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Thursday, April 8, 2010

Optimist Clubs are still my favorite thing!

At the halfway mark of the year, I want to take a moment to say thank you to all of the great Optimist Club and District leaders and Optimist Club volunteers that we have serving our communities in the Pacific Northwest District - Optimist International.  It's because of you that Optimist Clubs are my favorite thing.

I am happy to report that we are growing, both in number of members and in projects. One look at this blog tells you that our Optimist Clubs are engaged in communities.  There are community service projects, Optimist International programs, club events and celebrations highlighted, several new ideas each week. 

Like all districts and all service clubs, our membership is up and down.  The loss of Meadow Ridge, BC, Coos Bay and Ontario, OR clubs are difficult membership losses to overcome.  But the Optimist Clubs of Mason County, Pasco Tri-Cities and Caldwell are trying to make up for those losses and then some.  They have each added more than ten new members this year.  A number of clubs are right on track to be recognized as Honor Club.  In fact, every club still has the opportunity and ability to earn that distinction.

What does it take to be an Honor Club?
  1. Membership growth - Clubs with up to 74 members must have a net increase of 5 members.  Clubs with 75 or more members must show a net increase of 1 member.
  2. Finances - District and International dues must be paid by September 30, 2010.
  3. Service Projects - Club must complete 3service projects (verified by the District S/T) and submit at least one CPA book to Lorraine Coots, Membership Retention Chair by September 30, 2010.
  4. Club reports - Officer-elect report must be submitted by May 20, 2010 and the President's Pride Report must be submitted by September 30, 2010. Both may be completed online. Please call me at 208.861.2310 if you need help navigating the online system. 
  5. Attendance at District Meetings - Club president or Board member must attend 50% of all District meetings and be verified by District S/T as being present.
Being recognized as an Honor Club is a way to say thank you to your club members for the work they do every year.  It is a little gesture that signifies your Optimist Club is serving your community with the intention to be around for many years to come.  An Honor Club replenishes itself with members, is financially sound and is conducting programs that make a difference in their community. It is an honor to be Honor.

As we look forward, we have some exciting activities in store.  On May 21-22, we will gather in Newport, Oregon for our Third Quarter District Meeting where we will be wowed by our Oratorical and CCDHH Contestants.  Our district training team will be back with great membership and leadership ideas and we will elect our lt. governors for 2010-2011. It's a time for celebrating our past, present and our future. 

But before we arrive in Newport, your Optimist Club will have elected new officers for the coming year.  Please be sure to submit your club officer-elect report online by May 20 and bring those newly elected officers and board members with you to the meeting so they can begin to develop plans to lead in the coming year. 

Again, many thanks for all that you do as Optimist Clubs.  I truly believe that the world is a better place because of our organization.  ~ Linda Jackson, Governor

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