Presenter - Rufus McGaugh

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

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 To learn more about the Network, please visit
Presenter - Mallory Bower with the MHPN Fiona Lacroix 2021-11-10 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter and New Member - Michael Newman

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

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

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
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

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

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

“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

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
Presenter - Chip Rhode Fiona Lacroix 2021-09-23 04:00:00Z 0

Fun, Food, and Fellowship

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

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
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

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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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.
Rotarians in the News 2021-07-08 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Detroit Abloom

Posted on Jun 23, 2021
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.
Presenters - Detroit Abloom 2021-06-23 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Michael Newman

Posted on Jun 23, 2021
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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,
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
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
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
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
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
Presenter - Todd Scott 2021-04-21 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Mark Weber

Posted on Apr 21, 2021
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
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
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
Presenter - Chris Lambert 2021-04-07 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Alex Bunker

Posted on Mar 31, 2021
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
Presenter - Alex Bunker 2021-03-31 04:00:00Z 0

New Member - Sierra Donaven

Posted on Mar 31, 2021
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
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
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
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

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
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
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:
Presenter - Jessica B. Marcetti 2021-03-10 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Diane Strickler

Posted on Mar 10, 2021

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
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
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
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.
Presenter - Cindy Eggleton 2021-02-24 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Mark Heppner

Posted on Feb 17, 2021
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
Presenter - Mark Heppner 2021-02-17 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Doris and Vince

Posted on Feb 17, 2021
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
Presenter - Mil Hurley 2021-01-20 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Sarah Warnez

Posted on Jan 13, 2021
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
Presenter - Sarah Warnez 2021-01-13 05:00:00Z 0

New Members - Paul Hulsey

Posted on Jan 13, 2021
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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.
Presenter - Marc Pasco 2020-12-02 05:00:00Z 0

New Member - Frank Wilberding

Posted on Dec 02, 2020

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

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
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
Presenter - Ashley Holmer 2020-11-18 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Chad Livengood

Posted on Nov 11, 2020
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
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
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
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
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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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 and you can contact an autism specialist by calling 1-877-463-AAOM or by e-mailing
Presenter - Heather Eckner 2020-10-14 04:00:00Z 0

Rotarians in the news

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
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
Presenters - Michele Hodges and Richard Thomas 2020-10-07 04:00:00Z 0

Rotarians at Life Remodeled

Posted on Oct 07, 2020
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
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

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

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
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

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

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

Presenter - Noel Jackson

Posted on Sep 09, 2020

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 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

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

Presenter - Jerome Dinochau


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

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

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
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

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

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
Presenter - Karen Kendrick-Hands 2020-08-05 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Neil Sroka

Posted on Aug 05, 2020

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

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

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

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

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

Oil Can - Philip MacKethan

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

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.

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

Oil Can - Ted Coutilish

Posted on Jul 15, 2020
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
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

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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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

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

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

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
Virtual Presenter - Laurie Smolenski 2020-04-29 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Julie Baumer

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

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

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

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

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

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
Rotary Youth Exchange 2020-03-16 04:00:00Z 0

Euchre Night In March

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

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

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

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

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

Presenters - Mike Carmody and Philip MacKethan

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.  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 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

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

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
Presenter - John Chmabers 2020-02-19 05:00:00Z 0

Euchre Night

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

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
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

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.
Donations can be made at 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.
Presenter - Karen & Nick Straffon 2020-02-05 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can - Peter Stroh

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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 (Pictured Judy Masserang, Steve & Beth Pryor and Jeff Furest)
Presenter - Jeff Furest 2020-01-15 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Ruth Azar

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
Presenter - Ruth Azar 2020-01-08 05:00:00Z 0

Grunyons Sing

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

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

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

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
Presenter - Kathryn Woodstock 2019-12-11 05:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellow

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

Presenter - Todd Scott

Our presenter on Dec 4th was Todd Scott, the 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, blue ways, 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.
Mr. Scott talked about bike lanes around the city (Jefferson, Bagley, and Livernois), the building of RiverWalk, the Dequindre Cut, a westside cut called the May Creek Greenway, the possibility of turning I-375 into a boulevard, and the ambitious 32-mile Joe Louis Greenway.  The Coalition even helped to make sure there is a bike/walk lane on the Gordie Howe Bridge.  To learn more, please visit
Presenter - Todd Scott 2019-12-04 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Lisa Gandelot passed it to Scott Matthews for becoming an active member so quickly and helping to market the Club through videos and testimonials to be posted on the website.   
Oil Can 2019-12-04 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Jackie Gleason passed the Oil Can to Lisa Gandelot for her work on the progressive dinner and her successful tot lot grant writing. 
Oil Can 2019-11-20 05:00:00Z 0

2019 Vocational Service Award

George McMullen presented the 2019 Vocational Service Award to the Full Circle Foundation, a unique Grosse Pointe organization that assists those with special needs from ages 18-26 (and beyond).  Representing Full Circle were Ted Coutilish, Sue Banner, Mary Fodell, Carl Kratz, and Mark Weber.
2019 Vocational Service Award 2019-11-20 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Madeline Bialecki

Our presenter on November 20th was Madeline Bialecki.  Madeline is the Director of the Gilda’s Club Lake House location in St. Clair Shores.
The Lake House became a part of Gilda’s Club in April 2019 but still continues its same mission -- to provide support, education and wellness activities for those impacted by cancer.  As part of Gilda’s Club, the location has better financial and organizational access.
Through our speaker and Pam Stanley, a cancer survivor and volunteer, we learned about the importance of love, hugs, and support for all dealing with cancer.  508 people were served last year. 
Visit to learn more and to view the St. Clair Shores location’s calendar.
Presenter - Madeline Bialecki 2019-11-20 05:00:00Z 0

Euchre Night

We had a big group this time.  Four tables.  Doris Neal-Van Tiem was the grand winner.
Euchre Night 2019-11-13 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Dino Valente passed it to Jackie Gleason for participating in Club volunteer projects and being a progressive dinner host before becoming a member.  She is obviously the fastest recipient. 
Oil Can 2019-11-13 05:00:00Z 0

New Member Induction

Jackie Gleason was inducted as a new member to GP Rotary on November 13th.  Jackie lives in Grosse Pointe Woods and is a financial specialist with New York Life.  She has shown her commitment to service before even becoming a member and the Club looks forward to her involvement going forward.  A reminder that Jackie’s daughter, Anna, was an outbound exchange student to Finland.  Welcome aboard Jackie!!
New Member Induction 2019-11-13 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Scott Matthews

Our presenter on November 13th was our very own Scott Matthews. Scott gave us his Vocational Talk.
Scott was born in Grosse Pointe but raised in Birmingham.  He attended Cranbrook, Lawrence University (WI), received an MBA at U of M and worked towards a PhD at Tufts.  He has worked in Massachusetts, New York, and Florida before coming back to Michigan in 1985. 
His business, Matthews Software, is a tier 1 software supplier to Ford Motor and has built the company’s website for after-market parts
Scott has also started an employee owned company called MetroAlive that combines custom local business profiles with comprehensive city profiles to offer a virtual hub where one can find an interactive directory of local businesses, the latest deals, and upcoming events in the area. It works with 5,000 businesses in 40+ cities over 3 states and is a one-stop guide for those looking for “where to go and what to do”.
As a big proponent of local business, Scott believes in “out of the box” thinking with coordinated events between businesses, the idea of making shopping “entertainment”, and thinking regionally by bring residents of other cities to our community to shop and dine.
Presenter - Scott Matthews 2019-11-13 05:00:00Z 0

Rotarian in the News

City of Dearborn recognizes employees who are veterans.  Click here to read the article which includes our very own Murray Davis.
Rotarian in the News 2019-11-08 05:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Mark Brooks passed the Oil Can to Dino Valente for turning our check-in table into an art form with his chocolate displays.
Oil Can 2019-11-06 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Randall Tallerico

Our November 6th presenter was Randall Tellerico, the Chief Marketing Officer for Urban Science.
Urban Science views itself as a valued partner dedicated to helping businesses grow through scientifically validated results.  Mr. Tellerico’s focus was on understanding how generations influence brands.
Millennials make up 21% of consumer purchases and studies have shown that they shop online and pick up at the store, that they must respect the company’s ethics, and that they like loyalty reward programs.  As this applies to car buying, it’s a little different.  Younger shoppers need to physically see and drive the cars they plan on buying, which requires dealerships to be innovative in appealing to those who live in big cities.
The impact of technology in the auto industry is amazing with cars connecting with each other and the government, autonomous vehicles, and electric vehicles.  To learn more about the company, go to
Presenter - Randall Tallerico  2019-11-06 05:00:00Z 0

Interact and Rotary Clubs Work Together at Gleaners


The Grosse Pointe High Schools Interact Club and Grosse Pointe Rotary Club held a joint volunteer work session at Gleaners Food Bank Detroit Distribution Center on Saturday afternoon November 2nd during which thousands of food orders and hummus kits were produced for distribution throughout the Greater Detroit community.  

Pictured from left to right (back and middle rows): Interact VP Drew Cook, Kevin Cox, Charles Krausmann, Mark Cory, Paul Rentenbach, Richard Yeager-Stiver, Will Jarvis, Arthur Mitchell, Julie Baumer, Will Glasser, Jake Kempa, Dave Colton, John Mozena, Susan Allison and Dick Allison. 

