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Port Arthur Rotary

Service Above Self

We meet Tuesdays at 12:00 PM
on Zoom until further notice, In Normal Times: Prince Arthur Hotel
17 Cumberland Street North
Thunder Bay, ON P7A 4K8
Canada
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A bittersweet final day as President for Rod Morrison- he proved again a consummate leader in handling the agenda, appropriately thanking many colleagues and passing the baton to incoming President Krysta Logozzo Daniele.

32 Rotarians were on hand to congratulate Rod on an exceptional year and welcome President Krysta.

Bob Tomlinson was lead host with a littler help from his friend, Past-President Kevin Holloway. All attending proudly wore Rotary togs of one sort or another (many in the Rotary toque on a summer day).

There was a lengthy list of speakers, all in unique Rotary points in their Service lives:

1. Rod honoured Lori Mitchell, outgoing ED at Salvation Army for her 5 years of excellence at the helm there. She moves on to be area commander for 22 "ministries" in the Toronto GTA as well as some northern locales. Lori graciously thanked everyone for their support and this was reciprocated.

2. Rod thanked all his Committee Chairs for yeoman service over the year..indeed as we all know, exceedingly challenging considering the pandemic.
Rod once again showed his skill as an interpreter of service with his farewell reflection. The many positive achievements of the club were reviewed in considerable detail (see below).

3. Following consultation, Rod made the announcement of our club (dual) ROTARIANS OF THE YEAR: Chris Bailey and Warren Philp.

Chris has had a very strong hand as co-treasurer (along with Leslie Savitsky) including great skill at professional advice on money matters, compelling preparation and communication in all the same. Hearty congrats to Chris (pictured),

Past-President Warren  was described by Rod as a multiple driver in many club activities and a major public face in the community representing Rotary.  (Modest Warren is also pictured in his unique Rotary beer club shirt). Again, congrats Warren.

4. Business announcements: included updates on membership stats for the year, the Dew Drop Inn Commitment (Dave Silliman), Arpad Z's final departure June 29th to Romania, and the Rotary Visioning Exercise under Blaine Johnson (Krysta LD)..a presentation to follow.

5. Rod Morrison delivered a final farewell reflection..as always poignant and relevant to the club and it's mission:(Rod is pictured). He will continue on as Past-President always willing and able to pitch in for the club. His virtual "fête" was made by Warren Philp, a fine testimonial to his leadership, a promise for an improved one later, in person, and instructions for Rod to open a gift from the club; a fine RI plaque honouring him as outgoing president. 
 Of note Rod issued a special thank you to Kishore Sakrahni (Hong Kong Rotary and Shuniah resident) for introducing him to the club in 2016..and with a meteoric rise to leadership thereafter.
 Nice job Warren 
The meeting closed right on time! The attendees were energized. Thank you Rod for a very fine year in such challenging times! 
AT OUR CLUB JUNE 23, 2020

At our penultimate Rotary year Zoom meeting today, President Rod Morrison welcomed 32 members plus guests.
Of significance; guest speakers (see below) and Rebecca Tanaka (RI administrator in Evanston HQ, Illinois-Chicago area) and Katherine Buggenhagen  were on hand from the United States.
 
Rod's reflection today served as an opportunity for guests to hear about the club's Indigenous Strategy going forward...exciting and very progressive.
 
He also quoted Einstein: " What a sad era when it is easier to smash an atom than prejudice." Apt indeed.

 
AT OUR CLUB JUNE 16, 2020

Today's meeting was attended by 31 members and guests, and was hosted, with thanks, by Warren Philp and Mike Nitz.

 From the United Way (Thunder Bay) press release of Aug 12. 2019:

"Albert Brulé appointed to tackle Thunder Bay's most pressing social issues."
(
This is a good intro for today).

Recently transferred Rotarian (from London and Grande Prairie AB clubs); Albert returned to the (virtual) podium in an uplifting reprise of his earlier (September) address to the club, on the scope and current /future activities of this keystone organization addressing the core issue of poverty.
He has introduced many new creative energies since commencing his new role in September 2019. "A Community Impact Plan" has spawned an effective collaborative approach with many partners. The approach is novel, ambitious and aspirational. It is far beyond simple fund-raising.

Albert's presentation clearly presents a much needed approach to the issue of poverty and its many manifestations.

