Mary Kay O’Rourke
President and CEO
Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville
How realistic is a world where everyone has a decent place to live? Monday's program focuses on the the lack of affordable housing in the Jacksonville community, and what one organization is doing to address this problem.
Taking on this subject is Mary Kay O’Rourke is the president and CEO of Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville, Inc. (HabiJax). She has led the organization since 2005 and has been associated with HabiJax since 1997. O’Rourke is a member of several community organizations including: Leadership Jacksonville, Northeast Florida Healthy Start Coalition, Jacksonville Women’s Network, and Northeast Florida Builders Association.
O'Rourke is a member of the U.S. Council of Habitat for Humanity and is director of Florida Habitat for Humanity. She received her B.A. in Sociology from Seton Hall University, attended Rutgers University for graduate studies in Social Work and completed Achieving Excellence in Community Development at Harvard Kennedy School Executive Education. In 2013, O’Rourke was recognized by the Jacksonville Business Journal with their Women of Influence award. She was also selected by the Florida Times Union as a 2015 EVE Awards finalist. She lives in Jacksonville with her husband of 43 years.
At the last meeting, the club was presented with a panel discussion regarding the present and future of our St. John’s River. The panel was expertly moderated by John Buchman, news anchor for Action News JAX. The panelists included Brian Taylor, CEO, JAXPORT, Lisa Rinaman, St. Johns Riverkeeper, Larry Harvey, Director of Operations for Save the Rodman Reservoir, Inc., and Vince Cameron, President of the International Longshoremen Association – Local 1408.
The St. Johns River was named one of 14 American Heritage Rivers in 1998 and ten years later also identified as one of America's Ten Most Endangered Rivers. At 310 miles long, it travels through or borders 12 counties in Florida, three of the state's largest and is critical to commercial, recreational and environmental interests in Jacksonville and neighboring counties. Three and half million people live within the various watersheds formed by the river.
Have you heard the exciting news, Nigeria has passed one year with no new cases of the wild polio virus! This is the longest the country has ever gone without a case of polio and a critical step on the path toward a polio-free Africa.
Plan to attend the August 15th Be a Gift to the World Training Seminar to hear the personal story of Ramesh Ferris, a 35 year old Polio Survivor who resides in Whitehorse, Yukon Canada.
He has shared Rotary’s End Polio Now message with countless heads of state and other world leaders including: Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Ban Ki Moon, Margaret Chan, Bill Gates, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, & Neil Young. Ramesh has traveled throughout Canada, India, USA, Puerto Rico, Australia, South Africa, France, Denmark, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Portugal, and Switzerland, all to convince more people to support the end of polio! He has spoken to delegates at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City and many Rotarians at various Zone Institutes and District Conferences.
The seminar will be held at the Thrasher-Horne Center in Orange Park starting at 8:00 am. The cost of the seminar per Rotarian is $35. Your registration includes a continental breakfast served from 7:00am-8:00am and a fabulous Italian meal for lunch. To register, just tell your club president you plan to attend.
I have personally heard Ramesh Ferris share his story and you will be impacted by his message. Thank you each for your continued service and I look forward to seeing you at the seminar!
Be sure to take a photo and post to our Facebook page along with a brief note about who, what, where and when. A book is at the registration table each Monday so be sure to sign in acknowledging you have accepted and completed the President's Challenge and mark the names off in the book.
Does your last name begin with an "C"? July is your month to bring a prospective member or just a friend to the a club meeting.
Our Membership Development Committee has launched its Bring A Friend to Rotary Campaign which encourages members to invite at least one friend to visit at least one club meeting or event over the next Rotary year. To keep that process organized and progressing, all members have been assigned to a designated month to bring a guest and that month is determined alphabetically by member's last name. August is for "C" people. (Of course, you can bring a guest any month.)
Click READ MORE below for your assignment month.
Low Income Housing
Mary Kay O'Rourke
Pres. & CEO, Habitat for Humanity Jacksonville
New Vision for Jacksonville
Mayor Lenny Curry
New Policing Strategy
Sheriff Mike Williams
U.S. Navy's P-8 Program
Captain Anthony Corapi, USN
Mayo Clinic Medical Research
Dr. Gianrico Farrugia
CEO, Mayo Clinic Jacksonville
Williams Visionary Scholars Comte
Holland & Knight Offices, Noon
Mike Biagini hosts Noon lunch
SAVE THE DATE
Saturday, September 19
4 pm – 6 pm
Getting to Know Rotarians
Carl and Rita Cannon
11457 Ft. George Rd., Ft. George Is.
MORE DETAILS TO COME