Club Information
Welcome to our Rotary Club of Mesa West!
Mesa West
Thursdays at 12:00 PM
Via Zoom
Mesa, AZ
United States of America
District Site
Venue Map
No Zoom Meeting Oct 29 2020
Mesa West Rotary does not hold a regular meeting on the 5th Thursday of any month which has five Thursdays.
October 29 Mesa West Social
Highlights of October 22 Zoom Meeting
President Dan Coons opened the meeting reciting the Rotary Vision Statement, and reminding members that the 2020-21 Rotary International theme is "Rotary Opens Opportunities."  Wendell Jones offered the invocation.
Introduction of Guests
  • Carla L Krcmarik - whose membership application was approved by the board and forwarded to Mesa West club members on October 21, was present at the meeting.  Carla is an Allstate Insurance Agent.  Her office is located in the same business complex where President Dan's printing business is located.
  • Michael Rappaport - speaker 
  • Andrea Murphy - recently retired Westwood High School teacher extraordinaire who served as the sponsoring faculty member for the Interact club at the school which is sponsored by Mesa West Rotary.
Rotary Minute - Pam Cohen
Pam shared some interesting information about a partnership with a long history between the United Nations and Rotary. 
  • In 1914, Chesley Perry, Rotary's first general secretary, wrote, "Let Rotary make International Peace and Good Will its mission as an international organization. 
  • In 1942, Rotarians organized a conference in London that inspired the creation of UNESCO, whose aim was to build peace through knowledge and communication. 
  • In 1945, representatives from fifty nations gathered for a conference in San Francisco to finalize and approve the UN Charter.  Rotary was one of 42 nongovernmental organizations that participated in an official consultative role.  Rotary members guided agendas, performed translations, suggested wording and helped resolve disputes between the delegates.  
  • In 1946, Rotarians attended the first general assembly of the United Nations.
  • In 1985 Polio Plus launched prompting Rotary to forge a closer connection with the United Nations along with the World Health Organization and other agencies.
  • In 1989, the first annual Rotary Day at the United Nations was launched.
  • In 1991, Rotary established a network of thirty representatives to the UN and other organizations.
  • in 2000 Rotary partnered with the United Nations Foundation to raise money for polio eradication.
  • In 2013, Retired RI General Secretary Edwin H Futa was appointed as the first dean of the Rotary Representative Network.
  • In 2020, we can celebrate 75 years since the United Nations Charter was signed.
More details about this partnership can be found in the October issue of the Rotary Magazine.
Happy Dollars - Greg Okonowski
  • John Pennypacker said that when he was in Virginia on a mission to find Halloween Pumpkins with his grandsons, he was able to show them a Huey helicopter as it flew overhead, informing the boys that he used to fly those.  He realized it had been over fifty years ago when he did so, and pledged $50 for the opportunity to share that visual memory with them.
  • Michael Rappaport went above and beyond guest speaker expectations when he made a pledge of $21 to celebrate the birth of a new grandson.
  • Dan Coons pledged $10 - he was happy Jeanie was back.  He admitted he had recorded the October 15 meeting, but did not get the recording to Jeanie until Tuesday evening, and said it was his fault the Messenger was ten hours late.
  • Chuck Flint pledged $10, but felt that Greg Okonowski should be behind the desk in the picture of the Oval Office that was Greg's Zoom background image at the moment.  He was also a bit frustrated that since they were attending the meeting together, it was not possible to mute Ray without muting Wendell.
  • Ray Smith thought there ought to be $5 fines for each of a couple of recent insults he'd recently endured from Chuck, but thought Chuck ought to pay them.
  • Jim Schmidt stated he was a bit ahead of Pam on celebrating his 65th birthday.  He said the actual day - October 15 was a horrible day.  He worked all day until about 10:00 PM.  He added it all ended well with a good celebration the following Sunday.
  • Ray Smith led everyone in singing Happy Birthday.  
  • Lola McClane pledged $10 glad to know that community service funds would be used to support the YMCA Thanksgiving effort.
  • Shelly Romine pledged $10 - happy to support the YMCA Thanksgiving project.
  • Greg Okonowski pledged $50 for the birthday he would be celebrating on Sunday.
  • Bob Zarling pledged $5 - happy to see his Rotary mother, Jeanie, was back.
  • No regular Zoom meeting October 29
  • Members were encouraged to RSVP to Pam if they plan to attend the October 29 evening gathering at her home.
  • The annual in-person RYLA at Camp Pinerock has been cancelled.  A virtual RYLA will be held January 15-16. Members were asked to encourage any high school students they know to register and participate.
  • The nominating process for District Governor for 2023-24 has been announced by the District.  The deadline to receive nominations is December 8.
