The District Dispatch

The Monthly Newsletter of Rotary District 6250

October 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,

On my recent Governor’s visit to the Rotary Club of Madison, I was speaking about the progress Rotary and its partners have been making in the fight against Polio.  I pointed out that Polio existed in only four countries: India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Nigeria.  I had no sooner finished my sentence when someone in the audience said that Polio had just returned to China.  They had just seen the report that morning in the New York Times.  Apparently, the virus was re-introduced from Pakistan.  This shocking news is a reminder that no one is safe until everyone is safe from the scourge of Polio.  Do you think that all the children in the United States are getting proper vaccination against Polio?  They are not.  Polio has faded here from the consciousness of the general public.

The Polio virus returning to this country could be a plane flight away.  We must continue our efforts to wipe Polio from the face of the earth.  Rotary, along with its partners, The World Health Organization and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, continues with your support to immunize children and educate families to defeat Polio.  Millions of children are receiving vaccinations every year.  Although our enemy is persistent and dangerous, your ongoing efforts through club fund-raisers and your personal donations are making the crucial difference.

The slang term for a quarter is “two bits”.  One of the definitions of a “bit” is a thing of nominal value.  In your pocket, two quarters represent four things of nominal value.  You cannot buy a candy bar, a can of soda, or a cup of coffee with your two quarters.  However, in the hands of The Rotary Foundation, those two quarters will buy a vile of vaccine that will prevent a child from the scourge of Polio.  In your pocket are two quarters, four things of nominal value.  In the hands of The Rotary Foundation, those two quarters are priceless.  I keep a jar on my bedroom bureau into which I put my pocket change.  I don’t miss it and I have been surprised how quickly the change can add up.  It’s my extra gift to the fight against Polio.  I simply can’t look at two quarters in the same way anymore. 

I want to thank the Clubs and Rotarians at District 6250 for your ongoing determination to fight Polio and your generosity through club fund-raisers and individual gifts in this important humanitarian effort.  Keep up the good work, and consider using a jar for your pocket change for an extra gift for the children of the world.

All the best,

Chuck Hanson
District Governor 2011-2012
Rotary District 6250    


District News, Events and Announcements

Call for Nominations, District Governor 2014-2015

The District Nominating Committee, at the direction of District Governor Chuck Hanson, is announcing the call for nominations to the position of District Governor for Rotary year 2014-2015.  Each club in the district is entitled to nominate one or more of its members who meet the following criteria at the time of selection.  

A governor-nominee must:
     Be a member in good standing of a club in the district 
     Have served as a president of a club for a full term  
     Demonstrate willingness, commitment, and ability to fulfill the duties and responsibilities of the office of governor    
     Demonstrate knowledge of the qualifications, duties and responsibilities of the office of governor

The current line of governors for Rotary District 6250 and their respective years of service are as follows:
2011-2012  Chuck Hanson  La Crosse     
2012-2013  Rob Stroud  Madison     
2013-2014  Dean Ryerson  Madison West Towne Middleton

Each club in the district will receive from the offices of Morgan Data a set of nomination papers which must be completed and returned to the office not later than 15 November 2011.
    Morgan Data Solutions
    2830 Agriculture Drive          
    Madison, WI  53718

Interviews of the candidates will take place not later than 15 December 2011 and the governor informed of the decision of the nominating committee.  Any questions concerning either procedure or the completion of the forms can be directed to the chair of the nominating committee:
Dean Dickinson, 608-788-1003 (H) or 608-397-5888 (c), email:

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October 24th Designated World Polio Day

Rotary International has designated October 24 as World Polio Day.  What a tremendous opportunity to reflect on all that we have accomplished in our fight to rid the world of this dreaded disease!

In 1985 we made a promise to the children of the world—we promised them that we would eradicate polio from the face of the earth.  On the day that we made that promise there were more than 120 polio-endemic countries throughout the world.  During the year of 1985 more than 350,000 children were paralyzed by the polio virus.

