Monthly Archives: March 2014

“Rotary’s Gone Mad”

heres-johnny_1
If you don’t know that this is Jack Nicholson in arguably one of the best unscripted moments in movie history, from the movie The Shining, and If you don’t know the famous line, “Heeere’s Johnny!, ” And you don’t know who Johnny is, or who said that line every night on the Tonight Show…..I just can’t help you.

For some it might be a stretch to see this image of Jack Nicholson going mad in the movie, The Shining, and instantly relate it to our current District Governor, Peter Kyle.  But not for me.  Because one of DG Peter’s favorite phrases when he gets frustrated with Rotary bureaucracy is , “Rotary’s gone mad!”  This line is usually uttered with his hands waving in the air and a look of pure disbelief on his face.  Rest assured he doesn’t mean that Rotary has literally gone mad, as Nicholson does in the movie.  He means that Rotary has become an organization that has lots of moving pieces and ever growing complexity.  For District Governors, and for the rest of us, there is a lot to know if you want to excel at this Rotary thing.  Rotary gone mad is just an expression of frustration that there seems to be too much to know about Rotary for those who want to just show up and do good.

This blog is about how to deal with helping club officers get the information they need to best “do good in the world.”  But before I get to all of that, sit back and watch two minute and ten seconds of what Rakutenplay.com says is actually the single scariest moment in movie history.  After polling audiences for what they thought were the scariest movies, they hooked viewers up to heart monitors and showed them the films.  They then measured the jump in the audience heart rate during the movies to get the exact scariest moment in each movie. They then compared jumps in heart rates to see which movie moment was the scariest. This two minute clip is the winner of the scariest movie moment of all time award causing audience hearts rates to jump an incredible 28%!  WARNING:  There is no violence, blood (well…just a little knife slash at the end), foul language or anything like that in this clip.  But I hate scary movies, and this two minutes, which doesn’t even have the benefit of being in the context of the rest of the film, still scares me to death.  Don’t watch it unless  you either like being reminded of the few scary moments you’ve spent in the movie theater, or,  you just have a morbid curiosity to see if this scares you as much as it scares everyone else.  FULL DISCLOSURE:  I was the guy who watched the movie, JAWS, and thought the shark looked real.  FURTHER DISCLOSURE: My daughter thinks I’m a wimp.

 

If you’ve composed yourself after watching the clip (Shelly Duvall plays opposite Jack Nicholson) let’s get to the issue of trying to overcome Rotary’s “madness” of complexity.  One of the best ways I know to learn what you need to know to effectively run your club is for you and your club’s officers and committee chairs to attend the upcoming District 7620 District Leadership Assembly on Saturday, April 5th, at the Sheraton North hotel.  Why?  Because your club’s “skill players” can go there and for $25 learn what they need to know to be a great committee chair, treasurer, secretary, foundation chair, etc.  Here are the session titles:

Area Governor

Community Service

and Partnering

Membership

Community Service and Partnering

Foundation MOU 2014-15 Certification

End Polio Now Panel

Foundation Global Grant Nuts & Bolts / Panel Discussion

Fundraising

Strategic Planning

Membership

Presidents-Elect

Your Club Meeting as a Show

New Generations

Public Relations

 

Public Relations

Secretary

 

Strategic Planning

Treasurer

 

 

Seriously?  Everything your club needs to improve is on the agenda.    In short, it is no longer enough to have good intentions about Rotary do-gooding.  You actually have to know how to plug into all of the fantastic resources available to you through Rotary AND our Rotary District so you can maximize your efforts and be as productive as possible for the time you invest.  None of us have unlimited time for Rotary, so this is a great investment in doing more with less.

I can’t end this post without a shameless plug for the session I will be running with Laurie Reuben of the Columbia-Patuxent club on strategic planning.  Laurie is an expert in strategic planning, and lot’s of other organizational development stuff….like….experiential learning, and she is currently helping the Columbia-Patuxent club go through the strategic planning process.  She has put together many of the tools the club is using to develop it’s plan, and she is willing to share!  For my part, I just like hanging around with people smarter than me and cracking a few jokes.  If your club either 1) doesn’t have a strategic plan, 2) has a strategic plan but isn’t engaged with it, or 3) already has a functioning plan, then you should have a few club members attend.  It will be an invaluable one hour show. Just remember to tip your waiters and waitresses before you leave.  (This is a joke….there will be no waiters and waitresses during our session.)

