Ryan Berns 

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Tonight we were joined by Ryan Berns, a dedicated member of Rotary for over 6 months. Burns is a real estate agent at Saros Real Estate, located on the corner of Mack and Cadieux. At Saros, he focuses on selling single family homes in the five Grosse Pointes.
Ryan Berns Julia Roeder 2024-07-18 04:00:00Z 0

Dio Rockers

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Tonight, we had the pleasure of welcoming Dio Rockers, a member of Rotary for over a year. Dio has consistently contributed to our weekly meetings with his willingness to take on various responsibilities. In a town where many are lifelong residents of Grosse Pointe, Dio brings a unique perspective shaped by his trips to over 40 countries and all 50 states.
Dio Rockers Julia Roeder 2024-07-10 04:00:00Z 0

Donna Hill

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Tonight we were joined by Donna Hill from SAVeD, Save a Voiceless Dog. SAVeD is a rescue that aims to help all dogs in need, but focuses on pregnant female dogs. Pregnant female dogs are the hardest dogs to get adopted. Often if these dogs are left on the streets, pregnant, chained, unfed, unhoused and helpless. When Donna is able to get to these dogs she helps the mothers give birth to their puppies. SAVeD aims to pay the medical bills, which can be quite costly, to help these mothers safely give birth. 

Donna Hill Julia Roeder 2024-06-12 04:00:00Z 0

Michael Tengler

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At just 16 years old Michael Tengler started a non-profit, Happycheeks, aimed to help the unhoused. Since starting in 2020, Happycheeks has now donated over 24,000 pairs of socks and underwear with the help of the community. 

Michael Tengler Julia Roeder 2024-06-06 04:00:00Z 0

Scholarship Night

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Nine outstanding students from Grosse Pointe South and Grosse Pointe North have been honored with scholarships from the Rotary Club. These scholarships, wille support these students as they pursue their college education in prestigious Universities like Michigan State University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Michigan and more.
Scholarship Night Julia Roeder 2024-05-22 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Todd Linton

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On Wednesday, May 1st, we were joined by Todd Linton, one of our newest Rotary Club members and a red badger. He shared with us a presentation about himself and his family and allowed us to get to know him more. 
Todd is a Grosse Pointe Farms resident who currently works with Hillyard Co. a floor-finishing company for NCAA basketball courts. He is married with three children ages thirteen, nine, and four.
His first job as a teenager was working at a bakery where he learned the fundamentals of working hard and the importance of work ethic. The knowledge he gained from working at this bakery he careered through to his career in tech. After making a career change from working in the Casino business for SHFL Entertainment, he found himself working for NILFISK, working to repair and clean vacuums. This job taught him community in work, something he values greatly. 
Even at his current position at Hillyard Co., he carries with him the skills and values that he has gained from his variety of positions. Welcome Todd Linton to the Rotary Club!
Presenter - Todd Linton Isabella Haindl 2024-05-01 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Linda Boyle

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Linda Boyle, Local Artist
Linda grew up in Grosse Pointe and obtained a degree in landscape architecture as MSU.  She used her artistic talents to hand draw landscape illustrations until the 2008 
economic downturn.  She then acquired graphic design certificates andworked for the Red Wings for 9 years, until pursuing painting full time in 2018.  Linda did this until Covid hit, requiring her to find full-time employment with the City of GP Park, where she was able to use her artistic talents, coming up with the City’s new logo. Since 2023, Linda is back to painting full time.  
On the business side, Linda makes money at juried shows and outdoor art fairs, but both require fees to have exhibits.  She also sells her artwork through galleries and social media and is commissioned to paint.  She is constantly learning, by attending exhibits of famous painters like Dali, Monet, and O’Keeffe and by attending classes, workshops, and presentations.  
With painting as her career, she is constantly inspired by day-to-day activities, but especially by traveling, pointing out recent trips to Glacier National Park and Africa.  Linda is very excited about her new studio in the Pioneer Building in Detroit and will soon be teaching an oil painting class.
www.lsbdesign.com (http://www.lsbdesign.com/)
Presenter - Linda Boyle Isabella Haindl 2024-04-24 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Danielle Caralis and Linda Zublick

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Grosse Pointe Theatre’s Board of Directors President Danielle Caralis and Executive Director Linda Zublick.
The Grosse Pointe Theatre was formed in 1948 by Russell Werneken, a 22-year-old drama teacher. It began with 30 members and now numbers 300 to 400 in any given year.
In its first 25 years, the organization would rehearse and perform anywhere, until the War Memorial Fries Auditorium opened in 1962.  It continued to perform at that location until their last play, Beauty and the Beast, in 2017.  Since then, GP Theatre has performed in schools, churches, and community centers.  
In 1982, GP Theatre purchased a building on Fisher Rd, which has had many renovations over the years, and is now their administrative and ticket offices, its rehearsal home, and its set building location.  Besides main stage productions, the organization also hosts youth camps and productions where children build confidence and learn life skills. It also offers sensory sensitivity programs for those with cognitive disabilities to enjoy.
The committed membership is looking forward to adding to the 353 stage plays conducted over the years at the new Schaap Performing Arts Center. The location will have 424 seats with state-of-the-art lighting and world-class acoustics.
Its next play will be Disney’s Newsies, running from May 3rd to May 12th at Parcells Middle School. To learn more or buy tickets, go to www.gpt.org (http://www.gpt.org/).
Presenters - Danielle Caralis and Linda Zublick Isabella Haindl 2024-04-17 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Sandy McMechan

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The newest member of Rotary is Sandy McMechan whose mentored by Bob Lucas. Sandy has spent many years contributing to the Grosse Pointe community, welcome Sandy!
New Member - Sandy McMechan Isabella Haindl 2024-04-03 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Michelle Boggess-Nunley

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Michelle Boggess-Nunley, owner of Posterity Art Gallery
After being treated graciously be a GP homeowner where her car stalled on the way to an enjoyable job
interview at the CCD (her employer for 14 years), Ms. Borgess-Nunley knew she wanted to remain in Grosse Pointe.  When the opportunity arose to become the owner of Posterity Art Gallery a year and a half ago, she jumped at it.
As an internationally known artist, Ms. Borgess-Nunley was well associated with the Gallery as she spent over 3 months during the pandemic, sitting at its front window, drawing a world record breaking maze. To officially break the record, one of the many requirements is that the drawing had to be witnessed and videotaped.  When finished, it measured 1,126 feet long. She has loved drawing mazes since she was a child.
As the owner of Posterity, Ms. Borgess-Nunley is promoting local living emerging and well-known artists through community events, and public art displays. Its framing business, with its own woodworking shop, offers high quality frames.
www.boggessart.com (http://www.boggessart.com/)
www.posterityartgallery.com (http://www.posterityartgallery.com/)
 (located in The Village)
Presenter - Michelle Boggess-Nunley Isabella Haindl 2024-04-03 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Roger Hull

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Roger Hull – Impressions from his recent trip to southern Africa.
Roger and Jeanie Hull vacationed in Africa from January 7th to the 23rd after an 18-hour plane ride from Detroit to Atlanta to Cape Town, South Africa.  The City was founded by the Dutch in 1652 and earned its independence from the UK in 1910.  While there, they traveled to Stellenbosch and wine country, climbed Table Mountain, went to the Cape of Good Hope, and visited Robben Island, where Nelson
Mandela spent 17 years in prison.  The prison is now a museum.
The next part of their trip took them to Victoria Falls and Matobo National Park in Zimbabwe, then on to Botswana, where Roger presented great close-up pictures of animals from the safari they went on.  They finished up by going to Pretoria and Johannesburg, where they visited Kapama Game Preserve and the township of Soweto.
Despite suffering tremendous poverty and unemployment, Roger said that Africa is beautiful, and the people could not have been nicer.  If it wasn’t an such a long plane ride, he would consider annual trips to the continent.
Presenter - Roger Hull Isabella Haindl 2024-03-27 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Mark Mals

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Mark Mals, Executive Director of the Mercy Education Project.
The organization’s mission is to provide the tools for educational equity, economic stability and mobility; and cultural enrichment opportunities for women and girls who have limited access to resources
– empowering them as they work towards a brighter future.
Formed in 1992, the MEP is located at Trumbull and Howard and primarily serves southwest Detroit. Since its formation, it continues its core purpose, which is to help girls and women with reading and math through its volunteers. The organization has a budget of $1.25 million, which is 70% financed through government funds and 30% through private donations/grants.
Due to the hardships faced by many of their students, it is hard for them to recognize their potential, let alone try to reach it. The safe space offered by the MEP gives them a chance to focus on bettering themselves, and not just surviving. As a former philosophy teacher at U of D Jesuit, Mr. Mals believes in Plato’s pursuit of perfection, making oneself better every day, even if it is something that can never be fully attained.
To learn more, please visit www.mercyed.net (http://www.mercyed.net/).
Presenter - Mark Mals Isabella Haindl 2024-03-20 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Stephen Ahles

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Stephen Ahles – Project SMART for Rotary Clubs
Mr. Ahles is leading the fight against opioid addiction through community naloxone training and Project SMART.  Over 1 million people in the U.S. have died due to opioid overdoses in the past 10 years.  
Project SMART is designed to address all the issues with drug addiction, and to eradicate it. It’s an acronym for School Education, Medicine and Drug Disposal, Awareness, Recovery, and Treatment.  Mr. Ahles’ focus was on school education, where there has been a 169% increase in fentanyl overdose deaths from 2019 to 2023.  He works with Drug Free Clubs of America to educate high school students. The second focus was on proper medicine disposal, where drugs are not stolen or get into our water supply.  A kiosk has been placed in the lobby of the GP Woods Public Safety Dept. where unused drugs can be deposited and are exposed to a charcoal substance that renders them unusable.  When the kiosk is full, it is shipped to a facility for incineration.   The goal is to place a kiosk in every city nationwide that has a Rotary chapter.
To learn more about the Rotary Action Group for Addiction Prevention, go to www.rag-ap.org (http://www.rag-ap.org/).
Presenter - Stephen Ahles  Isabella Haindl 2024-03-13 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Linda Smith

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Last night we were joined by Linda Smith, President of U Snap Bac, a non-profit operating in the City of Detroit for 38 years providing services to create healthy neighborhoods, advance racial equity, increase housing stability, and affordable homeownership. Linda has been part of the organization since June 10th, 1995, and has been the president of U Snap Bac for 29 years.

Recently, U Snap Bac has established 64 units of affordable housing by Mac between Alter Road and Wayburn. Linda was part of the first affordable and sustainable home projects in Detroit. Starting with a marketing budget of $0, and through sole word of mouth, Linda has helped find buyers interested in their new housing units. U Snap Bac provided a year-long course for the new home buyers of those units that were once a week and helped these people manage their homes and stay residents, some for over 20 years.

On the west side of Alter Road, Linda partnered with the northeast guide center and helped them obtain the land from residents, to build new housing for families with mental illnesses who are now able to seek help right on the site. There are 10 units of affordable housing she has helped attain land behind for right behind the Rite Aid on Alter. One of U Snap Bac’s missions is to work with families purchasing a home for the first time, or people who have never owned a home for longer than three years, to get a grant of $25,000. They also help find all sorts of resources to keep families in their homes. The organization is also launching a home repair grant, along with a senior citizens program help that's helped 25 seniors get up to $2,000 in grants to help them improve the conditions of their homes. 

U Snap Bac invites speakers and volunteers from all over to help residents with everything from wealth management, to home ownership, and estate planning. Many people in Detroit are living in homes left to them by their parents, but these homes are owned by the land bank. Linda has tried to help these people become homeowners. Instead of telling these people what they need to change about their house, her new approach is to show them ways that are safer and healthier, taking a step back and not assuming that she has all the answers. 

Word of mouth is their main type of communication, but they have just launched a hotline for people to call who are looking for resources to help them. Rotary can help by volunteering, from distributing food on Saturdays to coming in to speak and give advice on wealth management and homeownership at their office.

Presenter - Linda Smith Isabella Haindl 2024-03-07 05:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Nicole and Bob Deem

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Nicole & Bob Deem: Learning to Live & Thrive with PTSD

PTSD is a psychiatric disorder that may occur in people who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event, series of events, or a set of circumstances.  Mr. Deem’s PTSD is the result of what he experienced during his years as a firefighter.  
Symptoms of the disorder may include nightmares (where the individual’s mind has them suffering the event again), flashbacks, social anxiety, and altered moods.  When Mr. Deem had one of these nightmares, he was not able to function the next day and it took some time for Mrs. Deem to come to grips with this.  What has allowed her to thrive are a good therapist, faith, a strong church community, a service dog, medication, a strong trusting marriage, and having a purpose.  
The Deems rely greatly on the two service dogs they have owned.  To be a service dog, it must be trained to perform a specific task that mitigates a specific disability for a specific person. They stressed that these dogs should be treated like medical equipment, such as wheelchairs, and need to be accommodated in public buildings and basically ignored to be allowed to perform their task.
Presenters - Nicole and Bob Deem Isabella Haindl 2024-02-15 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Steven Tengler

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Steve Tengler: The SET Fund: Rebuilding Michigan – one scholarship at a time.
With a $2,000 inheritance, Steve and Elizabeth Tengler started an education fund in 1998, which has continuously grown since then.  Each year, the SET Fund provides scholarships to Michigan residents attending Michigan colleges. They are awarded based on financial need and community involvement to applicants who live in the state and plan to enroll in or are currently enrolled in an undergraduate program at a Michigan college or university.
The Fund has given out 38 scholarships totaling $177,500, with a typical finalist being a child of a single parent earning $30,000/year.  The hardships suffered by some of the recipients are staggering, yet the students find a way to still help others.  The Fund’s goal is to reach $1 million dollars with the hope that the students, upon graduation, will live, work, and continue to volunteer in Michigan.
A wine tasting fundraiser will take place on 9/14 at the Windmill Pointe Park’s Tompkin’s Center.
www.setfund.org (http://www.setfund.org/)
Presenter - Steven Tengler Isabella Haindl 2024-02-08 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Cissie Cappola

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 Cissie Cappola: New Member Presentation
John Mozena introduced Cissie and provided us with a brief background. She was born and raised in GP Farms, spent some time as a ski bum in Colorado, lived in the Chicago area for 45 years, and came back to live in Grosse Pointe for the last four.
Cissie shared the impact of a stroke she experienced in September 2021. While having drinks with friends she started speaking gibberish and was immediately taken to the hospital.  Fortunately, she was able to receive the tPA IV, but it still took her days to have limited speech. After two weeks of rehab, with her ability to speak being the most difficult to return, she was sent home.  A urinary tract infection, with symptoms similar to her stroke, put Cissie back in the hospital for 4 weeks, where she eventually had a pacemaker installed.
These health issues led to some despair, before Cissie finally accepted what happened and decided to take action and focus on hope.  A byproduct of this was her desire to become involved and, with a suggestion from Roger Hull in 12/21, our club (to its benefit) became a beneficiary of this commitment.
Presenter - Cissie Cappola Isabella Haindl 2024-01-31 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Adam Hollier

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Adam Hollier, Director of the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency
The Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency was created in 2013 and is the central coordinating agency, providing support, care, advocacy and service to veterans and their families. The agency works to identify and break down barriers that veterans face in employment, education, health care and quality of life. It does this by helping to connect veterans and their families to the federal and state benefits they have earned. 
Mr. Hollier believes that there are three important components as to how veterans should be treated: (1) recognize and thank them for their service; (2) encourage them to take advantage of all benefits available to them; and (3) actively pursue benefits on their behalf. Studies show that the very high suicide rate of veterans is cut by 50% when they utilize their benefits. He finds that many don’t seek them because their active duty was a bad experience, or they don’t consider themselves to be veterans because they served in a support capacity.  
While director, Mr. Hollier has been able to double the connection his agency has with Michigan veterans but believes there are still 200,000 outside the system. To learn more, go to www.michigan.gov/mvaa (http://www.michigan.gov/mvaa)
Presenter - Adam Hollier Isabella Haindl 2024-01-24 05:00:00Z 0

New Rotarians - Amanda DeVeaux and Todd Litton

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-- Amanda DeVeaux is a Wealth Management Associate with Morgan Stanley and lives in Harper Woods with her dog, Leland.
-- Todd Litton is the Director of Equipment Services US for Hillyard Inc., a company that manufactures and distributes cleaning solutions.  He lives in GP Farms with his wife, Holly, and their three children.
Please welcome both to the Club and help them become involved members.  
New Rotarians - Amanda DeVeaux and Todd Litton Isabella Haindl 2024-01-17 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Ruth Azar

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Ruth is the wife of Scott Matthews and the Director of The Second Mile Center in Detroit.  She teaches the children at the Center to “speak life”,
which is to be a positive force in the world.  As stated in Proverbs 18:21,
“Words kill, words give life, their either poison or fruit – you choose.” Her goal is to always put positive words in the air.
Every day, Ruth is confronted with “I can’t go to school” and “I can’t go to work”, which she responds with “yes, you can” and “let’s figure out a way to make it happen”.  To help these children find a better life, she tries to get them to believe they can do it, visualize it happening, and then work hard to achieve that goal.
In her own life, Ruth claims three statements daily: I am beautiful, I am loved, and I matter.  So that everyone can “speak life” to themselves, she  supports six daily rituals: (1) spend time with your creator first thing in the morning, (2) feed your spirit through prayer (read), (3) find some quiet time to reflect, (4) go to someone in your life for strength and support, (5) take random pauses to be thankful, and (6) encourage and believe in yourself.
Presenter - Ruth Azar Isabella Haindl 2024-01-17 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jef Fisk 

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Jef Fisk: Right Brain/Left Brian: Creativity Takes Many Forms
The right part of one’s brain is the basis for creativity while the left part is for analyzing. Most consider art to be the creation of music, performing, visual arts such as painting and pottery, and the written word.  Mr. Fisk believes that the business world presents its own opportunities to bring art and be creative.
He presented this by describing his own early journey as a singer/songwriter, a record producer (his own albums and others), and a photographer (fashion and industrial).  His career path then took a turn to information technology where he was a programmer, an IT manager, a professor, and a chief information officer.  Even in the technology field, he was able to be creative when designing computer programs, being a project leader, and with communications, such as newsletters, presentations, role playing, and videos.
Throughout his business career, Mr. Fisk has continued to work and perform with GP Theatre at many levels, conduct fundraisers, and make online entertainment during Covid. To learn more, please visit www.jef-fisk.com (http://www.jef-fisk.com/).
Presenter - Jef Fisk Isabella Haindl 2024-01-10 05:00:00Z 0

Holiday Party 2023

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Last Thursday (12/5), the Grosse Point Rotary Club and the Grosse Pointe Sunrise Rotary Club had their first joint holiday party at Bayview Yacht Club. Everyone had a great time with excellent food and fun company. 
Holiday Party 2023 Isabella Haindl 2023-12-14 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Renata Conger

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Renata Conger, Parish Education and Youth Ministry Coordinator at First English Evangelical Church -- Workcamp summer program.
The purpose of Workcamp is to bring together high school students, along with adult supervisors, from around the country to repair homes. The repair teams are made up of 5 students and one adult.
Workcamp is set up through an organization called Group Mission Trips.  GMT provides broad-stroke planning, staffing, and marketing to participants and it works with co-sponsors, like Ms. Conger’s Church, that build a team, fund repairs, and provides worksites.  The program also requires the help of the local community to provide lodging and hospitality.
The 2024 Workcamp is in Grosse Pointe from 7/7 to 7/13.  The hope is to have 400 attendees, who will work on 80 homes located within 30 minutes from GP North, where the participants will sleep on air mattresses.  Ms. Conger’s goal is to provide “radical hospitality” to inspire Workcampers and is asking those who live here to bring out their gifts, talents, and resources that week.
To make a donation, please go to
www.feelc.org/workcamp (http://www.feelc.org/workcamp).
Presenter - Renata Conger Isabella Haindl 2023-12-06 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Nicole Valentini

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On November 29th we were joined by Nicole Valentini, MSW, the Development Director for BuildOn Detroit.
BuildOn is a national organization, operating in five regions, with the Detroit branch being formed in 1993. Its mission is to break the cycle of illiteracy and low expectations through service and education.  
The Detroit branch operates in 4 of the 14 Detroit public schools, with the hope to extend into all of them. It has Engagement Specialists in each school, partnering with teachers and operating as mentors, looking to recruit students into their program.  Their strategy is to engage 9th graders and focus on dispute resolution and community action.
In addition to partnering with other service organizations for local projects, BuildOn wants students to think globally.  They do this by offering 12-day international service projects.  97% of the students in the Detroit program graduate from high school.
To donate or register for an upcoming event, please go to www.buildon.org/buildon-detroit
Presenter - Nicole Valentini Isabella Haindl 2023-11-29 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jenny Boettcher

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On November 15th, we were joined by Jenny Boettcher, the President and General Director of the Grosse Pointe Chamber of Commerce. Jenny shared with us a rundown of the services and opportunities that the Chamber of Commerce is continuing to provide to the Grosse Pointe communities going into 2024. The Chamber makes it their goal to promote local businesses and encourages residents to support them. They have many opportunities including student intern services, start-up support, welcoming new residents, volunteering, festivals, and so much more to help the community grow. All rotary members are also considered members of the chamber and are privy to all benefits that the chamber has to offer. 
The chamber puts on the annual Thanksgiving parade down Kercheval and is in the process of building Santa his new sleigh. The parade is on Friday, November 24th, and the chamber is looking for volunteers to marshal the parade. Please reach out if you would like to volunteer. 

The Chamber is also organizing snow globe making, where 50 local businesses will be given these globes to customize and put in their shops. This crafty project is to encourage the community to shop locally during the holidays.

Be on the lookout, in the summer of 2024 there will be sphere statues all around Grosse Pointe that have been beautifully painted by artists. Similar to the dog and heart statues that are around the community, the sphere will be the next creation displayed around town, organized by the Chamber of Commerce.
Presenter - Jenny Boettcher Isabella Haindl 2023-11-15 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Mark Higbie

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Mark Higbie – Michigan Central Station Art Program

Mr. Higbie describes the artwork at the Station as a “persistent presence” since it was built in 1913. It was the tallest railroad station in the country with the same designers as Grand Central Station in New York. At its peak, 200 trains and 4,000 passengers would pass through daily, and in the floors above, there were 3,000 office workers. In the 1970s, the amount of train travel at the Station dwindled, until it finally closed in 1988.

From the Station’s artistic perspective, there are three acts. Act 1 is its Rise and Fall: It was built with polished marble hallways, with a huge concourse that had skylights, as light was part of its design. Starting in 1988, 30 years of neglect allowed the elements to tear away at the structure. Act 2 is New Voices in the Hall: During this neglect, graffiti artists from around the country decorated the walls and columns. It was vandalism, but skilled, and art found its voice through these murals. Act 3 is Welcome to the Future: Since purchasing the building and surrounding properties in 2018, Ford Motor Co. has pledged to spend $740 to renovate. In addition to bringing the structure to its 1913 glory, some of the graffiti has been archived and all of it has been digitally preserved. New artists have also been hired to bring in new art, some of which can already be seen at the Bagley Mobility Hub. 

To learn more, please visit www.michigancentral.com.

Presenter - Mark Higbie Isabella Haindl 2023-11-08 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Russ Jones

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Russ Jones – District Governor 
DGJones, a member of the Plymouth Club since 2003, strongly believes in RI’s theme for this year, Create Hope in the World. Every service project, no matter how mundane, creates hope in people that you may never meet and that it’s the rotary moments”, whether it’s a meaningful project or just having fun, that keeps one engaged and active. The creation of hope can come from just one person. 
District 6400’s theme is Be The One. DG Jones believes that everyone should take a leadership role, whether at the board or committee level. 
Topics that are important to our District Governor are (1) the environment, where the District is pursuing a RI global grant to restore the Rouge River; (2) mental health, where there is a Rotary action group that addresses its stigma (www.ragonmentalhealth.org); and (3) human trafficking, where he supports attempts to eliminate it in all of its forms, whether  domestic, agricultural, or child. 
There is a District 6400 Foundation Dinner Celebration on 11/9 where past RI president Jennifer Jones will be a speaker. The District Conference will take place from 5/3 to 5/5 at the Amway Grand in Grand Rapids. As Kim Towar noted, the fellowship and knowledge obtained at a conference is where one becomes a Rotarian.  Tickets for both can be purchased at www.rotary6400.org.
Presenter - Russ Jones Isabella Haindl 2023-10-25 04:00:00Z 0

Fellowship Event at Whiskey Six

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What a lovely evening at Whiskey Six, thanks to everyone who put this event together, and thank you to all for coming!
Fellowship Event at Whiskey Six Isabella Haindl 2023-10-12 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Judy Florian

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Judy Florian – League of Women Voters
Proposition 2, which became part of the Michigan constitution in 2022, provides greater voting accessibility and security:
First, all registered voters have a fundamental right to vote a secret ballot in all elections. This means that no law, rule, or regulations can
be adopted to interfere with this.
Second, the outcomes of all elections need to be certified, based on votes cast, by county and state canvassers.
Third, every city and township must offer early voting in statewide and federal elections. This must be open for at least eight hours/day on nine consecutive days at early voting stations (EVS), beginning on the second Saturday before the election and ending on the Sunday before.
Fourth, registered voters can request to be permanently placed on a list to receive absentee ballots before each election.
Fifth, having a photo ID is not required. If a voter has one, they must show it but, if not, they can vote by signing an affidavit.
Sixth, voters can track the status of their ballot and will be provided with an opportunity to correct any mistakes (i.e., no signature).
Seventh, clerks must distribute drop boxes for absentee ballots equitably throughout each city or township.
Presenter - Judy Florian Isabella Haindl 2023-10-04 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Michelle Hodges

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Michelle Hodges, President & CEO of the Belle Isle Conservancy
The Belle Isle Conservancy’s mission is to protect, preserve, restore, and enhance the natural environment, historic structures, and unique character of Belle Isle as a public park for the enjoyment of all – now and forever. Its focus areas are people, planning, programming, and preservation (and philanthropy). Since its inception in 2012, it has brought in $16 million.
The park is owned by the City of Detroit with the Michigan DNR currently leasing it for 30 years. The Conservancy partners with both to bring additional resources, which includes the management and operation of the aquarium.
The four pillars of the Conservancy’s strategic plan are to be a voice for park users; create valuable programs to enhance the experience; partner with the DNR, the City, and private organizations; and build organizational capacity to support their work. To learn more,
Presenter - Michelle Hodges Isabella Haindl 2023-09-27 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Amanda York and Katrina Bennett

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Amanda York – Mason Elementary inclusive playground
(Ms. York was joined by Katrina Bennett, the Mason PTO president).

Mason Elementary’s playground is the oldest in the District and is at the point where parts to fix the equipment are no longer available. The playground is used year-round, and the community is in need of a wheelchair accessible location. A wheelchair sidewalk is very expensive so the design is still being determined and will be finalized based on the funds raised.
The school district does not provide funding for playgrounds, so it is left to the school’s PTO. Through many fundraisers and some
generous donations, they are $12,000 from the base $250,000 needed. Installation is scheduled to begin in the spring of 2024. The ultimate goal is to raise $300,000 to include some much-needed shade structures.
To donate, please visit their website
Presenters - Amanda York and Katrina Bennett Isabella Haindl 2023-09-20 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Maria Miller

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Maria Miller, CEO of the War Memorial
Ms. Miller is very excited about the recent renovations at the War Memorial, with the ballroom capacity at 300-350, and opening it all up will accommodate up to 600. Over 100 wedding receptions have taken place there this year.
Contrary to popular belief, they are not flush with cash and are trying to grow the endowment. There are many capital needs as the 113-year-old home has water problems and an aging roof. To raise funds, there are many historic preservation and veteran focused grant requests outstanding.
Ms. Miller is invested in making sure the building’s rich history is shared with the community, especially as it pertains to veterans. In addition to Memorial Day and Veterans Day events, there is an existing veterans club, and they collaborate with other veterans’ groups to provide support.
The War Memorial offers 100 unique classes, 70 events, and has 40 partnership collaborations. Ms. Miller is looking at legacy and. historic events to see if any, such as Lawn Games Day, Battle of the Bands, or Summerfest should be brought back. To find out all that it offers, go to www.warmemorial.org.
Presenter - Maria Miller Isabella Haindl 2023-09-13 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Dean Dauphinais

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Dean Dauphinais – Families Against Narcotics and Angel Program
Mr. Dauphinais’s son has been in treatment 9 times, with his longest recovery time being two years, and he is currently 31 days clean. His addiction started at age 15, when he started to self-medicate his depression, escalating from marijuana to heroin.
Families Against Narcotics was formed in 2007 and is a grassroots organization, based in Macomb County, that continues to educate individuals, school personnel, and law enforcement about the dangers of drug use and addiction. Mr. Dauphinais joined FAN four years ago and is now its operations and communications manager.
One of its programs is Hope Not Handcuffs, where participating law enforcement agencies allow those seeking drug addiction help to walk in their lobby, ask for it, and FAN will be contacted. A “volunteer angel” will meet the individual and, through FAN, begin the treatment process for them. All of the Grosse Pointes participate in the program. A Common Perspective on Vimeo.
Volunteer Angels are needed and there is a virtual training session scheduled for 9/11 at 6:30pm. Information about this and other FAN programs can be found at www.familiesagainstnarcotics.org.
Presenter - Dean Dauphinais Isabella Haindl 2023-09-06 04:00:00Z 0

Crossroads Volunteers

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Six Rotarians volunteered at Crossroads of Michigan today, to feed local families during Crossroad's summer lunch program. Dino Valente, Mark Brooks, Bob Lucas, John Mozena, and Philip MacKethan under the leadership of David Colton prepared tacos with side dishes of coleslaw and fruit. 
Crossroads Volunteers Isabella Haindl 2023-08-24 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Kim Towar

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Kim Towar -- Rotary International Foundation

Kim talked about the importance of the RI Foundation with a story from her year as District Governor (2010-2011).
Attending District Governor training in San Diego, Kim met an incoming DG from Australia and the two of them decided to take part in a RI Foundation pilot program where two countries partner to address an area of concern in their respective districts. This led to a team of local midwives heading to East Timor, a fourth-world country, that had a 60% infant mortality rate.
After this three-week educational visit, the mortality rate has consistently dropped over the past 10 years. The Australian district then sent a team of educators to train adult literacy tutors in Detroit, where 50% of the adults read at a 4th-grade level or lower.
As Kim always says, “it’s not about the money but about what the money can do”. She shared two short videos that showed all of the good the Foundation does around the world.
Presenter - Kim Towar Isabella Haindl 2023-08-23 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Dennis Hyduk, John Brooks Jr.

