President Mark Killingsworth presided over today’s meeting. A.D. Hunt provided the invocation and Joe Meador provided the Pledge of Allegiance. The meeting was held at the Holiday Inn North.  
Joe Bost thanked those who helped with today’s meeting. He also reported that Steve Ramp and his wife are becoming residents of an assisted living center in Starkville.
Mark then introduced Matthew Rumph and announced that his membership application was recently approved by the board. Matthew was then installed as the club’s newest member. Matt is originally from Illinois. He has been a Rotarian before and helped his club establish a RYLA program. He is currently the Executive Director for The Family YMCA.
Mark then introduced today’s guest speaker, Mattie Codling. Mattie is the Director of Collections and Exhibitions at the Walter Anderson Museum of Art in Ocean Springs. Mattie joined the Museum’s staff in April 2016.
The mission of the Museum is to empower lifelong curiosity and connection to the natural world through the art of Walter Anderson and kindred artists. The Museum was opened in 1991. In addition to two thousand pieces of Anderson’s work, the Museum offers a variety of programming and educational programs to the community. These include summer camps, the Walter Anderson weekend, school tours, adult and children educational programs, and a community garden.
Mattie says Anderson was one of three brothers born to affluent parents in New Orleans. Walter was born in 1903. He was classically trained at the New York Fine Art school and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art. He earned a scholarship for his work and was able to visit France and Spain.
He married in 1933. He and his wife had two children. In 1937 he was diagnosed with a Bi-Polar disorder. He underwent treatment at several hospitals and institutions. While undergoing treatment, he forgot how to draw. He came out of treatment in 1940. He and his wife moved in with her parents. Walter became the sole caregiver of their two children. Taking care of them helped him in his recovery.
He was well known in the Ocean Springs area for his many and long sojourns to Horn Island. Here he met the intersection of art and nature which greatly influenced his art. His wife said he was a mystic and connected art, history, literature, music, and different cultures, incorporating these into his work.
Fifteen years after his death, his wife broke the lock on The Little Room, which Anderson kept private for many years. The Little Room was moved to the current Museum’s location and the Museum was built around it. They can control the temperature and humidity, preserving Anderson’s extensive work discovered in The Little Room.
The Museum is open from 11:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 1:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. on Sundays. Mattie invited everyone to plan a visit to the Museum.
Mark thanked Mattie for today’s presentation. He announced that a representative from the Smithsonian Institute will be the featured guest on October 27. He also noted that a Kollege of Knowledge is being put together by Mike Ratliff, Wes Brooks, Maura McLaughlin, and Erin Granberry. It will be held beginning at 10:30 a.m. on October 20. All Red Badge members are encouraged to attend.
Rotary board meetings will be scheduled for the third Tuesday of each month and will be held immediately after the membership meeting.
There being no further business to come before the club, Mark thanked those who were able to attend today’s meeting both in person and by Zoom and adjourned the meeting with our motto: “Service Above Self.”