ALL of the sessions are going to be fantastic.  Our District’s Training guru, Paul Frey, has done his usual outstanding job in pulling all of this together for us.  Between the District Leadership Assembly, RLI, and yes….attending the District Conference, we don’t have to turn into Jack Nicholson in The Shining and “go mad” trying to keep up with Rotary.

PLEASE forward this blog around to your club’s leadership and ask if they are attending. The Assembly is April 5th at the Sheraton North in Beltsville from 8AM to 2PM.  The $25 includes continental breakfast and lunch.  The link to sign up is on DACdb.  If you don’t know how to sign up on DACdb you REALLY need to go to the District Leadership Assembly.  See ya there!

TO SUBSCRIBE TO READY FIRE AIM AND GET NOTICES OF NEW POSTS DIRECTLY TO YOUR EMAIL JUST CLICK ON THE SUBSCRIBE BOX TO THE RIGHT OF THE BLOG CONTENT.

 

 

 

A Really Stupid and Futile Gesture

If I had to name one aspect of leadership in Rotary that is the most interesting to me, it would be to find out what it is that becomes the catalyst for action in a Rotary club.  Rotary club’s are notorious for clinging to the status quo…until something….or someone….comes along to change the equation.  In this clip from Animal House (which is not the full clip –  which is too bad because the best lines come earlier but you have to wade through some R- Rated language to get to them) you can see that this organization has reached that point where desire gets turned into action.  If you saw the whole clip you would know that the catalyst was not Bluto’s (John Belushi) eloquence in front of his audience.  He beseeches them to “remember when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor.”  Not exactly accurate, but as one of the characters says, “he is on a roll.”  Bluto’s final scream of “Let’s Do It” has become the rallying cry of many organizations, and it’s worked out OK for NIKE…don’t you think?  It probably wouldn’t be too awful for a lot of Rotary clubs I know.

If you want some clear examples of Rotary clubs that have decided to “Just Do It,”  Membership Chair, Darrell Nevin, recently sent along this list of clubs that have gone into incredible new member mode.  Check out these clubs:

D7620 Clubs to Acknowledge with a “Significant Growth” Award for 2013-2014

Woodlawn Westview                6  to  14

BWI Rotary                            10  to  16

Olney                                    16  to  23

Gaithersburg                          18  to  27

Metro Bethesda                       29  to  36

Towsontowne                         40  to  51

Bel Air                                   43  to  48

Bethesda Chevy Chase             68  to  74

Lexington Park                        98  to  105

Annapolis                             152  to  162

 

As Darrell said in his email, these clubs alone are responsible for adding 70+ net new members to the District.  What do you think the energy level is like in these clubs right now?  Electric.  For these clubs the issue is now how to KEEP these new members, how to integrate them into the club, how to educate them about Rotary, and how to get them into leadership positions.  What a great problem to have.  (By the way…high on the list should be to get them to a District Conference….hint….hint.)

But for me, I’m mostly interested in what, if anything, happened to set off this membership explosion in these clubs?  Was it random?  Did it happen by accident?  Or did  someone in the club decide that it was time “for a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody’s part?”  If so, don’t you wonder who it was and how they did it?

I, myself, your intrepid Rotary reporter and District Governor Nominee, will be researching this question with each of these clubs and will get back to you with some answers.  Perhaps the data is inaccurate?  I hope not, because I love “futile and stupid gestures” in Rotary.  For our organization, at least half the time they turn into something that others call progress!  Remember, Ready, Fire, Aim.  Stay tuned…..

TO SUBSCRIBE TO THIS BLOG AND BE NOTIFIED OF NEW POSTS BY EMAIL, JUST FILL IN THE SUBSCRIBE BOX TO THE RIGHT OF THE BLOG.

 

A Short-Term Investment

Foundation DDF 3-20

One thing that keeps me up at night (well…lately lots of things keep me up at night. Notably, Connor the dog seems to need to go out in the middle of the night a lot more than he used to.  Sound familiar, guys?  ….but I digress)  is the concern that we are going to create a lot of enthusiasm for Annual Program Fund giving, and with it enthusiasm for participating in District grants.  And when we do create this new appreciation for the Rotary Foundation and how we, as a District, fund our good works, clubs that meet the new $200 per cap eligibility requirement for $3,000 District grants are going to flock to our Grants Committee with grant requests next year.  The problem is the money won’t be there.   I’m worried that club’s are going to be genuinely disappointed when their grant requests can’t be met, even though they worked hard to meet the eligibility requirements by being generous to the Foundation.