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This past meeting we were joined by Dennis Hyduk (right) and John Brooks Jr. (left) who are both members of the Sunrise Rotary Club. 

Dennis Hyduk is a Charter member of the Grosse Pointe Sunrise Rotary and has 32 years of perfect attendance. Dennis has been President of the Club two time: and a Past Assistant District Governor. He has chaired the scholarship committee as well as the fundraising committee. He is currently Club Administrator and on the foundation board for the Club. He is a member of the Knights of Columbus and is a 4th degree Knight.

John Brooks Jr. has been a Rotarian since 1991 and a charter member of the Grosse Pointe Sunrise Rotary Club. He has been Club President twice and Assistant Governor under PDG's Michael Browne, his father John Brooks, and Ed Shulz. Currently, he is Club Treasurer and Grosse Pointe Run Race Chair. John is a lifelong Grosse Pointer, who raised his two adults here, and resides in Grosse Pointe Park.
Presenter - Dennis Hyduk, John Brooks Jr. Isabella Haindl 2023-08-09 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jake Nellis

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This past Wednesday, Jake Nellis from Zeppelin Cleaning Services shared with us the importance of maintaining household systems and having them serviced by professionals. Professionals such as Zeppelin Cleaning Services provide air duct cleaning, dryer vent, carpet & upholstery, tile, and commercial cleaning. They also emphasize the importance of customer care and quality cleaning. 

By having your household systems professionally cleaned you benefit from a variety of factors such as reduced irritants, improved airflow, HVAC Equipment protection, elimination of odors, cleaner space, better dryer performance, improved dryer efficiency, reduced fire hazards, and peace of mind. 

Zeppelin Cleaning Services are a professional team that caters to not only households but also offices, medical facilities, and local businesses. Doing it yourself is an option however Zeppelin has the right tools to properly and efficiently clean your system.
They have almost 1,000 five-star reviews on Google reviews which is reflective of their quality of work and the way in which they value their customers' time. Zeppelin Cleaning Services ensures their customers an arrival time within 1 hour of their expected appointment.
Presenter - Jake Nellis Isabella Haindl 2023-08-02 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Tim Killeen

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Tonight we were joined by Tim Killeen the Wayne County Commissioner, who shared with us the inner workings of how our district is successfully cared for. 

Tim represents the 5 Grosse Pointes, Harper Woods, and a part of Detroit. He has been on the boards of several major community projects such as the morose greenway initiative. 

Being up to date on all issues within his district is of utmost importance to Tim. One of the issues was managing the juvenile detention facility which Tim has played a major role in its rearrangement. The reconstruction of the sea wall off lakeshore was another thing that Tim took upon himself to see carried out. 

Tim emphasized the importance of bonding with all the people he represents and being a voice for his voters. Standing for the voters and the people of his district is a priority for Tim. 

The best way to ensure the success of our community is by ensuring the success of other surrounding areas such as Indian Village, Harper Woods, and parts of Detroit. Tim drew attention to the growth of the east side as a whole and not just of individual areas. 
Tim concluded his presentation by saying, “What’s good for the east side, is good for all the east side.”
Presenter - Tim Killeen Isabella Haindl 2023-07-19 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jennifer Bingaman, Mary Jo Harris

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Tonight we were joined by two members of the Family Center, Jennifer Bingaman executive director (left) and Mary Jo Harris director of programs and administrations (right). 

They shared with us the different ways in which the Family Center has impacted the community. Their overall goal is empowering families, enriching lives. 

So far they have hosted 101 different programs in the area which have helped build healthier families. They focus on people’s mental health and all services/programs which they offer are free. Some of these programs include Narcan rescue training, QPR training, ACEs, Public Safety night, addiction panel, and women’s health night. 
The family center is also a part of the special needs resource alliance where they put together the first annual special needs resource fair. 

The family center has been able to offer mental health support to the Grosse Pointe school district as well as the Harper Woods district and several other schools. They have been able to bring in service dogs for kids and provide schools with chill rooms for kids to take a mental break from school and relax. 

The family center continues to be an immersive part of our community and provides mental health services to people of all ages. 
Join the family center at the Grosse Pointe Woods community center on Mon. 6/26 for training on how to administer Narcan.
Presenter - Jennifer Bingaman, Mary Jo Harris Isabella Haindl 2023-06-22 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Rev. Susan Mozena

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Rev. Susan Mozena – What Hospital Chaplains Do

As one of her three careers, Susan became a hospital chaplain later in her work career. While working in hospital administration, her religious beliefs led her to this calling, with the help of Sister Janet Hudspeth, with whom she had many faith-based conversations over the years. 

The first thing that Susan emphasized is that her role as a hospital chaplaincy is not about religion. As not everyone is religious, nor is religion a requirement for spirituality, her work focused on this spirituality, which is the search for a sense of meaning, purpose, and morality. 

When dealing with the sick and injured, trying to improve one’s health includes a healthy spirit. Susan views illness as a spiritual event as it challenges an individual’s belief that life is manageable and meaningful. 

Spiritual care requires interventions that facilitate the ability to express the integration of the body, mind, and spirit to achieve wholeness, health, and a sense of connection to self, others, and a higher power. Spiritual support is associated with a positive impact on pain severity and an improved quality of life. 

Susan’s chaplaincy addresses symptoms of spiritual distress, such as questioning one’s existence and unresolved anger at God, others, and/or self. Her goal is to achieve spiritual well-being, a few examples include openness, peace of mind, and the ability to give and receive love. At the end of one’s life, the hope is to “die at peace and in one piece”, that when the body breaks down that the spirit is not broken. To have spiritual wholeness.

Presenter - Rev. Susan Mozena 2023-06-14 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Brian Peterson-Roest

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Brian Peterson-Roest, BEES in the D Founder.
Bees in the D is a nonprofit located in downtown Detroit. It represents a cooperative effort between residents, schools, organizations, and businesses in the Metro Detroit area to contribute to both the health of honeybee colonies and the education of their importance to our environment. 
Honeybees live in hives and their members are divided into three groups. (1) the queen runs the whole hive and can live up to 5 years. Her job is to lay eggs (up to 2,500/day in the summer) and she produces chemicals that guide the behavior of other bees. (2) workers, female bees that forage for food and build and protect the hive. These are the ones you see flying around the hive. (3) Drones are the male bees and their purpose to is to mate with the queen. 
Honeybees are important pollinators for flowers, fruits, and vegetables. They are the only insect that produces something for human consumption. Hives are all over the metro area, including two at the GPYC, which uses the honey that is produced. 


Presenter - Brian Peterson-Roest Isabella Haindl 2023-06-07 04:00:00Z 0

Scholarship Night

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We hosted Scholarship Night in which students were presented with the Max Gardner Scholarship and Frank Sladen Scholarship.
Kevin Cox, our Interact Liaison, presented the scholarship to Interact President Meredith Tiderington. Ms. Tiderington is looking forward to continuing her community service while studying engineering at Purdue University. Kevin listed the numerous projects the Interact Club participated in the past year and thanked the leadership: President Meredith Tiderington, VP Jane Maxwell, Secretary Mimi Mager, Treasurer Maeve Hix, and Publicist Anamaria Garberding (a few who were in attendance).
Frank Sladen Scholarships were then presented, with GP North's Desmond Charlet, who will be studying aviation technology at the MIAT College of Technology. After two years, he hopes to be working at Metro Airport or for Delta. Martin Daher, who will be studying electrical engineering at Notre Dame University. Heavenly Reeves, who will be studying psychology at Michigan State University. GP South's Jane Kuhnlein, who will be studying economics at the University of Michigan. Madison Duff, who will be studying applied mathematics at Brown University. Savanna Cardaris, a co-op student, who is currently training to be an esthetician and make-up artist, will be studying business at Oakland University.
Scholarship Night Anna Gulyas 2023-05-31 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Mary Butler-Moore

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Mary Butler-Moores spoke to the club as the Community Engagement Coordinator for Forgotten Harvest.
Forgotten Harvest’s mission is to relieve hunger and prevent nutritious food waste in Macomb, Oakland, and Wayne Counties. It envisions communities that work together to end hunger and increase individual, neighborhood, economic, and environmental health.
The organization was formed in 1990 and now operates 50 refrigerated trucks out of a 77,000 square foot facility with 16 truck bays and has 200 emergency food providers that distribute the food to those in need. The service they provide is much needed as 40% of the food (78 billion pounds) in the U.S. is wasted annually and there is an estimated 38.3 million people experiencing food insecurity.
Ms. Butler-Moore fell in love with the organization’s work after volunteering at the Forgotten Harvest Farm in 2017 where she learned the “why” and “for whom” the work was being done. Volunteers at the warehouse, farm, and pantries are its lifeblood.
Presenter - Mary Butler-Moore Anna Gulyas 2023-05-10 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Will Owen, Jill McKeown, and Liz Naber

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Will Owen, Jill McKeown, and Liz Naber spoke representing The Wig Boutique.
The Wig Boutique, located in Shelby Township, has been operating since the 1980s with Mr. Owen purchasing the business last year. The company is deeply committed to empowering women seeking alternative hair solutions by offering a large selection of human hair wigs, synthetic wigs, and hair pieces.
Although a wig can be purchased for any reason, The Wig Boutique is available to provide private consultations to offer the best alternative hair solutions, and fittings, to women losing their hair for medical reasons. The quality of wigs has greatly improved over the years, whether they are synthetic or human hair.
The speakers’ goals are to increase brand awareness, especially at chemotherapy locations, of what they offer and to increase the diversity of wigs available to be able to tailor to each woman’s race. The prices range from $250 to $5,000 and can be paid through insurance with a doctor’s referral. To learn more, please visit www.thewigboutiquemi.com
Presenters - Will Owen, Jill McKeown, and Liz Naber Anna Gulyas 2023-05-03 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Dio Rockers

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Dio Rockers was inducted into the club, having recently moved to Grosse Pointe and looking to become involved in the community. He is a retired widower with a love of traveling, having been to all 50 states and 35 countries. Welcome, Dio.
New Member - Dio Rockers Anna Gulyas 2023-04-26 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Gail and John Urso

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Gail & John Urso spoke to the club as the founders of Kevin’s Song.
Kevin’s Song was formed after the Ursos’ 41-year-old son took his life in 2013. It's a charitable organization dedicated to generating public awareness about the causes of suicide, its prevalence in our society and possible preventive measures. Its mission is to empower communities to prevent suicide and offer hope and healing to survivors.
It’s important to recognize the factors of those possibly contemplating taking their life. Do they feel like a burden, are they isolating themselves, and do they have the commitment to carry it through? Don’t be afraid to ask “are you thinking of suicide?” as a planting of the idea in the person’s head but knowing that are exposing a possible secret.
Suicide is a public health crisis with a far-reaching impact, as each one affects at least 100 people. The organization’s ultimate vision is to have a world without suicide. www.kevinssong.org
Presenters - Gail and John Urso Anna Gulyas 2023-04-26 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Debra Moffet

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Deborah Moffat spoke to the club as the Executive Director of The Arc of Grosse Pointe and Harper Woods.
The Arc, operating out of St Michael’s Church in GP Woods, works to ensure that people with cognitive, intellectual and/or developmental disabilities and their families, friends, educators, and medical providers receive the support and services they need, are accepted in their communities, and have maximum control over their own lives.
With a budget of $200,000, one full time employee, many part-time employees, and a 15-person van, the organization offers these individuals, from age 9-24, all sorts of after school, weekend, and summer opportunities. Examples include visiting the Riverwalk, the Detroit Zoo, Greenfield Village, Selfridge AFB, and an EMU football game. They also ride two- and three-wheel bikes on Lochmoor Club’s cart paths when it’s closed on Mondays and swim at the GP Shores Park two times a week.
All of these activities allow the individuals to interact and help each other. To learn more, visit www.thearcgp-hw.org.
Presenter - Debra Moffet Anna Gulyas 2023-04-19 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Meet the Merchants

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Meet the Merchants of Grosse Pointe was hosted, featuring store owners in The Village.
Lanna Young is the owner of Savvy Chic Boutique which has been at its current location since October 2021. It’s a women’s clothing store that offers trendy, and affordable clothes in a smaller setting. A GP resident since 2011, she enjoys The Village for offering a combined city/neighborhood feel. www.cavvychicgp.com.
Mary and Maddie Mancus are a mother and daughter team that coowns Glitter & Scotch. They opened in 2021 and described their clothing as “shopping in your best friend’s closet”. Growing up in GP, they have a family history of working in retail (Hudson’s, Pointe Pedlar). www.shopglitterandscotch.com
Joe Binkowski is the owner of Ridge Crest Outfitter, which offers men’s and women’s clothing that can be worn in the office or while walking in the woods. His store is trying to fill a niche that Moosejaw can’t provide. He grew up in Grosse Pointe and has a history in retail, working at Hickey’s and Jacobson’s. www.ridgecrestgp.com
Kasey Malley is the co-owner of Small Favors Gift Gallery. The store has been in business since 2003, at many different locations. They sell gifts that celebrate “everything” and enjoy knowing that they will be given by the buyer to someone else. www.shopsmallfavors.com.
The common theme of the store owners is the desire to fill a need (possibly unique) at a local level for shoppers. They consider their customers to be friends/family and enjoy being able to provide this service. Being locally owned, the money spent at their shops goes back into the community.
Presenter - Meet the Merchants Anna Gulyas 2023-04-12 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Tom Mercer

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Tom Mercer was inducted into the club as a Grosse Pointe City resident. Tom has a wife, Blythe, and four children, and recently opened a Farm Bureau insurance agency located on Mack in GP Woods. He also coaches for the freshmen boys basketball team at GP South. Welcome, Tom.
New Member - Tom Mercer Anna Gulyas 2023-04-05 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Dr. Jodie Rappe

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Dr. Jody Rappe spoke to the club as the Chief Medical Officer of Beaumont GP.
Dr. Rappe has been the chief medical officer and a patient safety officer at Beaumont GP Hospital (a Level 3 trauma center handling auto accident but not gun injuries) l since 2021 and is excited about all of the improvements that have been made and those that are scheduled to take place. She is also proud of the distinctions the hospital has received as well as the quality of nursing it attracts.
A $19 million investment in surgical facilities has just been completed with state-of-the-art equipment included. A $1.9 million Cath lab renovation is underway and construction on a special care (Level 2 NICU) nursey will begin later this year. The hospital has also purchased its second Da Vinci robotic surgical platform and a stealth neuro/Ent which provides increased visualization for neurosurgeries.
Whether it’s Bon Secours, Beaumont, or Corewell Health, the hospital provides “Excellence Close to Home.”
Presenter - Dr. Jodie Rappe Anna Gulyas 2023-04-05 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Amelie Catheline

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Amelie Catheline spoke to the club as co-chair of Food Waste Task Force. Food waste is defined as all food lost during its processing, distribution, retail, and consumption. In the U.S., food accounts for over 20% of the municipal solid waste generated, with 40% coming from households. Globally, in 2019, 931 million tons of food was lost or wasted, which is a quarter to a third of all food produced.
Food waste impacts the U.S. in many ways. Economically, it costs $160 billion/year at the retail and consumer level and millions of dollars to manage and dispose of it. Environmentally, landfills are expanding and the rotting food in them produces methane, a potent greenhouse gas and a major contributor to the climate crisis.
To help solve this problem, a food recovery hierarchy - a reverse pyramid - has been put in place with landfills at the bottom. The top starts with simply reducing wasted food, then to using excess to feed people and animals, and then composting. The benefits of not going to landfills is that it reduces the carbon footprint, the use of natural resources, and the overall cost of food.
To help locally, food banks should be supported, as well as school programs that “get the lunch out of landfills” with ways to donate excess edible food and composting the rest. On an individual basis, simple steps to follow include knowing what food you already have when shopping and making sure that leftovers are not forgotten.
Presenter - Amelie Catheline Anna Gulyas 2023-03-29 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters- Angela Brown Wilson and Summer Woods

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Angela Brown Wilson opened the meeting as COO, Eastside Community Network (ECN).
The ECN was formed in 1984 and spearheads initiatives that promote social cohesion, neighborhood sustainability, community participation, and resident empowerment. Its goal is sustainable growth on Detroit’s east side and the project to be discussed is improving the streetscape on Mack Ave. from Connor to Moross.
Summer Woods handed out flyers with three possible streetscape options and a survey. One is “classic charm” which presents a traditional look and can include brick pavers and wrought iron. The second is “natural elements which includes a calming, earthy look with wood accents and rust and stone colors. The third is “urban artistry” which is creative and colorful with eye-catching murals and playful shapes and forms. These options can be combined.
With input from local businesses on Mack, the ECN is working to raise funds through Wayne County and the cities of Detroit GP Park, City, and Farms. Detroit intends to invest $80 million into streetscape projects citywide. www.ecn-detroit.org.
Presenters- Angela Brown Wilson and Summer Woods Anna Gulyas 2023-03-22 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - David Swank and John Zettner

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David Swank and John Zettner spoke to the club from The Plant Advisors.
The Plant Advisors is a new venture that brings on-site advice to metro Detroit homeowners who are learning about biodiversity and native plants. They provide a twohour initial visit to assess a homeowner’s plants, understand their goals, and then provide a detailed list of plants to fit their needs.
80% of the homes in America have ornamental plants that are not functional. For example, hostas do not support any butterfly or moth caterpillar species, while native plants such as dogwoods support 115 species. These and other bugs are needed to support the bird population. Birds like Chickadees, which require 6,000 bugs to feed their babies over a three-week period, will not build nests if there are no bugs available.
They are huge proponents of Doug Tallamy, a University of Delaware Professor of Agriculture and Natural Resources, who is promoting a grass roots call-to-action to plant native plants. www.homegrownnationalpark.org “If you plant them, they will come.” www.theplantadvisors.com
Presenters - David Swank and John Zettner Anna Gulyas 2023-03-08 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Terry Gibb

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Terry Gibb spoke to the club as a representative for MSU Extension Services.
MSU Extension’s mission is to help people improve their lives through an educational process that applies knowledge to critical issues, needs, and opportunities. It brings the vast knowledge resources of MSU directly to individuals, communities, and businesses.
In 1914, Congress passed the Smith-Lever Act, which directed the nation’s land grant universities to oversee its work in every state. MSU Extension has divided Michigan into 14 districts, with 4 statewide institutes: (1) Children & Youth, (2) Health & Nutrition, (3) Agriculture & Agribusiness, and (4) Community, Food & Environment.
Children & Youth includes the 4H Club, which is the largest youth development program in the State with 59,000 youth taking part. It teaches life skills, how to be a leader, and career preparation. Health and Nutrition focuses on nutrition, physical activity, food preparation, and food safety. The programs in Agriculture and Agribusiness include Master Gardener, plant & pest diagnostics, and crop production. Community, Food & Environment is the most varied institute with programs in areas such as housing education and foreclosure, local government fiscal sustainability, and homeowner septic education. www.canr.msu.edu/outreach/
Presenter - Terry Gibb Anna Gulyas 2023-03-01 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Stu Alderman

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Stu Alderman spoke to the club as the Executive Director of the Neighborhood Club.
The Neighborhood Club was formed in 1911 as a service organization. Its mission, as a nonprofit, was (and is) to collaborate to enhance the health and well-being of Grosse Pointe and the surrounding communities by offering recreation, social, and wellness programs.
From 2000 – 2003, a Master Recreation Plan was commissioned, and it was determined that a state of-the-art recreation center and warm water pool were priorities for the area. The Neighborhood Club was willing to take that vision and make it a reality. leading to its current 48,000 square foot building (celebrating its 10th anniversary). To break ground, a loan of $7 million was needed along with a $4 million capital campaign and Mr. Alderman is proud to report that about $2.4 million remains to be paid. Beaumont (now Corewell Health) leases 25% of this space and discussions regarding a new lease are ongoing. Within the structure, there is a pool, a gym, a fitness center, small conference rooms available to rent, and a preschool.
Having a membership provides access to the fitness center, over 55 group exercise classes, the pool (and its aquatic classes), the gym, and discounted fees toward its many youth and adult sports leagues. These sports leagues have been run by the Neighborhood Club for decades. It also operates a thrift shop, at the corner of University and Mack, which will be celebrating its 95th anniversary this year.
After losing 634 households due to Covid, dropping membership to 1,359 by April, 2021, Mr. Alderman is proud to report that it’s now up to 2,100. To learn more, please visit www.neighborhoodclub.net.
Presenter - Stu Alderman Anna Gulyas 2023-02-22 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Julia Turnbull

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Abigail Turnbull spoke to the club as Grosse Pointe Chamber of Commerce Membership & Events Coordinator.
Turnbull joined the Chamber in December 2022 and has helped with existing programs such as networking events that take place 1 or 2 times a month, an online business directory, an online job directory, marketing gift bags, and chamber change (gift cards that are essentially cash that can be used at member businesses where the business is reimbursed the value of the gift card). Her goals include making these programs even better and developing new ones.
Upcoming events include: 3/5 – 3/11: Grosse Pointe Restaurant Week. The theme is Passport to the Pointes where you can have your passport stamped and exchanged for chamber change. 5/4: Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast. The keynote speaker is JT Mestaugh. 6/23: Legacy on the Lake. This will take place at the Ford House and will honor Jim and Ann Nicholson. 11/24: Santa Claus Parade. The Chamber is excited that a new Santa float is being built by The Parade Company. Look for fundraising opportunities to support this.
There are approximately 1,000 businesses in Grosse Pointe and over 600 of are Chamber members. Ms. Turnbull works with, and promotes, all four local associations (GP Park Business Association, Main Street Grosse Pointe, the Hill Association, and the GP Woods Business Association) equally. She views them as organizations working together and not competing against each other. www.grossepointechamber.com
Presenter - Julia Turnbull Anna Gulyas 2023-02-15 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - David Eardley

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David Eardley spoke to the club giving his New Member Vocational.
Talk David grew up in northeast Detroit, at 8 Mile and Van Dyke. He attended Harper Woods Lutheran East and then the University of Michigan, where his career in ministry began. He studied at the Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary on the Campus of Northwestern University and received his first posting in 1993 at a church in Britton, MI, a small farming community. This was a bit of a culture shock, after growing up in Detroit.
In 1997, David was transferred to a church in Ann Arbor (which he attended as a college student). He moved to Bay City in 2001, where he became familiar with Rotary, and then on to Frankenmuth in 2006, where he joined their club.
In 2013, David moved to his largest church, in Rochester. He became a member of the Rochester Club and was its president in 2021-22. In addition to navigating Covid, David had a challenging year, inheriting two contentious issues (a money donation dispute and new bylaws) and had to secure a new meeting location. David became the senior pastor at Grosse Pointe Methodist church on July 1, 2022. www.gpumc.org. He lives with his wife, Sara, and 17- year-old son, Ryan.
David understands the importance of Rotary’s battle to eliminate polio as he had a very early in life exposure to the disease. His great aunt Betty Jane was stricken and had an iron lung in her home. Amazingly, she was able to raise two children in this condition.
Seeing how Rotary has helped him connect with the communities he has worked; David is a big proponent of what the organization is and does. With each club, he has seen the friendships made and the commitment to serving.
Presenter - David Eardley Anna Gulyas 2023-02-08 05:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Julia Given and Lulu Nestor

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Julia Given & Lulu Nester spoke to the club from Freedom House Detroit.
Formed in 1983, Freedom House is located in southwest Detroit and serves individuals and families fleeing direct government, or government allowed, persecution. It has 14 dorm rooms with at least four beds in each and typically houses 50-60 people. It is an open facility with few rules – be respectful, complete your chores in a timely manner, and be in by curfew.
Freedom House offers five programs: (1) FreedomLives, providing shelter, food, and clothing, with many staying up to 2 years; (2) FreedomAids, providing legal aid assistance with the asylum process; (3) FreedomWorks, working on employment readiness, which, with government bureaucracy, can take 12-18 months to even be qualified to hold a job; (4) FreedomCares, providing on-site counseling and medical care through partnerships; and (5) FreedomTalks, affording a resource for those seeking global perspectives and language services.
Those seeking asylum learn about Freedom House through word of mouth and online searches. Our speakers are hoping to make it more of a household name in Detroit. To learn more or donate, please visit www.freedomhouse.org. In addition to money, items can be donated through its Amazon List. On the website, click on “Ways to Engage under “Join Us” and then “Get Started under “Give Goods via Amazon”.
Presenters - Julia Given and Lulu Nestor Anna Gulyas 2023-02-01 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Susan Wenzlick

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Susan Wenzlick spoke to the club as a Senior Brownfield Consultant at Fishbeck, Thompson, Car & Huber, Inc.
After three decades with the Michigan Department of Environment Quality (now EGLE), Ms. Wenzlick joined Fishbeck, an engineering, environmental sciences, architecture, and construction management consulting firm based in Grand Rapids.
A short video was shown, highlighting the Detroit Riverwalk and how partnerships between the city, businesses, non-profits, and the State helped eliminate blight and environmental contamination, making the area as great as it is now. Collaboration and funding from all of these sources brought the dilapidated property back to life.
Most of the properties that become blighted and/or require environmental clean-up are mom & pop businesses (gas stations, cleaners) where the owners cannot afford to maintain or clean up the property. For unpaid back taxes, they revert back to the government who then attempt to sell at auction.
For properties not sold at auction, land banks were created to become the owners. Each county in the State has a land bank as well as the City of Detroit. They operate to sell the land, and also work with the State’s Brownfield Authority which provides grants and low-interest loans to communities to facilitate the redevelopment of contaminated properties. The Authority also provides tax increment financing to businesses to incentivize the cleaning and demolishing of properties where the businesses will benefit through lower taxes when redeveloped.
Presenter - Susan Wenzlick Anna Gulyas 2023-01-25 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Nadia Nijimbere

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Nadia Nijimbere spoke to the club as the founder, owner, and chef of Baobab Restaurant in Detroit.
Ms. Nijimbere told us of her journey from an East African Rights Activist to a Detroit East African Cuisine restaurant owner. In 2013, she fled her country to avoid persecution and, through a connection, learned about the Freedom House, a temporary home for indigent survivors of persecution who are seeking asylum. Freedom House put her up in a facility near the Ambassador Bridge for two years and provided aid in her assimilation to the US. She was taught to speak English, given legal counsel, and given access to medical exams. During one of these exams, she learned that she was pregnant with twins.
Repeatedly in her presentation she expressed her gratitude to the Freedom House for the care and opportunity that they provided. Two years later, her husband, Hamissi Mamba, was able to join them. The first few years here were a struggle as Mr. Mamba was unable to look for work until his paperwork went through the system, which left Ms. Nijimbere’s caregiver job as the only source of income. In 2017 they were finally granted asylum.
As entrepreneurs, and, with their love of cooking, it seemed right that they open a restaurant and introduce East African foods to Detroit. Their idea allowed them to win $110,000 in two grant money competitions. Although they were lucky to acquire 6568 Woodward Avenue, Suite 100 in 2018, they did not open until 2021 and struggled during those years until they were able to obtain a loan.
Baobab means tree of life, and, in South Africa, a Baobab tree grows in areas without water. The staff is hired from Freedom House. www.baobafare.com.
Presenter - Nadia Nijimbere Anna Gulyas 2023-01-18 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Matthew Lambrecht

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Matthew Lambrecht spoke to the club as a US Border Patrol Agent for the Detroit The Border Patrol is the primary Federal law enforcement agency between the ports-of-entry and its mission is to prevent the entry of terrorists and their weapons from entering the country. This includes the detection, interdiction, and apprehension of those who attempt to illegally enter or smuggle people or contraband across our border.
Mr. Lambrecht’s duties as a supervisor include developing agency-wide strategies, policies, and procedures. He coordinates with other law enforcement agencies and applies his knowledge of law enforcement methods and techniques when participating in special investigative activities that impact National security.
Recent challenges that the Border Patrol has faced include Covid detainment issues and migrant surges which overwhelm local and state resources, especially in border communities.
Presenter - Matthew Lambrecht Anna Gulyas 2023-01-11 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Alicia Carlisle

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Alicia Carlisle spoke to the club as one of the founders of Michael B’s Café. The idea behind Michael B’s is to form a new non-profit in Grosse Pointe Park where special needs adults can work, including Ms. Carlisle’s son, Michael, who has Autism. It will be located on Mack Ave., next to the Cabbage Patch saloon.
The Café will serve ethically sourced coffee that will benefit the communities where the coffee is grown and will have a second floor with event space. They are looking to partner with other non-profits to thrive. One example of this is Full Circle’s garden will provide vegetables to be prepared.
The goal is to raise $3 million, break ground this June, and to complete the building within one year. They have fundraising events coming up in the next few months, with the help of the GP Chamber of Commerce. Ms. Carlisle is looking for financial support but also needs the community to embrace the concept. www.michaelbcafe.com.
Presenter - Alicia Carlisle Anna Gulyas 2023-01-04 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Diane Strickler

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Diane Strickler spoke to the club as the first of out Meet Our Member serious, designed to “re-introduce” Rotarians who have been members over 20 years.
 Diane was born and raised in Toronto, where she worked as a nurse. She and Ron moved to St. Louis, where Ron started a residency program, and lived there for 20 years, raising three children. While there, she started a pre- school, that is still operating, and “before school” language classes, that were eventually integrated into the school system.
The Stricklers moved to Grosse Pointe when Ron became the head of Obstetrics & Gynecology at Henry Ford Hospital. Diane began working toward a Master of Social Work degree in St. Louis, and finished up at U of M in 1998.
The combination of nursing and social work led Diane to focus on prevention, leading to the formation of the Family Center in 2000. Its purpose is to provide resources and help families navigate life’s social, emotional, and physical challenges. Over the last 23 years, the organization has helped to remove the stigma associated with issues like substance abuse and mental health. www.familycenterweb.org.
Diane loves to cook and travel and continues to volunteer through her church and Rotary. She invites everyone to visit the garden she helped champion at GP Congregational Church when the weather is nicer.
Presenter - Diane Strickler Anna Gulyas 2022-12-07 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Phil Gilchrist

