Our Presidents Speak: Kelly Hill, Waltham

Please tell us what factors helped you decide to join Rotary:
I decided to join Rotary for several reasons. The deciding factor for me was that I was witnessing all the good work the Waltham Rotarians were doing for the community and they were having fun doing it! I wanted to be a part of an organization that helps many of the non-profits in our area further their mission and goals.
Of your Club’s activities, what do you consider the one thing that best identifies what your Club is all about?
Our “Singing for the City” event, now in its 10th year, really defines our club. It is our biggest annual fundraiser. Almost every Waltham Rotarian helps to plan, donates something to the raffle, volunteers for set-up and clean-up, sells tickets or sings. Every year, we all look forward to this fundraiser.It draws members of the community in to compete for first prize and it involves some of our city officials in judging the best of the karaoke singers.  
What is your Club doing this year to attract new members?
We are hoping to establish more of a presence with our activities in all types of media, including the local paper and social media. We hope it will bring more attention to the work we are doing to a wider audience and attract more members. I am sure as the year progresses that we will consider other types of activities to attract new members.
Do you have any advice to offer others in the District about how best to achieve a successful fundraiser?
Our fundraisers would not be as successful as they are without a committee dedicated to getting the work done. Having a chair to coordinate and keep everyone on track is also a key factor. Engaging members to join a committee that may bring new ideas to the table is something we also strive to do. The camaraderie we share when getting together to plan each one of our fundraisers is a bonus. Planning and executing the fundraisers takes a lot of teamwork and effort beyond our regular duties, but we all look forward to making each event more successful than the last. We also hold regular-wrap up meetings to share what worked and what we can improve for the next year.
Do you have any innovative plans for Rotary related publicity during your Presidency?
We are already doing some things in the local paper and on Facebook, and I would like to increase that media attention and send out more press releases and pictures of what we are doing in the Waltham community. We may launch a “Rotary” show on our local cable channel, although we are still working out the details on that. The local cable channel always covers our big fundraising events on their news program and will promote them for us as well.
As President, what’s your biggest concern for the coming year?
My biggest concern is what I am doing to support our members. Attracting new members to Rotary is important for our club to grow, but also sustaining the membership we have now is important, too.
What’s the best book you’ve read in the past three years?
I am a big fiction fan and really like certain genres, but I have to say of the books I have read in the last few years my favorite was 11/22/1963 by Stephen King. I just loved it.
What’s your favorite quotation?
Although I am a huge William Shakespeare fan and love his work, this quote by Maya Angelou always speaks to me.
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” 
What’s your favorite restaurant in your community?
This has to be the hardest question of them all!  We have a lot of great restaurants in Waltham. City Streets on Waverley Oaks Road in Waltham is affectionately dubbed “HQ” because we can usually be found having one of our many committee meetings there. It features great food and is home of the award-winning “mac and cheese stuffed burger.”  Moody Street is home to some other favorites, including Charcoal Guido’s, Tempo, Bistro 781, Shopper’s Café and Joco’s. They are all locally owned and run and have outstanding menus with great staff. It is really hard for me to choose just one! 
What one thing would you most recommend as a “must see” or a “hidden treasure” for visitors to your community?
Waltham has many hidden treasures. If you like being outdoors, then walking the trails of Prospect Hill is a must-do. The view of the Boston skyline from the top of the hill is breathtaking. If you prefer indoor entertainment, then the Reagle Music Theater features many great performances during the summer months. Waltham is also hosts the Steampunk Festival on Mother’s Day weekend, which grows each year they bring it to the city. 
Kelly Hill, president of Waltham Rotary, may be reached at khill7@mah.harvard.edu.To learn more about Waltham Rotary, click here.