Jean Harris Award Given to Marilyn Ryan!

Marilyn Ryan was presented with the prestigious Jean Harris Award at a recent meeting of the Rotary Club of Westfield. This award is given to a non- Rotarian who does exceptional service to the community. It is a District wide award. The Rotary District 7475 comprises of 77 clubs through 9 counties in northern New Jersey.

District Awards Chair David Breidinger, from the Rotary Club of Trenton, presented this award on June 7, 2022.

Past President and Rotary Club Foundation Chair Liz Ensslin nominated Marilyn because she has worked closely with her for many years through the Rotary’s food program to feed the hungry. Her remarks are as follows:

“Marilyn has dedicated her entire life to those in need. After earning a bachelor’s degree in education from Seton Hall University in South Orange, Marilyn embarked on a 20-year career as a teacher in the parochial school systems in both Elizabeth and Linden. She returned to school and became a licensed practical nurse, working in the Rahway Hospital Pediatrics Unit for the next 12 years.  In 1985, she assumed the position of Pastoral Associate at Parish Community of Saint Helen in Westfield. In this role Marilyn coordinates many Outreach Programs and Eucharistic Ministry.  Marilyn is the coordinator of the Helping Hands and Hearts Program, which is designed to provide temporary financial or material assistance to those in need in our community.  Marilyn serves on the advisory board of Sister Pat’s Camp for Kids with Cancer in New York and is an Emeritus Member of the Board of St. Joseph’s Social Center in Elizabeth.  What is most important to know about Marilyn is that she is truly one of the most selfless people we know. The poor, the hungry and those in need always come first.  She is the driver of our Soup Kitchens, Food Pantry, Service Auction and many other ministries.

When it comes to her work, Marilyn leads by example.  She empowers others to lead their ministries for the poor and disadvantaged, but she also never hesitates to roll up her sleeves, pack Thanksgiving Baskets or deliver gifts to the poor. Marilyn knows first-hand that to “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”  Her legacy is not only the work she does herself but the work she supports and empowers others to do. While we think of Marilyn delivering to those in need, we also deeply value the support she provides to members of our community who are suffering from illness, grief or a family crisis. She has truly touched the hearts of many and taught us how to serve others and be an advocate for others less fortunate than ourselves.”

Many guests attended the meeting and gave Marilyn accolades for her dedicated service to the community and surrounding avenues.

The Rotary Club of Westfield meets the first three Tuesdays of the month at noon at Limani Restaurant on North Ave. Guests are always Welcome.  For information check the Rotary Club website at www.westfieldrotary.org or contact secretary Michael Hart by email drmhart@yahoo.com

Photo: left to right: District Awards Chair David Breidinger, Jean Harris Award recipient Marilyn Ryan, Rotary Club Foundation Chair Liz Ensslin.

Jean Harris Award Given to Marilyn Ryan! 2022-06-11 03:00:00Z 0

Obike Book Drive 2022

Westfield Rotarians loaded a cargo van with over 3,000 books collected by McKinley and Jefferson Schools Early Clubs and Roosevelt Intermediate's Interact Club.  The books were driven to Hartford, CT to go on a shipping container leaving for Obike, Nigeria.  The books collected are for the new schools being built by Fr. Kingsley's (center in 1st photo) charity DMIWOO (Divine Mercy International Widows and Orphans Organization).
https://dmiwoo.org
 
 
Obike Book Drive 2022 2022-04-29 03:00:00Z 0

Breakfast with the Bands

It was an honor for our club to have District Governor Shelby Rhodes come to help us with Breakfast with the Bands this past weekend. You can see her cutting fruit!
Breakfast with the Bands 2022-03-07 04:00:00Z 0

Westfield Rotary Inducts Two New Members
 

On Tuesday, January 11, 2022, at the regular weekly Rotary meeting, the Rotary Club of Westfield, NJ inducted two new members: Stephan Specht and Mark Wright. Rotary is a business networking and service club for successful business people who wish to “give back” to their communities. The Westfield Club has 47 members, and there are 1.3 million Rotarians in 33,000 Rotary clubs in 166 countries worldwide.
 