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Phil Gilchrist spoke to the club as the Executive Director of the Anton Art Center in Mt. Clemens.
The Anton Art Center is in Mt. Clemens at a location that was originally a Carnegie Library, which was built in 1904 and is now listed on the national registry. Over the past few decades, the Art Center has expanded while incorporating the historic nature of the original building.
The galleries are almost exclusively local artists, and it offers art classes and artist talks. The pandemic required the Center to become creative, starting an online exhibit within a week of the shutdown in 2020. It continues to offer virtual programming with classes and a You Tube channel.
Gilchrist believes it’s very important to make the building available to the public, due to its historic nature and how much better it is to see the artwork in person. The Center is now open for its 44th annual Holiday Market, running through 12/23. Holiday items, fine art, crafts, apparel, and much more are available for purchase. To learn more, please go to www.theartcenter.org.
Presenter - Phil Gilchrist Anna Gulyas 2022-11-30 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Michael Spence

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Michael Spence spoke to the club as Administrator of Government Affairs at Southeast Michigan Council of Government (SEMCOG).
SEMCOG is made up of a 7-county region (www.semcog.org) whose purpose is to support coordinated local planning with technical, data, and intergovernmental resources. It coordinates local projects and provides funding from the federal and state governments, with transportation, economic development, the environment, and infrastructure as the main areas of focus.
These areas, which are mapped out for the next five years, have benefited the Grosse Pointes. Over $1 million has been allocated for road repairs on Cadieux and Kercheval. SEMCOG also studies traffic safety through crash location maps and safe routes to schools, which has included Maire. For our infrastructure, it has miles of pipe data of water, sanitary, and stormwater usage to better prepare for flooding and is working with an organization through a coastal zone management grant, to help fix our shoreline. Resource tools are available for local economic development with an emphasis on electric vehicles and broadband availability.
Presenter - Michael Spence Anna Gulyas 2022-11-16 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Don Riddell

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Don Riddell spoke to the club as PDG of District 6380 and Past President of our Club.
Riddell’s key words are footprints and impact. An individual’s footprints tell the story of their life and, in Rotary terms, their service. One’s impact is putting these footprints into motion, with one way being through the Rotary Foundation.
Due to its strong financial health and commitment to accountability and transparency, the Foundation has received the highest possible score from Charity Navigator for the last 16 years. It was named the World’s Outstanding Foundation in 2016.
The impact of Rotary is putting one’s dream into motion through the power of 1.4 million Rotarians. One of these dreams is eliminating polio, which, in football terms, is at 4th and 1, and we need to cross the goal line.
Since its inception, our club has donated $853,066 to the RI Foundation and have averaged $11,507/year over the last three years. During that time, we have received global grants and are currently pursuing one with a club in Egypt. Riddell challenged our Club to partner with an international club for a water program.
Presenter - Don Riddell Anna Gulyas 2022-11-09 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Lauren Feldman

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Lauren Feldman spoke to the club about her job as COO of the Grosse Pte Animal Adoption Society. 
The GPAAS was formed in 1991, became a 501(c)(3) in 1996, and had its first brick and mortar shelter in 2012. Their current location, at 20542 Harper Ave., has dog runs, a connected dog park, and cat suites.
The organization brings in 800 stray and injured animals a year. This doesn’t include animals that are safe harbored from crime scenes or due to neglect. 30% of the strays, which they must legally hold for 5 business days, are returned to their homes.
Grosse Pointe and Harper Woods public safety departments do not have animal control officers and rely on a staff of 4 at GPAAS to assist them. The GPAAS used to help other local cities, but the need has become too great and had to limit it to GP and HW.
As of 10/24, they had 48 canines and 48 felines in its care. Feeding them requires 168 cans of wet dog food, 420 pounds of dry dog food, 11 bags of dry cat foot, and 336 cans of wet cat food a week. Its funding comes from adoption fees and donations, and it also relies heavily on volunteers to walk the dogs, play, and socialize with the animals, and even help with the laundry. www.gpaas.org.
Presenter - Lauren Feldman Anna Gulyas 2022-11-02 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Judy Masserang

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Judy Masserang and the Club Foundation (consisting of nine members who serve three-year terms) spoke to the club discussing important club information.
Donation requests to the Club start with the Club President who presents it to the Club Board at its monthly meetings. The Board then votes to approve the request, modify the amount, or reject it. If accepted/modified, it’s then passed to the Foundation Board to make a determination. The Foundation Board can approve the request as submitted, modify the amount up or down, or reject it. These determinations are typically made based on the amounts budgeted each year for (1) community programs, (2) educational funding, and (3) international projects. Examples of community programs are Crossroads, The Family Center, and the GP South Interact Club. Educational funding consists of Frank Sladen Scholarship winners, who are picked by school counselors and interviewed by our scholarship committee and Interact Club scholarships. Recent international projects include Dino Valente’s work with the South Sudanese Refugee Camp and a women empowerment program in Egypt that is being championed by Eva Habib.
Foundation funds are generated through Club fundraising, memorial gifts, individual gifts by Rotarians and non-Rotarians, and a small amount through a Kroger spending program. There is currently around $73,000 in the general fund, and $170,000 in the Evergreen Fund, whose purpose is to create an endowment to fund scholarships.
Presenter - Judy Masserang Anna Gulyas 2022-10-26 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Renee Miller

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Congratulations to our newest member, Dr. Renee Miller, who was inducted on October 26.
Renee works as a dentist and has a dental practice on Mack Ave. in Grosse Pointe Woods. Her family consists of husband, Andrew, her daughter, Emma, and pet dog, Murphy. Welcome, Renee.
New Member - Renee Miller Anna Gulyas 2022-10-26 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter -  Rebecca Fannon

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Rebecca Fannon gave her vocational speech to the club regarding her personal life and job as Community Relations Specialist for the GPPSS.
Rebecca began by describing her family, which includes her husband, and their four sons. She attended Albion College as an English major, which allowed her to get a variety of internships and work opportunities leading her to her current position as GPPSS Community Relations Specialist, a position she has held for 17 years.
Rebecca stressed just how passionate she is about her job, and how much she loves the schools. Each day of work for her is something different, which she greatly enjoys. As Community Relations Specialist, she manages social media, is the liaison to the homeless/foster students and families in the district, manages the “School Pointes,” and a variety of other things.
Rebecca mentioned just how much her job affects her and her family’s lives, because of things like how she “can never go to Kroger without a question.” However, she is still incredibly enthusiastic about her position and made sure to emphasize just how much her job means to her.
Presenter - Rebecca Fannon Anna Gulyas 2022-10-19 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Jon Dean

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On October 12, Dr. Jon Dean was officially inducted into the club. Dean is the Superintendent of the Grosse Pointe Public Schools System, and lives in Grosse Pointe woods with his wife and two college-aged children. Dean is a true-blue Detroiter, growing up on the westside, attending Wayne State, and has a love of Detroit sports. Welcome, Jon!
New Member - Jon Dean Anna Gulyas 2022-10-13 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Steve Kiefer

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Steve Kiefer, Chairman of the Kiefer Foundation spoke to the club about his foundation's mission to end distracted driving.
Kiefer shared the tragic story that inspired the Kiefer Foundation. On 9/17/2016, Mr. Kiefer’s son, Mitchel, was driving to MSU on I-96 and was stopped due to traffic when the car behind rear-ended him at 82 mph. This pushed his car across the median into upcoming traffic, killing him instantly.
The foundation was formed to combat distracted driving with three strategic pillars: awareness, policy, and technology. Through awareness, it educates as to the dangers of distracted driving through safe driving programs and has formed the “Just Drive” campaign. Through policy, it is trying to enact laws like Hands Free USA (which is already in 24 states) that will ticket drivers who are on their phones. Through technology, vehicles may soon have driver monitoring systems that recognize when your eyes are diverted. To learn more, visit www.mkiefer.org.
Presenter - Steve Kiefer Anna Gulyas 2022-10-12 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter- Traci Sincock

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District Governor Traci Sincock spoke to the club giving the annual "Governor's Report."
Traci talked about how Rotary International's goal for the year, as it battles back from the pandemic, is to put its members first and to recognize that every member is unique, and their differences should be embraced. With Jennifer Jones from our District as the first female RI President, diversity and inclusion are important themes for her year.
As the District level, Sincock asks that Clubs focus on the significant impact their projects have on their communities.  She promoted this with a Day of Service on September 17th, with 38 clubs participating.  She is asking for Clubs to concentrate on familiar current projects and to not overload what they want to accomplish.
Sincock promoted two upcoming events:  (1) A Holiday Party at Phoenix Mill on December 1st in Plymouth and (2) To celebrate the years accomplishments, the District Conference will take place from 5/5 to 5/7 at Caesars Windsor. Speakers will include RI President Jennifer Jones and Mitch Albom. You can register at www.rotary6400.org.
Presenter- Traci Sincock Anna Gulyas 2022-10-05 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Pamala Good

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Pamela Good spoke the club as the Beyond Basics Co-Founder and CEO.
Beyond Basics is a nonprofit working to eradicate illiteracy, which it views as America’s largest and most solvable disability. It addresses the Literacy Gap, which includes any student reading more than one grade level behind. This is a huge issue, with 85% of the 43,000 Detroit Public Schools students falling into this gap. It may be surprising, but the percentage in the GP Public Schools is 31%. A child who struggles to read becomes an adult who struggles to succeed.
Beyond Basic’s solution is to provide intensive one on one hour long, daily, tutoring that delivers results: seeing students achieve grade-level movement in an average of six weeks.  This is done through four different programs. They offer 14-week Readiness for those two or more grade levels behind, 10-week Read to Rise for those at least one grade behind, 4-week Scholars for those less than one grade level behind, and Scholars Plus to assist with college and career readiness. Beyond Basics has a staff of just under 160, which includes paid tutors, and have impacted 90,000 students since incorporating.
To learn more, please visit www.beyondbasics.org or watch https://www.youtube.com/watch?v= mchLd3UmqdU
Presenter - Pamala Good Anna Gulyas 2022-09-21 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jon Dean

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Superintendent Jon Dean spoke to the club, giving the State of the Grosse Pointe Public School System (GPPSS) Address.
The District’s vision is to be one inclusive community learning together with a mission to cultivate educational excellence by empowering students, valuing diversity, inspiring curiosity, and pushing possibilities. Dr. Dean wants every student to meet their desired outcome, whether it be Harvard, U of M, the military, or skilled trades.
GPPSS is an outstanding school district, ranking in the top 2% nationally. A fact sheet available at www.gpschools.org (GPPSS By the Numbers) promotes its achievements. These include 18:1 student-teacher ratio, 30 high school sports with 120 teams participating, and 13 National Merit Semi- finalists.
In addition to the website, the District offers many sources of information. Board meeting are televised, surveys and focus groups are conducted, and, to receive the weekly E-Newsletter, School Pointes, email info@gpschools.org. Two-way communication opportunities are also available at Listening Sessions With Dr. Dean, which can be found on the District website calendar. 
Presenter - Jon Dean Anna Gulyas 2022-09-14 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Diallo Smith

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Diallo Smith spoke to the club as COO of Life Remodeled. Life Remodeled is a non-profit that was formed in 2010 to help rebuild Detroit neighborhoods. Its current budget is $2.5 million and operates with 11 very dedicated full-time employees.
The organization has two main components right now. First, is the Durfee Innovation Society, that opened in 2018, at the former Durfee Elementary School. It’s at 100% capacity with 39 organizations/businesses (“tenants”) operating out of the building. Life Remodeled provides a dynamic environment for the tenants by operating at cost with very low rental fees. A list can be found at www.liferemodeled.org. Second, is the Six Day Project, which annually brings in thousands of volunteers to clean-up and remove blight in a neighborhood. This year, the project will take place from 10/3 to 10/8 in the community surrounding Cooley High School. (Life Remodeled is in the process of purchasing the Cooley High School building, to start another innovation center).
Life Remodeled’s core values are (1) Community First, where it seeks ideas and input from the community to align with its values; (2) Always Find a Way, to create a future that doesn’t yet exist through innovation and creativity; (3) Bold Humility, where it tries to be servant leaders that value the needs of others with confidence and determination.
Presenter - Diallo Smith Anna Gulyas 2022-09-07 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Abagael Adair

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Abagael Adair spoke to the club as Senior Manager of Philanthropy for the The Children’s Center. The Children’s Center was formed in 1929 and is located in Midtown Detroit. It is home to many specialized clinical services, leading the way in working with children who struggle with behavioral, emotional, educational, intellectual, and developmental challenges or may have experience trauma. It examines barriers in the home, school, and community, working with the family who raises them and the organizations that support them.
Its programs/services are broken down into four categories: (1) Healthy Start – addresses autism, parent-child interactions, and pregnant moms; (2) Healing the Hurt – offers clinical, medical, and crisis care; (3) A Safe Home – provides foster care and adoption services and a young adult (16-21) self-sufficiency program; (4) Bridging the Gap – offers a boutique with clothing, toys, and household items, a food pantry, a library, and activity rooms for elementary, middle school, and high school students.
Ms. Adair read a very moving testimonial from a 28-year-old police officer who was physically and mentally abused by his mother and grandmother as a child but was saved by the Children’s Center and the foster care system. The police officer now teaches other officers how to recognize signs of abuse.
The Center’s $20 million budget is funded through Medicaid, State money, and private donations. To learn more, please go to www.thechildrenscenter.com.
Presenter - Abagael Adair Anna Gulyas 2022-08-24 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Virginia DiGiuseppe and Sandy Stanley

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Virginia DiGiuseppe and Sandy Stanley spoke to the Club as members and leaders of the Grosse Pointe Branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW).
The AAUW is a national organization that has been in existence for 140 years. The GP Branch was formed 78 years ago and consists of members with 12 board members and 4 executive officers. Its mission is to advance gender equity for women and girls through research, education, and advocacy. Its vision: diversity is their strength, equity is their commitment, inclusion is their destination, with the result being empowerment.
The focus is on STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) for girls at the elementary and middle school levels. A 10-girl Legos robotics team has been formed at Defer Elementary that competes in a league. Another team, of 11 girls, at Pierce Middle School won an award in a Legos robotics competition. The emphasis on STEM led to STEAM, with the inclusion of art. This program has 45 students, from ages 13-19, at local schools participating. The organization also awards scholarships at the national and local levels, with four awarded in Grosse Pointe last year.
Through public policy, it is looking to change legislation, with the Equal Rights Amendment and the Fair Pay Act as the primary areas of focus. Nationally, it has a program in place called Two-Minute Activist to encourage legislators to fight for equal pay, family leave, and to stop sexual harassment.
www.grossepointe-mi.aauw.net www.aauw.org
Presenters - Virginia DiGiuseppe and Sandy Stanley Anna Gulyas 2022-08-10 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - David Eardley

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On August 3, David Eardley was officially inducted into the club. Eardley is the new Senior Pastor at Grosse Pointe Methodist Church and has been a pastor at many churches throughout Michigan. Prior to the Grosse Pointe Rotary Club, he has been a member of the Frankenmuth and Rochester Rotary Clubs. Welcome Aboard, David!
New Member - David Eardley Anna Gulyas 2022-08-03 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Caitlyn Stark

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Caitlyn Stark spoke to the Club as the President of the Cadillac Area Chamber of Commerce (CACC).
The Cadillac Area Chamber of Commerce has been a visible business leader that advocates and drives business opportunities. Through business alliances, it is a catalyst for its membership and provides a persuasive regional voice benefiting its communities. It is made up of two full-time and two part-time employees and 340 members.
The CACC’s purpose is to provide advocacy, exposure, and connections for its member businesses and alliances. The exposure can be on a regional or national basis as three of the corporations in the area are foreign owned. A quarterly newsletter connects the members.
Stark is proud of the fact that only one restaurant in the area closed due to Covid. The CACC was a strong advocate for its members with the State of Michigan, regarding the restrictions that were imposed throughout the pandemic.
To learn more, please visit www.cadillac.org
Presenter - Caitlyn Stark Anna Gulyas 2022-08-03 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Julie Huellmantel

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Julie Huellmantel spoke as Early Intervention Specialist for the Grosse Pointe Public School System.
Early Intervention is a system of services that helps infants and toddlers with developmental delays or disabilities. It helps them learn the basic and brand-new skills that typically develop during the first three years of life, such as physical, cognitive, communication, social/emotional, and self-help skills.
Early On is a state-wide system of early intervention services mandated by federal legislation (Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act). It’s designed to help families find the support and services to promote the development of their infants and toddlers. Its purpose is to enable young children (birth to three) to be active and successful participants in a variety of settings – in their homes, with their families, in childcare, preschool, and in the community.
In determining eligibility for the program, Ms. Huellmantel analyzes the child’s developmental history, conducts a routines-based interview, observes the parent and child interact, and looks at medical documentation (health, hearing, and vision). The evaluation looks at the developmental delay in five areas: cognitive, physical, communication, social or emotional, and adaptive. Parent input is considered in all of these areas.
When a child is eligible, an Individual Family Service Plan is put together. These plans are reviewed every six months, if not sooner, and the services available include vision, audiology, nursing, nutrition, and health. They are provided within a family’s routine.
The idea of the program is to coach the parents to be the best teachers possible and to enhance interaction. To make a referral or learn more, visit www.1800earlyon.org.
Presenter - Julie Huellmantel Anna Gulyas 2022-07-27 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - David Newhouse

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David Newhouse spoke to the club as the International Trade Development Manager at Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC).
The mission of the MEDC is to achieve long-term economic prosperity for Michiganders by investing in communities, enabling the growth of good jobs, and promoting Michigan’s strong image worldwide. Its strategic focus is to position Michigan at the leading edge of economic development in the nation.
The MEDC has 9 pillars of business development and Mr. Newhouse works with the international trade component. It collaborates with economic development partners and focuses on established small, non- agricultural, businesses companies that are export-ready. Its objectives are to increase both export sales and entries into new markets.
It started the Michigan State Trade Expansion Program in 2011 which offers financial incentives to provide companies with a competitive edge in the global marketplace. The MEDC has international trade centers in almost every country, which serves 100+ global markets.
The MEDC offers export services in areas such as legal, market research, and website localization. Mr. Newhouse’s department will be involved in numerous trade events in foreign countries over the next two years.
Presenter - David Newhouse Anna Gulyas 2022-07-20 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Joe Dyament

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In 2005, Mr. Dyament left the automotive work world to run his own business. He combined his marketing skills with his love of science to open a Foot Solutions franchise in St. Clair Shores.
The human foot has 26 bones, 33 joints, 100+ tendons, muscles, and ligaments, and hundreds of thousands of nerve endings. This can all lead to foot problems. Women are 4x as likely to encounter pain due to the types of shoes they wear and ill-fitting footwear cause 7 out of every 10 problems.
Pedorthics is the management and treatment of conditions of the foot, ankle, and lower extremities requiring the fitting, fabricating, and adjusting of pedorthic devices. As a pedorthist, he helps patients with shoe selection for fit and function. He assesses high/low arch, flexible/rigid foot, deformities, and AFOs (ankle foot orthosis). He considers himself a pharmacist of the foot, helping the patient prevent or reduce painful or disabling conditions of the foot and ankle.
Mr. Dyament modifies shoes by stretching or providing wedges and lifts. He also designs, fabricates, and adjusts orthotics (special shoe or heal inserts). Common foot issues include plantar fasciitis (heal pain), tendonitis, and metatarsalgia (pain at the ball of the foot).
When buying shoes, Mr. Dyament recommends that the purchaser be up and moving 4-8 hours before shopping, that both feet be measured, allow for some heel slip, and that you wear the shoes for at least 8 minutes. Expect to pay at least $130 for a decent walking/running shoe. He can be contacted at (586) 552-3668 or at scs@footolutions.com.
Presenter - Joe Dyament Anna Gulyas 2022-07-13 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Bryce Thomas

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Bryce Thomas is the Portfolio Investment, Budget & Compliance Manager for Ford Credit. She enjoys writing poetry and engaging in community service. She just moved to Grosse Pointe City. Please welcome her to the Club.
New Member - Bryce Thomas Anna Gulyas 2022-06-23 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Fiona Lacroix

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As GP South Interact Club’s media manager for the past two years and as a writer and page designer for the school newspaper, The Tower, Fiona Lacroix was well equipped for the duties of her internship. 

In addition to attending every meeting and fellowship event, Fiona took part in service projects such as the Moross Greenway clean-up, the GP Memorial Church food drives, and the Ford Estate watershed clean-up. She also promoted these Club’s activities in the media. One of her favorite projects was spotlighting the veterans in the Club for Veteran’s Day.

Fiona’s takeaways from Rotary include: The importance of community building, entering the year as a very young outlier and leaving with genuine connections;
Saying “yes” as opportunities come from exiting one’s comfort zone; Opportunity builds, as all of her experiences lead to new ones and leave her better equipped to handle them; Staying positive, as there were times she didn’t feel like attending a meeting, but then greatly enjoyed being there.

Before attending the University of Michigan in the fall, Fiona will be spending three weeks in France with seven classmate friends and then vacationing at her family cottage in Cross Village, MI.
Presenter - Fiona Lacroix Anna Gulyas 2022-06-22 04:00:00Z 0

Welcome Aboard, Anna!

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The Club is excited to announce the employment of Anna Gulyas as our 2022-23 Communications Intern. Anna will be a senior at Grosse Pointe South, where she will also take on the role of Associate Editor of the Tower Newspaper. She will manage the website, social media, and set-up for the club.
Welcome Aboard, Anna! Fiona Lacroix 2022-06-17 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can Returns

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Ted Everingham received the oil can from President Liz for his steadfastness and loyalty to friends, family and the Club.
Oil Can Returns Fiona Lacroix 2022-06-15 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Cindy Willcock

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Cindy Willcock, Director of Main Street Grosse Pointe, joined the club to share her efforts to support, revitalize and preserve our downtown.
Main Street America’s mission is to lead a movement committed to strengthening communities through preservation-based economic development in older and historic
downtowns and neighborhood commercial districts. It empowers communities to set their own destinies, offering a roadmap for locally owned, locally driven prosperity.

To help promote future development in The Village shopping district the City Council created the Grosse Pointe Downtown Development Authority
(DDA) in 2008. The DDA then became Main Street Grosse Pointe in 2020 after an extensive application process. There are 1,200 Main Street communities nationwide and 50 in Michigan.

The Main Street approach is dedicated to strengthening existing businesses and bringing in new ones that fit (a combination of local and national) and want to stay. Transformational strategies are organized around four points: Economic Vitality, Design, Promotion, and Organization. Economic Vitality focuses on capital, incentives, and other economic and financial tools to assist new and existing businesses. Design supports a community’s transformation by enhancing the physical and visual assets that set
the commercial district apart. Promotion positions the downtown district as the center of the community and hub of economic activity. Organization involves creating a strong foundation for a sustainable revitalization effort, including cultivating partnerships and community involvement.
Main Street Grosse Pointe has a 5- year plan for the Village and is
excited to bring back events, such as Music on the Plaza, and the Sidewalk Sale. It is partially funded through taxes but relies on fundraising and sponsorship for 50% of its budget. Ms. Willcock is the only employee and succeeds through the help of volunteers.
Presenter - Cindy Willcock Fiona Lacroix 2022-06-15 04:00:00Z 0
Father Andrew Kowalczyk Receives Individual Vocational Service Award Fiona Lacroix 2022-06-08 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Joe LaVere

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Catch 22 Afghanistan: 15 Months of Fraud, Waste, and Abuse the NGO Way
For his vocational talk, Joe gave a presentation about the time he spent with a nonprofit organization (NGO) in Afghanistan from 2009 - 11. He was a 28-year-old structural engineer who applied for a job to evaluate buildings for their ability to withstand seismic activity.
The main NGO he worked with was International Relief & Development (IRD), which was 100% financed by USAID, a division of the State Department, with a budget of $1 billion to aid the country. The NGO operated under a cooperative agreement, which was much less stringent than a traditional contract.
Areas of waste included: AVIPA, a voucher program that provided seeds to grow wheat during a drought that ballooned to over $360 million; SPR, a road building project during a war that was budgeted $500 million, where over $14 million was unsupported by audit; HRLS, a catch-all of support functions. Joe’s work evaluating buildings operated through HRLS.

On top of the large amounts of money being provided to the NGO, they often were tasked with providing quality control over their own work. USAID eventually suspended IRD, the largest nonprofit contractor in Afghanistan.
Presenter - Joe LaVere Fiona Lacroix 2022-06-08 04:00:00Z 0

District Conference Debrief

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Rotarians flocked to Mackinac’s Grand Hotel for a beautiful weekend celebrating the service of district 6400.
Past District Governor Kim Towar received the William H. Ives Lifetime Achievement Award from District Governor Aruna Koushik, and Diane and Ron Strickler and Sharon and Steve McMillan were recognized as Major Donors to the Rotary Foundation. Congratulations to all!
District Conference Debrief Fiona Lacroix 2022-06-05 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters Tom Youngblood and Cathy Champion

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The club welcomed Tom Youngblood and Cathy Champion, seasoned realtors of the Pointes, to share their perspective on the current market and property tax assessments.
With the Headlee Amendment in 1978 and Proposal A in 1995, the amount that a homeowner’s property tax can be increased in a given year has been capped to avoid large fluctuations. The maximum increase is 5%. A home’s assessed value is determined at the end of the year and a Notice of Assessment is mailed out by the municipality in February. It contains the Assessed Value (SEV), which reflects 50% of its true cash value (which can go up or down by any amount) and a Capped Value. The taxable value is either the SEV or capped value, whichever is less. With the cap, if one owns a home for a number of years, the home’s taxable value can become much less than its assessed value. This amount is reset when a house is sold, and that new taxable amount will show up in the calendar year after purchase.
Homeowners can appeal their assessment before a Board of Review (using GP Farms rules). It’s up to the individual to present information as to why their assessment is wrong and it’s recommended to hire a realtor or a fee assessor to determine the amount. If dissatisfied with the review, the next step is going before the State Tax Tribunal.
Presenters Tom Youngblood and Cathy Champion Fiona Lacroix 2022-05-25 04:00:00Z 0

Fellowship at the Whiskey Six

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Rotarians gathered at the Whiskey Six for a night of fellowship and fun. Attendees shared stories, caught up, and enjoyed the good company.
We’ll be back at the Village Grille with a guest speaker on Wednesday, May 25.
Fellowship at the Whiskey Six Fiona Lacroix 2022-05-18 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Lisa Valee-Smith

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PR Hall of Fame Inductee and Philanthropist Lisa Vallee-Smith grew up in GP Woods with two older brothers and a younger sister. She attended a small liberal arts college in Indiana before transferring to Wayne State, where she became a serious student with a passion for journalism and marketing.

Her employment started as the Director of Public Relations at Detroit Renaissance, which worked on the Detroit Jazz Festival, the Thanksgiving Day Parade, and the Detroit Grand Prix. She was also the president of Franco Public Relations Group for three years in the 1990s before starting her own public relations company, Airfoil Group, in 2000. Over the years, the company’s clients have included Microsoft, eBay, and PayPal. She is currently its CEO but is transitioning her way into retirement.
Ms. Vallee-Smith is now in the “bonus chapter” of her life, making a positive impact on our community through the Smith Family Foundation that she co-founded with her husband, Jeffrey. She believes that they have donated $500,000 over the last 5 years, with the main beneficiaries being Ascension St. John Hospital, Forgotten Harvest, and growing the sport of lacrosse in the City of Detroit.
Her “third son” Liam McIlroy, a GP South graduate, gave a short summary of his efforts on the lacrosse front as the Cass Tech Boys Lacrosse coach and the Director of the Detroit Box Lacrosse Association.

Ms. Vallee-Smith surprised us at the end of her talk by making a donation to the Club’s Foundation. It was very much appreciated!
Presenter - Lisa Valee-Smith Fiona Lacroix 2022-05-11 04:00:00Z 0

Interact Packs 150 Lunches for the Homeless

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The Grosse Pointe South Interact club packed 150 lunches for the homeless! Members donated snacks, wrote kind notes, and packed the bags for Community & Home Supports, Detroit.
Interact Packs 150 Lunches for the Homeless Fiona Lacroix 2022-04-27 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jessica Keyser

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Member, Library Director, and guest speaker Jessica Keyser provided so many valuable updates on renovations at the Grosse Pointe Libraries.
Central Branch is entering phase two of renovations, which will begin this June, and include a drive through pick-up window! The Woods Branch will receive a Maker’s Space, fresh finishes, another service desk, and more.
The ongoing renovations are adapting older buildings for the ever-changing needs of the community, and ensuring our public spaces will continue to be well-loved.
Presenter - Jessica Keyser Fiona Lacroix 2022-04-27 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Dr. Ricardo Gazel

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Dr. Gazel, the father of Nina Gazel, has worn many hats. His personal and work life have taken him to many different careers in locations around the world. Growing up in a small town in the northeastern part of Brazil without electricity and indoor plumbing, Dr. Gazel’s dad, a dentist without a university education, would read the classics out loud to his children every night. At age 11, he moved to the capitol to further his education, having to adapt to a new environment that included electricity, indoor plumbing, and learning how to take a bus to school.
After receiving a B.A. in Economics from University of Minas Gerais, Brazil, Dr. Gazel worked in the Amazon for a year, where he met his future wife, Chris Horak. He soon followed her to the United States not knowing how to speak English. He adapted to this challenge by learning through watching multiple episodes of Sesame Street and eventually received a M.A. and a Ph.D. in Economics at the University of Illinois.

