New Members

Posted by Kelly Buck on Jul 23, 2017






The Rotary Club of Ithaca is pleased to introduce three individuals who have recently joined the service club. These community members bring professional experience from the business and not-for-profit sectors and volunteer in Tompkins County. Ithaca Rotary’s motto is “Service Above Self.” Membership is open to all who share in this belief; new members are accepted year-round.

“The Ithaca Rotary Club is delighted to welcome these individuals,” said Rotary Membership Chair Ron Provus. “Our members come from all walks of life and have a wide variety of interests to match those of Rotary. As members of Ithaca Rotary, individuals give of their time and skills to positively impact the needs of our community.”

Ithaca Rotary welcomes:

Dennis Gray is a native of Canada, raised in Toronto, Ontario. He earned a degree in commerce from Ryerson Polytechnical Institute in Toronto. He and his wife Maricelis, another new Ithaca Rotary Club member, moved to Spencer, NY in April 2016 when Maricelis took a position at Cornell University. Dennis is now founder and CEO of Backyard Brands, Inc. and has been a long-time Rotarian. He has spent significant time and effort working on Rotary International water and sanitation projects in Kenya and Uganda.


Ryan Harriott is a program manager at the Women’s Opportunity Center in Ithaca. She is interested in leadership and community development, and is involved in local youth events and food pantries, and has raised money for Haitian orphanages. Ryan holds an associate’s degree from TC-3, a B.S. in human and community services from SUNY Empire, and is currently enrolled in the MPA program at Capella University. Ryan lives in Groton with her family.


 Rusdi Sumner is originally from Trumansburg, NY. Her alma mater is SUNY Cortland, where she studied business economics and communications. After a stint at A.G. Edwards in Syracuse, she returned to Ithaca in 2001 to sell real estate at Audrey Edelman & Associates. Subsequently, Rusdi owned and operated Avalon Homes for ten years, and is now an associate wealth advisor at Tompkins Financial Advisors. Rusdi has served as board treasurer for Better Housing of Tompkins County, and has been on the board of Habitat for Humanity.

New Rotary members are invited to serve on projects and committees that are beneficial to Ithaca and the global community. Activities range from a few hours to longer time commitments. New members meet fellow Rotarians at weekly luncheon meetings at 12:15 pm every Wednesday at Coltivare, 235 S. Cayuga Street, downtown Ithaca. The public is welcome to attend luncheon meetings and learn more about Rotary; cost is $15 at the door.

For more information about the Ithaca Rotary Club and membership, please call Ron Provus at 607-351-8539 or email Additional information about the Rotary Club of Ithaca may be found at