Rotarian Lee White Celebration of Life Update

Dear Family and Friends,

Hello! I hope everyone is doing well during this strange and difficult time. Based on the state of our world right now, there is no way that we are going to be able to hold Lee’s celebration of life ceremony on June 13. It is incredibly important to my family that we are able to get closure over Lee’s  passing but we want to honor her in the way that she deserves and that she wished for. So, we will definitely hold a service at Rockland Community Church at 2:00 pm and a big party at Lakewood Country Club from 4:00-9:00 pm at some point. As of right now, we have rescheduled Lee’s celebration of life for August 29, 2020. However, we need to wait until it is safe to bring a large group of people together and until those people who are coming from out of town feel comfortable with flying. At any rate, whenever we hold it, we would love to have you. Once we are able to pin down a safe date, I will get the details out to you.

In the meantime, consider visiting Lee’s obituary home page at All Veterans Funeral and Cremation where the service date has been and will be updated. For easy access click HERE. This will take you to her obituary page. From there, we would love it if you would leave a message or a photo on her tribute wall. Since it is possible that this date will need to be pushed out further, we will also email you again once we know the final date that gets selected.

We are so sorry that we haven’t been able to have Lee’s service and celebration during this uncertain time. Whenever that time may be, we hope that you remember the love that Lee shared with you and come to her celebration of life.

Love,
Jim White

The Rotary Club of Denver’s 2020 Donna Hultin Excellence Award Winner!

The Donna Hultin Excellence Award was created by the Rotary Club of Denver in 2008 in honor of Donna’s retirement from Denver Kids, Inc. and her service to Rotary.  It is designed to recognize one high achieving graduating high school senior from Denver Kids who is college bound.  Qualifications include demonstrated academic achievement, excellence in attendance, community service, leadership ability and a positive attitude.  This prestigious award is now given in Donna’s memory.  Congratulations to Ariana Ricalday​​​​​​​, our 2020 Donna Hultin Excellence Award winner!

This Excellence award includes a $500 scholarship from the Rotary Club of Denver. In addition, the Donna Hultin Family has generously contributed an additional $500, bringing the total scholarship $1,000!

Ariana Ricalday has been a Denver Kids student for four years, and in those four years, has shown much passion, dedication, and an incredible work ethic.  Ariana is graduating from KIPP Denver Collegiate High School, a very rigorous school where she had maintained a near 4.0 GPA.  As a stellar student, Ariana was also nominated to be part of PEAK Achievers, a weekly group that leads her high school in community service and activism.  She’s also involved with Tiger Leaders, a small student leadership group which works with the principal to promote student engagement and school spirit.  Additionally, Ariana was chosen to tutor fellow classmates in math in her sophomore year of high school, won multiple Student of the Year awards in composition, and maintained perfect attendance for three years.  As Ariana’s Educational Counselor said, “she is one of the few students who is consistently taking initiative to challenge herself by setting new goals.  Whether she identifies a goal around her relationship to others or an academic goal, Ariana actively works towards them with a genuine desire to improve and with a charming sense of humor.”

Ariana’s accomplishments do not stop at the school doors; she has maintained active employment since 2018 and has been involved in her community through a traditional Mexican folklorico dance organization. Through this organization, Ariana has been able to perform in order to raise funds for funeral expenses for a local family, as well as raise funds for necessary surgeries that children in her community needed.  She shows immense dedication in this group and it shows!  They won 1st place in the 2016 Rocky Mountain Folkloric Competition – youth division.

Ariana is a first-generation high school graduate and college student.  She is looking forward to starting at the University of Denver this fall, where she will work to earn her degree in biology with a minor in dance.  Ariana hopes to become either a nurse or teacher one day: two professions suited wonderfully for Ariana’s character and community-oriented vision of her future.

In her award essay, Ariana stated that, “I push myself out of my comfort zone, and I believe that’s something that will help me take full advantage of opportunities in college.”

Congratulations to Ariana!

Poliomyelitis by Gladys (Carlson) Spong

Family History with Polio
by Denver Rotarian Rich Spong (Gladys son)

The following article was prepared by my mother about her experiences in surviving polio at the age of 10 in 1923.  She lived on a farm near the very small town of Buffalo in Southeast Kansas, and going to Kansas City to a large hospital for five weeks was a very unusual experience for her in addition to dealing with the consequences and survival from polio.  She lived a full life until she was 80.  She did have a limp with one leg shorter than the other, but she made the adjustment to live with that impairment.  She was a stay-at-home mom to raise my sister and me.  She died of chronic lymphatic leukemia after a short illness.

