The Gloucester Rotary Club has named Joseph Ciolino and Mara Destino as Paul Harris Fellows, the prestigious award named after the Chicago lawyer who founded the Rotary movement in 1905. Ciolino was selected by a club committee of previous recipients of the award, while Destino was chosen by members of the Interact Club, the very active group of Gloucester High School Junior Rotarians. Ciolino and Destino will be honored at a special dinner on Wednesday, June 14, at Cruiseport Gloucester, located at 6 Rowe Square in downtown Gloucester. The social hour will begin at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m.
Joseph Ciolino was born in Gloucester and graduated from Gloucester High School before attending Wentworth Institute in Boston and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. After college, Joe began his career in 1970 at the Building Center in Gloucester, where he spent 21 years, rising in the company to become Store Manager and Vice President. He later managed Three Lanterns Ship Supply for three years, but the highlight of his work’s life came in 1991 when he opened The Weathervane Gift Shop on Main Street in downtown Gloucester.
Joe is heavily involved in the political life of the community, serving as Ward One City Councilor (2002-2006), City Councilor at Large (2008-present), and as City Council President since January 2016. Ciolino has been a member of the Gloucester Rotary Club since 1992 and was its President in 2004/2005. He was a founding member and is currently a Director of the Gloucester Downtown Association. Ciolino is Vice President of the Board of Directors of the North Shore Health Project and a Corporator of the Sawyer Free Library. Former affiliations include Addison Gilbert Hospital and North Shore Red Cross. Joe and his wife Joan have been married for almost 30 years and reside in Gloucester.
Mara Destino was born in Seekonk and moved to Gloucester in the mid-1990s. Mara has an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education from the University of Rhode Island and a graduate degree in Early Childhood Special Needs from Wheelock College, and has put her training to great use in her professional life over the past 25 years. She has taught a variety of preschool classrooms in Brookline school system, at Sandy Bay Preschool, at St. Ann’s School, and currently at Cape Ann Preschool.
Mara’s resume includes the quote “working with children is my passion.” She has exhibited that passion not just in her career, but also as a volunteer for several community groups, including Our Lady of Good Voyage and the Cape Ann YMCA. Mara is especially proud of her role as Founder and Co-chair of the Adaptive Lacrosse Program, designed to provide girls and boys with physical, learning, and/or cognitive disabilities the chance to learn the game of lacrosse in an appropriate environment. Established in 2012, the Program now numbers 30 adaptive players and over 75 mentors who assist in skills development.
Mara and husband Alex have been married for almost 22 years and reside in Gloucester. They are the proud parents of Tess (20), Maggie (18), and Tucker (14).
Tickets to the Paul Harris Distinguished Service Award Dinner are $47 per person and may be reserved by contacting event Chair Steve Kaity at 978-879-1051. The Dinner is open to the general public, and friends and colleagues of Ciolino and Destino are encouraged to attend.
The mission of Rotary International is to provide service to others, promote integrity, and advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through its fellowship of business, professional, and community leaders.