Clubs 3141 - Rotary Protocol Decorum

Every Rotary Club has to organise a number of functions and meetings. There is certain Protocol to be observed to recognise dignitaries to show them love and respect of the organisation. A proper observance of protocol enhances the prestige of the concerned club and also brings decorum. Few hints on PROTOCOL are given below:

  • Any Rotary club meeting should be presided over by the President of the club. The meeting should be called to order by the President and not by the Master of Ceremonies.
  • Any Rotary district meeting will be presided over by the Serving District Governor. He will call the meeting to order.
  • The Protocol to be observed in order of precedence of greetings is District Governor, Past District Governors (Seniority wise), District Governor Elect, District Governor Nominee, District Officers, Serving Presidents, Past Presidents, Presidents - Elect and so on.
  • The General Rule is Current position takes precedence over past position; Past position take precedence over future position. Accompanying spouses will have the same rank.
  • Once Protocol is observed in a meeting initially, the subsequent speakers need not repeat the Protocol. This will help save time and also avoid possible foul up of Protocol.
  • If the Mayor or the Fist Citizen of the town is present in a meeting, he should be invited to the dias and should be recognised first.
  • In any Rotary meeting if the Serving Governor is present, as the Chief Guest, he should speak last. After the speech of the Governor there should be no further speeches. The only item after his speech should be acknowledgements announcements and Vote of Thanks.
  • During the Official visit of the Governor to the Club, there should be no other Chief guest, Governor being the only one. Clubs are discouraged to have more than ONE Chief Guest at the installation function or such other Rotary function or during Governor's Official Visit.
  • Rotary Club meetings (except training or informative sessions), irrespective of whether they are regular meetings of the club, installation meeting, or meeting of the Club during Governor's visit should be concluded, as far as possible, within one hour. Clubs are advised to finalise such programmes in consultation with their respective GGR.
  • It is a practice followed in most clubs to recognise the dignitaries / invited guests present by welcoming them with flowers. Such a Recognition of their presence should not interfere with the proceedings of the meeting. The recognition of those who come in after the welcome initially (as per the agenda) should be carried out together in the end & not from time to time as they come in.
  • Care should be taken to ensure that the standards & values of Rotary are not diluted or compromised at meetings. As a service organisation austerity in our conduct and sincerity of purpose should be in tune with our social roles.
  • The function of Master of Ceremony, if at all necessary, should be limited only to announce the items of the agenda to be followed. He/She is not expected to make comments on the speeches or assure anything on behalf of the club, which should only be the prerogative of the presiding officer. Presiding Officers should not devalue themselves by allowing Master of Ceremonies to take over the proceedings and themselves observing a secondary role.