Poliomyelitis
by Gladys (Carlson) Spong

The International Society of Polio Victims met November 13, 1985, to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the discovery of the Salk Vaccine.  The word polio is a clipped form of Poliomyelitis; only the latter term and “infantile Paralysis” were used for the very rare cases in the early 20’s.  I had never heard of the disease when I became a victim; children today hear of polio as a vaccine.

In the fall of 1923, I began to have a stiffness in my back as I sat at my school desk.  I could not bend to either side to select a book in the desk, so I would slide forward in my seat until I could see inside my desk.  I had no idea what caused the problem.  It was only by retrospect in adulthood that I realized my back stiffness must have been an early poliomyelitis symptom.

Daddy came to get us at school with a team and lumber wagon on a cold and rainy October day.  I was extremely chilled during the wagon ride.  A fever developed.  Dr. Riley was called to our country home.  He could not diagnose a reason for my ailment.  My illness continued through the week; sometimes I couldn’t get up from a sitting position or a knee would give out when I walked.

One evening while my parents were milking the cows, the aroma of freshly baked bread tempted me to venture to the kitchen for a sample.  I got to the cabinet by bracing myself on furniture and walls.  My hand slipped under the dish towel cover and broke off some crust of the second loaf.  As I grasped the crust in my hand, my knees buckled under me and down I went to the floor.  All attempts to pull myself up failed, so I returned to the bed by crawling, hoping Mother would not scold me for breaking off a tasty morsel of warm bread.  The next morning, Mother called the doctor about my condition.  I did not have a fever, so Dr. Riley told mother, “Send Gladys back to school.”

Mother replied, “But Doctor, she isn’t able to go to school; she is having problems with her knees.”

After some thought, Dr. Riley requested, “Bring her to my office right away so I can check her condition again.”

My left knee repeatedly gave out.  Mother and Daddy supported me as I walked to the car and into the doctor’s office. I was lifted to the patient’s table, my legs dangling.  With the side of his hand, Dr. Riley tapped my legs just below the knee.  There was no reflex there or at my ankles.  The doctor looked up at my parents and said, “Get Gladys on the next train to Kansas City and the Bell Memorial Hospital (now University of Kansas Medical Center).  I will meet you there in the morning to see that her case is in the hands of the top doctor.  Get some formaldehyde candles to fumigate your house before the other children return to it.”

Arrangements were made for Grandpa Anderson to come stay with mother.  Our minister and evangelist were to be at our home for a noon meal, so my mother put a note on the screen door telling them of the situation and requesting their support through prayer.  Daddy and I were soon on the train en-route to Kansas City.  A first train ride should be exciting, but I had mixed emotions, wondering just what was to happen in the days ahead.

The Union Depot in Kansas City was overwhelming to me-spacious with so many people.  Men cleaning high windows looked like tiny flies because they were so far away.

A taxi ride to the hospital was another new experience which led to many happenings in the hospital.  After checking in at the hospital, a nurse took me from Daddy to a children’s ward.  She began to undress me.  Off came my wraps, then dress, petticoat, bloomers, and panty-waist.  I protested, “ I don’t take these off when I go to bed.”  Mother had us children sleep in some underthings so we wouldn’t get chilled if we kicked off the covers at night.

I was really shocked when the nurse pulled off my long stockings and next my long underwear.  I felt as if I were walking in a tent as I was led to a crib-type bed wearing only a big, starchy gown.

The outcome of that protest was that after sleeping in only a gown while in the hospital for five weeks, I refused to ever sleep  in underthings again.  It took some time to convince my sisters that wearing only a gown was a much more comfortable way of sleeping.

Dr. Riley arrived early the next morning and brought Dr. Major to my bedside.  I was transferred to a private room in quarantine for three weeks.  Daddy had to wear a white tie-around gown when he came into my room and disinfect his hands after visits.

The paralysis continued to progress until my whole side was paralyzed on the third day at the hospital.  Dr. Major would put his hand under my head, lift upward, and my body would raise from my heels as if I were a post.

