Rotary News
Rotary’s World Polio Day event looks ahead to ending the disease for good
While the fight to eradicate polio suffered a blow this year when the virus re-emerged in Nigeria, Rotary leaders and top health experts focused Monday on the big picture: the global presence  of the paralyzing disease has never been smaller. The headquarters of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, served as the site of Rotary’s fourth annual World Polio Day event. Some of the biggest names in the polio eradication campaign were there to reflect on the year’s progress and discuss what’s needed to end the disease for good. More than 200 people...
Virtual reality films bring new dimension to polio fight
At this year’s World Polio Day celebration in Atlanta, Rotary is harnessing the power of virtual reality technology to build empathy and inspire action in our fight to eradicate polio. Rotary, with support from the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, produced a virtual reality film that tells the story of Alokita, a young adult who suffered paralysis from polio as a child growing up in India, which has been polio-free since 2011. “When you open your eyes and see a different environment around you, you relate to the subject on a visceral, personal level,” says Vincent Vernet, direct of digital and...
Rotary Day at UN highlights role of business in building a better world
From the United Nations’ earliest days in the aftermath of World War II, the organization’s humanitarian mission has always dovetailed with Rotary’s efforts to administer aid and build peace. This year’s Rotary Day at the United Nations, 12 November, will highlight the role businesses can play in that collaboration as we work toward a more just and equitable world. The theme of this year’s gathering at UN headquarters in New York City, “Responsible Business, Resilient Societies,” recognizes Rotary’s role at the intersection of commerce and cause. As leaders in their professions and...
ShelterBox prepares for Mosul refugees
Today marked the start of the battle to take control of Mosul back from the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS. The city is the group's last major stronghold in Iraq. But humanitarian aid agencies have known about the military offensive, giving them an unusual opportunity to prepare for the crisis. "It is rare for the world to get early warning of a vast human catastrophe," says Chris Warham, chief executive of ShelterBox. "The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees issued a paper in July saying this would likely be the biggest humanitarian crisis of the year — and we better get...
Skydivers raise thousands for polio eradication
The first time Noel Jackson jumped out of a plane at 14,000 feet, it had nothing to do with raising money for polio eradication. The Michigan dentist had received a gift certificate to go skydiving from his staff because they knew he was into adventure. “It is definitely a defining moment,” says Jackson, a member of the Rotary Club of Trenton, Michigan, USA, of that first jump, done in tandem strapped to a professional skydiver. “The rush of the free fall is beyond anything I have ever experienced before. Just the speed and acceleration is unbelievable. You don’t even have time to figure out...
Club Information

We are a strong, participative membership giving of our time, talent and treasury in innovative ways to enhance the living environment of the Grosse Pointes, the surrounding communities, and, through Rotary Int’l and District 6400, the world at large.

Grosse Pointe

Service Above Self

We meet Wednesdays at 5:30 PM
War Memorial Reception Room
32 Lake Shore Rd
Grosse Pointe Farms, MI  48236
United States
District Site
Venue Map
Home Page Stories

Jeff Jay, center, founder of Love First: Intervention and Recovery Services, was the guest speaker at the Sept. 14 meeting of Rotary of Grosse Pointe. He and fellow guest Steve Anderson, right, was welcomed by President Ted Everingham, left.

Jeff grew up in Grosse Pointe and was an alter boy, president of his class and merit scholar. By age 26, he was an alcoholic and drug addict, living in a park in California.  His recovery began when his family held an intervention and got him into treatment.  

Although many think addiction is a will power issue, it is actually a medical problem requiring treatment.  When one develops a chemical dependency, the drugs he/she takes (alcohol or other), react differently in their system.  It becomes perceived as a need, not a choice.

Jeff believes it is up to all of us to intervene when there is an addiction issue.  Loving intervention requires paying attention to the details, following through in the recovery process, and accountability (changing one’s own environment to assist in the recovery).    

Jeff, and his wife Debra, have a book on the subject titled Love First, A Family’s Guide to Intervention.
(Photo by George R. McMullen Jr.)


At the Sept. 14 meeting of Grosse Pointe Rotary, Mike Carmody (not shown) inducted Maria Kokas, left, who was sponsored by Peter Stroh, right.  Maria is the Director of Learning Systems and Resources for the Henry Ford Health System and resides in Grosse Pointe Park.  (Photo by George R. McMullen Jr.)



