WHEREAS, in 1928, the first Ruritan club was founded in Holland, Virginia, as a civic service organization with the purpose of creating a better understanding among people; and
WHEREAS, through community service, Ruritan clubs make Virginia’s communities better places to live and work; and
WHEREAS, Ruritan clubs have more than 10,000 members in 382 clubs in Virginia; and
WHEREAS, Ruritan clubs are composed of men and women of all professions, ages, and ethnic backgrounds, including a former Virginia Governor; and
WHEREAS, Ruritan clubs provide and coordinate a wide range of community improvement projects, and activities, including community fundraisers, food drives, and support for veterans activities; and
WHEREAS, Ruritan clubs support local youth organizations, such as 4-H, FFA, Scouts, youth athletic leagues; and scholarships to deserving students; and
WHEREAS, Ruritan clubs donate Rudy Bears to hospitals, school counselors, and emergency and law enforcement agencies to provide cheer and comfort for children in times of crisis;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize May 2019 as RURITAN AWARENESS MONTH in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.