President Warner Calls an Audible

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Tuscaloosa Rotary 2011-2012 President Warner JohnsonGreg McElroy would be proud. Due to an emergency, last week’s speaker District Governor Martin Uptain called to cancel his appearance at the club— at 11:20! It was the Program’s equivalent of an all-out blitz. But President Warner Johnson kept his cool. He took his time ringing the bell, and proceeded with an informal meeting. There were a number of announcements, and even an ad hoc program on Industrial Development. Among the results of the plays called at the line:

Rotaract of Tuscaloosa will host a “Pink Out” in support of breast cancer awareness on October 19. The event will be held at the Red Shed bar in Tuscaloosa from 7-10 p.m. There will be a live band and appetizers and drink specials. All proceeds will go to Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Come out and join us, and of course be sure to wear pink!

Rotarian John Duckworth reported on an excellent opportunity to help The Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind (AIDB). AIDB is a finalist for a $25,000 Community Stars award from Mercedes-Benz. For over 150 years, the Institute has provided comprehensive education and service programs for children and adults who are deaf, blind and multidisabled, as well as for their families. Rotarians are encouraged to vote (once a day, every day!) via Facebook: For questions or more information call 265-761-43470 or email

Rotarian Margaret King reported on the availability of a new Rotary Global  Scholars Grant. The grants are “designed to create a global cadre of highly trained scholars working toward solutions for the world’s most pressing humanitarian needs.” The awards are for international graduate studies at an accredited institution. They are open to scholars at all stages of post-graduate learning as well as graduating seniors, with no age or gender restrictions. The grant provides a minimum of $30,000 for one year in support of study relevant to one or more of the following Rotary International focus areas:  Peace and conflict prevention and resolution; disease prevention and treatment; water and sanitation; maternal and child health; basic education and literacy; and economic and community development. All proposals must include plans for sustainability, and must be sponsored by Rotary clubs in both the sending and receiving locations.  The Rotary Club of Tuscaloosa is a potential sponsor, and welcomes applications from candidates who live or study in our district (6860). Applicants must be identified by October 31 and initial proposals submitted by early November. Applicants may not be Rotarians, employees of a Rotary organization, or a relative of a Rotarian. For further information, contact Dr. Margaret King, Scholarship Chair for The Rotary Club of Tuscaloosa, at or 205-394-5653 or Dr. Gregory Jeane, Future Vision Coordinator for Rotary International District 6860, at

Finally, Rotarian Dara Longgrear reported briefly on developments at the Industrial Development Authority. IDA has hosted a number of clients of late, and is pleased to report that recovery from the April tornado has been quick. Damage from the storm to the heart of Tuscaloosa industry was minimal, though unemployment is up in its wake, and the removal of debris—enough to fill Bryant-Denny stadium five times!—has taken some time.

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