Meeting Speaker Guidelines


When your turn comes up to select a speaker for a club meeting, here are some club-approved guidelines to consider:

  • Choose a speaker with a topic of informational, educational, motivational or entertainment value that will be of general interest to all club members.
  • Refrain from controversial topics or volatile issues that could arouse anger and division among members. If you believe that the Club should hear about a controversial or volatile issue, please contact the Board of Directors for direction. In such cases, we’ll want to ensure a balanced perspective. Always refer to the Four-Way Test when considering speakers and topics.
  • Avoid repetition or sameness.  Look for a speaker we haven’t heard before with a fresh topic.
  • Refrain from political or religious topics.  Rotary International is a non-political and non-religious organization.  As a matter of policy, Rotary Clubs do not take positions on public questions, including political or international issues.
  • Refrain from political candidates during an election campaign.  It’s OK to have a congressman, senator or other elected official speak to our club when the format is simply a report to constituents on congressional or legislative affairs.
  • Avoid local representatives of non-profit organizations when their primary purpose is to solicit funding, unless requested by the Board.  Consider such speakers only if they have a unique topic that is not a sales pitch for funding.  Never allow requests for funding unless the request has been formally approved in advance by the club board of directors.
  • Refrain from product or service promotion. Advise company executives who are invited to speak to deal with issues that affect their industry and the community and how they cope with them. They should not use the Rotary podium to promote their products or services. Rotary speakers should refrain from dispensing individual financial advice.