Dr. Gazel then taught at the University of Nevada Las Vegas and has held positions at the Federal Reserve Bank in Kansas City, the Inter-American Development Bank in Washington D.C., and the World Bank in Angola and Mozambique. Each move required adapting to new cultures, going from the conservativeness of Kansas City to the cosmoplitation nature of Maryland, to the poverty in Africa. For the past few years, he has had many ventures in Brazil.
With the upcoming birth of Nina’s baby in June, Dr. Gazel is looking forward to receiving his “highest degree” – first-time grandfather.
Presenter - Dr. Ricardo Gazel Fiona Lacroix 2022-04-13 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Sofia Farah

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Ms. Farah is a member (and Rotary foundation chair) of a new club, chartered in February 2022, called the Club of Global Partners in Peace. It is based in District 7730 out of North Carolina and started with 27 members from 18 countries. It consists of peace practitioners and Rotary Peace Fellow alumni mobilizing at all levels – in local communities, on national programs, and at global policy tables.
Rotary has a long history of peacebuilding, doing so since before WWI. This club’s vision is to create community as a place of support, comfort, learning, and safety and its goal is to partner in Rotary to amplify peacebuilding around the world.
As a new club, it is trying to build a solid foundation where different time zones and access to resources don’t prevent anyone from taking part. Ms. Farah shared a video where members from around the world gave their vision as to how to build peace. This included Laurie Smolenski, a former Grosse Pointer, who has a rich Rotary history.
Learn more about the club here: rotaryglobalpartnersinpeace.org
Ms. Farah is the executive Director at the American Federation of Ramallah, Palestine. The organization’s goal is to connect Ramallites across the country and educate the American public about the rich Palestinian culture. She was born and raised in Chile to a Palestinian father and Spanish mother. Her family has always fought for human rights, which led her to a Masters in global studies at the University of North Carolina, where she also received a Certificate in International Peace and Conflict Resolution.
Presenter - Sofia Farah Fiona Lacroix 2022-04-06 04:00:00Z 0

Food drive success!

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Thank you to those who donated their time or goods to the April drive-by food drive! Your support made it another success for the Second Mile Center and Community Treehouse. Mark Cory, Diane Strickler, Scott Matthews and Bob Lucas volunteered alongside members of GPMC, and by 11 o'clock, they had filled an entire van and half of a vehicle with donations, including men's clothing items.
Food drive success! Fiona Lacroix 2022-04-02 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Donnie Cook

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The club was excited to welcome Donnie Cook, owner of Lou’s Pet Shop! Donnie and his business bring so much joy to the community through pets, and have branched out into GP Zoology, located at 21151 Mack Ave.
Since last October, the 1,500 square foot facility has offered educational nature programs and can host schools, community events, scout badges, story times, science camps and private parties.
Mr. Cook has a federal license to rescue exotic animals, such as a 60 lb. tortoise that outgrew its home. Some of the animals, including an orphaned 2-toed sloth (who was fed zucchini during the talk) are ambassador animals for presentations. The facility also breeds animals, such as geckos and snakes for purchase and the eggs from the breeding process are available to be studied by the local high schools. (We also had the pleasure to see a 15-year-old tarantula).
The GP in its name has a double meaning -- Grosse Pointe, but also Green Planet. The company teaches one to be conscious of the environment with a motto of “education through nature.”
To learn more, please visit: www.gpzoology.com
Presenter - Donnie Cook Fiona Lacroix 2022-03-30 04:00:00Z 0

New Member: Carolyn Graham

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Welcome to our newest member, Carolyn Graham!
Carolyn has lived in in Grosse Pointe City for a few years. She is a former principal and teacher, now offering tutoring services as the owner of the Tutor Doctor. Her mentor is Ted Everingham. The club is so excited to welcome her (and pass on the new member trophy).
New Member: Carolyn Graham Fiona Lacroix 2022-03-23 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Gerald Wade

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The USADD – GDA (greater Detroit area) has 70 years of experience serving people impacted by substance abuse, operating under the principle of Recovering with Dignity. There are three components of its service: prevention, treatment, and recovery.
Mr. Wade works in the area of prevention through S.T.E.P.S. (Strong Teens Excelling in Prevention Services). It accepts ages 12-16 and one can stay in the program through age 20. The goal is to prevent (or delay) the use of alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs. Studies show there is less a chance of addiction the later one starts “experimenting”. The system offers year-round programming, twice a week. It also offers summer internships with activities, such as lock-in events and school tours, and has a radio show on WMKM 1440. (Covid has obviously impacted what is available).
Individuals can find the NCADD’s services through social media or by contacting them directly by phone.
To learn more, please visit: www.ncadd-detroit.org
Presenter - Gerald Wade Fiona Lacroix 2022-03-23 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Kim Towar

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Being a Rotarian for 30 years, Kim Towar has definitely witnessed the impact of the Rotary Foundation.
Donations from Rotarians across the world accumulate in millions of dollars donated to ending polio, supporting education, and more.
“Our world needs what Rotary gives more than ever before,” Kim said.
Becoming a Rotary International Donor is one of the easiest ways to make a difference. $10/month equates to one polio vaccine for progress.
To become a donor or see the amazing impact the funds are making, visit:
Presenter - Kim Towar Fiona Lacroix 2022-03-16 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter -  Lauren Knill

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Lauren Knill shared an amazing presentation, highlighting the inspiring work done by Empowerment Plan.
Right here in Detroit, the group is providing supportive employment for individuals experiencing homelessness through the production of sleeping bag coats. Each person is able to earn a stable income, find secure housing, and regain their independence.
In 2020, 7,388 coats were produced in Detroit and 9,553 were distributed in 41 states and 2 countries. Since its inception, 95 jobs have been created, 100% of its employees and graduates are stably housed, and 55,000 coats have been distributed globally.
The Empowerment Plan makes coats to hire people, it doesn’t hire people to make coats. The typical employee is there for two years before moving on to allow others to have the same opportunity. To learn more, visit: www.empowermentplan.org.
Presenter - Lauren Knill Fiona Lacroix 2022-03-09 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Ed Boyd

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“When we talk about the gap of learning in our children, it really isn’t intelligence– it’s experience,” Ed Boyd, founder of Connect the Dots Consulting shared.
Connect the Dots Consulting works with Results Mentoring -- an organization that focuses on redirecting student behaviors using mentoring, physical training, and tutoring programs -- to provide trips to young men who live in the Detroit metropolitan area. It encourages them to look beyond the place they live, and to observe the opportunities that are available to them in other places. The idea is that if they see more, they can do more.

Prior to a two-year Covid hiatus, the organization has conducted four trips over a five-day period to Washington DC and New York City. From Monday to Friday in early August, forty teenage boys and ten chaperones visit museums, a network television station, black owned companies, and go to a baseball game. At least 90% of the young men who go on the trips have never been outside of the metro Detroit area. Plans are in the works for an August trip this summer.

The participants are referred by like-minded people at area schools and churches. These same people will then mentor the attendees through their programs. Getting
one outside of their neighborhood allows them to actually see themselves in these new environments. The trip is an incredible bonding experience for all involved. The bus on Monday morning is very quiet but the bus returning on Friday is “on fire” with excited talk and new friendships.
It costs around $1,000 per attendee and the organization makes it free for each. The hope is to expand the program to multiple trips each year and to provide one for teenage girls.
To donate, please go to www.resultsmentoring.org.
Presenter - Ed Boyd Fiona Lacroix 2022-03-02 05:00:00Z 0

Rotary International turns 117

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In honor of Rotary’s anniversary, Dave Colton wished everyone a happy World Understanding and Peace Day. He also brought a cake for the occasion, and went on to share some Rotary Facts:
1905: Paul Harris and three other gentlemen started Rotary in Chicago. Its name is derived from the fact that the meetings rotated between four locations. Paul Harris’ wife, Jean, may have been the “real founder” of Rotary as her diary notes that “Paul and his friends need to find other places to drink and smoke cigars.”
1908: The second club was formed in San Francisco.
1910: The first international club was started in Winnipeg, Canada.
1914: The first Rotary Convention took place in Houston.
1918: The Rotary Foundation was started after $26.50 was left over after a Convention.
1921: Rotary is now in six continents and the name Rotary International was adopted.
The first Rotary float in the Rose Bowl Parade took place in 1923 and has been a constant since 1980. Admiral Perry took a Rotary flag to the South Pole in 1922.
Worldwide there are 1.4 million Rotarians in 33,000 clubs, which fall into 535 Districts. Our District 6400 has 52 clubs. When Jennifer Jones becomes RI President in 2022-23, she will be the third one from our District – Dick Hedke (Detroit) in 1946-47 and Hugh Archer (Dearborn) in 1988-89. One RI negative: women were not allowed to become members until 1989. It required the Supreme Court to step in to make this happen.
Dave is a huge fan of the youth exchange program, with he and Kim having hosted six students. The first exchange took place in 1927 and became an official program in 1972. The hope is for the exchanges to start back up in the next couple of years.
Rotary International turns 117 Fiona Lacroix 2022-02-23 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Susan Acton

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Susan Acton, president of the GP League of Women Voters, informed the club on the league's mission and ongoing efforts
Committed to non-partisanship, diversity, and equity, the league informs and reforms.
There are two upcoming programs open to the public: learn about women leading in the Pointes on March 23, and what infrastructure lies beneath our streets in April.
Membership is available at an array of levels, and not just for women! To learn more about how to get involved, voting rights, or ongoing advocacy, visit: lwvgrossepointe.org
Presenter - Susan Acton Fiona Lacroix 2022-02-16 05:00:00Z 0
2/16 Meeting is Virtual Only Fiona Lacroix 2022-02-16 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter John C. Mozena

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John C. Mozena, President of The Center for Economic Accountability presented How to Grow an Economy: Lessons from Watching it Done Wrong.
What should a government be looking to achieve through economic development? The economy should be growing, resilient, provide opportunity, inclusive, provide a desirable quality of life, and be able to support public services. Trying to achieve this, sometimes subsidies are awarded.
There are 10 potential incentive programs, including tax credits, tax rebates, sales tax abatements (which Dan Gilbert receives for his downtown construction), utility discounts, and tax-free zones. John is a proponent of the free market system, which does not include subsidies. He says that research shows, with very little argument, that they do not create jobs, don’t grow economies, harm a state’s long-term fiscal health, artificially increase inequality (only large companies receive them), discourage innovation, and increase the burden on other taxpayers. In the best-case scenario, only 25% of companies base their site selection on financial incentives and it barely ranks in the top 10 of the factors considered.
Going with in-state small businesses is the best way to grow GDP, personal income, and employment and it helps if governments are not too burdensome in the process. For example, to start a restaurant in Detroit, the City requires 15 license/permit fees totaling $6,545, dealing with 9 different agencies, 12 in-person activities, and filling out 20 different forms. In all there are 77 separate steps. (This is not out of line with other major cities).
Using a garden vs. meadow analogy, John favors the meadow where nature (the free market) dictates its growth. The government steps in only when necessary.
Presenter John C. Mozena Fiona Lacroix 2022-02-09 05:00:00Z 0

Success for Second Mile Center

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With great turnout, two cars were stuffed full of food and needed supplies on Saturday morning, then delivered to the Second Mile Center. The next drive will be the first Saturday of April from 10-11 AM at Grosse Pointe Memorial Church.
Success for Second Mile Center Fiona Lacroix 2022-02-05 05:00:00Z 0


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Due to the predicted severity of the impending snowstorm, and only after carefully considering the options, the weekly Rotary meeting scheduled for Feb 2 has been cancelled.
MEETING CANCELLED Fiona Lacroix 2022-02-02 05:00:00Z 0

Passing the Torch

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Welcome to our newest member, Cissie Cappola!
She was born and raised in Grosse Pointe Farms and lived outside of Michigan for several years, before moving back to Grosse Pointe in 2017. She joined Rotary to give back to the community of her roots. Cissie introduced Roger Hull to his wife, Jean, so he “owes her big time” and will be her mentor.
Passing the Torch Fiona Lacroix 2022-01-26 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Richard Allison

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Rotarian and Veteran Richard Allison spoke on how he uses family correspondence for hobby writing personal military histories.

He primarily uses war letters written home as his writing material.

“As a rule, I estimate only 10 percent or so of what is written in letters will end up in any story. Most of what is written is boring to the point of dreadful!” Allison said.

But when Allison heard of a chronicle written by Pearl Harbor survivor Paul Harkins (pictured), of the sunken California, he knew he’d found a remarkable story. Paul Harkins’ granddaughter shared the recount with Richard, who was able to present Paul’s plight to the club yesterday.

Paul witnessed the aftermath of an explosion which penetrated the main deck and killed 50 US sailors. He and his men narrowly escaped the area, but still managed save a seriously wounded sailor on board, who with their help, would live.

Allison has written three books about similarly remarkable WWII history, all available on Amazon.
Presenter - Richard Allison Fiona Lacroix 2022-01-26 05:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Allen Littlejohn and Kelly Littlejohn: Sickle Cell Anemia

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Allen, age 20, accompanied by his father, Kelly, shared his story about living with Sickle Cell Anemia. Allen spent much of his childhood and teen years in the hospital.
Sickle Cell is a red blood disorder, inherited when both parents carry the gene. Healthy red blood cells are smooth, round, and bendable to easily flow through blood vessels and carry oxygen. With Sickle Cell, the cells can change shape and form a sickle, or crescent. They can become stiff and sticky, blocking blood flow and breaking down inside the blood vessels. The sticking of the blood causes tremendous pain by not allowing oxygen to organs and tissues. Around 100,000 people in the U.S. have Sickle Cell, with 90% being of African descent. The disease likely comes from evolution’s attempt to protect against malaria.
Allen’s symptoms typically start in his lower back and chest and he tries to manage them from spiking through his diet and staying hydrated. Unfortunately, his condition limits his ability to participate in physical activities and swimming.
Despite his battles, Allen was able to graduate high school and is currently learning Japanese with the hope to travel there to study culinary arts and Japanese cuisine. His goal is to become an award-winning Executive Chef.
For a short video on Sickle Cell, go to https://youtu.be/%awUisynQoU
Presenters - Allen Littlejohn and Kelly Littlejohn: Sickle Cell Anemia Fiona Lacroix 2022-01-19 05:00:00Z 0

Stephen Cornillie's New Member Presentation

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Steve was born and raised in Grosse Pointe Woods where he and his three siblings followed the same educational path – St Joan of Arc, Grosse Pte North, and Michigan State. At MSU, he received a degree in Supply Chain Management.
Upon graduation, he worked in Washington DC for IBM and Booz Allen Hamilton over a five-year period. He then worked for three years in IT for Quicken Loans before his current careers at FreightRoll, since 2018, and Hill Mortgage, since 2021. FreightRoll’s primary focus is digitizing bills of lading and post shipment reconciliation. Removing the paperwork from the process, they use tablets to capture signatures and store data. Once items are shipped, they can document overages, shortages, and damage in real time so the parties can begin the claim process. Steve rented office space near Hill Mortgage and eventually joined the company part-time. As an independent mortgage broker, his job is to price loans through several wholesale lenders, such as UWM and Home Point. This job is trending from part-time to full-time.
While working two jobs last year and studying for his mortgage license, to help with stress he read a book called the Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod. To bring structure to his life, he started following the book’s six-step daily routine: Silence, Affirmation, Visualization, Exercise, Reading, and Scribing. These steps allow him to think about what he wants to accomplish that day, reflect on things he has done, and examine what he can do to become a better all-around person.
In his free time, he enjoys golf, MSU and Detroit sports, DCFC soccer, attending concerts, and spending times with many of his high school and college friends who live in the area. Steve became engaged to his fiancé Lauren on August 11, 2021 and has plans for a fall wedding.
Stephen Cornillie's New Member Presentation Fiona Lacroix 2022-01-12 05:00:00Z 0

Interact Brightens the Holiday Season

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Leading up to 2022, the GP South Interact Club made sure to brighten the holidays for others through several service projects:
Nov 18: The North and South Interact clubs collaborated to make wreaths for a senior living home.
Dec 8: Interacters packed lunches for the homeless filled with snacks and kind, encouraging notes.
Dec 22: Interact celebrated the last day before break with a holiday card-making party. With cookies and music, the club crafted cards for seniors at the Helm.
Interact Brightens the Holiday Season Fiona Lacroix 2022-01-01 05:00:00Z 0

A Holly Jolly Happy Hour

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The club gathered for a night of festivities and fellowship at Cellar 313. It was full of good food, company, and spirits. We’ll see everyone next in 2022.
Cheers to a happy and healthy New Year!
A Holly Jolly Happy Hour Fiona Lacroix 2021-12-15 05:00:00Z 0

Welcome Aboard!

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Dave Colton and Rebecca Fannon were officially inducted as Rotarians. Dave has been an honorary member for 16 years, and Rebecca has been a communications specialist for the GP Public School System for… 16 years! The club is thrilled to welcome such experienced and generous individuals.
Welcome Aboard! Fiona Lacroix 2021-12-08 05:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Jamie Spriet and Joella Bush with Gianna House

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Gianna House is a pregnancy and parenting residence located in Eastpointe which was a vision in 2009 and became a reality in 2019. Its mission is to provide a safe residence for at-risk, pregnant girls and young women and their newborn infants. They provide spiritual, educational, and parenting support and resources to underserved women in their program. An example of this care is Desiree, who, at age 16, gave birth at Gianna House and was able to find a job and apartment. Due to her child becoming ill, she was unable to work and relied on the organization to provide supplies. Gianna House's care does not evaporate once a woman leaves their program, they continue to be a valuable resource.
Gianna House offers two programs. (1) Resident housing, long-term for up to a year after birth. Its capacity is 8 total (4 moms and 4 infants) ages 18-25 and it hopes to expand to 14 total and include ages 13-17. (2) Community Outreach, supplying parenting classes, baby items, clothing, car seats, and strollers.
There is currently a capital campaign to expand the services available to provide a haven for the young women that come to their doors. Disrupting the cycle of poverty and ensuring stronger, productive families through stable, safe housing has been their recipe for success. To learn more, please visit www.giannahouse.org.
Presenters - Jamie Spriet and Joella Bush with Gianna House Fiona Lacroix 2021-12-08 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Beth Konrad

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Beth is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists, an organization that strives to ensure the free exchange of information that is accurate, fair, and thorough.
Regarding any news story, the first question should be “what is news”? With ethical journalism, making this determination is a team effort that requires many meetings throughout a typical day. Aspects of a news story to consider are its impact, proximity, timeliness, prominence, and the human-interest angle. One should also ask if it will create controversy or conflict. An example of this is the school shooting in Oxford, where a local news station made the decision to not show the children hugging their parents upon leaving the school. It felt that it didn’t add to the story. Determining whether to report on a story, one should seek the truth. This requires validation by being able to verify its accuracy through attribution. If true, the potential harm a story could cause should also be considered. A real journalist should act independently, avoid conflicts of interest, and be transparent and accountable for any mistakes.
Regulating news stories has become extremely difficult with the changing media landscape. With the elimination of the Fairness Doctrine, that required any broadcast news to present balanced views, and the Telecommunications Act of 1996 that shields tech companies (Facebook, Twitter) from legal liability for what is posted on their sites, there is little incentive to keep fake news from being reported. There are many organizations that are trying to educate on real/fake news. www.poynter.org teaches different segments of society how to sort fact from fiction online. Reputable fact checking websites include www.snopes.com and www.politifact.com.
Presenter - Beth Konrad Fiona Lacroix 2021-12-01 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Rufus McGaugh

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Over 49 years, Rufus has travelled to all 252 countries in the world.
When he retired early from teaching in 2012, he discovered he was only 42 countries short of reaching this mark, so he set out to complete his list. The final country was Libya, which he was able to visit in 2017. In planning for his trips, Rufus divided the countries into three groups: physically challenging, like climbing the base of Mt. Everest in Nepal; politically difficult (dangerous); and expensive, which included south Pacific locations. Three of the most dangerous were Burundi, which is very repressed; Iraq, which he visited during the war; and Chad, which allowed very few Americans into the country.
Rufus is the author of three books that describe his travels with humor: Longitude and Latitude, with Attitude: One Man’s Quest to See the Entire World; Joyriding with a Terrorist in Yemen: and other Travel Tales; and Drowning in all Seven Continents. He also continues to give presentations, with pictures, at all three middle schools.
Presenter - Rufus McGaugh Fiona Lacroix 2021-11-17 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Mallory Bower with the MHPN

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The Michigan Historic Preservation Network’s mission is to advocate for Michigan’s historic places to contribute to the economic vitality, sense of place, and connection to the past. History is viewed as static, but we are always learning new things and reinterpreting what we know. Historic preservation is a movement to reuse old buildings to create a link to the past in a meaningful way that helps create a community identity. For 24 reasons as to why historic preservation is good for your community, go to www.placeeconomics.com. To learn more about the Network, please visit www.mhpn.org
Presenter - Mallory Bower with the MHPN Fiona Lacroix 2021-11-10 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter and New Member - Michael Newman

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Mike lives in Grosse Pointe with his wife, Catherine, and their two daughters, ages seven and four. He moved here because of work, expecting to stay a year or two, but fell in love with Grosse Pointe and Detroit.
His employer, Graham Media Group, owns seven local television stations around the country, including WDIV. The stations operate websites that provide breaking news, weather, and community news. As a Lead Developer/Architect, Mike builds software for these websites, including WDIV’s Click on Detroit. Local stations and media in this digital age are competing with Netflix and Amazon and Mike believes that local news, with compassionate stories offering solutions, is extremely important for communities. To keep this news flowing, he hopes everyone would be as willing to pay the same amount for local coverage as they are paying for streaming services. He is very proud of the staff at Click on Detroit and the service they provide, an example of this -- responding to each and every vaccine inquiry during the peak of Covid.
Mike was a Rotary exchange student to Turkey and is connected with Rotex, where non-Rotarians assist with exchange students. He felt the need to re-connect with Rotary and join our Club after sitting on a bench at the Tot Lot watching how much fun his daughters were having on the playscapes.
Presenter and New Member - Michael Newman Fiona Lacroix 2021-11-03 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Councilman Lev Wood

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Grosse Pointe Farms councilman Lev Wood presented on the efficiently, beauty, and need for rain gardens within the Pointes as Wednesday’s guest speaker.
Being on the city council, Mr. Wood’s goal is to be proactive in addressing flooding through hard engineering (cement) and soft engineering (soft gardens with pervious soil) which can slow the flow of water to the city’s sewer systems. Rain gardens are composed of deeply rooted, native plants which can also manage the flow from downspouts- making them suitable for the home garden, aswell. 
Presenter - Councilman Lev Wood Fiona Lacroix 2021-10-27 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - District Governor Aruna Koushik

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District Govenor Aruna Koushik thanked individual members of the Club for what they have done: Kim Towar for helping with the District Directory, Dave Colton, for being a “hope champion” following her theme of “illuminating hope” by giving water/Gatorade to sanitation workers, and Ted Everingham for becoming a Major Donor. Money received from those like Ted have just provided 45 artificial limbs for those in need in India.
The District’s goal for donations to the RI Foundation is $275,000. The District recently raised $10,000 through a skydiving event for Polio eradication, which turned into $30,000 with matching funds.
Each Club is being asked to submit an essay describing a service project that “illuminates hope” that will be put together in a magazine format for the District Conference. The Conference will take place from May 5-12, 2022 at the Grand Hotel. To show support for the District Governor and to learn more about Rotary, please register for two upcoming virtual events. On 10/30, from 9:00am to 11:00am, is One Rotary Summit, where Rotarians will share their successes with increasing membership, supporting the foundation, and launching service projects. On 11/9 at 7:00pm is Together We Grow, a foundation and membership event which will feature Jennifer, Jones, the RI President for 2022-2023.
You can register for these events and the District Conference at www.rotary6400.org.
Presenter - District Governor Aruna Koushik Fiona Lacroix 2021-10-13 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Alex J. Allen, III, President and
CEO of the Chandler Park

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The Chandler Park Conservancy is a non-profit corporation, formed in 2014 by the Chandler Park Promise Coalition.  Its mission is to develop exceptional educational, recreational and conservation opportunities for youth, and people of all ages. Its vision is of a revitalized Park, which is a 200-plus acre park owned by the City of Detroit. Annual visitors have increased from 5,000 before the Conservancy to 65,000 pre-Covid. The Conservancy has five areas of concentration: (1) Greening the community through environmental leadership by maintaining marshland, having a self-contained storm water management system, and providing ecology-related education; (2) Improving community health through sports and recreation; (3) Building community through sports with basketball courts, tennis courts, a football/lacrosse field used by local youth teams, and a soon to be opened skate park; (4) Sustaining the community through urban gardening; and (5) Exercising leadership for a Citywide Detroit Park Coalition. To help the Conservancy, consider championing a project, connecting it with donors, donating money personally, or volunteering.
Presenter - Alex J. Allen, III, President andCEO of the Chandler ParkConservancy. Fiona Lacroix 2021-10-06 04:00:00Z 0

Volunteering with Life Remodeled

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Rotary of Grosse Pointe was represented by 10 Rotarians on Wednesday, October 6, clearing blight from a Detroit neighborhood during the Life Remodeled 2021 Six Day Project. They were part of hundreds of volunteers mobilized to bring new life to six square miles surrounding the Durfee Innovation Society in the Central High School area.  
Volunteering with Life Remodeled Fiona Lacroix 2021-10-06 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - LaTonja Muhammad and E. Brian Cox

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“Send your child to college, leave your money at home,” guest speakers LaTonja Muhammad and E. Brian Cox advised at tonight’s meeting.
The team shared that message and their efforts through College Planning Genius to save families thousands in college tuition.
“College costs have increased by around 14,000% since the late 1970s,” Muhammad said, “and the No. 1 reason students drop out of college is because they run out of money.”
By advising families through scholarships, grants and loans, their organization does the unthinkable: it sees 85% of its students graduate in 4 years, without immense debt.
Presenters - LaTonja Muhammad and E. Brian Cox Fiona Lacroix 2021-09-29 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Chip Rhode

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Chip Rohde, President, and co-founder of the Rivertown Detroit Association.
Established in May 2010, The Rivertown Detroit Association is made up of 3,000 business owners, residents and interested individuals who are focused on making Rivertown Detroit better for all. They call this area “The Sliver on the River” and it runs from the Belle Isle Bridge to the Ren Cen with E. Jefferson on one side and the Detroit River on the other. The Association holds monthly meetings at different locations in the area, bringing in speakers such as Mayor Duggan, Chief Craig, and Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence.
It works to better the area by bringing the DSO to the Aretha Franklin Amphitheatre (highly recommended), holding an annual Fishing Fest for children, and providing scholarships to high school students. It also “adopted” a fire station by providing them with a state-of-the-art grill and a power washer. It’s currently involved with the restoration of the Broadhead Armory that is being converted into a war memorial and housing.
If you would like to be on the monthly mailing list, email chip@rivertowndetroit.org.
Presenter - Chip Rhode Fiona Lacroix 2021-09-23 04:00:00Z 0

Fun, Food, and Fellowship

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Rotarians met at Cellar 313 to kickoff another season of service. With plenty of charcuterie and good company, there were smiles all around. Rotarians reconnected by sharing stories, community updates, and club news. It was also the first official Rotary meeting for Communications Intern Fiona Lacroix. Meetings will return to the Village Grille on September 22, with a guest speaker attending.
View photos from the event here.
Fun, Food, and Fellowship Fiona Lacroix 2021-09-15 04:00:00Z 0

GPS Interact Club Returns

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The GP South Interact club is back in session! The club had an early start, meeting on just the second day of school to share out upcoming service and introduce new leadership. The all senior team and club advisor Kevin Cox are eager to begin another year of putting service above self, with volunteer efforts like tree planting and the Rotary Fun-Run. Their latest service was with Greening of Detroit, where they gathered materials for a community art installation.
GPS Interact Club Returns Fiona Lacroix 2021-09-08 04:00:00Z 0

Raffle Kick-Off

Posted on Aug 18, 2021
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Rotarians celebrated a summer of service and received their tickets for the McNeill Raffle! It was the last smile-filled meeting of the Summer, until meetings resume Wednesday, September 15.
Raffle Kick-Off 2021-08-18 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Kerrie M. Mitchell

Posted on Aug 11, 2021
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Kerrie M. Mitchell, VP of Marketing and Development at Matrix Human Services.

Matrix Human Services’ mission is to advocate for and serve the most vulnerable in the metropolitan Detroit community and empower individuals and families to enhance the quality of their lives and achieve self-sufficiency.  It operates multiple programs in more than 40 locations, with 500 employees, providing services to 20,000 individuals and families annually.

Matrix offers multiple services in three areas: (1) Early Childhood Education (birth to age 5).  It operates the largest Head Start program in the City, serving more than 1,500 children. (2) Youth Services (ages 11-17).  It strives to keep these children out of the judicial system and provide structure for college, a trade, or work.  (3) Adult Services.  This includes an on-line high school diploma program, assisting with personal economic goals, and training to secure employment.  It also includes a senior program to help them live healthy and active lives.  