The issue is fully understanding how the SHARE program works with Annual Program Fund giving.  When we contribute to the APF the money returns to our District in three years.  So money contributed this year, the 2013-2014 year will return as SHARE dollars in the 2016-2017 year, which is the year Anna Mae Kobbe will be DG.  Today our District Rotary Foundation Chair, Claude Morissette, informed us of the District Designated Fund (DDF) amount we will get through the SHARE program in my year as DG in 2015 – 2016.  The number is $135,888. The amount is determined by how much we collectively gave to APF in the Rotary year 2012-2013, subject to certain minor adjustments. You see?  We are making a short-term investment in the amount of humanitarian service dollars we will have to “do good in the world” just three years after we make our contributions.

I created the chart (above) to show Rotarians this flow of money from our contributions to “buckets” that constitute our SHARE totals.  You can see that each District Governor and Foundation Chair is working with SHARE  funds determined by Foundation contributions that occurred years before they took office.  The point of the chart is to (hopefully) clearly show the enormous impact we can have if we all meet our new goals for APF giving.  The “bucket” of SHARE funds returning to the District will be HUGE and the number of grants awarded in the District, and the size of the grants in our District, is sure to increase by a significant amount.

So please remember that the funds you give to APF this year won’t be in our coffers until 2016-2017.  We are ALL making a very short-term investment in our future “do-gooding.” When you make this year’s contribution, please be patient and know that the funds available for next year’s grants were contributed three years ago.  By contributing at higher levels today and in every year thereafter, we are investing in a program that will significantly increase our DDF every year ….beginning in 2016-2017.  The question is….do we collectively have enough vision to pull this off?  I’m sure we do!

 

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO SUBSCRIBE TO READY, FIRE, AIM AND GET EMAIL NOTIFICATIONS OF NEW POSTS, JUST CLICK ON THE SUBSCRIBE LINK TO THE RIGHT OF THE BLOG.  THANKS,

 

Three Great Ideas from RLI

IMG_1450
L-R: The South Anne Arundel Rotary (I know…properly known as “South County”) contingent at RLI of Katie Blyth, Anne Wolfe, and Joe Van Deuren. Van Deuren teaches Martial Arts and Anger Management. Good combination for a President-Elect 

I admit it, when Saturday morning promised to be a beautiful sunny day in the mid-60’s, and knowing Sunday was supposed to be more crap weather, I wasn’t in the best mood to drive to Fairfax, Va. for another RLI (Rotary Leadership Institute) class.  But I had signed up for the class last year as part of the 7620 Leadership team’s pledge to IPDG Bob Parkinson, our District RLI guru, to become an RLI graduate.  So I found myself stuck in class with eighteen other Part 3 soon to be graduates wishing I was somewhere else.  Knowing that our District Governor, Peter Kyle, who has forgotten more about Rotary than I will probably ever know, was in the same class, kind of made me feel better.  I mean…if the boss could do it then so could I.

But guess what happened?  As usual, when surrounded by motivated Rotarians who are sharing best practices from multiple Rotary Districts, I found myself becoming engaged with the conversation.  And sure enough, I came away from class on Saturday with much more than my graduating pin.  (As a Rotary District Leader I know I need lots more pins to impress everyone and to set off alarms when I go through airport security.)  It turns out that I scribbled down several excellent ideas worthy of further thought.  I thought I would share my top three ideas with you, although everyone in the class shared their number one idea and most were better than mine.  Unfortunately for you dearest reader, I’m writing today’s post.

Idea One:  In our early class about International Service with facilitator, Horace McCormack,  he shared with us that international service doesn’t have to be about money. It can be about relationships.  Why not meet and get to know Rotarians from other parts of the world?  With modern technology you could schedule Skype calls, text, email, and otherwise develop a relationship with interesting people from interesting places.  How neat would that be?  As yes, they could turn out to be a partner in a service project, but what if they don’t?  Why miss an opportunity to learn about other countries from the Rotarians who live there?

Idea Two:  I often hear from clubs with lots of older members that they don’t have a selling proposition to recruit younger members.  They can’t figure out why younger people might want to join their club.  How about this?  Young professionals would be very interested in meeting older Rotarians who  could provide possible opportunities for business networking.  At a minimum, they could be great mentors who could help them with their professional development.  This thought came from a class on Rotary vocational service.  Great stuff!

