The first Rotary meeting was held on February 23, 1905 headed up by Chicago attorney Paul P. Harris.
His purpose was to assemble a professional club that brought together men from a variety of vocations. That vision is still practice today as Rotary Clubs continue to hold high ethical standards in business and professions, and recognition of the worthiness of all useful occupations.
Harris (front row, fourth from left) with founders of the International Society for Crippled Children (later Easter Seals). The society was established by Rotarian Edgar F. Allen in 1921 and received The Rotary Foundation's first donation. Harris served as the chair of the society's first board of directors.