Front row from left to right: Sarah Fuller, Ava Boley, Christopher Cleland, Interact treasurer Laine Johnson, Interact Pres. Enya Nguyen, Erica McGraw, Sarah Wholihan, Claire Sheeren, Jack Mozena, and Susan Mozena. (not pictured but present -- Rotarian Bob Lucas)  

Interact volunteer service and leadership clubs around the world are affiliated through Rotary International.  Membership in the Grosse Pointe High Schools Interact Club is open to all high school students in the GP school system.  If you are a high school student and interested in joining Interact please contact Faculty Advisor Kevin Cox at

Interact and Rotary Clubs Work Together at Gleaners 2019-11-02 04:00:00Z 0

Euchre Night

Great fun was had by fellow Rotarians at the first euchre night of the year on the eve of Halloween! Vince Van Tiem had the best euchre hands and played his cards right to win the grand prize.  As usual, everyone else left with a small prize. 
Euchre Night 2019-10-30 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Carmen Szurpicki

Carmen Szurpicki is the Senior Manager for Individual Philanthropy for the Children’s Center.
The Center, located in Midtown Detroit, is celebrating its 90th anniversary.  Its mission is to help children and families shape their own futures with a purpose to improve the lives of children and families which, in turn, will strengthen communities.  It offers annual support to 7,500 children, many who have behavioral or educational issues in addition to having suffered severe trauma.
It offers 20 programs/services which 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 and household items, homework help, a center for family literacy, and an activity room for all sorts of gatherings.
The Center’s $26.5 million budget is raised through Medicaid, State money, and private donations.  To learn more, please go to
Presenter - Carmen Szurpicki 2019-10-30 04:00:00Z 0

Visit from John Chambers, District 6400 District Governor

This week we had our annual visit from our District Governor.  This years District 6400 District Governor is John Chambers.
John Chambers has a been a Detroit AM Rotarian since 2004 and has participated on numerous mission trips to countries such as Nicaragua and Haiti.  These trips have had a profound impact on him and he believes that Rotarians should step outside their comfort zones.  For example, on one medical trip, he worked as an assistant to a dental hygienist. (Not his profession).
This year’s RI motto is Rotary Connects the World and the two goals of the RI President is to increase membership and involve families.  Mr. Chambers believes that our District is taking active steps to increase membership by bringing potential new members to meetings, starting a new club, and having an “E Club” (meets online).  He also believes that Rotarians should involve their families by bringing them to meetings and having them participate in service projects. 
The District Governor asked President Judy for nominees to receive a “Do The Right Thing” certificate that he would present.  Through a blind Club board vote, Mike Carmody was the deserving recipient for his work on the GP Library tool collection, the tot lot, and as Executive Secretary.
This year’s District Conference takes place from 5/15/20 to 5/17/20 at Kalahari Resort in Sandusky, OH.  To register, go to
Visit from John Chambers, District 6400 District Governor 2019-10-23 04:00:00Z 0

Defer School Cleanup

Defer students have a "no chemicals in the ground" policy to protect the environment, and as a consequence weeds need to be 
periodically removed and the campus green/gardens tended to.  The high school Interact student volunteers are Asher Comes (standing left), Laine Johnson, and Erica McGraw (standing middle -- wearing black coats) and GPS High School teacher Kevin Cox (Interact adviser -- standing back row right). Rotarians and guests, standing left to right: Jackie Gleason, Richard O'Neill, Diane Strickler, Bob Lucas and Dick Allison.  Kneeling is George McMullen, Rotary Interact Chairman.  Interact clubs are an offshoot of Rotary Clubs and they exist to do pro bono projects that make a difference for school and community.    
Defer School Cleanup 2019-10-19 04:00:00Z 0
GP Rotary in the news 2019-10-19 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Rebecca Fannon

Rebecca Fannon is the Community Relations Specialist for the Grosse Pointe Public School System.
The topic was the upcoming millage proposals on the November 5th ballot.  (1) Operating Millage Restoration and Extension which funds textbooks, technology tools, and other instructional materials for the students. (2) Sinking Fund Renewal which funds the construction and repairs of school buildings and facilities.  Studies have shown that the district needs to spend $10 million/year to maintain its facilities.  If these millages don’t pass the GPPSS would lose 25% of its operating budget and $3 million of the funds needed for its buildings.  Although not legally able to state so on the ballots, both proposals will only renew what everyone is already paying. 
Ms. Fannon began her talk about an area she believes is often understated – the quality of the GPPSS.  It is the #1 place to teach and its teachers are constantly at the top in best teachers polls.  The GPPSS is the #4 district in the State, #1 in Wayne County, and in the top 5% nation-wide.  There will be an open house to promote our schools from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM this Sunday, 10/20.
Presenter - Rebecca Fannon 2019-10-16 04:00:00Z 0
2019 Progressive Dinner 2019-10-14 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Tom Halpin

Tom Halpin has been the principal in a small sales agency that has repped 40 companies over the last 15 years.  He is becoming more of a consultant and is the author of the book The Customer Prevention Culture.
This culture is based on 5 common missteps: (1) the customer is not king, (2) company-centric (not customer-centric) infrastructure, (3) tribes and silos with a lack of shared organizational outcomes, (4) too many unnecessary customer touchpoints, and (5) no values to form culture, not being proactive to inspire team members.
Mr. Halpin’s remedy is the “culture of commerce” that flips 1 – 5 around by inspiring team behavior that drives the customer experience.  This behavior is maintained through listening mechanisms to track the experience which should be all flow and no friction. 
An innovative video of the customer prevention culture can be viewed at
Presenter - Tom Halpin 2019-10-09 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Last week Dave Colton, went old school and passed it on for a faux pas, to Mark Brooks for misstating in the Rotarpointe that Dave was a volunteer cook this summer at Cornerstone (University) and not Crossroads.
Oil Can 2019-10-09 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Lawrence Burns

Lawrence Burns is the President & CEO of the Children’s Foundation.
The Foundation (formerly the Children’s Hospital of Michigan Foundation) was formed when the DMC hospitals were purchased by Vanguard Health Systems and became for-profit entities.  It began with $100 million that was in the coffers of the foundation that had to legally dissolve.  
In trying to help children stay on the path to healthy lives, the Foundation’s focus areas include mental health, oncology & cardiology research, abuse & neglect, injury prevention, and nutritional wellness.  It does this by partnering with 70 non-profits, civic organizations, and other foundations.  This year, $6 million in grants have been awarded from 200 proposals received.  A total of $55 million has been awarded since 2011.
The Foundation looks to work with other organizations to expand outreach, awareness, and fundraising initiatives.  It does so by running 501(c)(3)s such as the Jamie Daniels Foundation and handling the marketing for the Paul W. Smith Golf Classic.
To learn more, please go to
Presenter - Lawrence Burns 2019-10-02 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Paige Niehaus, admittedly “not a cook”, passed the Oil Can to Dave Colton for his talent and love for cooking, evident at the Cornerstone lunches.
Oil Can 2019-10-02 04:00:00Z 0

Second Mile Center donation

Mark Cory presented a $600 check from the Grosse Pointe Rotary Foundation to Ruth Azar, the Executive Director of the Second Mile Center, to help provide meals for children.
Second Mile Center donation 2019-10-02 04:00:00Z 0

2019 District Governor Golf Outing

This year Ron Vitale, Mary Tipp, Susan Mozena and Peter Stroh joined John Chambers, Governor of Rotary District 6400 (center), for the 38th Annual District Governor's Golf Outing.
2019 District Governor Golf Outing 2019-09-30 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Berschback and Harris

Our speakers on September 25th were Suzy Berschback, Beaumont Healthy Communities Manager, and Mary Jo Harris, Community Organizer of CARE of Southeastern Michigan.
Healthy Communities is a place-based initiative that encourages residents to lead healthier lives and emphasizes a shared responsibility for community health, while encouraging residents to take active roles in their own health.
The GP/Harper Woods branch is the 5th Beaumont Healthy Community.  Volunteers meet monthly to offer ideas about partnering with existing activities to help them grow.  This includes walking, running, and biking groups as well as community partners.  In addition to being healthier, being active helps fight isolation and loneliness. 
CARE’s mission is is to strengthen resiliency in people and their communities through prevention, education, and servies that improve the quality of life.  Ms. Harris works on mental health awareness and a substance abuse prevention task force.  Three areas of focus: (1) Reduce teen addiction to vaping and alcohol through school presentations. (2) Reduce opiod related deaths by providing Narcan and having drug take-back days.  (3) Work on fighting the stigma of mental health and suicide prevention by partnering with ogranizations like the Family Center and Kevin’s Song.
Presenters - Berschback and Harris 2019-09-25 04:00:00Z 0

Kids on the Go donation

On September 18th, Roger Hull, President of the Grosse Pointe Rotary Foundation, presented a $500 check to Kristy Schena, for Kids on the Go. GP Rotary has been supporting Kids on the Go for 20 years.
Kids on the Go donation 2019-09-18 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Steve McMillan, as the Club mentor for Paige Neihaus, passed it to Paige for proactively checking all of the new member boxes when she was a “red badger”.
Oil Can 2019-09-18 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Mac Gallagher

Mac Gallagher is the owner of Max Box.
Mac Gallagher, a GP resident, is a Golden Gloves champion, a former Penn State football player, and now helps coach the GP South freshmen football team.
Max Box, located at Mack and Hampton in GP Woods, uses boxing as a way to exercise.  It offers heavy bags, speed bags, and one on one training.  His business focuses on seniors after seeing the benefits of “rock steady boxing” with those suffering from Parkinson’s.  He believes his workouts are a way to stack the deck against “age related decline” diseases.
The workouts combine strength training (that the person feels when striking the instructor’s hand) and endurance by constantly moving when throwing punches.  Mr. Gallagher believes there is a connection between movement and the brain when he yells out the punch combinations – jab (1), cross (2), hook (3), and uppercut (4).  It requires the participant to think and react while undergoing strenuous physical activity.  
George McMullen volunteered for the physical demonstration and handled throwing the punch combinations like a seasoned pro.
Presenter - Mac Gallagher 2019-09-18 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Vince and Doris Van Tiem passed it to Steve McMillan for spontaneously nudging 8 Rotarians to donate to Friends of Kenyan Orphans when the Ozars spoke.
Oil Can 2019-09-11 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Patty Sunisloe

Diane Strickler began the presentation by talking about the origin and history of the Family Center and then introduced the new Executive Director, Patty Sunisloe.
Diane’s last vocational talk was 15 years ago.  She started her career as a nurse and working in emergency rooms triggered a passion for prevention.  This led to her receiving a masters in social work.  After moving to GP in 1997, Diane started the Family Center in 2000. 
One of the first obstacles the Center ran into was getting the very private GP residents to talk about topics that they wanted to avoid.  They did this by providing online counselors and mentors that people could choose on their own and by videotaping presentations that could be watched at home.  In the past few years, talks about topics like substance abuse and suicide have been more readily accepted.
Ms. Sunisloe has taken the reins as the Center has regrouped.  Its vision is to be the first source for building resilient families to ensure thriving communities.  They have great programs coming up on suicide prevention, the developing brain, and aging.  To see the schedule, learn more, or make a donation, please go to
Presenter - Patty Sunisloe 2019-09-11 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Melanie Taylor

