Bob Carson and Paul Butler – combined they served more than 31 years as secretary for the South Portland/Cape Elizabeth Rotary Club. In most cases, a club officer might serve a year or two in an officer’s position. These two men served long “beyond the call of duty” and exemplify the Rotary motto of “Service Above Self.”


Why did they dedicate themselves to the job for so long?


Carson, who entered Rotary in 1972, served several times as his club’s secretary as well as being president (1985-86). He also served as the Rotary District secretary twice while not being secretary of his club. His reaction: “I loved it. I love my club and I felt I was giving back. You get to know everyone; you get closer to all the members. It was important to me to greet them at each meeting. They are all my friends who are committed to the same service I am. I’m very proud to be a Rotarian.”

Butler became a Rotarian in 1974 (and, incidentally, was sponsored by Bob Carson), and served as club secretary for 17 years after taking over from Carson in 1996. He resigned the position (“In favor of a younger person,” he says) effective January 1 of this year. Butler says, “You know everyone by name and you have a camaraderie with everyone. I loved being secretary; it brought me closer to a lot of our members.” Butler also served as club president (1980-81).


These two men, revered in the South Portland/Cape Elizabeth Rotary Club, continue to be Rotary leaders and they continue to provide “Service Above Self.”


Bob Carson (left) and Paul Butler (right) at the

table for a recent Rotary club meeting.

(courtesy of the SP/CE Rotary Club)