Our History

In the beginning, there was one Rotary club in Newark. And then there were two.

A years-long dream of having a second Rotary club in Newark was realized on Feb. 18, 1999, when the Newark Morning Rotary Club received its charter from Rotary International, joining more than 30,000 other Rotary clubs in the world.

Sponsored by the Newark (evening) Rotary Club, our Morning club quickly found its niche in the Newark community. For ten years we had convened for breakfast and fellowship on Thursday mornings at the Blue and Gold Club on the University of Delaware campus. Starting on July 1, 2009, we have been breaking bread at the Courtyard by Marriott.

The 33 charter members, under the leadership of the first president Ray Civatte, quickly established projects, many of which are still active and vital in our neighborhood. The members committed to the mantra of “not being just a check-writing club,” and got active with hands-on activities. Members have raked leaves for elderly, picked up highway trash, landscaped the Emmaus House, mentored in the schools and worked at Easter Seals’ Camp Fairlee Manor. We shopped for new clothes, coats and shoes for needy school children, collected shoes for hurricane victims and sweaters for local needy, packed shoeboxes full of goodies for soldiers, wrapped gifts for UNICEF, helped coordinate marching units in the Memorial Day parade and distributed dictionaries to our third graders. Our schedule is always busy.

But when needed, we were willing to write checks to support local families in need, Shoes That Fit, Iron Hill Museum, Wilmington and Western Railroad, Big Brother Big Sisters, Dope Help project, Val Nardo’s Family Fund, and many more. More than $50,000 went to camperships for Easter Seals clients to attend summer camp at Camp Fairlee.

Nearly $1,000,000 has been raised through sale of ads in the annual Report to the Community, the club’s main annual fund-raiser, with 100% of profits going directly to service projects. This enabled us to present nearly 30 scholarships to James H. Groves Adult High School grads, at a total of nearly $60,000, vocational grants totaling $6,000, nearly $40,000 in new clothes for local children, and numerous other projects.

In addition the members also support the Rotary Foundation’s international efforts in health and literacy projects, including efforts to eradicate polio from the earth. These dollars come directly from members themselves. We are one of a few clubs that is 100% Paul Harris Sustaining members with every member contributing a minimum of $100 to The Rotary Foundation each year.

Years ago the club’s founders were told, “There is no room for another service organization in Newark.” We proved the nay-sayers wrong. The Newark Morning Rotary Club is proud to be part of the Newark community. We are hoping to be here for many more to come.

Honor Roll of Presidents

1999 Ray Civatte
1999-2000 Donna Friswell
2000-2001 Phil Hickman
2001-2002 Wayne Nelson
2002-2003 Shawn Klapinsky
2003-2004 Dr. Jim Kent
2004-2005 Robert Foard
2005-2006 Doug Warren
2006-2007 Fiona Tresolini
2007-2008 Eric Cannon
2008-2009 Mike Laur
2009-2010 David Spisak
2010-2011 Clinton Tymes
2011-2012 Fred Dawson
2012-2013 Mary Konwinski
2013-2014 Charlie Brown
2014-2015 Paul Keely
2015-2016 Bill Sullivan
2016-2017 Robin Broomall
2017-2018 Joshua Martin
2018-2019 Don Newcomb
2019-2020 Evelyn Hayes
2020-2021 Dennis Greenhouse
2021-2022 Joyce Henderson
2022-2023 Clinton Tymes
2023-2024 Stewart Lee
2024-2025 Lynn May