The District Dispatch


The Monthly Newsletter of Rotary District 6250

December Edition

Important Note: Deadline for district newsletter submissions is the 25th of each month.
The newsletter will be distributed by the first full week of the month.

District Governor's Message

Dear Rotarians,

The month of December is designated as "Family Month" by Rotary.  An emphasis on family is one area where Rotary has evolved over the years.  The Rotary Clubs in our District have increasingly recognized that club activities that include a focus on Rotary families are attractive to not only their current members but also to those younger business and professional people who need to be welcomed into our clubs for our membership to grow.  I can still recall my first Rotary experience.  At about age 8, my grandfather took me to the Lorraine Hotel's Crystal Ballroom for the Rotary Christmas party - an event geared towards the children and grandchildren of Rotarians in the Madison Downtown Rotary Club. Since that was more than 50 years ago, my memory is a little fuzzy on the details, but I remember that Santa was there, the food was great, and I got to spend some time with Grandpa. Sadly, this tradition hasn't continued in this club, but around the District, there have been clubs that have told me about family activities and family events.  It is a trend that I hope continues.

This being December, it would be another opportune time for each of us to consider our year-end gifts and include one to the Rotary Foundation to help our respective clubs reach their foundation goals. Just in case you missed this in my newsletter last month, you can contribute to the Rotary Foundation on line here:

In response to Super Storm Sandy, our District Foundation has received funds for disaster relief.  We have at least two districts in the northeast region hardest hit by the storm who have been assisting those in need, primarily in New York and New Jersey.  If your club would like to pitch in, checks should be made payable to the Rotary District 6250 Foundation and mailed to the district treasurer (and district foundation assistant treasurer, Dick Spencer at this address:  Dick Spencer, Ash, Baptie & Company, LLP, 500 South Second Street, Suite 200 - La Crosse, WI 54602-1508.

Club Visits and the District Bell
On November 2, the traveling bell went from La Crescent  back into Wisconsin and currently resides at the La Crosse Valley View club.  I understand that another club has already advised Valley View that it is coming to get the bell in the first week of December.  If you haven't heard about the District Bell, click here and read up.

My family and I wish all of you a joyous and rewarding holiday.

Peace Through Service

Rob Stroud
District Governor 2012-2013
Rotary District 6250    

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District News, Events and Announcements

Registration Open for Midwest President Elect Training (P.E.T.S.)

MIDWEST  P.E.T.S. - President Elect Training
March 8-10, 2013
Westin Chicago Northwest
400 Park Blvd.
Itasca, IL 60143

What is Midwest PETS?
Midwest PETS is the combined efforts of seven  Wisconsin and Illinois Rotary Districts for training of incoming Club Presidents.The purpose of the presidents-elect training seminar (PETS) is to develop and assist club presidents who have the necessary skills, knowledge, and motivation to lead an effective club.

Who should attend Midwest PETS?
All Rotarians who have been selected by their club to serve as Club President next year. Also included are district trainers, district leaders, assistant governors and facilitators.  There are fees to attend PETS so all District leaders should contact their District leadership to determine qualification for reimbursement at the district level.
This is a very special and meaningful time for presidents-elect and the training is designed specifically for PE's for their year as Club President. PETS training is a required meeting for all PE's. Attendance Fees of the Club President are paid by the Club in their dues to the District.  If a president-elect is unable to attend, they must contact their governor-elect for direction.
Who should register for PETS?
All attendees must register for PETS. Don't forget to also register for hotel accommodations if required.  You will be directed towards loding registration at the end of your PETS registration.

Visit the Midwest PETS website for more information on:

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Rotary Gets Ready to Explore Lisbon

Rotarians from around the world gather each year to exchange great ideas, connect with old and new friends, have fun, and advance the work of Rotary.

The 2013 RI Convention will take place in Lisbon, Portugal, 23-26 June.

From the bustling House of Friendship to breakout sessions to preconvention meetings, the RI Convention is your way to connect with the family of Rotary. 

Those of us who attend will have the chance to see the broader family of Rotary.  Nothing brings home the internationality of Rotary quite like the Rotary Convention. 

The RI Convention offers unparalleled opportunities for networking in person with Rotarians who share a commitment to Service Above Self. 

Visit the International Convention Website and register today to secure your spot.

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District Trainer Position Needed

An important district leadership position will be opening up July 1, 2013.  Because our clubs and district experience changes in leadership every year, preparing our leaders for their terms of service is essential.  For this reason our district has an important position called the District Trainer.

This Rotarian is responsible for:

  • Chairing the district training committee
  • Working with the District Governor and Governor-Elect to
    • Develop and implement effective annual Presidents-Elect Training
    • Develop and implement effective annual District Team Training
    • Develop and implement effective annual District Assembly training
    • Assist with developing the District Rotary Foundation Grant Management Seminars
  • Attending annual Rotary Zone Training for Trainers
The District Trainer should be an active member of their club, be or have been involved in a profession or vocation related to training or education and also be passionate about the goals and mission of Rotary.