Stephan Specht is a Rotarian transfer from Germany and moved to Westfield last summer with his family.  Mark Wright was born and raised in Vermont and is the son of a Rotarian dentist and a high school math teacher.  
 
Welcome to you both!
 
Photo: Left to Right:  New member Mark Wright; Past District Governor Dr. D. Michael Hart; Bianca Wright; new member Stephan Specht; President elect Barbara Frantz; President Blake Width.
 
Westfield Rotary Inducts Two New Members  2022-01-25 04:00:00Z 0

Nancy Jackson

Westfield Rotarians mourn the loss of fellow Rotarian, Nancy Jackson. Nancy joined the club in 1998 and earned 4 Paul Harris recognitions. She is Past President and served for many years as club secretary as well as on the scholarship committee.  Nancy was one of the first women to join Rotary and loved all things Rotary.  She will be remembered for her dedication to the club and for being a role model for new members.
 
Nancy Jackson Liz Ensslin 2021-12-02 04:00:00Z 0

Donations Needed!

OUR NEIGHBORS DISPLACED BY HURRICANE IDA NEED OUR HELP!
 
We are still collecting bags of food for families in Elizabeth.  All contributions go to St. Joseph's Social Services Center.  Please see the list below for updated list of items needed.  Collection by Rotary is every Wednesday morning before 11:00am at either 438 Poe Ave or 529 Hanford Place in Westfield.  
 
Please consider donating the following “hotel friendly” (ready to eat or microwaveable) items:
 
Bottled water
Canned fish and chicken – in flip top cans or pouches
Fruit – in flip top cans or plastic cups packed in 100% juice or dried
Applesauce – no added sugar in plastic jars or cups
Shelf stable milk or milk alternatives
Shelf stable microwaveable meals such as stews, chili, macaroni and cheese, hearty soups (low sodium options are welcome)
Whole grain cereal
Oatmeal – instant or in microwaveable containers
Nuts and Nut butters Granola Bars
Crackers – preferably whole grain
100% Fruit or Vegetable Juice
Please No Glass
 
Thank you! smiley
Donations Needed! 2021-09-13 03:00:00Z 0

2021 Rotary Scholarship Winners

Rotary Club Awards 2021 Scholarships
 
WESTFIELD -- The Rotary Club of Westfield is proud to announce 20 scholarship awards to Westfield residents totaling $117,400. The awards were given at the Westfield High School awards night on May 26.
 
"It is always wonderful to award scholarships to hardworking and deserving Westfield students. This year's applicant group was incredibly impressive," Rotary Scholarship Committee Chair Carl Peer said. "As part of Rotary's commitment to education, these scholarships have funded over $3 million dollars of higher learning since 1967."
 
The scholarships, which are funded by various means, are administered by The Rotary Club of Westfield and awarded based on academic excellence, financial need, and the student's commitment to community service.
 
Harry Sturcke Scholars are: Rebekkah Dayon who will attend Montclair State University ($7,000); Martha Byrne who will attend Notre Dame ($7,000); Timothy O'Brien who will attend Washington College ($4,000) and Emily Bergerman who will attend Boston University ($4,000). The scholarship funding is overseen by the Westfield Rotary Club Foundation.
 
The Robert and Winifred Read Health Science Scholarship in memory of Linda Read was awarded to Aidan Bertsch ($1,000) who will attend University of Wisconsin; Joy Mulzoff who will attend James Madison University ($8,000) and Gianna Grace Magniamele who will attend Franklin and Marshall College ($1,000). The scholarship funding is overseen by the Westfield Foundation.
 
The Chester A. Gerdes Scholar award was given to Eva Terry who will attend the University of Virginia ($5,000). The scholarship funding is overseen by the Westfield Foundation.
 
Sebastian Wroe who will attend Stevens Institute of Technology and Dilany Santamaria, who will attend Brigham Young University-Provo were each awarded the four year $15,000 scholarship in memory of Charles and Florence Wallace. A $5,000 scholarship in memory of the Wallaces was also award to Katherine Wistner who will attend the University of Pittsburg. The scholarship funding is overseen by the Westfield Foundation.
 
