This years district conference is set to be one of the most innovative and inspiring conferences that we have had in our history. Experience has given us an edge because for the last 95 years we have hosted annual conferences, and we now know what it takes to deliver a world-class experience.
The conference chairman is none other than Past District Membership Chairman James Mwangi who has definitive expertise in the hospitality industry and impeccable credentials in industrial design. With an incredible eye for detail he has spent a considerable amount of time studying Rotary district conferences, Rotary international conventions and other large scale events, and he has built a body of knowledge that is unmatched.
James’ conference team was carefully constituted to include Rotarians with the knowledge, skills and experience in planning major events, and their first task was to find out what kind of conference our members wanted. They carried out a district-wide survey and the findings indicated that Rotarians want high quality content, interactive and fun breakout sessions, multiple opportunities to connect, thrilling entertainment, and all of this at an affordable price.
All in all, we want to heartily celebrate the wonderful achievements that we have made in delivering an invigorating club experience for our members and creating lasting change in the communities that we serve. That is why the conference team has included the inaugural Sam Owori Awards, which is set to be the official opening of the conference.
It is a spectacular academy-award-style ceremony where we can grandly recognize and deeply thank those Rotarians and Rotaractors in our district who have elevated their game and contributed the most towards our priorities. The District Awards Chairman, Carole Kimutai, has reconstituted the district awards so that they encompasses more robust criteria and a transparent judging process, and for this we believe that it will be highly competitive.
We are honored to have Trustee Jennifer Jones from Windsor, Canada as the Rotary International President’s Personal Representative to our district conference. Not only is Jennifer my close friend and mentor, but she has also risen to some of the highest offices in Rotary including RI Vice President, and served as the convener to both the International Assembly in 2020 and the Rotary Coordinators Institute in 2014.
And as her star continues to rise, we are extremely fortunate to have her at our conference; one of the worlds most influential Rotarians who delivers inspiring content and show-stopping presentation and style.
A number of Rotarians from abroad have indicated that they would like to attend this conference. We know that when Rotarians jet into the country, they want hands-on participation in charity activities, and so we have prepared a number of pre-conference events to offer that type of opportunity. The Rotary Club of Ruiru is leading a Nairobi River clean-up event and the Rotary Club of Hurlingham has arranged for the painting of St. Dominic’s School.
On the assigned days local and international Rotarians will spend time extending service to the local community, but at the same time they will get a chance to rub shoulders, make those important connections and create life-long memories.
As the world embraces the elevation of Rotaract within Rotary International, our district has responded by organizing this as the first ever joint conference between Rotary and Rotaract in our 95 year history. I must admit that this is way overdue and working together has proven to offer a whole new type of arrangement that caters for a wider, though younger, demographic.
Together we’ve planned epic entertainment with bright, young and diverse stars, at the heart of Nairobi where the days are bubbling with social exuberance and the nights are alive with the sights and sounds of Africa’s eastern commercial hub. The brand new Sarit Expo Center offers a state-of-the-art conference facility and it is the first of its kind in this region.
Come to the conference and let us celebrate the positive change that we have created in district 9212 and let us have a good time as we make those life long connections, gain tangible knowledge that we can take back to our clubs, and have a thrilling time that we will remember forever. Find out more about the conference at at www.discon.rotary9212.org and register today.
Joe is the District Governor 2019-20 of Rotary District 9212 and the Rotary International Representative to UN Environment. He is also the CEO of The Collective, a digital advertising agency, the chairman of the Advertising Standards Board of Kenya, and a board member of WWF-Kenya.