Dr. Major and an intern wheeled a stretcher to my bedside, moved my stiffened body onto it, then wheeled me up the elevator to a lecture room.  A gallery of medical students were waiting for their class session.  Dr. Major appeared beside me with an open Bible and began to read.  I was filled with fear.  “What is happening here?  Here I am prone on a stretcher covered with a white sheet to my chin, my body paralyzed on one side and a Bible being read to an audience.”  I soon realized that my doctor was teaching a lesson on poliomyelitis to the interns, beginning with a possible polio case from the Bible.  I would have preferred that he continue to read instead of raising my body to illustrate his lecture.

My spine was tapped three times and the nurses gave me massages daily.  My paralysis gradually left, but I was unable to walk.  Two nurses would take me up and down the hall to help me learn to walk again.  On the first tries my legs just dangled without control.  Little by little, I regained some use of them; I could limp along with the aid of one nurse.  What a thrill to learn to walk again!

The last two weeks of my hospital stay were in a women’s ward.  With my regaining walking skill, I roamed about the ward to visit with the other 13 patients.  I learned their names and something about their ailments.  Observation of some of the nursing details prompted me to say, “I will never be a nurse.”  That statement didn’t hold as in middle age I took a nurse’s aid course and found the floor-training duty very satisfying.

One day Dr. Major and a bone specialist from Wichita came to my bedside.  Dr. Major said, “Gladys, how would you like to go home for Thanksgiving?”  Because I had been in the hospital five weeks, it was exciting news to me.

The next day, I dressed in a new, red wool serge dress that Mother had made for me.  I felt like a  new person to be in a dress, shoes, and stockings and able to walk again.  I was tired of hospital gowns, robes, and house shoes.  Proud of my red dress with the pleated skirt, I walked around the ward to tell each of my patient friends goodbye.

Mother had come to be with me the last two weeks.  We were to leave by taxi for the Union Station after lunch.  As we waited, full of excitement about going home, a nurse came with a wheel chair and asked me to sit in it.  I had been walking unaided for several days.  “Why should I be put in a wheel chair?”  I thought.

Without a word to Mother, I was wheeled away, up the elevator, and into a surgery room.  They lifted me onto an operating table and began to wrap gauze on my left leg, then spread it with plaster of Paris, more gauze, and plaster until my leg was encased in a heavy cast.  The purpose was to hold my heel tendon in place so it wouldn’t tighten during my first weeks of walking again.  I was told that it should be on my leg for three weeks, when I could return to the hospital to have it removed.

A nurse returned me to Mother in the wheel chairs, my leg encumbered with the awkward cast.  I had anticipated waling in the train station, into our home for Thanksgiving and back to school.  I was wheeled to the taxi and through the Union Station to our train.  I hobbled about with the cast during three weeks of school.  Finally, there was another train trip to Kansas City to get the cast removed before Christmas.

Mother continued to massage my legs daily for many months.  Dr. Major’s instructions for other therapy were for me to do much swimming and skating.

My whole left side is smaller than the right side and the left tendon restricts the action of my left foot.  Restricted ankle action had caused many falls for me throughout the years.  I’m grateful for a good recovery.  Much credit is due Mother for her faithful massaging and Dr.. Riley for promptly sending me to the hospital and getting the top doctor for my case.  Dr. Major did not accept credit for my recovery.  His comment was: “Higher powers than ours have had a hand in your recovery.”

Thanks to the Salk vaccine, polio cases are rare today in the United States.

Call to Action: COVID-19 Disaster Relief

Dear Members of Rotary Club of Denver,

As announced during our April 2nd club meeting, we have important news! In response to the current coronavirus pandemic and urgent needs in our broader community, the Denver Rotary Club Foundation (DRCF) and Club 31 have identified funds to be donated to immediate causes.

Utilizing its financial resources, DRCF has responded decisively to past floods, hurricanes and other emergencies, and it is doing it again with COVID-19. The foundation trustees approved a $5,000 disaster response grant, plus $5,000 more from unallocated “new project” funds as part of the 2019 grant cycle. Fifty years ago, Cub 31 Rotarians established our foundation and over the years it has given millions of dollars to fund essential local and international Rotarian-supported projects. When it comes to the impact of DRCF, Club 31 can be very proud! As we finish our 50th anniversary celebration year, what better way than to support our community as we have done in the past and will continue to do in the future.

In addition, the club board of directors approved a $6,000 club contribution to DRCF to be added to the above grants for immediate COVID-19 response. This amount represents a sum equivalent to the meal cost savings over the four week period as in-person meetings were canceled. This morning we learned that District 5450 awarded us $1,500 of additional matching funds.