We have come so far!  Since 1985, Rotarians have raised more than $900 million for this noble cause and, with that money, the Rotary Foundation has been able to provide polio vaccine to more than 2 billion children.  Today, polio eradication is within reach.  Only four countries—India, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria—remain polio endemic.  India has reported only 1 new case of polio this calendar year; Afghanistan has reported only 18 cases; and Nigeria has reported only 26 cases.

We have just entered the third and final year of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Challenge.  The Gates Foundation has agreed to contribute $355 million to our polio eradication efforts if we can raise an additional $200 million on our own.  As of September 1, we have raised $185 million.  It is imperative that we reach our goal as soon as possible.  To help us reach that goal, The Rotary Foundation has asked every Rotary club to raise $2,000 this year for polio eradication.  District 6250 has been a leader in the fight to eradicate polio.  We will continue to be a leader until polio has been eradicated.

As long as polio threatens even one child anywhere in the world, children everywhere are at risk.  Once we eradicate polio, however, we can stop vaccinating.  The World Health Organization estimates that the eradication of polio will generate medical, health care and social service savings in excess of $1.5 billion every year.  Our gift of polio eradication will truly be a gift that will continue to give forever. 

Please help us finish the job that we started 26 years ago so that someday soon we can celebrate the fact that polio has been eradicated from the face of the earth and so that someday soon we can celebrate the fact that no child will ever again be paralyzed by polio.

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Thanks to Visioning, District 6250  Clubs Look to Future Eyes Wide Open

Where will your club be in five years? How many members will you have? What are your priorities? Do you have a plan in place for attracting young business and community leaders to your club? How will non-Rotarians describe your club?

Good questions all.

If the answers don’t come easily, it’s likely that your club has not taken advantage of the
strategic planning process known as Visioning. If that’s the case, you’re not alone. But this free-form brainstorming session is a critical first step in charting the course for the future of your club.

The Rotary Club of La Crosse recently participated in the Visioning exercise, and we’re applying what we learned to retool our club to meet the ever-changing needs of our members – and more importantly,  those who benefit from the good works in which Rotarians are engaged every day in our local communities and around the world.

During the four hour meeting facilitated by four Rotary-trained facilitators, 30 members of our club were asked to share their opinions related to 12 pre-determined focus areas. Club size, attributes, the Five Avenues of Service, public image and membership were just a few of those covered. The discussion was framed by three rules: no idea is a bad idea, consider the impossible, and silence is not an option. Simple-bimple.

At the end of the evening, 246 unique ideas were captured on 48 flip charts. The challenge, then, was to take this information and reduce it to digestible, actionable bits. After much discussion to winnow and sift the merits of each and build consensus as to where we want to be five years from now, three priorities were established in each of the focus areas. Those priorities are the foundation upon which our strategic plan is being built.

Any organization that aspires to grow must look for – and seize – new opportunities that align with identified priorities. Rotary Clubs are no different. If we want to increase the vocational classifications represented by our members, achieve membership targets, grow the number of Paul Harris Fellows awarded or the number of humanitarian service activities in which we participate, we must keep those priorities squarely in our sights.

At the height of his storied career, ice hockey great Wayne Gretzky attributed his success to “Skating to where the puck is going to be, not to where it has been.” Unfortunately, the continued vitality of our clubs will not come through intuition. Instead, it will be the result of consequential thinking informed by information. And that, my fellow Rotarians, is the value of Visioning.

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Rotary International Convention, Bangkok

From May 6 through May 9, 2012, members of Rotary International will be attending the 103rd Rotary International Convention in Bangkok, Thailand. 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. 


Rotary Welcomes You to Bangkok 2012 from Rotary International on Vimeo.

I hope you will consider joining me and a number of other Rotarians from our district. From now until December 1, the registration fee is $160, which is as lower than it has been in years. You can register on line (visit for information and discount codes) and you can take advantage of a special airfare promotion on Cathay Pacific from Chicago to Hong Kong to Bangkok, leaving May 1 and returning to Chicago on May 11, following an overnight stay in Hong Kong. Our zone has also arranged for a half-day city tour, boat ride and dinner during the convention. Past District Governor Dean Dickinson is the contact person for this event.