Melanie Taylor was the winner of the Distinguished Young Woman of Michigan 2018.
Melanie won this title in high school and spoke to the Club about what was involved before heading out to the national competition in Mobile Alabama.  Distinguished Young Women is a national scholarship program that takes place in all 50 states and awards a billion dollars in scholarships each year. 
The competition consists of a review of extracurricular activities, transcripts and test scores, self-expression, and on-stage interview, and a fitness/health portion.  Throughout the process, Melanie made some great friends and earned $7,000 in scholarship money.
Since then, Melanie has completed her freshman year at U of M where she is majoring in public policy and writes for the Michigan Daily as well as a foreign policy journal.  She was also able to attend the 2019 national competition as a “has been” where she rekindled friendships, went on publicity tours, and was able to enjoy the city of Mobile.
To learn more, you can contact Melanie at or go to
Melanie presenting a club flag from the Mobile, AL Sunrise Club.
Presenter - Melanie Taylor 2019-09-04 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Bud and Sue Ozar

Bud and Sue Ozar are the founders of Friends of Kenyan Orphans
The organization is dedicated to raising and granting funds and resources to grass root organizations in Kenya which support a dignified life for orphaned or abandoned girls by providing basic human needs of food, shelter, clothing, education and healthcare within a safe and caring environment.
The Ozars talked primarily about the St. Clare Centre for Girls - a school and living facility that they raised funds to build in 2008 - for 350 orphaned or abandoned girls from ages 4 to 20.  The girls are rescued from slums, displaced persons’ camps (that arose from disputed election violence), early marriages, and female circumcisions.
The Centre operates under four pillars – work, study, prayer, and sport/exercise.  The Ozars are amazed at the amount of studying done by the girls who realize the importance of an education.  To this end, since 2014, the Ozars have been raising funds to pay for their graduates’ higher education – college, university, or trade school.
The Ozars have such a powerful story that 9 Rotarians committed $100 each to their cause.  Others are welcome to bring a check to the next meeting or donate on their website
Presenters - Bud and Sue Ozar 2019-08-28 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Gail Marlow

Gail Marlow is the Executive Director of the Motor City Mitten Mission.
The organization began with the providing of sleeping mats and pillows to the homeless that are made out of recycled plastic bags and has expanded into also supplying food and clothing.  In 2019, it has provided 600 mats made out of 2 million plastic bags.  This is all accomplished by volunteers working out of St. Clare Church.
Ms. Marlow is very passionate about serving the homeless and, because she does outreach every day, she gets to know them and can help facilitate services on their behalf.  To learn more of all the Mission does, visit  To offer financial assistance through the Quicken Loans Challenge, go to
Presenter - Gail Marlow 2019-08-21 04:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellows

Kim Towar gave a brief summary of the Rotary International Foundation (to learn more, go to as she presented Paul Harris (x7) pins to Steve McMillan and Diane Strickler.
Paul Harris Fellows 2019-08-21 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Anna Gleason

Our presenter on August 14th was Anna Gleason, one of our outbound exchange student who lived in Finland. 
Anna’s presentation focused on family, friends, school, trips, the Finnish culture, and what she learned. 
Her love for her three host families was obvious as she considers each to be part of her family.  Because the Finnish people are so reserved, Anna had to really push herself, which involved speaking Finnish, to find friends.  In school, she enjoyed the International Club and practicing dancing for months for a formal ball.  Her travels took her all over Finland as well as to Estonia, Sweden, and Russia.
Anna found the country to be beautiful and the Finnish people to be very reserved, with very little small talk.  She felt that learning the language was very important (the 6th hardest to learn) and is proud of what she accomplished.
Anna will be studying marine biology, and become a Rotaract member, at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia this fall.
Presenter - Anna Gleason 2019-08-14 04:00:00Z 0

Tot Lot Update

A huge thank you to Jon and Lisa Gandelot who, as trustees of the Edward and Ellen Dryer Foundation, donated $35,000 to sponsor one of the big playscapes.  As of 8/14/19 the current donation total is $102,236 ($250,000 goal) from 36 donors.
Tot Lot Update 2019-08-14 04:00:00Z 0

Visiting Rotarian

Therese Maggioncalda was a visiting Rotarian at the last meeting.  She is a member of the Taylor Michigan Rotary club. (Pictured on the left with our Julie Baumer)
Visiting Rotarian 2019-08-14 04:00:00Z 0

Tot Lot Update

We have broken the $100K mark thanks to many generous donations.  But we a ways to go.  Please click here to learn more and help. 
Tot Lot Update 2019-08-13 04:00:00Z 0

Life Remodeled

Rugged GP Rotarians put on their work clothes and helped clear brush and debris from blighted areas surrounding Durfee Innovation Society in Detroit. (Pictured: Ted Everingham, Judy Baumer, Diane Strickler, Jessica Keyser and Bob Lucas)
Richard and Susan Allison helped with the Food Stand.  (Susan is in the middle with the hat.)
Life Remodeled 2019-08-07 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Elizabeth Weigandt

Elizabeth Weigandt is the Author of the Queen Bee.
Ms. Weigandt grew up in Royal Oak and has lived in Grosse Pointe Farms for three years.  She believes that Grosse Pointe is a great literary community with its 3 libraries, 2 newspapers, and a magazine.  Her career has been in public relations but she has always wanted to write a book. 
Writing at night, it took her three years to finish the Queen Bee.  It’s a story about a worker bee, Manuka, and her friend, Cotton, who are banished from their hive for trying to warn the queen bee about a problem with the honey making everyone sick.  Their adventures are situated on Belle Isle and take place inside the Conservatory. 
Ms. Weigandt says there are three parts to telling a great story: (1) Set the stakes -- create tension with a problem that needs solving. (2) Develop the arc – build momentum and show what is happening.  (3) Resolve the stakes – a strong ending with the problem being solved.
Presenter - Elizabeth Weigandt 2019-08-07 04:00:00Z 0

Tot Lot Update

$65,000 has been donated or pledged.  Thank you to Mark and Gail Zmyslowski for purchasing the Comfort Cave and to Jennifer Boettcher and the Grosse Pointe Chamber Foundation for donating $35,000 to purchase the 5-10 Playscape.  (Pictured; Ted Everingham and Jennifer Boettcher)
Tot Lot Update 2019-08-07 04:00:00Z 0

Service Above Self Award

Ted Everingham presented Florence Seltzer with the Service Above Self Award as she was unable to attend the Passing of the Gavel.
Service Above Self Award 2019-08-07 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Liz Vogel gave it to both Vince Van Tiem and Doris Neal Van Tiem
for helping her with the speaker program this year. 
Oil Can 2019-08-07 04:00:00Z 0


On August 6th, members of The Rotary Club of Grosse Pointe returned to Crossroads where they once again volunteered there time to help make and distribute free lunches through a Crossroads program. Crossroads is a social service outreach agency with two locations in Detroit. Founded in 1971, Crossroads exists to support the community at large by providing emergency assistance, advocacy, and counseling to anyone in need.
For more information about Crossroads please visit.
Crossroads 2019-08-06 04:00:00Z 0
GP Rotarian in the News 2019-08-01 04:00:00Z 0

Presentation - Tot Lot Re-Imagined.

In 1973, our Club installed the Tot Lot at the corner of St. Clair and Waterloo.  The Club then raised funds in 1997 for a makeover which is what is currently in place there. 
Bob Lucas noted that this ambitious project began in March and that 18 Rotarians are involved.  Mike Carmody then followed with more details and a very informative video was played.  View it here:
Roger Hull, as the fundraising chair, completed the presentation, stating that every member is part of this committee as either an ambassador, an advocate, or an “asker”.  If you know of anyone who would be willing to make a sizable donation, please contact Roger.  He is hoping to be bombarded with names. 
The goal is to raise $250,000 before the end of the year to purchase new ADA/ADHD compliant playscape structures.  There will be two sets of structures, one for ages 2-5 and one for ages 5-10. 
If you would like to make an online donation, cut and paste:
To publicize, articles will appear in the Grosse Pointe Magazine, weekly in the GP News, and banners will be placed around town.  Thank you to John Minnis and Kim Towar.
A press conference will take place at noon on August 1st at the Tot Lot.
Presentation - Tot Lot Re-Imagined.  2019-07-31 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Christopher Bunch

Christopher Bunch is the Executive Director of the Six Rivers Land Conservancy.
Six Rivers Land Conservancy is a private, non-profit land conservation organization working to sustain the quality and character of the natural resources around us.  Its mission is to conserve, sustain, and connect natural areas, lands, and waters that make the places we live special.
The primary way it fulfills its mission is through conservation easements which are legal agreements between a landowner and Six Rivers that permanently restricts the future activities on the land in order to protect its natural resources and conservation values.  This allows the organization to protect the land without owning it.
Another way that Six Rivers tries to preserve land is by purchasing it.  It’s in the process of raising funds to buy 300 acres of forested wetlands in Anchor Bay.  It also assists public agencies with land purchases as they try to qualify for state money through the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund.
Mr. Bunch noted that “nature is not just up north” and his hope is that the residents of southeast Michigan recognize the value of preserved land where they live and work.  To learn more, go to
Presenter - Christopher Bunch 2019-07-24 04:00:00Z 0

Youth Exchange Student

Katie Dotson (second for the right) is our outbound youth exchange student for 2019-2020. She leaves for Denmark on August 2, 2019 and will be there for a year returning in July 2020. She is a 2019 graduate from Grosse Pointe South.  Pictured from left to right, Steve McMillan, one of our Youth exchange counselors, Judy Masserang, our current GP Rotary club president, Katie Dotson, and Bill Scott, the youth exchange officer.
Youth Exchange Student 2019-07-17 04:00:00Z 0

Presenters - Nancy Weigandt and Tom Milano of Detroit Abloom.

