Courtney Usborne was awarded the 2019-2020 Rotary Club of St. Catharines Lakeshore Paul Harris by Past President Eric Jones. Courtney received the award in recognition of her contributions to the Club and Community during that Rotary year. A full copy of Eric's presentation speech is provided in the "Read More" section of this posting.
Every Paul Harris Award is Special. Each Paul Harris recipient is special. But in this Club, there is one annual Paul Harris Award that has always risen above all others.
Since I joined Rotary some thirty odd years ago, each year the President and Board has had the honour of recognizing one of our members that has risen above and beyond in their service to the Club and the Community. This Paul Harris is requested and awarded by the Club itself as a symbol of recognition from one’s own peers – the members of the Rotary Club of St. Catharines Lakeshore. It is a thank you for a job well-done and a closely guarded secret until the date of presentation.
Normally, the award is made at our annual President’s Thank You Bash. With the on-going pandemic, and despite the valiant efforts of Randi, Joy and Bob in creating a sign and planting flamingoes all over my front yard, this event did not occur for 2019-2020. Nor did that presentation. Bruce and I had hoped that the pandemic would allow an in-person event in keeping with the stature of the award but that does not appear to be in the cards. And I can only keep a secret so long, so here goes.
The recipient of the 2019-2020 Rotary Club of St. Catharines Lakeshore Paul Harris Award is Courtney Usborne.
Courtney comes from a “Rotary Family”, as both her mother Susan and father Tony are Rotarians and members of the Bridgenorth Ennismore Lakefield (B.E.L) Rotary Club. Courtney had been involved in many Rotary activities as a member of that club serving on the Foundation Committee and sending out the weekly minutes.
Internationally, Courtney has been an Exchange Student. Members will also remember Courtney’s audiovisual presentation covering her May 2019 one week trip to Nepal to assist the country in rebuilding after the devastating April 25, 2015 earthquake.
She has brought that joy of Rotary to our Club, taking on every task asked of her and more. Who can now visualize our Club without our monthly newsletter? Even more important, Courtney has agreed to be our incoming President-elect for 2021-2022 and has brought a breath of fresh air to the Club.
Along with mother Susan, father Tony, brother Michael, husband Darcy and children Emmalena and Rhyland, all here with us tonight virtually, it is my privilege to present Courtney with this 2019-2020 Paul Harris Award on behalf of myself, the Board and the Club.