Andrew Pink, who will attend Ohio University and Ralph Cerrero, who will attend Penn State were each awarded the $6,000 Georgianna Pollack Scholar. The scholarship funding is overseen by the Westfield Rotary Club Foundation.
 
A $3,400 scholarship in memory of Phil Richardson was awarded to Liam Robb, who will attend Mitchell College. The scholarship funding is overseen by the Westfield Rotary Club Foundation.
The 2021 Rotary Scholars are: Michaela Hobson (Roger Williams University $6,000), Elizabeth Bielen (Lehigh University $5,000), Dilany Santamaria (Brigham Young University-Provo $3,000) and Maxwell Zander Scialabba (College of Arts and Sciences Cornell University $1,000). The scholarship funding is overseen by the Westfield Rotary Club Foundation.
 
Additionally, two Robert and Winifred Read Health and Law Scholarships were awarded to Xenia Kobori (University of Toronto $10,000) and Caroline Bielen (University of Pittsburgh $5,000) who reside in the Town of Westfield and who are interested in pursuing a law degree. The scholarship funding is overseen by the Westfield Foundation.
 
The Rotary Club of Westfield is a service organization of business men and women. Website www.westfieldrotary.com  It is part of an International Organization of 1.2 million people in 200 countries around the world. www.rotary.org Local projects include hunger insecurity, helping homeless veterans, planting trees, supporting youth service clubs in the schools, and scholarships. Guests are always welcome to attend meetings. For information contact Club Secretary Dr. D. Michael Hart at drmhart@yahoo.com
2021 Rotary Scholarship Winners 2021-06-18 03:00:00Z 0

St. Joseph's Food Collection

We are still collecting bags of food for families in Elizabeth.  All contributions go to St. Joseph's Social Services Center.  Please see the list below for updated list of items needed.  Collection is every Wednesday morning before 11:00am at either 438 Poe Ave or 529 Hanford Place in Westfield.  
 
St. Joseph's Food Collection Brendan Bertsch 2021-04-02 03:00:00Z 0

Be The Light! Luminaries to Fight Hunger

Come together. 
Support those in need. 
Be the Light. 
 
You can help fight hunger in Union County by purchasing luminaries and displaying them at dusk on November 29th, the Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend.  This effort is jointly sponsored by the Westfield United Fund , the Presbyterian Church of Westfield and the Rotary Club of Westield.   Please help to spread the message of light and hope as we support those in need. 
 
Each luminary kit sold raises more than $10 for non-sectarian hunger programs in Union County. These programs include The Westfield Food Pantry, St. Joseph’s Social Service Center, PCW’s Agape Local Food Boxes and Agape Community Kitchen, The Rotary Club’s Backpack Program and the Elizabeth Coalition to House the Homeless. 
 
Purchase luminaries or make a donation to this effort awww.bethelightwestfield.org.  
 
Luminaries will be available for pick-up the weekend before the event and can be purchased through November 14th. Purchasers will be emailed with details of pick up location. 

Help us line our streets with the light of hope burning within our community...Be the Light, Westfield!   
Come together. 
Support those in need. 
Be the Light. 
 
Be The Light! Luminaries to Fight Hunger Marc Millet 2020-10-31 03:00:00Z 0

"OMG, someone didn't forget us with all this virus and stuff!"

The Rotary Club of Westfield, in cooperation with the Rotary Club of Morristown and General Needs veterans service organization, has been visiting and supporting veterans housed at the Hope for Veterans® Transitional Housing housing program on the campus of Lyons VA hospital. These veterans are in the process of recovering from homelessness.  The Hope for Veterans program, operated by Community Hope, provides transitional housing as well as services such as mental health therapy, access to employment and educational resources and placement in permanent housing for these men and women.
 