This totals up to $17,500 so far, and we think club members might want to participate individually and increase our impact. We invite you to make a contribution of which 100% will go towards COVID-19 response. We already have our first contribution of $1,000 to get us started! Here is a DRCF dedicated link to make a donation:

CLICK HERE to Donate Now

As for specifically how the money will be distributed, Carter Sales, incoming President of DRCF, has assembled a committee of Rotarians who will evaluate the best opportunities for impact and authorize the immediate distributions of funds. If you have suggestions for the committee and want to be of help to Carter, please reach out to him directly. They plan to begin their work next week.

If you did not join us the last two weeks as we held Thursday club meetings online, then please try to next week. Same time, different place. Bring your own lunch! If you have had trouble with the technology, then please reach out to Darlene or Lauren. Yesterday we had 97 participants including Rotarians and guests. It’s surprisingly dynamic and FUN!

In service to you and our communities,

Alison Clark-Hardesty
President, Denver Rotary Club Foundation

Jim Johnston
President, Rotary Club of Denver

Rotarians Doing What We Do Best!

Call to Action During COVID-19
I’ve been thinking a lot about the aging and the disabled population that we have here in Denver and how much a lot of them are struggling at the moment as a result of this social isolation.

While this isolation is necessary to protect each other and our community, there are a lot of people who aren’t able to do things like go out to get groceries, pick up their mail, or make sure that they have the right kinds of supplies to weather this storm. On top of that, the people that would normally be able to sit with them to keep them company aren’t being allowed in right now, which makes loneliness a significant concern.

These are people who are both members of our Club and members of the community at large…
I think we have an opportunity to really make a significant impact in our Club, on this community, and keep our distance socially, if we organize for some of the following service opportunities.

  • Grocery delivery
  • Calls, letters, etc. to help fight the inevitable loneliness that I’m sure they’re going to be feeling
  • Picking up mail or packages to be sent out or retrieved
  • Making sure that urgent supplies are provided for
  • And, of course, a funding drive to pay for things that they may not be able to afford at the moment

Some people are going to be more comfortable with more of these things than others, and that’s ok. But if we have some people who are willing to pick up groceries from the store and drop them off on doorsteps, some people willing to make calls, etc.

We can do something pretty amazing for some pretty vulnerable populations in Denver – inside and out of our Club.

Please fill out the survey below to let us know how you would like to serve during this time.

Call to Action Survey

Thank you for your service,
Ian Campbell

President-Elect Nominee & VP, Communications Team

_______________________________________________________________________________

How Can We Help You? 
We have teams of Rotarians who have stepped up to help each other and ready to serve.  We just need to know how we can help you!

This is an incredibly difficult time, there’s no question about that.  The need to isolate is wearing on all of us and revealing needs where we never thought we might struggle.

While this isolation is necessary to protect each other and our community, we know that many of us aren’t able to do things like go out to get groceries or make sure they have the right kinds of supplies to weather this storm.

Fortunately, this is where Rotarians shine.  We have teams of people ready, willing and able to help make sure your groceries get to your doorstep, make sure that you have the things you need to make it to the other side of this shelter in place time, and even just to pick up the phone and chat for a bit if you’re bored and need someone to talk to.

I know that it’s never comfortable to ask for help, but we’re here to step up and serve you.  You’ve done so much for us, now it’s time for us to give back.

Please fill out the survey below to let us know how we can help you during this time.

Let Us Know How We Can Help!

Thank you for your service,
Ian Campbell
President-Elect Nominee & VP, Communications Team

Celebrate Scholastic Art Awards – A Message from Chair Todd Bacon

by Scholastic Art Awards Chair Todd Bacon

It felt like someone had knocked down our sand castles and kicked the sand in our faces.  The Awards Ceremonies for the Scholastic Art Awards were all set for Saturday, March 10th, at the History Colorado Center, and the day before, History Colorado made the painful but necessary decision to close the museum.  Just two weeks earlier, ten volunteers had spent three days curating and installing the exhibition, which was to be on display until March 28th. Suddenly, in an instant, all the work by the students, their teachers, and the Scholastics volunteers was locked away inside the museum.  

Having recently retired, I was able to participate in Scholastics even more than I had in the past.  Like any endeavor of this sort, the more involved one is, the more one understands and appreciates all the effort that goes into it.  I was invited to participate as a judge in photography. The judging was held over a three-day period at the UCD Visual Arts Department offices in LoDo.  In all, there were 42 volunteer judges and proctors enlisted in this critical and rewarding process.  

