Welcome to the Elkhart Rotary Club Meeting on July 1, 2019; Today our new 2019-2020 Club President Candy Yoder presided over her first meeting of the new year and we welcomed our District 6540 Governor Alfred Brothers, Jr., to give us an update on the state of the district and share plans and initiatives for this coming 2019-2020 Rotary year.

Our NEW 2019-2020 Club President Candy Yoder opened the meeting introducing the new Rotary International President Mark Maloney's theme for this year: "Rotary Connects the World" along with our 2019-2020 flag with the logo seen here. This year's theme asks Rotarians to strengthen the many ways that Rotary Connects the World, building the connections that allow talented, thoughtful, and generous people to unite and take meaningful action through Rotary service.

Candy introduced new member Steve Thalheimer who shared meaningful words reminding us of the sacrifices made by our founding fathers that led to our country's independence, led the Pledge of Allegiance, and Four Way Test.

Thanks to our greeters today: Irwin Larrier, Don Stohler, and Todd Stone, who also introduced today's guests: Visiting Rotarians: Dick Pfeil and Steve Neeser, both from the South Bend Rotary Club; Guests of Rotarians included: Dave Osza (Deb Osza), Arvis Dawson (Chuck Grodnik), and Paul Gardner (Tony Warning). Welcome to ALL guests, we hope you can all join us again some other time!

Candy Yoder and Sherm Hansen presented awards of thanks to outgoing board members who had completed their term in June, including: Dave Dygart, Todd Stone, Deb Hall, and Ann McCuistion, pictured here. She also presented a special plaque of thanks and recognition to Peter Norton our immediate past President. Thanks to all who serve on our Board of Directors providing leadership for the club!

Announcements for July 1:

  • ***SAVE THE DATE*** reminder from Mick Faloon: October 4, Dionne Warwick Concert at the Lerner! Elkhart Rotary will have a block of tickets available for the Friday, October 4, 7:30 p.m. concert featuring Dionne Warwick, a six-time Grammy Award-winning music legend who has earned more than 75 charted hit songs and sold over 100 million records. To reserve your tickets, email Julie Cotton at julie@nextlevelimprov.com; tickets are limited to 30, with 20 already spoken for at this meeting date - - they're going fast! We also plan to have a pre-concert gathering (details to follow). Each ticket for the concert will be approximately $65, including handling fees and taxes. Whatever is planned prior to the concert will be at additional cost. Each Elkhart Rotary member is limited to 2 tickets, unless additional tickets are available after the initial sign up. The Elkhart Rotary ticket block is located on the right side of the main floor right aisle, rows R, S, and T.
  • Matt Lentsch shared a club honor presented by the Salvation Army of Elkhart at a recent event recognizing our club's efforts and support of the Salvation Army. Matt and then president-elect Candy attended the event on behalf of the Elkhart Rotary Club. Thanks to ALL of our club members who provide support through our club's fundraising efforts by ringing bells during the holidays, by volunteering at Thanksgiving dinner at the Matterhonr, or through your contributions of fines and/or donations around the holidays. Everyone plays a part!
  • Dave Gunn, chair of the Caring Committee recognized all members of the committee by asking them to stand, reminding club members that if they know of anyone associated with the club who could use some help or an uplifting note, to contact one of the committee members. 
  • Tom Shoff invited club members to attend the next Elkhart River Queen event, hosting a Flotilla Cruise on Thursday, July 4th. The Elkhart River Queen will sail up stream to the Six Span Bridge where she will start and lead the flotilla downstream to Martin's landing where prizes for the best decorated boats will be awarded. Adults 21 & Older ONLY. Purchase tickets HERE or visit http://www.savethequeen.org/ for more information. Tickets are $50 per person food w/cash bar; Boarding starts at 10:00am will sail at 11:00am and return to dock between 2:30pm and 3:00pm. Join the fun!
We inducted a new member today, Elizabeth "Lizzie" Sheets. Thanks to Aileac Deagan for conducting the induction today. 
Lizzie gave a quick introduction of herself at the podium. She is the new Program Facilitator for Startup Moxie Elkhart County. She has an entrepreneurial background, having worked most recently at Patrick Industries as a Product Manager. She also has experience in sales and event coordination, and coached women's basketball at IUSB. She and her family live in Goshen, Indiana. Lizzie is a high-energy, self-motivated person with great collaboration and communication skills, which will serve her well in her position with Startup Moxie. Her passion for helping students and her community is clear and the Elkhart Rotary Club is thrilled to have her among our membership. Welcome to the Elkhart Rotary Club, Lizzie!
Today's Sergeant was Meghann Sullivan-Redding, who took a non-traditional approach to today's fundraising; choosing to recognize all club members who serve on other boards in/around Elkhart and Elkhart County. She worked the room and asked each member to say what board they served on and WHY they enjoyed what they did. We're so proud to have so many helpful, thoughtful, and community-minded citizens in our Club! And for the service today, everyone was asked to put in their max fine. Great job FUNdraising today, Meghann! Rotary fines are collected weekly and are pooled into a fund throughout the year. In the spring more than $10,000 is distributed as grants to not for profit organizations around our county. Thanks, All, for your contributions!
Terri Rickel, club member and Assistant District Governor for our District 6540 introduced today's speaker, NEW District Governor Al Brothers, Jr.  
Terri provided Al's bio before turning it over him for his presentation:

