Happy Holidays Rotarians

Johns Article header
It is that time of year when we should be eternally thankful for our families and friends along with the blessings and beauty we enjoy all year long.  Please know that I consider all in District 5510 My Rotary Family.

Right now I am in Virginia with my daughter’s family – especially my 8-month-old grandson.  We are watching the snow come down in big and really big fluffy flakes. We are thankful to be warm and cozy and looking forward to a big turkey day with family and friends.

Please keep our service men and women in your thoughts and prayers as they are the ones for whom we should be ever thankful.  They keep us safe and allow us to enjoy the freedoms we have every day while they keep watch.

This past week I crossed off one of my bucket list items as I returned to my original Rotary Club – the Rotary Club of Blackstone, Virginia.  They are the ones who created this monster.  They are still a vibrant club.

While there I had the wonderful experience of thanking a gentleman for what he did for my family 36 years ago. He is 93 years old and suffers from Parkinson’s.  He was a radio announcer back then and simply asked his audience to help us find our dog.  Within a few hours we had a call and our dog was back with us although he had traveled several miles away.  I was happy to thank this gentleman in person for what he did for my family. He was unable to speak, but the twinkle in his eye told me he understood. For that I have a deeper feeling of thankfulness.

I hope each of you have similar reasons to be thankful now and in the future.


Membership Growth

Please note the operative word is growth, but don’t forget about retention. I am so pleased to report to you that, as of today, we have 97 new members in our district.  This is indicative of the hard work by Club Presidents, Membership Chairs and Assistant Governors.  We are a growing district. This fact is recognized by our Zone and by RI.

Keep your members engaged and get your new members involved – heck put them together and watch them take off.

December is critical to reporting of membership activity.  Rotary International will base the next dues invoice on the number of members in each club as of the end of December. Be sure to get your new members listed and update any changes to your club’s member status as soon as possible.  If you are unsure about a member, ask them. If a member is listed at the end of December, you will be invoiced for them in January.  And remember, your District 5510 dues will be based on this same number of members.


The Rotary Foundation

EREY Tracker Nov 14

Lots of folks are busy doing year-end tax preparations.  Don’t forget The Rotary Foundation during this time of the year.  The chart below shows the percentage of Rotarians who have already donated to TRF this year.  Let’s get to work on growing our percentage and goal for giving this Rotary year.

Remember, one of the criteria for the District Achievement Award is for clubs to be above 30% of their Annual Fund goal by the end of December 2014.  As of today we are at 26% of our goal for the district. In reviewing the EREY reports for all clubs, it was noted that 178 Rotarians have yet to have their contributions recorded.  It should be noted that many of these are our new members and I am confident clubs will be submitting these donations soon to reach the 30% mark.


Rotary Youth Exchange

Switching gears now, I want to keep the burner turned up on support to our Youth Exchange program.  In a few weeks we will be interviewing 14 students who have applied for the Rotary Exchange program for the next school year.

Key to sending students out on this highly desirable program is the ability of our district to host an equal number of students during the same school year.  Currently, we have the ability to host 8 students here.  This is based on having the initial and second families already lined up.  Should any of these drop out, it may jeopardize a potential in-bound and also an out-bound from here.  Host families DO NOT have to be Rotarians. So if, you or someone you know, would like to be a host family, please contact Bill Beamish and ask about being a host.  It is a WIN-WIN program for both parties.


Rotary Youth Leadership Awards – Scholarships

Here is an interesting discovery that I heard at the Interact Fall Leadership Conference.

First of all, the Credit for Contributions made or fees paid to Public Schools is claimed on AZ Form 322.  The Credit for Contributions to Charities that Provide Assistance to the Working Poor is claimed on AZ Form 321.  (The Rotary Vocational Fund of Arizona is just such an entity)  They are two separate and mutually exclusive tax credits.  A taxpayer can claim both credits.

The Public Schools contribution credit (Form 322) can be a little complicated, as was noted in our discussion with the Interact Advisers.

It has not been ascertained that all of the school districts in Arizona have jumped through all of the required hoops to be able to qualify their Interact Clubs to receive contributions made to the school for those clubs, and for those Interact Clubs to be able to award RYLA scholarships to students.  However, most of the schools are receiving funds designated for Interact Clubs and are putting them in a school account for Interact’s use.  Some Interact Clubs have been funding their RYLA scholarships in this way, using the tax credit contributions to the school for Interact.

One of our Rotarian Advisers at the FLC and to an Interact Club, is also a longtime school board member. She was correct in stating that a school district is supposed to be charging a fee to participate in the extracurricular activities that would be covered under this tax credit.  Some School Districts charge an annual $10 activity fee that covers participation in athletics, band, drama, and any of the recognized clubs on campus.  To become a member of Interact, a student should have paid the $10 activity fee to the school.