The Hon. Frank Szymanski, 3rd Circuit Court, Juvenile Division, was the guest speaker at the Sept. 7 meeting of Grosse Pointe Rotary. Judge Szymanski believes that the single biggest problem facing our community is kids not being in school. He believes this to be the driving force behind many other problems, including crime, homelessness, and poverty.  

He is very proactive and some of his outreach programs include: 1) KKIS – Keep Kids in School.  He believes that zero tolerance was well-intentioned but with bad results.  For the kids to not feel degraded or unwanted, every attempt should be made to keep them in school.  2) KAREN – Kids Are Reading Every Night.  Reading at least 20 minutes every night helps a child learn to read and to develop a lifelong love of it. 3) Teach Transcendental Meditation and yoga to juvenile offenders as a way to self-regulate.  4) Guitars Not Guns.  A program to teach music to at risk youth.  5) A Youth Deterrent Program in which life offenders counsel at risk youth on the consequences of crime.

Judge Szymanski is also the author of the book, Identity Design: Design the Identity You Need to Get the Life You Want.
Below, Rotary President Ted Everingham with Judge Szymanski at the club's meeting.
Photos by George R. McMullen Jr.

At the club's Sept. 7 meeting, Sebastian, Grosse Pointe Rotary's youth exchange student from Taiwan, was introduced to the club by Rotarians Bill Scott, above, and Steve McMillan, below. He will be living with Rotarian Michelle Roberts’s family and attending Grosse Pointe South High School. A picnic was scheduled at the Farms Pier Park on Sept. 15 to meet Sebastian and get to know him better. 
Grosse Pointe Rotary President Ted Everingham, left, and guest speaker Judge Frank Szymanski, right, also welcomed Sebastian to Grosse Pointe. 
(Photos by George R. McMullen Jr.)

Rotary District Gov. Sue Goldsen, above, was the guest speaker at the Aug. 10 meeting of Rotary of Grosse Pointe. She was welcomed, below, by President Ted Everingham. Photos by George R. McMullen Jr.

Grosse Pointer Mary Lamparter introduced guest speakers Carol Borden, above, Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs Inc. founder and CEO, and regional coordinator, Jolanthe Bassett. The organization raises, trains and donates service dogs, mostly German shepherds, for veterans. The training process can last 18 months to over two years at a cost of up to $22,000/dog. The dogs can assist those who are hearing impaired, have mobility problems, or suffer from PTSD. Through sense of smell, they can anticipate good dreams from bad dreams and when an anxiety attack is about to occur. Veterans commit suicide at a rate of 22 a day and have a 90 percent divorce rate. Ms. Borden is proud to say that both of those numbers are zero for those who have been given one of their service dogs. For more information, visit
Mary Lamparter introduces the guest speaker, Carol Borden, founder of Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs.
From left, Grosse Pointe Rotary President Ted Everingham, Carol Borden, Jolanthe Bassett and Mary Lamparter.

Mike Bergman, sponsored by George McMullen, became the newest Rotarian. Mike is a former Marine who works for Ucontrol Energy and resides in Grosse Pointe Woods. Pictured with Mike, center, at the Aug. 3 induction are Past President and Past District Gov. Kim Towar and Past President Fred Ollison III.

Shirley Roseman from Detroit Rotary invited our club to participate in a Rotary-sponsored Kids Against Hunger event on Oct. 15. The goal is to make 100,000 meals and they are seeking 20 volunteers and a $2,000 donation. Visit

Grosse Pointe Farms Det. Lt. Richard Rosati, picture here with Rotary of Grosse Pointe President Ted Everingham, was the guest speaker at the club's July 27 meeting. (Photo by George R. McMullen Jr.)

Under the leadership of Dave Colton and Diane Strickler, Rotarians and family members served 71 lunches at Crossroads on July 26. For several years, this has been one of our most heart-warming community projects. When summer begins, the opportunity for a decent lunch ends for some Detroit area students. We are delighted to know that these children enjoyed a nutritious lunch. (Absent from the photo but taking part were Robert Lucas and Florence Seltzer.)