Our presenters on July 10th were Nancy Weigandt and Tom Milano from Detroit Abloom.
Detroit Abloom is a non-profit that began repurposing vacant land in Detroit by planting vegetable gardens.  After receiving a Kresge Foundation grant to demonstrate whether ‘non-edible’ crops grown on the land could generate enough revenue to pay the land taxes and property maintenance, it shifted its focus from food to flower production.
The organization is involved in many activities, such as a healthy community coalition in the Grosse Pointes and Harper Woods, planning
school gardens, having horticultural projects for youth, putting together a native plant nursery and a pollinator garden.  The hope is to turn 11 square miles of Detroit and the Grosse Pointes into a butterfly sanctuary.  Detroit Abloom will provide a free consultation to anyone interested in having a butterfly waystation at their residence.
Detroit Abloom earns money by providing flower arrangements for weddings and events, selling live plants, and providing presentations and consultation services.   To learn more, please visit
Presenters - Nancy Weigandt and Tom Milano of Detroit Abloom.  2019-07-10 04:00:00Z 0

A new home for Grosse Pointe Rotary

Just a quick peek at our new digs at the Grosse Pointe Yacht Club.  This is the crowd that attended the first meeting at our new location.  Time and format has not change and as always, guests are welcomed.
A new home for Grosse Pointe Rotary 2019-07-10 04:00:00Z 0

Rookie of the Year

Heather Mayernik is the proud recipient of the 2018-19 Rookie of the Year Award.  Each year the current president chooses a new member who provided service above and beyond what  would would be expected from a first year member. Congratulations Heather!
Rookie of the Year 2019-07-10 04:00:00Z 0

A new home for our Plaques

Our Grosse Pointe Rotary Club plaques have a new home in the Grosse Pointe Library (main branch) Adult Reading room.  We are very excited about this move and in the process we were even able to fix the clock which has not worked in over 10 years. So the next time you are at the library, stop in and see if you recognize and of the names of our prestigious recipients. 
A new home for our Plaques 2019-07-09 04:00:00Z 0
GP Rotary in the News 2019-07-04 04:00:00Z 0


On July 2nd, members of The Rotary Club of Grosse Pointe volunteered there time to help make and distribute free lunches through a Crossroads program. Crossroads is a social service outreach agency with two locations in Detroit. Founded in 1971, Crossroads exists to support the community at large by providing emergency assistance, advocacy, and counseling to anyone in need.
For more information about Crossroads please visit.
Crossroads 2019-07-02 04:00:00Z 0

Frank J. Sladen scholarships

Grosse Pointe Rotary proudly presented the Frank J. Sladen scholarships to six outstanding graduating students from Grosse Pointe North and South high schools.   The Sladen scholarships are awarded mainly on character, challenge, and service above self - all passions relevant to the life of Frank Sladen and to the ideals of the  Grosse Pointe Rotary Club.  Frank devoted his life to the mission of Rotary and was a Michigan District Governor, and was a Rotary International Director.  Frank also served as a distinguished board member of the Grosse Pointe Public School System
Pictured are:  Samantha Cannon, Troy Herd, Chloe Kelly, Tiara Lang, Shreya Rana, William Sottrel
Frank J. Sladen scholarships 2019-06-26 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Susan Mozena passed it to Liz Vogel for doing such a great time as our Program Chair while obtaining her Masters in Business Administration and working full time.
Oil Can 2019-06-25 04:00:00Z 0

Presentation - Bell's Beer Bayview Mackinac Race

Our presenters on Wednesday were Past Bayview Commodore (1994) Brian Geraghty and Bob Nutter, Chair of the 2019 Bell's Beer Bayview Mackinac Race
The race started in 1925 and is the world’s longest continuously run long distance fresh water yacht race.  The actual route has changed periodically over the years to its current two route format, one for slower and one for faster boats so they can reach the finish line about the same time.
Both of our speakers are proud of their “old goat” status which signifies they have participated in at least 25 races and Mr. Nutter is a double “old goat” as he also has over 25 Chicago to Mackinac races under his belt.
This year’s race takes place on July 20th and there are 205 boats registered.  Mr. Nutter’s says the strategy of his committee is to keep it continuous, organized, and fun.  For a history of the race and firsthand accounts, go to
Presentation - Bell's Beer Bayview Mackinac Race 2019-06-19 04:00:00Z 0

Interact Guests

George McMullen recognized two Interact officers who were unable to attend the meeting run by their Club.  Junior Lloyd Dennis (Secretary) and Wyatt Dennis (Treasurer), who will be attending U of M next year and is the recipient of this year’s GP Rotary Interact scholarship. 
Interact Guests 2019-06-19 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Fred Pearson

Our speaker on Wednesday was Fred Pearson, a Detroit Rotarian and Wayne State Professor as well as a panel of four Muslim students from WSU and U of M Dearborn. (Pictured (starting back left): Fred Pearson, Gay Niehaus, Robert Duker, Mohammedhassan Alsheraa, Lauren Linderman, Ali Alqaragholi, and Sarah Imnan, )
Dr. Pearson is a Professor of Political Science and the Director of the Center for Peace and Conflict Studies.  He described the areas that he is working in and showed a video of Rotary Peace Fellows in action.  Primarily, they are forming non-profits to make the world a better place to live. Dr. Pearson served as a moderator for the panel.
The panel consisted of two men and two women.  The men’s nationality were Iraqi, while one woman’s was Syrian and the other was raised Baptist in Dearborn and converted to Islam last year.
Q&A format: 
-- Lauren Linderman, who converted was asked to explain her motivating factors?  She said that growing up with nice Muslim friends, she didn’t understand why Baptists believed that were damned to hell because they didn’t believe in Jesus.  She also found the Quran to be more fact based and less faith based than the bible.
-- When asked about the impact extremists have on their religion, they replied that there are over 1.5 billion Muslims in the world and there will always be those who are bad people.  The Koran doesn’t preach violence and the students believe that being better educated about their faith would bring a better understanding.
-- When asked about the fighting in the Middle East between the Shia and Sunni Muslims, they explained that the tensions are not centered around their religious differences but are more about politics and power in the area. 
The prominent message expressed by one of the students is that we should all be tolerant and get to know one another and that people need to learn how to express their disagreements in a learning manner.
Dr. Pearson closed with a reminder of a Rotary event on October 25th & 26th called Peace in the Streets.  It is a cross border Rotary peace symposium. 
(A very informative meeting.  Thank you to George McMullen for setting it up).
Presenter - Fred Pearson 2019-06-12 04:00:00Z 0

Joint meeting

Our last meeting was a long over due joint meeting between the Grosse Pointe Rotary Club and the Grosse Pointe Sunrise Rotary Club.  Both President Gay Niehaus and President Robert Duker shared running the meeting. It was a great turnout and here are a few pictures of the event.
Joint meeting 2019-06-12 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Kristy Schena

Kristy Schena is the founder and executive director of Kids On The Go.
Kids On The Go (KOTG) is a pediatric non-profit designed to provide special needs children (3-17 years) with physical, occupational and speech therapy during the summer months.  Its mission is to recognize and facilitate the goals of children with special needs and to further develop their skills through therapeutic and wellness programs for the children and their families.
Now in its 21st year, KOTG has progressed from 13 scholarships in 1999 to 350 this year.  Each scholarship is worth $500.  It now operates with other non-profits out of a former school in the Southlake District. 
Ms. Schena has talked to our Club many times over the years about all of the great KOTG programs.   In addition to the multidisciplinary summer camp, it also offers golf, flag football, baseball, tennis, cheer, music, art, and theatre.  For the older children, it has a teen to work program where they learn how to fill out an application and take part in an interview.  They are also able to attend occupational and speech therapy work stations and participate in job shadowing.  KOTG has recently partnered with the Special Olympics Health and Wellness Program where the children exercise and learn about nutrition.
Presenter - Kristy Schena 2019-06-05 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Wesley Berry

Wesley Berry – Author of Big Things Have Small Beginnings.
Mr. Berry took his family’s florist business from a $60,000/year business to a $60 million dollar company.  He franchised locations and took early advantage of the internet and began delivering internationally.
With a talk focusing on leadership, Mr. Berry believes that those willing to take risks, are not afraid to fail, and willing to take radical steps to make a mark will be successful and leaders in their business.  Early in his career, he did this by calling local radio and TV stations on the first of each month to barter flowers for advertising.  This bartered advertising increased profits by a tremendous amount in less than a year.
Mr. Berry handed out business cards that asked for the holder of the card to put a short, “workable” wish on the back of it and then place in your wallet/purse.  He believes that your subconscious will remember this and will find you examples of the wish coming true when you are not even looking for it.
Finally, Mr. Berry asked that everyone consider being a mentor as some point in their life. As a teenager, he was fortunate to have one who, although he was providing similar advice that he received from his father, made more of an impact because he was not someone he saw on a daily basis.
Presenter - Wesley Berry 2019-05-29 04:00:00Z 0

Interact Led Meeting

Our last meeting was led by the members of Grosse Pointe High School Interact Club.  Interact clubs bring together young people to develop leadership skills while discovering the power of Service above Self. This year’s Interact officers are President Elliott Gunnell, Vice-President Enya Nguyen, Secretary Lloyd Dennis, and Treasurer Wyatt Dennis.  Its goal was to impact common humanity and have fun doing it. (Pictured are Kevin Cox Faculty adviser, Laine Johnson, Elliott Gunnell, Enya Nguyen and Gary Niehaus.)
In addition to running the meeting they gave a presentation on this years goals and achievements.  The Club had a two prong approach to the year.  (1) Create a positive club environment by having an active and engaged community with icebreakers and activities.  (2) Have tangible service projects with easy, local, and convenient opportunities and then conduct post project debriefings to gauge the impact of each one.
Interact Led Meeting 2019-05-22 04:00:00Z 0

The Library at Beacon

On May 22nd the Grosse Pointe Rotary club helped increase the book selection at Beacon Elementary School in Harper Woods by delivering over 200 books. Thank you to the Grosse Pointe South Interact Club for their recent book drive and making the Library at Beacon better for the students and district.
The Library at Beacon 2019-05-22 04:00:00Z 0

Khris Mapp Project Update

On April 10th we heard Khris Mapp speak about his project to provide free clothing, school supplies and personal hygiene products to children in need in the Mt. Clemens area.  We also learned that the Khris Mapp Project is a one man show with limited resources.  One of our fellow Rotarians was so moved by Khris' efforts that he decided to help him by building a GoFundMe account.  Khris’ story is an interesting one. Click here if you would like to learn more.
Khris Mapp Project Update 2019-05-19 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Lisa Gandelot and Stuart Gregg