A more recent successful partnership with the TB Community Foundation (the COVID-19 Community Relief Fund: Respond/Recover/Rebuild ) is a great example of cooperation and team building (along with Rotarian Ola Calderon of TBCF no less). 25 organizations have benefited 7000 individuals already, with input and  assistance from the federal government as well.
 The future holds many exciting innovations as well:( some involving youth engagement)

United Way and it's many programs can be reached at: uwaytbay.caDonations are encouraged of course.

 Our club is thrilled to have Rotarian Albert on board, for obvious reasons.

Thanks Albie for your energy and professionalism (Dave Legge..introducer and thanker) .

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Business and Announcements

1. President Morrison reflected on his term (# 1...) always salient
2. Rotary visioning survey for all members encouraged (electronically) and the dedicated visioning group is about to go to work (Krysta Logozzo Daniele)
3. Fees due date reviewed.
4. The club Indigenous collaboration is moving ahead.. several speakers are potentially booked for the new Rotary year.
5. Arpad Zolyomi was again delayed..now flying out June 29th.
6. A potential award for LU student in ethics proposed (Jaro Kotalik).
Today's meeting was attended by 31 members and guests, and was hosted, with thanks, by Warren Philp and Mike Nitz.
Albert Brulé, photo from United Way (Thunder Bay) press release, Aug 12, 2019
"Albert Brulé appointed to tackle Thunder Bay's most pressing social issues."
 
Albert returned to the (virtual) podium in an uplifting reprise of his address to the club last September. He was introduced and later thanked by David Legge.  Albert led us through the scope and current /future activities of this keystone organization addressing the core issue of poverty.  Albert introduced many new creative energies since commencing his new role in September 2019.  "A Community Impact Plan" is aimed at creating effective collaborative efforts with many partners. The approach is novel, ambitious and aspirational. It is far beyond simple fund-raising and grant-giving.

 
AT OUR CLUB JUNE 9, 2020

Today 39 members and guests bade farewell to our exceptional Rotary Exchange student Arpad Zolyomi (Romania).

The meeting was chaired by President Rod Morrison and hosted on Zoom (with thanks) by co-hosts Warren Philp and Kevin Holloway.
 Amongst the special guests were Blake Carlson, District 5580 Inbound Youth Exchange Coordinator, Dr.Juan Pernia (LU prof who hosted Arpad), Debora Tacylla, and several host parents (for Arpad).

(Arpad Z). his farewell address

Arpad Zolyomi joined us from Gatineau P.Q. and delivered a very fine overview of his very unique experience here in Thunder Bay (foreshortened alas by the Covid-19 pandemic). He will be flying back on June 15th.

He was introduced very professionally by Past-President Art Warwick (who spent many a day with Arpad) and later thanked by many; including the Club YE lead elect  Past-President John Stephenson, District Chair Blake Carlson, Bill Everitt (a host dad), Dr Juan Pernia (host dad), Mat Diegel (host dad and club RYE Chair) and best wishes from all members from President Rod Morrison.

 Arpad already had international experience and wanted to add Canada ("with it's trees and trees-green and green") as a great place as an exchange student. He got involved quickly and integrated beautifully here. He even played football for the (St Ignatius) seniors who had a perfect season. he injured his knee and battled back. He was very appreciative of the reception here and indeed every day he was "active and joyful."
The first (of many) Questions was on the topic of "what makes a great host family?" His response in this writer's view was amongst the finest, well articulated , thoughtful and heartfelt of any heard in recent times by a departing exchange student. His English is excellent and his extemporaneous speaking skills are superb. In short his stay here met and exceeded all expectations.

Sadly (via Blake Carlson) the District Exchange program will be on hold for the coming season (Covid-19 pandemic). The club hopes (and perhaps expects to see Arpad in the future). Best of luck.

Business and Announcement Highlights:

1. Reminders re fees, the Indigenous Club Planning session, Visioning session, Club allocation awards, RI connection and awards

2. Maria Hudolin was thrilled to announce the safe arrival of her first grandson and is now really "plugged in" in B.C. She will be joining her new Rotary club and already is active therein.
AT OUR CLUB-June 2, 2020

Chair President Rod Morrison led the meeting assisted by Zoom Team: Host: John Stephenson and Co-hosts Brian Walmark and Kevin Holloway.  32 members attended.

Kevin Holloway again projected a fine version of O Canada and a solemn reflection was delivered by President Morrison on the grim topic of systemic racism around the world as emanating from tragic events in the U.S.

