UN Day 2012

The Chartering of the United Nations and Rotary’s Continuing Relationship from San Francisco to New York City

In 1945, representatives of 50 countries met in San Francisco at the United Nations Conference on International Organization to draw up the United Nations Charter. Those delegates deliberated on the basis of proposals worked out by the representatives of China, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom and the United States at Dumbarton Oaks, United States in August-October 1944. The Charter was signed on 26 June 1945 by the representatives of the 50 countries. Poland, which was not represented at the Conference, signed it later and became one of the original 51 Member States. The United Nations officially came into existence on 24 October 1945, when the Charter had been ratified by China, France, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, the United States and by a majority of other signatories. United Nations Day is celebrated on 24 October each year. ‘The first meeting of the UN took place in London on the 16th January 1946, hosted by District 13 at the Caxton Hall, presided over by RI President Tom Warren, who declared it to be the ‘touchstone for a gesture of international goodwill unique in the history of Rotary’. President of RIBI, Tom Benson said ‘UN is a new beginning in international co-operation to make peace; Rotary, wherever established, is pledged to the ideal of service to mankind in international affairs’. The Romance of Rotary in London, Vivian Carter, published by District 13, London, 1947.

The charter took place at the newly constructed War Memorial complex in San Francisco

General Dwight Eisenhower was later reported to have said that Rotary was the greatest power for peace next to the UN

The story of Rotary and the United Nations as of 1955 from Rotary – Fifty Years of Service

Madeleine Carroll, famous British actress, keynote speaker at the 1949 RI convention, spent the post war years working for UNESCO

How did Rotary International come to be invited to assist in San Francisco and to continue
the relationship with the UN?

The answer is in My Road to Rotary by Paul Harris

Carlos P. Romulo Rotary Club of Manila Philippine Brigadier General in WWII, Ambassador of the Philippines to the US, Permanent Representative to the UN, President of the 4th session of the United Nations 1949 and Past Director of Rotary International

2002 United Nations Day
in New York City

A new proposed fellowship of Rotarians devoted
to the UN and Rotary

United Nations Day in New York City 2003

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon came to the Rotary Convention in Birmingham and made three separate appearances over approximately 6 hours during Sunday. It is probably the first time that a UN Secretary has appeared at a Rotary Convention

More than 1,200 Rotarians from 42 countries gathered in New York to learn how to meet humanitarian needs worldwide by working more effectively with United Nations agencies