Our presenters on May 15th were Lisa Gandelot and Stuart Grigg of The Grosse Pointe Historical Society.
Lisa provided a brief history of the Society.  It was formed in 1945 but didn’t really become an active organization until 1980 when a group of residents became concerned about the tearing down of historical buildings.  In the last 40 years, it has bought and preserved two buildings (including the Provencal-Weir house).  It has also placed historical signs around the Pointes and provided plaques to older buildings with architectural significance.   
Mr. Grigg talked about the new home that will be built for the Society.  It will be a 5,600 square foot building on Kercheval, across the street from the P-W building, with ample room for storage and areas to view blueprints, artifacts, and exhibits.  He is very excited about being able to digitize historical books in their possession through a recently purchased scanner that scans without having to take the books apart. 
Lisa is the co-chair of the fundraising campaign for the new permanent home along with Mason Ferry, who was also in attendance. The Society’s 16th annual fundraising gala will take place on June 13th at the Anderson Villa on Lakeshore.  To learn more about the Society, the gala, or to make a donation, please visit  (Pictured: Mason Ferry, Lisa Gandelot, Stuart Grigg and Paul Rentenbach)
Presenter - Lisa Gandelot and Stuart Gregg 2019-05-15 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Linda Dewey

Linda Dewey, our presenter this week, spoke about the Kassel Mission of World War II.
Ms. Dewey’s father, Bill Dewey, was a pilot in the 445th Bomb Group in WWII.  35 bombers and 336 men of this Group suffered the greatest single-day loss to one airfield in aviation history.  In what was supposed to be an easy mission, soon became a tragedy on the return flight to the airfield they were attacked without fighter support.  In a battle that took only 6 minutes, only 4 of the 35 planes returned. 
A video told the story of the battle and the losses sustained and ended with both the Americans and Germans coming together in 1990 at a ceremony memorializing the location of where the lead plane crashed. 
As Ms. Dewey stated – no one who dies for their country should be forgotten.
Presenter - Linda Dewey 2019-05-08 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Irena Politano described the recipient as someone who welcomed her into the club, is a bit of a joker, and may have suffered a recent injury (John Mozena), when she veered off course and gave it to Susan Mozena for living with John.  Nicely done!
Oil Can 2019-05-08 04:00:00Z 0
New Member Induction - Matt Pingel 2019-05-08 04:00:00Z 0

New Member Induction - Scott Matthews

Scott Matthews, sponsored by Richard O’Neill, is the President of  He lives in GP Woods with his wife, Ruth Azar, and is a 3rd generation Rotarian.
New Member Induction - Scott Matthews 2019-05-08 04:00:00Z 0

5,000 Ways You Know You’re From Detroit

Our presentors today were Chris Edwards and Elaine Weeks, co-authors of "5,000 Ways You Know You’re From Detroit"
Although Canadian, Mr. Edwards and Ms. Weeks have a love affair with the City of Detroit.  They focused their talk on the City being the Arsenal of Democracy in WWII and leading the car boom in the 1950s which led to greater mobility and independence for baby boomers.  Their book (available on Amazon) is close to 500 pages with over 1,400 pictures of Detroit music icons, TV & radio personalities, food & drink & entertainment venues, and local landmarks.
Mr. Edwards closed with the comment that Detroit’s current comeback is in the DNA of the city and its people.
5,000 Ways You Know You’re From Detroit 2019-05-01 04:00:00Z 0

Vocational Service Award

George McMullen presented the individual Vocational Service Award to Ed Lazar for all he does in the community.  His involvement with community organizations is numerous, with a focus on veterans.
Vocational Service Award 2019-05-01 04:00:00Z 0

Eco-Friendly Gardening

Defer Elementary School has an eco-friendly gardening and weeding project where no pesticide or herbicide treatments are put in the ground.  Again this spring, a few Rotarians, even one who only weeks ago submitted his application for membership, showed up with gloves and tools to clean out flowerbeds and hedges, and pull some of the largest dandelions ever seen!  Pictured are Dick Allison (project champion), Diane Strickler, Julie Baumer, and Matthew Pingell (clearing leaves from bushes using a borrowed rake -- too recent a homeowner to possess his own).
Eco-Friendly Gardening 2019-04-27 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

Phil MacKethan passed it to Irena Politano for her involvement in the Club.  After joining in 2018, she is already serving on the fundraising committee and will be a Club Board member next year.
Oil Can 2019-04-17 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Ernestine Lyons

Ernestine Lyons brings SOUP to Harper Woods
Harper Woods Soup is a spin off from Detroit Soup which was founded 5 years ago as a micro-granting dinner celebrating creative projects.  The concept – people make a $5 donation to listen to four individuals make a four minute pitch of a business idea and then ask questions. They then vote on the best idea while enjoying donated soup, salads, and other foods and there is typically entertainment.  The winner takes home the donated money and then reports on his/her progress at the next event.
The inaugural Harper Woods Soup takes place on April 28th at 6:30 PM at Eastland Center (Burlington).  The hope is to conduct one on a quarterly basis.
Presenter - Ernestine Lyons 2019-04-17 04:00:00Z 0

Forgotten Harvest 

With the mission of working to relieve hunger and prevent nutritious food waste in the metro Detroit area, Forgotten Harvest began in 1990 to rescue food surpluses from grocery stores, markets, restaurants, caterers, and more.  They also grow their own food on 95 acres of donated land. Volunteers repackage food which Forgotten Harvest then delivers free-of-charge to emergency food providers. Ten GP Rotarians and 2 GP North H.S. Interact members volunteered on Saturday afternoon, April 13 and helped bag 14,300 pounds of potatoes.  Looks like they were having a great time!
Forgotten Harvest 2019-04-15 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Khris Mapp

On April 10th our presenter was Khris Mapp of the Khris Mapp Project.
The Khris Mapp Project (KMP) is a non-profit founded in 2015 on the principles of charity, healing, and community.  Its goal is to help Mt. Clemens area kids, ages 3-12, in need of back-to-school supplies and clothing to help prepare them for a quality education and life.
Mr. Mapp grew up in the east side of Detroit where his mother instilled in him his need to perform community service. Last year, 75 families benefited from his donation of school clothes and supplies at August and Christmas giveaways. 
KMP is currently storing donated/purchased items at Mr. Mapp’s church.  Fundraising efforts are underway to raise money to purchase a home where he would provide students with clothes/supplies and also offer after-school tutoring.  $10,000 has been collected so far towards the goal of $35,000. 
Mr. Mapp’s hope is to improve the quality of life for as many children as he can.  For more information,
Presenter - Khris Mapp 2019-04-10 04:00:00Z 0

New Member Induction

Johann Finkelmeier is the newest member of our Club as of April 10th.  Johann is a vice-president with Goodyear, an experienced pilot, and the significant other of Liz Vogel.  We look forward to seeing him become an active and involved Rotarian.
New Member Induction 2019-04-10 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Natalie Jakub

Our presenter last Wednesday was Natalie Jakub from Bee Green Business.
Ms. Jakub is the Executive Director of a non-profit called Green Living Science.  Its mission is to transform Detroit by teaching about waste and recycling and does this by offering educational programs through the Detroit Public Schools, sharing information with the community, and by working with businesses through its Bee Green Business program.
Bee Green Business educates and certifies businesses and their employees to become responsible corporate citizens.  It offers a free consultation about waste hauling services and then conducts an assessment to reduce waste.  In our area, Bee Green has worked with Red Crown and the GP Chamber of Commerce.
Presenter - Natalie Jakub 2019-04-03 04:00:00Z 0

New Member induction

Mike Carmody inducted Bobby Barrett as our newest member.  Bobby lives in Grosse Pointe City and works for Raymond James in Birmingham.  Please make him feel welcomed and involved in the Club.
New Member induction 2019-04-03 04:00:00Z 0

Oil Can

This week George McMullen passed the Oil Can to Phil MacKethan who, since becoming a member in 2016, is already on the Club’s Board of Directors, chairs the communications committee, and runs our website. 
Oil Can 2019-03-27 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Jody Pear

Last weeks presenter was Jody Pear of Jody Pear Designs.
Ms. Pear has trained to be a color expert where, for example, she is able to pick the right shade of white from the numerous variations available.  As an interior designer, she sees herself as a house coach in which she focuses on having empathy and a purpose in designing and decorating.  Whether it’s your desk, a room, or your house, she believes that it should be aesthetically pleasing but also should tell a story that is unique to you.
Another one of her focuses is treating your house as a “soul oasis”.  The idea is to turn the house into the foundation for you to live your best life because it reflects your soul and points you to the life you’re dreaming of.  As Ms. Pear stated, “house + love = home”.
Presenter - Jody Pear 2019-03-27 04:00:00Z 0

GPR joins KCAH

Grosse Pointe Rotary members joined approximately 430 other volunteers on Saturday, March 24 to help the Kids Coalition Against Hunger.  KCAH has developed an efficient process of packing nutritious meals that were developed by food scientists.  Each packet contains a rich source of easily digestible protein, carbohydrates, and vitamins needed by undernourished children and is acceptable to the broad diversity of ethnic tastes and religious differences around the world.  Thanks to the host, Grosse Pointe Memorial Church (GPMC), and the many helping hands, we were able to complete 75,586 food packets.  Also in attendance were members of GPMC, Scout Troop 86, Detroit Kiwanis, Grosse Pointe Friends and Neighbors, Grosse Pointe South Interact, GPN and GPS Honors Society, The Tutoring Tree from Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian Church, and many local families.
GPR joins KCAH 2019-03-23 04:00:00Z 0

Fellowship Lunch

The lunch bunch crowd was notably larger as we had special guests back in town visiting.  John and Carrie Maliszewski came in for a couple nights before they headed off to Carrie's mother's 100th birthday party.  Thanks to the Master Modeler, Roger Hull, John was presented with the completed model of the plane he flew in the Vietnam War.  The model was originally gifted to John, unbuilt, at his send off party.  
Fellowship Lunch 2019-03-22 04:00:00Z 0

Fellowship Dinner

A good crowd for Fellowship Dinner last Thursday.  And it is always fun when old friends come back to visit, and Mr. Paul's Chophouse did not disappoint.
Fellowship Dinner 2019-03-21 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Dan Dempsey

Dan Dempsey is the VP of Sales and Operations at Hyer.
Mr. Dempsey talked about the “Gig Economy” which believes that, by 2020, 40% of the workforce will identify as independent contractors, working on their own time and schedule.  This is where Hyer comes into play.
Hyer is a new company doing work in the Detroit area with a goal of expanding internationally.  Its role is to facilitate an employer’s ability to hire a worker on a labor on demand basis.  Individuals can develop a profile (vetted by Hyer) on their website and, through a messaging system, introduce businesses to prospective workers. 
The company is looking to take the place of businesses like Kelly Services which are much more expensive and cumbersome.  With Hyer, you can hire an individual to fill an immediate need.  The businesses pay into an account for the work completed and Hyer then directs the payment to the independent contractor and supplies the 1099.
Presenter - Dan Dempsey 2019-03-20 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Stu Alderman