On the day that I was a judge, all the judges in the different media met in a hallway.  As we introduced ourselves (see photo #1 below), I was struck by the high level of qualifications and the commitment of the people gathered there.  Most were retired with 25 or more years of teaching experience at the high-school or college level. For example, Robert Dorsey, who had been scheduled to speak at our annual Rotary luncheon, is a fine-art photographer, a retired art teacher, and the former chair of the Fine Arts Department in the Mapleton School District, which has 18 schools in North Denver.  

The 1,002 entries in photography were divided in half to make the judging more manageable.  We worked in teams of two judges and a proctor, who helped us with the mechanics of the digital judging process and to answer any procedural questions.  We ended up giving out 118 awards, which shows the highly competitive nature of Scholastics.  

Once the students and teachers were notified of the winners, the art needed to be prepared for the exhibition and delivered to the History Colorado Center.  For the first time, I was able to participate in the installation process. In past years, I would go to the museum for our luncheon and see all the art on the walls of the atrium without giving much thought as to how it got there.   I never realized or appreciated how much work goes into displaying the artwork. 

The artwork was sorted by category, such as painting, drawing, fashion, sculpture, and photography.  Then, it was determined where each category would be installed in the museum. After that, the pieces were laid out on the floor in groupings, perhaps by color, theme, or style, to make some sense of how to hang the pieces in the “salon style” necessary to fit everything into the allotted spaces (see photos #2 and #3 for the photography curating prior to hanging).  Fortunately for me, I was working with volunteers who had been through this process many times before. All I had to do was grab my hammer, a nail, the right piece of art, and the right placard and then bang away at the direction of the more experienced people.

I made a visit to the museum just before it closed down to take some photos of the exhibition, when a group of students and teachers from Pinnacle Charter High School happened to come in (see photos #4-10). The four teachers and the students manifested great excitement in seeing their pieces hanging in the museum, and they took turns photographing each other in front of their work.  To me, this is what Scholastics is all about. Sadly, this public sense of community and pride in achievement among the students, their family members, and their teachers are what we missed this year with the cancellation of our events.  

Next year, hopefully with the financial assistance of the Denver Rotary Club Foundation, we’ll be able to help the students build their sand castles once again.

(Update: Colorado’s 79 Gold Key winners in photography went on to compete at the national level in New York City, where they ended up bringing home 5 Gold and 4 Silver Keys!)

To view the Best in Grade, American Vision, and Portfolio winners, please click here.

Club 31 Welcomes New Members

 

Kimsey Self
Founder & Owner
Progressive Health and Wellness

Date Joined:  12/17/2019
Rotary Sponsor:  Ben Allen & Evening Membership

 

Kimsey Self is the founder and owner of Progressive Health and Wellness.  Her passion for health began at an early age and has never waned. In addition to holding a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from Fort Lewis College, Kimsey has completed the Master Nutrition Therapy program from the Nutrition Therapy Institute (NTI) and is currently pursuing her PhD in Natural Medicine from Quantum University of Integrative Medicine, a school specializing in degree programs in natural and integrative medicine based on the science of quantum physics.  She has also completed additional training in functional medicine, including Functional Blood Chemistry, Functional Brain Chemistry, and Integrative Psychology. and still regularly attends medical and business conferences.

Kimsey strongly believes that education is paramount to success. She has been a guest speaker on Denver’s 9NEWS, CBS Radio, the Michael Brown KHOW radio show, and many other podcasts and media outlets. All credentials aside, her clients describe her passion as “infectious”, her humor as “contagious”, and her methods as “effective.”  Kimsey is all about getting results while having a good time doing it.

In her spare time, Kimsey loves running with her dog, hiking, yoga, snowboarding, and spending time with friends and family.

 

Kate Richards
Membership Sales Manager
Downtown Denver Partnership

Date Joined:  2/18/2020
Rotary Sponsor:  Chad Tyler & Membership Team

 

Kate Richards has been managing the membership sales department at the Downtown Denver Partnership for three years.  Before this role, she was at the Parker Area Chamber of Commerce as their Membership Director.  Kate is a graduate of the University of Northern Iowa, having studied public relations, event planning and tourism.

Kate and her husband Nick have lived in Colorado for nine years this August.  She and her husband recently welcomed their first child, Benjamin, in July and they are celebrating their 9-year wedding anniversary next week.

