Art Erasmus

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Art was born in Europe during the first third of the Second World War. While his father was serving as interpreter in the armed forces his mother with their four children became refugees and in the winter of 1944 and traveled under very difficult circumstances to West Germany. After the war, and a year in war prisoner camp, his father and mother were re-united and decided to emigrate to Canada for a new start in life and opportunities for the children. They settled first in Oliver BC and later moved to Smithers BC where Art completed High School. Art then earned a Bachelor of Education degree at the University of British Columbia and later a Masters degree in Educational Administration at Western Washington State University.


In his education career, Art spent the first 31 years in Prince George in many positions in schools and in the district office. He spent an additional 8 years in the Terrace school district retiring in 2001.


Art and Lesley met through community service on which both thrive. They were married in 1997 by District 5040 Past District Governor Leo Nimsick. Each has two daughters from a previous marriage




Art was invited to join the Rotary Club of Prince George in 1984. He served that club in many capacities and as president in the club's 50th year, 1991-92. During that year he inducted the first female Rotarian into the club. He completely computerized the administration of the club's annual radio/TV auction.


In 1993 Art joined the Rotary club of Terrace. He served that club in various capacities and as president in 1998 - 99. He returned to serve on the club board after his year as District Governor.


Lesley joined the Rotary Club of Terrace - Skeena Valley in 2000, and after holding many positions in the club served as its president in 2005 - 06.


Art is a sustaining Rotary Foundation member, a multiple Paul Harris Fellow and a Rotary Foundation Benefactor. Lesley is a sustaining Foundation member, a Paul Harris Fellow and a Foundation Bequest Society member.


Art served as District Governor in 2001 - 2002 under RI president Richard D. King. The theme for the year was "Mankind is our Business" We had a song, sung to the tune of "Give my Regards to Broadway"


Sing out a song of Rotary
We're in the Business of Mankind
We soar the earth as Regal Eagles
New members each to find

We are the class in black my friend

We serve with all our heart and mind
So, sing out a song of Rotary
We're in the business of mankind.


MEMORIES 2001 - 2002


1.     First District Governor from the North West part of District 5040. As a result of being close by and available, successive club officers seek my advice on Rotary matters

2.     Spent 90 nights away from home, a function of where I live and the geography of the district, traveled over 40,000 kilometers on Rotary business

3.     Assistant District Governors attendance at P.E.T.S. became required in District 5040

4.     Club Planning changed to the Planning Guide for Effective Rotary Clubs

5.      The largest membership growth in several years as a result of efforts by clubs

6.      Rotary Foundation donations topped US$100,000.00

7.     District conference in Terrace BC with 1/3 of the delegates attending their first District Conference. Theme for the conference was "Rotary Makes a Better Life for Everyone"

8.      Revision of the accounting practices of district funds in line with auditors' recommendations

9.     One new club formed, Smithers Alpine.




·          Mentor to club leaders of several clubs

·          District 5040 as representative to Pacific Northwest P.E.T.S. 2003 - 2006

·         Training Coordinator 2003 - 2006

·         District Trainer 2006 and 2007

·         Art and Lesley have served Rotary in Ethiopia in 2003 and 2006; once on a Polio NID and once on the Ginir water project. Another project is in the planning stages.

·           Art and Lesley will be part of the Zone 22 G.E.T.S. training team in 2007

·         The opportunities to serve through Rotary are endless. Whatever your passion for service, Rotary provides the avenue.




Rotarians friends of Rotarians; Club, District, National and International Leaders and people who benefit from Rotary programs for continuing to make my Rotary life a hugely rewarding experience.