March 10, 2016

Of the March 10, 2016 Meeting
The Rotary Club of Mobile
Call to Order: The meeting was called to order by club president Robby McClure who invited Tommy Fulton forward to offer the invocation. Tommy Blankenship then led the club in song accompanied by Less Greer on the piano. Tom Martenstein welcomed visiting Rotarians and guests of members.
Youth Merit Award: This week the Youth Merit Award was presented to Elizabeth Morrissette, a senior at St. Pauls. Elizabeth is a granddaughter of John M. Morrissette, Jr, who served as president of the club in 1980/81. She spoke on the subject of service which she termed “a labor of love.”
Announcements: Robby McClure made the following announcements:
• A board meeting will take place after the meeting next week on March 17.
• The Mobile West Rotary Club has changed their location to Briquettes Restaurant on Montlimar Drive.
• Robert Greer presented the club with a certificate from Rotary International thanking the club for its financial assistance in the End Polio Now Campaign.
Program: OysterSouth: A Revolution in Oyster Farming
Cullen Duke introduced Bill Walton, PhD, a professor at Auburn and Senior Scientist at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab. Dr. Walton discussed the farming of oysters which was introduced through a program sponsored by the Sea Lab in 2003. The goal he said is to provide “consistent, beautiful, branded oysters” at a reasonable price point.
Dr. Walton noted that historically Southerners have been accustomed to plentiful oysters at very reasonable prices but that quality levels were sometimes questionable. He said that through oyster farming the quantity and quality can be controlled.
Currently there are 13 oyster farms in Alabama within five areas surrounding Mobile. He explained that oyster farming is now simply an option and will never completely replace what he termed “bottom culture” to describe traditional oyster harvesting.
After answering numerous questions, Dr. Walton was presented a certificate by Robby McClure, noting that in his honor a donation has been made to MARC.
The meeting adjourned at 1:00 PM.
Tom McGehee