Stu Alderman is the Executive Director of the Grosse Pointe Neighborhood Club.
The Neighborhood Club was formed in 1911 as a service organization.  From its beginning, it has focused on recreation and wellness for the community.  Its mission, as a non-profit, is to provide a professionally organized program of recreation and wellness services for families and individuals of all ages. The Neighborhood Club is a leader in developing cooperative, coordinated plans and programs with other public, private and voluntary agencies that provide recreation and wellness services.
The building more than doubled in size to over 48,000 square feet in 2013 at a cost of $10.6 million.  A loan of $7 million was needed and Mr. Alderman is proud to report that about $3.5 million remains to be paid.  Beaumont Health System leases 25% of this space.
Having a membership provides access to a fitness center, over 60 group exercise classes, a pool (with aquatic classes), a gym, and discounted fees toward its many youth and adult sports leagues.  The Neighborhood Club also has a preschool and runs a thrift shop at University and Mack.
Presenter - Stu Alderman 2019-03-13 04:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Patrick Hartory

Patrick Hartory's presentation on the 6th was called, Reaching Your Community in a Noisy World.
Mr. Hartory is the founder and former head of a national marketing firm that has worked with companies such as Monster Energy and Pro Bull Riding.  His job required him to deal with audiences by enhancing customer experience and engagement and this, quite often, led him to speak to local civic groups.  Today, he is a nationally recognized speaker and marketing influencer.
Looking at the idea of getting your message heard, Mr. Hartory talked about his “three way test” (not wanting to steal from Rotary).  First, is to tell your own story, to make it personal.  Second, is to be authentic and true to yourself.  Third, is to be helpful without being asked.  He highlighted all three with personal, humorous stories.
Mr. Hartory concluded with an addendum to his three way test (3 ½, if you will) with “don’t wait, make a difference today”.  In this noisy world, ask “how can I help”?
Presenter - Patrick Hartory 2019-03-06 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Atticus Henry

Atticus Henry was our presenter on Feb. 27th and spoke about his Six Weeks in Russia.
The eldest son of Peter Henry, Atticus is a junior at South.  This past summer, he spent six weeks in Russia through a National Security Initiative for Youth program.  The NSLI-Y is run by the State Department and the NSA with the purpose of helping youth learn languages that are important to our government (Russian, Chinese, etc).  It offers programs in 13 countries with 7 different languages.
Presenter - Atticus Henry 2019-02-27 05:00:00Z 0

Rotary Youth Leadership Awards

Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) is a global youth leadership program.  GP South students, Madeline Campbell (right) and Enya Nguyen (left), gave a short slideshow presentation of the November weekend they spent with over 100 District 6400 students at Schoolcraft College learning how to engage their peers and to be leaders. Three students from North also attended.
Rotary Youth Leadership Awards 2019-02-27 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Shelly Watts

Shelly Watts is the Chief Development Officer at Humble Design.
Humble Design was formed in Detroit in 2009 and has expanded to Chicago, Seattle, and San Diego.  Its mission is to serve individuals, families, and veterans emerging from homelessness by transforming their empty house into a warm, welcoming, and uplifting home with donated furniture and household goods.
The organization partners with homeless shelters and social service agencies to find those who would be good candidates.  The furnishing of a home is a three day process.  Day 1, the designers meet with the family to determine their tastes.  Day 2, the designers pick
Presenter - Shelly Watts 2019-02-20 05:00:00Z 0

Grosse Pointe Library Book Sale

Periodically Friends and Foundation of the Grosse Pointe Public Library have a book sale to make room on their selves for new books and to raise money for the libraries.  Those that do not sell get donated.  That's where representatives from GP Rotary, GP South Interact, GP North Interact and National honor Society stepped up to lend a hand.  Each volunteer hauled hundreds of unsold books out to the truck for donation. A heavy task made lighter with many hands.
Grosse Pointe Library Book Sale 2019-02-18 05:00:00Z 0

Flower Raffle Winner

Congratulations to Richard O’Neill for picking the joker and kudos to him for donating his winnings back to the Club!  Thank you to Charvat The Florist for the beautiful flower arrangement. Murray Davis was substituting for Florence Seltzer as the official raffle MC when Richard drew the magic card.  50% of the ticket sales go directly to the Grosse Pointe Rotary Foundation.  Thanks to Richard's generosity, this round contributed 100% of the $1,570 in ticket sales.
Flower Raffle Winner 2019-02-18 05:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellow x6

Kim Towar presented Ted Everingham with a Paul Harris x 6 pin.  Great job, Ted!  Making donations through automatic payments (Rotary Direct) is the way to go.
Kim emphasized the good that the RI Foundation does.  An incredibly high 91% of all money donated goes directly to projects.  Kim met a former Rotary Scholar who received a masters degree at MSU and is now the President of Ghana’s chief of staff.  He credits Rotary for his success.
Paul Harris Fellow x6 2019-02-13 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Mary Short

Our presenter on Feb. 13th was Mary Short who is the Marketing & Programming Coordinator for the Grosse Pointe Public Library. (GPPL) 
As part of her job, Ms. Short is trying to increase public awareness, the number of cardholders, and the use of online databases.  She is also helping to create a new website and providing an overall refresh of the brand.  The GPPL’s strategy is to be an essential community resource with a key message of offering a free service to people of all ages in the Grosse Pointes and Harper Woods.
To make all of this happen, the GPPL has revamped its flyers and website with consistent colors and type face. It has increased its advertising and public relations though the GP newspapers and magazines and has enhanced its presence on social media.  It also has increased its community outreach which helps keep its name in the public.
Presenter - Mary Short 2019-02-13 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - John C. Mozena

Our presenter on Feb 6th was John C. Mozena, who is the President of the Center for Economic Development.
The Center was founded in 2018 as an independent, non-partisan, non-profit with a purpose of education and advocacy.  Its mission is to ensure Americans have all of the information they need to demand meaningful transparency, accountability, and reform of wasteful economic development subsidies and incentives in their local communities.

John presented a view of these incentives through the prism of the 4-Way Test.  Is it the TRUTH?: The proposed benefits derived
Presenter - John C. Mozena 2019-02-06 05:00:00Z 0

Rotarians and Gleaners

Nine Grosse Pointe Rotarians and a couple "tag alongs" friends volunteered there time at the Gleaners Food Bank in Detroit.  They bagged and boxed over 3,000 lbs. of sweet potatoes that will be dispensed to people in need.  Click on Read More to see some pictures of them in action.
Rotarians and Gleaners 2019-01-26 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Craig Donnelly

Our speaker this week was Craig Donnellyis.  Craig is the WSU Assistant VP of Economic Development and Chief Strategy Officer of TechTown Detroit.
Mr. Donnelly focused on his work with TechTown, Detroit’s entrepreneurship hub.  Its purpose is to help tech startups and local businesses, as an incubator and accelerator. TechTown operates under three legs.
(1) Space:  It provides workspace at its location near Wayne State.  It has 30 full-time tenants and over 300 members who co-work where they can share desks and offices and use the facility for meetings and events. 
Presenter - Craig Donnelly 2019-01-25 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Ted Everingham

Ted Everingham talked about the Power of the Human Spirit in his continuing recovery from alcoholism. 
Ted was born in Buchanan, MI, grew up in Jackson, and described his childhood as a Norman Rockwell painting.  This idealistic life, at least from an outsider’s perspective, continued through college/law school, his becoming a husband and father, and then a successful lawyer at a prestigious law firm. 
This all changed at age 38...
Presenter - Ted Everingham 2019-01-16 05:00:00Z 0

Vocational Talk

Once again we heard from one of our new members. Paige Niehaus is Provost and Executive Director of the Design Center at Wayne County Community College.  In her 28 years of experience with community/junior colleges, Paige enjoys serving the students and believes people aren’t aware that these colleges offer a low cost education with credits that transfer to 4 year universities.
Vocational Talk 2019-01-16 05:00:00Z 0

Euchre Night

Liz promised the Euchre Tribe one winner this time around, but of course all the losers still got scratch off tickets.  Jim Fikany managed to secure the main prize - a $20 gift card to Dunkin Donuts.  The Euchre group surprised Liz with an extremely generous gift card and gift certificate to have dinner at The Whitney.  She was blown away by the generosity and looks forward to scheduling euchre in February, March and April.
Euchre Night 2019-01-09 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Nick Monacelli

Nick Monacelli is the morning reporter for WDIV.  He starts his day at 2:00 AM, arriving at work at 3:30 AM to prepare for the 5:00 AM newscast.  After the morning show, he continues to work on stories for the evening newcasts, with his day ending at 12:30 PM. 
He is proud to be a reporter on a local news station.  Studies show that local TV is the primary and most trusted source for news.  Some of the national stories that came about by local reporting are the Flint water crisis, the Kwame Kilpatrick corruption case, and the Larry Nasser case.  There are also national stories, such as hurricanes, that requires the local TV news to notify its viewers of available shelters and which areas are being hardest hit.  Mr. Monacelli flew down to Houston to cover Hurricane Harvey so that the local reporters could take care of their families and property.
Presenter - Nick Monacelli 2019-01-09 05:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellow

Kim Towar recognized Roger Hull as being a multiple Paul Harris Fellow with a PHx7 pin.  As Kim stated, Roger has embraced all the good work the RI Foundation does.
Paul Harris Fellow 2019-01-09 05:00:00Z 0

The Euchre group strikes again

Following out meeting on the 19th we had a good turnout for a little euchre fun.  We had enough people for three tables and Philip MacKethan was the big winner.
The Euchre group strikes again 2018-12-19 05:00:00Z 0

The Grunyons

On the 19th, instead of having a presenter we had a performance by the Grunyons.  The a cappella men’s group entertained us with witty banter in between holiday songs, both familiar and new.  To learn about the group’s history, go to
The Grunyons 2018-12-19 05:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellow

Kim Towar presented a Paul Harris pin to Phil MacKethan for accumulating $1,000 in donations to the Rotary International Foundation.  The RI Foundation’s purpose is “to do good in the world” by, among other things, trying to eradicate polio (2.5 billion immunized since 1985), establishing Peace Centers around the world, and providing grants that come back to local charitable projects.
Paul Harris Fellow 2018-12-19 05:00:00Z 0

Grosse Pointe Rotary In The News

Looking for a few good host families
Rotary Club promotes youth exchange program
By Mary Anne Brush on December 12, 2018

Hosting an exchange student through the Rotary Club of Grosse Pointe can be a life-changing experience, according to former hosts. The cultural exchange enriches not just the visiting students, but the families who open their homes, schools and communities throughout the yearlong stay.