Corinne Martin, founder and executive director of the Grosse Pointe Animal Adoption Society, was the guest speaker at the July 20 meeting of Grosse Pointe Rotary. Educated in specialeducation and then working in the auto industry, it was  Martin’s love of animals that won out. She started the GPAAS 20 years ago in her garage and is currently located on Harper Avenue next to Harper Woods Veterinary Hospital. GPAAS conducts its Saturday adoption days at SOC. She is the only full time employee.
Last year, the GPAAS took in 600 animals working with Harper Woods Veterinary Hospital and with G.P. Shores, Woods and Harper Woods. It can house 25 cats and 25 dogs at a time, and the rest reside at volunteer foster homes. The foster homes are comprised of people who would like to trial run a pet with the possibility of adopting or those who like the occasional playmate for a family pet.  
With vet bills of over $100,000 a year, the GPAAS funds itself through adoption fees and donations. If anyone is looking for some exercise, the dogs need to be walked at 8 a.m., noon and 4 p.m. everyday. To volunteer, donate, or learn more, visit (Photo by Fred Ollison III)

Rotary of Grosse Pointe President Ted Everingham, center, welcomes Laurie Smolenski and Flo Wackerman as special guests at the club's July 20 meeting. Smolenski is from Grosse Pointe and has been an outbound exchange student, a Rotary Global Scholar, and is currently a Rotary Peace Fellow in Australia, at one of the five world peace centers. She is one of 50 students selected worldwide.  Side note: The Smolenski family has hosted 17 Rotary exchange students. Wackerman was a G.P. Rotary exchange student in 1998-99. Since then, he has run Rotaract (college level Rotary) in Germany and co-chaired the Rotaract portion at last year’s RI Conference He recently became a Rotarian, joining a Club in Munich. Below, Everingham and Wackerman exchange club flags. (Photos by Kim Towar)

Margaret Williamson, Executive Director of Pro Literacy Detroit, pictured with President Ted Everingham, was the guest speaker at the Wednesday, July 13, meeting of Rotary of Grosse Pointe. 

Unfortunately, Williamson told the Rotarians present, approximately 1 million Detroit and Michigan residents are unable to read, even though there are some 150 literacy organizations out there offering assistance. Pro Literacy Detroit helps adult learners 16 and over become literate. Most of the students come through referrals from fellow/former students and from work force entities, such as Focus Hope.   

Pro Literacy Detroit has used a RI grant (the first of its kind in the U.S.) to create 250 trade tutor workshops. Williamson is proud of Rotary’s participation through the Rotary Literacy Initiative and an exchange program where Australian Rotarians helped tutors in 2 six week sessions.  

Ms. Williams believes that every dedicated student, no matter at what reading level, paired with a volunteer tutor will succeed.  
(Photo by George R. McMullen Jr.)

Immediate Past President Fred Ollison III proudly shows a framed picture taken by Rotarian John Minnis at a meeting last year featuring Fred, past District Governor and Past President Kim Towar and Rotary International Director Jennifer Jones, who was visiting the club. The frame was presented by current President Ted Everingham. (Photo by George R. McMullen Jr.)

President Ted Everingham introduced Liz Vogel, a former Mount Clemens Rotary Club member, who was inducted into the Grosse Pointe Club at its July 13 meeting. Liz is the Deputy Supervisor for Clinton Township and was a member of the first Interact Club at Grosse Pointe South High School. (Photo by George R. McMullen Jr.)

2016-17 President Ted Everingham took charge of his first meeting July 6 as head of Rotary of Grosse Pointe. He also had the honor of opening the first meeting on a new day and time — Wednesdays, 5:30 p.m. — and in a new venue, the Reception Room of the Grosse Pointe War Memorial. Founded in 1937, Grosse Pointe Rotary previously met on Wednesday at noon in the Ballroom of the War Memorial until the 2016-17 year in compliance with bylaw changes unanimously approved by the club. (Photos by George R. McMullen Jr.)

Wayne County Commissioner Tim Killeen, here with President Fred Ollison III, was the guest speaker at the June 6 luncheon meeting of Grosse Pointe Rotary at the War Memorial. 
Killeen is proud to have been recently appointed to the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments (SEMCOG), whose role is to improve the quality of the region’s environmental resources, make the transportation system safer and more efficient, revitalize communities, and encourage economic development.  He believes that government’s most important job is maintaining the 
Locally, he is working with the Grosse Pointes to have the Army Corp of Engineers assess the seawalls. If they are in need of repair, water getting through could impact Lake Shore, a county road. Once completed, any cost to repair will need to be established and the source of the funds determined.
One of his biggest headaches is dealing with the building of the new jail in Detroit. With all of the money already spent, the large cost of relocating to Mound Rd, and the loss of business if county employees and the court system are moved, Killeen is a proponent of building the jail where it currently remains unfinished. The resolution of a lawsuit against the project’s architects due to cost overruns will determine what the next steps will be. (Photos by George R. McMullen Jr.)
As is the annual custom prior to the end of the school year, members of the Interact Club at Grosse Pointe South High School conducted the May 23, 2016 luncheon meeting of Grosse Pointe Rotary. (Photos by George R. McMullen Jr.)