But they also need to know that our community has not forgotten their service to our country. The Rotary effort helps to communicate this in a tangible way. Each week, Rotary volunteers are delivering a special luncheon for 80 veterans each week as a way to brighten their day and tell them that we remember. The meals are prepared by local restaurants.
 
To support this effort and other programs to feed the less fortunate in our community, please CLICK  HERE and donate to the Westfield Rotary Club Foundation. Donations are especially welcome now because every dollar donated fighting hunger, up to $10,000 will be matched by a special gift from one Rotary member.
 
As One veteran said "OMG, someone didn't forget us with all this virus and stuff!"
 
We must not and will not forget our veterans. 
 
 
Dressed for the Occasion!
 
Rotarian  collecting meals at 5 Star Catering and Deli.
 
 
 
"OMG, someone didn't forget us with all this virus and stuff!" 2020-05-05 03:00:00Z 0



Westfield Educator Jeanine Gottko to Receive Philhower  Award

Ms. Jeanine Gottko, master technology teacher for grades K-8 in the Westfield Public Schools, will receive the Philhower Fellowship award at the online meeting of the Rotary Club of Westfield on Tuesday, May 5. The Philhower Fellowship is awarded to honor a teacher in the Westfield Public Schools who has made an outstanding contribution to elementary education.  Each year, the honoree is selected by a committee which includes Rotarians and Westfield educators. The award is given in memory of Charles Philhower, a founder and past President of the Club and a lifelong Rotarian.
 
As master technology teacher, Ms. Gottko is responsible for training teachers in the use of instructional technology such as computer-aided learning systems.  When the Westfield schools had to switch rapidly to distance learning to deal with  the covid-19 epidemic, Ms. Gottko played a pivotal role in helping students and staff make this difficult transition and assuring that all students continued their education during these trying times.
 
Westfield Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Margaret Dolan stated “Jeanine is so deserving of this important recognition.Her years as a classroom teacher combined with an impressive knowledge of digital learning tools and technology has been invaluable to our school community, especially during the educational upheaval caused by COVID-19" 
Westfield Educator Jeanine Gottko to Receive Philhower  Award Marc Millet 2020-05-02 03:00:00Z 0

Rotary Donates Ventilators to NJ Hospitals

Rotary District 7475, which includes the Rotary Club of Westfield and 82 other Rotary clubs in central and northern New Jersey, is donating 10 ventilators to hospitals in New Jersey. Three are going to Trinitas Hospital, and seven are going to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital .  This effort was spearheaded by Dr. D. Michael Hart, a longtime Westfield Rotarian and a past District Governor of Rotary.  Dr. Hart currently serves as Foundation Chairman of District 7475.  As a part of the effort, Rotary volunteers located refurbished ventilators which could be purchased in this environment, and arranged a grant proposal for approximately $100,000. This proposal was submitted to the Rotary Foundation which is supported by Rotarians throughout the world. The Rotary Foundation approved and funded the grant proposal in days, rather than the normal months required for study and approval.
 
Please click here to read more about this effort.
Rotary Donates Ventilators to NJ Hospitals 2020-04-10 03:00:00Z 0

Helping Keep People Fed During The Crisis

Disadvantaged families are continually in crisis. When schools closed due to COVID, the school lunches many students depended on were not available, and they weren't receiving the “second lunch Tuesday” sandwiches Westfield schools have provided for many years. So Westfield Rotarians stepped up to help fill this critical need by distributing food to families directly and through St Joseph’s Social Service Center/The Elizabeth Coalition. Some of the food that was collected is shown in the photo below.
 
While schools have thankfully reopened, we continue to support other programs to feed the less fortunate in our community.  Please CLICK  HERE and donate to the Westfield Rotary Club Foundation. 
 