To learn more about this great organization, please visit 


Presenter - Kerrie M. Mitchell 2021-08-11 04:00:00Z 0

Infinity Sky Award - Fred Ollison

Posted on Aug 05, 2021
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The last 2020-21 Club award, the Infinity Sky Award, was presented to Fred Ollison for his work on behalf of the Club over his 51 years of membership.
Infinity Sky Award - Fred Ollison 2021-08-05 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - James Lady

Posted on Aug 04, 2021
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On August 4th James “Jay” Lady spoke to us about Sojourning with Sasquatch & a Sleuth for the Truth.
Jay, a GP Park resident, developed his love of adventure growing up in southern Ohio with Davey Crockett and Daniel Boone as his heroes.  Both of whom have written about experiencing sasquatch encounters.  Davey Crockett’s was in 1836 and Teddy Roosevelt wrote about one in 1892.  In 1973, even the federal government recognized “big foot” 
Jay has one nighttime video encounter with what he firmly believes was a sasquatch and has audio recordings of their “language”.  He is in the process of making a documentary.  One thing he has learned over the years is to not talk about this subject with family and friends as it can lead to becoming a social outcast. 😊
As Mark Twain stated, “Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; truth isn’t.”  To learn more about Jay’s search, visit, Michigan Aboriginal Project - YouTube
Presenter - James Lady 2021-08-04 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Julie Jorgensen

Posted on Aug 04, 2021
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Please welcome Julie Jorgensen as our newest member!  Julie is a resident of GP Park, has three grown children, and works in the mortgage business for Direct Financial.  Not new to Rotary, Julie served as president of the Romulus Club in 2010-11.
New Member - Julie Jorgensen 2021-08-04 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Dr. Lerrylyn Nelson, PhD

Posted on Jul 28, 2021
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Our presenter on July 28th was Dr. Lerrylyn Nelson, PhD, CEO of The Think Tank 3D, Inc, and she spoke to us about "Inventing out of Necessity."
In addition to the dictionary definition of an inventor – a person who invented a particular process/device or who invents as their occupation – Dr. Nelson believes that this person needs to have a passion for change, have vision and insight, and the ability to identify a void.  The invention must also be viable or valuable.
There are 10 steps to inventing. (1) The ability to assess the community to determine a void; (2) Filter out whether the patent is a necessity or luxury; (3) The idea must address the identified void; (4) There must be a market for the idea; (5a) You need to be able to explain that the void is being addressed and why; (5b) You need to be able to explain what makes the idea different and why; (6)  Can the idea be feasibly accomplished; (7) You have successfully identified the processes to bring the idea to fruition so you move from the invention stage; (8) It’s time to consider applying for a
patent and asking if you have the skill set needed to apply for one. (9)
If the answer to 8 is “no”, considering seeking the advice of an attorney and/or accountant. (10) You need to ask why you are inventing.  If for the money, will anyone purchase the product, who much will you need to invest, and how long will it take to recoup the investment?  If for the sake of inventing, what will you do with the invention and how much will you need to invest?  If for the betterment of the community, besides the financial questions, how will it benefit the community?
Dr. Nelson and her partner have three very different approved patents: one that improves the safety of school buses; a collapsible, portable shower chair; and a pen size umbrella.    Only 36% of all patents are approved and the normal time frame for approval is 3 years. 
To learn more about Dr. Nelson, visit www.thethinktank3.com.
Presenter - Dr. Lerrylyn Nelson, PhD 2021-07-28 04:00:00Z 0
Passing of the Gavel 2021 2021-07-21 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Sierra Donaven

Posted on Jul 14, 2021
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Our presenter on July 14th was Sierra Donaven.  Sierra told us the story of how she arrived in Grosse Pointe Farms and Became a Rotarian.
Sierra is continuing fulfillment of God’s purpose for her life, marked by a long history of public and community service.  She sees Rotary as a way to collectively share our good beyond where we have been and where we are now.
Sierra’s father died when she was 4 years old and her mother suffered from alcoholism.  She attended 7 Detroit elementary schools before a police officer took her and her siblings out of abandonment, hunger, and despair.  She was placed at Childrens Village in Oxford, MI, a safe haven that she called home.
Being introduced to John Delorean at a young age, he was a father figure and had a tremendous impact on her life.  She saw him, again, when she was an ATF agent, and still felt that same father-daughter relationship. 
Sierra had her own legal battle, fighting an investigation and federal prosecution brought about by the  abusive actions of a Federal agent.   She was ultimately vindicated.
Sierra felt a need to live in Grosse Pointe and found the perfect house in the Farms.  She hit the ground running, receiving a beautification award, serving on the beautification committee, and having a seat on the City Council.
Before joining Rotary, Sierra knew nothing about the organization and our Club but she knew plenty of GP Rotarians.  She believes that each person was a marker/sign that God was directing her on a magical journey to Service Above Self.  Once you believe, the signs are everywhere.
Presenter - Sierra Donaven 2021-07-14 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Bob Lucas

Posted on Jul 14, 2021
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Richard Yeager-Stiver passed the Oil Can
to Bob Lucas for his work as
president during a very unusual year
where, for the most part, he ran
weekly meetings via the internet
sitting in a room by himself.
Oil Can - Bob Lucas 2021-07-14 04:00:00Z 0

Rotarians in the News

Posted on Jul 08, 2021
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There is a great article in the July 8th Grosse Pointe News.  Looking back, looking ahead: Rotary presidency changes hands  Page 1 section B.  Here is a link for those who have a subscription.  https://www.grossepointenews.com/articles/looking-back-looking-ahead-rotary-presidency-changes-hands/
Rotarians in the News 2021-07-08 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Detroit Abloom

Posted on Jun 23, 2021
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Our presenters on June 23rd were Tom Milano & Nancy Weigandt from Detroit Abloom.
What a wonderful program and organization to be involved with!
So many programs, events, workshops, and volunteer opportunities at Detroit Abloom! A lot of changes since their last visit three years ago.  This organization basically does flower farming on the east-side of Detroit.  They bought vacant land and have given local residents meaningful jobs. 
They started in 2015 with the help of the Kressege Foundation with a $76,000 grant.
We learned a lot about the monarch butterflies that are tagged and fly 2,800 miles to Mexico!
The also sell native plants, seeds, and of course flowers.
Recently they have built a wellness center, outdoor bathrooms using rainwater and compost toilets.  They even have a shower.  They also built an outdoor wood-burning oven for the community to gather and use.
I encourage everyone to visit their website for more details. www.detroitabloom.com
Presenters - Detroit Abloom 2021-06-23 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Michael Newman

Posted on Jun 23, 2021
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John Mozena introduced us to Michael Newman our newest and 10th new member this Rotary year!
Michael’s joining us is very much a homecoming for him.  He was a Rotary exchange student in 2003 sponsored by the Rotary Club of York, PA and spent a year in Izmir, Turkey; which he considers a life changing experience.
Michael’s reconnection to Rotary was based on his visits to our Rotary Tot Lot!  He and is wife Nicole have two daughters,  Catherine (Renne) 6 and Clara 3.  Upon using the Tot Lot with them he felt the need to rekindle his relationship with Rotary that has given him so much.  He also knows that form his experience it was an excellent way to give back to our community and world.
Michael graduated from Ohio University and works for the Graham Media Group as a Lead Developer /Architect specializing in software engineering and media communications.  He lives on Yorkshire in the Park.
We are sure with Michael’s experience and talents, he will be a great asset to our club.
Paul Rentenbach will be his mentor.
Welcome Michael!
New Member - Michael Newman 2021-06-23 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Richard Yeager-Stiver

Posted on Jun 23, 2021
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Vince passed the Oil Can on to Richard Yeager-Stiver for his good work opening up his church for Covid vaccines to our community and surrounding communities.
Oil Can - Richard Yeager-Stiver 2021-06-23 04:00:00Z 0

Detroit Abloom

Posted on Jun 19, 2021
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Paige Neihaus along with Rotarians Diane Strickler, Neil Sroka, Jackie Dale, and her son Mark Vanderhyden volunteered this past Saturday to work in the garden at Detroit Abloom. The location at 248 Manistique is always in need of volunteer gardeners on Saturdays
Paige reports that it was a hot, but enjoyable morning working in the garden!
Detroit Abloom 2021-06-19 04:00:00Z 0

Brilliant Detroit

Posted on Jun 19, 2021
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Grosse Pointe Rotary was able to collect 622 books (plus $1,500 to purchase books) for Brilliant Detroit.  These books will go into Detroit children’s homes this summer.  Thank you to Diane Strickler and Jessica Keysers for letting their homes be donation locations. Pictured with Diane Strickler is Calvin from Brilliant Detroit.
Brilliant Detroit 2021-06-19 04:00:00Z 0

Frank Sladen Scholarship Winners

Posted on Jun 16, 2021
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Before introducing each winner, Mark Weber read a little from the counselor recommendations.  All received glowing reports on their school and community involvement, their hard work, and their leadership.
From Grosse Pointe North:
-- Jordan Solomon will be pursuing a business administration degree at the University of Michigan. 
-- Imani Crutcher will be pursuing a business degree at Purdue University.
-- Alex Benner graduated early, and for the past 6 months, has been working toward a HVAC apprenticeship. 
From Grosse Pointe South:
-- Charlotte Parent will be attending the College of LSA at the University of Michigan.
-- Thomas Heath is applying for the IBEW Apprenticeship Program, with the goal to be a union electrical contractor. 
-- (The third winner from South was not in attendance).
Each recipient talked about some of their past accomplishments and ultimate goals.  A very impressive group of students.
Frank Sladen Scholarship Winners 2021-06-16 04:00:00Z 0

New PR Intern - Fiona Lacroix

Posted on Jun 16, 2021
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At our meeting on June 16th, Ted Coutilish introduced Fiona Lacroix as our first PR intern.  Fiona will be a senior at GP South and, starting in September, will manage and improve our communication and publicity through our website, social media and other platforms. As a bonus she will also help the Club with our audio/visual at meetings.
New PR Intern - Fiona Lacroix 2021-06-16 04:00:00Z 0

2019-20 Rotary award winners

Posted on Jun 09, 2021
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Due to the pandemic, 2019-20 Rotary of Grosse Pointe President Judy Masserang, center front, was not able to bestow awards to her fellow Rotarians for their dedicated service above self efforts during her term. However, thanks to so many Grosse Pointers being fully vaccinated, she was able to assemble most of her award winners at the June 9 hybrid meeting of Grosse Pointe Rotary at the Village Grille.
From left are John Minnis, inaugural Beacon Award winner
Roger Hull, Service Above Self Award
Jackie Dale, Rookie of the Year Award
Paul Rentenbach, Service Above Self Award
Rotary District 6400 Gov. Noel Jackson, who happened to be paying the club a visit;
2020-21 President Bob Lucas, Frank Sladen Visionary Award
Ted Everingham, Rotarian of the Year Award
Scott Matthews, Rising Star Award
Not present were: 
Phil MacKethan, Service Above Self Award
Kim Towar, Service Above Self Award
Dave Colton, Service Above Self Award
Peter Stroh, Frank Sladen Visionary Award
The late George McMullen with the prestigious Directors Award. 
One of the major accomplishments under Masserang's leadership was the $250,000-plus "Re-Imagining" of the Rotary Tot Lot at Elworthy Field at Notre Dame and Waterloo in Grosse Pointe. Many of the awards reflected individual Rotarians' efforts in making the Tot Lot project a success.
2019-20 Rotary award winners  2021-06-09 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jackie Dale

Posted on Jun 09, 2021
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Our fellow member, Jackie Dale, titled her talk today as, Is It Fair To All Concerned, Our Water
Jackie was impacted by a documentary on the Netflix series Rotten about the Nestle Corporation’s access to water in Michigan.  It pays very low fees for city water in some areas and to pump water in others. 
With the amount of bottle water consumed in the world, under Rotary’s 4 Way Test, is the company’s low-cost access to water, and the possibility of depleting water supplies, fair to all concerned?  At the very least, she believes it’s an area to explore.
Presenter - Jackie Dale 2021-06-09 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Aruna Koushik

Posted on May 26, 2021
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Our speaker on May 26th was Aruna Kousik, the 2021-22 District Governer Elect for District 6400.  Aruna spoke to us about India and Rotary over this last year
India is being hit hard by Covid 19 with the cremation locations full and dead bodies being lined up in front of people’s homes.  Many of the rural hospitals and clinics don’t have the equipment necessary to treat those who have the virus.
So far, Rotary has raised $200,000 for oxygen concentrators to be delivered to India.  Our District is partnering with another to raise funds and Rotary is partnering with Sewa International, a Hindu faith-based humanitarian non-profit that specializes in disaster relief and has Asian connections, to manufacture and deliver the concentrators.
Rotarians in India are also very involved in the process.  The concentrators are first delivered to large cities, like Calcutta, and then transported to government hospitals which treat the poor and to rural locations.
With vaccine production, storage, and delivery being patchy, the crisis created by Covid 19’ in India could continue for a while.  The best way to help is to contribute financially. 
Presenter - Aruna Koushik 2021-05-26 04:00:00Z 0

The Second Mile Center of Detroit - Clean Up

Posted on May 22, 2021
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On Saturday, May 22, seven Grosse Pointe Rotarians joined with ten Grosse Pointe Memorial Church members to clean up the grounds of The Second Mile Center of Detroit, founded in 2006 by Ruth Azar, wife of GP Rotary member Scott Matthews.  The Second Mile Center of Detroit provides services and develops partnerships to empower and strengthen people who live in Detroit’s 48205 zip code, considered to be the most dangerous in Detroit due to gang activity.  Ruth provides support services through charitable and educational means without discrimination based on race, color, national or ethnic origin – services like free after school programs, food pantry twice a week, free clothing and baby supplies, free community dinners, and no cost mobile health fair.
The Second Mile Center of Detroit - Clean Up 2021-05-22 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Beth Konrad

Posted on May 19, 2021
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On May 19th Beth Konrad gave us her "New Member Presentation".
Beth grew up in Poletown where her neighborhood spoke Polish.  Back in the 1950s, the cities were very segregated and her family had difficulty buying a home in Grosse Pointe due its point system and, after moving here, was unable to join any of the clubs.  These childhood obstacles helped define who she is and she is a firm believer in inclusion and equality. 
After college, Beth’s goal was to become a broadcast journalist.  At the time, there were no women on the radio and the only ones on television were doing weather forecasts.  Her first job was at WRIF where she provided hourly news updates and had a half-hour newscast at 4:30AM (as was required by the FCC).
Beth then moved to Chicago to work at a radio station, where her expanded duties included covering speeches, such as one by Spiro Agnew, and providing daily 5-minute national newscasts.   She returned to WRIF and part of her job involved researching and putting together news documentaries, which included stories on skydiving, the Moonies, and the lack of rules regarding the referral services for abortions.
After a long time away, Beth believes that Grosse Pointe has become a much more inclusive community and feels comfortable being back. 
Presenter - Beth Konrad 2021-05-19 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Dez Squire

Posted on May 12, 2021
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Our speaker on May 12th was Dez Squire, the Senior Racial Equity Organizer for the Michigan Roundtable for Diversity & Inclusion.
The Roundtable’s mission is to empower individuals to transform communities and the workplace to overcome racism, discrimination, systemic inequities, and institutional and inherent bias.  It centers its work on anti-racism with historical analysis through multi-generational storytelling. 
A component of the Roundtable is ALPACT which examines issues affecting police and community relations.  Its members (law enforcement, community leaders and elected/appointed government representatives) work to enhance the bonds of trust between the two by recommending strategies. There are now eight regional ALPACTs with 500 members state-wide.
To build bridges, the Roundtable brings people together to have tough conversations and discuss lived experiences.  This has been a struggle through virtual meetings this past year, but it is finding ways to stay connected by making phone calls to check on people and by putting together a resource sheet.
Presenter - Dez Squire 2021-05-12 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Eric Oberg

Posted on Apr 28, 2021
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Our presenter on April 28th was Eric Oberg, the Director of Trail Development at Rails-To-Trails Conservancy.
The Rails-To-Trails Conservancy’s mission is to build a nation connected by trails, reimagining public spaces to create safe ways for everyone to walk, bike, and be active outdoors.  Since 1986, it has worked to bring the power of trails to communities and there are now more than 40,000 miles across the country.
As an advocacy group, it works with states and the federal government to include trails and greenways in their budgeting.   The organization has expanded its role from simply promoting individual trails to having states collaborate and build comprehensive trail systems.
Three main components of this organization are: 1) the Great American Rail-Trail that would cover 3,700 miles, connecting Washington DC to the State of Washington and is over 50% complete; 2) Trail Nation, which brings to life their vison of trails at the heart of healthy, thriving communities; and 3) TrailLink, which, on your desktop or through an app, can help find trails around the country.  Links to all three can be found on www.railstotrails.org,
There is an inherent legacy in trails, one that honors the past, enriches the present, and provides a gift to the future.
Presenter - Eric Oberg 2021-04-28 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Vince Van Tiem

Posted on Apr 28, 2021
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Mark Weber passed the Oil Can to Vince Van Tiem for always putting service above self and for making us laugh at our weekly meetings.
Oil Can - Vince Van Tiem 2021-04-28 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Cindy Eggleton

Posted on Apr 28, 2021
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On April 28th Cindy Eggleton was inducted as a new member. Cindy is the CEO of Brilliant Detroit and a resident of Pleasant Ridge.  Cindy became interested in joining after sitting in on a few meetings, including her presentation, and seeing all of the good that the Club does and the camaraderie of the members.
New Member - Cindy Eggleton 2021-04-28 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Beth Konrad

Posted on Apr 28, 2021
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On April 28th Beth Konrad was inducted as a new member. Beth is the head of Konrad Communications and a GP Farms City Councilperson. Besides an impressive list of past and current designations, she is also the spouse of Club member, Frank Wilberding.
New Member - Beth Konrad 2021-04-28 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Todd Scott

Posted on Apr 21, 2021
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Our presenter on April 21st was Todd Scott, Executive Director of the Detroit Greenways Coalition.
The Coalition’s vision is for a strong, healthy, vibrant City of Detroit and region where a seamless network of greenways, green spaces, blueways, and complete streets is an integral part of people’s active lifestyle including day-to-day transportation and recreation.  It was able to sell this vision to the city with the improved health of its population and the resulting economic development.  The data has helped convince Mayor Duggan.
There are over 250 miles of bike lanes, routes, and trails in Detroit.  Mr. Scott talked about bike lanes on Jefferson and Livernois and how the Livernois lanes have brought traffic speeds back to posted limits and expanded traffic for local businesses.  There is a grant request being sought to completely renovate Jefferson, making the lanes more permanent.
Greenways have been greatly expanded.  They include RiverWalk, the Dequindre Cut, Southwest, Joseph Campau, and Joe Louis.  The Joe Louis Greenway will extend the Dequindre Cut to an over 27-mile loop around the city.  The hope is for all of these greenways to continue and/or expand on their construction in 2021.
The Coalition has also been instrumental in allowing for bike and foot traffic on the Gordie Howe Bridge and for the building of a bike trail between the road and the water on Belle Isle.  To learn more, go to www.detroitgreenways.org.
Presenter - Todd Scott 2021-04-21 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Mark Weber

Posted on Apr 21, 2021
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Suzanne Klein passed the Oil Can to Mark Weber for making a major investment in our future in his work as the scholarship committee chair.
Oil Can - Mark Weber 2021-04-21 04:00:00Z 0

Rotary-Sponsored Great Lakes Watershed Cleanup at The Ford House

Posted on Apr 19, 2021
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Rotary District 6400 Great Lakes Watershed Cleanup initiative is an effort to focus attention to the Great Lakes, with events being held between Saturday April 17 and Saturday April 24 to coincide with Earth Day. The Rochester Institute of Technology reports that 22 million + pounds of trash and plastic pollution ends up in the Great Lakes each year. We don’t, of course, live on one of the “Great Lakes,” but we love our lake, right?  So, on Saturday April 17, 45 people from our sponsoring Club, GP Sunrise, WSU Rotaract Club, GP South Interact Club, and Scout Troop 34 pitched in for 2 hours of cleanup. Diane Strickler, the event chair, reports: “It was such a lovely day. Ford House employees were great to work with. Even Ford House President and CEO Mark Heppner led a team. Ford House provided drinks and donuts. The grounds of Ford House were beautiful.”  It is estimated that they picked up 330 pounds of debris. 
Rotary-Sponsored Great Lakes Watershed Cleanup at The Ford House 2021-04-19 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - 2020-21 GPSH Interact Students

Posted on Apr 14, 2021
2020-2021 A Year of Interact Service Presentation.
Through a power point presentation, the students detailed their activities, with a focus on safe outdoor projects:
-- Charlotte Parent: Moross Greenway Fall Clean-up in September.  Grosse Pointe Rotary Club food drive in January. 
-- Fiona LaCroix: The Helm’s Food Drive in December, dropping off food items.  Walk in My Shoes fundraiser shoe collection to add playground equipment at River Bends Park.
--Ron Lyke: Henry Ford Health System eGreeting Cards project in December – February thanking healthcare workers.  Ford House Watershed Clean-up this month, Saturday
-- Paloma Beacham: Making Christmas/Holiday cards for seniors and churches in December – January, dropping off cards at St. Clare of Montefalco, the Helm, and Sunrise Assisted Living
Kevin Cox congratulated the Interact students for their dedication and service during a most difficult year and thanked the Rotarians for their support.  He especially complemented Rotarian George McMullen posthumously for his loyal dedication to Interact with his active involvement and service over the years.
Presenters - 2020-21 GPSH Interact Students 2021-04-14 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Chris Lambert

Posted on Apr 07, 2021
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Our presenter on the 7th was Chris Lambert, founder of Life Remodeled. (Pictured between Liz Vogel and Ted Everingham)
Life Remodeled is bridging people across divides to help transform each other’s lives.  Since 2014, the organization has spent $35 million working on four schools (Cody, Osborn, Denby, and Durfee Elementary), the first three still operating as schools with Durfee becoming an innovation society.   All of this work, plus cleaning up blight in 1,660 city blocks was accomplished through the help of over 68,000 volunteers.
Other work that the organization performs includes repairing owner occupied homes by providing either a new roof, furnace, or windows.  Believing that working shoulder to shoulder on projects allows polar opposites to find common ground, it offers “race remodeled”, a program bringing people of different backgrounds and race together to have difficult discussions. 
The Durfee Innovation Society is a way for Life Remodeled to create a dynamic environment for the best and brightest, instead of creating new programs themselves.  It is very selective in picking its tenants, requiring that they either work in education, or human resources or offer workforce development. For the community, the location offers a safe center for online learning and after-school tutoring. Pre-pandemic, it also offered space rentals and programs/events for children, youth, adults, seniors. 
Our Club has participated in Life Remodeled’s Six Day Project in the past, which is scheduled for October 4-9 this year.  Details on registering to volunteer will be sent out when available.  To learn more about this organization, please visit www.liferemodeled.org.
Presenter - Chris Lambert 2021-04-07 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Alex Bunker

Posted on Mar 31, 2021
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Our presenter on March 31st was Alex Bunker from Recycle Across America.
Recycling is one of the most important actions society can do to simultaneously improve the environment, create jobs, grow the economy, contribute to sustainable manufacturing, reduce waste from going into oceans and waterways, and to mitigate climate change.
For recycling to work in the U.S., it will require that all 380 million of us know how to recycle properly.  Inconsistent and confusing labels on recycle bins lead to mistakes which cause people to be apathetic and/or skeptical about recycling.
Garbage being thrown in recycling bins destroys the economics, quality, and demand for recyclable materials. Unacceptable contamination levels on our recycling shipments to foreign countries have led them to stop or drastically reduce what they will accept.
RAA is working with Congress toward federally standardized labels for recycling bins.  Studies have shown that these labels have substantially reduced hauling fees for school districts/companies.  Recycling correctly will help eliminate the costly and crippling contamination crisis.
To learn more, visit www.recycleacrossamerica.org.
Presenter - Alex Bunker 2021-03-31 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Sierra Donaven

Posted on Mar 31, 2021
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Our newest member was inducted on March 31st.  Sierra Donaven, a GP Farms resident and city council member, was a field agent in the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Explosives Division of The Justice Department.  Since retiring, she has become a Spiritual Practitioner in the Center of Spiritual Living in Colorado with an affiliation with The Urban Ministerial School in Detroit. Please welcome her
New Member - Sierra Donaven 2021-03-31 04:00:00Z 0

First Hybrid Meeting

Posted on Mar 31, 2021
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The Rotary Club of Grosse Pointe had their first official Hybrid Meeting on March 31st.  15 members attended in person at the Village Grille while another 25 joined through Zoom. The meeting as a huge success and we all look forward to more in person meetings in our future.
First Hybrid Meeting 2021-03-31 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Suzanne Klein

Posted on Mar 31, 2021
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Ted Everingham passed the Oil Can to Suzanne Klein as someone he has been meaning to thank, as she always says “yes” when asked to participate and played a lead role in transitioning our meetings to Wednesday evenings.
Oil Can - Suzanne Klein 2021-03-31 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Emerson and Runyon

Posted on Mar 24, 2021
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Our speakers on March 24th were Psychologist Sarah Emerson, & Psychotherapist Nicole Runyon.  Together they spoke to us about the Mental Health Impact of the Past 12 Months
Both Ms. Emerson and Ms. Runyon have seen an increase in therapy services for children and adults over the past year.  Social isolation, through fear and/or government mandate, has been of the major concerns and has led to conditions such as agoraphobia. It has also magnified the intensity and frequency of anxieties such as a fear of driving or becoming obsessive compulsive about germs. 
The isolation has led to increased challenges at home, either marital or between children and adults.  Parents can also be spread too thin, finding it convenient to put their children in front of electronic devices, leading to increased disconnection.  This lack of social interaction can cause mental health issues for children and teens and the therapists are preparing for a ripple effect on different age groups.
Feeling tremendous guilt is also impacting their patients.  They feel guilty for not being able to see parents in nursing homes or hospitals.  If a parent should pass away, the guilt is amplified by not being able to celebrate their life through a traditional funeral. 
Both therapists highly recommend checking in on one another.  This helps to lessen the feeling of loneliness and can also allow for those reaching out to see if someone is really suffering and possibly suicidal. 
Presenters - Emerson and Runyon 2021-03-24 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Ted Everingham

Posted on Mar 17, 2021
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Diane Strickler passed the Oil Can to Ted Everingham on March 17th for always being one of the first to volunteer for service projects and for championing a few of them himself.

Oil Can - Ted Everingham 2021-03-17 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Lori Ziolkowski

Posted on Mar 17, 2021
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Our presenter on March 17th was Lori Ziolkowski, the Regional Director of the Mid-Michigan Chapter of Families Against Narcotics (FAN).
There are two paths to addiction: (1) “Zero Entry Pool”, which can start with smoking, vaping, and then slowly escalates; and (2) “Cliff Dive”, where a person is given a prescription narcotic after an injury or surgery and then becomes addicted.    Since 1999, there have been over 450,000 opioid overdose deaths, with a 13% increase in 2020 over 2019.
FAN is helping to address substance abuse disorders through coaching, support, and education.  Coaching includes peer/family recovery where a person/family will provide assistance through their life experiences.  Support includes Hope Not Handcuffs that partners with police departments to find treatment centers for those requesting help and Comeback which provides post overdose wellness checks.  Education consists of Naloxone training and outreach to eliminate the stigma attached to those suffering from the disease.
Ms. Ziolkowski founded the Great Lakes Bay Region chapter of FAN after her daughter, whom she describes as athletic, beautiful, smart, and funny, became a heroin addict in high school.  She is now in her fifth year of recovery. 
As stated by a former Surgeon General – “addiction is a chronic disease and not a moral failing.”
Presenter - Lori Ziolkowski 2021-03-17 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jessica B. Marcetti

Posted on Mar 10, 2021
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Our presenter on March 10th was Jessica B. Marcetti, Manager of Volunteer Services at Vista Maria.
Vista Maria serves 1,200 children a year, over 450 per day, with 100 living on campus, offering residential treatment programs and on-campus charter schools.  Its mission is to foster restorative relationships and deliver innovative care, treatment, and education so that vulnerable youth believe in their worth, heal, and build the skills for success.  It serves primarily adolescent females who have been abused, neglected, abandoned, or involved in human trafficking.
What is human trafficking? It involves an action (inducing, recruiting, transporting) through a means (force, fraud, coercion) for commercial sex (sex trafficking) or labor/services (labor trafficking).  Sex trafficking can occur at massage parlors, through escort services, and at private parties, to name a few.  Examples of labor trafficking include domestic (nannies), and seasonal work at farms and hotels.
There were 364 human trafficking cases in Michigan in 2019, 40% involving the exploitation of a child, and nearly 300,000 U.S. children are at risk.  There are certain risk factors that make children vulnerable, a few examples include a history of abuse in the home, substance abuse, and frequent school changes where there is no tie to the community.
People can help fight human trafficking by recognizing possible indicators that it’s happening.  A few examples are a sudden disconnection from family and friends, dramatic change in behavior, and often accompanied by someone they defer to.  Be aware of the vulnerable people in your community and connect with them on an individual level.  If a situation seems unsafe, report it to the authorities.
To learn more about Vista Maria, go to: www.vistamaria.org.
Presenter - Jessica B. Marcetti 2021-03-10 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Diane Strickler

Posted on Mar 10, 2021
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Comparing the recipient to the big hitter on her youth softball team, Jackie Dale passed the Oil Can to Diane Strickler for always stepping up to the plate with service projects.

