Rotarian Named ‘Volunteer of the Year’ Personifies Club’s Motto

provided to The Santiva Chronicle

The principal motto of The Rotary Club is “Service Above Self” because it best conveys the philosophy of unselfish volunteer service. Island Rotarian Bill Harkey, and his wife Laurie, have exemplified that motto and were awarded the Sue Roscia Gray Volunteer of the Year earlier this month by The Sanibel-Captiva Chamber of Commerce.

Rotarian Bill Harkey, left, and his wife Laurie, are presented the Volunteer of the Year Award from Sanibel & Captiva Islands Chamber of Commerce Board President Calli Johnson. Photo provided

In 2002, after retiring from a three-decades-long career in the United States Army, Bill and Laurie began visiting Sanibel. By 2019, they had become extremely active within the community, as well as becoming full-time island residents. Laurie is a retired medical social worker and immediately became involved by primarily volunteering at “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge and supporting the Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife.

Bill became active in the Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Club and is vice president of the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society. They were both instrumental in the recovery efforts after Hurricane Ian, which made landfall on the island Sept. 28, 2022.

The Harkeys believe by giving both of their time and contributions now, they are able to see the direct impact they are having in the community for causes they believe in so strongly. The Rotary Club is proud Bill is living the “Service Above Self” motto.

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