The Rotary Club of Bedford has three scholarships for graduating high school seniors:
  • The Rayford Williams Scholarship, a $1,500 annual award for four years. Selection criteria: student attending a 4-year school, exceptional character, strong community service, financial need, Rotary participation not required but should be considered, Bedford Resident, Male or Female
  • The Philip McGovern Scholarship, $500 one time award, for a Bedford senior going to study at Middlesex Community College. Selection criteria: community service, Bedford Resident, Male or Female
  • The Bedford Rotary Club Craftsmanship Award, for a graduating Bedford senior from Shawsheen Valley Technical High School pursuing a trade or craft - $1,000 one time.
The recipients of the Rayford Williams and Philip McGovern scholarships are selected by the CSF of Bedford Dollars for Scholars organization but are funded by the Bedford Rotary Foundation.

Rayford Williams

Ray Williams was a charter member of the Bedford Rotary Club.  Despite living in Melrose, he was a regular fixture in Bedford.  He was always deeply involved in all Club activities, especially those that involved children.  When he passed away, the Club decided to name the annual four year scholarship in his memory.  Professionally he was a life insurance salesman.

Philip McGovern

Phil McGovern was another charter member.  He was the unofficial co-treasurer and sergeant-at-arms for years though never officially holding either title.  He was always the first one at the meeting, set up the room and collected the money at the door.  Back then it was pay as you go.  The club didn't start quarterly billing until many years later.  When he passed away, the Club decided to name the MCC scholarship in his name.  Phil owned the building and ran a package store at the corner of South Road and the Great Road for many years.  He eventually sold it to the Bolands.

The Bedford Rotary Club Craftsmanship Award

The Shawsheen award started some years later.  Larry Carlton had been to the Lexington Club a number of times.  They had a program to fund a Lexington student at Minuteman Tech. to provide them with the tools or equipment needed to get them started in their vocation.  He brought the idea back to the Bedford Board of Directors who decided to start a similar program in Bedford.  The intent was to provide a $500 award to a Bedford student, graduating from Shawsheen Tech., to buy the tools or equipment to get them started (getting input from the shop at Shawsheen on what the student would need).