Introducing Our First District Polio Plus Advocate

I’m Paul Brochu, a member of the Plymouth, NH club and DG Mike Carrier has asked me to serve our District 7850 as our first PolioPlus Advocate.  As the PolioPlus Advocate, I’ll help keep Rotary’s commitment to the eradication of polio in the public eye, to provide any assistance that I can to District 7850 clubs as they help with Rotary’s polio eradication effort, and to help raise funds for Rotary’s End Polio campaign.
I’m a retired Navy Medical Service Corps Officer and spent the last 23 years of my 30-year Navy career focused on public health.  In 2019, I was fortunate enough to be able to take part in a Rotary National Immunization Day trip to India to see first-hand the impact Rotary continues to have in the worldwide effort to eradicate polio.  I look forward to talking and working with many of you over the next year and you’ll be hearing more from me!
Rotary International has been directly involved in the eradication of polio since 1979 when it began a multiyear project to immunize 6 million children in the Philippines.  In 1988, RI was a founding partner when the Global Polio Eradication initiative was launched. At that time, there were an estimated 350,000 cases of polio in 125 countries.  Today, polio is endemic in just two countries, Afghanistan and Pakistan, and the world is incredibly close to eradicating polio.
Notable Survivor of Polio: As the summer Olympics begin this week, we note that Wilma Rudolph, winner of three track and field gold medals at the Rome 1960 Olympics (and bronze in Melbourne 1956), overcame polio as a child.