Lori Sadler distinguished herself as a leader while serving twenty-six years in the United States Marine Corps, retiring as a colonel. She was cited many times for her professionalism and leadership abilities. For her accomplishments, Lori was given the “Trailblazer” Award from her Alma Mater, University of Northern Colorado.
Alongside her husband, Woody Sadler, Lori Sadler has worked for 19 years providing exceptional leadership at the Lexington Sunrise Rotary Club’s 4th of July Celebration. She set-up a polio-plus awareness booth and offered community information on how the Rotary Foundation is working to eradicate diseases, building wells, setting up micro-loans for women in underdeveloped countries, brings water and sanitation to rural areas around the world. Through the VMI student-led Rotaract Club service program, she has traveled with the cadets overseas on mission trips and welcomed many cadets into her home. She has helped deliver wheelchairs in Guatemala, Mexico, Columbia, Southern Caribbean Islands and Guyana. By leading a team of non-Rotarians to Central America, she promoted goodwill and peace. Lori has helped Rotarians deliver shoes and coats for underprivileged children in Scott County, Virginia.
Nine years ago, she raised funds to start the program with Lexington Sunrise Rotary that gives every 3rd grader in our community a world globe. She also headed up a program that provides Christmas gifts to residents of the “Manor Houses” in Natural Bridge, providing a party to them and what in some cases is their only Christmas gift. Lori has served at the Community table and mentored children in Central Elementary School. She has been very active in promoting and participating in the R.E. Lee Episcopal Church bazaar, which provides support to local charities.
Her fundraising efforts include being involved with the Community Foundation for Rockbridge, Bath, and Allegheny which helps individuals, families, and non-profit organizations and other’s establish charitable legacies. Through the Rotary Leadership Institute, Lori has mentored many Rotary members in our community and the state, helping them to become leaders in our area clubs and district. In the spring of 2016, at the Rotary District 7570 Conference, District Governor Alex Wilkins, bestowed upon her the District Governor’s Citation “for selfless and unwavering dedication to Rotary in her community and in our District.” She also received at the Rotary International District 7570 District Conference in Hot Springs, 2015-16, "110%" Governor’s Award which is recommended by the Rotary Area 6 assistant governor. Both awards are a testament to her exemplary service to Rotary at the District and Club levels, and reflect her deep commitment to our community.
In June of 2016, Lori organized our Rotary Club, “Lexington Lunch” giving Lexington three clubs, becoming a charter member and officer affording opportunities for more Rotarians to serve our community and the world. She was presented with the "Citizen of the Year" award by the Rockbridge, Buena Vista, and Lexington Chamber of Commerce in the fall of 2016. Lori worked with the Rotary Club of Lexington Lunch members, District 7570 grants, Books & Company, and other community benefactors to distribute a literacy book to all the first graders in our community, including private and home schooled children.
Now, Lori and the Rotary Club of Lexington Lunch are collaborating with District 7570 grants, Boxerwood, and its supporters on a project to enhance the Boxerwood Play Trail in Lexington.
After relocating to Lexington in 2005, Elaine Nelson began serving on the Rockbridge Area Occupational Center Board of Directors and eagerly joined the Lexington Sunrise Rotary Club. Elaine worked tirelessly to advocate, recognize and expand employment opportunities for people with disabilities in the Lexington, Buena Vista and Rockbridge area. She chaired the board of directors of RAOC from 2007-2009. Elaine enjoyed leading the 5K Run/Walk fundraising event and involving community volunteers.
While a member of Lexington Sunrise Rotary Club, she served as the membership chair, community service chair, a club service director, president-elect, and president of the Club (2013-2014). She identified organizations in our community that needed the Club’s support and volunteer assistance, and mentored the next president of the club.
Elaine responded to the needs of people with disabilities again in our community by starting the Coffee House of Rockbridge held at the YMCA in 2005, a social program for adults with disabilities. The organization became a 501(c) 3 non-profit in 2015. She recruited board members and reached out to people in our community to volunteer on Friday nights. The participants look forward to the special annual events--the Christmas party, the Prom, and the summer picnic. It means the world to them as it connects them to the larger community and gives them a supportive, social network.
She saw yet another community need for service, when she was asked to serve on the Dabney S. Lancaster Community College Educational Foundation Board in 2010. She has been an active member of the Investment Committee and is currently serving as the Board President for FY 2015-16. Through the Foundation, Elaine has helped keep education affordable in our region by the awarding of student scholarships and she has also helped inspire students to achieve their goals.
Aware that some people in our community had not found a Rotary Club that would meet their schedule, Elaine committed to starting The Rotary Club of Lexington Lunch and immediately raised her hand to serve as the first president of the Club, becoming a charter member and officer. In June 2017, at the Charter Celebration of the one year anniversary of the Club, Elaine was presented with a multiple Paul Harris Fellow (sapphire pin) for her exemplary leadership and service, as the first president of the Rotary Club of Lexington Lunch.