My FIRST Rotary Meeting: “The Greater West Chester Sunrise Rotary Club”

From the ESMS Intern’s Desk By Jen Gallo

I attended my first Greater West Chester Sunrise Rotary Club meeting at 7am on Wednesday, June 29th at the Centerstone West Chester Inn.  Everyone was very welcoming and I was fortunate enough to meet a lot of interesting people!

We sat at a table with John, whose first day of retirement was the following day.  It was an eye opening experience sitting at a table with someone who was ending their career, while Caroline and I are just about to begin ours.

Also at our table was Gwenn, a retired district justice, who used to work on cases involving many West Chester University students.  She began a program with the concept of Restorative Justice called Young Adult Community Conferencing (YACC).  This program allows offenders to come face to face with those who were victimized and allows them to understand how their actions have impacted others.  The program allows offenders and victims to make amends as the victim sees how their mistakes have affected the community.  Many offenders are able to pay off their fines through community service while becoming a more productive citizen.  YACC has allowed many students to make up for their mistakes by making amends and giving back, rather than having a record that follows them through life.  Gwenn has made an extremely large impact on the West Chester community and I was very happy she shared her accomplishments with me!

Another member of the club, Roger, recently had brain surgery and the sense of community was easily felt as everyone wished him a safe and speedy recovery throughout the meeting.

We were treated to a delicious breakfast as we listened to the guest speaker, Ron Godol, talk about his diamond importing business and local store located right in West Chester.  He gave us his back story on how he got involved in the diamond industry and how recent regulations have impacted importers.  He started his career in Israel, with an engineering degree and working in the Air Force.  He later came to America to work with is cousin’s diamond business and traveled all around the United States.  A few months later he was offered a job in the diamond importing industry and has been very successful ever since!  He now owns BIG Diamond Importers and Fine Jewelry in West Chester.

I had a great time and learned a lot while talking to some very interesting people!

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Jen Gallo

Published by: Jen Gallo

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