If you have never attended an RI Convention, talk to someone who has.  I'm confident that he or she will tell you how inspiring and exciting it was, no matter which RI convention he or she attended.  I encourage you to experience an RI convention for yourself and this one promises to be one of the best.

If you have never visited Asia, this is a wonderful opportunity to experience a fascinating culture with friendly people, wonderful cuisine and exotic scenery. Thailand happens to be the only country in the world ruled by a king born in the United States. It is a country that caters to tourists and a city that is as cosmopolitan as any in Asia. Combine the speakers, fellowship, workshops inherent in a  Rotary convention with an exotic destination and you have a compelling opportunity coming up next May.  Sign up soon and make your plans to join me and thousands of Rotarians from around the world in Bangkok.

Rob Stroud, DGE

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Bangkok Convention Airfare and Dinner Cruise Packages

Savat-di-khap!  Welcome to Bangkok!

The 2012 Rotary International Convention will be held May 6-9, 2012 in Bankgkok, Thailand.  In addition to a very low registration fee of $160, there are special airfare packages to get you there and Zone events once you are there!

Click here for special airfare information (pdf).

Click here for information on the Bangkok City Tour and Dinner Cruise on the "River of Kings" hosted by Zones 28 & 29 (pdf).

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Great Information from the Zone 28/29 Newsletter

The Rotary Zone 28/29 Newsletter provides great information on club and leader resources, member retention and more.  Click here to view the latest edition.

The Zone 28 Rotary Foundation Newsletter can be downloaded here!


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Update on Changes With Your Rotary Foundation 

Some notable changes are occurring within your Rotary Foundation.  The following message is from Anita Rieder, Senior Annual Giving Officer of the Rotary Foundation:

I am happy to report that The Rotary Foundation is improving its donor recognition and contribution reports in order to provide better customer service and improve donor satisfaction.  There are a few changes that I thought you should know about in order to respond to questions and concerns.

First, effective 1 October 2011, Foundation recognition points will be awarded for all contributions to the Annual Programs Fund, PolioPlus, or the sponsor portion of a Foundation grant.  One Foundation recognition point will be given for every US dollar contributed to these funds, which can then be extended to others to help them become a Paul Harris Fellow.  Donors will no longer need to be a Paul Harris Fellow themselves before Foundation recognition points are awarded.  

Second, new and improved reports will be available to club and district officers on the Member Access Portal by the end of September, including:

•         Benefactor Report
•         Club Recognition Summary Report
•         Donor History Report
•         Every Rotarian, Every Year Eligibility Report
•         Monthly Contribution Report

Other forthcoming enhancements include a new TRF Contribution Form, Recognition Transfer Request Form, electronic tax receipting for contributions and additional contribution/recognition reports.  Donor recognition processing time and associated costs will also decrease as the benefits of a new system are fully realized.

For additional information on all things related to the Rotary Foundation, please contact Mary Kessens, our District Foundation Chair at or David Warren our District Annual programs Chair at

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Rotary Foundation Changes the World-Locally and Internationally 

Jessica Haven works with people with disabilities in Madison, WI.  She was selected to participate in the Spring 2011 GSE to India.  Her experiences in India have changed her life and she is now on a course to make changes in a wider sphere.  When you give to The Rotary Foundation, your dollars support people and projects that change the world.  In the following article Jessica shares the beginnings of her journey with the Rotarians who made the journey possible.  Jessica is not alone in this journey.  Our district has similar examples of people supported by Rotary Foundation investments who are making a difference.  I am grateful to Jessica for sharing with us the following story of her journey to make a difference in the world.

Click here to read Jessica's story.

Submitted by Mary Kessens, PDG

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November is Foundation Month 

November is Rotary Foundation Month.  Has your club planned for a “foundation” program that will bring to your membership the great stories about how our foundation is enabling Rotarians to make a difference in the lives of people around the world?  Your Area Foundation Coordinator is the go to person for your club.  The AFC’s are more than happy to present a program for your club. 