There has been some confusion in the schools over what the tax credit funds can be used for.  However, some of the top Arizona Dept. of Revenue officials agree with the interpretation that the funds contributed to a school for Interact can be used for any activities that are consistent with the purpose for which the club or activity exists.  The Standard Interact Constitution is pretty clear that sending students to RYLA for leadership and character training is consistent with the purposes for which Interact exists.  Here is a synopsis of the Guidelines:


An individual may claim a nonrefundable tax credit for making cash contributions or for certain fees paid to a public school located in Arizona for the support of extracurricular activities or character education programs. The credit is equal to the amount of fees paid or cash contributions, not to exceed $400 for married filing joint filers and $200 for all other filing statuses. The following information is intended to assist public schools in understanding their statutory requirements pertaining to ECA tax credit monies.

The official Guidelines for the Public Schools Extracurricular Activity (ECA) Tax Credit issued by the Arizona Department of Revenue has been posted on our district website under resources.  If you need more information, please contact John Wintersteen or Howard Adams.



Rotary Club of Scottsdale assists students with their Dream Profession

Mentor Student
Youth Mentoring is a youth program offered by Rotary Club of Scottsdale. The program assists high school students prepare for a job, career, or education. The program is designed to help students who are planning to immediately enter the job market, enter a trade or vocational school, or enroll in a college or university after high school. 90% of graduating students do not have a mentor. Many students have never met a professional in their field of planned post high school training or education. Rotary has a wide variety of career choices represented in its membership. Upon being accepted into the program, Rotary will seek members or other
professionals who wish to mentor the student and are willing spend one hour being interviewed by the student. The student will be invited to attend a Rotary meeting with their mentor. High school students wishing to apply for the program or to learn more about it are invited to email youthmentor@scottsdalerotary.org.

Tony Martino, CEO Select Specialty Hospital – Downtown Phoenix and Scottsdale Campuses and the Club’s Youth Mentoring Program Chair recently arranged a mentoring session with Mehek Mohan, Senior at Scottsdale’s Desert Mountain High School. Ms. Mohan is interested in Biomedical Engineering with an emphasis on stem cell research/cancer research. Ms. Mohan’s mentor is Roger Johnson, PhD Biomedical Engineer, Director of Strategic Initiatives, ASU’s Biodesign Institute, which forms partnerships with hospitals, companies, other universities and U.S. and foreign government entities to perform biomedical & environmental research and development.

14th Annual Mexican American Friendship Conference

Arizona Rotarians from Districts 5490 & 5510 joined our partners from Cuernavaca and Puebla, Mexico the end of
October in Cuernavaca, for our 14th Annual Mexican American Friendship Conference. Almost $300,000.00 in Rotary
Foundation Global Grants were funded at the conference and as you can see from the photos, a great time was had by

Mex Exch 3







Please note the 3 projects D5510 Clubs and District 5510 are supporting:

Equipment for blind and deaf schools to interpret books in the state of Morales
International Partner: Tempe Downtown Rotary Club

Repair, replace and connect open sewer line to city lines
International Partner: Scottsdale North and Phoenix East Rotary Clubs

New Hope Project -purchase of early detection cancer equipment for children’s cancer hospital.
International Partner: Tempe South Rotary Club

It’s always a pleasure to do good in the world!

Rotary Club of Scottsdale recreates history

PH Meeting

The Rotary Club of Scottsdale holds two Paul Harris Days each year at multiple meeting sites. Meetings are held – one in the fall and one in the spring. This day is an excellent opportunity for club members to learn more about each other by gathering in small groups, in member’s offices or other locations, just as our founders (including Paul Harris, pictured on the white board) did a century ago. “Rotating” between member’s offices is actually how the name Rotary was established.

Pictured: Rotary Club of Scottsdale members meeting hosted by member, Dr. Jan Gehler, President – Scottsdale Community College.

Polio eradication in Pakistan – a new threat exists


Only collective efforts by governments, politicians and the people can make a success. If a single child remains infected, children all over the world are at risk of contracting polio.

Please follow the below link to watch  “Every Last Child” a Documentary on how Polio was fought in Peshawar by PTI Government.


Membership is Growing – Keep the Fire Burning

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WOW!!!  As of the end of October 27 of 37 clubs have inducted new Rotarians bringing our growth to 83 new members since 1 July. For those club yet to induct a new member, you have help that i just a phone call away.  Call me or call PDG Abe Feder – we are ready to help you find new ways to locate and bring new members to your clubs. Press the flesh and burn some shoe leather; you hold the key to new members.  I am hoping we hit 100 new members by the end of December.  Let’s Light Up Rotary in District 5510.