In their free time (which is little these days), they enjoy snowshoeing and hiking (they have tackled fifteen 14ers so far!) and have been known to brew a few batches of beer for friends and family to enjoy.

Kate is excited to join Rotary 31 and is personally tied to the cause, her Aunt Sally was one of the last recorded cases of polio in the state of Iowa.  She has a deep respect for our work and is eager to get involved.

For additional information about new members, please log into our membership database at www.dacdb.com.

Pride-A-Tarian: PolioPlus Chair Peg Johnston

 

At the Saturday, February 8th PolioPlus fundraiser, one of our esteemed colleagues, Peg Johnston, 27-year Club 31 Rotarian, was awarded a Paul Harris bust for her tireless work on Rotary’s 35-year campaign to eradicate polio from the planet. This is but one of Peg’s many awards for her varied forms of exemplary service to Rotary. This bust was originally awarded to Rotarians Grant and Marlene Wilkins in 1997 at an Arizona district conference for their legendary polio eradication work.  This award will be a traveling award that Marlene, the Rotary Club of Denver and our District 5450 have determined will periodically be granted to a Rotarian in the district who exemplifies the dedication to polio eradication that Grant and Marlene demonstrated for us to follow.  Congratulations Peg and thank you for your continued work to eradicate Polio! 

 

COMMENTS FOR PAUL HARRIS POLIO AWARD | Saturday, February 8, 2020
Read by Greg Podd, Past RI Vice President
Written by Seth Patterson, Past President, Rotary Club of Denver

I have the distinct honor this afternoon of presenting an award to a Rotarian in our District who, other than Grant and Marlene Wilkins, has probably done as much or more than any other to eradicate polio.  But first, a little preface about Grant and Marlene.

As you may recall, on May 19, 2018, the day that my District Conference opened, our dear friend and inspiring Rotary leader, Grant Wilkins passed.  Grant was a champion of eradicating polio from the very beginning, having contracted polio on a business trip as a young businessman with a wife and three young children at home.  Although Grant’s throat muscles became paralyzed, he was blessed and after months of therapy, he recovered his ability to eat solid food and speak and he lived a blessed life for the next 67 years.  Unfortunately, although his wife Diane only visited Grant after he was released from the polio isolation ward, she contracted polio and within 24 hours became paralyzed from the neck down.  Diane spent two and a half years in an iron lung in the hospital and another eleven years at home with a portable chest respirator, where she was an amazingly cheerful and very involved parent.

Several months later while calling on a Denver customer, Grant was truly blessed when Marlene Siems became a part of his life.  Grant noticed Marlene’s ever-present smile, asked her out and after several months, on Grant’s 39th birthday, they married and enjoyed over 50 wonderful years of marriage that included many personal and Rotary adventures around the world.

Grant and Marlene’s Rotary work, particularly their legendary work to eradicate polio is well-known, so I will not repeat it here, but rather get on with my purpose of addressing you this afternoon.

During one of PDG Abbas Rajabi’s last visits with Grant, he gave him a Paul Harris bust that he and Marlene had received in 1997 from an Arizona Rotary District for his District Conference keynote address about Rotary’s efforts to eradicate polio.  A Sedona Rotary Club produced the bronze casting for the Paul Harris bust often given to their Rotary keynote speakers.  Grant asked Abbas to use the bust to raise money for Polio Plus or honor a Rotarian for their extraordinary Polio Plus efforts.  After consulting with Marlene and the then leadership of Club 31, it was decided to award the bust, as a periodic traveling award, to a District 5450 Rotarian whose outstanding Polio Plus work is deserving of high recognition

The Rotarian who we will recognize today was a strong advocate along with Grant and Marlene in their constant efforts to eradicate polio from the planet and continues to be.  This 27-year Rotarian is highly accomplished in Rotary in many ways, including:

  • Supporting Rotary International (“RI”) and The Rotary Foundation (“TRF”) as a
    • Benefactor
    • Major Donor
    • Paul Harris Fellow and Society Member
    • White Hat Society Member
    • Recipient of the RI Service Award for a Polio-Free World
    • Recipient of TRF District Service Award for “outstanding service in promoting TRF and its goal of world understanding and peace”
  • In our District and this member’s Club and Club Foundation, offering further support as a:
    • Member of the Bequest Society
    • Club Foundation Gold Fellow
    • Club Rotarian of the Year
    • District Polio Chair from 2011 to 2015
    • Past Club Board Director (twice), past Chair of TRF Committee and others
    • Service on various Club committees, particularly Programs, Peach Sale, Membership and as the continuing Chair of the Club’s Polio Committee to name just a few
  • Lastly, and this fact will surely give away this member’s identity, this Rotarian Co-Chaired, with her son and the current President of the Rotary Club of Denver, a 91st birthday party for Grant with well over 100 people from our Rotary family on World Polio Day in 2017, which also raised over $175,000 for Polio Plus.