Area 1 & 2  Jacquelyn Lahn     
Chippewa Falls, Eau Claire, Eau Claire Morning, Menomonie, Menomonie Sunrise, Black River Falls, Granton, Marshfield, Marshfield Sunrise, Medford, Neillsville, Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin Rapids Sunrise

Area 3-10  Dean Dickinson                                         
Caledonia, Holmen, La Crescent, La Crosse, La Crosse After Hours, La Crosse East, La Crosse Valley View, Onalaska, Sparta, Prairie du Chien,  Richland County, Viroqua

Area 4-5-6  Debbie Fox-Schroeder              
Baraboo, Portage, Reedsburg-Western Sauk County, Sauk Prairie, Wisconsin Dells, Beaver Dam, Columbus, Horicon, Mayville, Waupun, De Forest, Lodi, Madison-East Monona, Sun Prairie, Waunakee

Area 7-11   Robert Gooze
Fitchburg-Verona, Madison, Madison Breakfast, Madison West Towne Middleton, Madison Sunrise, Madison South, Madison Horizons, Mount Horeb, Oregon

Area 8-9     James Raymond          
Fort Atkinson, Jefferson, Lake Mills, Stoughton, Watertown, Beloit, Edgerton, Janesville, Janesville Morning

“The mission of the Rotary Foundation is to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill and peace through the improvement of health, support of education and the alleviation of poverty”.


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Friendship Exchange (RFE) to India 

Your Rotary D6250 invites you to become part of an outbound Friendship Exchange to Tamil Nadu, India, February 1-10, 2012. This RFE “cultural immersion” experience is like a “GSE for Rotarians”.  Our RFE group (5 to 10 Rotarians/partners) will be hosted by Indian Rotarians in their homes with very interesting local experiences in each community visited. The cost is approximately $2,000 (air travel plus incidentals). We will meet as a team later this fall to answer all questions. TIME IS SHORT, so if interested please contact PDG Bob Bendiksen at (608) 788-0268; Cell: (608) 386-6194; Email: .  We are looking for several more Rotarians (partners welcome) to join our “outbound” RFE team to India on February 1-10, 2012. YOU ARE INVITED!

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Australian Group Study Exchange Team Looking for Host Clubs

A Group Study Exchange Team from Australia will be in our District between May 9, 2012 and June 10, 2012.  The Team will be here for the District Conference which is on June 8 and 9 in La Crosse.

We are currently looking for Rotary Clubs in our District that might be interested in hosting for a four night stay.  Primary responsibilities would include finding host families in the area and creating a schedule/itinerary for the Team.  Businesses, social events and other points of interest would be part of the exchange. An occupational/career day would also be included in the visit and this would be when the Team members visit with an organization or business that is comparable to what they do for their respective careers.

The following careers will be represented by the Australian Team:
     Management Consultant
     Dairy Farmer
     Retail Sales

This is a wonderful opportunity and I encourage Clubs to become involved with this exciting experience.
Please contact me if you have any questions or if I can be helpful in any other way.  Thank you!

Tom Marshall
Group Study Exchange Chair
715 423 1921 

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Team Selected for Australian Group Study Exchange

The Group Study Exchange Team consisting of four Team members and the Team leader have now been selected and will be leaving for Australia on March 14, 2012.  They will return home on April 16.  The Team is made up of the following individuals:
     Frank Garritano – Sponsored by the Rotary Club of La Crosse
     Sarah Kinnard – Sponsor is yet to be determined
     Jennifer Shermo – Sponsor is yet to be determined
     Kjerstin Lang – Sponsored by the Valley View Club of La Crosse
     Team alternates include:
     Alyson Holmay and Keith Torgerud – Both are from the La Crosse area

