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Club Information
Iowa City Noon Rotary Club

Service Above Self 

We meet Thursdays at 12:00pm
University Athletic Club
1360 Melrose Ave.
Iowa City, IA 52246

District Site

Usha R. Balakrishnan

Usha R. Balakrishnan
2016-17 Club President

Club Presidency Year Aspirations: click here 

Club Presidency Power Point Presentation:  click here

Club Presidency Year Theme:
Make Rotary a favored Third Place for professionals (active and retired) in the Iowa City area!

IC Noon Rotary Stories
Proposed New Members –
This posting is effective October 24. Members have until November 4 to express concerns in writing to the Club President. The following people met recently with the Information/Orientation Committee:
Thomas Werderitsch II - Construction Services: Commercial Building (Tom Werderitsch)
Edward Cranston - education: information technology  (retired) (Herb Wilson)
Bryan Rennekamp - Education: Software Development (Eric Weiler)
Carlton Jackson Jr - Association Management: Real Estate (Verne Folkmann)  
Geoff Fruin - Municipal Administration: City Manager (Bill Bywater)  
1.A moment of silence was observed for retired State of Iowa Geologist and longtime Club Rotarian and friend to many, Donald L. Koch, who passed away on Oct. 17. Past President Arleigh Clemens and President Usha expressed condolences to Don’s family on behalf of our entire Club. Don’s life will be celebrated on Saturday, October 29th at North Hickory Hill Park in Iowa City, Iowa
2.Guest Carlos Morales, presented our club with his Rotary Club flag from Huehuetenango, Guatemala.
3.Michael Hill and Lena Hill, who are both faculty in the UI English Department, announced local events taking place that are centered around a collection of their essays, titled: Fields of Opportunity: UI’s Black Migration Stories. This three-day event unites the UI Press publication of Invisible Hawkeyes: African Americans at the University of Iowa during the Long Civil Rights Era and Rtn. Chuck Swanson shared details about Hancher’s commission of Step Afrika!’s The Migration: Reflections of Jacob Lawrence.
4.President Usha announced the United Nations Association-Johnson County Chapter Event “Celebrating the World’s Children” on Oct. 23, from 2 to 5 pm at the University Club. Ray Muston will be moderating, and President Usha is singing a special song that her aunt and her Mom sang at the UN General Assembly in NYC on Oct. 23, 1966—exactly 50 years ago!
5.Usha encouraged Rotarians to participate in a collaborative Rotary Social on Oct. 25, 5 to 7 pm at the Coralville Radisson. This Rotary Social is aimed to cultivate collaborations among humanitarian volunteers with local and international writers and poets, young and old.  No cost to attend. Sponsored with financial support from Pete and Kathryn Wallace, Tom Cilek, and CARTHA. Just show up!!
6.Rotarians are encouraged to participate in the Annual Road Trip to Rotary Headquarters organized by John Lee and Cyndy Crider on Friday, Oct. 28. A coach bus will leave at 7 am from the University Club and will return at 9 pm. Sign-up with John Lee or Cyndy Crider. Seats still available!
7.The Ronald McDonald OPEN HOUSE has been rescheduled for November 15.
Please come for guided tours scheduled for 7:45am, 12:00pm, 4:30pm, and 5:30 pm. You may RSVP your preferred time to Heather Wilson at 319-384-5852 or by Email at by November 11, 2016. This is a Celebration of 15 YEARS. Since 2002, the Iowa City Noon Rotary has helped support the mission of the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Eastern Iowa & Western Illinois through the Fore the House charity golf outing. Light refreshments and guided tours, and meet the staff and volunteers who keep the House running.
8.Long time friend of President Usha,  Ingrid Wehrle (an artist who used to live in Iowa City but now lives in Portland, Oregon) read the poem “The Pleasures of Friendship” by Stevie Smith.
  1. Ride the Goat The Club heard from 2 presenters:  Katharine Marshall & Patricia Smith
10.Induction of new members:
a.Kirk Cheyney (Jody Braverman)
b.Dalton Shaull (Tom Cilek & Joe Vens)
Introduction of Program speaker was scheduled to be by Alan Reed however, he was called into surgery, conducting a live donor kidney transplant.
Program: Dr. Michael Voigt, Clinical Professor of Gastroenterology and Hepatology and director of the Liver Transplantation Service at the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics.
Dr. Voigt discussed his life’s driving passion following his upbringing in South Africa. Voigt, who treats patients with Hepatitis C, described the prevalence of Hepatitis C, the available treatments and the various factors that serve as barriers to treatment. Voigt indicated that there is much that an organization such as Rotary could do to help, as this condition is easier to eliminate than Polio. “This is an enormous problem in the US and around the world and will only get worse before it gets better. There are many people in Iowa who have hepatitis C and are unaware of it.” Voigt explains. “Hepatitis C is quiescent until it starts to affect the liver. Voigt estimates there are around 100,000 people in Iowa who have the disease. “It’s especially important to get tested if you were born between 1945-1965. According to the CDC, 70 percent of infected people are from the baby boomer generation, and up to 50 percent of people who have the disease, have no idea. It is curable and treatable if you catch it early enough.” Voight notes that, for a period of time, the blood supply in the U.S. was contaminated with the virus because medical professionals did not yet know how the virus spread or what it even was. "There is a stigma attached to this disease because it is associated with intravenous drug use, but many people have it for other reasons."  Hepatitis C  lives with you for several years, before symptoms present. We can expect to see rapid increase in deaths due to liver cirrhosis and cancer (impact of Hep C) until 2060. We have conditions that are killing people, with little to no funding, we do have the vaccines to prevent the spread of this disease.  In the US, the vaccine is given at birth, but across the world, this is not done. There is medication (easy) to cure.
Voigt believes the reason the prevalance of Hepatitis C is so great and expected to grow is because it can be easy to ignore, since we do not see it and become somewhat lethargic about addressing such needs immediately or urgently. “Death is a horrible outcome for a disease that we have a cure for. If we know this is coming, we would take action. Cost of treatment can be a barrier combined with the large percentage of people who might have the infection but don’t know that they have the infection. They are not getting appropriate medical care. Inconsistencies in cost of treatment (in the US vs. across the world) are a complex situation involving legislation and pricing by drug companies; which in turn affects patients’ accessibility to treatment. But we have people dying as a result. We COULD end it now.
Top Rotary International News Stories
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Mandela Fellows

