In 1988, eleven Rotarians left another club that had decided to maintain a historic policy of admitting men only. These eleven recognized the benefits of the Rotary ideals and argued that admitting women was consistent with values of Rotary. This notion attracted 24 other professionals who founded Horizons as its charter members.
From its origins Horizons defined itself as a “hands on club”. We got our hands dirty rather than writing a check to a charity. Teams of Horizon Rotarians contributed to the construction many homes through Habitat for Humanity. Every year since the inception of the Dane County Paintathon, the Club sent a team to transform a house with a new coat of paint. We became the first club to adopt a highway in Madison. Several work teams have flown to Bolivia and Guatemala providing labor and material for the expansion of local medical clinics. Every week, another team shares a route and delivers Meals on Wheels in Dane County. We have had the good fortune to look into the grateful eyes of people affected by the impact of group of Rotarians working together.
Rotary International sought several pilot clubs to experiment and innovate with the “rules of Rotary” to make it more relevant in a modern era. When Horizons Rotary was tasked to become one of those pilot clubs, we dropped the traditional rules and substituted a simple principal of a desire to serve.
If these ideas find a place in your heart, we would welcome you to join us and get your hands dirty. We are all about making it easy to make a difference.