The Group Study Exchange Team Leader is Kelly Barton, a Rotarian with the Rotary Club of La Crosse.
The alternate Team Leader is Jerry Kember, a member of the Rotary Club of La Crosse.
The Team will be participating in a variety of orientations and informational sessions prior to their departure.  They will be traveling to the Gold Coast in Australia and will be hosted by several Clubs in that area.
Further information may be obtained by contacting Tom Marshall, Group Study Exchange Chair at the following address:

Tom Marshall
715 423 1921

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Youth Exchange Has Started Their Year

Our Rotary Youth Exchange year has started out with a great orientation weekend for our inbound students. It was held at Camp Rotamer, a camp owned by the Janesville Noon club. We also had a few Rebounds for a reunion and to help us with the orientation of the new inbound students. Our Rebound students are always such a help. The Janesville club did a spectacular job of getting the camp ready for us, providing tons of food and plenty of firewood. It was cold at night plus we always need a fire at night to make s ’mores. Thanks to all of them. The students had a great time.

Our outbound interviews will be held November 6 at the Clarion in Baraboo. This month, clubs should be helping students prepare for those interviews. It is important to remember that the number of Outbound students for next year is limited by the number of clubs who are willing to host next year. This month I am happy to say we had two more clubs sign up to host. We do need more clubs to host. It is not too late to have your club commit for next year. Please contact Judy Levine at if your club is interested.

Linda Buchs-Hammonds, our district assistant chair and, now, youth exchange trainer, will be holding once a month webinars. If you are interested in attending those, please contact Linda at All Youth Exchange Officers and Youth Exchange Counselors are automatically invited.

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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:


Fitchburg Verona Club Hosts Wine Tasting Fundraiser

Come join the Fitchburg / Verona Rotary Club for our 2nd annual Wine Tasting Fundraiser for our Orphan Train orphanage in Peru. Last year we raised $1800 to support the 20 girls at Casa Hogar Orphanage. Come join us as we try to raise even more in 2011. 

     Thursday, November 10: 6:30 – 8:30 pm
     Holiday Inn Express & Suites, 515 W Verona Ave, Verona

Tickets available at the door for $15. Appetizers served along with a variety of white and red wines. There will also be a Silent Auction. Contact Janine O’Rourke with any questions; 608-577-6395.

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Watertown Club Hosts Beer & Wine Tasting

The Watertown Rotary Club will be having a Beer and Wine tasting on Saturday, October 29th  from 1-4:30.  Beer, wine and appetizers will be served.  There will be a silent and live auction.  This is our biggest fund raiser of the year.   Venue is Watertown Country Club  1340 N Water St.  Watertown, WI  Price is $35.  Contact: Sandee Macht 920-988-0452 or 414-256-1159.  Email  

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Rapids Sunrise Club Hosts: Betty Boop Rotary Fun/Walk

The cartoon character, Betty Boop, was “born” to our local Wisconsin Rapids artist – Grim Natwick!  Fortunately, Ms Boop, has started making an annual visit to Wisconsin Rapids with an end-of July celebration in her name.  She has also inspired the Wisconsin Rapids Sunrise Rotary Club to have a Fun Run/Walk to raise money for Polio Plus.  We considered many possibilities for raising funds, but we chose a run/walk because:
     - Club members had experience with run/walks
     - Up-front costs are low
     - Linking a healthy activity, open to all levels of ability and all ages, to a health issue like a Polio-
     - Free world really appealed to us.

Holding our event with a new annual community festival helped raise awareness and generate media , business, and public energy about Polio Plus and Rotary.  Business sponsorships helped keep the cost for participants at a minimum and provided a substantial portion of the funds raised.

This is our second year hosting this event.  It has taken  5-6 Rotary volunteers 30-40 hours over 6 months to do the coordination and set up; and 30 – 40 day of race volunteers, to manage the event.  This year we raised just over $6,000 which has been forwarded to Rotary International to match funds provided by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

We are already looking forward to the third year of the Betty Boop festival and the third Rotary Run/Walk, for a Polio-Free World.  We expect to have a bigger event every year, because it’s one of the few Wisconsin runs held mid-summer!

For more information contact:
Tom Schneider – 715 423 2626


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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