The Rotary Club of Destin recently completed its 2017-2018 fiscal Rotary year and installed its 2018-2019 Board of Directors at its annual banquet and awards ceremony at Rutherford’s 465 at Regatta Bay.

“The Rotary Club of Destin set out in 2017-18 to ‘make a difference’ locally and globally, and through our programs, our giving, and our service I believe we have done just that," said outgoing club president Alan Jowers. "The Rotary Club of Destin raised over $120,000 in gifts and bequests, which by itself exceeded the $100,000 Rotary Foundation goal for the entire area. District 6940, as a whole, more than doubled its goal of $1 million.”

The Rotary Club of Destin reached another milestone in its mission to eradicate hunger and provide educational and cultural experiences for youth development. The evening’s recognition awards went to Kyle Aichele as “Rookie of the Year," Scott McCormick as “Service Above Self” and Dion Moniz was named “Rotarian of the Year.” The 2018-2019 Board of Directors, under Moniz’s presidency, are Evelio Silvera (president elect/Foundation International chair), Tori Hughes (secretary/public relations chair), Dave Morrow (sergeant-at-arms), Alan Jowers (past president), Jacob Watkins (treasurer), Tami Groth (club/community service), Peter Mohylsky (programs), Brett Chipser (membership), Jonathan Jernigan (social media) and Kevin Bowyer (Rotary Club of Destin Scholarship Fund).

The Rotary Club of Destin’s 2017-2018 total giving of $54,173 benefited the Boys & Girls Club, Crop Drop, Destin Middle School Interact Club, Food For Thought, Harvest House, Mattie Kelly Arts Foundation, NWFSC Scholarship Allocation, Rotary Club Scholarship Foundation, Rotary Wheelchair Project, Rotary Polio Plus Fund and Rotary International Foundation. Rachel McMullen, a Fort Walton Beach High School graduate with a 4.6 GPA and 2017 Miss Destin, was recognized as the Rotary Club of Destin Scholarship recipient. She plans to attend Florida State University to pursue a major in marketing with a minor in business finance.

“I have big shoes to fill, but I'm looking forward to leading our club into the next level of service and fellowship," Moniz said. "Our theme this year is 'Be the Inspiration,' so our goal is to inspire change in the world and in each other. It's going to be a great year for the Rotary Club of Destin."