May 17, 2017

Meeting Recap
            Greetings fellow Rotarians!  Today we held our annual scholarship luncheon to honor the six recipients of the Essex Rotary Scholarship and the recipient of the Carolyn Barra Memorial Scholarship.  The Essex Rotary scholars each received $1,500.00 from the Club.  The recipients were chosen on the basis of their dedication to the motto of “service above self”.  The first recipient was Hannah Baker from Essex High School.  Hannah was awarded the first annual Ray Cota Memorial Scholarship in memory of longtime Rotarian and community member, Ray Cota.  Hannah announced that she will be attending Holy Cross University in the Fall.  The second recipient was Henry Weith, also from Essex High School.  Henry will be attending Northeastern University this year.  Our third recipient was Kai Gravel-Pucillo from Mount Mansfield Union High School.  Like Henry, Kai will be attending Northeastern University.  Eliza Bryan from Mount Mansfield Union High School was our fourth recipient.  After taking a gap year to travel the world, Eliza will be enrolling at the University of Vermont in the fall of 2018.  The fifth recipient was Geraughty Badger from the Center for Technology in Essex.  Geraughty will begin his freshman year at the University of Kansas in the fall.  The final recipient of an Essex Rotary scholarship was Hari Adhikari from the Center for Technology.  Hari delivered what was probably the most emotional talk of the day as she described how, in 9 years, she went from living in a refugee camp without many basic amenities to being accepted at the University of Vermont where she will study nursing.  Last, but not least was the presentation of the Carolyn Barra Memorial Scholarship.  Carolyn Barra was an Essex High School student who was academically gifted, was passionate about the performing arts and was committed to community service.  Carolyn passed away in 2002 during her senior year of high school due to complications from primary pulmonary hypertension.  Each year, a scholarship is awarded in her memory to an Essex High School student who excels in academics and is heavily involved in both the performing arts and community service.  This year’s recipient was Benjamin Centracchio.  Ben was awarded a scholarship of $3,000.00 and he will be joining Henry and Kai at Northeastern University this coming fall. Congratulations to all seven of these exceptional individuals on earning these scholarships. A big thank you goes out to Dave Barra and members of his scholarship committee for making this day such a memorable event each year!
Essex Rotary Golf Tournament
            We inching closer to the big day, but there is still a lot of work to be done! Our goal is to secure 50 hole sponsors and we currently have 29! If you haven’t contacted your assigned sponsors yet, please do so soon!  If you are having trouble identifying potential sponsors, please contact Dave Johnson and he will provide you with names of potential sponsors.  Nancy Freeze will also be circulating a sign-up sheet for volunteers for this event in the next few weeks.  Remember, this is our Club’s biggest fundraiser and we need every Rotarian to pitch in on making it a success!
Heavenly Food Pantry Shifts
            The next opportunities to volunteer at the Heavenly Food Pantry will be May 25th and June 22nd.  Please contact Sharon Dettenrieder if you would like to sign up for shifts.
Upcoming Meeting Schedule:  May 24, 2017 – Our speaker will be Theresa Snow, Executive Director of Salvation Farm.
For the complete list of upcoming speakers and information about the Club, please go to our website at   Be sure to also follow us on Facebook at , on Instagram at and on Twitter at
       Yours in Rotary,
Jason Ruwet