Formed in 1913 as the 75th Rotary club in the nation, Rotary Fort Worth has more than 250 members and ranks as one of the largest of the 35,000 Rotary clubs worldwide. While not the largest, it strives to be the most effective. The leadership of Rotary Fort Worth recognizes the need and importance for equity and inclusion within the business community and within Rotary. As Fort Worth continues to grow and become known as a great city to work and live, there is an understanding of the importance, strength and influence of small business that contributes to the economic well-being of the city. This includes woman and minority businesses. Rotary Fort Worth wants to be in the forefront of bringing businesses together for the greater good of all.
As part of the efforts to increase awareness of Rotary Fort Worth and what Rotary has to offer, the organization is taking a more active approach by reaching out to minority-owned businesses that may not be familiar with Rotary. To that end on April 30, Rotary will be hosting the inaugural Rotary Minority Business Awards at the Fort Worth Club. This is an opportunity to shine a light on some outstanding people and businesses and their successes, while recognizing the principles of Rotary ̶ the Four-Way Test, Object of Rotary, and the Avenues of Service express a commitment to service, fellowship, diversity, integrity and leadership. Rotary’s areas of focus are directed at their local and global impact. Their most successful and sustainable projects and activities tend to fall within the following areas: promoting peace, fighting disease, providing clean water, saving mothers and children, supporting education, growing local economies and protecting the environment. The finalists for the Minority Business Awards are Carpenter’s Cafe & Catering, Byrne Construction Services, Evolving Texas LP, POST L GROUP LLC and Tijerina Galvan Lawrence LLC. The winner will be announced during the event.
“The Rotary Minority Business Awards has been an eye-opening experience for me as a Rotarian, social worker and community advocate. I have found that we as Rotarians are here to listen and learn and evolve our traditions to support others in new ways. We live our motto of service above self and this awards process has truly deepened my understanding and love of being a Rotarian and a community advocate.” -Christie Eckler, LMSW, CFRE (executive director of National MS Society, adjunct professor at UTA’s School of Social Work and local consultant in Fort Worth on nonprofit efforts).
Rotary Fort Worth is not just recognizing inclusiveness from the outside, but from the inside as well beginning with the leadership — Rachel Marker as the immediate past president and fourth woman president, current president Carlo Capua, president-elect Courtney Lewis, who will be the first woman of color as president, and board member Shawn Snell to follow her as the sixth woman to be president — Rotary Fort Worth is positioned to embrace inclusion at top levels. Through connecting and caring, Rotary hopes to share with the minority-owned business community that they can be a resource and partner to success in Fort Worth.
Read the magazine for a special Q&A from Carlos Capua