Idea Three:  Incoming RI President Gary Huang wants us to “Light Up Rotary” and has asked us to do a “Rotary Day” event.  In our class on PR and Marketing it occurred to me that we should be seriously considering the idea.  After all, while most clubs do service projects, how many put the Rotary brand right up front?  I guess I will leave it to your imagination, but it isn’t too hard to put together the idea of “Light Up Rotary” with a “Rotary Day” event.  Is anyone else thinking fireworks?  How about a search light lighting up a building with a Rotary symbol?  Hmmm.

If you are a new Rotary member you need to find out about RLI.  And if you are an older Rotary member you need to find out about RLI.  Turns out that its a pretty good way to spend a Saturday.

TO SUBSCRIBE TO READY FIRE AIM AND RECEIVE BLOG NOTIFICATIONS DIRECTLY TO YOUR EMAIL IN BOX, JUST CLICK ON SUBSCRIBE TO THE RIGHT OF THE BLOG.

IMG_1458
The graduating class
IMG_1452
Yours Truly, DGD Anna Mae Kobbe, DG Peter Kyle. They CAN BE TAUGHT!
IMG_1448
Hard at work larnin Rotary stuff.
IMG_1446
AG (facilitator) Mark Milby, PDG (facilitator) Steve Cook, and AG Geoffrey Fenner yucking it up.

Lessons Learned from the Columbia Rotary Club

 

20140311_191650
L-R: Russ Gobble, Vernon Gray (nearly hidden behind some other dude with a luminous collar), Earl Wilkinson (the dude with the luminous collar), Rick Hope with head in hand…hopefully thinking about something important, John Startt, Dave Parris, and PDG Jim McDiarmid “The Admiral.”

 The Columbia Rotary Club (Tuesday evenings) is another one of the “not big” Rotary clubs in our District doing great things that you’ve never heard of.  I visited with them this week and  I’m pleased to report that they are quietly going about serving the local and international community in a big way.   Before I get into sharing some of what they are doing,  here’s a shout out to Past District Governor, Jim McDiarmid, who is  a member of the Columbia club.  Jim was DG when I began doing training in the District all the way back in 2003-2004.  Yes….it’s been THAT LONG.

Here’s the first thing I noticed about the Columbia Evening Club.  Maybe it’s because our long-time and legendary Polio Plus Chair, Raj Saini, is a member, or maybe it’s because their hearts are in the right place, this club is a long-time supporter of Polio Plus.  How do they do it?  Check this out.  Each member is committed to giving $200 per year to the Rotary Foundation.  Their secret sauce is that $120 goes to the Annual Program Fund, and $80 per member goes to Polio Plus.  The currently have 24 members so they have $2,000+ Polio Plus giving “baked in the cake.”  But last year, due to some special donations, the club contributed $19,000 to Polio Plus.  Wow!  They also have several Paul Harris Society members giving to Polio Plus as well. (See my recent post about the Bill Gates 2 for 1 match on Polio contributions.)

The next thing about the club is that they are BIG fundraisers.  This less than thirty member club raises $30,000 per year through their golf tournament and other fundraisers.  That’s big money for a club this size.  But the interesting thing is that they do a lot of “hands on” community service and members pride themselves on spending time each week doing service work.  A favorite charity of theirs in Howard County is the Loan Closet, an organization that loans out wheel chairs and other medical equipment.  It’s not the money…it’s the labor that they seem to be most proud of.  Couldn’t we all do a little more of that?

The challenge for this club, as it is for many of the smaller clubs that I visit, is to realize that although they are deservedly proud of the good work they do in Howard County and in supporting the Rotary Foundation, they have the opportunity to reinvent themselves to do even more.  Speaking with Club President, Mimi O’Donnell, and President-Elect Tom Burtzlaff, after the meeting, we agreed that one of the roles of Rotary club leaders is “to love their club a little less.”  They agreed there is much that can be done to move this club forward.  The only limits to where they can go and what they can accomplish in the future is their own imagination and the club’s willingness to leave the status quo behind.  Ready, Fire, Aim!  My own suggestion?….more younger members.

I sense that change is on the way in the Columbia Rotary Club.  I can’t wait to see what direction its going to take.

 

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO SUBSCRIBE TO READY, FIRE, AIM AND RECEIVE NOTIFICATIONS OF NEW POSTS DIRECTLY TO YOUR EMAIL INBOX, JUST CLICK ON THE SUBSCRIBE BUTTON TO THE RIGHT OF THE BLOG PAGE.  THANK YOU.

 

 

A 350% Return on Money to Fight Polio… Seriously?

