Another Rotary Moment

For our Rotary Moment, President Melanie asked me to share with you, what my proudest accomplishment was during my year as President in 2010-11.

Leading Club 14 into its second 100 years was an awesome responsibility. Rotary’s a commitment, that gives far more than you can give to it. It’s an exercise in passion. We work together as volunteers, giving up time with our family and businesses, to make our community a better place to live. You get to see the incredible impact that members, with a fire in their belly and an idea in their brain, can make on society.

So of course I have a few highlights: Our International theme that year was BIGGER, BETTER, BOLDER – Clearly a theme from an American President. That’s compared to this year’s gentler theme “Light up Rotary.”

Every week we highlighted as many of the club’s members as possible. Our secret “Did you Know” moment identified interesting and off-beat facts about 75 of our Rotarians. We also had comedy routines, chicken impersonators, good fine masters and growth in the number of greeters. We figured the more handshakes the better.

We focused on BIG FUN by offering amazing fellowship experiences from wine tasting to the Symphony, from Rotary Dine Around to Fireside chats. Our club grew by 35, to end the year at 311 members. And they were active, with most all Rotarians serving on committees.

We were even able to complete multiple World Fellowship projects in the Dominican Republic, Namibia, Pakistan and Guatemala.

The programs were the BEST too. From Nebraska’s Astronaut Clay Anderson, Yankee Pitcher Joba Chamberlin, and CEOs like Angie Muhleisen, Christie Hinrichs, John Olsson and Clay Smith, to interesting personalities like Jim McKee and Howard Buffett, we had an incredible lineup. We also had world-class performers from the Lied Center and the symphony.

And then there were the behind the scenes, not so sexy or fun – the stuff that kept us up late at night like ushering in a new dues structure to put the club in a much better financial position; negotiating a new facility contract after repeated problems; and dissecting the clubs funding streams which eventually launched as our giving strategy.

With all this, my proudest accomplishment was simply serving as a catalyst to help every Rotarian practice “service above self” for our club, our community, our country and our world. Thank you!!