Tunkhannock Rotary Club 5408
Chartered August 25, 1925

January 2015

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Service Above Self

We meet Thursdays at 12:15 PM
Purkey's Pink Apple
651 SR 6 W
Tunkhannock, PA  18657
United States
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Saturday evening, January 24, 2015, the Tunkhannock Rotary Club had a wonderful holiday social at the Tunkhannock Moose Lodge. Chef Michael and his staff prepared a gourmet meal complete with hor d’oeuvre’s, the main course, and dessert table. Alan Thatcher with his guitar performed music for the enjoyment of members and their guests throughout the social hour. Much conversation and laughter prevailed and the event was deemed a success.
                                Rotarian Al Noble and his wife pause for a photo.
                           President Elect Ron Furman and Terri enjoy the social hour.
                                         Rotarians John Proctor and Frank Oliver
                                              plan their dessert table strategy.                              
January 22, 2015 Meeting Program - ROTARY AWARENESS
Club member, Jeannie Brady, organized the program for January 22, 2015 meeting, Rotary Awareness. In addition to Jeannie, Rotary Club members Frank Oliver, Stephanie Holdt, Tom Daniels, Diane Ljungquist, Sandy Lane, and Al Noble related the circumstances that led to Tunkhannock Rotary Club membership.
Jeannie led off the program relating that her first experience with Rotary was at the age of 15 in her birthplace, Taiwan. At that time, she learned one of the main programs within Rotary International was the Exchange Student program. When she moved to the United States and Tunkhannock, Mr. Fitz would hurry out the door of their workplace to attend the weekly Tunkhannock Rotary meeting. She asked if she could join, but at that time was told there were no women members. By 1989, a woman had been granted membership in Rotary and when someone approached Jeannie to consider membership, she joined Rotary on September 25, 1989. She has served the club in several capacities including Club President. She feels that the Rotary matches qualities that her mother instilled in her and the Buddhist philosophy of the ‘3 Givings’ – give of yourself in service, knowledge, and financially. The Rotary project that most specifically touches her heart is Roadside Clean-Up. Her mother in Taiwan for many years had made it her own personal community service project to keep the streets clean in their neighborhood.
Frank Oliver spoke about his reasons for joining Rotary. Frank left Tunkhannock in the late 1970’s to become a fund-raising consultant working on several projects throughout the United States. During his career experiences, he learned of Peter Drucker’s belief that the Salvation Army “is by far the most effective organization in the U.S. No one even comes close to it in respect to clarity of mission, ability to innovate, measurable results, dedication and putting money to maximum use.” [Purtell, G. (April 2002). “The Most Effective Organization in the U.S.”: The Salvation Army and Peter Drucker. Capital Research Center, Compassion and Culture. Retrieved from www.capitalresearch.org.] Frank added that from his perspective, Rotary somewhat mirrors the Salvation Army, an organization that relies on local volunteers who do things that relate back to the Salvation Army’s overarching mission. In his experiences while working in several locations throughout our country, he encountered individual Rotary Clubs whose members were completing projects that related to and were appropriate for their community while still reflecting Rotary’s overarching mission. He attended Rotary Club meetings as a guest speaker to provide information about various fund-raising projects in which he was involved. And, throughout the country, Rotary Clubs were extremely supportive of those projects. Three years ago, Frank returned to Tunkhannock to enjoy retirement. Since his return, he has become involved in several community service projects that have also been supported by Rotary. When asked to join a community service group, Frank typically asks, “What is the mission of your group”. It would seem that the mission of the Tunkhannock Rotary matches Frank’s mission. When asked to join the Tunkhannock Rotary, he said, “Yes”.
Due to a friend’s health event that greatly impacted Stephanie Holdt, she decided to obtain the necessary certification to work for Aflac Insurance. That decision ultimately brought her to employment as a Health and Life Agent at Tri-County Insurance Company in Tunkhannock. Tri-County President and CEO Al Noble and Samantha Maruzelli (Partner and Agent) are valued members of the Tunkhannock Rotary Club. Their invitation to attend a Rotary Club meeting resulted in Stephanie becoming a member. Stephanie, who before joining Tri-County was involved in a real estate company with her husband, has three children. When they were young, she was actively involved as a volunteer with various school activities. Now old enough to tell her that type of involvement is an embarrassment to them, she finds she can satisfy her desire to be involved in community service projects through Rotary.
Tom Daniels related that his journey to Tunkhannock Rotary membership took a number of years. When growing up on Long Island, he participated in Boy Scouts. Upon moving to Tunkhannock, he continued his involvement in Boy Scouts as his own sons earned the ultimate Boy Scout Eagle Award. Sadly, he and his family lost their home to the most recent major flooding that occurred on the Susquehanna River. The outpouring of help he and his family received from the community as they went through the process of flood recovery including building and settling into a new house was amazing. On many occasions, Tunkhannock Rotary Club member Harry Sharpe had asked Tom to join Rotary. Now that the new house is completed, Tom related that he has simply run out of excuses and deciding that the timing was right joined the club this past December. He sees his membership in Rotary as an organized way to give back to the community in the spirit in which the community responded during the flood recovery. Tom concluded by mentioning he is convinced that one of his sons, who has been involved in several community service projects including helping in Haiti, is destined to be a Rotary member.
Diane Ljungquist currently the CEO at Tyler Hospital related that her parents raised her to work hard and give back to the community. As a child she was involved in Girl Scouts beginning at the Brownie Scout level. As her career path led her from Berwick to Wilkes-Barre to Tunkhannock, she has been involved in service to her community. When approached to join Tunkhannock Rotary, her two biggest concerns were: 1) would she be able to make a difference and 2) did she have the time to be a member. She is glad that she was asked to join Rotary and that she said yes. She has found membership has enabled her to become better acquainted with the community and is impressed with the difference the local Rotary makes in our community and Rotary International makes in the world.
Sandy Lane related that she was one of the earlier female Tunkhannock Rotary Club members. She has served in a variety of leadership roles including President and currently as Treasurer. She mentioned that upon gaining employment as Business Manager in the Tunkhannock Area School District, School Superintendent Kent Kresge informed her it was expected that she become involved in a community service club. Kent also a Rotary member, suggested that Sandy consider joining the club. Sandy was hesitant at the time because there were no other female members. As soon as a few ladies joined the club, Kent approached her again and she decided it was time to join. While Sandy has many positive Rotary experiences, she related her experience with hosting a foreign exchange student from Serbia. While in the United States as a foreign exchange student, Dia decided that she wanted to stay in the United States and attend Drexel University. Sandy concerned about cosigning for a rather large sum of money it would take to begin the process, mentioned in passing to Rotary member Don Sick (now deceased) how upset she was to tell Dia she could not help her with her dream. Don’s response was, “Give me 24 hours”. Within that time, Don found a core group of people including Sandy to be responsible for the financial funding needed. Dia completed her degree at Drexel, paid everyone back ahead of schedule and currently lives with her husband in the Philadelphia area. Now that she is retired, Sandy has time to visit Dia more often.
Al Noble first came to Tunkhannock as a student teacher in 1957. He added that the aforementioned Kent Kresge was also a student teacher at the same time. After teaching in the Wyalusing school district for five years, Al left education to begin a career in insurance. He first became involved in another community service group in Tunkhannock that had their meetings in the evening. He found it difficult to attend the evening meetings and discontinued his membership. At the time he was first asked to attend a Rotary meeting, nothing really came of it. Sometime later when he was asked to join Rotary, he accepted. The first project he coordinated for Rotary was the Road-Side Clean-Up project. Upon mastering that activity, he was asked to become involved in more projects that led to his being considered the ‘club fundraiser’. Al has been involved at the district level of Rotary for many years especially the Leadership Education Program.
A common theme that was prevalent with all the speakers was the desire to give back to the community that many times had provided assistance to them or a project that was/is extremely important to them. Additionally, the majority of them added that they reason they joined the Tunkhannock Rotary Club was very simple, it was because . . . someone asked them.


