First off, Happy Rotary New Year!  July 1st is the day that the new Rotary year kicks off and we have the changing of the guard for club officers.  At some point, hopefully in the not too distant future, we will have an actual Installation Dinner complete with the usual mirth and merriment, where we can make long speeches and wear silly hats.  For my first President’s Message, I want to focus on our outgoing President – Tony Parziale.  According to Tony, the goal of any club president should be to leave the club in better shape than they found it. 
Whether by this measure or any other, to say that Tony did a “good job” is a vast understatement (ok, maybe on the standard of audio quality for Zoom calls he fell a little short).  In his two years as President, Tony was a highly effective leader and earned the respect of the entire club.  He was on top of everything going on but did not micromanage.  He let people run with their ideas and provided the needed support.  At times, he had strong positions and worked hard to convince the board to support them.  For example, he was the driving force behind the club assuming the organizing role in FunFest which many on the Board were initially reluctant to do.  Yet, if he saw that his point of view was not going to carry the majority, he knew when to back off.  He never let spirited discussions turn into festering grudges.
 
And while Tony was very respectful of tradition, he did not allow the club to just “go through the motions” and “do what we did last year”.  For example, on the giving budget he instituted a very through discussion and procedure for selecting the charities that made the list.  It was a little painful and took a little longer than normal but it was worth it.  I am also very grateful for his support of my initiative to introduce the Bikes for the World project last year.  While he was an excellent delegator, he nonetheless was frequently “down in the trenches” (e.g. cleaning up after Funnel Cakes at the 4-H Fair).
 
Tony also made efforts to tie our club a little more into the workings of our District, as well as Rotary International (e.g. approving the implementation of ClubRunner).  He was part of an informal network of neighboring club presidents who met to improve communications and project ideas between clubs.
 
If you’ve read his President’s Messages over the last two years, you know that Tony is a lifelong student of management and personal development.   His messages tended to focus more on the inspirational rather than the transactional.  Mine will be mostly yelling mixed in with sarcasm and brilliant jokes that no one, including myself, will understand.
 
Tony strongly believes in the mission of Rotary.  Even though he will no longer be President, he remains on the Board as Immediate Past President.   I have no doubts that he will remain very actively involved in the Club. He will be a very tough act to follow but I am extremely fortunate that he will be around to provide advice and guidance.  I now need to turn my attention to our new President-Elect Andy Mozumdar to be able to provide him the same type of training that Tony provided me over the past year.
 
I am certain I speak for the entire Rotary Club of Montgomery/Rocky Hill when I say “Thank You Tony Parziale!”
 
Rotarically Yours,
Zoltan Nagy
President
Rotary Club of Montgomery/Rocky Hill
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