End Polio Now Logo

One of the interesting things I’ve learned about the Rotary Foundation and the work we do in Rotary is that sometimes we get to talking about some pretty big numbers.  And when that happens, often times Rotarian’s eyes kind of glaze over because, let’s face it, we are all not financial gurus and half of us would prefer to learn by looking at pictures instead of looking at numbers.  So let me take a crack at explaining the amazing financial opportunity available to anyone thinking of making a contribution to Polio Plus.  (WARNING:  This post says little about the majesty of what we are about to accomplish in terms of eradicating Polio from the planet.  I’ll let people who can write better than me take on how it feels to be a part of such an important and wonderful effort.  This post is all about the money.)  

Here’s the deal.  Going forward, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will match two-to-one, up to US $35 million per year, every dollar Rotary commits to reduce the funding shortfall for polio eradication through 2018.  Let’s break this down into small numbers so we are sure we understand what this means.  If you cut a check to the Rotary Foundation for Polio Plus for, let’s say, $100, then the Gates Foundation will match that check with their own check for $200, making the total contribution $300.  In investment terms, you would have earned a risk-free 200% return on your money.  In this case, you just leveraged your money by 200% in helping Rotary meet what is BY FAR it’s most important strategic goal.  (I know  the blog title says 350%….so please read on.)

If we go back to the bigger numbers, Gates is matching our collective contribution of $35 million with $70 million, EVERY YEAR for the next FIVE years.  So if we do our part, and they do their part, the total contribution will be $105 million EACH YEAR for the next five years, or more than $500 MILLION.  The thing is, the total bill for the Endgame for Polio, announced last year by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), is $5.5 BILLION, more than 10 times Rotary’s contribution IF we hit our numbers.  They have commitments right now for $4 billion.  The difference between $5.5 billion and the $4 billion already committed is the shortfall.  Everyone agrees that Rotarians remain the heart and soul of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, but I hope you can see that now we have some very powerful partners.  We should be proud to be part of a pretty amazing coalition of governmental and nongovernmental organizations pledging billions to eradicate polio.

Here’s one last bit of information  you may not know.  In addition to the Gates Foundation match, the Trustees of the Rotary Foundation have announced that they will match up to $7 million of District Designated Funds (DDF) by 50 cents on the dollar from the Foundation’s World Fund.  Here’s what that means to us.  Under the direction of DG Peter Kyle and DRFC Claude Morissette, our District Leadership Team contributed $10,000 of global DDF to Polio Plus this  year.  That money is matched 50 cents on the dollars by TRF World Fund so it’s worth $15,000.  The $15,000 is matched 2 for 1 by the Gates Foundation, a total Gates Foundation match of $30,000, so the total value is $45,000.  Our $10,000 DDF contribution from the District is turned into $45,000 – a 350% RETURN!  And as I said above, our individual and club donations to Polio Plus get matched 2 – 1, or a 200% return!

I hope you made it all the way to the bottom of this post.  If the numbers are killing you, just focus on the picture below and feel great about what we do.  Then cut a check to the Rotary Foundation and know the Gates Foundation is matching you 2 for 1.

IF YOU WANT TO SUBSCRIBE TO READY FIRE AIM AND RECEIVE THESE POSTS DIRECT TO YOUR EMAIL JUST CLICK ON THE SUBSCRIBE BOX TO THE RIGHT OF THE BLOG.

 

Polio immunization

 

 

 

 

“Going forward, the Gates Foundation will match two-to-one, up to US$35 million per year, every dollar Rotary commits to reduce the funding shortfall for polio eradication through 2018,” said Jeff Raikes, the foundation’s chief executive officer, in a prerecorded video address shown during the convention’s plenary session on 25 June. “If fully realized, the value of this new partnership with Rotary is more than $500 million. In this way, your contributions to polio will work twice as hard.”

Rotary and Hollywood

I’ve been asked to be a speaker at the District 7630 District Conference and in the interest of having some fun, my theme will be Rotary and Hollywood.  At the risk of giving away my talk, I just can’t resist sharing some of these clips…mostly because I’m entertaining myself tremendously.  My first clip is from the movie Catch Me If You Can, the story of one of the world’s most successful con artists, Frank Abignale, played by Leonardo DiCaprio.  This scene is one of those rare moments where Rotary is actually portrayed on the big screen.

Do you remember this?  Christopher Walken, playing DiCaprio’s father, is being honored at a big Rotary event.  This really IS your father’s Rotary.  Notice that the room is full of white guys.  No women.  No people of color.  And notice the look of totally admiration on the face of DiCaprio as he worships his father in this big moment.  The Rotary wheel is on the podium and hangs proudly over the auditorium.