At the January 15, 2015 Tunkhannock Rotary Club meeting, George and Trixie Gay provided a very interesting account of their extended 50th Wedding Anniversary trip to Asia via cruise ship. The Diamond Princess, their home for several weeks, was 952 feet in length and had a maximum crew capacity of 1115 while accommodating 3,078 passengers. George during his military service in the United States Marines had spent time in Asia and was anxious to revisit the area. Trixie who had never been to Asia was excited to see that part of the world in which George had served. She especially wanted to see the Great Wall of China.
The cruise that included 7 countries and 13 ports of call was divided into 2 legs. On the first leg of the trip, George and Trixie traveled from Alaska to Beijing, followed by the second leg from Beijing to Singapore. George related that on the first leg of the cruise, the ship was at maximum capacity with passengers primarily from Canada and China. On the second leg of their journey, the ship was not quite as full and many of the passengers were from Australia. The 7 countries they visited were: Russia, South Korea, China, Japan, Vietnam, Thailand, and Singapore. The voyage from Alaska to the first port-of-call in Japan took 7 days and included a rather strong storm that most people endured in their cabins. Day 4 of that part of the journey, the ship changed its route to avoid a storm that was stronger than the one they had already experienced.
As George and Trixie took us from one port-of-call to another with pictures, they provided interesting commentary about geography and economics mixed with their travel experiences. We learned that while on their voyage, they traveled from 62 degrees latitude to less then 1-degree latitude and they crossed the International Date Line. George added the date line is not a straight, but rather a line that is set by political boundaries. They mentioned they saw strong presence of United States companies such as McDonald’s, Starbucks, and Kinkos during their travels. They felt the countries they visited with the strongest economies were China, Japan, and South Korea. Despite all the interesting pictures George and Trixie shared, a club favorite was the photo of them celebrating their actual 50th Wedding Anniversary while on their cruise of a lifetime.

