Posted by Amy Skalinder
President Bob Baker opened the meeting with his usual breathing exercise, helping us all to be present.
Moha Bouacha shared a thought for the day from Rumi:
Yesterday I was clever, so I tried to change the world.
Today I’m wise, so I’m trying to change myself.
Sgt at Arms Bob Sanfilippo led us in the Pledge of Allegiance.
John Bair is a visiting Rotarian, current President of the North Chicago Rotary Club. Their club has been sponsoring scholarships for clinicians doing various studies on trauma, moral injuries, and mental health. Some of their studies were featured in Rotary Magazine last summer. He is putting together another grant request to Rotary for a mental health grant and invites our Club to join in by contributing $500, which would be matched by the District. Robert Mardirossian stated he would offer a matching gift of $250; David Grant said he would contribute the remaining $250 so our Club can commit to this now.
  • Wes Baumann reminded everyone that we will be meeting at New Trier High School next week, March 28, for a tour of the new athletic facilities. He shared a map indicating parking and where to enter the building. Pizza will be served for lunch. He noted that members of the Wilmette Rotary Club will be joining us as well.
  • David Grant shared that the Wilmette Club is very involved in migrant families coming to the North Shore and has put together a table of people to attend a benefit for this cause on April 6 at Sketchbook Brewing in Skokie. They’ll have a Venezuelan dinner from La Cocinita. All are invited to attend and support. See David if you’d like to reserve a spot at a table for 8-10 people.
Rotary Birthdays and Anniversaries
Moha Bouacha had a birthday recently – happy birthday!
And Marie Kuipers recently had her 10-year Rotary anniversary – congratulations!
Fred Schwimmer offered some entertaining humor on technology and aging.
Centennial Planning
Bob Baker started with a reminder that the celebration will be June 20 at the Community House and will include a sit-down dinner, with the caterer and menu still to be determined. Bob asked for input on whether people preferred a plated dinner or buffet. The committee is still considering how to set up the bar as well – cash bar or open bar? We think the price may be about $120 per person. Bob asked for feedback on this price point. We will not be able to finalize any of these things until we select a caterer.
Moha Bouacha stated that we need to get something out soon so that people can save the date. David Grant noted that we send out the bulletin to 330 email subscribers currently, though he noted that only about half of the audience opens the email. Wes Baumann suggested that the group review the list so all Club members know who is on it and can suggest anyone to add to our invitation list.
Debra Campbell  created a fantastic logo for the Centennial, working from resources on the Rotary brand website. She noted that it might be a good idea to print some invitations as well as send email invitations. This will raise awareness about the Club as a whole in addition to informing people about the event.
Discussion ensued about who we will invite – speakers, recipients of community grants, other Rotary Clubs in the area, Village officials. Various suggestions were offered for ways to increase our email list – it was also suggested that we create and maintain a segmented list so we can pick and choose who we send information to at various times, but it is unclear who would manage the administrative work required to do this.
It was also suggested that it would be helpful to do some kind of public relations campaign before and after the event.
The question was raised about whether we will have a speaker and various suggestions were offered including various Rotarian dignitaries and leaders. It was noted that the event will also include an installation ceremony for next year’s officers for both Wilmette and Winnetka Clubs. It was also suggested that some kind of historical display be created to commemorate our Club’s 100 years of service.
The meeting concluded with the usual recitation of the Four-Way Test.