If you or someone you know would be interested in applying or obtaining additional information for this important position, please reply directly to DGE Dean Ryerson at or DGN David Warren at   The candidate selected will have an opportunity to work and learn with our current District Trainer, Michelle McGrath until her term expires on July 1, 2013.


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Short Term Rotary Youth Exchange for Summer 2013

Did you know that Rotary has an alternative to the long-term exchange program for high school age students? STEP (Short Term Exchange Program) is a 1 month exchange program where a student from the US is matched with a student abroad. Each of the two students spends a month abroad at each other’s home, enabling the two students to spend a total of two months together. It is a great alternative for students who are unable to participate in the long term program. There is no cost to the club, and minimal costs to the student – a $250 application fee plus the flight and spending money.

A few key points of the program:

• A participants’ family needs to be able to host a student in their home during the same summer that their son/daughter goes abroad.
• Countries which participate in STEP are more limited than the long term program, but still many options in Europe and South America are available. 

Help spread the word to recruit strong candidates age 15-19. If you know any of the foreign language or social/world studies teachers at your local high school, please forward them the attached informational flier and encourage them to contact me for more information. More information including applications are available on the Short Term Youth Exchange webpage.    Applications (downloadable from the district website) are due February 28th for next summer.

Janine O’Rourke, STEP Chair
Fitchburg/Verona Rotary


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Zone 28 News for Districts and Clubs

Click here for the latest edition of the Zone 28 Coordinator Newsletter!

Happy Holidays to you and your families.  Thanksgiving and the month of December mark a special time for family and friends.  How appropriate that December is Rotary's "Family Month".  I hope that you all take the time to observe what family means in your personal, professional and Rotary life.  Through our service, we truly have the opportunity to make life better for so many families, including our own.

This month's issue of the Zone 28 Rotary Coordinator Newsletter includes the 5-year Membership History for all of our Zone 28 Districts.  This chart, coupled with the Club-by-Club breakdown within each of our Districts is a valuable instrument that we should all be using as we continue to keep membership attraction, engagement, retention and new Club development in the forefront of all of our Clubs.  Click here to read on...

Best Regards,
Mary Beth Growney Selene
Zone 28 Rotary Coordinator, 2010-2013
Rotary International Director, 2013-2015


Club News, Events and Announcements

Do you have an upcoming Club Event or accomplishment that you would like to announce? Send your pre-written article to:  Click view a Calendar of Club Events.

Rotary After Hours LaCrosse Focus on Literacy

The District's newest Rotary club has formed a partnership with the School District of La Crosse to focus on literacy.  Click here to read more about thier program.

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RI News

The Rotarian Magazine

The Rotarian Magazine is our link to the greater Rotary world. The pictures and stories tell us of the wonderful work that is being done, in and through Rotary, to make the world a better, safer and a more peaceful place…all because we are advancing the key elements of social justice, health projects, and educational opportunity and alleviating the dire effects of poverty.

A person is not free if they are hungry. A man is not free when he has to watch his children die because of the lack of clean water or adequate food. A mother will not be free if her sick child cannot receive medical care and when people are not free they will seek social justice even if it means going to war to achieve it.

Our magazine, paid for in our RI dues, is not junk mail. It makes you and me “literate” in the great story of Rotary. Read it. Share it with others. Drop it off in a public area where literature is offered, a dentist's reception area, the waiting room at your local hospital or when you go to your accountant's office to pick up your tax filings. Plant the seeds of Rotary by sharing our great story.

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Update on Annual Giving

New RI Foundation Donation Forms

Club executive members can now download a Multiple Donor Form that is pre-populated (filled out) with details of club members including their ID number. This form is on at member access. Club presidents and club secretaries have access to this form. Also club treasurers and club Rotary Foundation chairs can get this form if they have been registered on member access by the president or secretary. Select the club members who have donated and add the amount of each donation. The new form makes it easy to forward donations from a group of club members who contribute weekly, quarterly, etc. More Info.


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Foundation Reports

Each club in District 6250 has established a foundation goal and the question is how are the clubs going about the achieving those goals? Have each of the clubs done an every member enrollment? Successful clubs take the time to ask each member to make a pledge commitment to the Rotary Foundation. Fulfilling that pledge might involve a quarterly billing by the club secretary/treasurer or participating in the direct deposit transfer from the Rotarians checking account to the RI Foundation account or it might mean a monthly charge to a credit card. Successful clubs establish a process that allows their members to both make and fulfill the commitment.

Click here to view the updated Club Goals Report!

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Attendance Report

Reporting Tool for District Attendance

Check out the reporting tool for District Attendance!

Clubs can view each month’s attendance in a visual graph. Also Club Secretary’s can request access to update their information directly online!

Click here to submit your club's attendance report

Click here to see the full Attendance Report.


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