Rotary International president chosen from Caribbean region

Barry Rassin of the Rotary Club of East Nassau in New Providence, Bahamas, became the president of the Rotary International, this month.

He is the first Rotary International president to be selected from his home District 7020, which also includes the Cayman Islands, Anguilla, British Virgin Islands, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Barts, St. Maarten, St. Martin, Turks and Caicos, and U.S. Virgin Islands.

According to a press release from Rotary International, Mr. Rassin and his wife, the First Lady of Rotary, Esther Rassin, will reside in Evanston, Illinois, USA, the headquarters location of Rotary International. This location often serves as a stopover point for a president who typically travels to more than 50 countries in support of Rotary projects throughout the year.

Mr. Rassin, who was selected on July 1, takes over from Australian Ian Riseley.

District 7020 is home to almost 90 Rotary clubs and 50 Rotaract Clubs across 11 Caribbean jurisdictions. The new district governor for District 7020 is Dr. Patrick Adizua of the Rotary of Club of Mandeville, Jamaica.

“In support of Rotary International’s theme for the Rotary year, ‘Be the Inspiration,’ District 7020 will focus its activities for the year on the phrase, ‘Share your Love for Rotary,’ as it seeks to work with and support youth and to encourage and strengthen diversity in the Rotary clubs of the district,” according to the Rotary press release.

While Rotary has been long associated with the fight against polio, the 2018-19 Rotary year sees the launch of a new, collaborative, multi-year initiative within District 7020 titled the “HANWASH Project.” The project is a partnership with the government of Haiti and other nongovernmental organizations.

President Rassin said potable water supplies are restricted in towns and cities across all 10 departments of Haiti at specific hours of the day. The project aims to bring clean potable water to all 71 communal sections of the country.

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