Hello District 5630 Rotarians,
July 1st is always an exciting time for Rotarians. The uniqueness of our organization is that the entire leadership from top to bottom for the most part changes. July is a time to thank and congratulate those that have lead us through the previous year and to share a vision with those that are leading us into the future. I would like to thank my dear friend Duane Tappe on a spectacular year leading our district. Our Foundation giving in 2013-14 set an all-time district record!! With that being said I also congratulate Don Peterson on an outstanding roll out of the new Rotary Foundation model. Don and his team of amazing volunteers have turned a stale unexciting process of matching and global grants into a easy way for our clubs to match dollars and do amazing things throughout our communities. Our first global grant was an amazing success. The feedback that I have received from the partner Rotarians in India is astounding. So thank you Sri Seshadri for the time and energy spent on working through this process and giving other Rotarians in our district the opportunity to do other Global Grant Projects going forward. I want to especially thank one of my mentors Dian Edwards for taking the reigns of one of my passions, Rotary Leadership Institute. RLI gives us the opportunity to learn more about the organization we all belong to and cultivate those future leaders in our clubs. Believe me there are so many other great Rotarians in every club throughout central and western Nebraska I would fill the next 12 newsletters with thanks, so know that all of you that have stepped up in your clubs or for our district have my eternal gratitude.
When I started learning about what the duties and responsibilities of a District Governor were a few years ago I realized super fast that success of Rotary at the district level is no different than at the club level. It is the outstanding team of people that make things happen! We have worked very hard to assemble what we feel is a team that will help our district to grow going forward. We have looked at the last ten years of both foundation giving and membership and we believe that setting a goal to return to the historic best in those categories is attainable. We understand that this is not going to happen over night but we believe that this is an attainable goal.
As I look into the future of Rotary in our District I see excellence and growth in every area. I see an amazing pipeline of talented leadership! I see us coming together as Nebraskans and sharing a goal of greatness. Let’s stop growing for the sake of growth, and start building an empire that we can hand down for generations to come. I do not see this coming year as my moment to shine, but as an opportunity for all of us to work together to ignite a fire across our district. We do so many great things in our clubs, and for me the gift that my friend Tim Strauser gave me 7 plus years ago when he invited me to our local meeting and sponsored my membership is one I will never be able to repay. Because, there is no better gift than an opportunity to serve our community and our world!
Let’s make the next year about celebrating the success of every member of every club. Let’s focus on the things that we do well in our communities and know that we make a difference in the lives of so many of our neighbors both locally and globally. As we think about RI President Huang’s theme, lets “light up” our achievements in our communities. Let’s hold Rotary Days and showcase the amazing volunteers that we have in our clubs. Let’s give awards to Rotarians and Non-Rotarians in our communities that go above and beyond the call. Most of all let’s remember that the next 12 months and beyond belong to all of us. Rotarians are doers! We make things happen all over the world! The more we educate our members the stronger our organization becomes.
“Light Up Rotary” is our theme, but it is more than our theme. It is how we live in Rotary, how we think in Rotary, how we feel, how we work, It is how we make a difference — every day, in every club, every district, and every country where we serve.
I look forward to visiting each of you over the next 12 months as we “Light Up” Rotary District 5630.
Yours in Service.