The Rotary youth exchange program started in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1927. More than 90 years later... Read More Here

Grosse Pointe Rotary In The News 2018-12-12 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Rev. Susan Mozena

Rev. Susan Mozena gave us a fascinating presentation about her trip on a B-52 Bomber.
Susan’s father, Charles d’Olive, was a reserve pilot in WWI as a part of the Army’s 93rd aviation squadron.  He achieved the first aerial kill in the squadron’s history, ultimately shooting down 5 planes over a week period.  This earned him the honor of a Flying Ace (although it took until 1963 for the fifth plane to be confirmed) and he was awarded a Distinguished Service Cross.
His time as a pilot in the war shape his life and, as Susan describes it, her house’s décor.  She has quite a bit of WWI memorabilia which she has periodically loaned to the squadron.
While attending the squadron’s 100th anniversary last year...
Presenter - Rev. Susan Mozena 2018-12-12 05:00:00Z 0

New Member Induction

The Club welcomed Paige Niehaus.  Paige, as everyone knows is President Gary’s wife, is also the Provost and Executive Director of the Design Center at Wayne County Community College.  Steve McMillan will be her mentor.
New Member Induction 2018-12-12 05:00:00Z 0

Article on Facebook

This was posted on Facebook...
"Families and individuals living in our affordable housing are receiving new winter coats thanks to the generosity of The Rotary Club of Grosse Pointe, Grosse Pointe Sunrise Rotary, and The Rotary Club of Detroit. The three local Rotary Clubs donated nearly 300 coats that are being distributed at our Housing offices this week. This is the second consecutive year that the Rotary Clubs have donated coats to help our tenants in need. Any leftover coats will be given away at Southwest Holiday Fest this Saturday."
Article on Facebook 2018-12-12 05:00:00Z 0

Operation Warm Update

On Thursday Grosse Pointe Rotary delivered 400+ coats to the Children's Center.  After we finish our final delivery we will have distributed 4,356 coats this year and a total of 27,156 coats over the past 7 years.
Operation Warm Update 2018-12-06 05:00:00Z 0

Grosse Pointe Rotarian in the News

Our very own Rev. Susan Mozena was the Pointer of Interest in Dec. 5th Grosse Pointe News.
Pointer of Interest: Farms woman has experience of a lifetime
Rev. Susan d’Olive Mozena
By Jody McVeigh on December 05, 2018

With pounding heart and mile-wide smile, the Rev. Susan d’Olive Mozena recently got the experience of a lifetime in the cockpit of a B-52 Stratofortress bomber.

The flight — which included a couple simulated bomb runs — was in honor of the service of Mozena’s father, 1st Lt. Charles d’Olive, a fighter pilot during World War I. But her story starts long before the Grosse Pointe Farms resident was fitted for flight.

Click here to read the full article.

Grosse Pointe Rotarian in the News 2018-12-05 05:00:00Z 0

Youth Exchange Panel

Ted Everingham moderated the discussion.   The first exchange occurred in Denmark in 1929 and there are currently 8,000 students taking part in 100 countries.  Inbound students come to our Club and outbound students are sponsored by our Club to travel abroad.  Katie Dotson was just accepted as an outbound student and will find out in January where she will be living.  Her top choice is Norway.  The Club currently has an outbound student, Anna Gleason, in Finland.
Having recently hosted a student, Jessica Keyser and Paige Niehaus (Simon) and Michelle Roberts (Sebastian) offered their perspectives.  Jessica and Michelle spoke about how their children bonded with their student and the overall adjustment of having a teenager in the house.  Paige reflected on how much she misses having Simon in her daily life and the little things that remind her of him.
Current and past Rotarians spoke of the impact of hosting a student.  John and Susan Mozena (8 students)...
Youth Exchange Panel  2018-12-05 05:00:00Z 0
The Lunch Bunch Strikes Again 2018-11-30 05:00:00Z 0

GP Rotary In The News - Because of the need

Annually, Northeast Guidance Center and the Rotary Club of Grosse Pointe raise funds to purchase new coats to meet the needs of children who receive behavioral health services at NEGC’s Eli Z. Rubin Children’s Center, as well as homeless children at the Day of Restoration Nov. 3. Distribution of coats began Oct. 15, just in time for the cold snap that hit Detroit.  Read more here.
(Pictured from left, Grosse Pointe Rotarians Ted Everingham, Bob Lucas, Paul Rentenbach and Dick Allison.)
GP Rotary In The News - Because of the need 2018-11-29 05:00:00Z 0

Presentor - Brian Peterson-Roest

Brian Peterson-Roest is the Founder of Bees in the D.
Bees in the D is a non-profit whose mission is to create a cooperative effort between residents, schools, organizations, and businesses in Detroit and southeast Michigan to contribute to both the health of honey bee colonies and the education of their importance to our environment.  It started with 2 rooftop hives and...
Presentor - Brian Peterson-Roest 2018-11-28 05:00:00Z 0

Beyond Basics 2018 Coat Drive

Beyond Basics received 408 coats from Grosse Pointe Rotary this year and hustled to get them to students before Thanksgiving. (Pictured is one of the happy recipients.) They provide them to the schools listed below, along with other services (e.g., tutoring, literacy aids, etc).  Learn more about Beyond Basics here: 
Thirkell Elementary (Detroit Public Schools)
Mumford High School (Detroit Public Schools)
Burton International School (Detroit Public Schools)
Sampson-Webber Leadership Academy (Detroit Public Schools)
Southeastern High School (Detroit Public Schools)
Central High School (Detroit Public Schools)
Westside Christian Academy (Detroit)
Durfee Elementary (DPS)
Durfee Family Literacy Center (Life Remodeled Durfee Center)
Myers Elementary (Taylor Schools)
Whitman Elementary (Pontiac Public Schools)
Pontiac Dream Center (after school program)
Beyond Basics 2018 Coat Drive 2018-11-20 05:00:00Z 0

Operation Warm Thank yous

Grosse Pointe Rotary arranged for coats to go to some kids at Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian's tutoring program, via Operation Warm. Here are a couple pictures of some very appreciative kids.  Especially on these unusually cold November days. 
Operation Warm Thank yous 2018-11-15 05:00:00Z 0

Vocational Talk - Julie Baumer

Julie is a new member who gave a presentation to us back in February.  During her presentation we learned about her personal and on going involvement with Innocence movement coalitions.  So for her vocational talk she rounded out the picture by telling us a little more about herself.  Julie was born and raised in Detroit, is a realtor with Coldwell Banker, utilizes the flexibility her job to care for her father and is enjoying Rotary.
Vocational Talk - Julie Baumer 2018-11-14 05:00:00Z 0

Presenter - Michael Spence

Michael Spence is the Policy Planner for the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments (SEMCOG). 
SEMCOG is made up of a 7 county region (  Its purpose is to support coordinated local planning with technical, data, and intergovernmental resources.  Its plans help improve the quality of the region’s environmental resources, make the transportation system safer and more efficient, revitalize communities, and encourage economic development.  SEMCOG coordinates local projects and its source of funding is from the federal and state governments that help pay for these projects.
Mr. Spence focused on two projects: (1) Walk, Bike, Drive Safe which educates the public and provides traffic accident data to its membership.  (2) Parkfinder App which can be downloaded to search our 2,600 parks for activities on land and water trails. 
Presenter - Michael Spence 2018-11-14 05:00:00Z 0

Rotarians Abroad - The Mozenas in Australia

Susan and John Mozena started their day (Friday) at the Rotary Club of Sydney Cove where they had breakfast on a cruise boat moored in the harbor at Round Quay, with the bridge and the opera house in view. 
Susan said in an email, "Photo is the club president (long blond hair), a new member and her sponsor, Rotary visitors from Ghana, today’s speaker, and a new Paul Harris Fellow. Great meeting, neat club, beautiful setting. Exchanged flags, bringing theirs back to give our club." John Mozena is hidden in the back, 5th from the right and Susan Mozena is 3rd from the right.
Rotarians Abroad - The Mozenas in Australia 2018-11-09 05:00:00Z 0

Megan Owens

Megan Owens is the Executive Director of Transportation Riders United (TRU).
TRU is a nonprofit dedicated to improving public transit throughout the greater Detroit region through education, engagement, and advocacy.  It is an advisor to the Regional Transit Authority. 
Megan Owens 2018-11-07 05:00:00Z 0

Vocational Talk - Doris Neal

Doris is a lawyer who covers all of the basics of law with her husband, Vince Van-Tiem.  She met Vince on a cruise and they were married by his father, a 36th District Court Judge.  Doris is also a certified scuba diver.
Vocational Talk - Doris Neal 2018-11-07 05:00:00Z 0

Baker College

Our presenters on Oct 24th were Patty Kaufman, Baker College President, and Karen Bratus, DDS, VP of Academic Affairs.  Since 1911, the mission of Baker College is to provide quality higher education and training which enable graduates to be successful throughout challenging and rewarding careers.  It offers 7 fields of study at 9 campuses and online.  Last year, 4,579 students graduated from their programs.
Baker College 2018-10-24 04:00:00Z 0

Vocational Service Award

At our Oct 24th meeting we presented one of our annual Vocational Service Awards.  The Vocational Service Awards are presented to deserving individuals and companies, or organizations who put service above self and who have implemented policies, demonstrated compassion and/or other exemplary treatment of employees, customers, or the public they serve. The award is presented twice a year. The spring recipient is an individual and the fall recipient is a company or organization.  This years organization recipient were the three little league programs in the Grosse Pointes.  Accepting the award for each organization and pictured with Gary are Scott Lupo (GPFC), Andrew Harr (GPP), and Paul Summers (GPWS).
Vocational Service Award 2018-10-24 04:00:00Z 0

