The SHINE Awards

Nominations 2019

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Book Fair
2nd AND 3rd MAY
Thousands of books.  Pick up great bargains.
Wagga Showground Saturay 8.00 am - 5.00 pm
Sunday 9.00 am - 3.00 pm

Club History

   Compiled by Laurie Fromholtz PHF

Click here to  go to Page 2 - Early History, Presidents Roll of Honour, Charter Members 

Click here to go to Page 3 - History Bytes - snippets of interesting facts about our Club

The Inaugural Meeting of club members was held on 17th October, 1929. The charter was dated 18th January, 1930 and was presented to the club on 17th May, 1930.

These were turbulent times. The U.S. share market collapsed on 'Black Tuesday' 26th October, 1929, precipitating the Great Depression. The club, under the Presidency of Harry Mitchelmore, who was also a town alderman, was heavily involved in a project to resettle homeless people in Gumly Gumly and North Wagga Wagga.

The Rotary Club of Wagga Wagga was sponsored by the Albury Club and it, in turn, sponsored the clubs of Cootamundra, Tumut, Junee, South Wagga and Tumbarumba. At the time the Rotary Club of Wagga Wagga was formed there were 6.6 million people in Australia; 1.2 million in Sydney, and 11,000 in Wagga Wagga. There were 31 rotary clubs in Australia and 3,349 in the world. Today there are 1.2 million Rotarians in 32,738 clubs throughout the world.

A significant event in the club's history was the visit by Rotary Founder, Paul Harris, in March 1935.

Our club has produced four District Governors in its history: Harry Gissing in 1952/53, Steve O'Halloran 1956/57, Ken White 1977/78 and Peter Walsh 1998/99. Steve O'Halloran progressed to be Rotary International's First Vice President in 1967/68.

The club, under President John Studdert, hosted the D9700 Conference in the Centennial Year of Rotary in 2005. This was also our club's 75th anniversary.

As well as its involvement in the many Rotary International and District 9700 initiatives, the club has initiated many significant projects.  In the 1940s the club sponsored migrants from Britain. In the 1950s a camp was established at Borambola to provide holidays for children of limited means. This eventually became a National Fitness Camp.

Many activities of the club over the years have made a major contribution to the community locally, nationally and internationally.

In 1955/56 the club commenced a series of Careers Advisory Events to help school leavers in the choice of their future directions. This project ran for many years.

In 1970 the club donated a vehicle to the District Nurse, and equipment to Meals on Wheels, and in 1977 established a Youth Emergency Service.

From 1984 to 1986 the club established a Girl Guide hall in Mount Austin and it continues to maintain the building and support this group. In 1987 a major project for Riding for the Disabled led to the continuing support of this facility. In that same year activities commenced to bring the fledgling Camp Quality to country areas. This was extremely successful and a number of camps were held before a local group was set up. This local group later split to become Country Hope, which still has the support of the club. The club was bequeathed a house from the Goodwin Estate, which it refurbished, sold and the money invested to enable continued support for children with cancer.

The club runs the Annual Book Fair, our biggest fundraiser.

In 2005, to celebrate the Centenary of Rotary International, the club refurbished Kyeamba Smith Hall, an important venue in the city.

Joining its ophthalmologist member, Alok Sharma, the club organized 'Eye Camps' in India in 2005 and 2007 providing critical treatment and surgery for many who otherwise could not afford this support. Aptly named "From Darkness to Light", this is an important international project and has the enthusiastic support of District 9700. The club also contributed to the refurbishment of the Don Bosco Orphanage for Boys in Pakistan with its sister club, Karachi Sunset Millennium.

In 2007 the Club has 51 members, its first woman President, Dr Leone Harvey-Smith, and is inspired with the same enthusiasm and ideals, which have driven it throughout its 78 years of fellowship and service to the community.

 L.J. F. 31/12/2007

Historian Michelle has dug up this great photo from the Museum of Wagga Wagga's archives. It dates to 1938, and was part of a street parade through Wagga, commemorating Australia's Sesquicentenary (150 years). It was taken by a man called Leslie Barrow. 

      Our Family Tree

  family tree

Click here to  go to Page 2 - Early History, Presidents Roll of Honour, Charter Members 


 Click here to go to Page 3 - History Bytes - snippets of interesting facts about our Club

Click here to go to Page 4 - 80th Anniversary - our celebrations and a little bit more history!

2019 - 2020

Rotary Club of Wagga Wagga

logo 2019-20

District 9700

South Wagga : Monday 6.15 pm Wagga RSL Club
Wagga Sunrise : Tuesday 7.15 am Elenents at The Gardens 
Wollundry Wagga : Tuesday 12.30 pm Wagga Commercial Club
Wagga Kooringal : Wednesday 6.30 pm Wagga Country Club
Wagga Murrumbidgee: Tuesday 6.30 pm Wagga RSL Club
Tuesday 6.45 pm Junee Ex-Services Club
Tuesday 6.30 pm Lockhart Ex-Services Club

Henty :
Wednesday 7 pm (7.30 DST) Henty Community Centre
Monday 6.30 pm Coolamon Sport and Rec Club