One of Bal Harbour’s well-known faces and a founding member of the village’s rotary club will be honored this month.
Stanley Whitman, the person who built the luxurious Bal Harbour Shops, will receive a proclamation at the 60th anniversary of the Rotary Club of Bal Harbour, starting at 11:30 a.m. Oct. 17 at the Sea View Hotel, The Crystal Room, 9909 Collins Ave.
Whitman, 94, said he is grateful for the proclamations from Bal Harbour, Bay Harbor Islands, Miami Shores, and others he will receive.
“It is a wonderful honor,” he said in a phone interview. “It is the highest honor the Rotary can give you.”
He expects family members and friends to be in attendance to witness the honor. More than 230 people are expected.
Whitman was the second president of the club and served in the past as treasurer and secretary. Former president Andrew Burnstine says the club has been in Bal Harbour since 1953.
“Rotary International was founded in 1905 by Paul Harris in Chicago as a vehicle for local business people to meet socially, fellowship, develop business contacts, and to give back to the community,” he wrote in an e-mail.
Rotary Clubs span the globe with almost 34,000 clubs in 200 countries and over 1.2 million members. The local chapter district #6990 includes 51 clubs from Key West to Pompano Beach, including the Bahamas.
Burnstine and Judith Cruz-Burnstine decided to approach the club honoring Whitman and it was approved.
“Stanley was a visionary, that against all odds created his vision and turned into the Bal Harbour Shops. He is a pillar in The Bal Harbour community, and the surrounding areas,” Burnstine said. “He is also a philanthropist, that supports many local charities."
Five local Rotary Clubs from the area will be joining to celebrate the milestone. For entertainment, pianist Milosz will be performing.