Posted on Aug 15, 2022
We were joined by members of Upper Hutt Rotary for the evening. President Kathy Bryant and Phyllis Strachan, President Upper Hutt Rotary welcomed District Governor Elect Wayne Gordon.  After twenty years in the army and a stint as a chef at Scott Base, Wayne is now in the residential construction business in Fielding. As District Governor Elect, he is very conscious of the fact that Rotary membership in our area has declined by 24% in the past few years. Halfway through visiting all the clubs in District 9940, he sees a need for change, but does not wish to see the baby thrown out with the bathwater.  "If a person does away with their traditional way of living and throws away their good customs, they had better first make sure that they have something of value to replace them." 
Wayne is currently working on the concept of "regionalisation".   He knows that the Pacific Island clubs sometimes feel swamped by their bigger neighbours  in Rotary, and that within New Zealand some clubs are just too small to fit in with the current structure.  He believes, too, that technology has made change possible, with more connectivity between separate interest groups and even different types of groups - digital, composite etc.  Similarly, we could be better off with a single national structure in New Zealand, able to speak with one voice and thereby carrying more weight with both government and the corporate world.
Implementation would be:
Stage 1: to end 2022 planning, design, transition, and implementation
Stage 2: to mid-2023 Election and training of regional office bearers and Area Leaders
Stage 3: to mid-2024 Transfer of initial District functions to region
Stage 4: to mid-2026 Further transfer functions from districts.  The 2-year pilot complete.
Wayne emphasised that there is nothing inherently wrong with traditional Rotary activities "There is nothing wrong with sausage sizzles", and the current structure will continue until at least 2026 but we need to look beyond these. He is therefore working, with others in Australia and Oceania, on a pilot scheme of a new structure.  Rotary International has given $100,000 to enable the trial.  Clubs will be invited to participate and ultimately will vote on whether to adopt the new structure, with a 66% majority needed for change.
For further details check: