Recap of February 14, 2017, Meeting
President Kevin Nichols welcomed all to the February 14, 2017, meeting of the Rotary Club of Golden at 7:15 am with an invocation and the Pledge of Allegiance.  The 4-Way Test was postponed until the induction of new members.
  1. Bethany Thomas:  Deacon at Calvary representing the Golden Rescue Fund.
  2. Wendy Renee:  Wendy is a loan officer with Advanced Mortgage Solutions and has an application pending.  She is a guest of Rita Smith.
  3. Susan Davis:  Suzy is Jim Smith’s sister, visiting from Maine.  She founded the Stanley Museum when the Stanley School was being closed.
  4. Dick Bailey:  Dick is a guest of Tom Niver, and this is his second meeting
  5. Bruce Aaron:  Bruce is the Area 7 Assistant District Governor.
  1. George Mamalis:  We had a lot of fun at the February 9 fundraiser supporting The Rotary Foundation and the Golden Rotary Foundation.  We are still counting the money and hope to have a report next week.  Also, we are still accepting donations!
  2. Jerry Lovejoy:  We have 8 nonprofit organizations nominated for this year’s Ethics in Business and 10 “for profit” organizations.  We could still use a few more nonprofit nominations if you’re interested.  Here's a LINK to help you.     Be on the lookout soon for a letter from Larry Hall about the revival and expansion of the Golden Rotary Business Directory.  Finally, on Thursday at 7:30 a.m., there will be an EIB meeting at Pat Madison’s office.
  3. Allen Gregory:  Allen invited Bethany, representing the Golden Rescue Fund, to come forward to receive our annual support check for $2,000.  This fund helps Golden area folks who are in crisis or need emergency assistance.  People access this fund through the Golden Police Department and work with Bethany and her team for specific support.
What flowers do you never give out on Valentine’s Day?  Cauliflower.
  1. Steve Jensen:  Steve is happy to see Dick and Bethany with us today.  He missed last week’s meeting because he was in a trial with Abe Ritter (former governor Ritter’s son, his first felony case, which they won!).  Steve and Lori then left for Chicago to see son Grady perform.  They also hooked up with family members and enjoyed several other plays and musicals as well as an evening with Second City.  What a great trip!
  2. Peggy Halderman:  Peggy shared that the Board of Education has decided to close Pleasant View Elementary.  The pilot project of a “fresh food pantry” in Pleasant View is getting rave reviews.  Questions about where the fresh food pantry would land have generated a lot of interest to help by Tom Gould who attends New Hope Community Church.  We may need help in building a new facility.  So, if you want to help swing a hammer, Peggy knows where you can help.
  3. Jim Halderman:  What Peggy did not share with you is the fact that the School Board engaged in a lot of discussion about the Golden Backpack Program and the fresh food pantry in particular.  They wanted assurance that it would follow the children.  District staff pointed out that these programs belong to the private nonprofit Golden Backpack Program.
  4. Jim Malone:  A crew of Russ Sindt, Tom Hughes, Bob Ritter, Don Bleyle, and Jan/Jim Malone cleaned up 8 large bags of trash off Old Golden Rotary.  Job well done!  Thanks, Team.
  5. Brian Richy:  Brian gave two happy bucks.  The first is for Teiko’s grandmother, who a week ago today passed away just shy of her 106th birthday.  She was born before the sinking of the Titanic, the opening of Panama Canal, and Babe Ruth’s first professional baseball game.  Wednesday the family will be putting her to rest.  The second happy buck is in honor of the collegiate baseballs season that opens this weekend!  Off to Vegas!
  6. George Mitchell:  Mines basketball!!  George is delighted to report that Mines’ basketball won their 20th game this past Saturday (record is 20/4).  George was pleased to see a number of Golden Rotarians in attendance to celebrate their win!  Thanks, Tom Hughes and Jamie Sheridan!
  7. Jim Smith:  Jim was very happy that the former rector of Calvary, John Wengrovius, was honored by the Golden Chamber with the Volunteer Award at their awards event recently.  John event gave a great “sermon”! Jim also gave a happy buck to Mic DeMin helping him distribute plants from the FlowerPower event. 
  8. Mic DeMin:  Mic said he really enjoyed delivering all 250 plants throughout Golden with Jim Smith.   It was an amazing experience to do that.  At the end Jim tossed Mic the key to his Tesla for a quick ride around with Mic’s kids.  The kids totally loved it.  They called it a “SPY CAR” because it was so quiet!!
Suzy pulled Tom Hughes’ number but Tom did not pull the right marble!  Got a Rotary ball cap as a consolation prize.
Tom Hughes invited Jamie Sheridan to come forward to receive recognition for his next level, a Paul Harris Fellow +3.  Congratulations, Jamie!  Very generous of you. Thanks.
Today’s program was presented by DG.Bill Downes.  DG Bill founded Evergreen Commercial Group which is the largest full-service commercial brokerage specializing in Colorado Foothills property.  His business history includes being a Certified Commercial Investment Member, member o the Denver Metro Commercial Association of Realtors, a graduate of Leadership Evergreen, a member of the Conifer and Evergreen Chambers.  Bill became a Rotarian in 2005 and is a member of Mountain Foothills Rotary Club.  As the Rotarian of the Year in 2009, he became an Assistant Governor in 2011 and an active member of the Membership Team. Active with the district (membership team).
DG Bill shared how proud he is to be a Rotarian.  All of his best friends are in Rotary, and Rotary is his passion.  It’s what he does, what makes him.  He is honored and privileged to serve us this year.  He then explained the following:
What is District 5450?  What does it do?
  • First the role of the district is to support the clubs.  It’s what the district does.  With up to 150 people available to help, they fall into one of two sides:
  1. Operations Side – This consists of the Assistant District Governors who are responsible for managing a specific group of clubs.  The next level are Chairs of about 30 committees (with generally assistant chairs). 
  2. Foundation Side – There is an overall Chair with additional chairs for about 20 committees. 
  • Second, the District has a role to train leaders, which is where a lot of dues go to help prepared our evolving leadership from the club through higher levels.
Additionally, at the District level, we support other Rotary International efforts such as the new branding initiative.  The importance of this branding process is to get ready for the elimination of polio.  The world needs to recognize just what Rotary has accomplished, and this “master brand” is part of the strategy to make sure the world recognizes what we have done.   By the way, we had been without a new case of polio until last week when one new case was reported in Afghanistan in 2017.  Now more than ever we need to remain committed and focused on the elimination of polio.  Then we need to celebrate and welcome the recognition of the role of Rotarians around the world for this major accomplishment. 
Other things that the district does incLude:
  • Managing grants totaling $500,000.  $300,000 of that money was from what we gave 3 years ago and are broken into two pots:  $150k to matching District grants; $150 for Global Grants.  Recently we began exploring how to engage smaller clubs who have no money but have “sweat equity” that they can offer.  Finally, there is an additional $200,000 available to help shift up the emphasis on global grants. 
  • District manages the Youth Exchange that sends out/brings in 19 young people.  We also support the Vocational Training Teams (VTT) with the purpose of looking at procedures that can be employed effectively in country.  You could say that the VTT teams are “trial balloons” for possible global grants.
  • Don’t forget the upcoming District Conference in Colorado Springs (April 28-20) at Cheyenne Mountain Resort followed by the Rotary International Conference in Atlanta (June 10-14).
  • The District is part of 34 zones around the Rotary world with membership being balanced every 8 years.  It looks like Rotary has grown but not in North America.  North America will lose 2 zones (or 1 Rotary Director) in favor of India and Southeast Asia.
The first question came about whether and how the District can support clubs to do projects that transcend one club.  DG Bill pointed out a club-based program – Crutches4Africa (started by our own Dave Talbot).  They collect mobility devices and then ship them to Africa.  Indeed, if you have mobility devices, get them to Dave (DG Bill will even pick them up!) for a March 11 load that will go to Pakistan!  For similar projects, the District is more than happy to help facilitate. 
The next question was about whether DG Bill would ever consider convening a project that fosters collaboration among the various service organizations.  DG Bill said that there is no formal program but that he has actually held such a local project from his Rotary Club.  Good idea, but it still needs focus and help.
The next question is about why Rotary isn’t growing in North America.  DG Bill explained what he calls the “membership continuum.”  Beginning with RYLA, we get kids engaged in Interact Clubs.  Then they graduated, and we don’t see as much engagement in Rotaract. Students are busy.  Then along come the young professionals who are engaged in their families and businesses.  However, post-kids, well, folks begin to start returning to Rotary.  Yet by then folks are older. 
So, how are we fighting this?  One way is through an idea that came out of our “junior counselors” from RYLA.  They wanted a way to stay in touch, engaged, and in action.  So they are creating a “satellite” club off of Rotary eClub One called “Rotaraction.”  They want a way to be “in service” and engaged wherever they are….at home, at school, or around the world.  They would like a way to find out what Rotary Clubs are doing on a specific day, time, and location.  This “app” is in design to accomplish just that!
Finally, DG Bill shared with club members that he is personally committed to the final eradication of Polio, so we need to continue to raise money.  The other personal initiative for him is supporting the awareness/information/and action about the importance of immunization for kids.  He doesn’t want an outbreak of measles on his watch!
President Kevin  thanked DG Bill for his talk.  Kevin noted that the District is doing amazing, important work and we appreciate the support that the District in general and DG Bill, specifically, gives our club.  President Kevin then presented the District Governor with a certificate in his name for financial support to Pleasant View Elementary School as they close out their final year with a bang!
Pat then shared with members that next week we will have the privilege of hearing from Bob Rose from Evergreen Rotary about “Surprising Trends in War and Peace: Have we learned anything?"
President Kevin closed the meeting with a quote from Riba McEntire:  To succeed in life, you need three things:  a wishbone, a backbone, and a funny bone.