Club Information
Welcome to our Rotary Club of Mesa West!
Mesa West
Transforming Communities, Creating Opportunities, Impacting Youth
Thursdays at 12:00 PM
Via Zoom or in-person
Doubletree, 1011 W Holmes
Mesa, AZ 85210
United States of America
Our hybrid meetings are held weekly on the 1st thru 4th Thursdays of each month. The meetings are broadcast via Zoom to include all, whether attending virtually or in person.
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Highlights of July 27 Meeting
Opening and Welcome - President Colleen Coons
  • Jim Schmidt offered the Invocation.
  • Jack Rosenberg led the Pledge of Allegiance.
  • Jeanie Morgan who was attending on-line was asked to lead everyone in reciting The Four-Way Test:
Steve asked Ted Williams to draw the winning raffle ticket, which was held by Ray Smith.  After briefly shuffling the cards, Ray's attempt to draw the Ace of Clubs from the deck resulted in disappointment for Ray.
Introduction of Guests 
  • District Governor Elect Michelle Holcomb was introduced.  She prefers to be known as DG2B.
  • Colton Cagle was introduced as the President of Phoenix Rotaract Club.
  • Josephine Sili was introduced from Westwood High School Interact Club.
  • Adrian Bojorquez, also from Westwood HS Interact, was introduced.
  • Mohammed Jdir was introduced by Polo Santiago.  Polo said Mohammed has attended club functions in the past including ringing the Salvation Army bell at Bass Pro during the 2022 Holiday Season.  Polo thought it was time to invite him to attend a club meeting.
  • Attending via Zoom were Deb Koeneman and Jeanie Morgan.
Ace of Clubs Raffle - Steve Ross
  • DG2B Michelle Holcomb announced Rotary Leadership Institute (RLI) Session 1 would be held in Sedona Saturday, July 29 where members can get acquainted with Rotarians from other clubs and begin to learn about all things Rotary beyond the club level.  She also mentioned that registration is open for Rotary Leadership Academy (RLA).  Typically candidates for RLA are "tapped" by District leaders who recognize the qualities in someone who would be an ideal candidate for future district leadership positions.  RLA goes deeper and involves a greater time investment than RLI. 
  • Polly Cady said a membership application had been received from ShaneWhite, saying it would be forwarded that afternoon to active club members for the 7-day review period required by club bylaws.
  • Shelly Romine made a few service related announcements.
    • July 25 Mesa West volunteers worked alongside volunteers from a couple of other groups to pack a total of 4900 meals at Midwest Food Bank.
    • August 1 Mesa West Rotary would be sponsoring another blood drive at the YMCA.  Shelly said the Red Cross is desperate for donated blood.
    • There will be another hands-on service project scheduled in August.  Details were not available at the time of the meeting.
  • Ed Koeneman invited members to report to Terminal 4 at Sky Harbor Airport Saturday, July 29 at 5:45 to welcome a youth exchange student who would be arriving on American Airlines.
  • Logan Harper reminded members of three common themes from the Visioning Exercise a year ago - asking that we keep those in mind during the rest of the meeting to see how we are moving toward them:
    • Increase collaboration with Rotaract and Interact (Youth Focused)
    • Better understand and create impact to the Mesa Community
    • Implement Mentorship Style Programs (Youth and Members)
Mesa West Rotary North Star Presentation
CLICK HERE or on the images to see the slides used during this portion of the meeting.
Mesa West Rotary is a club of People of Action.  Those who have accepted leadership position this year are:
  • Club Administration Chair - Diane Ware
  • Membership Chair - Polly Cady
  • Public Image - Kayla Mudge
  • Community Service - Pam Cohen and Shelly Romine
  • Youth Service - Ed Koeneman
  • International Service - Ray Smith
  • Vocational Service - Bryan Goetzenberger
  • The Rotary Foundation - John Pennypacker
  • Mesa West Rotary Foundation President - Jim Schmidt
  • Executive Secretary - Jeanie Morgan
  • Board Observation - John Pennypacker
  • Presidential Advisor - Don LaBarge
  • Club Secretary - Carla Krcmarik
Our Financial North Star
The Mesa West Rotary Foundation board reviewed what we hoped to do.  They have approved a charitable spending budget of $73,000.  We will be volunteering in the community.  The board wants to hear from members about where some of our community service budget should go.  Some speakers ask for donations.  Each quarter members will have seven days to vote on which charity we give $500 to.