Frank Oliver Inducted January 8, 2015

At the January 8, 2015 Tunkhannock Rotary Club meeting, Frank Oliver was inducted into the Tunkhannock Rotary Club by President Norm Kelly. Jeanne Brady, his club membership sponsor, participated in the ceremony by presenting the Rotary International pin to Frank.

Kristin Smith-Gary, Tunkhannock Public Library Director, Visits Tunkhannock Rotary

Guest Speaker Kristin Smith-Gary, Director of the Tunkhannock Public Library (TPL), was introduced by Sandy Lane. Ms. Smith-Gary highlighted the importance of the TPL and Tunkhannock Rotary Club partnership that supports literacy in the community. As a result of the Rotary Club annual donation to the Library, TPL is able to provide important resources such as Learning Express, an online resource that provides people access to tests and test preparation activities for the GED, ASVAB, SAT, U. S. Citizenship, and Civil Service exams.
TPL was also able to add the Wall Street Journal to the library’s periodical collection, in addition to purchasing books for children in support of the Summer Reading Club. TPL plans for the Rotary gift of $5,000.00 presented to Ms. Smith-Gary at today’s meeting include continued support of the aforementioned programs and resources in addition to purchasing incentives for the Summer Reading Club. Ms. Smith-Gary related that to receive state funding, TPL must raise the required percentage of the annual funds needed to provide services. The Tunkhannock Rotary Club donation is applied to that required amount. Additionally, TPL is planning to redo their website to provide easier access to E-Books. Ms. Smith-Gary concluded her presentation with the information that over 40,000 people visited the library this past year.
At the conclusion of her program, Tunkhannock Rotary Club President Norm Kelly presented a $7,000.00 donation to the Tunkhannock Public Library.
At the Dec 18 Tunkhannock Rotary Holiday Luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple, the Tunkhannock High School Chorus, under the direction of Tara Kasperowski, sang holiday songs and songs from their Wednesday night concert. They even sang a song in Latin and another in German.

Tunkhannock Rotarian Jeannie Brady recently returned from a visit to the Republic of China. While in Taiwan, she visited the Rotary Club of Taipei, which is the home club for 2014-2015 Rotary International President Gary K.C. Huang. Jeannie presented the Rotary Club of Taipei Banner to Tunkhannock President Norm Kelly for the club's collection at the Dec 18 Holiday Luncheon at Purkey’s Pink Apple.


(l to r) Jeanne Brady presents Taipei Rotary Banner to Pres. Norm Kelly

Thomas Daniels was inducted into Rotary by President Norm Kelly at the Dec 18 Tunkhannock Rotary club luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple. Thomas was sponsored and pinned by Jon Buxton. He has been an attorney with Lenahan & Dempsey for over 15 years and will be managing the Tunkhannock Office in Wyoming County.

(l to r) Jon Buxton, Thomas Daniels and Pres. Norm Kelly



At the Dec 18 Holiday Luncheon, President Norm Kelly presented Samantha Maruzzelli with a Paul Harris +2 pin in recognition of her contributions to the Rotary Foundation.

