Rotary, the world’s first service organization, was founded Feb. 23, 1905 in Chicago by attorney Paul Harris, when he met with three friends to discuss an idea - that businessmen should get together periodically to enjoy each other’s company and enlarge their circle of business and professional acquaintances. They rotated their meetings to each member’s place of business to become acquainted with one another’s vocation, thus the name Rotary.
Rotary is an organization of business and professional persons united worldwide who provide humanitarian service, encourage high ethical standards in all vocations, and help build goodwill and peace in the world. Rotary is non-religious and non-governmental, open to every race, culture and creed. Rotary clubs are autonomous and can determine their own service projects to create innovative solutions to meet community needs.
The Rotary Club of Jefferson County is one of 66 clubs with over 4125 members in District 5110. The District covers an area from Lincoln City on the coast, east through Central Oregon and south just across the California border, including four California clubs. There are four Rotary clubs in Bend, one each in Sun River, Redmond, Sisters and Prineville.
Since 1986, it is calculated that the Rotary Club of Jefferson County has donated over $500,000, to various Jefferson County agencies, schools, and other group projects. This Rotary Club also gives up to seven college scholarships annually to graduating seniors from Madras and Culver as well as scholarships for students to the Rotary Youth Leadership Academy. We support an international exchange program sponsoring and hosting a foreign exchange student for an academic year at Madras High School, and arranging for a local high school student to spend a year abroad.