As I watch this clip I can’t help but focus on some other aspects of Rotary in the 1950’s.  This is OBVIOUSLY a room full of powerful people in town.  This is where the LEADERS are.  Back in the day it was unthinkable that a successful businessman wouldn’t belong to a fraternal organization like Rotary.  I know.  I know.  If you are looking for diversity you won’t find it in this accurate portrayal of Rotary in the old days.  But can’t we agree that we should  aspire to be this kind of force for good in our communities?  To the extent that Rotary is our chance to make SIGNIFICANT positive change locally and around the world, then why not give some thought to asking more people in the business community to join our clubs?

Why would they join?  How about these oldies but goodies in terms of an elevator speech for Rotary membership:  1) Your customers will appreciate that you and your business serve the community, 2) Your employees will appreciate that your business adheres to the value of community service, 3) You will meet other “movers and shakers” who you might want to do business with of all ages, 4) You will never feel better then when you give something back to the community, and 5) Rotary just happens to be a lot of fun.

More clips to come.  I hope you enjoy them.  Oh, and thanks to Dan Houghtaling, DG of District 7630, for inviting me to speak.  What fun!

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO SUBSCRIBE TO MY READY, FIRE, AIM ROTARY BLOG, JUST ENTER YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS IN THE SUBSCRIBE BOX TO THE RIGHT OF THE BLOG AND NEW POSTS WILL COME DIRECTLY TO YOUR INBOX.

 

 

Big Success at Chesapeake PETS

 

20140228_123326
RI President-Elect Gary Huang addresses Plenary session at Chesapeake PETS.  His theme will be “Light up Rotary.”

2-29-14:  WASHINGTON POST REPORTS:  MASSIVE ENERGY SURGE FROM CHESAPEAKE PETS CLASS 2014-2015.  DISTRICT GOVERNOR-ELECT BILL FINE TO  MEET WITH UTILITY AUTHORITIES TO EXPLAIN MASSIVE POWER SURGE ORIGINATING IN RESTON VIRGINIA THAT IS SURE TO UPSET ROTARY STATUS QUO AND RESULT IN DRAMATIC POSITIVE CHANGE THROUGHOUT DISTRICT 7620.  NAYSAYERS TAKE COMFORT THAT ROTARY GETS NEW PRESIDENTS EVERY YEAR AND PETS GRADUATES NEED GREAT SKILL, STAMINA, AND VISION TO ACTUALLY GET SOMETHING DONE.  SIXTY-FOUR DISTRICT 7620 PE’S SAY THEY ARE UP TO THE CHALLENGE.

PETS training feels a lot like spring training.  Every year hope springs anew that this is the year that the team will come together and we will win the World Series.  Rookies (in our case rookie Club Presidents) get the chance to make it in the big leagues of being the leader of their Rotary club.  We give them the training they need to be fantastic club presidents and almost all leave the training with high expectations.  Of course it remains to be seen if they actually translate their good intentions into actions that will make a difference in their clubs.

Nowadays our President-Elects get trained at an event known as Chesapeake PETS, where four different District’s send Club President’s To Be.  As in previous years the result was a major event where PEs got the best training, and the best trainers, that four Districts had to offer.  In addition, because of the size of the gathering we got some of the best speakers RI has as well.  This year’s speakers included incoming RI President-Elect Gary Huang and new RI Director for Zone 33 Robert Hall.  Perhaps more importantly with so many PEs hanging around the hotel their was a high velocity of good ideas being shared by all.  OK…even MORE importantly, the hospitality suites for each District were open every evening, and Bill Fine and his wife Kathe, were superb hosts as PEs gathered to get to know each other and trade best practices.

As for myself, I’m an old hand at PETS training.  This year I had the pleasure to work once again with one my favorite Rotary peeps, Past District Governor, Paul Frey, who is  a long-time pro at training Rotarians as well as being an all around  good guy.  Paul did his usual amazing job this weekend of pulling us together as a training team and giving DGE Bill a great lift-off with his team of 2014-2015 Presidents.  Watch out everyone.  New club presidents are coming soon to a Rotary club near you!

TO SUBSCRIBE TO RFA JUST ENTER YOUR EMAIL IN THE SUBSCRIPTION BOX TO THE RIGHT OF THE BLOG PAGE.

20140301_13485220140228_12042220140228_100758