Tag Archives: Fellowship

New Member Networking Event December 10

–submitted by Haley Saalsaa; photos by Dave Ewanowski


Club President Ellsworth Brown and Haley Saalsaa

On the morning of December 10 25 of us got together for a new member event at the Blackhawk Country club. We were welcomed with fresh hot pastries accompanied by coffee and orange juice.


From left: Jorge Hidalgo, Mike Casey, Larry Collins & Carol Goedken

We took the first thirty minutes to talk amongst ourselves and then the fun really began. Jason Beren orchestrated a Bingo game deriving answers from surveys we had all previously taken. It was a unique networking event and fun to try something new. Often times networking is the same and discussions become routine. The bingo game allowed us to find out unique things about our fellow Rotarians that we may not have known before. For example, did you know that our president Ellsworth Brown played cymbals in high-school? He could put on quite a show incorporating CO2 for special effects OR that TJ Blitz is a trained stage actor?


From Left: Sandy Morales, TJ Blitz, Craig Bartlett & Tom Popp



From left: Mary Borland, Ellsworth Brown, Nick Curran

These are the types of things that likely would not have come into conversation if we weren’t playing an exciting game of Bingo! Jason threw a great event and I look forward to this spring for more events to come.


Our Proposed Enactment – “…subject to two or more inconsistent meanings” ??

–submitted by Paul Riehemann and Karen Kendrick-Hands

Going Green Logo

We received a reply from Rotary International on the Going Green Fellowship Group’s (GGFG) Proposed Enactment which was endorsed by the District.  It’s not good.

The Proposed Enactment asks that Clubs and RI be able to support the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate the global warming humanitarian crisis.


Letter to the District from RI’s Constitution and Bylaws [C&B] Committee –

2016 Council on Legislation: File 163-E.  Excerpts:

The Committee has tentatively determined that file 163-E, proposed by the Rotary Club of Madison, is duly proposed, but defective under RI Bylaws section 7.037.2:

(a) it is subject to two or more inconsistent meanings

If the RI Board agrees with the Committee’s determination as to the status of your proposed legislation, it will not be transmitted to the 2016 Council for consideration. Even if it is transmitted to the Council, a member of the Constitution and Bylaws Committee may comment at the Council that the proposed legislation has been determined to be defective.

In their review of the legislation, the Committee made the following comments:

During its review of file 163, the Committee believed that this proposed
change would be inconsistent with the constitutional documents, as it could be
considered political in nature and would be in conflict with article 13, sections
1 and 3 of the Standard Rotary Club Constitution.

You may wish to be aware that the deadline to submit amendments to proposed legislation is 31 March 2015. Please respond with any amendments to your legislation as soon as possible.


District 6250 Reply –

With the support of many District and Club leaders, District Governor Dave Warren forwarded this REPLY.  Excerpts:

  • “It appears that the Constitution and Bylaws [C&B] Committee’s declaration of File 163-E-D to be defective was in error and contrary to Rotary International’s governance procedures.”
  • “The C&B Committee has furnished no evidence or basis for the proposal’s susceptibility to two or more inconsistent meanings.  That finding, we believe, is incorrect.
  • “To bring its decision into compliance with RI’s governance procedures and to render an action that is “Fair to All Concerned”, Rotary District 6250 urges the C&B Committee to reconsider and alter its “tentative” action on File 163-E-D to advance the District 6250’s proposal for consideration at the 2016 Council on Legislation.”
  • “District 6250’s Going Green Fellowship Group proceeded precisely as then President Elect Gary Huang advised when he spoke at the Rotary Club of Madison, saying that initiatives in Rotary “must begin with the club.”  We are deeply disappointed that the C&B Committee is considering keeping our duly proposed and endorsed enactment from reaching the 2016 Council on Legislation for their consideration.”


RI Response –

The Committee will review and discuss your letter at their April 28-29 meeting. Based on the results of that discussion, the Committee would be able to extend the deadline for amendments, to allow your district time to address any concerns.


We’re confident that the C&B Committee and Rotary will follow the Four-Way Test here.  We are not going to make any amendments at this time since we don’t have any feedback on the concerns raised.


The Proposed Enactment asks for an exception to Rotary’s non-political stance to fully empower RI and Clubs to support the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate the global warming humanitarian crisis (GWHC).  Some believe that the GWHC is not political.  Under these dictionary definitions of “political” we believe action on the GWHC is political, as is Rotary’s successful campaign to assist in the eradication of polio.


  1. relating to the government, the state or the public affairs
  2. of or relating to citizens
  3. having a definite policy

Additionally, some solutions will require legislation – see the Group’s Open Letter.

We’re heartened by the support of so many in District 6250 and our Club and will keep you posted.

2015 Rotary International Convention – Canary in a Coal Mine?

–submitted by Paul Riehemann

Going Green Logo


Today more than 13 million inhabitants of São Paulo, Brazil find themselves on the edge of an unprecedented public calamity.  As is usual in calamity situations, the most vulnerable, poorest communities are likely to pay the highest price with their health and their dignity.  More and more scientific studies show the link between deforestation in the north and the reduction of rainfall in the southeast, presenting further evidence of how the effects of climate change are already upon us.

excerpts from: Brazil drought: water rationing alone won’t save Sao Paulo          —The Guardian, Feb. 11, 2015

The drought is interfering in several ways with the Rotary International 2015 Convention which starts on June 6th in São Paulo.  One is dengue fever:

   Drought-Stricken São Paulo Battles Dengue Fever Outbreak
    –Wall Street Journal, March 3, 2015

      The tropical mosquito-borne virus, which often results in high fever, intense
muscle pain and convulsions, has killed at least 17 people in São Paulo state in the first six weeks of 2015. That’s up from just three deaths through mid-February of 2014, according to national health officials. Suspected cases have surged tenfold to 51,849 over the same period.