Oil Can - Diane Strickler 2021-03-10 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Nina Gazel

Posted on Mar 03, 2021
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On March 3rd Nina Gazel gave her "New Member Vocational Talk"
Nina and her husband, Caleb, live in GP Park with their dog, Odin, and grandmother, Marie Horak (who spoke to our club).  Nina is the VP of Business Strategy for Fusion Hill, a qualitative consumer research firm. Caleb, is a resident in emergency medicine at St. John Hospital.  They met at Carleton College in Minnesota.
Nina provided a power point presentation of her family history and titled it “A Mutt’s Tale”.  She has lived in many different parts of the country and has a very diverse family background.
On her mother’s side, her grandmother is German and grandfather Ukrainian, and they met in Germany before coming to the U.S.  Family values they passed along include: education above all else; exploring and experiencing life; and always share your table with others.
On her father’s side, her grandparents met in Brazil, where her father was born, and his brothers still live.  The family values coming from this side are: family above all else; love languages, quality time, and food; humor solves everything; and soccer and card game feuds are forever.
A constant through Nina’s life has been volunteering.  She has had many exchange student brothers and sisters growing up, has been involved with many charity events and is currently on the board of the Ted Mullen Fund.
Presenter - Nina Gazel 2021-03-03 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Jackie Dale

Posted on Mar 03, 2021
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Vince Van Tiem and Doris Neal-Van Tiem passed the Oil Can to Jackie Dale for the great job she is doing scheduling speakers as the Programs Chair.
Oil Can - Jackie Dale 2021-03-03 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Cindy Eggleton

Posted on Feb 24, 2021
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Our presenter on February 24th was Cindy Eggleton, the co-founder, and CEO of Brilliant Detroit.
Brilliant Detroit, created in 2015, is dedicated to building kid success families and neighborhoods where families with children 0-8 have what they need to be school ready, healthy, and stable.  It does this by providing proven programming and support year-round out of homes in high-need neighborhoods. How it operates -- the organization is invited into communities where it will rehab a home, typically purchased through Detroit’s Land Bank, and turn it into an early child and family learning center.  The idea is for each house to become a magical place with neighborhood input.
With 60% of Detroit children under age 5 living in poverty, the majority will not be ready for kindergarten.  In one centrally located welcoming place, with the help of over 80 partners bringing in their own programs, Brilliant Detroit can offer classes for parents (exercise or toward a GED, for example) while providing educational programs for the children.
Evidence-based programs around health, family support, and education are offered at each location, where neighbors come together for fellowship, activities, and learning.  Each individual community’s involvement is what makes it work.
There are currently 12 homes located throughout Detroit, with a goal of 24, to achieve what Ms. Eggleton believes will be a transformational difference.  A child’s zip code should not pre-determine their life/success. www.brilliantdetroit.org
Presenter - Cindy Eggleton 2021-02-24 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Mark Heppner

Posted on Feb 17, 2021
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Our presenter on the 17th was Mark Heppner, President and CEO of the Edsel & Eleanor Ford House.
Mr. Heppner is very excited about the improvements at the Ford House, which includes a 48,000 square foot visitor center.  The center will contain a museum store, education classrooms, a destination restaurant called The Continental, with 80 indoor seats and 40 outdoor, and a grab-and-go food/beverage counter called The Speedster.  There will also be event space with the Lakeshore Room able to seat 200 people.
There will be two exhibition galleries. One will be permanent with film, photos, and letters about the Ford family.  There will be a focus on Edsel Ford’s car designs and his impact on the auto industry.  The second will be rotating, featuring local and national traveling exhibits. 
The second new structure is a 17,000 square foot administration building.  These new offices allow the staff to be separate from visitor areas. 
The renovations focused on sustainability with the buildings generating more energy than they use.  Both have solar panels and basins to collect and clean rainwater and the restaurant tables are made from trees that have been cut down on the property.
Mr. Heppner’s hope is to attract many new visitors while still satisfying the regular ones.  He is confident of a Spring, 2021 re-opening.  To learn more, visit www.fordhouse.org.
Presenter - Mark Heppner 2021-02-17 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Doris and Vince

Posted on Feb 17, 2021
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Dick Allison passed the Oil Can to Doris Neal-Van Tiem and Vince Van Tiem for their work with the community affairs committee and for being very hands-on with our service projects.
Oil Can - Doris and Vince 2021-02-17 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Alister Chang

Posted on Feb 10, 2021
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Our presenter on February 10th was Alister Chang.  Alister spoke to us about Working to Advance Literacy. (With assists from Nancy Riker and Willian Dent from DC Rotary Club and Cindy Eggleton from Brilliant Detroit. Pictured below.).
Mr. Chang is a literacy educator, researcher, and advocate.  He is a member of the DC Rotary Club and is on the DC State Board of Education.
His presentation began with a video about Wash and Learn pop-up learning programs in Detroit laundromats. Through an organization called Libraries
Without Borders, laundromats partner with local libraries, where librarians supply books and computers, read to the children, and do arts and crafts.  Wash & Learn in Detroit - YouTube
Mr. Chang’s idea is to promote literacy in creative ways.  Books, teachers, and a curriculum are all necessary, but there also needs to be outreach and relevancy.  The programs must appeal to the children/parents, and it has to meet them where they are and when they are available.  It can’t just be structured times at the local library. 
The DC Club is fortunate to have a trust fund to fund their activities, one of which is the annual handing out of dictionaries to every third-grade student in Washington D.C.   They are hand deliver at the schools which allows the teachers to incorporate them into their lesson plans.  Often, this is the first book these children have ever received so they are very excited.
The most effective way to bring children to grade-level reading is through one-on-one tutoring.  The ideal situation is ½ hour sessions, 2-3 days a week.  The DC Club is looking to work with an organization called Reading Partners to match Club members with students.
Presenter - Alister Chang 2021-02-10 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Dick Allison

Posted on Feb 10, 2021
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Fred Ollison passed the Oil Can to Dick Allison for all of his work on the community service committee, finding hands-on projects that are safe to do in today’s environment.
Oil Can - Dick Allison 2021-02-10 05:00:00Z 0

New Member - Kevin Cox

Posted on Feb 03, 2021
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Welcome out newest member Kevin Cox.  For all of his hard work as the faculty sponsor for GP South’s Interact Club, Kevin has been inducted as a honorary member.  Congratulations!
New Member - Kevin Cox 2021-02-03 05:00:00Z 0

Member Presentation - Frank Wilberding

Posted on Feb 03, 2021
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Frank Wilberding is one of six children born and raised in Grosse Pointe.  He attended St. Paul and then Austin High School before going to Notre Dame.
In his 20s, Frank struggled with different jobs, including one where he repossessed phones for AT&T.  He eventually stumbled into a career in advertising, working at J. Walter Thompson and Ross Roy for 20 years.  He found success in media planning and buying. 
Frank is married to Beth Konrad and they have two daughters, whom they raised in Grosse Pointe for 15 years.  They moved to Chicago in 2001 where Frank would expand his media research business and Beth would teach at Loyola University.
In 2008, Frank went into recovery due to addiction problems, which led him down a different career path.  At age 62, he started the process to obtain a masters in social work from Loyola.  He then began working for the Hazelden Foundation, counseling people to deal with their addictions before addressing any underlying mental illness.
Frank eventually started his own private practice and moved back to Grosse Pointe 4 years ago.  He continues to work with grief and addiction counseling and is on the board of the Family Center.  Beth is on the GP Farms City Council.
Frank sprinkled in many funny anecdotes, including his time in the National Guard and his obsession with baseball, which involved “stalking” Dave Rozema and attending the Detroit Tigers Fantasy Camp at age 72.
Member Presentation - Frank Wilberding  2021-02-03 05:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Marie Horak & Adrien Carlier

Posted on Jan 27, 2021
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Our presenters on January 27th, Marie Horak and Adrien Carlier, spoke to us about surviving WWII and Working in the Belgium Underground
Marie Horak is the grandmother of Nina Gazel and Adrien Carlier is the stepdad of Jackie Dale.
Marie Horak
Ms. Horak remembers Jacob Levy coming over to her home in Germany because he always had candies and shoes for the children.  He would buy fertilizer from her family’s business.  The last time she saw him, she was told to never tell anyone he was at their home and learned much later that he was Jewish and that her father helped him escape to France.  The help her father provided was discovered and he lost his fertilizer business.
She also remembers at 14-year old polish girl who was taken in by neighbors and taught to speak German.  After the war, the girl came back to thank the community for their help.
Food was very scarce and rationed.  As the eldest child, she remembers going hungry as she prepared food for her younger brother.  She jokingly holds this against him to this day.
At one point during the war, her family was given 2 hours to pack and vacate their home.  It was difficult to know what to pack as they were put into trucks with no idea where they were going.  When they eventually settled, it was under extremely stressful living conditions.
Adrien Carlier
Mr. Carlier worked as slave labor in Germany as a 17-year-old.  Whenever the Red Cross visited the facility, the Germans would hide him because he was underage.  An injured German soldier working there befriended him and made sure the Red Cross found him at one of their visits.  This allowed him to return home to Belgium.  At the facility, he remembers that 282 Jews worked there at one point and then, one morning, they were gone.
His time in Germany destroyed his stomach lining.  A doctor’s successful treatment was to have him eat raw liver until he healed. 
He witnessed air combat where a plane was shot down.  He rode his bike to its location and transported the American pilot to safety on his bike. It was his understanding the pilot would work his way to Spain, and he hopes he made it.
One time, when the Germans were planning to enter Holland, he was able to cross the bridge to Holland to warn the people in the town of what was to come.  He succeeded in crossing due to his ability to speak German after watching two people get arrested.
These remembrances need to be shared so history is passed on and, hopefully, doesn’t repeat itself.
Presenters - Marie Horak & Adrien Carlier 2021-01-27 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Mil Hurley

Posted on Jan 20, 2021
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Mil Hurley, owner of A Southern Gardener, spoke to us about the Moross Greenway Project on Jan 20th.
The Moross Greenway Project is a non-profit working to re-landscape the seven median islands between Ascension St. John Hospital and the I-94 service drive.  It began in 2009 and, with six years of fundraising (goal of $600,000) and planning, ground was broken in 2015.
Enormous beds were created with 150 trees, 500 shrubs, and 10,000 perennials, that thrive in Michigan weather, being planted. Drip irrigation is being used until the plants mature and will then be removed.
There have been setbacks, such as the very wet winter that followed the initial planting. Plants were lost so the beds had to be raised to handle the drainage. 
There is a permanent art sculpture on one of the islands, but the rest of the artwork is rented by the organization and is rotated out.  All sculptures are for sale. 
To keep this beautification project going, many volunteers and donations are needed.  To maintain the islands, $40,000/year is required.  Volunteers help pick up trash twice a year and plant 500 daffodils every spring.  To volunteer, donate, or learn more about the organization and the art work, please visit www.morossgreenway.org.
Presenter - Mil Hurley 2021-01-20 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Sarah Warnez

Posted on Jan 13, 2021
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Sarah Warnez gave us a presentation on Jan. 13th about South Sudanese Leadership and Community Development (SSLCD) and her involvement.
Ms. Warnez is a 2011 graduate of GP North and is a Nurse Practitioner in Ann Arbor.  As part of her graduate work, she performed a study on men’s health in a Uganda refugee camp.  While there, she met the President of the SSLCD, which was formed in Grand Rapids in 2004.
Its mission is to promote the health and well-being of South Sudanese villagers through grass roots leadership development and community building in the Mungula and Olua refugee camps in Northern Uganda.  Over 60% of the over 2 million refugees are from South Sudan.
The SSLCD provides a stipend to three team members who live in the refugee camps with a mission to improve the lives of the refugees.  Through the team leaders, the non-profit has provided supplies for agricultural and livestock cooperatives, supplies and education for emergency birth preparedness, has encouraged trauma healing meetings, and provided solar power to charge phones and tablets for learning.  They also have formed men’s action groups to keep the men active as a way to keep them from drinking.
Their 3 pillars for 2021 include Women’s Empowerment, Peace Building, and Agriculture Development.  The women, who do most of the manual labor, are being provided with leadership training.  For agricultural development, the hope is to provide a grain mill so the refugees can grind their own grain and possibly earn money doing it for others.
To learn more, please visit www.hopeforsudan.com
Presenter - Sarah Warnez 2021-01-13 05:00:00Z 0

New Members - Paul Hulsey

Posted on Jan 13, 2021
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Please welcome one of our new members, Paul Hulsey. Paul lives in Grosse Pointe with his wife and children, is the CEO of H2O Energy, and is also the Commodore at Bayview.
New Members - Paul Hulsey 2021-01-13 05:00:00Z 0

New member - Art Getz

Posted on Jan 13, 2021
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Please welcome one of our newest members, Art Getz. Art, who lives in Grosse Pointe Farms with his wife, is the retired president of Detroit Oxygen and Medical Equipment.  He has been a lifelong advocate for Little League Baseball and is a supporter of Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Greektown.
New member - Art Getz 2021-01-13 05:00:00Z 0

George McMullen

Posted on Jan 10, 2021
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There were several nice articles about our friend George McMullen in last weeks Grosse Pointe News.  If you have not seem them yet you can find them here...
George McMullen 2021-01-10 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jenny Boettcher

Posted on Dec 16, 2020
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On December 16th our presenter was Jenny Boettcher, President of Grosse Pointe Chamber of Commerce.
Mrs. Boettcher started the presentation by expressing her frustration with the State’s constantly changing rules and shutdowns while offering businesses very little financial relief.  There are a couple of grants available through Wayne County and the State, but they are either relatively small or only available on a first come, first served basis.  Through its website, the Chamber provides Covid 19 resources to help businesses follow State guidelines.
Addressing the Covid 19 restrictions, shutdowns, and event cancellations, the Chamber has had to pivot with the times.  It is deferring membership renewal fees for up to 90 days, offering businesses free Covid signs and PPE kits and, on the website, they can post employment opportunities. The Chamber’s Legacy on the Lake event was changed to meal and wine dinner kits available for purchase, and there was a Santa Claus “drive-by” in lieu of the Santa Parade.
To help the community support local businesses, the Chamber’s website provides a list of restaurants and their contact information that offer carry-out or curbside service.  You can also purchase Chamber Bucks that are accepted at local retail stores, health & fitness locations, salons, and restaurants/bakeries.  To help with foot traffic, it has sponsored a gingerbread house contest at over 50 locations with a detailed map on its website.
Presenter - Jenny Boettcher 2020-12-16 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Fred Ollison

Posted on Dec 16, 2020
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On Dec 16th Phil MacKethan and Judy Masserang planned on giving the Oil Can to Fred Ollison to “grease” his joints after knee surgery.  Tuesday evening gave them another reason as Fred texted and e-mailed Phil the words “I can’t get in” and Phil knew immediately that Fred was trying to get into the Zoom meeting.  After informing him that he was a day early, Fred replied “oops”.
Oil Can - Fred Ollison 2020-12-16 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Roger Hull

Posted on Dec 09, 2020
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On December 9th our presenter was Roger Hull, the Rotary Club of Grosse Pointe's Foundation Board President.
The Foundation Board is made up of 9 directors, with three new ones elected each year as three term out.  It is responsible for the stewardship of the Foundation balance sheet and its assets.  Duties include creating an annual budget, approving or amending grant requests received from the Club Board, and disbursing the funds directly to the organization requesting them or remanding to the Club Board for further action. 
Revenue comes from special events, such as the McNeill Raffle, Cruise for a Cause, and, in the past, bi-annual auctions.  Money is also received through District 6400 grants, donations, gifts from estates, and gifts in memory of a Rotarian.
Funding categories include education (scholarships), community projects (Tot Lot, Crossroads), and international projects (polio).  Accounting and bank fees makes up the operating expenses.
To continue to support our projects (without being able to conduct fundraisers), a letter will be sent out to the membership asking for a donation to the Foundation that is “right for you”.  Donations can also be made on the Club’s website.
Presenter - Roger Hull 2020-12-09 05:00:00Z 0

Second Mile Center charity

Posted on Dec 05, 2020
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On December 5th, Safety vested Rotarians Judy Masserang and Diane Strickler teamed-up with members of Grosse Pointe Memorial Church to contribute to and run a food drive for the benefit of Second Mile Center charity.   Drive by donating Rotarians were Lisa Gandelot, Jackie Dale, Nina Gazel and Doris and Vince Van Tiem.  This picture was taken a few minutes after 10:00 am at the beginning of the event.  By the 11:00 a.m. closing two vehicles were filled.  GP Rotary is committed to future monthly food drives with GPMC, the next scheduled to happen Saturday, January 9 (not pictured: workers and contributors Mark Cory and Dick Allison).  JOIN IN NEXT MONTH TO FILL THREE VEHICLES!    
Second Mile Center charity 2020-12-05 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Marc Pasco

Posted on Dec 02, 2020
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On December 2nd we heard from Marc Pasco who is the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy Communications Director.
The Conservancy is dedicated to keeping the riverfront a beautiful, clean, and safe gathering place for all.  It is responsible for the establishment, improvement, operation, maintenance, security, programming, and expansion of the Detroit RiverWalk and associated green spaces.  The 5 ½ mile RiverWalk will ultimately run from MacArthur Park at Belle Isle to the Ambassador Bridge.
The east riverfront includes Gabriel Richard Park, Milliken State Park, Mt. Elliott Park, the Dequindre Cut, and the Robert C. Valade Park,  It also includes a boardwalk in front of the Stroh Rive Place and there are  discussions to have public space on the former Uniroyal property.
The west riverfront stretches from the Joe Louis Arena site to the Ambassador Bridge.  A boardwalk has been built over the water in front of the Riverfront Towers and there are ambitious plans when construction beings on the Ralph C. Wilson Centennial Park.  
Numerous events are held for the public every year, including a Fishing Fest, Touch-A-Truck, and River Days, to name a few. www.detroitriverfront.org.
Presenter - Marc Pasco 2020-12-02 05:00:00Z 0

New Member - Frank Wilberding

Posted on Dec 02, 2020
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Please welcome our newest member, Frank Wilberding.  Frank grew up in Grosse Pointe, worked in advertising in Chicago for most of his career, received his Masters in social work at age 62, and is now a self-employed therapist.  He lives with his wife, Beth Conrad, in GP Farms.

New Member - Frank Wilberding 2020-12-02 05:00:00Z 0

Rotarian in the News - Jessica Keyser

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The caption reads: Pure Grosse Pointe: Grosse Pointe Public Library Directory Jessica Keyser took advantage of the nice fall weather by, naturally, reading a book on the steps of the Central Branch library’s new entrance. The new outdoor space, funded by the Grosse Pointe Library Foundation, is handicap accessible (ramp is on the Fisher Road side) and has chairs, tables and Wi-Fi for anyone to sit and relax.
Rotarian in the News - Jessica Keyser 2020-11-19 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Ashley Holmer

Posted on Nov 18, 2020
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Our presenter on November 18th was Ashley Holmer, the Founder and Executive Director of the Red Sweater Project.
The school that Ms. Holmer, a former Grosse Pointe resident, helped create after going to Tanzania for the first time in 2005 is going strong.  There are 104 students, over 4 classes, and a staff of 17 (15 of which are local).  They also have 86 graduates who they raise funds for to assist in their continuing education.
Ms. Holmer played a video with the Director of English as a Second Language and the Operations Manager speaking.  The Director talked about the impact the school has on the students, focusing on one who has become much more confident and engaged.  The students are currently taking their exams that will place them in their areas of study and, for the older students, qualify them for their post-secondary education.  The Operations Manager takes care of the school and campus, helping with the garden and the rabbits.  Both are used to feed the students, with a goal of providing meals four times a week. Rabbits are raised because it only takes 10 weeks to go from birth to being ready for consumption.
A second video focused on the school and students.  The goal of the Red Sweater Project is to provide an affordable education no matter what challenges stand in the way, while also protecting the students and educators through every precaution, and ultimately creating a brighter future for every student.
A donation of $1,500 ($125/month) will pay all expenses for a child to attend school for a year.  To learn more or make a donation, of any amount, go to their website www.redsweaterproject.org.
Presenter - Ashley Holmer 2020-11-18 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Chad Livengood

Posted on Nov 11, 2020
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Our presenter on November 11th was Chad Livengood, Senior Editor at Crain’s Detroit Business.
Mr. Livengood has been with Crain’s for four years and writes about big business and public policy.  He told two very different stories that focused on inequities in both arenas.
In February, he interviewed Dan Gilbert, who, before his May 2019 stroke, was at the top of his game business-wise and politically,  building a high rise at the Hudson’s location and helping to revise Michigan’s auto insurance law.  The stroke brought him back to earth and the top of the line treatment he received gave him a new outlook about the healthcare industry and those who work in it. Mr. Livengood then told about his brother who was electrocuted in a freak accident, at age 20, while working for a family landscape company in 2004.  There was no worker’s compensation so he was passed around in the healthcare system, always requiring around the clock care, which he receives from those making $12.50/hour.  Mr. Livengood, who appreciates Dan Gilbert’s influence and all of the money he is willing to spend in, and for, Detroit, hopes he will do the same for the healthcare industry.
Mr. Livengood then talked about the poor state of Michigan roads and the funding to fix them.  The funding is based on a 1951 law that was passed before freeways were built and suburban sprawl existed.  It uses a formula that provides much more money per person to those in rural areas than urban areas and allocates money to roads like Mound the same as to two-lane rural roads.  He wonders why voters put up with it and believes we may have built a state that we can’t afford.   
Presenter - Chad Livengood 2020-11-11 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Judy Masserang and Philip MacKethan

Posted on Nov 11, 2020
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On November 11th, Murray Davis passed the Oil Can to Judy Masserang and Phil MacKethan to share for the work they do to keep us electronically informed via e-mails.
Oil Can - Judy Masserang and Philip MacKethan 2020-11-11 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Murray Davis

Posted on Nov 04, 2020
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Dino Valente passed the Oil Can to Murray Davis for being a “Rotary Runner”, delivering his Rotary cookie to him in St. Clair Shores.  Murray handled all the out-of-Grosse Pointe deliveries, driving over 120 miles total. 
Oil Can - Murray Davis 2020-11-04 05:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellow - Ted Everingham

Posted on Nov 04, 2020
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Steve McMillan, after providing an informative Paul Harris primer, awarded Ted Everingham his Paul Harris +8 pin, which recognizes Ted as having donated $9,000 to Rotary International over the years.  Ted noted that he reached this level through automatic payments.
Paul Harris Fellow - Ted Everingham 2020-11-04 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter Dan Carmody

Posted on Nov 04, 2020
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Our presenter on November 4th was Dan Carmody, President of the Eastern Market Corporation (EMC).
Eastern Market has been around for 129 years while Detroit has built around it, vanished for a bit, and is now building around it again. Made up of 5 buildings over 165,000 square feet, it is City owned with the EMC managing since 2006.  With an annual budget of over $5 million, the Market is governed by a 21 member Board made up of 1/3 municipal, 1/3 vendors & merchants, and 1/3 community. 
The EMC has three missions: (1) manage & promote the public market, (2) serve as the economic development organization for the Market District, and (3) leverage the Market to improve food access and the regional food economy.  Its purpose is to service the full spectrum of the area’s population.
A lot is going on at Eastern Market.  There are food wholesalers such as Wolverine Packing that produces 12 million hamburger patties a week to go along with the small farm and craft vendors on the weekends.  There are also programs to benefit smaller food production: (1) accelerating production with small garden plot innovation; and (2) incubation processors that nurture entrepreneurs in low cost kitchens.
Eastern Market’s location makes it attractive to developers, so the EMC tries to balance the welcoming of investment but still catering to small businesses and keeping it affordable.  The EMC is looking to expand and has purchased many neighboring vacant lots that will focus on its core value: shepherding Eastern Market’s rich history to nourish a healthier, wealthier, and happier Detroit.
Presenter Dan Carmody 2020-11-04 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Donald Campbell

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Our presenter on Oct. 28th was Donald Campbell. Mr. Campbell, a former Oakland County prosecutor, was a prosecutor/investigator for misconduct claims against attorneys and judges for the Michigan Supreme Court for ten years, and is now an adjunct professor at U of D Mercy Law School and defends attorneys and judges against such claims.
Mr. Campbell talked about his most unusual legal case, rather than talking about ethics and professional responsibility.  He figured with Covid “Zoom fatigue”, the Club would prefer this. The case occurred in 1990 when he was an Oakland County prosecutor, and it involved a bored group of boys/young adults wanting to form a gang and an unknown (at the time) unsolved mystery.  (To say it was unusual, would be an understatement).
Presenter - Donald Campbell 2020-10-28 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Joe LaVere

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On October 28th we inducted Joe LaVere as a new member.  Joe lives in GP Park with his wife, Karen, and two children.  He is a self-employed structural engineer. Welcome Joe!

New Member - Joe LaVere 2020-10-28 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Nina Gazel

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On October 28th we inducted Nina Gazel as a new member.  Nina lives in Grosse Pointe Park with her husband, Caleb, and is the VP of Business Strategy for Fusion Hill.  She noted that her parents met in 1980 when her mother was on a Rotary Fellowship in Brazil. Welcome Nina!
New Member - Nina Gazel 2020-10-28 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Shakira Lynn Hawkins

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Shakira Lynn Hawkins, a U of M and Detroit Mercy Law School graduate, is a criminal defense attorney who is running for Wayne County 3rd Circuit judge.  She has also served as Executive Director of My Sister’s Place, a domestic violence shelter.  Born and raised in Detroit, she lived in Grosse Pointe with her son for over a decade.
For the past decade, Ms. Hawkins has been a public defender.  She wants the court to be more of a reflection of the community by including civil rights and criminal defense attorney, rather than primarily consisting of former prosecutors. 
Ms. Hawkins believes the system is broken and that she has a responsibility to improve it by making it fairer.  Her goals on the court will be to reduce mass incarceration and to take advantage of alternative measures, such as mental health treatment and drug courts.  She also believes that cash bail reform needs to be implemented as most of the those incarcerated are the result of not being to pay bail.
To avoid becoming involved in the court system, Ms. Hawkins would like to establish a mentorship program for at-risk youth to provide education and community outreach.  To be productive citizens, they need to be provided with educational and employment goals.
Presenter - Shakira Lynn Hawkins 2020-10-21 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Dino Valente

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On October 21st, Roger Hull passed the Oil Can to Dino Valente for always keeping things “entertaining” during the 5:30PM to 6:00PM pre-meeting Zoom fellowship time.
Oil Can - Dino Valente 2020-10-21 04:00:00Z 0

Rotarians in the News

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The Grosse Pointe news report, "Group revisits, resuscitates overgrown block" in which several Grosse Pointe Rotarians are featured. Read the full article here.
Rotarians in the News 2020-10-15 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Heather Eckner

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Our speaker on October 14th was Heather Eckner, the Education Specialist at the Autism Alliance of Michigan.
The AAoM’s mission is to lead efforts to raise expectations and expand opportunities for people touched by autism across the lifespan.  Ms. Eckner believes her role is to be an advocate, which she defined as “positive disruption”.
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disability that affects the way an individual perceives the world, making communication and social interaction difficult.  ASD includes a wide range of symptoms, which can range from gifted to severely and are
typically recognized in the first three years of life.  There is no cure, but early recognition, evaluation, and evidence-based intervention can significantly reduce symptoms and improve development and learning.
Schools and the medical profession evaluate a triad of characteristics – communication, social, and restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior.  These three areas of focus can have numerous offshoot issues, such as irritability, intellectual disabilities, and hyperactivity. 
It wasn’t until 1975, with the passing of the Individual with Disabilities Act (IDEA), that access to public education for children with disabilities to help prepare them for further education, employment, and independent living became the law of the land.  The AAoM’s four pillars operate based on this Act – to navigate those touched by autism to create high education expectations, to maximize employment opportunities, and to drive initiatives to attain independent living.
With the diagnosis of autism becoming more prevalent nationwide (from 4.9% of students to 10.5 in a 10-year period), the work of the AAoM has become that much more important.  To learn more, visit www.AAoMI.org and you can contact an autism specialist by calling 1-877-463-AAOM or by e-mailing Navigator@aaomi.org.
Presenter - Heather Eckner 2020-10-14 04:00:00Z 0

Rotarians in the news

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Grosse Pointe News reports, "Rotary continues support of Northeast Integrated Health" Pictured are Lisa Gandelot, Jessica Keyser, Sherry McRill, Roger Hull, Rotary President Robert Lucas, Diane Strickler and Richard Allison.  Read the full article here.
Rotarians in the news 2020-10-08 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Michele Hodges and Richard Thomas

Posted on Oct 07, 2020
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Our presenters on the 7th were Michele Hodges, President of the Belle Isle Conservancy and Richard Thomas, of the Garden Club of Michigan.
Belle Isle consists of 982 acres.  broken down into three zones: (1) Formal. which includes the fountain and Aguarium; (2) Natural, which is made up of forest, meadows, and wildlife; and (3) Active, which includes the playground and beach.  Its historic  pedigree includes being used by the underground railroad on the way to Canada, having a speakeasy in the Aquarium during Prohibition, and this year’s Covid picture memorial. 
The island has a $300 million capital need and faces constant challenges, including the pandemic, the 4 million visitors, and flooding.  Ms. Hodges tries to operate the Conservancy using the 4-Way Test.
Planting of the Oudolf Garden Detroit began four weeks (after delays due to flooding).  The designer, Peter Oudolf, is a world renowned landscape designer who took on the project after a “love letter” from the Garden Club. 
The 2.5 acre garden has a main area, a rain area, and wetlands.  It’s made up of 15 beds, consisting of 26,000 plants.  The idea is for the garden to be beautiful in every season and for it to invoke an emotional response.
To learn more about the garden, go to www.oudolfgardendetroit.org
Presenters - Michele Hodges and Richard Thomas 2020-10-07 04:00:00Z 0

Rotarians at Life Remodeled

Posted on Oct 07, 2020
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Grosse Pointe Rotarians join Grosse Pointe Memorial Church to help Life Remodeled on October 7th. Judy Massering and Ted Everingham got our club involved in the project where the task was to clear brush and trash from one block of Quincy Road in Detroit, MI.
Pictured from left to right; Doris Neal-Van Tiem, Dick Allison, Ted Everingham, John Mozena, Holly Cory, Diane Strickler, Dave Colton, Mark Cory and Liz Vogel.
Rotarians at Life Remodeled 2020-10-07 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Rotary Exchange Students

Posted on Sep 30, 2020
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Our presenters Felix D’Haenens and Daiana Contini are former Rotary exchange students.

Daiana is from Cremona, Italy (home of the violin)  and attended GP South for the 2011-2012 school year.  She really enjoyed her film class as school in Italy didn’t offer those type of electives.  Daiana had two host families and has stayed in touch with one of them, spending Christmas together a few years ago.
Daiana attended university in Bologna, Italy, studying economics. Thinking she might go to college in the United States, she took the SAT, which she was able to use to get into the Italian university.  She has just completed her graduate studies in Copenhagen, Denmark, where she is currently living.
Her time with Rotary has taught her sense of community and to be open minded and open to exploring. 
Speaking from his home town, Mons, Belgium,  Felix attended GP South in 2012-13, having already graduated high school.  His favorite classes were photography and cooking. 
Felix is completing his studies in communications and works with group “social animation”, which for us, means motivational.  His goals have shifted as he is looking to become an English teacher at the high school or college level.  His love of the English language is what his time with Rotary provided him.
Our guests, John and Jack Mozena, spoke of the benefits of hosting an exchange student.  John found that both the host familes and the student learned a lot about each other, especially with the small cultural differences.  What would have been a very young Jack in 2012-13, he bonded with Felix over music and described him as “awesome”.
Presenters - Rotary Exchange Students 2020-09-30 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Ted Coutilish

Posted on Sep 23, 2020
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On September 23rd, Ted Coutilish presented the Club Survey Results.

