WOMEN IN ROTARY
Rotary provides women the opportunity to do extraordinary things. Working together with like-minded women and men they expand and build on existing strengths with the benefits of diversity to improve the lives of individuals and communities.
Women have always had an influence in Rotary right from the contribution of Jean Thompson, Rotary's Founder Paul Harris's wife, who is often stated as being "the power behind the Rotary 'throne' ".
The 1989 Council on Legislation vote to admit women into Rotary clubs worldwide remains a watershed moment in the history of Rotary. The vote followed the decades-long efforts of men and women from all over the Rotary world to allow the admission of women into Rotary clubs, and several close votes at previous Council meetings. The response to the decision was overwhelming: By June 1990, the number of female Rotarians had skyrocketed to over 20,000. By July 2016, the number of women worldwide had surpassed 250,000.
The work that Rotary women throughout the world do publicly and behind the scenes is amazing. Women are both the "movers and shakers" in our clubs but also very well-represented in leadership positions within clubs, districts, and beyond.