The Role of a Past District Governor

Past RI President Cliff Dochterman remarks that past district governors (PDG) never seem to die; they just accumulate. There seems to be truth in that comment since Rotary adds approximately 530 new PDGs to the world wide supply on an annual basis. From that number less than 10 will take the next step in Rotary leadership and join the board of directors of Rotary International. That leads to the question of what do the other 500 PDGs accomplish during the rest of their Rotary careers.

It is my observation that many of those who join the PDG ranks move on to participate in Zone and multi-district activities like president and governor elect training. Others assume that all of their training and experience should be employed within their district as chairman of many committees. In reality those are task that can be filled by PDGs and they are often the right people to fill many of those needs, but there are far more PDGs than there are open positions to be filled. That often leaves a lot of very good people being put out to pasture.

That reminds me of a quote from Tom Peters, “Leaders don’t create followers. They create more leaders.” Tom Peters is a well-known author and consultant who gives us great wisdom and guidance to all PDGs. It is not our role, or responsibility, to chair every committee in our district; it is our role to follow that simple statement that is defined in the Object of Rotary, ‘encourage and foster the ideal of service as a basis of worthy enterprise.’ As a PDG it is my goal to put Tom Peters charge together with the words from the Object of Rotary.

My charge is to encourage and foster others as the future leaders of Rotary. It has been my privilege to serve as an instructor at President-Elect Training Seminars on ten occasions and Governor-Elect on five occasions. There are many others who should have those privileges. But I am not done yet. I intend to use my new interest in social media to expand on my efforts to encourage and foster the ideal of service with this article being the first of many in that effort.

You can join me in this journey, or you can unsubscribe and delete my messages. You can even join me in this effort with your comments and ‘likes’ on Facebook. You and even forward my message to others who might benefit from what I have to say.

The Personal Opinions, Motivations and Proddings of Rotarian Steve Garrett