 
 
 
Helping Keep People Fed During The Crisis 2020-03-22 03:00:00Z 0

Breakfast With The Bands

Don’t miss the Rotary Club of Westfield’s 54th Annual Breakfast with the Bands!
The breakfast will be held on Saturday, February 29th from 8am to noon at Westfield High School, 550 Dorian Road. This annual community event features performances by top bands from Westfield High School, Roosevelt Intermediate School and Edison Intermediate School. You can enjoy these performances, encourage our young musicians, and have a great breakfast with your neighbors and friends, all while supporting programs which help make Westfield a very special community. All proceeds benefit Rotary’s scholarship and community grants programs and Project Hunger.
The event is Sponsored by Jayson Astel of Edward Jones and Mary Ellen O'Boyle of Sothebys.
Tickets are $10 and available from Rotarians or at the door. You can also purchase tickets online--Click Here
Breakfast With The Bands 2020-02-13 04:00:00Z 0

Hats, Gloves and Socks Needed Right Now!

 
The Rotary Club of Westfield is collecting hats, gloves and socks for homeless people in our community.  Please bring your items, which should be new or used but clean and in good condition, to the drop boxes located at Columbia Bank, 251 North Ave. West, and at Northfield Bank, 828 South Ave. West. Both locations are accessible only during banking hours.
The donated items will be distributed through St. Joseph Social Service Center in Elizabeth, St. Ann's Soup Kitchen in Newark, and at the Transitional Shelter for homeless veterans at the VA Hospital campus in Lyons.
Hats, Gloves and Socks Needed Right Now! 2020-01-11 04:00:00Z 0

Rotary Bike Collection Changes 100 Lives In  A Day

On Saturday, October 19, Westfield Rotarians collected 100 bicycles and 10 sewing machines for re-use. Thanks to the generosity of the Westfield community, the lives of 110 people in underdeveloped nations, and their communities, will be better. The collection total this year was far in excess of prior years, and adds to the total of over 2100 bicycles and 110 sewing machines collected since the first annual collection.
 
The Rotarian volunteers set up each donated bicycle in a compact configuration for shipment by removing the pedals, turning the handlebars , and removing bulky accessories. Many hands made light work.  The fellowship which comes from working alongside old friends and new acquaintances in a worthwhile cause made the time fly by. The event culminated with loading the bicycles into the truck for shipment, and a hearty cheer when the day's collection was tallied.

 
Rotary Bike Collection Changes 100 Lives In A Day 2019-10-22 03:00:00Z 0

Bike and Sewing Machine Collection Drive Saturday  October 19

From 9am to noon on Saturday, October 19 at the Board of Education Building, 302 Elm St., Westfield Rotary will collect bicycles and sewing machines for re-use by people in underdeveloped countries. This event, held annually by Rotary in cooperation with Pedals for Progress, has collected over 2000 bicycles and over 100 sewing machines in past years.
 
That unused bike or sewing machine taking up space in your home can make a real difference in the life of someone less fortunate. For example, a farmer who tends a field 10 miles from his village will spend 5 hours or more just walking to and from the field each day. A bicycle will free up 3 or more hours every working day for the farmer to earn more and improve his life and his community. Pedals for Progress ships the bicycles to the receiving country and repairs them in a shop within the receiving country to provide added benefits in employment and skills. The bicycles are then sold for a nominal price, typically a dollar or two, within the reach of those willing to help themselves. Sewing machines allow empower women to earn income for their families. That machine which you have not touched for years can help a child's family afford school fees and break the cycle of poverty.
 
No advance registration is required--Just bring in your sewing machines and bicycles! Bicycles and sewing machines do NOT have to be in working order. It costs $40 to collect, process, ship, rebuild and distribute each bicycle. A donation toward shipping costs is necessary (suggested minimum $10 per bike). In addition to your donations, Peoples Capital Group has provided a donation to help offset this expense.
 
 
 
 
 
Bike and Sewing Machine Collection Drive Saturday October 19 Marc Millet 2019-09-29 03:00:00Z 0

Rotary Sponsors Community Event to Fight Hunger

At the Westfield Rotary's sandwich drive event on September 16,2019, our community joined together to attack hunger in our community. Seventy five people came together to make sandwiches for distribution to those in need.  The participants came to the assembly hall of the Presbyterian Church in Westfield armed with bread, meat, cheese and a desire to help their fellow man. Many hands joined together to produce over 1100 healthy and sandwiches. Rotarian volunteers organized the production process, supplied the necessary sanitary gloves and table coverings, joined with the community volunteers in making the sandwiches, and also collected and stored the sandwiches. The next day, Rotarians delivered the sandwiches to the community feeding programs of St.Joseph Social Service Center in Elizabeth and the Salvation Army in Plainfield.
 

