Raymond King – Paul Harris Fellow and Double Sapphire Pin

An Ashburton Rotarian has been honoured with a Paul Harris Fellowship Double Sapphire Pin for his efforts on behalf of the Ashburton Plains Rotary Club and the community.

At a recent meeting of the Rotary Club of Ashburton Plains, the club presented Ray King with a Paul Harris Fellowship, Double Sapphire Pin. Ray was first awarded a Paul Harris Fellowship back in 1994.

Paul Harris Fellowships are usually awarded to Rotarians to underline a long-term commitment to Rotary ideals. The award is named after the founder of Rotary, Paul Harris, and is one of the highest awards that can be given in Rotary. The double sapphire pin recognises the third Paul Harris Fellowship awarded to Mr King.

In the last 51 years Plains Rotary has used the Paul Harris Fellow Award to recognise those who have contributed to our Rotary Club or to The Rotary District to which we belong.   The Club has also presented Paul Harris Fellowships to non-Rotarians who have made an outstanding contribution to our community.

Ray joined Rotary on the 23rd June 1976 and two years later he was director of the Youth Committee.   He spent a year in club administration before becoming president for the 1982-83 year.

Following a year as president Ray the took on many other roles within the club:

Secretary, 1984-86

Newsletter Editor 1986-87 and Co-editor from 1988-91

Sergeant 1989-90 and the same year started serving on Rotary District Committees

Student exchange District Committee in 1990 for several years

Vocational Committee 1994 to 2000 serving as Chairperson for some of this time

District Governors Representative 1993-94

In May 1994 Ray was awarded a Paul Harris Fellowship by Plains Rotary.

Not wanting to rest on his laurels Ray then took a step up and was District Governor for Rotary District 9970 for the 2002-2003 Rotary year.   This role was responsible for all the clubs from Rangitata River to the top of the South Island including the West Coast.   The role involves at least 3 years on the districts main committee. During this time Ray was heavily involved in Rotary International’s Polio Plus Campaign.

At the end of his District Governorship he was presented a sapphire pin by the Rotary District in recognition of his continued service to the Rotary district 9970

Ray has not limited his community service to Rotary. He has been with the Ashburton District Youth Institute since it was set up 21 years ago supporting the activities and fundraising including the Malvina Major concert – a major undertaking. Ray continues each year organising and leading the Institute’s Kick Start Leadership course for year 8 primary school children.

In 2003 he became a Trustee of the Mid & South Canterbury Life Education Trust, serving 16 years as a trustee and being Chairperson for 9 of them.

From 2009 to 2012 he served a term on the National Board of Life Education and travelled to Wellington for meetings.  Ray was awarded a life membership last year.

Ray has also served a term on the Restorative Justice panel here in Ashburton.

Continuing with Rotary Ray hosted exchange students and organised our club’s speech contests.

Ray again did a year as Club President in 2016-17 and was sergeant last year.

In recognition of his continued community involvement and the 26 years of service following his first Paul Harris Fellowship Award, the Rotary Club of Ashburton Plains presented Ray with a Double Sapphire Pin.

President Steve Allen (Left) presenting Double Sapphire Pin to Ray King