Yes, Peg Johnston, a 27-year member of the Rotary Club of Denver, is recognized today for her tireless work to eradicate polio.  Peg, please come up to accept this award.  As you walk up, it is my sincere hope that the importance of this award begins to fade soon, as we approach the final days of polio on our planet.

Club 31 Welcomes New Members!


Jeff Mason

Partner/Associate Broker​​​​​​​
Benchmark Commercial, LLC​​​​​​​

Date Joined:  1/22/20
Rotary Sponsor:  Returning Member/Membership Team

 

Jeff brings more than 20 years in commercial furniture and over ten years as a real estate broker to his role as a Benchmark Commercial co-founder. Clients appreciate how this experience allows Jeff to quickly assess the space and layout needs of their businesses as well as his attention to detail and follow-up. Before Jeff’s five years at Rare Space, his previous experience includes work with Steelcase and OfficeScapes, where he was responsible for planning, ordering, delivery, installation, and overall project management and integration of the clients’ technology and business goals into each space through the use of furniture. Jeff has deep roots in the state of Colorado, beginning with his great-grandfather, who was a miner in Central City, Colo. True to that Wild West heritage, Jeff and his wife, Colleen, spend a portion of their free time on horseback. Jeff is a University of Colorado graduate with a degree in Finance, and he currently serves on the board of the CU Boulder Denver Area Alumni Association. Jeff is also an Eagle Scout and an avid outdoors-man, so not only are you in good hands working with Benchmark Commercial, the co-founders are likewise great to have around should you ever find yourself lost in the wild.


Mark Wipper

Director of Major Gifts
Regis University

Date Joined:  `1/22/20
Rotary Sponsor: Transferring Rotarian/Will Snider

 

Since joining Regis University in August, 2019, Mark’s enjoyed living in Lakewood with his wife Jane.  Together they have five children ranging in age from 43 to 26 and five grandchildren who range in age from 10 to four months.  Needless to say, they have quite a blended family who live near and now farther away.  After growing up in Cleveland, OH, Mark returned after receiving his BA in History from St. Lawrence University in way upstate New York.  For over 30 years, his career was spent in banking and investment management before joining Case Western Reserve University (where he received his MBA in 1990), as Director of Library Development.  Trading a big city for a really small town, Mark joined Ohio Northern University in Ada, OH (home of the Wilson Football Factory) as Director of Development for the Getty College of Arts and Sciences.

In addition, Mark has spent summers in Norther Michigan on a beautiful lake sailing, swimming and spending time with lifelong friends.  Having skied, hiked and camped for many years in Colorado, he is now enjoying being able to spend time in the mountains again.  Mark is looking forward to continuing his 30+ years as a Rotarian with the Rotary Club of Denver.

For additional information about new members, please log into our membership database at www.dacdb.com.

Congratulations and Welcome aBoard!

On January 16, 2020, members of the Rotary Club of Denver elected four Rotarians to serve as Directors on the Club’s Board for a three-year term beginning July 1, 2020.  Directors whose terms expire June 30, 2020 are Ben Allen, Melissa Bowen, Susan Brushaber and Chad Tyler.

 


Colleen Cozad
Realtor/Broker-Associate
Bradford Real Estate

 



Hassan Latif
Executive Director/Founder
Second Chance Center

 


Alison Oyler-Mitsch
Owner
Fresh Events & ReFresh Studios

 

 


Matt Isola
CEO & Founder
Generation Exchange

 


Our thanks to Brian Sweet, Louise Westfall, Harriet Downer, Rich Spong and Chuck Everill for serving on this year’s Board Nominating Committee.

 

 


Due to the resignation of former Club member and trustee Barb Ritchie, the board of trustees, at its October 9th meeting, appointed Sandy Purcell to fill this vacancy and was duly elected by members of the Denver Rotary Club Foundation at their January 16, 2020 meeting.

 


Sandy Purcell
Branch Manager
Raymond James Financial Services