48 members (56% of the Club) responded to the survey sent out by the communications committee. The questions were broken down into two categories: General Club and Club Communications.

General:  The results show that service activities are extremely important to the membership, as well as supporting service organizations and schools/education.  Other areas that received high marks are the Club’s leadership, the quality of the speakers, the length of our meetings, affordability, and community support.

The Club needs to focus on the diversity of our members and the visibility/awareness of our Club.  We need to attract younger, more diverse members and need to “toot our horn” more often.

Communications: A category that received high marks is the Club’s ability to keep members informed, with e-mail being the preferred notification vehicle.  Although, some believe the e-mail process can be streamlined somewhat.  The best ways to attract new members is to promote our service work, as well as emphasizing the friendships and networking opportunities that develop.  A large percentage also believe that the 4-Way Test is a great selling point.  The best ways for the Club to advertise are through social media and the local papers. 

The communication plan that is being prepared will focus on promoting and advertising the Club to improve/expand its image to attract younger, more diverse members.  The plan is two-thirds complete and it will be shared in the next few weeks.

Thank you to all who worked on preparing the survey questions and compiling the results/plan.

Presenter - Ted Coutilish 2020-09-23 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Roger Hull

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Mark Brooks passed the Oil Can to Roger Hull for his fundraising efforts on behalf of the tot lot, for agreeing to continue fundraising for the tot lot building, and for forming a Google group to communicate with the Club Foundation Board.
Oil Can - Roger Hull 2020-09-23 04:00:00Z 0

District Governor’s Golf Outing

Posted on Sep 21, 2020
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Ron Vitale, Susan Mozena, and Bob Lucas attended the District Governor’s Golf Outing. Pictured here with “Bob from Trenton Rotary.” The report is that they had fun, but did NOT win.
District Governor’s Golf Outing 2020-09-21 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Sherry McRill

Posted on Sep 16, 2020
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Our presenter on Sept. 16th was Sherry McRill, President/CEO of Northeast Integrated Health and a fellow Grosse Pointe Rotarian.

Originally, the Northeast Guidance Center, the NEIH was formed by the Junior League in 1963 as a children’s guidance center.  It now serves all ages and is committed to the health of children, adults, and families by providing innovative community-based services through behavioral and primary healthcare.

NEIH offers its services in Wayne and Macomb Counties.  Through its integrated healthcare with primary care physicians, the organization can support an individual’s total wellness.  In addition to physical and behavioral medical care, they offer housing (apartments at Mack & Ashland and townhouses on Manistique), assistance in finding employment, and liaison with hospitals.  Because many of their clients have lifetime illnesses, the NEIH will work with them the rest of their lives.  They also have a partnership with the police where they provide mental health instruction and conduct ride-alongs to help keep those with mental illnesses out of jail.

NEIH has 125 full and part-time staff.  With mental health budget cuts, the focus is on serving those with low income and severe emotional issues, many of the children suffering from trauma.  For both children and adults, psychiatric and psychological counseling is provided which can be in the home or at neutral sites.  For children, there are also classroom observations.

To learn more, please visit www.neguidance.org.

Presenter - Sherry McRill 2020-09-16 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Noel Jackson

Posted on Sep 09, 2020
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Noel Jackson, our Governor for District 6400 was our presenter on Sept. 9th.

A member of the Trenton Rotary Club since 2004, DG Noel served as its president in 2012-13.  He has been involved with numerous international projects, including travelling to India with Ron Vitale in 2010 to provide polio vaccines.

DG Noel began his presentation by thanking the amazing team that has helped him reach this point and continue to help him.  This includes 10 Assistant Governors, his mentor in the Trenton Club - Chuck Howey, and our own Kim Towar who has been in his corner, promoting him to become District Governor.

RI’s moto this year is Rotary Opens Opportunities while the District 6400 motto is Be A Hero - Human Engaging Rotary Opportunities.  DG Noel believes that engaging in these opportunities is what makes one a Rotarian, while also developing lifelong friendships.

A persona created by our District Governor a few years ago to support a literacy program is Captain Rotary.  He views the character as a metaphor for the superhero inside every Rotarian.  No superpowers, just a willingness to turn ideas into projects.

DG Noel is promoting a “peace chain” – a positive passive peace initiative to raise awareness of others to make their communities stronger, safer, and more stable.  Clubs are asked to nominate individuals to be a “link” and becomes friends of Rotary.

To open service opportunities for the Clubs, DG Noel has started the Rainbow Connection, which provides connections across the District.  Go to www.rotary6400.org and click on the Be a Hero link for the extensive list of the areas of service available. 

This year’s District Conference, to recognize and acknowledge all of the work being done by DG Noel and the individual clubs, will take place from May 6th – 9th, 2021 at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island.  Great speakers have already been lined up and 2022-23 RI President Nominee Jennifer Jones will be in attendance.  Spending a weekend on Mackinac Island would be a great way to show her your support.  Register at www.rotary6400.org.

Presenter - Noel Jackson 2020-09-09 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jerome Dinochau

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Our presenter on September 2nd was Jerome Dinochau, our 1985-86 Rotary exchange student from France.

One of Jerome’s host families was the Mozenas, who have stayed in contact with him over the years.  John and Susan attended Jerome’s wedding, and he was able to be here for their son’s wedding.

Jerome joined us via Zoom from Paris and Susan “interviewed” him.

Jerome noted that he had enjoyed all of the activities and sports during his year at GP South (which is much better than North 😊).  He had already graduated from high school before coming here and had passed the “baccalaureat” exam.  While here, he focused on classes to help him score well on the admissions exam to attend one of France’s “grands ecoles,” “L’Institut d’etudes politiques de Paris,”. “Sciences Po,” as the school is known in France, is generally thought to be the beginning step toward a career in public administration.

Jerome credited his time here among business-oriented Rotarians for his decision to go into the private sector and not the government.  Now 54, Jerome has worked for large companies, including the French railroad, where he managed the railroad’s real estate.  Since 2008, he has crafted a very successful entrepreneurial career in real estate in France, especially in and around Paris, working with brownfield properties around train stations and airports, and renovating properties in Parisian suburbs.

The Mozenas have hosted many exchange students.  Their son, John, reflected on how learning from his exchange brothers and sisters about other cultures was eye-opening.  Along with his parents, he highly recommends the hosting of exchange students, remarking that it had changed his family’s life.

Presenter - Jerome Dinochau 2020-09-02 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Mark Books

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Neil Sroka passed the Oil Can to Mark Brooks for his work on the Rotarpointe, keeping members informed when it’s difficult to attend meetings in our current format.
Oil Can - Mark Books 2020-09-02 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Sarah Jean

Posted on Aug 26, 2020

Sarah Jean spoke to us about Raising a Mixed Family during Racially Charged Times.

Sarah Jean (not providing her last name as she is protecting the anonymity of her adopted children) has 7 children, She and her husband, Joe, became foster parents in 2017 and have adopted 4 of the 5 they fostered (the fifth returning to their family).  All four are black and Sarah Jean and her family are white.

The tiring process of adopting foster children, although needed, has its ups and downs.  She noted many ways to support foster families, such as county “foster closets” that will accept donations of money, clothing, and toys to help offset the cost of taking in these children.  Also, donations of memberships to places like the Zoo or Greenfield Village and of your time (babysitting, lawn cutting) are greatly appreciated.

Her family are advocates of Black Lives Matter. She understands that all lives matter but believes that these words defeat the purpose of Black Lives Matter and that black lives need a little extra help at this time. 

Sarah Jean asks that we all take a moment to reflect on racial assumptions we make and to try to be anti-racist.  This would require getting to know someone of a different color and experiencing different cultures.  Only by doing this will the healing process begin.

Sarah Jean’s 12 year old son, Jeremiah, told the Club that he appreciates living with people who don’t look like him but that love and respect each other.

Presenter - Sarah Jean 2020-08-26 04:00:00Z 0

Mixed race family in Racially Charged Times

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We have a very special Zoom meeting this Wednesday 8.26.2020 profiling a one-of-a kind, beautiful, loving family.  Our meetings are open to the Public and we would love to have you join us.
Mixed race family in Racially Charged Times  Jackie Dale 2020-08-24 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Lauren Heinonen

Posted on Aug 19, 2020
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Our presenter on August 19th was Lauren Heinonen, the Director of Public Image for the Ann Arbor Rotary Club.  Her topic, How Rotary Can Attract Young People.
Lauren is 24 years old and joined the Ann Arbor Rotary Club in 2018. She has always been goal oriented – getting into a good college (U of M), writing her senior thesis and graduating, and obtaining a job in her area of study (biological anthropology). All of which she accomplished, but she still felt like something was missing. She knew she wanted to give back to the community by joining “something” that was already in place, could do work on a larger scale, and would last over a period of years. But what?
One day, while on Facebook, Lauren saw a Michigan congresswoman’s post about visiting Rotary clubs and it included the 4-Way Test. This led Lauren to attend an Ann Arbor Rotary meeting. At first, she was wasn’t sure if Rotary was right for her, with the older, not very diverse, membership and the meetings having a bell and singing. However, the members were very welcoming, ensuring her that the Club could use someone with her perspective and skill set. She could also see how passionate they were about their numerous service projects.
Lauren has greatly benefited from being a Rotarian. She was looking to give back to the community through service projects and has been able to do this but is also now being mentored and doing mentoring, networking, and developing leadership and public speaking skills. Most importantly, she is gaining friendships and is overall happy.
If Rotary Clubs would like to attract young members, they should ask “why?”. Is it to gain new perspectives? To increase diversity? To bring in new skills. If yes, change is necessary. For example, focusing less on business backgrounds and more on whether a person is willing to give back, having flexible attendance requirements, and possibly flexible dues (community service hours to lower the dollar amount). Also, a Club’s social media and website should appeal to young people, focusing on the environment and social justice, for example.
Finally, engagement is the key. Members cannot be too welcoming to visitors and potential new members at their meetings.
Presenter - Lauren Heinonen 2020-08-19 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Frank Sladen Scholarship winners

Posted on Aug 12, 2020
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On August 12th we recognized the 2020 Frank Sladen Scholarship winners.

Three scholarship winners from GP North and three from GP South.  Mark Weber, the committee chair, introduced each student and read snippets of their school counselor’s recommendations.  He bypassed the students’ accomplishments because they were too numerous to mention.

From GP North:

Clare Loch – described as dedicated to everything and helping to bring the community together, Clare will be attending Wayne State and would like a career in theatre.

Mariah Loper – described as selfless and a decision maker, Mariah will be attending Michigan State and would like a career in politics.

Emee Simpson – described as someone with volunteerism at her heart, she has taught dance to children with a range of disabilities (Emme was unable to attend).

From GP South:

Will Glasser – described as diligent and a champion for the underdog, Will will be attending Michigan.  He is unsure of his major but would like a career in the medical field.

John Blake – described as one who gives to the community, John is in a 4-5-year paid apprenticeship program to become a residential wireman with Union 51 in Warren.

Claire Sheeren – living with a sister with an illness, Claire has run two very successful fundraisers for Mott Hospital.  She will be attending Wheaton College, pursuing an applied mathematics degree with a minor in music.

Presenter - Frank Sladen Scholarship winners 2020-08-12 04:00:00Z 0
Tot Lot Reopening Pictures 2020-08-08 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Karen Kendrick-Hands

Posted on Aug 05, 2020
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Our presenter on August 5th was Karen Kendrick-Hands, the Co-Founder of the Environmental Sustainability Rotarian Action Group. (ESRAG).

Ms. Kendrick-Hands is a Madison, WI Rotarian but she and her husband raised their children in Grosse Pointe, both graduating from GP South.  Bringing her passion for Rotary and mitigating climate change together, she co-founded ESRAG in 2017.

Until recently, Rotary International had six areas of focus: Promoting peace, Fighting disease, Providing clean water, sanitation & hygiene, Saving mothers & children, Supporting Education, and Growing local economies. There is now a seventh: Supporting the environment.  Being an area of focus enables environmental service projects to receive global grants. It also brings Rotary’s seven areas of focus more in line with the United Nation’s 17 sustainable goals.

ESRAG assists Clubs, Districts, and RI in planning and implementing service projects, building awareness, building global and local support, inspiring action for sustainable solutions, and supporting RI in environmental initiatives.  The organization has 11 Green Themes, which include such service projects as organizing a clean-up, planting trees, and beating plastic pollution.  It also partners with groups such as Drawdown, the world’s leading resource for climate solutions, and Tradewater, whose goal is to reduce the world’s carbon footprint.



To learn more and/or become an ESRAG member (like Liz Vogel), please visit  www.esrag.org.
Presenter - Karen Kendrick-Hands 2020-08-05 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Neil Sroka

Posted on Aug 05, 2020
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Phil MacKethan gave it to Neil Sroka for simply saying “yes” when asked to take on the weekly task of sending out the pre-meeting e-mail speaker summaries.

Oil Can - Neil Sroka 2020-08-05 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Peggy Hayes

Posted on Jul 29, 2020
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Our presenter on July 29th was Peggy Hayes, the Executive Director of The Helm Life Center.

Ms. Hayes was born and raised in Grosse Pointe before her family moved to Rochester and is glad to be back.  Prior to joining The Helm, she had two 20-year management and marketing careers, one working with malls and the other with hospitals. 

The Helm started out 2020 with great expectations for its 40 programs and 700 members and then Covid 19 hit.  Considered an essential service, it has since had to adjust its programs.  For example, Meals on Wheels used to be hot meals 5 days a week and is now 5 frozen meals delivered one day a week and its lunch service, which typically served 15-20 people a day, switched to carry out only and now serves 50-55 a day. It has never stopped offering its connection to 2,480 services, such has home health care. 

The Helm’s building closed on March 13th and only opened back up on a limited basis, on July 20th.  During this time, the organization continued its bus program taking individuals to doctor visits and has started a program to handle grocery shopping and pharmacy pick-up.  It has taught a “how to Zoom” class and will try to deliver programs online, if unable to at its location.  Trying to slowly bring the services back to normal, there are now light exercise programs being offered and it has held a “party on the patio” and an ice cream social.

Mark your calendars for The Helm’s gala auction (which raises 40% of its revenue) on October 8th.  It will be an online event so attendees can make their bids from their living rooms.  To learn more about the organization  and see all of the great programs offered, go to www.helmlife.org.

Presenter - Peggy Hayes 2020-07-29 04:00:00Z 0

Lunch Bunch Goes On

The Lunch Bunch continues to meet every Friday.  They get take out from Irish Coffee and then meet at the near by dog park for some out door dining.  Watch for the weekly email invite and join the fun.
Lunch Bunch Goes On 2020-07-25 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - David Herrington and Sara Dobbyn

Posted on Jul 22, 2020
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Our presenters were Sara Dobbyn, Trainer/Intern Coordinator of Turning Point and David Herrington, whose daughter was a victim of domestic violence.

Ms. Dobbyn has been with Turning Point for 14 years and her duties include overseeing the survivor speaker bureau.  She noted that the services (some through Zoom) and shelters continue to operate during the pandemic. 

Mr. Herrington described his daughter, Lara, as your classic overachiever,  She was the president of NHS and choir in high school, became a lawyer and was an Air Force Jag for 5 years, became a partner at her Lapeer, MI law firm in one year, and was president of the Lapeer County Bar Association and Lapeer’s historical society.  He was proud to have her as a daughter.

Lara was married while in the Air Force and had three children between the years 2001 and 2006.  Mr. Herrington didn’t notice any marital problems until 2008, when he noticed how belittling and controlling her husband could be.

The husband was arrested in 2010 for physically trying to take the phone out of Lara’s hand.  He was ordered to attend AA, anger management, and get rid of any guns.  He barely attended any meetings and did not turn in any guns.

On December 6, 2011, an argument resulted in Lara and her son locking themselves in a room.  The husband grabbed a shotgun and shot the door open, hitting Lara and the son.  He then took Lara outside, killing her and turning the gun on himself. 

Mr. Herrington and his wife took in their three grandchildren at ages 10, 8, and 5 and is proud to report that all are doing well today at 18, 16, and 14.  He believes that his faith has helped tremendously in raising these children and it upsets him greatly that his daughter is not able to see them grow up. 

Ms. Dobbyn noted that the batterer in a domestic violence situation is controlling and not angry.  If you think someone might be a victim, look for signs of isolation, looking scared when together, and constantly being put down.  To learn more about Turning Point, please go to www.turningpointmacomb.org.

Presenters - David Herrington and Sara Dobbyn 2020-07-22 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Philip MacKethan

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Ted Coutilish passed it to Phil MacKethan for all of the great work he is doing with the communications committee and for being the #1 tech person and the #2 euchre player in the Club.
Oil Can - Philip MacKethan 2020-07-22 04:00:00Z 0

Red Badge Vocational Talk - Ted Coutilish

Posted on Jul 15, 2020
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After having just been awarded the Oil Can we got to enjoy Ted Coutilish's Red Badge Vocational Talk.

Ted first thanked all who have supported him as a new Rotarian – Ted Everingham, Mike Carmody, Mark Weber, Judy Masserang, and Phil MacKethan.

Ted was born in Detroit and has lived most of his life in Grosse Pointe.  Growing up, he wanted to be Oscar Madison (the sports reporting part, not the messy part) and was able to make that happen.  First, as a sports reporter for the GP North newspaper, and then as career.  He has been able to interview many sports stars, including Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson.

Seeing the JOA being implemented with the Detroit newspapers in the late 1980s, Ted decided to leave journalism.  Subsequently, he has been the communications director for U of D Mercy, Oakland U, Wayne State, EMU, and Oakland Community College.

Ted’s life took a drastic turn when his son was diagnosed with Fragile X syndrome.  This is a genetic disease that has left him non-verbal with many health issues.  As a result, Ted has given up all of his hobbies and has since devoted all of his time working with his son and those with special needs.

He has been (and is) on the boards of organizations such as the Fragile X Association and Fraxa and has been the communications director for both.  He has written 38 feature stories on Fragile X researchers who are looking for cures or treatments to scale back the disease’s impact. 

Ted is the Executive Director (and communications director – a constant with whatever role he takes on) for The Full Circle Foundation.  www.fullcirclefdn.org.

Red Badge Vocational Talk - Ted Coutilish 2020-07-15 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Ted Coutilish

Posted on Jul 15, 2020
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Bill Scott, holding a Kendall Oil bottle as a prop, presented the oil can to Ted Coutilish for taking a leadership role and being a very active new Rotarian.
Oil Can - Ted Coutilish 2020-07-15 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Jaime Turnbull and Roger Hull

Posted on Jul 08, 2020
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Our presenters, Jaime Turnbull and Roger Hull, gave us a sneak peek at the plans for The Schaap Center, Grosse Pointe Park.
Roger began with a brief background on Paul Schaap.  A Wayne State professor, he holds numerous patents, which has allowed him to become a philanthropist.  He helped the DIA secure its art during Detroit’s bankruptcy and has been extremely generous for the arts.  For the Schaap Center, he has donated $10 million, will fund operating expeneses of $500,000/year for the first five years, and has a $5 million matching challenge toward an endowment.  The Manoogians have donated $5 million toward the overall $25 million goal.
The Paul and Carol Schaap Center for the Performing Arts and Richard and Jane Manoogian Art Gallery began as a concept in 2012, moved on to parcel purchases, with planning commission approval set for this August.  The plan is to have the grand opening in the fall of 2022.
The Schaap Center will be a state-of-the-art arts center dedicated to stimulating high-quality performing and visual arts experiences.  There will be a 400-seat theatre, high tech audio and lighting, an orchestra pit (with a  overlift), and world-class acoustics.  The Grosse Pointe  Theatre and the Grosse Pointe Symphony will be program partners, with GP Theatre using 26 weeks a year. 
The Center will be governed by the Urban Renewal Initiative Foundation and the Grosse Pointe Park Council for the Arts.
Presenters - Jaime Turnbull and Roger Hull 2020-07-08 04:00:00Z 0

Tot Lot Grand Opening

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SATURDAY AUGUST 8, 2020 - 12:00 NOON
Rotary Tot Lot Re-Imagined 2020
Please join us for the
Grand Opening – Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
COVID Precautions
Kindly wear a mask, 6 ft. social distancing will apply
And hand sanitizer will be available.
Chairman - Mike Carmody
Co-Chairman/President Bob Lucas
Co-Chairman Peter Stroh
Tot Lot Grand Opening 2020-07-05 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Dr. Naimah Wade

Posted on Jun 17, 2020
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Our speaker on June 17th was Dr. Naimah Wade with 826Michigan.
826Michigan imagines a future where all students readily access their personal creativity through writing and confidently stand in the power of their stories. With beginners, it can be as simple as making them comfortable with letting their ideas out. This is accomplished with the help of adult volunteers. 
It’s goal is to assist 5-18 year olds with their writing skills through one-on-one attention with the belief that strong writing skills are fundamental to future success.  Volunteers are provided with focused training and are then able to assist students through the writer’s club writing series, workshops, field trips through a virtual learning lab, and weebots for young (age 5-10) learners. During the school year, there are also weekly tutoring sessions.
826 began in San Fransisco in 2002 and there are now 9 chapters around
the country, with locations in Ann Arbor and Detroit.  Dr. Wade joined the non-profit 2 years ago.
826 Michigan is comprised of 2 full-time staff members, 3 part-time, 2 Americorp members, 7 interns, and 500 volunteers (mostly college students) and has served 3,265 students.   Its annual budget is $920,000, with money coming from grants, individual donations, and from their retail store.  Each 826 location has a whimsical retail theme, with Michigan’s being robots.
Presenter - Dr. Naimah Wade 2020-06-17 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Scott Tagliareni

Posted on Jun 10, 2020
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Our presenter on June 10th was Scott Tagliareni with New York Life.  He spoke to use about Finance: the new normal.
Mr. Tagliareni has been in the financial services industry for 18 years and has been with NY Life since 2005.  He believes in a client-centric approach to investing.
When facing the challenges in today’s environment, he focuses on four areas of planning – protection, retirement, investment, and estate.  With life expectancy increasing, the fear of running out of money is a real concern.  The idea is to balance spending more in the early part of retirement with making sure you have enough to last the rest of your life.
An area of anxiety when making sure your money lasts is rising healthcare costs and the increasing costs of nursing homes and retirement communities.  Another is the “sequence of returns risk” where retirees experience large negative returns on their investments early in retirement.  This combination of the order of returns on investment with the timing of regular withdrawals can have a dramatic impact on how long your money will last.
Mr. Taliareni focused on three withdrawal strategies: (1) systematic – taking out a set annual amount over one’s lifetime; (2) bucket – putting a set amount in a bucket to spend over the first three years of retirement with another bucket replacing that one with a steady income; (3) flooring – having a set amount that will last your lifetime, coming from social security, pensions, and annuities.
Presenter - Scott Tagliareni 2020-06-10 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Johann Finkelmeier

Posted on Jun 03, 2020
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Our very own Johann Finkelmeier was our presenter on June 3rd.  Johann spoke to us about his extensive experience with gliders and the Sailplane Soaring.
Johann began flying in 1987 and has since taken 1,768 sailplane flights.  He uses an engine to get airborne, along with a tow from a lead plane, and the engine disappears into the fuselage once the cable is released.  He enjoys giving rides and has taken many passengers on these flights. 
A sailplane can have a 60-foot wingspan, which is bigger than a 737, and is made of carbon fiber.  Johann’s longest time in the air is 6 hours, a trip of 160 miles out and back.  He noted that it takes much more skill as a pilot to fly one these planes compared to your typical airplane.
Johann is proud of the flight he made with two other gliders from Colorado to Michigan to teach children to fly in the Young Eagles Program through the Tuskegee Airmen Glider Club.  The Club is based at Detroit City Airport and is still going strong after 17 years!  The flight took 3-4 days with many stops.  He was also was the sailplane instructor for the oldest living Tuskegee airmen. 
Even with every landing being an “emergency” landing due to the lack of an engine, gliding has the safest track record in the flying world.  As Johann noted, not all of his landings have been great but they have all been successful.
Presenter - Johann Finkelmeier 2020-06-03 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jackie Gleason

Posted on May 27, 2020
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Our presenter on May 27th was our “Red Badger” Jackie Gleason.  This is where new members get to share with the club a little about themselves and that they do for a living.
Jackie’s talk focused on how much she is enjoying being in Rotary, even if a quarter of her time has been virtual meetings.  She noted the humor of the roving reporters, the in-house speakers, such as Scott Matthews, Murray Davis, and Liz Vogel.  Her first time at our Club was to see Anna Gleason, our outbound exchange student to Finland, give a presentation. 
Jackie has been very involved, attending Cruise for a Cause, the Progressive Dinner, the GPYC holiday dinner, and is an active euchre player.  Her community service projects included gathering coats at Northeast Integrated Health and manning the phones at the MI Humane Society telethon.
All of these events have led to the development of new friendships, which she greatly appreciates. She is already looking out 20 years and hopes the Club continues to bring in committed Rotarians.  
Jackie shared pictures of  her wedding announcement, the family she is marrying into, and the prepping of her new condo.  Her wedding, originally scheduled for April, is now set for June 27th
Prompted by a question, Jackie mentioned that she is a Financial Services Professional for the New York Life Insurance Company.  She used to be a teacher and believes her current profession is a calling. If  interested in learning more, she has  a brochure available.
Presenter - Jackie Gleason 2020-05-27 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Rotary Vets

Posted on May 27, 2020
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In honor of Memorial Day, Phil MacKethan passed it to 6 members who served in the military – Dick Allison, Mike Carmody, Murray Davis, Bob Lucas, Bill Scott, and Mark Zmyslowski -- and is leaving it up to them to pick one to pass it on.
Oil Can - Rotary Vets 2020-05-27 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Katie Dotson

Posted on May 20, 2020
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Our speaker on May 20th was Katie Dotson, our Outbound Exchange Student in Denmark.
Katie has been in Denmark since August 2019 and will be returning to GP in July 2020.  Due to the Coronavirus, her classes went online on 3/12 and it resulted in the cancellation of all of her spring travel plans.  The one bright spot is that she was able to spend a lot more time with her third host family (who has 4 daughters) and really bonded with them.
She was able to share pictures of a few of her local trips, such as to Copenhagen, which included other Rotary exchange students.  There are 120 students in Denmark, with 26 from the United States.
One of her highlights was receiving a private tour of the Novo Nordisk plant, which is the world’s largest maker of insulin pumps.  As someone with Type 1 diabetes, this greatly interested her. 
Katie believes she has become much more responsible and independent as a result of her exchange.  She is very grateful that Rotary didn’t make her come home, and leaving it up to the local Clubs and the host family. 
Presenter - Katie Dotson 2020-05-20 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Philip MacKethan

Posted on May 13, 2020
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Julie Baumer passed it to Phil MacKethan for all of his work putting together our online meetings.
(despite the slight technical difficulties today). 😊
Oil Can - Philip MacKethan 2020-05-13 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Gerald Hasspacher

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Our speaker on May 13th was Gerald Hasspacher, co-chair of the Sierra Club of Southeast Michigan
Mr. Hasspacher described the stark reality of climate change and how greenhouse gases can exponentially reach a level that will impact our ability to grow food.  These exponential loops include worldwide forest fires, the warming of the ocean, snow melting in the arctic, and the accumulation of calcium carbonate on the ocean floor.
Warnings indicate that there needs to be a 40% worldwide reduction of emissions by 2030.  Ironically, Covid 19, causing the shutting down of factories and keeping people in their homes, has momentarily created a trend toward that goal. 
Mr. Hasspacher offered a litany of ways to help reduce the emission of greenhouse gases, both large and small.  On the larger end, this includes installing wind turbines, purchasing electric cars, and putting solar panels on our homes.  On the smaller end, this includes not using fertilizer, replacing your grass with native plants, and not using waxed dental floss. 
Our speaker’s hope is that those in charge will treat climate change as seriously as they have Covid 19.
Presenter - Gerald Hasspacher 2020-05-13 04:00:00Z 0

Speakers - Lena & Bettina Gaechter

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Our speakers on May 6th were Bettina & Lena Gaechter from Switzerland. They spoke to us about how they and their country are dealing with Covid 19.
Bettina and Lena are sisters living in Siblingen and Schaufhausen, Switzerland.  Their father, Hans Peter, is a life-long best friend of Johann Finkelmeier.  Bettina, age 26, is in veterinary school and Lena, age 24, works in multi-media production and will be pursuing a masters in business administration.
Bettina describes herself as an introvert so self-quarantining has not had a huge social impact, except she is now spending a lot more time with her 6 roommates. She has filled her time by gardening, painting, and doing craft work.  Unfortunately, it did cause the cancellation of her practical veterinary training.  After 5 years of technical, she was looking forward to working with animals. 
Lena is working from home, which is a newer concept in Switzerland.  She believes that the routine she has established – coffee, work, exercise, lunch, work, socialize – has made the transition to staying at home easier. 
Both feel that their age group, and the country as a whole, has taken the stay at home orders seriously.  They are not fans of Sweden’s decision to take a herd mentality approach.
Bettina and Lena are very proud of their country for doing their part and following the rules.  One of the silver linings that Bettina has noticed is how silent her world is when she steps outside.  She finds it very calming to hear the sporadic conversation and see nature blooming.  Both are optimistic that we will all get through this and will adapt to our “new normal”
The country is set to open shops and schools in the next week.
Speakers - Lena & Bettina Gaechter 2020-05-10 04:00:00Z 0

Virtual Presenter - Laurie Smolenski

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Our speaker on April 29th was Laurie Smolenski, the Outreach and Development Officer at the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP).
A former Grosse Pointer, Laurie’s Rotary background is extensive, as her parents hosted 17 exchange students and she was an exchange student herself.  She has since received a Master of Arts in Peace and Conflict Resolution from the University of Queensland in Australia as a Rotary Peace Fellow and a Master of Arts in International Relations from the Autonomous University of Madrid in Spain as a Rotary Global Grant recipient.
The IEP is a global think tank that uses data to better understand and communicate the drivers of peace. Laurie is responsible for managing IEP’s partnership with Rotary International, disseminating IEP’s research through diverse public channels, and supporting IEP’s educational programming.
The IEP’s Global Peace Index is an annual measuring tool at the global and national levels. The index allows it to assess the social, political, and economic factors that create peace. The IEP also produces the Positive Peace Report that studies the factors – attitudes (social views), institutions (governments), and structures (equal distribution of resources) -- that sustain peace.
Analyzing these factors, there are 8 pillars: a well-functioning government, equal distribution of resources, the free flow of information, good relations with neighbors, high levels of human capital, acceptance of the rights of others, low levels of corruption, and a sound business environment.  The IEP is partnering with Rotary to be proactive in bringing balance to these pillars. In doing so, they are training “activators”, both young and old, to help bring peace to communities.  The goal is to train 150 people, in 6 regions, to initiate 1,000 projects by 2024.
For a deep dive into the numbers, go to www.economicsandpeace.org.
Virtual Presenter - Laurie Smolenski 2020-04-29 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Julie Baumer

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At the April 29th meeting John Minnis praised George McMullen’s courage and dignity, as evidenced in his cancer battle presentation and then passed the oil can to Julie Baumer for her “strength” in caring for George.

