Important Letter from RI President Holger Knaack
Dear Rotarians/ International PolioPlus Committee members/ Directors and Trustees,
It is with great pride that we inform you that one of our own has been named one of TIME’s “100 Most Influential People in the World.” Just a few moments ago, Dr. Tunji Funsho, Rotary’s Nigeria National PolioPlus Chair was named to the TIME 100 list for his critical leadership in working with Rotary members and our partners to achieve a wild polio-free Nigeria and eradicate the wild poliovirus in the African region. He is the first Rotary member to receive this honor for our work to eradicate polio.
You can view Dr. Funsho’s profile on the TIME website here.
Dr. Funsho is a member of the Rotary Club of Lekki in Lagos, Nigeria and is Past District Governor of District 9110 and member of the International PolioPlus Committee. Dr. Funsho is a cardiologist with a lifelong commitment to building a healthier world. As Nigeria National PolioPlus Chair since 2013, he has built on the work of his predecessors by leading PolioPlus efforts in Nigeria. Working alongside his fellow Rotarians, Dr. Funsho has built awareness for the importance of polio immunization, encouraged governments and public figures to support polio eradication, and served as a vocal leader and advocate for Rotary and our fight to end polio.
The TIME 100 list recognizes the activism, innovation and achievement of the world’s most influential individuals. Dr. Funsho joins the list with some of the most important and well-known public figures in the world who have been past recipients of the honor: heads of state such as Angela Merkel, religious figures like the Dalai Lama and Pope Francis, celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Bono, philanthropists like Bill Gates, and activists such as Malala Yousafzai.
Dr. Funsho stands on the shoulders of the countless women and men of Rotary who have dedicated their lives, their time, and their money to Rotary’s top priority of eradicating polio. This honor is not just a testament to his work, it is acknowledgment that Rotary members make a difference in the world—one that is worthy of international recognition among the world’s most distinguished leaders.
Every Rotarian can be a leader in the fight to eradicate polio. We hope you’ll use this recognition of Dr. Funsho and Rotary as an opportunity to put renewed energy and focus into creating a world where no child ever again has to be paralyzed by the poliovirus. We’ve come so far into our fight to eradicate polio, and we’ve made incredible progress in the face of enormous challenges. As we join in congratulation to Dr. Funsho, let’s join together and deliver upon our promise to End Polio Now.
Holger Knaack, President, Rotary International
K.R. Ravindran, Chair, The Rotary Foundation