The Rotary Clubs in Mesa, Arizona held a combined meeting Wednesday, November 15 to celebrate the official visit of District Governor Nancy Van Pelt.  Mesa West Rotary President, Allan Cady, called the meeting to order.  John Wiegenstein, President of Mesa Sunrise Rotary provided the thought for the day sharing the background behind how Herbert Taylor came up with the 4-Way Test for his business, and it became the test used for Rotarians world-wide to temper everything they think, say, and do.

To get the meeting off to an energetic, fun, chaotic, and participative start, Darl Andersen from Mesa West Rotary had everyone present participate in singing Row, Row, Row Your Boat in rounds, table by table.  Guests were welcomed, announcements made, and each club highlighted accomplishments and planned activities.  Our President, Allan Cady, discussed our continuation of the 25-year Gift of Hearing project in Guaymas, Mexico, which was originated by Mesa Baseline Rotary.  This year, there were 333 people seen, with 175 receiving hearing aids.  Overall, 3-4,000 hearing aids have been provided through the annual project, with the support and hospitality of Guaymas Rotarians.  Plans are already starting to continue the project in 2018.  Mesa West Rotarians will honor District Governor, Nancy Van Pelt with members of the club donating $5,000 or more to Rotary Vocational Fund of Arizona before the end of the year.
In her presentation, Nancy Van Pelt began by announcing that she was very proud that all the Mesa Clubs had gotten their goals into Rotary Central by the published deadline.  
She said that Rotarians are dreamers.  Every success starts with a dreamer.  This supports the theme for 2017-18 "Rotary:  Making a Difference...together!"  Shelter Box was the dream of a Rotarian in Great Britain.  Polio eradication grew out of the dream of a Rotarian in the Philipines.  Closer to home, the Homeless Youth Connection grew out of the dream of a single Rotarian in our own district in the Southwest Valley, and now supports homeless youth valleywide at 52 high schools.  Every project starts with a dreamer.
Nancy stated that she is honored to serve as the District Governor of our newly combined combined district, stating we are better together.  She is appreciative of the hours of work of many Rotarians throughout both of the old districts who looked honestly at what practices were working and which had become outdated or redundant to come up with best practices to use for District management going forward.
She said that $1,400,000 in total grants were the product of the recent Friendship exchange.  There will continue to be two RYLA camps, giving youth throughout the combined district the opportunity to choose which camp will best suit their schedule.
This year, the day prior to the District Conference, a Peace Conference will be held.  DG Nancy is encouraging clubs to plant a Peace Pole in their community.  The District is providing a $100 grant to each club who participates in this activity.
The first international project that Nancy had the opportunity to participate in was a wheelchair distribution in District 4180 in southern Mexico.  On that trip, she landed in Mexico as one single Rotarian and left with many Rotary friends from both districts.  She realized that though her own actions may seem small, they never are because of the ripple effect.
Mesa West President, Allan Cady, received recognition for being the #1 club in the District for annual giving to The Rotary Foundation.  All of the Club Presidents were presented with the new combined district banner for 2017-18.