Today's guest speaker was the eminent Member of Parliament the Honourable Niki Ashton MP for Churchill-Keewatinook Aski. 
Ms Ashton joined us from her home in Thompson Manitoba.  Her distinguished background and credentials were offered up by her friend, Rotarian Brain Walmark. Brian's association with our guest (along with his daughter Meia) goes back years. Brian also thanked Ms Ashton for her fine presentation. She was characterized as a human rights champion.

 
AT OUR CLUB-May 26, 2020

Today's special guest speaker was Cindy Paypompee, family counsellor, and consultant in the Human Trafficking Program at Beendigen Services.

Beendigen (Ojibway for "come in") is a broad spectrum umbrella for numerous services within Thunder Bay addressing a wide array of social issues. Among them is the Anishinabe Women's Crisis Home (807-346-HELP (4357). Other programs, housed at different sites (Beendigen Head Office is in Fort William First Nation: www.beendigen.cominfo@beendigen.com) can be perused on the internet.

Ms Paypompee was professonally introduced and thanked by Matt Diegel as well as President-elect Krysta Logozzo Danielle and President Rod Morrison. These Rotarians have met our speaker in the past and a partnership commenced.

A brief bio for Cindy is appended.

She spoke to us via Zoom Link and was assisted by a Power-Point set organized by co-host Kevin Holloway.
Today's lead Zoom host was Steve McCauley. President Rod Morrison chaired the meeting and as in the past brokered a seamless transition of all the necessary elements.

The scope of services offed by Beendigen is remarkable. Although Human Trafficking in it's myriad disguises was highlighted, Beendigen also does extensive work in providing housing, prenatal support, awareness counselling in many forms, family support and much more.
Financial support comes from many sources including government and not for profit organizations. Our own United Way (and TB Community Foundation ) is also strongly supportive (www.uwaytbay.ca).

Cindy handled a wide array of questions. Our club supports her work (we have had a definitive presentation on Human Trafficking itself in the recent past at Rotary). She is available to assist and answer questions anytime.Our sincere thanks and best wishes going forward are extended to Cindy.

Business Highlights and Announcements:

1. Rotary District 5580 has awarded us $1000 US for pandemic related help. The board has converted to Canadian dollars and came up with $750 to each of the Salvation Army and the Dew Drop Inn.
2. The Dew Drop Inn will be assisted this week by 8 Rotarians re: meal prep.
3. President-elect Krysta Logozzo Danielle attended the PET visioning exercise. Members are encouraged to join her (virtually) for an upcoming think tank on developing a club 3-5 year plan.
4. Our fine Rotary exchange student Arpad Zolyomi was on hand to bid farewell and was thanked by President Rod and our own Rotary Exchange lead Matt Diegel. His final "presentation" is slated for June 9th from Montreal.
5. Anyone able to contribute to a further Covid mask sewing project can contact the club.
6. The club is awaiting a decision from the City re a renewal of the Rotary Santa Claus parade.
7. Wilderness Discovery continues to fund raise and look at future assistance with construction work (example wiring of the new "bunkies.").
8. Notices are upcoming re annual dues renewals.
 
 

 

Today's meeting, chaired by President Rod Morrison was enjoyed by approximately 40 members and guests (some notables included former Premier Kathleen Wynn, Syed Kabir from SHIFT, Bill Bartley (Canmore, AB) and Mark Tilbury (L.U.) It was great to see Past District Governor Paula Timmins back at our meeting! Bob Tomlinson was host, with co-hosts Kevin Holloway, Steve McCauley and Warren Philp. Many thanks all.

Guest speaker today was the distinguished political strategist, advocate, author, former Canadian Senator and current Principle of Massey College (U of T), Hugh Segal.

Mr. Segal was professionally introduced, and thanked by Rotarian Brian Walmark. For him and many others, Mr.Segal is an ideal role model working toward the public good and "speaking truth to power."

He focused on his passion for addressing the woes of the Canadian welfare system and it's management of Canada's poor (some 9% of the total or 3-4 million Canadians).

AT OUR CLUB-May 12, 2020

38 members attended today's meeting on Zoom, chaired by President Rod Morrison and hosted this week by Mike Nitz. Co-hosting were Kevin Holloway and Bob Tomlinson.

Key note speaker was his worship, Mayor Bill Mauro of Thunder Bay.
Our distinguished guest was introduced and thanked very professionally, by Vonnie Cheng.

Mayor Mauro graciously provided time in his busy schedule to outline, in some detail, essential elements of the city's many challenges to the Covid-19 crisis.
Chief among them is the financial position facing the city, viz à viz; accumulated and projected deficit, and key areas therein. Current prognostication is for a figure of about $13 million by the end of 2020.One example, losses of transit system revenues is of note. Remedial and mitigating actions such as the various reserve funds and help from senior levels of government give substantial reassurance to Mr. Mauro et al.