The International Service budget is up 27% from last year.  The increase will help us fund a needed audiology clinic in Guaymas.
The vocational service budget will remain the same.
Youth Services Spending is up considerably.
Membership - Polly said the commitee is not the only group in the club to bring new members in.  They are looking for ideas on where and how to publicize Mesa West Rotary in the community.  We should invite some of our speakers to join.  Members should invite people as guests who they feel would make good Rotarians.  If unsure how to go about that, the membership committee will be glad to offer suggestions.  Dick Myren commented that there was an excellent article in the Rotary magazine about maintaining membership.  He strongly urged members to look it up and read it.
Ed Koeneman was standing in for Kayla Mudge.  He said we have both Instagram and Facebook accounts.  We want to get the word out and increase our visibility.  They will work on developing a photo archive.  They hope to publish member spotlights and new member spotlights.  They are also looking into Volunteer t-shirts - something you can get down and dirty wearing.
Community Service- Shelly Romine has volunteered to insure we do monthly service projects.  In April - Maternal and Child Health Month - during our club assembly we will be making blankets to be given to Children's Hospital.
Colleen joined Mesa Leadership so she could help our club better.  July 26 was the first gathering of this year's class of participants.  The first person Colleen met was a business owner.  When Colleen explained what we were going to try to accomplish with McKinny Vento, he was immediately intrigued.  His own family had economic challenges as he was growing up.  His youngest sister did not graduate high school.
Ray Smith reported that the Guaymas Hearing Mission is slated for November 8.  They will be taking vans again this year.  Participants will be given a choice.  Come back to Arizona on Saturday after a hard days work on Friday.  Or - stay and have a play day on Saturday and come back to Arizona on Sunday.
Alan and Polly will again represent Mesa West at the US Mexico Friendship Conference.  They have attended at least three conferences in the past and have become fast friends with a Rotary couple from Ori'Zaba Mexico.  The conference will be in Prescott this year in late October.  Grant projects are presented and Allan will have a budget of how much he can available to commit to support one or more projects. 
A final International project will be our participation in a global grant initiated by Phoenix Rotary 100 to save mothers and children in Kenya.
Vocational service will be 6.8% of the total budget.  We hope to bring in some recipients to share their stories.  Logan had the opportunity to observe one recipient being interviewed.  He said it was extremely moving.
54.1% of the total charitable spending budget will be dedicated to Youth Services.
The McKinney Vento project will need a significant budget the first year.  It is hoped that - over time - funds to support the project in future years will be gathered from sources beyond our club.
We have been approved for a district grant to purchase shelving and equipment to help the Working Warriors at Westwood High School better sort, store, and distribute the items that are donated to them by Amazon to provide them to organizations in the school system and community who serve those in need.  The program teaches career readiness.
Ten Westwood HS Interact Members and four McKinney Vento students will be sponsored by Mesa West Rotary to attend Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA).  Attending RYLA helps participants learn to like themselves, which improves mental and emotional health.  
We will be sponsoring two inbound and two outbound youth exchange students.  In addition, we will be housing students not sponsored by Mesa West.  Our club continues to embrace and support the Rotary Youth Exchange Program.
When Ed Koeneman was club President, he went to visit the Westwood High School Interact Club.  At that time, Andrea Murphy was the faculty sponsor.  She told Ed she knew of a freshman who needed to go to RYLA.  That is when Ed met Colton Cagle.  Colton attended RYLA as a Freshman and went back as a Junior Counselor when he was a Sophomore.  Colton was President of the Westwood HS Interact Club during his Sophomore and Junior years.  He was an Ambassador on the Interact Crutches 4 Africa trip during the summer between his Junior and Senior Year.  During his Senior Year, Colton served as Interact District Governor.  Following graduation, Colton waited a year before starting college so he could go on a Rotary Youth Exchange trip to Holland.  He had to come home early in the spring of 2020 due to COVID.  In the fall of 2020, Mesa West awarded a $2,000 scholarship which Colton used to purchase a computer to use during his college years.  He stayed active in Rotary volunteer activities helping with Virtual RYLAs during COVID isolation.  He became involved in Rotaract and helped revive the Phoenix Community club where he currently serves as President.  Colton was presented with Mesa West's first $2,000 Rotaract scholarship which he will use to help with his final semester at ASU.  He will graduate in December with zero student loan debt.  
