Foundation Awards:  President Stephen Baggett, Jr. presented the following members (pictured from left to right) with their respective Paul Harris Fellow awards:
Carol Harley - PHF +1
Ruple Harley, III - PHF +1
Bea Walker - PHF
Jerry Stevens - PHF +1
Bill Thomason - PHF +3
Jack Walker - PHF


 Program: Bill Rogers, Executive Director of the South Carolina Press Association, gave an informative talk about Media Trends in the Digital Age.  He said the association represented over 100 total  newspapers that included 17 daily papers throughout the Palmetto State.  Rogers also noted that over 70%  of people recently surveyed said they believe in the accuracy of newspaper articles. However, he also shared some alarming statistics about the impact of social media and stories found on the internet, stating there were more top 20 "fake" news stories shared during the 2016 Presidential Campaign than the top 20 real news stories.  
Rogers stated that "the media is not at war with anybody." He said it is the press's responsibility to challenge public officials, noting that the press "serves as a watchdog that helps uncover the facts from local school boards to state and national officials."  He also explained how democracy and the media are intertwined and emphasized that "real journalism matters and is essential to democracy."  
Regarding the local press in South Carolina, Rogers chose a quote from the editor of the Lancaster News who said "We're the 'Main Street' media."
As he closed, Rogers said it is very important to consider the course when determining if a story and its source is reliable. He handed out a Guided Research Worksheet titled "How to Identify Fake News in 10 Steps."
Just two days after our last meeting, President Stephen Baggett, Jr. and fellow club leaders gathered for the District Awards Banquet.  As President Baggett noted in his e-mail the following morning, the group returned home with several awards including a very special one. "Because of your devotion to our community, your dedication to our service projects, your faithful support of the Rotary Foundation, and your commitment to the growth of our Club," said Baggett, "I am delighted to report that, for the first time in its illustrious history, the Rotary Club of Greenwood is the District 7750 Club of the Year!" 
President Baggett added "...District Governor Ed Irick said five or six clubs were in close competition for the award, and the tiebreaker was the 'buzz' that he sensed about our club." He also stated that " person cannot create that feeling. Neither can ten. The 'buzz' is created by 115 Rotarians energized together, ready and eager to serve our community."
The club also received the Governor's Excellence Gold Award and was recognized that Rotary International will be giving our club the Rotary Citation.  During the ceremony, President Baggett and Watson Dorn were presented with Rotary Foundation District Service Awards.
Another highlight for Greenwood Rotarians took place when Lorraine Angelino of the Emerald City club earned the "Service Above Self" award.  Angelino, a former District Governor who has served as President of the Emerald City club and is currently serving on a leadership capacity for the Rotary International Foundation.  District Governor Irick said it is Rotary's highest honor that recognizes Rotarians who demonstrate Rotary's motto, Service Above Self, by volunteering their time and talents to help others. He added that the award is internationally competitive and is granted to no more than 150 Rotarians worldwide, and no more than one Rotarian from each district can receive the award each year.
Click on the following link to read the recent Index Journal article about the awards:

Pictured receiving the Club of the Year Award are (left to right): Board member Watson Dorn, President-Elect Angelle LaBorde, President Stephen Baggett, Jr. and President-Elect Designee Eric Taylor.