  • Don Boucher made an announcement encouraging members to donate to The Rotary Vocational Fund of Arizona. (TRVFA).  Up to $400 for someone filing taxes as an individual or up to $800 for a couple filing jointly may be able to be deducted from their state income tax obligation.  John Pennypacker added that the need for revenue is year-round for TRVFA and he encouraged members to use the on-line option of having a recurring donation charged to their credit card.  There is a link at the bottom of this newsletter.
  • Bob Zarling added that cumulative gifts from Mesa West Rotarians made us one of the highest supporting clubs of TRVFA.  Bryan Goetzenberger is the current Vocational Service Chair and he and Bob hope to bring some past beneficiaries of TRVFA grants sponsored by Mesa West to a meeting in the spring so members can hear their stories.  
  • Ray Smith educated members that since they would get a 100% tax credit from the state for their TRVFA donation, they would not be able to take a charitable donation deduction on their Federal return.
President Dan introduced Michael Rappaport, with the Homeless Engagement Lift Partnership (HELP).  Michael said they begin their effort to improve the plight of the homeless in their community in 2012.  They started in July.  Their first project was to fill backpacks with toiletries, hygiene articles and clothing.  To date, they have distributed over 20,000 backpacks.
Michael's wife, Dawn, was homeless as a child - during her adolescence and early teens.  There are layers and cycles of homelessness.  They focused on helping those that need help in getting past that point where the cycle is most likely to recur.  When youth age out of foster care is one such point.  
They also looked at demographic information and wanted to focus on an area that would create a better future.  They decided to focus on youth.  For the past two and a half years, they have a HELP Snackz program which sends snack bags home from school with children identified by the school as needing nutrition when they are not at school. 
They are operating in the east valley as well as in the Phoenix metro area.  They are in Mesa, Kyrene, Tempe Union, Apache Junction and Chandler school districts and also work with some charity schools.  The snacks are delivered to the schools every month and sent home with kids every school day.
When COVID shut things down in March, they had to figure out another way to help.  Michael said there are an average of 4-5 family members in each homeless family.  They started delivering grocery bags of food to the families that had an identifiable location.  They have delivered the grocery bags to cars, mobile storage units, behind dumpsters.  The numbers of those in need are outrunning their resources and ability to adequately serve the needs.  He said that Mesa has a disproportionally high number of homeless.
In past years, they have had Project Reach Events - dinners with about 250 kids and their families.  People attending had the opportunity to adopt a family - not so much about getting money and toys as getting to tell their story.
They try to provide education about homelessness.  Project REACH attempts to educate the general public especially about the point that the kids affected are not the cause of the problem they are dealing with.  Giving them hope starts with food.  They need to be able to count on a sustainable source and they need to be able to trust someone who keeps the promises they make.
In early 2021, they will begin classes teaching life skills.  Since common sense is not so common, they will be teaching critical thinking.  There will be 29 classes in all.  Their goal is to have the classes available all over Maricopa county by 2022, and eventually throughout the state.
For their organization, Michael says that collaboration is very important.  We are stronger together than individually.  They try to minimize overlap with other programs available in the community.   Their goal is to create an opportunity for these kids to thrive.
CLICK HERE to watch the short video Michael shared about the HELP Snackz program.  He told about 25-40 people packing 9,000 snack bags in 1 1/2 hours.  They found an adult care facility where the residents decorated the snack bags.  
Michael said they are privately funded.  A major donor is a real estate broker.  They have an "Elite 100" program where donors who donate $100/month for 12 months are recognized for their support of the HELP Snackz program.  He said they are a 501(c)(3).
More Announcements
  • Following the program Andrea Murphy announced that Daniel Becker will be replacing her as the sponsoring faculty member for Westwood High School Interact.  She is attending Phoenix College full time learning to be a Paralegal.   By next year, she will be a full-time paralegal and continue her part-time position at MCC.
  • November 5 the program will be presented by Scott Smith, a former member of Mesa West Rotary.
Follow-Up to Rotary International Council on Resulutions
Rotary International Councils on Legislation and Resolutions
As part of last year’s District 5495 Conference, an election was held to select the Primary and Alternate Representatives to the RI Council on Legislation.  PDGs John Pennypacker and Duce Minor were elected as the Primary and Alternate representatives.
There are two main differences between the COL and COR. The COL meets every 3 years, the last being in April 2019 and the next is scheduled for April 2022. Proposed Enactments for the next COL are due into RI by the end of December 2020. These Enactments are proposed changes to the RI Constitution or By-laws.
The Council on Resolutions is an on-line voting event each year during this 3-year span. Proposals submitted to the COR are opinions or suggestions that, if approved by the COR voting body, are then forwarded to the RI Board and/or the TRF Board for their consideration. This year for the first time, comments can be entered for each of the items on the COR slate. Each primary representative from the over 500 districts around the world was allowed to enter 3 comments and these comments could be reviewed by all representatives prior to casting their vote.  The voting on these items is a simple YES / NO or no vote. The voting period for the COR is October 15 through November 15, with the results to be published on November 20.
