Bel Air Rotarian Lester H. Orsburn, Sr. Recognized at Celebration of Life Service and Tree Dedication


A One-Time Five Thousand Dollar Trade Scholarship will be Offered in his Memory

Current and past members of the Bel Air Rotary Club gathered on November 13, 2019 with the family of Lester H. Orsburn, Sr., who passed away on September 26th, five days after his 98th birthday. Orsburn was a member of the Bel Air Rotary Club for 63 years. He became a member in 1956 and maintained a perfect weekly attendance record. Orsburn either attended the Bel Air Club’s Wednesday luncheon or made up at another Rotary club. He was also the owner and operator of Harry W. Orsburn and Son Construction, originally his father’s company, for many years before retirement.

As a member of the Bel Air Rotary Club, Orsburn frequently delivered the blessing and invocation at the weekly luncheon and served as the unofficial chaplain. He was the oldest member of Rotary in Harford County and served as the President of the Bel Air Club on several occasions. In his later years, Orsburn carved decoys which he donated to the Bel Air Club as raffle prizes and auction items at charity events. Orsburn was recognized twice as a National Living Treasure of Harford County. He was also an active member of Fork Christian Church for 70 years, where he served as a Deacon, Elder, Trustee and Sunday School Superintendent.

On September 18th, 2019 Lester Orsburn Sr. attended his last Bel Air Rotary Club meeting, where he was surprised with a 98th Birthday Celebration in his honor.

Past Rotary District Membership Chair, Ronnie Davis, presented a Paul Harris Society Award in Orsburn’s name for his 63-years of perfect attendance to his family. It was the second time Orsburn earned the award. In Recognition of Lester Orsburn’s many years of service to the Bel Air Rotary Club and the Town of Bel Air, a white oak was planted at Rockfield Manor, near a tree planted in honor of his late wife, Nellie Orsburn. A memorial plaque sits in front of Orsburn’s tree. The Bel Air Rotary Club will further honor Orsburn’s memory with a one-time $5,000 trade scholarship offered in his name to a Bel Air-area high school graduate of the class of 2020. It will be awarded to a student who plans to pursue a career in the construction industry and demonstrates a commitment to community service. The application will be sent to Bel Air-area schools and will be available at

As a member of the Bel Air Rotary Club, Orsburn was a member of Rotary International which has over 1,200 clubs in the United States and throughout the world. As an international organization, Rotary performs philanthropic acts on a worldwide basis such as the eradication of polio. Currently Rotary International is helping with aid to the Bahamas after hurricane Dorian devastated the island nation.

The Bel Air Rotary Club meets every Wednesday for lunch from 12 – 1 pm at the Maryland Golf and Country Clubs. Prospective members are welcome to attend a meeting. For more information, please visit

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