Neighbors helping neighbors.
Another way of putting it would be “getting involved.”
The Charleston Ruritan Club is certainly no exception, especially this year as this people-friendly organization of civic leaders celebrates its 60th anniversary.
For this reason, let us get right to it.
Happy birthday, Charleston Ruritan Club!
To serve in such a community role for six decades is a remarkable achievement, one appropriately recognized recently by State Rep. Eric Watson, R-Cleveland, who presented club members with a Tennessee legislative resolution.
Too, the Charleston club has been recognized by its national president and director with a certificate which not only designates a special birthday but serves as a well-deserved recognition of accomplishment, achievement and powerful community influence.
It is also a salute to effort.
This is a trait shared by any Ruritan Club. Its members are community supporters who get involved because they believe in community, their schools and their children.
Most importantly, they simply believe in getting involved without a lot of fanfare, attribution or praise.
Many fine civic organizations carry torches bearing these same missions — Rotary, Kiwanis, Civitan, Lions, Sertoma and so very many others. We could not begin to name them all.
But a strength of Ruritan is that it caters to the needs of a site-specific area — an isolated community or a neighborhood. Bradley County has several, each with a love of people, of children, of schools, of churches and of neighbors. At the risk of leaving one out, we will not attempt to identify the local Ruritans by name.
But each one is just as critical to its own community.
The Charleston Ruritan Club is an excellent example.
Too often the Charleston community, and its residents, are left in the shadows of its much-bigger Highway 11 neighbor to the south. We obviously speak of Cleveland. But Charleston residents are just as loving, just as concerned about their futures and just as big a part of Bradley County as anywhere else, regardless of community, neighborhood or residential address.
When we think of Charleston Ruritan Club, we think of the residents of Charleston and we recognize them — and we thank them — for their day-to-day contributions to our collective Bradley County community.
We like the words used recently by Linda Melton, a civic-minded Bradley Countian who carries dual roles with Ruritan. She is secretary of Charleston Ruritan Club and she is district governor for the Cherokee Ruritan District. In Linda’s words, “My heart is in Ruritan. I believe that everyone should be a part of some community service.”
Extremely well said.
That community service doesn’t have to be Ruritan, but what a splendid organization for which to work because of its unique connection to community.
We likewise appreciate the candor of Charleston Ruritan Club President Chris Scoggins, who told our staff writer Joyanna Weber that Charleston Ruritan was formed six decades ago by predominantly a group of men who wanted a civic cause but who didn’t qualify for Rotary. So they formed a Ruritan chapter, one that now is dominated by Charleston women.
And that says plenty.
Because when you put a group of like-minded women on the same path, a difference will be made. Sprinkle in a few men and suddenly a formula for community success is being stirred.
This is the case with the Charleston Ruritan Club.
Its members are why projects get done.
We thank them.
We appreciate their leadership.
We wish them the happiest of birthdays!