July 21, 2016 with RI Past-President and young entrepreneurs from Africa.

Oct 27, 2016
Mark Nolte
Iowa City Area Development Group
Nov 03, 2016
Verne Folkmann, Past DG Jacque Andrew, others
The Rotary Foundation: Doing 100 Years of Good Around the World!
Nov 10, 2016
Vonda Birchmier
The Challenge of Human Trafficking Issues in Iowa
Nov 17, 2016
Alex Taylor, Woofables
Celebrating and connecting our local entrepreneurs to Rotary
Nov 23, 2016
Wednesday Luncheon Program with Coralville
(Thanksgiving Week: No Thursday meeting!)
Dec 01, 2016
Connie Mutel
A Sugar Creek Chronicle; Observing Climate Change from a Midwestern Woodland
Dec 08, 2016
Steve West, Ryan West
West Music-75th Anniversary
Dec 15, 2016
"Rotary's Got Talent!" to Celebrate Festive Season
Musically-inclined Club Rotarians will perform fun short pieces with audience joining in!
Jan 05, 2017
Azeez Butali, with introduction by Deb Kacmarynski
Healthcare Apps for maternal and child health-a model in Nigeria
Jan 12, 2017
Jan 19, 2017
United Way of Johnson and Washington Counties
Katie Knight, Curt Heideman, Renda Greene-Fishman

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