Six decades of Rotarian service

Six decades of Rotarian service

Rotary Club of Orbost membership continues to grow, with new inductees and one member in particular acknowledged at the club’s August 21 meeting, when Gordon Andrews celebrated 60 years as a Rotarian.

Last Wednesday, Glenn Carmichael was inducted into membership of the club, and thus into the worldwide fellowship of Rotary International.

Glenn moved to Orbost five years ago, having worked with the ABC in Melbourne as an electronics engineer, for two periods of employment of 14 years each. The club welcomes Glenn and is looking forward to his fellowship within the group and his leadership in service to the community through his involvement in Rotary.

Glenn is the third new member to be inducted into the Rotary Club of Orbost since July.


Not to make light of Glenn’s induction, the night continued with a special celebration for Gordon Andrews to commemorate his 60th anniversary of his induction into the Rotary Club of Orbost.

Gordon was inducted into membership of the club on August 1, 1959, the Andrews’ family having been part of the Orbost Rotary Club since its foundation in 1947.

Gordon’s father was a member for 11 years (1948-1959), and his brothers, Orme and Cleve, were foundation members of the club, Orme for 26 years and Cleve for 28 years.

Their brother, Royce, was a member for four years. In all, the family members have devoted 129 years to serving Rotary and the Orbost community, through the Rotary Club of Orbost.

Club president, Don Osborne, said Gordon’s membership of the club is quite remarkable.

“Especially as he still attends meetings regularly, participating actively with his experienced views, his visionary ideas and his inevitable ‘yarns’ enjoyed by club members,” Don said.

Gordon was president of the club on two occasions – 1967-68 and 1978-79, was the District Governor’s representative for Gippsland in 1969, and over his time occupied all positions in the club, including secretary and treasurer.

During his first 14 years in Rotary, Gordon achieved a 100 per cent attendance record, but his involvement in the club extended far beyond attending meetings.

“He was instrumental in initiating the mobile street stall with the popcorn and fairy floss machines, was actively involved in the Christmas Eve street festivals, in working bees such as firewood collection and selling raffle tickets,” Don said.

Gordon led a number of High Country four wheel drive tours and participated in the mock interview program and Overseas Youth Exchange Program, hosting the first international student, from Malaysia, in 1965. He initiated the annual Rotary fishing weekends at the Slips, Corringle, a most successful event for district and local fellowship, and for major fundraising. This event, in which Gordon was affectionately known as the ‘Sergeant Major’, ran for 29 years from 1990 until 2018.

In front of a crowd of interested club and family members, Gordon and his wife, Nina, took the stage of the Orbost Club last week, responding to questions about early life and work in Orbost, and of course their involvement in Rotary.

Nina described what it was like to be one of the first group of teachers appointed to Orbost North Primary School, the building of which had not been completed when they arrived.

The meeting to celebrate Gordon’s 60 years was highlighted by the attendance of District Governor, Adrian Froggatt, who presented Gordon with a certificate of achievement from the District and a framed letter from President of Rotary International, Mark Moloney, congratulating Gordon on this outstanding achievement.

“It was nice to see the District Governor there, and of course my wife and daughter,” Gordon said.

The celebration concluded with Gordon cutting an especially Rotary decorated sponge cake, large enough for all present to share, as an addition to the beautifully cooked main course of roast beef or pork, provided by the Orbost Club.

The Rotary Club of Orbost congratulates Gordon Andrews on his remarkable journey of 60 years as a Rotarian.

PICTURED: Rotary Club of Orbost celebrated Gordon Andrews’ 60 years as a Rotarian last week. Pictured with Gordon (centre) are club president, Don Osborne, Gordon’s wife, Nina, daughter, Angie Andrews, and Rotary District Governor (Rotary Club of Berwick), Adrian Froggatt.