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 Club #27802 in District 6360
We meet Wednesdays at 7:00 AM
Elks Lodge (BPOE 541)
601 Riverview Drive
Benton Harbor, MI 49022
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Write to us at:
Benton Harbor Sunrise Rotary
PO Box 1552
Benton Harbor. MI 49023-1552
 
Meeting Presentations and Stories
 
Jim Smith's efforts to promote Paul Harris Fellows added two more awards.  Shown above Felicia Smith and Mike Scheffler receive their first awards from president Brian Saxton,  These latest awards add to the awards presented during our visit to Morton House Museum; to  Dyann Chenault, her first, and repeat winners, Alice Ford, Pam Pappas and Bob Elliott. Felecia's award was a surprise gift from her tablemates.
Turn out was Great.  myTeamTriumph had a Great event.  Bob Gifford's audio-visual extravaganza was Great. Jon Wallace our emcee was Great.  Everyone had a Great time.  Check out the photos here. Thanks to all Rotarians, volunteers, and sponsors that made the event possible.  Results are posted here.
 
The club moved its regular breakfast meeting to enjoy an evening at the Morton House Museum.  President Brian Saxton was starting a new tradition to do something different on the four months each year that have five Wednesdays. The visit included a meal organized by Patrice Grant with Lee Scherwitz at the grill and members providing sides and dessert. A docent of the museum provided some history of the Morton Shipping company and the toys they also manufactured.  A tour of the home concluded the visit.
 
District 6360 Governor, Teresa Brandell is shown shaking hands with Ian Riseley, RI President for 2017-2018.  She used her annual visit to our club to reinforce this year's RI presidential theme: Making a Difference.  It starts with a challenge for every member to plant a tree. She emphasized following her late father's practice of wearing your Rotary pin every day - it starts conversations and provides opportunities to promote Rotary. She also introduced the new polio message: Drop to Zero.  With only nine new cases this year, Zero is in our immediate future. Progress from 350,000 cases per year to nine is an amazing accomplishment. Financial support is still needed to finish the job.
 
Many members and partners went sailing on Lake Michigan.  Shown above, clockwise from top left, is Cindy Kinney, looking very relaxed but not driving, and drivers: Eddie Marshall, Alan Bartlett and Momono, RYE student just arrived from Japan. Thanks to the four boat owners for providing the opportunity for a great night of sailing and Rotary fellowship: Ron Grossman, Andy Grootenhorst, Kevin Geiser and Ann Dahmer and Judd Brown. And thanks to Mike and Cindy Kinney for organizing the event and the St. Joseph Junior Foundation for use of their boathouse.
 
Rotarians and friends completed most of the repairs to make the MLK playground ready for students.  Several pieces were removed and replaced.  Lee Scherwitz took the track ride - a 12 foot section - for repair that was beyond hand tools.  See more images in the MLK Playground photo album, click here.
Momono, center, is between Aicha, who spent a last year in Japan, and Lee Scherwitz, district and club Rotary Youth Exchange (RYE) Chairman. Momono just arrived from Japan but she had already met many  members during the Rotary sailing adventure.  Welcome, Momono!  Best wishes for a wonderful RYE year in America and Southwest Michigan.
 
Quincy and Desirae are shown at Rotary Youth Leadership Academy Camp. The relaxed pose is surprising since the camp puts everyone in learning situations. Thanks to Mike Scheffler, new generations chairman, for getting our students to RYLA Camp.
Our own club's Jim Smith was our presenter this week.  Jim's passion is The Rotary Foundation.  Under Rotary president Arch Klumph the foundation was started in 1917. But the start was slow, awarding its first $500 grant in 1930. After the 1947 death of founder Paul Harris, however, memorial donations eclipsed $1 million dollars. The idea of the Paul Harris Fellowship continues this tradition of memorial donations for "doing good in the world."  Jim offered to use his points to match donations dollar-for-dollar to help all club members reach their first or next Paul Harris level of $1,000. Many checks were written that day.  Way to go Jim!
Graham Bryan is shown receiving his club banner from president Brian Saxton during his induction into Rotary.  This banner is the last of its kind as the club will design a new banner that conforms to the new Rotary design guidelines. Graham is from the UK and works at Chase as a private client banker. He is married to Meghan and admitted to having a unique family situation: one in college and one in diapers. Jim Smith is Graham's sponsor.  Welcome Graham.
Aicha Camara's Japanese still flows freely after a week at home from her Rotary Youth Exchange year in Yokohama, Japan. Today's presentation was more about the personal elements of her experience. When she agreed to the program she had two goals: become a confident public speaker and overcome her fear of roller coasters.  She started right speaking at the meeting of outbound students last July and during her time in Japan she made monthly presentation at her host district meetings, in Japanese. She clearly exceeded that goal.  The roller coast took more time but she road a few world class coaster during her last month in Japan. Aicha plans to work for a year and then pursue a college degree in International Studies, with a minor in Japanese.  Shown below she hugs a school friend and presents a flags from her hosts.
 
