Posted by Jim Fitzgerald
The Marshall Rotary club wanted the first president of the club, Ike Hochwald, to be the first district governor from the club, in 1921, but Ike felt that he was not able or experienced enough to accept the position and withdrew, and threw his support to another candidate from San Antonio.
In 1931 the club again nominated a candidate who was a close friend of Ike Hochwald, and who had served as president of the club in 1921-22.  Frank Davis then became the first Rotary District Governor from Marshall Texas, in 1931-32, and served as the governor of District 48, which encompassed nearly half the entire state of Texas.
Frank was a charter member of the Marshall Rotary club, and a director for the first two years, of its existence.  He was owner of the Marshall Mill and Elevator Company, one of the founders of the Builder Association of Marshall, a director of the first national bank, and was credited with saving the College of Marshall from closure in 1928.
His Rotary accomplishments are almost impossible to comprehend.   Just listing them would not do him justice, because it was not so much what he did but when he did them.  During his year as club president, the club was active in dozens of projects and supported numerous issues vital to the club and good of Marshall.
He was a good businessman and avid supporter of youth programs including the YMCA, farm loans for children to raise livestock or crops, the boy Scouts to have a campground, the club to sponsor a troop, the city to have proper street lighting, paved streets, and a first-class education system and facilities, and the courage to speak out against the Klan.
For instance, when the club embarked on the Student Loan Fund in 1923, to help deserving students pursue a college education, Frank led the effort to raise enough money to start it, then when additional money was needed to expand it, he contributed additional money to the fund, and challenged others to do the same, so that more students could benefit from the program.
Frank set up a fifty-dollar gift to the Student Loan Fund for every time the club had 100% attendance, and continually goaded them to try and earn it, thereby putting thousands of dollars into the fund over the first few years of that project.
As district governor he traveled thousands of miles on trains, buses, and by car to visit the clubs in his district, encouraging the weakest clubs, recognizing the successes of good clubs, and praising the accomplishments of the best clubs.  He was an outstanding speaker and motivator.  In 1942 he posted a $500 award for the first Texas flier to bomb Japan, which was given in June, three months after his death, to a flier from Ennis, Texas.
He was given a beautiful Globe of the world as a gift of appreciation, which will be on display at the Centennial Banquet, in June, and he will certainly be remembered when we “Celebrate a Century of Changing Lives in Marshall – and Beyond”, August 24, 2019, at the Marshall Convention Center.