Finger Lakes Community College recently hosted 90 Rotary members and guests, including Rotarians from six of the seven continents of the world, for the annual Rotary Fellowship Brunch held in conjunction with the Rotary District 7120 Governor Elect Hospitality Program.

Fourteen incoming Rotary governor-elects from Australia, India, England, Austria, Kenya, Colombia and Paraguay visited the Rochester/Finger Lakes area for eight days before moving on to their mandated training conference in San Diego.

This year marked the 48th year that District 7120 Rotarians have welcomed their international counterparts for a week of Rotary fellowship. They visited to learn about the local area and discuss common issues of concern with local Rotarians.

Robert Nye, FLCC president and Canandaigua Rotarian, briefly spoke to the group and welcomed them to the college. District governor nominee Mike Slovak, of Bath Rotary Club, served as master of ceremonies for the event.

David Hannan, of Newark Rotary Club, discussed the importance of the work Rotary does in serving others both locally and internationally. Ron Little, president of Brighton Rotary Club, also made welcoming comments. Brighton Rotary Club initiated the hosting program in 1969.

District Gov. Tom Rogers, of Canandaigua Rotary Club, added his greetings to the group. Rogers; Gov.-elect Don Milton, of Penfield Rotary Club; and Little exchanged Rotary banners and pins with each of the guests.

The visiting governor-elects each spoke concerning their goals for the coming year of Rotary leadership. They thanked their local Rotary hosts for the opportunity to spend a week in their homes and the local Rotary clubs for supporting the program. Gov.-elect Cheryl Law, of England, said she wanted to personally thank everyone for the warm reception she has experienced and the great opportunity to meet Rotarians from around the world in a relaxed and casual format.

Several speakers emphasized of the need for all Rotarians to support the Rotary Foundation, which provides funding resources for many service projects supported by Rotary. Gov.-elect Ruchir Jani, of India, said that Rotarians in his district have raised over $700,000 this past year to support the Rotary Foundation.

Most of the visiting governor-elects were accompanied by their spouses. Rashida Hussain, wife of Gov.-elect Zamin Hussain from India, made a special presentation to several local Rotarian hosts and spouses. Each were given a decorative necklace, and Rashida Hussain placed a traditional bindi, or red dot, on their foreheads.

Milton told the international guests that he was looking forward to joining them in San Diego for their training conference.

Victor-Farmington Rotarian Dave Luitweiler, chairman for the Governor Elect Hospitality Program, made closing comments and thanked everyone for their participation. He pointed out that the contacts made through this program have often resulted in future Rotary service projects around the world.