President Norm then distributed sponsor pins with blue backers to Samantha and to Al Noble for their sponsorship of a new member each (Anne Sehne and Stephanie Holdt) during the last Quarter.

(l to r) Al Noble, Samantha Maruzzelli and Pres. Norm Kelly


Francis Turner, aged 95 and a Rotarian for 64 years, gave a riveting presentation at the Dec 11 Tunkhannock Rotary Luncheon at Purkey’s Pink Apple on his Sept trip to Europe to commemorate the 70th Anniversary of the liberation of Europe during World War II.
On Dec 4, President Norm Kelly presented a check for $10,000 to Mary Lu Shaffer, President of the Executive Board for the Seven Loaves Soup Kitchen and Ken Price, who is on the Fund-raising Council, for their Campaign for 51 Warren Street capital fund. Also attending was Seven Loaves Soup Kitchen Fund-raising Council member Frank Oliver, who spoke to the Club in August about their goals for the current capital fund-raising campaign.
(Left to right) Ken Price, Rotary Treasurer Sandy Lane, President Norm Kelly, President-elect Ron Furman and Mary Lu Shaffer
At the Dec 4 Club Assembly, President Norm presented checks for $1,000 each to Interfaith Friends Executive Director, Mary Foley and to Pat Skrynski, Executive Director of Wyoming County Children & Youth, to buy Christmas toys/gifts for children in need or in foster care in Wyoming County. The money was collected during the Black Friday Candy Cane Day Collections.

(Left to right) Pat Skrynski, President Norm Kelly and Mary Foley
At the Dec 4 Tunkhannock Rotary Club Assembly at Purkey's Pink Apple, voting took place for the election of officers for the 2015-2016 Rotary year. The slate of candidates proposed by the Nominating Committee was unanimously elected.
President-Elect (2016-2017) – Ann Way,
Vice President – Don Streby,
Secretary – Carol Ziomek and
Treasurer - Sandra Lane
Directors (8): Nicole Brillhart, Karen Fuller, George Gay, Stephanie Holdt, Tom Kukuchka, Michael Markovitz, Bill Milligan and Matt Pompey.


Saturday evening, January 24, 2015, the Tunkhannock Rotary Club had a wonderful holiday social at the Tunkhannock Moose Lodge. Chef Michael and his staff prepared a gourmet meal complete with hor d’oeuvre’s, the main course, and dessert table. Alan Thatcher with his guitar performed music for the enjoyment of members and their guests throughout the social hour. Much conversation and laughter prevailed and the event was deemed a success.
                                Rotarian Al Noble and his wife pause for a photo.
                           President Elect Ron Furman and Terri enjoy the social hour.
                                         Rotarians John Proctor and Frank Oliver
                                              plan their dessert table strategy.                              


The Tunkhannock Rotary Club is dedicated  to  improving the quality of life for all citizens in our community. We are 55 men and women who strongly believe that putting “Service Above Self“  gives us the courage to make a difference in our community and in the world.

Our educational projects are designed to inspire children to see themselves in ways  they might not have imagined before.  They broaden their horizons, give them hope, and encourage them to dream. They also provide children with the tools necessary to accomplish those dreams.

Our community projects and contributions are varied, and cover a wide spectrum of activities.  Examples are the  Drug Take Back Program, disaster relief efforts, the Foreign Exchange Program and funding of educational scholarships.

Rotary International provides a gateway to the world which enables us to participate in programs such as ending polio, providing clean drinking water, and eliminating worm diseases. We also help build schools and community health centers.

The Rotary International  theme for this year, “Light Up Rotary”,  is inspired by a Confucius saying : “It’s  better to light a single candle than to sit and curse the darkness.”

We believe that no one should sit alone in darkness. And as proud Rotarians, we invite you to join us in making a real difference in our community and the world.

Kind Regards,
Norm Kelly
President 2014-2015


Have you ever wondered why you should join a service organization like Rotary? Ever wonder what Rotary does? Watch this video and find out!

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Upcoming Events



Jan 29, 2015
Feb 05, 2015
Erica Rogler, Dietrich Theater Executive Director
Rotary Presentation to Dietrich Theater
Mar 19, 2015
Jun 18, 2015
Tunkhannock Rotary Club
P.O. Box 325
Tunkhannock, PA 18657
(570) 836-1247
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