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Monday, May 31, 2010

How to ignite your optimism

PNW District... Third Quarter Meeting...May 21-22, 2010...It was a busy weekend.  I think every time we come together for a quarterly meeting it is busy because we have so much to cover and we have traveled so far to do so with such little time. Some districts struggle to get a recommended quorum at their meetings and I am proud to say that is not a challenge that we have had this year. And for that, I have to thank the wonderful commitment of our Optimist Club presidents and secretary-treasurers.  Thank you for understanding how district meetings help make your club more vibrant at home.  Thank you for sharing your optimism.

This quarter we set out to Ignite your Optimism. Our topics included:

Scholarship Contests
  • The PNW District finals of the Optimist International Oratorical Contest - With eight contestants from our four regions, our top finishers winning $2,500, $1,500 and $1,000 respectively were Noel Lai, Vancouver BC, Selin Jessa, Coquitlam BC, and Jessica Glaser, Scio, OR.  
  • The PNW District Communications Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (CCDHH) - In an effort to make the contest more accessible to all clubs in the district, we held the CCDHH contest during our district meeting.  Three contestants from the Tucker-Maxon School, sponsored by the Portland NE Optimist Club, competed with Anastasia Zyhtaryuk winning a $2,500 scholarship.  Rebecca Sanford and Zach Little placed second and third.   
  • The PNW District Essay winner was revealed to be Allison Farrell, 14, representing the Hillsboro Optimist Club.  
Business Session
  • The District Board of Directors reviewed, debated and passed a new policy that limits fundraising at district meetings to the Optimist International Foundations, Childhood Cancer Campaign, and District fundraising events as approved by Optimist International. 
  • We heard reports from Committee Chairs with a special emphasis on the District Qualifiers for the Optimist Junior Golf Championships.  The Canada qualifier was taking place at the same time as our district meeting.  The US Qualifier will be held June 21, 2010.  Every club may sponsor junior golfers to play.  Golfers may also enter at large.  Click here for more information. 
  • International Convention Ambassador Al Kersey encouraged newly elected club presidents to attend the International Convention with a special emphasis on the hospitality and learning provided to attendees.  Click here for more information. 
  • Ed Murphy III, Governor-elect announced that the zone alignment would remain the same in 2010-11  and the election of lt. governors-elect took place.  Congratulations and thanks to the following Optimist Club members for agreeing to serve: Zone 3 - Ellen Julian, Zone 5 - Renee Wallace, Zone 6 - John Chamberlain, Zone 7 - Larry Blackburn, Zone 9 - Don Bohrn, and Zone 10 - Charlie Kissler.
  • Clubs were encouraged to submit their officer-elect reports and strive to be an Honor Club.  That distinction is within reach for every club in the district. 
Once again, we placed special emphasis on membership growth and participation
  • Lorraine Coots, Membership Chair recognized every member who had brought in two or more members this year and then went on to make presentations to those who have done just a little more including: Larry Blackburn, Caldwell Optimist Club - 4 members;  Dora Gulvin, Sandy Optimist Club - 5 members; and Jared Lowell, Lebanon Optimist Club - 6 members. 
  • Linda Jackson, Governor, recognized the clubs that were currently submitting their club bulletins to the communications team.  Noting that writing a weekly bulletin was hard, she also gave recognition to Donna Bohrn for the personality that she adds to the Twin Falls Blab.  Find out how to submit your bulletin and read the latest editions by clicking here.
  • Angie Bridge, Bulletin Editor and good will ambassador made it easy for all of our first-timers to be involved. 
  • Scott Keller, President, Portland NE Optimist Club facilitated a relationship building session to help clubs identify how to engage with their communities.
  • Gay Enyeart, Leadership Development Chair led a panel of past district secretary/treasurers to help us learn how to step-up to leadership and how to let go.
The opening session recognized some club projects that ignite our optimism and make us feel great to be a part of an Optimist Club
  • Twin Falls Optimist Club, President Don Bohrn - Administrative Professionals Day
  • Salem Optimist Club, President John Chamberlain - Country Kids Relays
  • Vancouver WA Optimist Club, Project Chair Steve Enyeart - Camp Clean-up and MOB
  • Sandy Optimist Club, President-elect Dora Gulvin - Oratorical Contest
  • Oregon City Optimist Club, President Lisa Normand - Pioneer Family Festival
  • Coquitlam Optimist Club, Program Chair Al Kersey - Curling Program and Optimist International Seal of Approval
  • Boise Noon Optimist Club, President Ken Wall - Football Program and Member Coaches
  • Caldwell Optimist Club, Board Member Joe Shreve - PAL Boxing and the Silver Belt Invitational
  • Newport Yaquina Bay Optimist Club, Gary Williams President - Foster Kids Shopping Program
  • Portland NE Optimist Club - Boyd Yaden, JOOI Chair - Optimist Kids Day at Oaks Park with Candlelighters
  • Abbotsford Optimist Club,  Gwen Settle, Member - Matching grant for the Childhood Cancer Campaign during the Abbotsford Optimist Club 25th anniversary celebration
  • Jerome Optimist Club, President Angie Bridge - Special Needs Fishing Derby
Governor Linda Jackson brought the opening session to a close with the video from the Jerome Optimist Club  Easter Egg Hunt.  Held this year in freezing temperatures, blowing winds, and snow, the video reminds us what Optimist Club service is all about.  

As I wrote this post, I thought of so many other things that happened during the weekend.  People that should be recognized and the people who weren't there and I missed seeing.  You really owe it to yourself and your Optimist Club to come to our District meetings.  They are busy, but you choose what you want to do.  My bet is you will choose to do it all.  

Thank you so much to Shirley Hilts, Lt. Governor, Zone 6 and all of the clubs, chairmen and committees that made this weekend special.  Thank you especially to the students, parents and Optimist Clubs and members that took part.  You ignite my optimism.  Really, you do.  

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