Future outbound exchange student


We were please to have as our guests Katie Dotson, our future outbound exchange student, and her grandfather, John Getz. (Pictured: John Getz, Katie Dotson and Bill Scott)

Future outbound exchange student 2018-10-24 04:00:00Z 0

Vocational Talk - Vince VanTiem

Vince VanTiem. Vince is a lawyer who works with his wife, Doris.  He is a former eagle scout, a “bad” drawer on any piece of paper, and a stand-up comedian/screen writer who is part of comedy troupes.
Vocational Talk - Vince VanTiem 2018-10-24 04:00:00Z 0

Euchre Night

When you play euchre with Rotarians, you enjoy great fellowship and everyone leaves a winner!
Euchre Night 2018-10-17 04:00:00Z 0

John McElroy

John McElroy is the host of the television program Autoline, which covers all aspects of the automotive industry. 
His subject was autonomous vehicles & mobility and he highlighted that 87% of the public fears self-driving cars.  GM & Google’s work in the field are ahead of others and new electric vehicles will be designed for 1 million miles service life (traditional cars --100-150k miles).  New mobility options are open to all customer segments which mean more miles traveled and more cars needed.  By 2040, GM & Ford anticipate lower demands for traditional vehicles so the industry needs to get the public onboard with electric vehicles and the ‘start-up’ culture.
John McElroy 2018-10-17 04:00:00Z 0

Vocational Talk - Irena Politano

Irena Politano, born in Serbia, came to U.S. as an exchange student.  She moved with her attorney husband to Grosse Pointe and are Fred Ollison’s neighbors.  She formed a new family conservator company, serving as family mediator and Guardian Ad Litem for the St. Clair County courts.
Vocational Talk - Irena Politano 2018-10-17 04:00:00Z 0

Vocational Talk - Heather Mayernik

One of our newest members, Heather Mayernik is a professor at Macomb Community College where she works with students least likely to succeed.  Her goal is to improve a student’s course completion and to help each meet his/her goals.  She also teaches teachers at Oakland U.
Vocational Talk - Heather Mayernik  2018-10-10 04:00:00Z 0

Anne Braise

This weeks presenter was Anne Braise, the Executive Director of the Clinton River Watershed Council. 
The CRWC’s mission is to protect, enhance, and celebrate the Clinton River, its watershed, and Lake St. Clair.  It was formed in 1972 and covers 760 square miles, 4 counties, and 1.5 million people and its membership includes individuals, businesses, local governments, and community organizations. 
To fulfill its mission, the CRWC hosts numerous clean-up events, participates in preservation and restoration projects, and conducts presentations and educational workshops.  It also leverages the river’s assets by promoting recreation and access.  To learn more, please visit
Anne Braise 2018-10-10 04:00:00Z 0

Operation Warm spreads the heat in and around Grosse Pointe

Great article in the Grosse Pointe News about Operation Warm. This is one of Grosse Pointe Rotary's signature projects. Follow this link for the complete article.
Operation Warm spreads the heat in and around Grosse Pointe 2018-10-04 04:00:00Z 0

GP Rotary in the News

The Grosse Pointe news has a section where they publish articles from the past.  This clip shows a 1943 article spotlighting a GP Rotary initiative. 
GP Rotary in the News 2018-10-04 04:00:00Z 0

New Members

New Red Badges were present to three new members today. Heather Mayernik, Doris Neal-Van Tiem and Vincent Van Tiem.  Welcome new Rotarians. 
(Pictured: Elizabeth Vogel, Heather Mayernik, Gary Niehaus, Doris Neal-Van Tiem, Vincent Van Tiem and Dean Valente)
New Members 2018-10-03 04:00:00Z 0

Life Remodeled Project

Forty-five Grosse Pointers, primarily from Grosse Pointe Memorial Church and Grosse Pointe Rotary, spent the better part of a day on Oct. 3 helping Life Remodeled in the neighborhood surrounding the Detroit’s Central High School and Durfee Elementary-Middle School.  Equipped with lawn mowers, weed wackers, loppers, and gloved hands, the team cleaned out over-grown fields and home flowerbeds to make the area safer for children to walk to school.  It has been 51 years since the 1967 Detroit uprising and the neighborhood surrounding these two schools is where it all began.  Based on the need and the vision of this community, Life Remodeled, along with their partners, broke their “one year per area” tradition and committed four years to this neighborhood.  (
Life Remodeled Project 2018-10-03 04:00:00Z 0

Michigan Opera Theatre

Through the MOT’s Department of Education and Community Programs, we were entertained by Mezzo Soprano Katherine DeYoung and Soprano Angela Theis in the War Memorial library.  They were accompanied by pianist Tessa Hartle and Arthur White, the Director of External Affairs.  Before performing each song (two by each singer), Mr. White provided a brief summary of the opera of the song’s origin, the character singing it, and the circumstances surrounding it.
Michigan Opera Theatre 2018-10-03 04:00:00Z 0

Rebecca Fannon

Rebecca Fannon is the Community Relations Director for the GP Public Schools.
Mrs. Fannon talked about the school district’s bond proposal that will be up for a vote on November 6th.  The proposal is designed to (1) enhance student safety and school security, (2) make infrastructure improvements, and (3) upgrade technology infrastructure.  The idea is to keep students “safe” through new locks and entrances; “warm” with new boilers and HVAC (Richard School still has the original from 1928); “dry” through new roofs, windows, and masonry; and “connected” with updated wiring and cabling.
Rebecca Fannon 2018-09-26 04:00:00Z 0

Grosse Pointe Library Book Sale Clean-up

Periodically, Friends of the Grosse Pointe Public Library has a Used Book Sale to raise money and make room for new books.  When the sale is over the leftover books are donated to Good Will.  That's when Grosse Point Rotary steps in.  Along with the help of Grosse Pointe Interact Club members, we helped to move an estimated 14,000 books (5.5 tons) from the Ewald Branch to the Good Will truck.  A heavy job made light due to the many helping hands. (Pictured: Mark Books, Murray Davis, Philip MacKethan, Mark Cory Lee Johnson, Adam Johnson, Dean Valente, Molly Marrocco)
Grosse Pointe Library Book Sale Clean-up 2018-09-22 04:00:00Z 0

Defer Elementary Eco-Friendly Gardening

Defer Elementary School has an eco-friendly gardening and weeding project where no pesticide or herbicide treatments are put in the ground.  So once again a few tough Rotarians showed up with their gloves and tools and helped support the school by pulling weeds. (Pictured: Judy Masserang, Richard Allison, Theodore Everingham)
Defer Elementary Eco-Friendly Gardening 2018-09-22 04:00:00Z 0

Farewell to friends

John Maliszewski (IPP) and his wife Carrie are moving to Fort Collins, CO to be closer to family.  They will be greatly missed and so we had to throw them a little farewell party. You can find the pictures here.
Farewell to friends 2018-09-21 04:00:00Z 0

Beth Vernon

Beth Vernon, Director of the GP Library Foundation.  
Ms. Vernon’s presentation started with references in the NY Times and Rotarian Magazine about the importance of public libraries.  If not already known, our Club started the tool collection, where residents can check out tools for whatever chores they may have. 
The Grosse Pointe Library Foundation (GPLF) was founded in 
2004.  Its mission is to strengthen, 

support, and advocate for a superior free public library system.  It is dedicated to raising and responsibly administering private donor funding to enhance services and ensure the long-term financial stability of the Grosse Pointe Public Library.  Funds have been used to  build/renovate/preserve Ewald in 2005, Woods in 2006, and Central in 2013.  
Beth Vernon 2018-09-19 04:00:00Z 0

Northeast Guidance Center Farm Stand

Grosse Pointe Rotarians did not mind getting there hands dirty as they harvest the bounty at an urban garden ran by Northeast Guidance Center. The garden is located on the corner of Charlevoix Street and Anderdon Street and sells freshly picked organically grown vegetables to locals once a week. (Pictured: George McMullen, Molly Marrocco, Philip MacKethan)
Northeast Guidance Center Farm Stand 2018-09-19 04:00:00Z 0
Operation Warm 2018-09-18 04:00:00Z 0

Paul Sincock District 6400 Governor

Paul Sincock is the Rotary Governor of District 6400.  Long a Rotary member in Plymouth, MI, with multiple Paul Harris Fellow awards, Paul’s remarks landed firmly on the fact that to sustain your Club today we must all keep evolving through change as the only way to engage current and recruit new members.
Consistent with the goals of RI’s President Barry Rassin:
-Support and strengthen your club focus.
- Focus and increase humanitarian service.- Enhance public image and awareness by using traditional and social media channels to tell your story and build your relevance in the community.
Paul Sincock District 6400 Governor 2018-09-12 04:00:00Z 0

2018 Cruise for a Cause

Another successful Cruise for a Cause party.  This was our 5th annual fundraising cruise on the yacht INFINITY to raise money for our scholarships that we give out each year. If you would like to help by donating to our Foundation, please click here.
More pictures of the party can be found by clicking here.
2018 Cruise for a Cause 2018-09-06 04:00:00Z 0

GP Farms Foundation

Jeffrey Huebner and Dan Hughes spoke at our September 5th meeting about the Grosse Pointe Farms Foundation.
The Foundation was formed in the early 1980s and has raised over $2 million towards 20 small and large projects.  They have included the Dog Park and the Kerby Field gazebo   Future projects will focus on the Farms Pier.  As a way to show off the Pier to all of GP, the Foundation is hosting its 11th Concours D’Elegance from Noon to 3:00 PM on 9/30.  195 unique, classic, and vintage GP owned cars will be showcased.
GP Farms Foundation  2018-09-05 04:00:00Z 0

Sean Scholthoefer

Sean Scholthoefer is the current Grosse Pointe Yacht Club Commodore.  The GPYC was founded in 1914.  At first, there was just a harbor at the foot of Vernier Rd. that was constructed by Grosse Pointe Shores along with its municipal building in 1915.  Construction of the current clubhouse building didn’t take place until 1927 and was completed in 1929, months before the start of the Great Depression.  The total cost was $1 million ($12 million today).
Sean Scholthoefer 2018-08-29 04:00:00Z 0

Crossroads Lunch Program

Another successful day at Crossroads. More than 95 people were served. Kudos to our selfless Rotarians and Chef Dave. With Mike Carmody, Dean Valente, Dave Colton, Diane Stickler, Bob Lucas and Judy Masserang
Crossroads Lunch Program 2018-08-28 04:00:00Z 0