Alfred Brothers Jr. was born and raised in Boston Massachusetts. He is a graduate of Boston Latin School, the oldest Public High School in the United States, and Boston University College of Engineering, graduating in 1964 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Aeronautical Engineering. Upon graduation, he was then commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force, and assigned to pilot training at Williams AFB, Arizona where he graduated in 1965. His Air Force career spanned 22 years as a bomber and fighter pilot, an engineering branch chief at the Air Force Foreign Technology Division (Technical Intelligence) and commander of an Air Force ROTC Detachment at Wright State University Dayton Ohio. He had two tours in Vietnam first flying B-52 Bombers and then flying a B-57G test aircraft in combat which lead to an assignment in the then new FB-111A fighter aircraft. He amassed 155 combat missions in those two tours and earned the Distinguished Flying Cross, Multiple Air Metals, and Chief of Chaplain Awards.
During his Air Force career, he earned Masters Degrees in Public Administration and in Personnel Management. He graduated from the Air War College and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces.  All of those educational experiences served him well in both his military career and civilian career. After retiring from the USAF in 1986, Al joined the Magnavox Company now Raytheon as a project engineer in the Electronic Warfare Division, and was quickly promoted to program manager leading various research and development programs for our military services in Electronic Warfare, Space Electronic and Research, and Military Communications. While at Raytheon he earned his PhD in Business Administartion. Al retired from Raytheon in 2011. At Wright State University, as the AFROTC Commander he taught classes in Military History, Military Management and Military Leadership. As a civilian he was an adjunct Professor of Engineering at Indiana Institute of Technology lecturing in fluid mechanics and dynamics. He has published papers in the areas of Electronic Warfare and Communications and contributed to research studies on foreign military reconnaissance and communications spacecraft, and space power systems.

Al joined Rotary in 1987 after being asked by a fellow senior staff member at Magnavox.  He served as president of the Anthony Wayne Club in 2011-2012. He is a multiple Paul Harris Fellow, Paul Harris Society member, and served as an Assistant Governor for the Berne, Bluffton, Columbia City and Decatur clubs.  Al and his wife, Sandi, attended the Rotary International Convention in New Orleans, Atlanta and Toronto. He has been an assistant sergeant at many of our Rotary 6540 District conventions and Great Lakes PETS Rotary training sessions in Michigan. He is also a graduate of the Rotary Leadership Training Institute. He served on the 2017-2018 Rotary District 6540 Foundation Dinner Committee and is the co-chair of the 2018-2019 Rotary District 6540 Foundation Dinner Committee. 

He has been very involved in his local community since leaving the Air Force. He serves currently on the Anthony Wayne Area Council Boy Scouts of America Board, Indiana United Methodist Church Conference Trustee Board as Chair, member and prior board chair of Science Central, a hands-on science center, and on the board of PBS-39 Public Television having served as board chair in 2008. Al received the Silver Antelope Award from the BSA, the second highest adult scouting award, and is an Eagle Scout. He has presented numerous lectures on genealogy, US military history, and black baseball history in Fort Wayne, and for the Quest Club of Fort Wayne presenting papers on  “The History of China”, “Who were the Melungeons of the US South?”,  “The Future of Fuel Cell Technology for Automobiles”, and “The Wit and Humor of Red Skelton”.

After taking the mic, Al first introduced his wife Sandy and thanked the club for having him today. He shared many of the initiatives he has in mind for our district, many echoing the RI President Mark Maloney's initiatives but at a district scale, including how we need to better-address Millennials when recruiting and for planning community programs, for instance inviting/recruiting in groups, not just individuals, and making sure to meet our future members where they are. Rotary leadership is calling on leaders to expand connections to their communities and to embrace innovative membership models. The first emphasis is to grow Rotary — to grow our service, to grow the impact of our projects, but most importantly, to grow our membership so that we can achieve more. Rotary allows us to connect with each other, in deep and meaningful ways, across our differences; it connects us to people we would never otherwise have met, who are more like us than we ever could have known. It connects us to our communities, to professional opportunities, and to the people who need our help. We're urged to consider alternative meeting experiences and service opportunities to make it easier for busy professionals and people with many family obligations to serve in leadership roles. Al Brothers' district theme for this year is "Think Differently." 
Thanks, Al, for an informative program!
To learn more about our district visit http://www.rotary6540.org/
About Rotary:
Rotary is a global network of 1.2 million neighbors, friends, community leaders, and problem-solvers who see a world where people unite and act to create lasting change – across the globe, in our local communities, and in ourselves. The Elkhart Rotary Club was founded in 1917 and serves its community through volunteerism, providing grants to not-for-profit organizations, sponsoring, and participating in service projects such as ringing bells for the Salvation Army, roadside trash collection, and are the originators and sustainers of Wellfield Botanic Gardens. Elkhart Rotary Club’s membership consists of approximately 150 dedicated individuals from various professional backgrounds and diverse interests. Membership in the Elkhart Rotary Club is by invitation. We welcome guests to attend any of our meetings and hear from our great lineup of weekly presenters.
For more information on the Elkhart Rotary Club, visit elkhartrotary.org or email elkhartnoonrotary@gmail.com. Like and follow us on Facebook at www.facebook/ElkhartRotaryClub to stay current on meetings, upcoming events or speakers, and initiatives in the community.
Upcoming Meetings and Programs:
  • July 8: Dave Dufour - Executive Director of Elkhart Civic Theater
  • July 15: John Hill and Wayne Stubbs - Executive Director and Board President - Elkhart County Symphony Association
  • July 22: Irwin Larrier, Executive Director - Center for Community Justice
  • July 29: DOUBLE FEATURE Day! Interact Club Members present their adventure to Nosara, Costa Rica and Rotary Peace Fellows Sarah and Jonathan Nahar share their experieinces.
Join us for our next meeting:
All meetings are at noon on Mondays at the Matterhorn Banquet and Conference Center, 2041 Cassopolis St. in Elkhart IN, 46514. In months that include a FIFTH Monday, the Elkhart Rotary Club holds an alternative meeting or activity.