This year’s COR has 31 items to include 1 “urgent” enactment. This has the effect of reversing an enactment passed at the COL last April.  There are 21 comments on this item alone.
It is always interesting to read the items in detail, and now with comments, to see how they reflect the thinking of Rotarians from many foreign countries. Some of the comments were helpful in making the final determination on the vote.
Of interest were the number of proposed items recommending changes to the 4-Way Test. Other items addressed Rotaract and younger persons, changes to Areas of Focus to include adding Seniors and dependent persons to a specific AOF. There are items recommending RI define “Positive Peace”. COVID had a few suggestions on how RI could provide support. There was also an interesting suggestion for the Board to consider term limits for the General Secretary.
These 31 items can be viewed on the RI website.  If you have any questions, I will be happy to discuss any item and why the vote was cast as YES or NO.
PDG John Pennypacker
COL Primary Representative
Today's Chuckle
Something to Ponder

"Life is never fair, and perhaps it is a good thing for most of us that it is not." -Oscar Wilde

The Most Efficient Way to Support The Rotary Foundation
The Rotary Foundation is the charitable arm of Rotary that enables the amazing work we, as Rotarians, are all proud to be a part of.  Every Rotarian is strongly encouraged to support TRF every year by donating to the General Fund of TRF.  The target gift is $100 per year per member.  That has been the target for a very long time and in the US the average family income has multiplied a few times since that target was set.  Many Rotarians who have the means to do so have set their personal target at the $1,000 per year mark making them eligible for the Paul Harris Society level of donor recognition. 
The End Polio Now campaign is a separate fund to which gifts are matched two-for-one by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.  Many Rotarians choose to support both the general fund and the fight to end polio.
No matter what level you decide to donate, please support the Foundation by giving through Rotary Direct.  CLICK HERE to get answers to commonly asked questions about this program.  DOWNLOAD A FORM to authorize your Rotary Direct donations.  By giving through Rotary direct, the opportunity for human error is eliminated and recognition credit for the Rotarian and their club is much more accurate and timelier.
You CAN make a difference!
Executives & Directors
President Elect
Foundation Director
Public Image Director
Club Service Director
Service Projects Director
Executive Secretary
Upcoming Events
Weekly Club Meeting via Zoom
Nov 05, 2020
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Weekly Club Meeting via Zoom
Nov 12, 2020
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Monthly Board Meeting
Nov 17, 2020
5:30 PM - 7:30 PM
Weekly Club Meeting via Zoom
Nov 19, 2020
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Weekly Club Meeting via Zoom
Nov 26, 2020
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Weekly Club Meeting via Zoom
Dec 03, 2020
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Weekly Club Meeting via Zoom
Dec 10, 2020
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Monthly Board Meeting
Dec 15, 2020
5:30 PM - 7:30 PM
Weekly Club Meeting via Zoom
Dec 17, 2020
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Weekly Club Meeting via Zoom
Dec 24, 2020
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
View entire list
Oct 29, 2020
Nov 05, 2020
Valley Metro - Transit issues/ Covid-19, etc.
Nov 12, 2020
Organist - Organ Stop Pizza
Nov 19, 2020
Assistant DA - Prosecutor of OJ Simpson Trial
Nov 26, 2020
View entire list
Birthdays & Anniversaries
Member Birthdays
Don LaBarge
October 12
Jim Schmidt
October 15
Warren Williamson
October 15
Greg Okonowski
October 25
Pam Cohen
October 29
Spouse Birthdays
Sandy Myren
October 20
Scott Williams
October 25
Vickie Smith
October 29
Dick Myren
Sandy Myren
October 5
Greg Bouslog
Sheena Bouslog
October 25
Greg Okonowski
Laura Okonowski
October 25
Join Date
Shane Buntrock
October 1, 2012
8 years
Sharon Spane
October 1, 1988
32 years
Melodie Jackson
October 4, 2007
13 years
Brian Harvey
October 20, 2010
10 years
Ed Koeneman
October 28, 2010
10 years
Aaron Huber
October 30, 2001
19 years
Rotary District 5495 Links
District Links
Rotary Interact District 5495
Rotary District 5495
The Rotary Vocational Fund of Arizona (TRVFA)
Rotary Youth Exchange
Rotary Youth Leadership Awards - RYLA
RYLA Service Project Support
Bulletin Editor
Jeanie Morgan
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Russell Hampton
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THE FOUR WAY TEST of the things we think, say or do

first  Is it the TRUTH?
second  Is it FAIR to all concerned?
third  Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
fourth Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?