Rotary International is a world wide organization of more than 1.2 million members spread across 166 countries.  Rotarians are a very diverse group (of ages, genders, races, religions, professions and nationalities) dedicated to Fellowship, Community Service, International Understanding, and Professional Development.  Rotarians help to further goodwill and peace in the community and in the world.  Rotary International recently celebrated the 100th anniversary of its founding by Paul Harris in Chicago, IL in February of 1905.    



Rotary International divides the globe into some 560 territories or "Districts."  Washington, DC and central Maryland are in District 7620.  Each club has full autonomy and the local Districts are charged with motivating club presidents and officers and encouraging and supporting Rotary clubs in their many activities.  An annual District Conference takes place each Spring allowing clubs to interact with each other and share support and enthusiasm.


Rotary clubs are divided into four "Avenues of Service"

  • Club Service
  • Community Service
  • Vocational Service
  • International Service

Each of which allows club members to be involved on a level according to their interests, time constraints and energy level.



Is This Just Another Kind of "Networking or Business Referral Club" ?


No!  Rotary is the world's largest service club and is not designed as a business referral network.  As in life, people do business with other people who they know and they trust, but the purposes of Rotary and its members are civic activities, fellowship and community and international service.


What About My Spouse/Friend/Significant Other and Children?


Rotary, especially this club, is a very inclusive organization and family-friendly.  All are welcome and family activities are common. The metro Bethesda Rotary Club encourages it's members to bring friends to meetings and social events.