Club Wrap Up for 2016-2017

Posted by on Tuesday, June 20th, 2017 in Blog

Reported by Leslie Bagby

President Dale Lowe called the meeting to order right at noon. Michele Heyman led the pledges and Ronney Reynolds gave the invocation. Sylvia Holmes led us in reciting the “FOUR WAY TEST”, Pauline Gubbels was our greeter at the top of the stairs and David Palmer checked-in and introduced our visitors and guests.

President Dale introduced two new members, Kevin Hull (sponsored by Ron Mullen) and Kuo “Allen” Yang (sponsored by Dale Lowe). Welcome gentlemen!

Michael Portman led the Thank Goodness Basket, but first Jessy Ingersoll drew Dr. Pat Beckham’s name for a Paul Harris Fellowship. Congratulations, Dr. Beckham! We then heard good news from: Bill Baker, Dick Brown, Ellen Hunt, Pauline Gubbels, Ronney Reynolds, Tom Howard and Gaines Bagby.

President Dale gave a Rotary “year in review.” He set out with several goals in mind and accomplished all of them with great success.

  1. 100% Paul Harris Fellow club
  2. 75% weekly attendance
  3. Increasing participation of Rotarians in leadership and projects:
  • 80 members in leadership roles
  • 48 lunch programs
  • 24 breakfast clusters
  • 10 wine tastings
  • 12 Mastermind meetings

Financially, this was banner year for Annual Ask, with our club members pledging $183,651. We currently have over $1.5 million in the corpus of the Austin Rotary Club Foundation.

Next, each of the club VPs reported on the year’s events and successes. Vice President of Club Service, Ann Graham, reported on her busy, “nuts and bolts” committee chairs that keep the Rotary wheels turning. These included: Communications, Hospitality, Programs, Rotary Reminder reporters and photographers as well as Social Committee.

Mary Reynolds, Community Service Vice President, reported on her fabulous committees that include: Literacy, EAFK, the Helping Hand Home for Children, BookSpring, Operation Vacation and the Scholarship Committee that selected students to receive more than $35,000 for higher education.

Global Service Vice President, Adam Borger, gave us a picture of the many ways our club is making a difference outside the U.S. The Youth Exchange (Perth, Australia), Peace Fellows, and Stop Hunger Now (22,000 meals provided) involved many club members. The Global Grants chair, Ellen Hunt, gave an update on several projects including the Iraqi Children’s Foundation and the El Salvador grant for training local plastic surgeons for much needed cleft lip and palate surgeries.

Membership has been very busy recruiting and engaging our members. President Dale came very close to his goal with 27 new members joining Rotary this year. Vice President Dr. Michael Abelson noted that the Red Badge committee has worked to update and streamline the process for our new members.

Tom Howard, Vice President of Vocational Service, noted that his committee was all about taking a “vacation” from the regular Rotary meetings. Members can attend morning breakfast cluster meetings, the Mastermind group, Happy Hours or semi-annual clusters. Over 40 Rotarians came out to help with the 35th Camp Enterprise to help teach 124 students from 28 area high schools how to start a business.

To cap off the meeting, Judge Lee Yeakel installed the 2017-18 officers. The new leadership of the Rotary Club of Austin pledged “To do their very best and then…. just a little bit more.”

Incoming Officers:
Sara Pantin (President, 2017-2018)
Julia Benkoski (President Elect, 2018-2019)
Harold Ingersoll (Treasurer, 2017-2018)
Ann Graham (The Rotary Foundation Chair, 2017-2018)
Rich Fikani (Sergeant-at-Arms, 2017-2018)

Incoming Vice Presidents:
Michael Abelson (Club Service VP)
Mary Reynolds (Community Service VP)
Laraine Lasdon (Global Service VP)
Mark Johnson (Membership Service VP)
Leslie Bagby (Vocational Service VP)

Incoming Board of Directors:
Tillery Castillo
Harold Ingersoll

Returning Board of Directors:
Allison Allen
Bill Koen

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