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The First Rotary Club formed in South Australia is the Adelaide Club, which was formed in 1923.
The inaugural meeting of the Strathalbyn Rotary Club took place on July 20th, 1964. This was a meeting of commitment to a Club being formed and wasn't a dinner meeting. This is where the Provisional Club was formed. The extension, (Rotary jargon for forming a new Club), was being done under the auspices of the Victor Harbor Rotary Club. Our mother Club.
At the first Board meeting on the 23rd July 1964, the following Board was elected:- President Frank Hart, Director Club Service: Harry Nancarrow, Director Vocational Service: W. Ken Harris, Director Community Service: Ron Critchley, Director International Service: Andrew Nettlefold, Sergeant at Arms: Dene Pethick, Treasurer: Reginald Mattner, Secretary: Kinnish Martin.
The first dinner meeting of the Club took place on 18th August 1964 and was the first meeting with 100% attendance of 26 provisional Members. Strathalbyn Club was accepted into the fold of Rotary International on the 10th December 1964. This is when the Charter was drawn up and then forwarded from the USA to Strathalbyn, which culminated in its presentation to the Club by DG John McArthur on Saturday 13th February 1965.
Frank Hart, who was a past member of the Victor Harbor Rotary Club, had been transferred to the Commercial Bank in Strathalbyn, was the prime mover in getting the Club formed. Frank was the first and Charter President, having served two consecutive terms as President from 1964 and 1965. Frank had a good knowledge of Rotary and the first two years under his leadership was that of consolidation and fellowship.
This was a learning period for our Clubs development and of the affiliation with Rotary International. This formed the Club into a great cohesive unit with harmony and a will to achieve.
We have much to thank these pioneers for as we continue to grow and serve.