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RLI International Newsletter

April 2015
The Rotary Leadership Institute (RLI) is a multi-district, grassroots leadership development program of member districts organized into regional divisions throughout the world. It is not an official program of Rotary International and is not under its control. The RLI seeks to have Rotary Clubs in member districts identify those Rotarians who seem to have the POTENTIAL for future club leadership (not necessarily as club presidents) and provide those so identified with a quality education in Rotary knowledge and leadership skills for voluntary organizations.

Odd and Ends About RLI

RLI is a decentralized organization now with 81 Divisions, ranging in size from one district to 27 districts. The purpose of divisions is to enable Rotarians from different countries, districts and cultures to tailor their activities in accordance with local needs. The function of the International RLI (International officers and Regional Chairs/Co-Chairs) is to provide the resources and support for successful programs. It provides a recommended curriculum developed by a large curriculum committee with requested input from all divisions, provides faculty training for new divisions, provides for an annual convention breakfast and facilitates breakfasts or other events at Rotary Institutes, facilitates translations, suggests policies and "best practices", maintains two web sites, etc. The Intl. RLI does not run courses.

ALL RLI courses are provided by the Division leadership who also hold division meetings, etc. The recommended curriculum is fairly general and division faculty members can easily adapt it to local conditions. The only strong policy of the International RLI is that the courses be interactive without lecturing. There is no need for a division to substantially revise curriculum outlines because the discussion leaders can easily adapt it in their courses.

Trustee Vice-Chair and PRIVP Michael McGovern, a former chair of our largest division, has said, "RLI has the ability to innovate and to adapt to local cultures and local needs. It has been able to be both international and regional and it has served both RLI and Rotary Clubs well."


RLI at the Sao Paulo Convention

RLI members are looking forward to the Annual R.I. Convention to be held at Sao Paulo, Brazil on June 6-9, 2015. The center of RLI activity will be at the Convention Exhibit Booth #142. RLI leaders will be present at that Booth during the entire Convention period. All are welcome to visit the Booth and to talk with RLI officers about the RLI program, make suggestions and for prospective member districts to discuss possible membership. The Chair of the Exhibit Booth Committee is RLI International Executive Director Michael Rabasca and the Vice-Chair is RLIInternational Vice-Chair for Training, Frank Wargo. A number of other officers will also be present at the Booth. Separate meetings may be arranged with international RLI officers by visiting the booth. It is also expected that the RLI Annual Report edited by PDG Subhash Saraf of Pune, India, will be available at the booth.

Because of the failure to find a satisfactory location at reasonable expense, the Annual Convention Breakfast has been canceled for the first time in the past 13 plus years. We expect to resume the RLI Annual Convention Breakfasts at the Seoul Convention.

RLI Forms Online Courses Pilot Program Committee

In order to begin implanting the excellent report on Online Courses for RLI by a committee chaired by PDG Chris Offer of British Columbia, Canada, a pilot program committee will begin developing some pilot online courses in different parts of the world. Chair of the Committee is PDG Yoshihiro Sekiba of Japan, the Vice-Chair is PDG Beryl Robinson of New Zealand and other members are Jeffrey Weinrach and Phil Abraham, USA. PDG Tamton Mustapha, International RLI Vice-Chair will serve as international liaison to the committee. A few more committee members from different parts of the world are expected to be appointed.

Curriculum Revisions in Process

The process for the triennial revision of the Recommended RLI Curriculum is well underway based on the studies of the Annual Curriculum Committee meeting in Orlando, Florida, USA at the end of January. The curriculum is fully reviewed every three years and the coming curriculum for the basic RLI three Part Courses is intended for use during the Rotary years 2015-18. Annual updates are also sent to all RLI Divisions as needed for changes by R.I and the Foundation or the Council on Legislation. The change from a one year to a three years full review was necessitated to enable translators to only provide translations every three years. All Divisions should be using the 2012-15 curriculum until July 1. The Editor for the Curriculum Committee is PDG Ed King and the Chair of the Committee meeting was PDG Randy Wawiszer.

Titles for RLI Regional Vice-Chairs Have Been Changed

In order to more accurately reflect the important work of the 15 RLI Regional Vice-Chairs and the Assistant Regional Vice-Chairs, the titles have been changed to "Regional Chair" and "Regional Co-Chair" effective immediately. The role of these international RLI officers is to provide resources and support to the divisions in their regions, to inform the International RLI officers of the status of those divisions and to arrange for RLI events at Rotary Institutes and other important events. The list of these officers is part of these monthly eBulletins and is posted on the main RLI web site. Regional Chairs serve for renewable 3 year terms and the Regional Co-Chairs serve during the terms of the Regional Chairs.

New Regional Co-Chair for Europe is Announced

PDG Alain van de Poel of Belgium has been appointed a Regional Co-Chair for Europe. He is from District 2170, Zone 18 and will assist Regional Chair Serge Gouteyron, PRIVP. He also joins Regional Co-Chair Jacques di Costanzo of France, PRID, who will succeed Chair Serge on July 1 when Serge has requested to be replaced after serving since 2007. The European Region for the purpose of these Regional officers consists of Zones 11, 12, 13, 14, 17, 18 and 19. Another Regional Co-Chair will be appointed soon.

