Just around noon, members of the Rotary Club file into the Giovanni's in downtown Ironton for another weekly gathering.

With a "click" on the attendance light board each time a member marks their entrance, the room fills with a diverse collection of businessmen and women, university staff and local tradesmen.

Among them, Nathan Davis, incoming Ironton Rotary Club president, chats with fellow members.

Davis, a branch manager for Arrick's Propane in Ironton, says he became a Rotary member in 2016 after his company encouraged its leaders to get involved in the community.

After researching and visiting a few of the community's Rotary Club meetings, he said he knew he'd found his match after participating in the organization's annual dictionary donation for local students. Each year, he says, each Lawrence County third-grade student receives his or her own dictionary, while all fifth-grade students receive a thesaurus.

"The first time I went to pass [the dictionaries] out, I saw the looks on their faces when they got their own books and got to write their names in them," he says. "I knew that was an organization I wanted to be a part of."

On June 25, Davis will be inaugurated as the local organization's president as it enters its centennial year.

"That's 100 years of service in Lawrence County and the Ironton community," he says. "We're trying to raise money to do service projects where we donate 100 blankets to the mission or 100 backpacks or 100 Christmas gifts. We're trying to not only celebrate the 100 years, but celebrate with the community."

The club, he says, is making positive impacts at home and abroad.

"The Ironton Rotary Club has a service project in Guatemala to help bring clean water to villages with contaminated water or where [residents] have to walk miles and miles to get clean water," Davis says.

Those interested in joining the Ironton Rotary Club should contact the chapter via Facebook or through their website, Davis says. Visitors are always welcome to attend the Ironton Rotary Club's meetings, which take place on the first, second and fourth Wednesdays of each month.

"It's for anybody that has a willingness to serve - the organization's motto is, 'Service above self,'" Davis adds. "I always tell people all it takes to do good in the world is an open mind and a willing heart."


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