Patrick Tritt asked members of his audience to remember the moment when they first realized they were making a difference.
"You become a Kiwanian when you look back and have your Kiwanis moment," he said. Mr. Tritt, a 30-year Kiwanian and the governor of the Georgia District of Kiwanis International, recently addressed the Georgia Division 6 Governor's Rally at Macedonia United Methodist Church in Warren County.
"Your service matters," he said. "Service is the backbone of the Kiwanis experience."
He called each member to accept more responsibility.
"It is sensible to take turns in doing demanding jobs," he said.
Mr. Tritt, an Athens, Ga., travel agency manager, outlined Kiwanis' service but also called on club members to tend to their own organization.
"We have stressed through the years that we must grow our clubs and our membership to continue to offer that service," he said.
He urged members to help expand the club.
"Don't assume everyone else will invite members. It is your responsibility," he said.
"We may never know when or how our Kiwanis moment affected another life."
The Thomson delegation of nine was headed by President Jay Poston, who presented Mr. Tritt and wife Eunice Tritt with a Shoshi Gashira camellia plant from R.A. Dudley Nurseries Inc. in Thomson.
Warrenton brought a delegation of eight, including Division 6 Lt. Gov. Walker Davis. The Warrenton club gave a basket of gifts and Warrenton brochures to Mrs. Tritt, who is a teacher. The Tritts travel Georgia weekly to attend division meetings.
"I've never been to two that have been exactly alike," Mrs. Tritt said.
The banquet drew 17 members of the Washington Club, four each from the Louisville and Uptown Augusta clubs and two from the Augusta club.
Mr. Tritt presented a Light a Fire pin to Margaret Norris of the Washington club. Her husband, Carlton Norris, who died in October 2009, was a Kiwanis governor.
Mr. Poston, representing the Thomson club, said the local chapter is putting more emphasis on membership.
"Our talents are so much stronger together," he said.
Tony Gazette, representing Warrenton, said, "I guess we may be the smallest club. I know we're the smallest community. But we have to make up for that in other ways."