Palmer named 2015 Paul Harris Fellow

Published 8:43 am Wednesday, February 25, 2015

A reunion of sorts took place at Bogalusa Country Club Tuesday as the facility hosted the regular weekly meeting of the Rotary Club of Bogalusa. Former Rotary members — all previous recipients of the Paul Harris recognition — packed the hall as the club honored its 2015 awardee, the Rev. R.L. Palmer.

“Each year we try to recognize someone worthy,” said Rotary member Merlin Duke, who pointed out last year’s recipient, Dr. Gerald Berensen, as well as several other past winners in the audience.

In accepting the recognition, which is named after the founder of Rotary International, Palmer said, “I’m thankful to all of you.”

He named two Rotary Club members in particular, Marilyn Crews, who brought him into the fold, and Duke, who acted as a sort of mentor for Palmer, and said he was happy to discover that his initial impression of the Rotary Club of Bogalusa as a club for “stodgy old white men” was inaccurate.

Palmer received a certificate and medal as part of the recognition. Typically, the Paul Harris recognition is bestowed upon those who have contributed at least $1,000 to various Rotary funds, and the Rotary Club of Bogalusa donates in the name of the selected individual.

After the recognition, former winners along with the 2015 honoree posed for a group photo shared a cake made in honor of the occasion.

Prior to the recognition, the Rotary Club of Bogalusa finally named its top officers for the upcoming year, which begins on July 1. Duke will serve as president, and the Rev. Bill Moon will serve as president elect while Ellis Sampson will be vice president.

The previously-selected president and vice president, Bob Belknap and Marsha Adams, were unable to accept the positions.