Table Speech

“Address by the President”

June 30, 2010

Mr. Yukiharu Kodama
President, Tokyo Rotary Club

Today, I am concluding my one-year-term as the President. “The Future of Rotary is in Your Hands,” the theme set by Mr. John Kenny, RI President, calls upon each Rotarian to practice service activities by mastering the basic guiding principles of Rotary, to further activate each club and propel worldwide Rotary activities. Our club continued to adopt the two themes, “friendship building” and “joy of service activities,” set by our former president Mr. Miyauchi, as they coincide with the notion of Mr. Kenny.

 Let me highlight some initiatives we have taken during the Rotary Year 2009. We launched a special committee to organize and prepare for the upcoming 90th Anniversary Commemorative Ceremony in October. Extensive discussions will continue during Rotary Year 2010 under the leadership of our new President Mogi to identify and develop a district-wide big project to celebrate our club’s centennial year, succeeding our 10-year-project, “Removal of Anti-personnel Landmines in Cambodia.” We have successfully completed this project in February with a Completion Ceremony held at Siem Reap, the Kingdom of Cambodia, attended by many Rotarians who actually observed its significance and accomplishments. This project was initiated by our club and developed into a long-term historical achievement with the participation of many other clubs.

 As for Yoneyama Memorial Foundation, we have increased annual contributions up to 16,000 yen by each member for this Rotary Year, so that the stable flow of contributions will be secured for scholarship. Thanks to your understanding and cooperation, we succeeded in maintaining the same level of contributions as last year, totaling 10 million yen. I am convinced sound funding will further enhance “friendship building” by enabling the training of more people and international personal exchanges.

 Membership development and attracting new members are challenges faced by all clubs under the current economic situation, and our club is no exception. Thanks to you cooperation, we increased membership towards the beginning of June, yet we ended the year with a small net loss of members due to the deaths or resignations of some members.

 We were honored to invite Mr. Yang Guang-Ping from the newly-founded Yoneyama Alumni Association in China to our 1st Club Forum held last October. Our club must seek ways to deepen ties with the 3 Alumni Associations in South Korea, Taiwan and China to further enhance “friendship building.”

 We enjoyed the beautiful flute quartet by LINX for our 89th Anniversary Meeting and Family Party. We were also honored to have the presence of Her Imperial Highness Princess Hisako Takamado for the RI 105th Anniversary Meeting and Family Party and enjoyed her insightful speech on “Environmental Conservation through Birds” with many impressive slide images.

 I truly enjoyed one of the basic guiding principles of our club “joy of service activities” throughout this year. Let me conclude my speech by expressing my sincere gratitude to you all during this Rotary Year.

“Address by the Secretary”
Mr. Kazuhiro Kashiwabara
Secretary, Tokyo Rotary Club

I have been engaged in the management of Tokyo Rotary Club during the past two and a half years, first as Vice Secretary and then as Secretary. My duties for this traditional position gave me precious opportunities to get back to the basics of Rotary activities. Let me wrap up this Rotary Year as the Secretary.

The first weekly meeting of Rotary Year 2009 was held on July 1st 2009, and today we are concluding with our 45th meeting. Average attendance rate for the first half was 67.45%, a slight drop of -2.59% from the average of Rotary Year 2008. I would like to call for your regular attendance or make-up to maintain attendance rate over 50%, stipulated in the Rotary Club articles, and continue our “friendship building.”

  As of June 1st, average age of our members was 68.78 (+0.05 from the beginning of this Rotary Year) with total membership of 330. Although we welcomed 22 new members, 24 left by the end of June, giving a net loss of 2 members compared with our goal of a net increase of 2.

President Kodama has set “friendship building” and “joy of service activities” to be our continuous themes of this year.

We deepened our friendships through various activities, including our 89th Anniversary Weekly Meeting and Family Party in October, attended by 203 members and guests, as well as our traditional Christmas Family Party, attended by 255 members and guests. We enjoyed beautiful classical music by the female flute quartet LINX, and Christmas songs performed by Tokyo RC’s male chorus group led by Mr. Kurosawa with President Kodama’s piano accompaniment and by Tokyo RAC.

  We have successfully concluded our 10-year-project of “Anti-personnel Landmine Removal” by the Completion Ceremony held on February 5th 2010, at Siem Reap in Cambodia. In total 201 Rotarians and family members from District 2580 and other districts attended this splendid event, of which 49 joined from Tokyo Rotary Club. Our club proposed this project in 1998 under the leadership of then Governor Sumao Tokumasu, and this project was approved to be a district-wide initiative for District 2580 in 2000.

 President Kodama promoted “collaboration with Yoneyama Memorial Foundation” this year, a scholarship program which honors the achievements of Mr. Umekichi Yoneyama, the first president of our club and respected as a father of Japanese RC. Panel discussions on “Social service learned through Yoneyama” were held during the 1st Club Forum in October 2009, with Mr. Toshio Itabashi (Director of Yoneyama Foundation) and Mr. Yang Guang-Ping (Yoneyama alumnus from China) as panelists, to deepen understanding on the scholarship initiative. Thanks to your cooperation and generosity, contributions exceeded 10 million yen this year.

  Active discussions unfolded on Commemorative project for our 90th Anniversary as well as how to attract new members during the 2nd Club Forum in April. Extensive discussions will continue to Rotary Year 2010.