 
Rotary Sponsors Community Event to Fight Hunger Marc Millet 2019-09-18 03:00:00Z 0

Westfield Rotary Selects New Officers

On June 25, the Rotary Club of Westfield installed new officers and directors who will serve from  July 2019 to June 2020. The members thanked outgoing President, Clark Lagemann and his board for their great service over the past year. Clark shared how proud he is of all the accomplishments the club made this year including Project Hunger in which Rotarians were able to serve lunches and provide weekend backpacks of food to nutritionally challenged youth in our community. The club also gave out over $24,000 in grants to local non-profit organizations and close to $100,000 in scholarships to Westfield students. .
Elizabeth ("Liz")  Ensslin was welcomed as the new President for the upcoming year. Liz is the owner of The InkWell Printers and has been a longtime Rotarian.  She is also an active in her church and in the community, an accomplished musician and a mother.  She is off and running with a great agenda to build the club up even more over the next year.
 
Westfield Rotary Selects New Officers Marc Millet 2019-07-20 03:00:00Z 0


Rotary Awards Scholarships to Local Students

On June 11, 2019, the Rotary Club of Westfield honored 18 local students with a total of $99,000 in scholarships, in individual awards ranging from $2,000 to $15,000. The scholars were chosen based on criteria of academic excellence, financial need and commitment to community service in keeping with Rotary's motto of "Service Above Self."  Rotary scholarship committee chair Carl Peer stated that "As we reviewed the records of this year's scholarship applicants and met with them in person, we were awed by the achievements of the fine young men and women of our community." 
Rotary Awards Scholarships to Local Students Marc Millet 2019-07-13 03:00:00Z 0

Helping people with disabilities make their own music

Music has been an important part of leading an ordinary life for students at the Music School for Children With Disabilities in Honor of Paul Harris in Lublin, Poland. Founded by Rotary members, the school serves 20 students with various disabilities, including Down syndrome, autism, and visual impairments. The Rotary Club of Lublin-Centrum-Maria Curie-Sklodowska has provided funding with help from Rotary Foundation Matching Grants and the Henryk Wieniawski Musical Society, which houses the school.
 
After their son Mateusz was born with underdeveloped eyes, Mariusz and Joanna Kania looked for ways to help him be active. When he showed an aptitude for music, they looked for a teacher and were thrilled to find the Paul Harris music school.
Helping people with disabilities make their own music 2015-05-01 00:00:00Z 0

Finding Safe Haven

For years, Angalia Bianca had slept in abandoned buildings throughout Chicago. She stole. She did drugs. She spent time in and out of jail for forgery, theft, trespassing, and possession of narcotics. But after she landed in prison for the seventh time, something changed -- Bianca knew she wanted a better life. She just didn’t know how to make it happen.
 
After serving her time, Bianca sought help from a local homeless organization, A Safe Haven, and moved to its shelter in the Rogers Park neighborhood. Bianca followed the program closely -- she attended all the required meetings, passed drug tests, and volunteered at every opportunity.
Finding Safe Haven 2015-05-01 00:00:00Z 0

India celebrates three years without polio

Throughout India and around the world, Rotary clubs are celebrating a major milestone: India has gone three years without a new case of polio. The last reported case was a two-year-old girl in West Bengal on 13 January 2011. To mark this historic triumph, Rotary clubs illuminated landmarks and iconic structures throughout the country with four simple but powerful words, "India is polio free."
 
The three-year achievement sets the stage for polio-free certification of the entire Southeast Asia region by the World Health Organization. The Indian government also plans to convene a polio summit in February to commemorate this victory in the global effort to eradicate polio.
 
India celebrates three years without polio 2014-02-26 00:00:00Z 0