Congratulations to the Sun Lakes, White Mountain and Tempe South Rotary Clubs for leading the way with 7, 6,and 5 new members respectively.  Remember, a net growth of 1 new member is worth 15 points toward your clubs District Achievement Award status.

For club Presidents and Secretaries, it is imperative that you enter new members in the DaCdb profile for your club in a timely and accurate manner.  This will become even more important as 2015 is fast approaching.  Look for more information on this from me real soon.

Polio Update

Polio this week as of 22 October 2014

  • World Polio Week, starting on 23 October, provides an opportunity to recognize the progress made towards the global eradication of polio in 2014. This year is the first year with South East Asia certified as polio-free.
  • The Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper was awarded Rotary International’s Polio Eradication Champion Award on 18 October in recognition of his efforts to achieve a polio free world. Canada has been a long standing supporter of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative since 1988.
  • Pakistan has reached 210 cases of paralysis caused by wild poliovirus in 2014. This is the highest number of cases on record by October in any year, and accounts for more than 85% of all cases worldwide.


Wild Poliovirus (WPV) cases

Total cases Year-to-date 2014 Year-to-date 2013 Total in 2013
Globally 247 298 416
- in endemic countries 228 103 160
- in non-endemic countries 19 195 256

Read more

Restoring Health & Hope in Rwanda

Kigali Rotary Leaders

Overview Africa Health New Horizons

Mission is:

  1. To assist in the design and the building of healthcare facilities, the provision of medical equipment, medical technology, and training in up-to-date medical skills and knowledge.
  2. To develop and facilitate sustainable training in healthcare professionals in rural areas by collaborating and partnering with both local and international educational institutions and individual healthcare professionals.
  3. To support and facilitate local community’s Global Health initiatives geared to improve their health and wellness as a whole.


Overview Project C.U.R.E.

Mission is to restore health and hope by delivering medical supplies and services according to the imperative needs of the world. Operating on 1.6% administrative overhead, Project C.U.R.E. earned a four-star ranking from Charity Navigator and was ranked in Forbes magazine as one of the 20 most cost-effective non-profits in the United States. Project C.U.R.E. operates 400,000 square feet of warehouse space in 17 U.S. cities in 14 states, receives 26,000 types of donated medical supplies and equipment from 400 hospitals and manufacturers, and annually hosts more than 17,000 volunteers to sort, inspect, inventory, and hand-pack supplies for worldwide delivery. Read more

Rotary Club of Phoenix East Donates to UMOM Homeless Shelter


What does 450 pillows look like????

Thanks to one of the members of The Rotary Club of Phoenix East, we were able to successfully coordinate a donation from a local resort to a great cause: the UMOM New Day Homeless Shelter.  The effective network of Rotary made it possible to bring together donor and beneficiary and the outcome was a well-organized project that resulted in a win-win for everyone involved.


Two very full loads in the box truck: enough to completely fill one side of one of UMOM’s storage sheds from floor to ceiling with the balance going to the warehouse. They also got 5 cases of coffee mugs, 10 boxes of brand new full-size sheets, 2 rolling tubs full of linens, very nice pillow cases for all the pillows and 6 boxes of hotel size shampoo, conditioner and soap.

Greetings from London

cardiff castle
I wouldn’t have believed it before I came, but London is indeed as rainy as reputed. However, the precipitation hasn’t been putting a damper on this first proper week of classes at King’s College London. Swarms of freshmen, called “freshers”, buzz excitedly through King’s intricate maze of corridors. I too am thoroughly enthused to dig into my coursework. This year I will be studying the law of war, the history of war and insurgency in the Middle East, and an interdisciplinary class in int’l relations and int’l law. I definitely have a lot of intensive reading in the area of international law ahead of me so that I can begin to catch up to where some of my peers are (one already is an international lawyer!).  Read more

Interact Club of Pinnacle High wows RC of Scottsdale North

Pinnacle High INteractors
Rotary Club of Scottsdale North has been “wowed” by our Interact Club at Pinnacle High School.  President Karlee has done a tremendous job of getting the word out about Interact and bringing in new members for this school year.  She has also recruited a terrific new Teacher Advisor, Mrs. Ross, who we have made an Honorary Member of our club.

We supplied the Interact Club with tee shirts, decals and pizza for the annual Club Rush which was attended by about 150 interested students.  From that experience about 115 students subscribed to Kaylee’s “Interact Reminders,” and the club now has 78 Members and 5 Board Members.  Karlee has been an amazing advocate for Pinnacle High Interact and is hoping to be a Youth Exchange student next year.

Pinnacle High Interact Club will be doing a wide range of service projects as well as assisting our club in some of our projects.  We are SO proud of this group of young people!