The centennial history of Rotary in New Zealand and the Pacific, Mana Tangata People of Action, by Dr Stephen Clarke, was launched at a very enjoyable celebration event at the National Library in Wellington on 12 May. The event was attended by over 200 Rotarians from our District and other Districts of New Zealand. MC’d by co-centennial Patron, former Governor General and member of the Rotary Club of Wellington, Sir Anand Satyanand, other guest speakers were co-patron and Past Rotary International President, Bill Boyd, of Auckland, centennial committee member, Tony Caughey from the Rotary Club of Auckland, and 17 year old Steph Edlin, of Wellington. Steph, who is aspiring to be a Wellington City Councillor, spoke the language of youth and belief, looking forward to meeting Rotary needs in different ways from past generations.

Book launches are not always inspiring affairs, but this one had all the hallmarks of a special celebration of Rotary achievements and wanting to do more in a different world we live in from the early years of the 20th century.

The foreword to the book Ka mua, ka muri says it all- Walking backwards into the future. It was a special moment, the launch, for Craig Horrocks, current DG 9920 of Auckland, as it was his great grandfather, George Fowlds, a former minister of education and public health, and a self-made businessman from Auckland who became the special commissioner appointed by Rotary International to launch Rotary in New Zealand.

District 9940 DG Gillian Jones had the honour of opening the Rotary centennial exhibition following the book launch.