The Paul Harris Society (PHS) is a special level of recognition of Rotarians and friends who contribute $1,000 or more each fiscal year to The Rotary Foundation's humanitarian, educational, and cultural programs.

And it all started right here.

In 1999, Past District Governor Wayne Cusick created the first Paul Harris Society in District 5340. The program was launched during District Governor Marty Peters' year at the Foundation Seminar. Cusick presented his idea for creating a special group of individuals who made the annual commitment to The Rotary Foundation. Before the year had ended, fifty-five Rotary members signed up to be part of the Society. The following year, that number had doubled. 

Fast forward, and what began as a district program has now spread throughout Rotary Clubs worldwide and is now responsible for the financial stability of The Rotary Foundation. Today, 119 districts around the world have a PHS program with a total membership of more than 25,000.

The Foundation Trustees adopted the Paul Harris Society as an official recognition program to be administered at the district level effective in 2006-07. By 2012, the Paul Harris Society donated $39.1 million of the $110.7 million that The Rotary Foundation received in donations. The program has become so successful that Trustees of the Rotary Foundation adopted the program as an official Rotary recognition program in January of 2013.

Our district has a tradition of generous Foundation giving to promote world peace and understanding. Our Paul Harris Society was established in response to the need for more contributions to the Annual Fund and Restricted Giving. Through programs such as the Paul Harris Society and Millions for HOPE, we are increasingly involved in and supportive of Rotary Foundation programs.