There were warnings:
Severe Droughts in Amazon linked to Climate Change, says study    CBS NEWS, Jan 2013

Many thanks to Roth Judd and Karen Kendrick-Hands for pointing out this RI Convention/climate change connection.

What to do?

Rotary can be a leader in helping to solve global humanitarian crises being caused by climate change.  Urge your District representative to the 2016 Council on Legislation to support District 6250’s Proposed Enactment (File 163-E-D).  It empowers Rotary to work to mitigate these crises by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.


Another Call to Action

 Researchers Link Syrian Conflict to a Drought Made Worse by Climate Change   –New York Times, March 2, 2015

“What began as civil war has since escalated into a multifaceted conflict, with at least 200,000 deaths.

The United Nations estimates that half of the country’s 22 million people have been affected, with more than six million having been internally displaced.”


Vote Results a ‘Go’ and a Model to Initiate Dialogue

Going Green Logo.jpg

We are pleased to share that District 6250 voted to endorse Enactment “A”: to mitigate global warming by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.  You can read the endorsed proposed enactment for the 2016 Council on Legislation here.  Many thanks to all that participated in this process.  As District Governor Dave Warren said in his email announcing the results, “This exercise in Rotary Governance has once again confirmed that everything that happens in Rotary is not only initiated, but also decided by our clubs.”

A Model for Dialogue

The purpose of this project is to generate dialogue within Rotary on the global warming humanitarian crisis.  Why?  To share information and gain support for action.  From our Open Letter on September 29, 2014:

Abraham Lincoln.jpg

Public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment, nothing can fail. Without it, nothing can succeed.
–Abraham Lincoln


Here’s the model we’ve used; we hope others will consider using it in their organizations and/or local government:

  1. Create a group within your organization that wants to work to mitigate the effects of global warming.
  2. Learn how to propose that your national/international organization support reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Propose a change to your organization’s governing documents?
  3. Make a formal proposal – be bold.
  4. Through sharing of information and dialogue, have your local group approve your proposal (in Rotary we needed approval from District Clubs) and then share it with your entire organization.
  5. Work to have it passed by your entire organization by sharing information and dialoguing. –  this is what it’s all about!

Next Steps

We are working to share information on the Proposed Enactment throughout Rotary so it is approved at the 2016 Council on Legislation.  This will include discussions and finding partners to help create a Climate Change Rotarian Action Group.

In service,
Paul Riehemann and Karen Kendrick-Hands, Co-chairs

P.S. – note over 10 members from District Clubs have signed on to Going Green (GG).  The logo above is a District logo.  If you’d like to join, please email us at bobblock1014 at att.net.  Meetings are held the first Wednesday each month after our Rotary meeting (Inn on the Park, on the Capitol Square in Madison).  Rotary meetings are noon-1:25 and GG is 1:30-2:15.  Attend meetings if you can; by joining you’ll receive our emails and be kept in the loop on progress.

December 17th Holiday Party Highlights

Our thanks to photographers John Bonsett-Veal, Mike Engelberger and Stacy Nemeth.


Susan Schmitz & Janet Piraino

Tim Stadelman & Dave Ewanowski

Tim Stadelman & Dave Ewanowski

John Bonsett-Veal, Wes Sparkman & Derrick Van Mell

John Bonsett-Veal, Wes Sparkman & Derrick Van Mell

IMG_3568  photo8  photo1

Photo 1: Patrick Downey, TJ Blitz & Renee Moe; Photo 3: Nick Curran at the Holiday Treats Table


Teresa Blythe Kris Ashe


Juan Lopez Charles Tubbs, Sr.

IMG_0182  IMG_3663  photo2

Photo 1: Dick Fayram, Karl Gutknecht & Ted Ballweg; Photo 2: Mike Wenzel, Gary Peterson, Suresh Chandra & Rob Stroud; Photo 3: Nick Curran, Mike Crane & Brian Koch

Jeff Bartell, Jenny Armstrong, Katie Ryan  Dick Lovell

Jeff Bartell, Jenny Armstrong, Katie Ryan & Dick Lovell

Perry & Virginia Henderson

Perry & Virginia Henderson

Susan Schmitz, Carol Toussaint & Kathleen Woit

Susan Schmitz, Carol Toussaint & Kathleen Woit

IMG_3633  photo9  IMG_3665

Photo 1: Nan Hoffman & Ted Waldbillig; Photo 2: John Bonsett-Veal & Paul Riehemann

Sharon Miemietz, Pat Jenkins & Jayne Coster

Sharon Miemietz, Pat Jenkins & Jayne Coster

Highlights from Scotch Whisky/Lew Harned Society Event at Overture Center December 15

–submitted by Wayne Glowac; photos by Gayle Langer

“Too much of anything is bad, but too much good whiskey is barely enough.”


From left: Regina Millner, Lew Harned and Brian Fick

Overture Center hosted the most recent Scotch Whisky/Lew Harned Society Fellowship Group on December 15.  Rotarians enjoyed the delightful company of each other while sampling exquisite Scotch Whisky selected by Ted DeDee.

IMG_0324  IMG_0323  IMG_0322

Photo 1: Ken & Ginny Yuska; Photo 2: Dan Dieck, Herman Baumann, Brian Koch & Brian Basken; Photo 3: Jim Ruhly & Regina Millner