Oil Can - Julie Baumer 2020-04-29 04:00:00Z 0

Pix from last week.

Just a few more pictures from last weeks meeting. Including our roving reporter John Mozena and visiting Past President John Maliszewski.
Pix from last week. 2020-04-26 04:00:00Z 0

Virtual Meeting Speaker - Grosse Pointe South Interact Club

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Our speakers this week were the officers of the Grosse Pointe South Interact Club.
Unfortunately, the State’s cancelling of the school year has limited the Club’s community service, but they were able to have several well attended projects.  This included, on behalf of The Helm, raking leaves for seniors and writing notes to be included in Meals-On-Wheels meals.   It also partnered with the National Honor Society at Gleaners Food Bank and had a great turnout preparing bag lunches for Lunches of Love.
President Enya was happy with the volunteer projects the Club was able to complete and with the turnout.  The leadership is encouraging the writing of letters of support to health care workers and to seniors.  They also thanked Kevin Cox, George McMullen, Julie Baumer, and Scott Matthews for their support.  
George McMullen presented three $1,000 Interact scholarships to Elliott Gunnell (who was president last year and graduated early to study in Sweden – which has been delayed), Laine Johnson, and Enya Nguyen.  They all thanked the Club. 
Finally, George ended the presentation by nominating Kevin Cox to be faculty-advisor for life.  It was unanimously approved without discussion.
Virtual Meeting Speaker - Grosse Pointe South Interact Club 2020-04-22 04:00:00Z 0

Virtual Meeting Speaker - George McMullen

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George McMullen was our "Virtual" presenter on April 15th.  He gave a very thoughtful and insightful speech on his experience with battling cancer.  Rather than paraphrasing it we thought it best to share it word for word.  Please keep in mind, he wrote this to be spoken and not to be read.
"Twist and turns of life, 6 weeks ago I thought I was a healthy individual looking back there were some clues of my I’ll health but chose not to see the warning signs  then the twist a diagnosis of Pancreatic and Liver Cancer. As I reflect on my first thoughts coming to mind there were many questions and not very positive ones that went through my head but came down to two that would be difficult to answer Why Me…How long do I have to live…. but I thought to myself If I can answer these questions in a way that will give me peace it will give me the ability to direct all my energy to fully fight this largest challenge of my life
So where to go for answers I have relied on may sources from professional to on line to family and friends my thoughts of previous experiences but most of all prayer and my relationship with “I’AM” 
Question one “Why me” cancer is part of life and individuals get cancer why did God pick me with 7 billion people in the world I started by looking up in the bible a quote I have heard more than a few times 1 Corinthians 10:13 teaches “God won’t give you more than you can handle.”
It occurred to me how well I was suited and blessed by God with the tools to handle this challenge better than other individuals who have had to fight and or now fighting  this life threating disease.
A few of the many advantages that I have in this battle include financial independence I don’t have to report to work and live in a community that has literally 5 world class medical facilities within 40 miles of my home and 3 within in 5 miles, and treatment 1 Mile from my home. A country where Medical systems are making almost daily great strides in cancer treatment. My residence is a standalone home not a crowded apartment complex and in a crowded city that could expose me to additional disease. A family and good friend and partner that have the means to devote full time to my care..a winning and competitive spirit that I have used my whole life to run marathons compete in business and make the decisions that until recently keep me in great health.
Further As devastating as this is for my family and my Guardian Angel Julie I never added to my family no children have to live through this.
Also I have Lived almost 63 years… many individuals including many from my graduating class at GP South didn’t make it to even 50, I was not killed in Iraq at 20. I have enjoyed a life of privilege of good health I lived longer than my father even thought of I have lived to see my entire life transformed 13 years ago from a couch potato to a community activist, and supporter that lead to the best day of my life occurring in in my 60th year. And with God’s blessing I have lived every day as a gift I have had an exceptional life with no complaints and feel very blessed.
But most of all I’m blessed to live in a community that while difficult to be in at times the Old your business is my business when a person needs help they go beyond and above the call of duty to support help and assist in any way A wonderful community that takes care of our own and I certainly have been a big recipient that love, support and prayers. And my friends /Family at Rotary are a big part of that and I thank you your truly make a difference.
How long do I have to live?  
When first given the diagnosis my Dr. shared with me the statistics and averages as reported were 12-18 Months he was quick to say “on average” there was silence and racing through my head were thoughts that I was facing my premature Death and opened up some scary but additional quiet thoughts in a dark corner of my head not meaning to be dramatic but when talking to friends about the summer when working on the 2020 RYLA in November or even this Easter quiet questions of will I be here is this my last. But just as quickly the silence was over and the Dr. continued He said people beat the odds all the time and why not you George so move forward with a no expiration date and attitude of attacking the challenge and overcoming it…. This is part of the advice I base my battle on and have accepted 
That conversation pointed me in the direction to find reasons not to have an expiration date and increase my thought process to being positive and empowering and inspirational not only to me but to the members of team George and community.
Ask for reasons and you shall receive I truly believe God sent me some information to help in my challenge as about this time I heard the very inspirational message by Mr. Alex Trebek a message of inspiration hope Love and survival and keeping a positive outlook. He also had a message of obligation and almost a contract with his team supporters friends and medical professionals who have put so much work into his treatment for the last year…He said  if I did not do everything possible and with all available tools to fight this battle to stay alive, it would be a disservice and almost an insult to their efforts. This massage added to my battle plan along with no expiration date that I carry with me daily.. I make that contract will all my supporter’s I will not dishonor or insult you by giving up and I promise to give it my best effort every day. And if I may I interject a personal note my thoughts and prayers are with Mr. Trebek and his family for a full recovery
Another thought that came to mind a speech I heard 25 years ago By Mr. Terry Anderson who was a journalist and held hostage in the Middle East for over 6 years…upon being taken his captors said this is nothing personal. The speech he said two things “let it go don’t hold resentment” and you’re capable of more than you think you are… why I thought of these words and the timing of Mr Trebek’s speech came to my attention at this very interesting time in my life I don’t know perhaps that leads to my next and most important source to find answers and inspiration from I’AM
I connected my faith and looked for answers Calling the I’AM when in trouble and had done so before when I went clean and sober almost 22 years ago. I think it was the Movie Oh God with George Burns representing God he said and I paraphrase “I don’t hear from my children much except when there in trouble and then my phone starts ringing off the Hook” I have to admit prayer and me have been in and out over the last few years depending on when I needed help…so finding the number of the man upstairs took some time. Finally I found it in a shoe box in the back of the closet near a pile of old shoes…I jest to much but even though prayer was not one of my daily routines even weekly I had never lost my faith 
Through prayer and my attendance the last few years in church I remembered a some words in one of the gospels that has been with me over the years that came to mind and had heard several times before   “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that everyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life” the most powerful and inspirational message that has sent me in this direction of positivity in my battle.
We have the questionsm do we have the answers?
Why me perhaps a better question why Not me who is better prepared to handle this challenge that God has given me not only the tools but the He has also given me the blessed opportunity to be inspirational to be positive to challenge myself I said one time last year if I can pull RYLA in the short time frame I was given I can do anything”. Each person is different but the tools and advantages I have been blessed allow me the peace that God Pick me as I’m the best suited to fight this challenge  
How long do I have? … the answer forever if I stay in this world  I will continue to be positive and contributing to my friends and community and I have the unique opportunity to lead by example that there is no challenge that can be met head on in a positive manor…if I move on the too the next stage of eternal life  I take great comfort (and to be frank excitement has crossed my mind) that I will be together again with those who have gone before of particular note including George R McMullen as we have not crossed paths in 55 years.
God has sent me to a place of peace that I’m in his hands that he alone will decide where my life will go in this world or the next. This allows me to devote full time to staying here as long as possible and take great comfort in all the help I’m receiving from Team George,  community members and the medical professionals in that my time here is not over at least…. not yet.
Virtual Meeting Speaker - George McMullen 2020-04-15 04:00:00Z 0

Virtual Meeting Speaker - Jennifer Jones

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Rotary Club of Grosse Pointe held it's second virtual meeting and and we had 45 people in attendance. Unfortunately due to GoToMeetings limit on the number of simultaneous streaming videos, only 25 faces were visible at a time. Our speaker was Jennifer Jones.  Jennifer is a member of the Windsor-Roseland Club, was the Rotary International vice president in 2016-17, and is a 2019-2023 Trustee of the RI Foundation.
Jennifer sees Rotary as a silver lining in these times with clubs, like ours, being flexible and connecting online.  Her RI world has become a series of Zoom meetings.
This past month, RI has scrambled to help by diverting $1 million to its disaster relief fund with $25,000 grants available to any District  fighting Covid 19.  Numerous clubs immediately responded and the first 40 had the money in their hands within 4-5 days.  Another influx of money will be added to this fund in the next few days.
Jennifer responded to questions:
Polio: RI is still working hard to eradicate the disease and was strongly working with governments and even the Taliban. Unfortunately, there is now a 6-month moratorium on delivering vaccines.  There is good news -- the RI medical infrastructure that is already in place is now switching its focus to the coronavirus.  RI is still working closely with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with Jennifer co-chairing a campaign to raise $50 million a year over the next three years.
RI Foundation: It’s even more important to donate as every dollar given today is used three years from now.  The money being diverted to the coronavirus fight needs to be replenished.
Female leadership: RI is on the cusp of having a female president.  Next year, there will be 6 women on the board of trustees.
New members: It’s very important that they do something meaningful and it’s up to the Club to ask what new members would like to do and then deliver.
Interact: Rotary Clubs should include their Interact Clubs in a meaningful way.  Find young leaders and them make them better leaders.   
The meeting came to an end as Jennifer was going out on her front porch at 7:00 PM to bang pots and shout out in support of health care workers, like her doctor husband Nick Krayacich.
Virtual Meeting Speaker - Jennifer Jones 2020-04-08 04:00:00Z 0

GP Rotary's first Virtual Meeting

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The Rotary Club of Grosse Pointe had it's first Virtual Meeting on April 1st.  We had over 30 participants joining via video and/or phone.  We ran the meeting as close to normal as possible and had Susan Mozena as our presenter.  
Susan shared her thoughts as a Minister and Hospital Chaplain. She started by reading an article she has written for the GP News’ Pastor’s Corner that will appear in next week’s edition.  She compared the current war against the Corona Virus to the Battle of Iwo Jima in WWII.  Although entirely different in terms of taking an active versus a passive role in the fight, both are similar in developing a sense of community and that a terrible price will have to paid (according to the models) before victory. 
Susan went on to say that in order to save our community, and to achieve victory in the biggest fight of our lives, is to avoid our community.  You can show your love for your neighbors as well as for all health care providers by staying home.
GP Rotary's first Virtual Meeting 2020-04-01 04:00:00Z 0

Rotary Youth Exchange

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Rotary Youth Exchange helps build world peace one young person at a time. Students learn a new language, discover another culture, and truly become global citizens. Exchanges for students ages 15-19 are sponsored by Rotary Clubs in more than 100 countries. These young people develop lifelong leadership skills and build lasting friendships with other young people from around the world.
The Rotary Club of Grosse Pointe is excited to be able to host Gabriela from Poland. Her nick name is Gabi and she just turned 17 this past January. Gabi is due to arrive in Grosse Pointe in August and will be living with one of three host families for the next 10 months while attending Grosse Pointe South High School.
Anyone is interested in learning more about our Youth Exchange Program for both in-bound as well as out-bound students may contact: Bill Scott at 313-886-6919 or williamscott55@gmail.com
Rotary Youth Exchange 2020-03-16 04:00:00Z 0

Euchre Night In March

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Another great night for Euchre.  The competition was tough but Philip MacKethan prevailed and took home the trophy, a green glittery bow tie and a new hat for St. Patty's day.
Euchre Night In March 2020-03-11 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Richard Yeager-Stiver

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Our very own Richard Yeager-Stiver told us his story about... A lone cold road in Scotland.
Richard’s story began on a lone cold road in Scotland while on a religious pilgrimage.  He had pre-purchased trip packages and carried only credit cards while travelling by buses and ferries, which became a problem when he found out a key bus fare could only be purchased by cash.  This led to him coming across a character who sent him running around to various places in unsuccessful attempts to obtain cash with his credit cards.  Missing the last bus to Fionnphort, his next destination, Richard was forced to hitchhike. 
This part of his travels introduced him to a man name Frasier and his dog Moses.  Frasier took him on a series of unusual excursions, akin to kidnapping, all while commenting that hitchhiking was very dangerous and that people have gone missing.  He refused to let Richard leave his vehicle until they reached his cottage for an overnight stay with the plan being to catch a ferry the next day. 
At the cottage, Richard met Frasier’s wife, Hillary, who was suffering from Multiple Sclerosis and had completely given up on God.  Upon learning of Richard’s profession, she opened up, talking to the next morning, and almost caused him to miss yet another departure. His entire experience and ordeals worked to reveal God not only to him but especially to a woman in need of spiritual guidance.  As everything worked out, Richard believed he was blessed and can only describe his travels as a “Blessed Kidnapping”.
Presenter - Richard Yeager-Stiver 2020-03-11 04:00:00Z 0
Rotarian in the News - McMullen 2020-03-08 05:00:00Z 0
GP Rotary in the News 2020-03-07 05:00:00Z 0

Presentation - The 2020 census

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On March 4th, Regan Stolarski, GP Chamber of Commerce Director of Admiration and Liz Vogel, Clinton Township Deputy Supervisor gave an educational presentation on The 2020 census.
The census is important for three reasons: (1) it determines the number of seats the State has in Congress; (2) it determines the allocation of government money; and (3) it is mandated by the U.S. Constitution.
Ms. Stolarski noted that the 2010 census brought in $1,800 annually per person in the State of Michigan over the past 10 years.  The Grosse Pointes, surprisingly, didn’t have a near 100% participation rate, which means not all of the available government funds were allocated to our area.  These funds are used for  services such as Hospice care and to provide federal student loans and Pell Grants. 
For this year’s census, a postcard will be mailed out to each household explaining how to complete the form online.  If not completed in a reasonable amount of time, reminder postcards will follow.  After that, the actual form will be mailed out and, finally, a census taker will knock on each individual’s door. 
Liz is trying to use every available dollar to promote the census.  In addition to determining how government funds are allocated, the data gathered is used by businesses when deciding whether to open a location in a particular city.
Both of our speakers’ roles are to reach out to the public to eliminate some of the hurdles, such as distrust in the government, by explaining what it means to their community, and possibly their family, to accurately fill out the form.  They are also reaching out to stakeholders - business owners and civic leaders - to promote the importance of completing the census.
Presentation - The 2020 census 2020-03-04 05:00:00Z 0
Rotary Foundation - Paul Harris Fellow 2020-03-04 05:00:00Z 0
Rotary Foundation - Paul Harris Fellow 2020-03-04 05:00:00Z 0

George McMullen

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At the meeting on March 4th, George McMullen was in attendance and a group picture was taken before he starts his cancer battle on March 5th.  Our thoughts and prayers are with George as he starts his treatment process.
George McMullen 2020-03-04 05:00:00Z 0

GPRotary in the News

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Great Promo Ad for the Grosse Pointe Rotary Tot Lot Re-Imagined. Volunteers can sign up here. www.gptotlot.com
GPRotary in the News 2020-02-27 05:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Mike Carmody and Philip MacKethan

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On February 26th, Mike Carmody and Phil MacKethan presented the details for the Tot Lot Installation and showed us how to sign up and volunteer.
The plan for the Tot Lot is to close it now for the removal/moving of the existing playground equipment, install the new equipment from May 7th to May 13th, and have a grand opening on June 1st.  This is all dependent on the weather so keep your fingers crossed.
To make it happen, 368 volunteers are needed, and a website has been formed to facilitate signing up.  www.gptotlot.com.  Promoting the website, there will be GP News articles, e-mails sent to thousands of businesses, notices sent out by the GP Chamber, and every Rotarian will receive a packet with postcards and business cards to distribute.
The jobs that need to be filled are:
  • Moving the playground equipment.  (heavy lifting so reaching out to GPS and GPN students).
  • Drilling and footing install
  • Assembly of the playground Equipment.
  • Hospitality A (waivers, t-shirts, parking passes)
  • Hospitality B (beverage and food distribution)
  • Daily site clean-up
  • Security
All of the jobs and their durations are explained on the website.  Please become familiar with  www.gptotlot.com to be able to explain it to potential volunteers.  As Mike stated, there are only 94 days to make this happen and they are the most important three months in our Club’s history.  Be sure to do your part.
Presenters - Mike Carmody and Philip MacKethan 2020-02-26 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - John Minnis

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On February 26th, Peter Stroh passed the Oil Can to John Minnis for the tremendous public relations support he provided for Tot Lot Reimagined through the Grosse Pointe News and Grosse Pointe magazine.
Oil Can - John Minnis 2020-02-26 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - John Chmabers

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Our presenter on Feb. 19th was John Chambers, our very own District 6400 Governor.
DG Chambers promoted the upcoming District Conference that takes place at the Kalahari Resort in Sandusky, Ohio from May 15th to May 17th.  The guest speaker is former NASA astronaut Mike Foreman who has twice travelled to the International Space Station.
The Conference will be filled with Rotary talks about a mission trip to Ghana, a very emotional polio eradication presentation, and a clean water initiative in Haiti called “Hanwash”.  District 6400 Clubs will also talk about the projects they have been doing in our community.   
In addition to Rotary, there will be daily activities, a Space Camp for kids, and great fellowship and nightly hospitality.  It’s a great way to meet and mingle with like-minded individuals. 
Mike Carmody and Kim Towar spoke in support of attending the conference as a great way to learn about our District and Rotary International’s message.  The presentations in support of this message help transition the attendee from simply being a member of a Rotary Club to becoming a Rotarian, energizing one’s commitment to “service above self”.
To learn more about the District Conference and to register, go to www.rotary6400.org.
Presenter - John Chmabers 2020-02-19 05:00:00Z 0

Euchre Night

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Feb. 12th was a grand night for Euchre.  Three full tables and Bill Roche's maiden voyage as the new organizer.   Bill did a great job, we all had fun and Jim Fikany was able to tear the trophy from the hands of  last month's winner, Dave Colton.  Thanks again to Liz Vogel for starting this new Grosse Pointe Rotary tradition. 
Euchre Night 2020-02-12 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Murray Davis

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On Feb. 12th our presenter was our very own Murray Davis.  Murray is the Project Director/Program Coordinator for the 19th District Court Veterans Treatment Court in Dearborn.
Veterans Treatment Courts (VTCs) are a diversion program for veterans who have been charged with a non-violent misdemeanor.  It takes the person out of the court system with the goal being treatment, not incarceration.  They promote sobriety, recovery, and stability through a coordinated response with the VA and other healthcare networks.  There are 27 VTCs in Michigan.  To learn more, go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PrpytvX3YSE.
If a defendant identifies as a veteran, the prosecutor can recommend this program.  The individual would plead guilty to the offense and then undergo a four phase 12-18-month probationary period with strict guidelines.  During this time period, he/she, through the VA, would be assessed and receive psychological, emotional, and substance abuse treatment.   Murray’s VTC receives state and federal funding but he looks for extra money to help veterans with emergency needs and transportation and to incentivize volunteer veteran mentors through training and mileage reimbursement.
Presenter - Murray Davis 2020-02-12 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Karen & Nick Straffon

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On Feb. 5th our presenters were Karen & Nick Straffon, Gold Star Family Monument Committee Chairs.
Mr. and Mrs. Straffon began their efforts to honor veterans by participating in Wreaths Across America.  On December 16th of last year, 3,500 wreaths were placed at Resurrection Cemetery in Clinton Township.
They are now in the process of raising the $75,000 that will be needed for the Southeastern Michigan Gold Star Monument to be installed on the Clinton Township’s Civic Center Campus on Romeo
Plank. The Monument’s purpose is to honor, recognize, and serve the Gold Star Families and the ultimate legacy of their Loved Ones who have paid the ultimate sacrifice.
Donations will flow through the Herschel Woody Williams Medal of Honor Foundation.  The Foundation’s goal is to have these memorials in communities around the country.  There are currently 60 installed with many more in the works.  www.hwwmohf.org.
Donations can be made at www.hwwmohf.org/monuments/clinton-township-mi or by mailing a check, payable to HWWMOHF, to 5007 Pte Tremble, Algonac, MI 48001, with “Clinton Township” on the note line.
Wayne Pascoe talked about the Tour of Honor.  The tour is a self-directed motorcycle ride to memorials around the country that also raises funds for charity, including the Gold Star Family Memorial Foundation.  www.tourofhonor.com.
Presenter - Karen & Nick Straffon 2020-02-05 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Peter Stroh

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On Feb. 5th, Dick Allison passed the Oil Can to Peter Stroh for his work facilitating the transfer of the tot lot playground equipment into storage at the Stroh River Place.   The work may have been a little more strenuous than anticipated as Dick talked of having “visions” while doing the heavy lifting.
Oil Can - Peter Stroh 2020-02-05 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Tim Killeen

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Our speaker on Jan. 29th was Tim Killeen, the Wayne County Commissioner.
Mr. Killeen has been the Commissioner for District 1 since 2007.  He provided an update on a few of the major projects he is working on as well as some of the day-to-day activities.
The major projects include: (1) his work with the Mental Health Authority which serve over 70,000 residents with mental disorders.  He believes it operates most efficiently as a non-profit and is fighting to keep it that way.  (2) The Lakeshore seawall is in serious need of repair and talks are progressing to obtain the 8-13 million in federal money that will be needed. 
On a more daily basis, he is working on a Jefferson Ave. crosswalk for students who will have to cross that street in the fall.  There will be road resurfacing on Lakeshore and Mack this summer and he’s working with a Mack Improvement Plan for Cadieux to Alter.  As a member of the auditing committee, he is a firm believer that sweating the small stuff helps save money.
Presenter - Tim Killeen 2020-01-29 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

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At the January 29th meeting, Diane Strickler passed the oil can to Dick Allison for stepping up as a co-chair of the community affairs committee to help with the 18 service projects the Club participated in last year.
Oil Can 2020-01-29 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Ty Hinton

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Ty Hinton, Economic and Community Development Director of Harper Woods, was our presenter on Wednesday 1/22/19.
Since last talking to our Club four years ago, Mr. Hinton’s department formed a community task force that meets at the Neighborhood Economic Development Center on Kelly Rd.  This group has put together a Neighborhood Improvement Plan that prioritized
areas of concern and offered recommendations to both the City’s administration and its citizens to help better the City.
Their biggest area of concern is Eastland Mall.  It needs new ownership that is willing invest in the property.  The location is 67 acres with the potential to be a health care campus or a tech park. 
Mr. Hinton is optimistic about many areas of the City.  Crime on Kelly Rd has been drastically reduced so the neighborhood is turning around.  The old Circuit City building is now a state-of-the-art facility being used by the Harper Woods School District to teach printing, culinary arts, and the performing arts.   The Poupard School location offers a great development opportunity for assisted living or single-family homes.
The vitality of Harper Woods, especially Eastland, is integral to the entire area.  Mr. Hinton is looking for more GP involvement, both personally and financially.
Presenter - Ty Hinton 2020-01-22 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

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On Wednesday 1/22/20 Julie Baumer passed it to Diane Strickler for all of her hard work as co-chair of the community affairs committee -- a position she will hold “for life”.  (Despite Diane’s protests, the membership was in agreement).
Oil Can 2020-01-22 05:00:00Z 0

New Member - Ted Coutilish

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On Wednesday 1/22/20 Mike Carmody inducted Ted Coutilish.  Ted is the Executive Director of the Full Circle Foundation and he and his wife Marybeth live with their 19-year-old son in GP Shores.  Please welcome him to the Club and help him become involved.
New Member - Ted Coutilish 2020-01-22 05:00:00Z 0
Rotary In The News 2020-01-16 05:00:00Z 0

Euchre Night

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On January 15th we had a great turnout for Rotary Euchre Night.  With 12 player we had three tables going for three rounds.  David "The Shark" Colton took home the trophy while the rest enjoyed their season related consolation prizes. Bill Roche has stepped up to take over organizing future Euchre game and was therefore quite attentive to the subtle details of the event. Many thanks to Liz Vogel for launching this great new GP Rotary tradition.  
Euchre Night 2020-01-15 05:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellows

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Paul Harris Pins were presented to Ted Everingham (PHx7) and Mark Brooks (PHx6).  Kudos to both for their continued donations.
Paul Harris Fellows 2020-01-15 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jeff Furest

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Jeff Furest is the President Nominee of the Mt. Clemens Rotary Club and came to regale us with their plans for their next big fund raiser.
The Mt. Clemens Club is celebrating its 100th anniversary and has given out over $3 million dollars in grants and funding over that time.  For the occasion, the Club is putting together an ambitious event to both celebrate this and to raise $100,000 for the community.
The black-tie Gala takes place on June 5th at Villa Penna in Sterling Heights.  In addition to great food, entertainment, and atmosphere, there will also be a 50/50 raffle with $17,500 in prize money and an incredible live auction.  The auction items are (1) a golf outing for three with LPGA legend Nancy Lopez (who will be attending as the Honorary Foundation Chair) at her private club in Florida; (2) a cycling excursion in Scottsdale, Arizona with nine-time Tour de France competitor, Frankie Andreu; and (3) a ten-day vacation for six at a Marriott resort in Kauai, Hawaii.  A private jet trip for ten to the Jack Daniels Distillery in Tennessee has already been gobbled up.
Individual tickets can be purchased for the Gala and VIP tables and sponsorships are also available.  To learn more about the event and to watch a teaser trailer, please visit www.mcrgala.com. (Pictured Judy Masserang, Steve & Beth Pryor and Jeff Furest)
Presenter - Jeff Furest 2020-01-15 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Ruth Azar

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Ruth Azar is the Founder & Director of The Second Mile Center of Detroit. She also happens to be the spouse of one of our newest members, Scott Matthews.
Ms. Azar says a calling from God led her to open the Center in 2007, which serves over 200 children, ages 3 to 19.  On a daily/weekly basis, the Center offers after-school programs, a summer camp, provides donated free clothing, furniture, and baby goods, holds a Monday Night Community Dinner, and runs a computer lab.    It also brings in a no-cost annual mobile health fair and takes the children on field trips to expand their horizons. Mixed in all of this is ministry work, spreading the word of God.
The Center operates on a very tight budget of $150,000 plus $100,000 in-kind services.  Even with these limited resources, it is able to offer the programs listed above and also prepared 10,000 meals in 2019. 
Ms. Azar believes the children want to belong to something and the Center offers them an alternative to gangs.  Her goal is to teach the children who they are, that they have value, and that they are valued. To learn more, volunteer, or donate, visit www.secondmilecenter.org.
Presenter - Ruth Azar 2020-01-08 05:00:00Z 0

Grunyons Sing

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As we draw closer to the holidays we once again invited the Grunyons to sing for our club to help get us all on the Christmas Spirit.
Grunyons Sing 2019-12-18 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

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On December 18th, Scott Matthews passed the Oil Can to Julie Baumer for her work with the Interact Club and with RYLA. 
Oil Can 2019-12-18 05:00:00Z 0

Tot Lot News

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Members of the Grosse Pointe Rotary Club got their hands dirty on Saturday, December 14 as they unloaded a semi-trailer loaded with playground equipment destined for installation at the "Re-Imagined" Rotary Tot Lot at St. Clair and Waterloo.  The new equipment will be kept safe and dry through the winter and, with cooperation from Mother Nature, will be installed and ready for play by June, 2020.
Tot Lot News 2019-12-14 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Kathryn Woodstock

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Kathryn Woodstock is the Methodist Children’s Home Society’s (MCHS) Chief Development Officer.
The MCHS was formed in 1917 to take care of children without parents (either orphaned or parents were away from home fighting/supporting WWI).  With an 80-acre campus in Redford, the MCHS is home to 50 boys between the ages of 5 and 18.  Most have bounced from home to home and have suffered multiple traumas, which can include sexual, physical, and/or just what comes from the lack of food and necessities due to poverty. 
With a $10 million budget, provided primarily by the State, the mission of the extremely passionate staff of 140 is to advocate for the boys.  They do this by providing therapeutic services, teaching health and wellness life skills, and offering educational services to help the children catch up to their grade level.  A major initiative for 2020 is to open a “trauma based” charter school, the first in Michigan.
The ultimate goal is for each boy to live with a family, whether biological or foster.  The MCHS offers support and guidance to these families after the child is in their homes. To learn more about this organization, please visit www.mchsmi.org.
Presenter - Kathryn Woodstock 2019-12-11 05:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellow

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Congratulations to Diane Strickler who was presented with her Paul Harris (x8) pin.  Diane directed her donation to polio eradication as her mother suffered from the disease.   
Paul Harris Fellow 2019-12-11 05:00:00Z 0
Rotary In the News 2019-12-05 05:00:00Z 0