Rev. Dr. Oscar Varnadoe III retired from the Chicago school system and felt a calling to serve the community in Benton Harbor. His new church is part of the Michigan Conference of the United Church of Christ. His church is a "restart", taking the old Gothic church near Pipestone and Broadway. He said he could relate to Rotary's motto of Service Above Self, since he views that as Christ's command to His followers.  He is building a congregation and trying to learn how he can serve the community.  Welcome, Senior Pastor Varnadoe III.
 
Michael Mason, center, was inducted into Rotary by president Brian Saxton, right. Michael's sponsor and co-worker is Farai Rukunda, both from Leco Corporation.
 
A joyous Alan Bartlett was joined by several club members in the mid summer highway clean up. The crew, back row from left, Lee, grandson, Sue, Julie, Brian, Alan, and Dyann, front row, Lyn, new member Michael, Mike and Kyra,  not shown are Dan Utroske and Bob Mc Feeter who skipped the after party. Photo by North Shore staff.
Brian Saxton recalled his military days when "Hail and Farewell" events marked the arrival of new soldiers and the departure of friends.  Today we had the opportunity to say Hail to Aicha just returned from her year in Japan and Farewell to Jazz who will be going home to Germany next week. The picture below of Aicha is from a haunted house, one of her last adventures in Japan. Jazz loved San Francisco and marveled at the hilly terrain of the city. The club provided Jazz with a check for her last minute expenses for gifts, etc.
 
     
 
Several Rotarians and sorority sisters from Alpha Kappa Alpha spruced up our Rotary Park at Chicago and Linden.  Several children played around us and waited patiently for their favorite equipment. Their presence was our reward for the service. Thanks to the "soros" for their help.
A'Keydra Abrams is a patient advocate for the Sickle Cell Disease Association. The disease exists in communities of color especially African-Americans that may inherit the gene from their African ancestors. Sickle Cell is a disease of the blood, causing poor circulation, lack of oxygen, pain and jaundice. Flare ups often interrupt school and work and can be life-threatening.  All new-borns are tested for the trait. A'Keydra spends her days counseling families, visiting patients at the hospital and spreading the word throughout the community.  Her organization has offices at the health department; funding is by the State of Michigan and grants.
Elizabeth Ann Jorgensen, this year's Miss SwMi Teen 2017, is a junior at Eau Claire High School and taking classes at LMC. She's a runner, musician and active member of her youth group.  As Miss Teen 2017, Elizabeth has returned to her 6th grade experiences of seeing Miguel be stricken with Lukemia. She did fundraising and provide support for the family until he was in remission and returned to the 8th grade. That experience made her selection of children's cancer an easy choice for her platform. Her research showed that 250 children die each day from cancer. Many survive only to have recurrences later in life. Now she promotes Angels of Hope, (support@angelsofhope.com 586.226.3146), a non-profit that helps families deal with childhood cancer.  Even the best health insurance leaves the family with many expenses, such and travel, hotels and meals. Angels of Hope is able to help.
 