Colton expressed tremendous gratitude.  Mesa West Rotary has been part of his journey since he was fifteen.  He has learned very well that one can achieve their dreams while helping others fulfil theirs.
Josephine Sili and Adrian Bojorquez provided a report on their Interact Ambassador trip to Mexico.  After showing brief videos, Josephine, who was team captain on Day 5 - said the trip changed her outlook on life.  She is from a low-income family.  Before going on the trip, she was always aware of what she did not have.  Since going to Mexico, she sees what she does have.  Those in Mexico were genuinely grateful for what they have.  It has helped her focus on her own life with a more positive attitude.  Someone noticed the purse Josephine had with her.  It was made by Son Hee Williamson.  They took several with them to give to children in wheelchairs.  
Adrian was team captain on day 6.  He shared that 7.4% of the population in Mexico is disabled.  There is no ADA.  ALEM (the organization they helped) allows people in wheelchairs to have a job.  ALEM gives them back their dignity.  They provide a service to the community that cannot afford to upgrade their wheelchairs.  He said that before his trip to Mexico, he was unaware of ADA.  In Mexico those with disabilities were looked down on as "nothing."   He was proud to have been a small part of the restoration of dignity for those.  It changed his perspective.  In working beside those who were disabled, they developed a sincere interest in each other.  It will forever change the way he relates to those who are challenged.
Frank Rosenberg announced a sendoff party for Sam - a pizza party on August 3.  He also announced that he is attending school full time in Flagstaff to be a Nurse Practitioner.  As part of his experiential studies, he is working in a mobile RV providing services to the homeless community in Flagstaff where the winters are really cold.  He will be collecting warm sweatpants in large sizes as well as warm socks and underwear during August to be distributed in the areas where he is working.
Jim Erickson said Mesa West had won the annual District award - a travelling trophy - for being the top giving club in the District in 2022-23 both in total giving and per capita giving to Polio Plus.  He declined taking the trophy home.
At the August Club Assembly, we will hear from John Pennypacker about goals in supporting The Rotary Foundation.
Don LaBarge said he is honored to be Colleen's advisor.  He said AG Dan Coons told him it is not possible to change Colleen's mind so his work is cut out for him.
Something to Ponder
“All the great things are simple,
and many can be expressed in a single word:
freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope.”
-- Winston Churchill
A Bit of Humor
Roy Rogers bought a grand pair of new boots.
While out camping overnight, he laid his
new expensive pair of boots out to dry.  
A mountain cat thought they
might be tasty and took them.
In the morning, Roy tracked the big cat,
trapped it, and reclaimed what
was left of his boots.
When the other campers saw what
Roy had trapped, the question to all was...
Pardon me Roy, is that the cat
that chewed your new shoes?...
The Big Four - Ways to Support Rotary in Mesa West
As Rotarians, we are regularly exposed to opportunities to support various causes with our time, talent and treasure.  Sometimes it is hard to sift through all the information and decide where we are going to use our available financial resources. 
It would be wonderful if every Arizona Rotarian would make the following BIG FOUR their Rotary charities of choice and support every one of them every year, we could make a bigger difference than we are making today.
  1. The Rotary Foundation (TRF) Annual Fund - The Rotary Foundation transforms your gifts into service projects that change lives both close to home and around the world."  Giving a small amount each month adds up.  CLICK HERE to download a form you can use to sign up for Rotary Direct, electing "Annual Fund - Share" for your recurring donation.  
  2. The Rotary Foundation (TRF) Polio Plus - Rotary's commitment to eradicate polio is so well known and respected that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation matches donations $2 for $1.  To take advantage of this opportunity to multiply the effect of your giving, CLICK HERE and download a second Rotary Direct form, this time electing electing "Polio Eradication" for your recurring donations.  Those who donate $100 or more annually to Polio Plus qualify in District 5495 as Polio Plus Society Members.  If you would like to make that commitment, CLICK HERE to download the commitment form.
