Wellington Rotary Honors Tom Wenham With Donation To WCF

Rotary Check Presentation — (Front row) Walter Imperatore, Pam Tahan, Larry Falk, Regis Wenham, Hope Barron, Maggie Zeller and Joanna Boynton; (back row) James Seder, Nikki Stinson, Jay Broder, Dwayne Brown, Scott Armand, Randy Pfeiffer, George Kinoshita, Ben Boynton, Dr. Gordon Johnson, Don Gross, Mickey Smith, Jim Sackett and Barry Manning.

One of the Wellington Rotary Club’s signature events is its golf tournament. This year, the annual outing was renamed the Thomas M. Wenham Memorial Golf Classic in honor of one of Wellington’s founding fathers.

The event was held in March and raised money to support Wellington Rotary Club projects and the Wellington Community Foundation, an organization that was very close to Wenham’s heart. He chaired the foundation from its inception until he passed away late last year. On Thursday, May 18, local Rotarians presented a check for $2,500 to the Wellington Community Foundation.

The name change was driven by Wellington Rotary Club President-Elect Scott Armand.

“I’ve known Regis and Tom Wenham for 20-plus years. I was very close to him, and he did a lot of good not just for the Rotary Club, but for the Village of Wellington as a whole,” Armand said. “I thought it would be apropos to honor him by renaming the tournament, and partnering with the Wellington Community Foundation is a monumental move, I think, for both of us. Moving forward, we can continue to do good in the community, not just for this specific event, but for all things considered. We are always looking for different opportunities to help the community.”

Armand fondly referred to Wellington’s first elected mayor as “Mr. Wellington” as he discussed approaching Regis, Tom Wenham’s widow, for her permission before officially proposing the new name for the golf outing. She was happy to approve the request.

Regis Wenham said Tom would have been honored to know that the Rotary’s golf tournament was named in his memory.

“It is quite an honor,” she said, adding that she was glad to have the opportunity to join the club for dinner after the tournament. “The reception was very nice. It was quite a wonderful thing they did for Tom to remember him that way.”

She added that Tom would have been particularly thankful for the donation to the Wellington Community Foundation, which he spent the final years of his life supporting. “I know that Tom would have deeply appreciated the donation to the foundation,” she said.

Armand added that he is looking forward to the Rotary’s support for the foundation continuing through the golf tournament on an annual basis.

Wenham had an impact on so many in the community, including some he did not even know. Larry Falk, the committee chair and organizer of the golf outing, did not get the opportunity to meet Wenham, but when he was approached by Armand about the partnership with WCF and new title for the outing, he was in full support.

Falk noted that the event is growing, and he hopes the support for WCF will grow with it.

“The first year we had 36 golfers, and in year two we had 52,” he said. “Our goal for this coming year is to partner with the foundation and get their strength behind us as well, and get an event sponsor for the tournament. We’ve already started planning, and now that we have two years under our belt are reaching out to corporations. My goal would be to break the record and have a minimum of 72 golfers.”

Falk added that the Thomas M. Wenham Memorial Golf Outing will proudly keep the new name and its link to the foundation in Wenham’s honor.

Both the Wellington Rotary Club and the Wellington Community Foundation have strong missions aligned to help the community, and the memorial golf outing is a perfect example of Wellington coming together.

“I knew Tom as a politician, councilman, mayor and all that, but to me, the most important thing he did was carry on with the foundation, and that’s why in 2019 we gave him the Rotary’s Frank T. Gladney Community Service Award for his service to our community,” said Don Gross, who serves as both vice president of the Wellington Rotary Club and a board member of the Wellington Community Foundation. “He was part of what makes Wellington a great hometown. Tom accomplished a lot through his activities on the council, but in my opinion, his targeted accomplishments for seniors, veterans and children through the Wellington Community Foundation are the most important.”

For more information about the Wellington Rotary and its events, visit www.wellingtonrotary.org.

To learn about the work and programs of the Wellington Community Foundation, visit www.wellingtoncommunityfoundation.org.