Patrice Grant passed the baton to incoming president Brian Saxton.  It's official on July 1, 2017.  Members gathered at the Grille at Harbor Shores for the annual ritual. Patrice thanked the club for its support during her term.  She cited Bob Elliott and Bob Kynast for all they do for the club.  Brian Saxton said he is ready for his second term as president.  He asked each officer to stand as he announced those who will serve with him during the 2017-2018 club year. The new officers are listed in the story here.
Brian Saxton, president
Joseph Taylor, president-elect
Mike Scheffler, president-nominee
Dyann Chenault, secretary
Debbie Goforth, treasurer
Dan Utroske, chair of club admin committee
Alan Bartlett, chair of service projects committee
Mike Scheffler, chair of new generations committee
Farai Rakunda, chair of membership committee
Kyra Utroske, chair of public image committee
Eddie Marshall, chair of fundraising and foundation committee
Brian Saxton, president
Joseph Taylor, president-elect
Mike Scheffler, president-nominee
Dyann Chenault, secretary
Debbie Goforth, treasurer
Dan Utroske, chair of club admin committee
Alan Bartlett, chair of service projects committee
Mike Scheffler, chair of new generations committee
Farai Rakunda, chair of membership committee
Kyra Utroske, chair of public image committee
Eddie Marshall, chair of fundraising and foundation committee
Brian Saxton, president
Joseph Taylor, president-elect
Mike Scheffler, president-nominee
Dyann Chenault, secretary
Debbie Goforth, treasurer
Dan Utroske, chair of club admin committee
Alan Bartlett, chair of service projects committee
Mike Scheffler, chair of new generations committee
Farai Rakunda, chair of membership committee
Kyra Utroske, chair of public image committee
Eddie Marshall, chair of fundraising and foundation committee
Larry Culby stepped in for the absence of our speaker to tell us about the MSU Extension services just down the street from his home on  Hillandale in Benton Harbor.  The Extension has 300 acres it uses for research on fruits and vegetables.  It uses more than 500 experiments each year to evaluate seeds, watering methods, fertilizers and other factors of production.  The results are presented to growers and consumers at regular sessions. This year's fruit is looking good after a scare in the spring.  The Extension is open to the public.
The club made its final contribution for this club year. The annual total was $3,700, which will help immunize 17,000 children.  Alice Ford started this year with a garage sale that raised $2,500.  The club added $1,200 from its 5K Pumpkin Run, 50/50 and an amount on behalf of speakers to the club. Thanks to Alice and the entire club for this effort to eradicate polio from the world.

Dr. Loren Hamel, MD, president and CEO of Lakeland Health, is leading the biggest rebuilding program in the hospital's history. This renovation/expansion includes new operating rooms, new ICU, four story patient wing and relocated visitor entrance and emergency area.  Interior traffic will be greatly improved, the parking garage will add one more floor and a roof for year-round covered parking.

In other news, Lakepoint apartments are filling up fast, including 60 residents physicians in four specialties, in three year rotations, and 32 families from the community. The waiting list is over 100.

Dr. Hamel explained how Medicaid works in Michigan: hospitals are assessed a contribution amount and the Federal government matches it 5 to 1.  The State does not used General Fund revenues for Medicare.  The current ACA reduced reimbursements but expanded enrollments.  Changes under consideration now are unknown.

 
Shaneil took advantage of our mentoring program to speak with two experienced nurses. The discussion confirmed her interest in the field.  She plans to attend LMC for two years and then go on to Western Michigan to complete her nursing education.  Thanks to Mike Scheffler for creating the opportunity for Shaneil.
 
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Benton Harbor-Sunrise

Service Above Self

We meet Wednesdays at 7:00 AM
Elks Lodge (BPOE 541)
601 Riverview Dr.
For mail: PO Box 1552
Benton Harbor, MI  49022-1552
United States
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Club Executives & Directors
President
President Elect
Treasurer
Secretary
President Nominee
Immediate Past President
 

News

Pam Pappas - September 5

Mike Scheffler - September 8

Bob Elliott - September 30

 
 

Lee Scherwitz - Oct 9

Larry Culby - Oct 14

Lorraine Day - Oct 14

Kevin Geiser - Oct 14

Sarah Stocker - Oct 20

 
 

Brian Tutton - Nov 22
 
 
Rotary membership gives men and women an opportunity to forge new friendships and share the rewards of helping others through volunteer service.