675: R I Convention Opens
- Highlights from the 94th Annual RI Convention
Convention News - 1 June
Approximately 15,000 Rotarians from 130 countries joined together to
Sow the Seeds of Love in sunny Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, on
Sunday, 1 June, the first day of the 94th annual RI Convention.
In his welcoming keynote address, RI President Bhichai Rattakul
expressed his heartfelt appreciation to the host city and encouraged
attendees to Sow the Seeds of Love worldwide. "Here, in this warm and
welcoming city of Brisbane, we have gathered with an abundance of
experience, commitment, and most of all love," said President
Rattukul. "Our founder, Paul Harris, saw tolerance as fundamental to
Rotary. It is this spirit of tolerance that is one of Rotary's
greatest gifts sharing fellowship and service with someone who has
a different religion, or culture, or language than the one we know.
When we reach across borders and oceans to collaborate on
international service projects, we show the world what is possible if
we only listen to each other with open hearts and open minds."
The Queensland Youth Symphony, the Conroy Dancers, and "Australia's
most celebrated balladeer" (and local Rotarian) Graeme Conners, also
treated opening plenary session attendees to an hour-long performance
highlighting the spirit and diversity of Australia.
Another highlight of the opening day was the dedication of the Sir
Thomas Brisbane Seat at the Roma Street Parkland. The seat, named
after the former New South Wales governor, is a permanent gift to the
host city. Coordinated by the Rotary clubs of Stone Corner,
Queensland, and Largs, Scotland, Sir Thomas' birthplace the
Helidon sandstone sculpture reflects both the social and natural
history of the site.
"This is a testament to the work that Rotary has done in our
country," said John Puttick, chairman of the Host Organization
Committee. "It is a gift to the people of Queensland."
Courtesy:R I Website