tucker, nearly 100 Las Vegas elementary school children received a new pair of shoes and three pairs of socks through the club’s newly established “Happy Feet” program.

The club’s first Interact Club was established at the Advanced Technologies Academy.  Under Sharon McNair’s leadership, the club was active in their own meetings, and they attended several of our club meetings.  The Interact Club members worked with our members on hands-on projects and completed several successful fundraising projects at their school.

John’s year as president ended with the traditional demotion party at the Silk Purse Ranch.  Following dinner and the special program produced by Joe McNamee, John experienced the traditional dunking in the grove’s lagoon.

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