RLI Congratulates Incoming RI Board Officers

R.I. President-Elect K.R. Ravindran has announced the appointment of Director Greg Podd of Colorado, USA, to be R.I. Vice-President in 2015-16. He is the RLI Intl. Regional Chair for America West.

Director Per Hoyen of Denmark will serve as R.I. Treasurer and Director Safak Alpay of Turkey will serve as Chair of the Board's Executive Committee. Both Directors are members of the RLI Intl. Senior Leaders Advisory Board. Director Alpay served on the Faculty Orientation Team for the first faculty of the Turkey Division.

In addition to the above Directors, Director Guiller Tumangan of the Philippines will Chair the Board's Administration Committee and Director Julia Phelps of Massachusetts USA will Chair the Board's Program Committee. Director Robert Hall of Georgia USA will also serve on the Board's Executive Committee. All are also members of the RLI Intl. Senior Leaders Advisory Committee. Director Guiller will also be liaison to the Foundation Board of Trustees.

RLI Promotional Video Has Been Prepared by PDG Chris Offer

A very professional video for District 5040 has been prepared by Past RLI Regional Chair Chris Offer of British Columbia, Canada. Some other districts have already planned to duplicate it for their districts. It may be found on https://vimeo.com/116091126. Chris may be contacted at chrisoffer@live.ca. 604-940-9365

A Unique Site for a RLI Course Session!!!

The Royal Caribbean Independence of the Seas, a noted cruise ship, will be the site of RLI courses run by the RLI Sunshine Division during December 10-14, 2015. The four day cruise will depart from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to Cozumel, Mexico. All 3 Parts of the RLI Basic Curriculum will be offered as well as a Graduate program on The Rotary Foundation. Reservations are due very soon. Rotarians from other divisions are welcome to join the cruise. If interested, contact PDG Randy Rawiszer, Chair of the Sunshine Division at rotarytailor@aol.com or 407-474-1755 as soon as possible. Special low fares will be held only to April 13.

Personnel Changes

The following are some of the "end of the year" changes in division chairs:

Rocky Mountain Division Chair Mike Forney has announced that he will step down as Chair on July 1 to become a Rotary Public Image Coordinator for 12 districts in Zone 27. He will be succeeded by District 5440 Governor Phil Murphy of Fort Collins, Colorado USA. We thank PDG Mike Forney for a truly outstanding job as the Division Chair and welcome Phil Murphy who has been a very active discussion leader and program leader for RLI.

PDG K.S. Pillai has announced his resignation as Chair of the South India/Sri Lanka Division. He will be succeeded by PDG N. Govindaraj of District 2981 (as of a July split of his district). We thank PDG Pillai for his distinguished service to RLI over many years and welcome PDG Govindaraj who is fully qualified for the new position.

PDG Ranjan Dhingra has announced that he will step down as Chair of the Northern India Division. He will be replaced by PDG Atul Dev of District 3011 (as of July 1 when District 3010 will be split). PDG Atul is also a former Chair of that Division. We thank PDG Ranjan for his devoted service and welcome back PDG Atul.

Around the RLI World

PDG Cathy Roth, Intl. Regional RLI Chair for ANZO (Australia, New Zealand and Oceania) wrote a great message about RLI in the Australia National Membership Newsletter.

The Heartland USA Division held a successful course on March 21 in Lincoln, Nebraska and welcomed participants from newly joined District 6000. Nicolette "Nicki" Klein is Chair of the Division. Another course has been scheduled for Des Moines, Iowa in District 6000.

Rotarians from Luanshya, Zambia, Polokwane, Vereeniging and Mossel Bay were part of RLI courses at Cape Town, South Africa. South Africa Division Chair Beth Thomas reported that the courses also gave participants great opportunities to network and build new relationships. Attendees from District 9400 will participate in an annual graduation ceremony at the District Conference in June. Because Chair Beth's report was so comprehensive and well done, we will try to post it in its entirety on rlifiles.com There were many unique features of the courses that may be of interest to all divisions.

The Sunshine Division is having a busy Rotary year. To date almost 900 Rotarians have attended RLI events and there are six more events to go. 15 Rotarians will attend faculty training in April. Dozens more discussion leaders have been added from all member districts. The RLI Annual Meeting for the Sunshine Division will be held on July 11-12 at the Hilton Garden Inn in Orlando, Florida.

The Sunshine Division also provides trained facilitators for the Florida PETS. RLI Division Chair Randy also serves as Chair of the Florida PETS. While PETS is obviously totally separate from RLI the discussion leaders become more effective at PETS because of their prior training and experience with RLI.

Philippines RLI will hold courses on April 1 in Manila, hosted by the Rotary Club of Ermita, Manila.

The RLI Discussion Group on Rotary.org continues to attract more participants and more discussion topics. As of this writing 376 Rotarians are members of the Group that is open to all Rotarians. Additional Rotarians may join the group known as RotaryLeadershipInstitute/RLI through My Rotary on the rotary.org site.


“Having leadership skills does not alone assure good Rotary leadership. An effective Rotary leader must ALSO have Rotary knowledge, perspective about where Rotary has been, where it is now and a vision of what Rotary can be.”