Local recipients recognized with Rotary Paul Harris Fellow Award

On June 14th at Rotary Hall, the Southampton Rotary Club held its Paul Harris Award Ceremony, marking a significant milestone as the first award ceremony since the challenges posed by COVID-19. The event brought together community members and Rotarians to honor individuals who exemplify Rotary’s cherished motto, “Service Above Self.”

Paul Harris Fellow pin

The Paul Harris Fellow Award is one of the highest honours Rotary can bestow upon a person. Recipients are Rotarians and community professionals who are recognized for outstanding contributions, exemplifying the highest ideal in Rotary in placing “SERVICE ABOVE SELF.”



The Southampton Rotary Club recognized 11 outstanding citizens of Saugeen Shores for their contributions to the community and the world. Each recipient personified the spirit of selfless service, embodying Rotary’s core values.

One of the “Purposes” of Rotary Clubs is to support the Rotary Foundation. For every $1,000 US the Club donates to the Foundation they may present a Paul Harris Fellow Award. Southampton Rotary Club donated $1000 on behalf of each honoree, amounting to a remarkable contribution of $11,000 USD (approximately $15,000 CAD) to the Rotary Foundation Annual Fund.

The Paul Harris Award recipients included five local community members who have made a significant impact on Southampton and Saugeen Shores:

(L- R): Mary Halbert, Bryan Mombourquette, Mary Beth Huehn, Rene Lavoie, Kristen Watt, Christine John, Kevin Champion, Susan Macdonald and Alex Thornburn

· Christine John for her support and involvement in many local organizations.

· Kristen Watt for her leadership and advocacy especially during covid and her work in Zambia.

· Mary Beth Huehn and her partner Rene Lavoie our Southampton litter gatherers.

· Bryan Mombourquette for all the technical support he has given to Rotary and other organizations.

Additionally, six Southampton Rotarians were honored for their exemplary commitment to service:

· Kevin Champion otherwise known as “Mr. Fix it” and his passion for International Service.

· Mary Halbert for her enthusiasm for all things Rotary, and our float for the Christmas Parade.

· Susan Macdonald for her leadership as Club President for 2021/22.

· Alex Thornburn for having held many roles in the Club and our Champion Seller of draw tickets.

· June and John Van Bastelaar for their years of leadership in the Huron Shore Run

June and John Van Bastelaar received their Paul Harris Awards from President Jenny Amy at a recent Club meeting

Past President Jenny Amy remarked, “The honor bestowed upon these remarkable individuals at our Paul Harris Award Ceremony is a testament to the importance of recognizing local people who ‘do good’ in our community and the world. Through their acts of service, they embody the true spirit of Rotary, and their impact ripples far beyond our immediate surroundings. We salute their commitment, dedication, and compassion, and we are grateful for their contributions that create a brighter future for us all.”

This memorable evening was further enhanced by the culinary talents of the Elk and Finch, who catered a delightful meal for all attendees.

About Southampton Rotary:  Southampton Rotary has served this community for over 85 years. We are a group of friends, leaders, and problem-solvers who unite and take action to create lasting change in our community and around the world. We are people of action who have used our passion, energy, and skills to improve lives through service. From promoting literacy and peace to providing clean water, protecting the environment and improving health care, Rotary members are always working to better the world or as we like to say doing “DO-GOODERY!”