Our 3rd annual fundraising cruise on the yacht INFINITY will be held on Wednesday, June 8, 2016, leaving from Jefferson Beach Marina at 7:00 pm.  Boarding will begin at 6:30 pm.  We return at 9:30 pm and enjoy 1/2 hour of fellowship at the dock. Tickets are $150 per person. You can make reservations by sending a check payable to "Grosse Pointe Rotary Foundation" to GP Rotary, 1125 Three Mile Drive, GP Park, MI 48230, or by registering on line and paying with a credit card.  Simply click on the image and follow the directions.  If you are a club member, enter your Clubrunner ID and password.  If you don't know them, or if you are not a club member, you will need to enter your first and last name and email address at the first screen, then "Select Options" to designate the number of tickets you want, and then the "Payment" link will ask for your credit card information.  During the cruise, we will be raffling off some fantastic prizes, and raffle tickets are $50 each.  The prizes are (1) one week in a one bedroom apartment in the Umbrian city of Citta di Castello (donated by Rich and Nancy Solak), (2) and (3) a case of fine wines to two winners (donated by Village Wine and Woods Wholesale Wine), (4) a Shinola watch (donated by George Koueiter & Sons Jewelry), and (5), (6) and (7) six $50 gift certificates to three winners for fine dining in Grosse Pointe (donated by the restaurants).


Geoff Nathan, Waye State University Professor of Linguistics, above with President Fred Ollison III, was the guest speaker at the May 16 luncheon meeting of Grosse Pointe Rotary.
Linguistics is the scientific study of language. In the gathering of data, it was found that languages can be really different from each.  This includes the sounds and structure. For example, in Japanese the verb is last in a sentence, in English it follows the subject, while in Hebrew it is always near the beginning. It is very hard to say how a language changes over time. For example, our current English is much different than early modern English (“hallowed be thy name”) which is much different than early English, which we would not even understand. 
The “parts” of linguistics are: 
1) sounds,
2) words,
3) syntax (grammar),
4) semantics (meaning),
5) historical (how it changes over time) and
6) social (reaction to what is being said).  
When speaking, don’t break the conventions of the language for the location/audience. It is the social judgments and reactions that allow one to be understood.
(Photo by George R. McMullen Jr.)

Choirmaster Steve McMillan led his fellow Rotarians in a rousing "Happy Birthday!" to President-Elect Ted Everingham at the club's May 16 luncheon meeting. Happy Birthday, Ted! (Photo by George R. McMullen Jr.)

Grosse Pointe Rotarian the Rev. Peter Henry attended a Rotary meeting in Wheaton, Ill. recently and brought back their flag.  Remember that our club has flags available to present to Clubs you visit. (Photo by George R. McMullen Jr.)

Fanny Segers, our exchange student, above and with President Fred Ollison III, was the featured speaker at the May 9 luncheon meeting of Grosse Pointe Rotary. Fanny lives just outside the city of Liege, Belgium. The country is known for its chocolate, beer, and waffles and the city is known for its train station and the Cathedral St. Paul. She is an only child and became interested in becoming an exchange student after her family hosted a student from New Zealand and another from Texas. Her Rotary District is 1630. Fanny’s school in Belgium is much smaller than Grosse Pointe South and doesn’t offer any extracurricular activities.  At South, she has participated on the cross country and track & field teams (even though she doesn’t like to run). 

Below, Fanny thanked her host families — Craig and Katherine Bates, Brandi Towar and Nycki Keating and Andor and Joan Reiber.  With these families, she was able to travel to Chicago, Florida, and Mexico, and celebrate a birthday in Ann Arbor.
Upon returning to Belgium, Fanny plans on studying Communications in Brussels and furthering her studies later in Chicago.
Photos by George R. McMullen Jr.

State Sen. Bert Johnson, left, with President Fred Ollison III, was the guest speaker at the noon luncheon meeting of Grosse Pointe Rotary. Johnson, D-Highland Park, represents Michigan’s 2nd Senate District, which includes northeast Detroit, Highland Park, Hamtramck, Harper Woods and all five Grosse Pointe communities. (Photo by George R. McMullen Jr.)