Rotary of Canton, Illinois

“Service Above Self”

Welcome to the Canton, Illinois club of Rotary International. Our meetings are Wednesdays at noon at the Graham Hospital in Canton.  2019 was our 100th Anniversary!

2022–2023 Officers:

President – Curt Oldfield
Vice President – (vacant)
President Elect – (vacant)
Secretary – Kim Bunner
Treasurer – Kyle Cook
Past President –  (vacant)
Mitch Williams
Todd Fletcher

Canton Rotary By-Laws


Rotary International is the world’s first service club organization, with more than 1.2 million members in 133,000 clubs worldwide.  Rotary Club members are volunteers who work locally, regionally, and internationally to combat hunger, improve health and sanitation, provide education and job training, promote peace, and eradicate polio under the motto Service Above Self.

Rotarians provide humanitarian service, encourage high ethical standards in all vocations, and help build goodwill and peace to the world.

The Four-Way-Test

The test, which has been translated into more that 100 languages, asks the following questions:

1. Is it the TRUTH?
2. Is it FAIR to all concerned?
4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?


The mission of Rotary International is to provide service to others, promote integrity, and advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through its fellowship of business, professionals, and community leaders.


On October 10, 1919, Charter Night was held and the 551st Rotary Club was officially inaugurated.   The idea was given to Canton when Albert Triebel of the Peoria Club wrote to W.R. Sebree in the summer of 1919.  Twenty charter members were present the night the charter was presented by the then district governor, James Craig of Chicago.  T.L. Greer was the first president, Dr. J.E. Bradley was its first vice-president, and Mr. Sebree was the first secretary.

The club soon began to expand after its founding.  Dr. E.P. Coleman was the first new member coming into the club in December 1919, and being a member continuously since that time.  William H. Parlin was the club’s first honorary member.  Ketric Klingman has been the only Canton Rotarian to serve as district governor during the term 1960-61.  The club was soon called to help carry the Rotary idea to other places.  Canton has two “offspring” clubs to its credit:  Pekin and Farmington.

Throughout the years, the club has undertaken many projects. Present projects, include participation in the Canton Friendship Festival, Salvation Army bell ringing, international book exchange, sponsorship of the Canton travelogue series, donation of scholarships to deserving students at Graham Hospital School of Nursing, foreign exchange student program, and the development of a Career Days for Canton youth.


The first Rotary Club meeting was held in Chicago on the evening of February 23, 1905, with Paul Harris, lawyer; Silvester Schiele, coal dealer; Gustavus Loehr, mining engineer; and Hiaram E. Shorey, merchant tailor.  Rotary International was founded in 1910 with sixteen clubs.  The name “Rotary” was selected to symbolize the original plan of meeting in places of its members in rotation.  The wheel was first used by the Chicago club in 1905.  The 1912 convention recognized that the smooth tire must have cogs to become the modern age of power.  Later, it was seen that a place for a key must be made in the hub to harness it to its shaft if it was to accomplish real work in Rotary service.

In January 1, 1974, there were 15,865 rotary clubs and an estimated 744,500 Rotarians in 150 countries and geographical regions.