Club History

​The Rotary Club of Sonora Sunrise has always been a morning club but has not always been known by that name. The Rotary Club of Jamestown was chartered and officially installed into Rotary District 522 on December 23, 1987 as a morning club. The sponsoring Rotary Club was the Rotary Club of Sonora 49er. The Jamestown club was destined to be the fourth Rotary Club in Tuolumne County. In addition to the 49er club there was the Rotary Club of Twain Harte and the Rotary Club of Sonora. The chartering District Governor was Robert G. Bitter (1987-88) of the Rotary Club of Madera Sunrise.

After being chartered, the Sonora Sunrise's fortunes did not always run smoothly. The first problem was to find a venue in Jamestown that was large enough and willing to serve breakfast. The club shortly became a moving feast of sorts. For a short time the club met at Boomers Restaurant but that was far too small for the 27 charter members. Next, we tried the Jamestown Hotel but they demanded a guarantee of 25 breakfasts at each meeting. This seemed impossible to guarantee so the meetings were moved to the Jamestown Community Center. This move wasn't without difficulty. The venue was also used as a courtroom. The judge refused to allow the Rotarians to meet in the main auditorium despite the fact that we adjourned at 8 AM and the court was not convened until 9. So the members were forced to meet in the kitchen. In frustration the club moved to the restaurant at the Sonora Inn in 1987. 

The name of the club was changed to The Rotary Club of Jamestown/Sonora Sunrise. At about this time the Rotary District number was changed from 522 to 5220.

In 1987 the Sonora Inn Restaurant declared bankruptcy. So, the club moved to a restaurant in Columbia, The Columbia House where they remained for a number of years. During that time the club was renamed The Rotary Club of Sonora Sunrise. In 1998 the club was moved back to the restaurant in the Sonora Inn. The management promptly declared bankruptcy. This forced the club to move to Perko's where the club met until it outgrew the facilities. The club currently meets at Mother Lode Job Training, and the membership continues to grow.

Club Presidents

1.Jim Costello1987-88
2.Jim Hildreth1988-89
3.Tom Lealos1989-90
4.Richard  Rohrbacher*1990-91
5.Ken Moore1991-92
6.Patricia Perry1992-93
7.George Dean1993-94
8.Patrick Greenwell1994-95
9.Frank Perry1995-96
10.Sherrin Grout1996-97
11.Del Hodges1997-98
12.Christine Daly**1998-99
13.Jerry Kahl1999-00
14.Jim Childers2000-01
15.Jim Childers2001-02
16.Jim Riggs2002-03
17.Walt Kruse2003-04
18.Gregory Oliver2004-05
19.Sally Dunn2005-06
20.Jim Barth2006-07
21.Del Hodges2007-08
22.Jim Cherry2008-09
23.Robin Phillips2009-10
24.Bob Hoyt2010-11
25.Julie Kline2011-12
26.Ray Hall2012-13
27.Robin Rowland2013-14
28.Cathie Peacock2014-15
29.Tom Teach2015-16
30.Kaenan Whitman2016-17
31.John Maciel2017-18
32.Mike Olenchalk2018-19
33.Dave Thoeny2019-20
34.Christine Daly**2020-21
35.Robin Rowland2021-22

Robin Phillips/Dave Thoeny

37.Doug Forte (elect)2023-24

* District 5220 Governor 1995-96

** District 5220 Governor 2022-23