Posted by Teresa Liu
International Women’s Day – March 8th was a time to celebrate the contribution of women in the world. To cite Elizabeth Cady Stanton: “The best protection any woman can have… is courage.” With the RI Convention 2023 almost on our doorstep in Australia, some moments at RI Conventions should never be forgotten by women in Rotary. At the 1950 Rotary Convention, an enactment to delete the word “male” from the Standard Rotary Club Constitution, was proposed by a Rotary club in India for the Rotary Council on Legislation meeting. 
At the 1977 Rotary Convention, three separate proposals to admit women into membership were submitted to the Rotary Council on Legislation for consideration. The year after, Rotary International terminated the Rotary Club of Duarte's membership in RI because the club admitted women as members, violating the RI Constitution and Standard Rotary Club Constitution. On May 4th 1987, the US Supreme Court ruled that Rotary clubs may not exclude women from membership based on gender. At it's first meeting after this US Supreme Court decision, (in 1989) the Rotary Council on Legislation voted to eliminate the requirement in the RI Constitution; that membership in Rotary clubs should be limited to men. This event remains a watershed moment in the history of Rotary. In July 1995, eight women became district governors, and Jennifer Jones began her term as the first female president of Rotary International in 2022.
The response to the decision was overwhelming: By June 1990, the number of female Rotarians had skyrocketed to over 20,000. The number of women members worldwide reached 195,000 in July 2010 (about 16% of Rotarians) and surpassed 277,000 in July 2020 (about 23% of Rotarians). RC of Glenferrie is way over the average with 34.4% of the active members being women. Well done, Glenferrie, it makes me very proud.
Celebration of the 20th Anniversary of Boroondara Farmers Market (BFM) – This celebration will occur at the BFM night at the club meeting on Tuesday, March 14th at KLTC, and at the unique, fun-filled BFM on Saturday, March 18th at Patterson Reserve.
March 13th, 2023 will be the 20th anniversary of the BFM. The club will have two occasions to celebrate the significant achievement of the BFM. On the BFM meeting night, Tuesday, March 14th, we’ll have our honorary member Geoff Wood to talk about the history of BFM. And the speaker from Education Chances will give us a presentation on the scholarship project which has been funded by the BFM. This project has assisted many students in the Boroondara area in the past 17 years. Welcome also to Councilor Susan Bigger. Let’s celebrate it together.
The special celebration on the site of the BFM at the Patterson Reserve will be on Saturday, March 18th. Working with the Boroondara Council, we’ll make it a successful day with entertainment for the loyal patrons of our BFM and a BBQ for the regular stallholders. Thanks to everyone who has supported the BFM, Council staff, Glenferrie Rotarians, patrons, stallholders, producers, etc. Please bring your family and friends along, and join the Mayor of Boroondara, Councilor Felicity Sinfield, for this celebration.
President Teresa