  3. The Rotary Vocational Fund of Arizona (TRVFA) provides vocational education grants to Arizona Residents who meet specific low-income guidelines.   The grants enable the recipients to lift themselves out of poverty, benefitting themselves, their families and the economy of our state.  TRVFA is a 501(c)(3) charity.  They also are a Qualifying Charitable Organization for Arizona Tax Credit Donations.  Their QCO Code is 20698.  Many Arizona Rotarians say giving to TRVFA is a "no brainer."  If you can help someone lift themselves out of poverty and it won't end up costing you anything why would you not do it?  Mesa West Rotary has the highest number of members who have signed up for automated monthly recurring donations by electing that option on the "Donate Now" button on the TRVFA website.  Click the image to learn more or CLICK HERE to DONATE NOW.  
  4. Mesa West Rotary Foundation, Inc. is the funding and fundraising arm of our own Mesa West Rotary Club.  It is a 501(c)(3) charity.  We have had successful sponsorship campaigns the last few years enabling us to spend our energy on service rather than on holding fundraising events.  Charitable grants that we get involved with are funded through our charitable foundation, Our signature Gift of Hearing Project in Guaymas Mexico is funded through this foundation.  Scholarships are awarded annually to Westwood High School Students (the high school where Mesa West Rotary sponsors an Interact Club).  Funds are used to support a variety of activities in four of the Rotary Avenues of Service:
    1. Community Service
    2. International Service 
    3. Vocational Service
    4. Youth Service
The process isn't quite automated at this point in time, but we hope it soon will be.  For now, you can email our executive secretary who can help you work out a recurring donation plan should you wish to make that arrangement to support our own club's charitable activity.
Aug 03, 2023
A New Leaf
Aug 10, 2023
The Mesa House, Inc.
Aug 17, 2023
Sunshine Acres Children's Home, Inc.
Aug 24, 2023
View entire list
Executives & Directors
President Elect
Director '24
Director '24
Director '25
Director '25
Director '25
Mesa West Foundation President
Club Service Chair
Fundraising Chair
Membership Chair
Public Image Chair
Rotary Foundation Chair for Mesa West
Vocational Service Chair
Youth Services Chair
Executive Secretary
Upcoming Events
Food Packing Session at Feed My Starving Children
Aug 08, 2023
4:30 PM – 6:15 PM
Mesa West Rotary Board Meeting
Via Zoom
Aug 15, 2023 5:30 PM
Invitation to Mesa Club - Speaker is Greg Stanton
Mesa Rotary Club - Benedictine University
Aug 16, 2023
11:45 AM – 1:00 PM
Mesa West Rotary Board Meeting
Via Zoom
Sep 19, 2023 5:30 PM
View entire list
Birthdays & Anniversaries
Member Birthdays
Ray Smith
August 9
Jack Rosenberg
August 12
Rodney Daniels
August 17
Alex Cohen Gray
August 18
Mike Whalen
August 19
Joan Reimann
August 29
Spouse Birthdays
Toni Farmer-Thompson
August 5
Scotty Romine
August 12
Rosalyn Schmidt
August 24
Joan Reimann
August 29
Don LaBarge
Chris LaBarge
August 3
John Benedict
Jane Benedict
August 7
Machel Considine
Tom Considine
August 11
Stephen West
Julie West
August 22
Amanda Rosenberg
Frank Rosenberg
August 26
Frank Rosenberg
Amanda Rosenberg
August 26
Ted Williams
August 29
Join Date
Stephen West
August 1, 1993
30 years
Steve Ross
August 1, 1989
34 years
Don Boucher
August 3, 2012
11 years
Rotary District 5495 Links
District Links
Arizona Rotaract
Rotary District 5495
Rotary Interact District 5495
The Rotary Vocational Fund of Arizona (TRVFA)
Rotary Youth Exchange
Rotary Youth Leadership Awards - RYLA
RYLA Service Project Support
Bulletin Editor
Jeanie Morgan
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THE FOUR WAY TEST of the things we think, say or do

first  Is it the TRUTH?
second  Is it FAIR to all concerned?
third  Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
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