He also was reassuring as to the health numbers(really quite good within the province for this area) and commentary re: future reopening, was forthright.

President Morrison opened up an informative Q and A session. Topics included: deficit comparisons with like communities elsewhere; the effect on tourism; collaboration with other levels of government; in-house city cost containment measures including worker redeployment, and others.

The club is indebted to Mayor Mauro for his leadership and sharing of all this important information.

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Business Highlights today

1. Ongoing Board activity and decision making re future events, along with the other local clubs
2. A Rotary district grant was recieved ($1000 US) for discretionary use (going to Salvation Army and Shelterhouse)
3. Host for today Mike Nitz announced his new position as V-P at TD Bank commencing next week: office in Thunder Bay, but with a huge territory-Kenora to North Bay. There are 23 branches and 300 employees under his wing. Congratulations Mike. Outstanding!
4. An excellent round today of "Happy Dollars"
5. Our in-bound exchange student Arpad will be leaving Thunder Bay May 28th. (his sister, also in the same position in Mexico..also reuniting). Mat Diegel as usual has been superb in managing this challenging exchange student year.
6. Dew Drop Inn and Adopt-a-Road services upcoming (Via Dave Silliman).
7. Mr Tech Mike Nitz advising on a Rotary RV app with headset for virtual reality Rotary events.
Today's meetings featured 2 video presentations and one (semi) official welcome into the club of a new (transferred) member.

Big thanks to the host team: this week-the Captain was Warren Philp, ably assisted by Kevin Holloway and Bob Tomlinson.And to David Legge for scribing.

Kevin Holloway introduced a successful O Canada video. President Rod Morrison chaired the meeting. There were 45 people on line for the meeting.

A. Featured speaker the Honourable  Past(25th) Premier of Ontario and MPP  for Don Valley West: Kathleen Wynne
Suitably introduced (and thanked) by fellow traveller Rotarian Brian Walmark,  Kathleen Wynne very comfortably spoke on:

1) Her Journey in Politics: coming from a background in publicly funded education (her passion), she outlined her beginnings ("not the odds on favourite") all the way to the premier's chair. 
Her close association with First Nation education and welfare stood her in good stead. The Basic Income Pilot,  Cap and Trade, modernization of Labour laws and increasing minimum wage are highlights of her career ( 'everything I have done was worth it").

2) Where are we now (in Ontario and Canada): This discussion centered on the importance of collaboration with other parties, especially given the current pandemic process, and how it is mandatory to learn the corrective lessons from it. She specifically hopes for improved policy development for Long Term Care institutions as well as stronger recognition and re-emphasis of long standing strong institutions.

Kathleen handled about 7 inputted questions from her Rotary audience: all relevant. Highlighted responses were on: climate change repercussions and opportunities, the basic income issue, mitigating personal vitriol/partisanship, how did it feel in the premier's chair?, how does the Liberal Party move forward?

The club is very much indebted to Kathleen for her participation. She was invited back. And thanks to Brian Walmark for making this happen.

B. Instalment #2: Discussion with Dr. Stewart Kennedy-Covid 19 

Dr. Stew Kennedy, Incident Manager for Covid-19 at TBRHSC, kindly returned for a more in-depth discussion on the science  and epidemiology of pandemics, with Rotarian Past-President David Legge. This chat as well as last week's opener is being posted on the club Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/PARotary  Today he reviewed topics such as the immune response and challenges with vaccine development given the world wide dissemination of a highly contagious and novel viral pathogen, the conundrum of testing..how it is done et al.

C. Welcome to the Club- Albert Brulé:
The club is pleased to have Albert, CEO of Thunder Bay United Way, join us. His long career in the charitable sector has taken him around Canada and 3 previous Rotary clubs as well (Grande Prairie, AB, Calgary, AB and London, ON). He is back in familiar Thunder Bay and we will enjoy his fellowship and service. Welcome back Albert!

Business Highlights:
1. President Rod 
welcomed Fort William President Stephen Margarit, with news from his club. Also President-elect and former Assistant DG Sandy Lychowyd (Lakehead Club), former PA Rotarian Treasurer Frank Zanatta, and others.
 
Big thanks to David Legge for scribing our meetings! 
 
 
 

AT OUR CLUB-April 28, 2020

We were pleased to have two distinguished guest presentations today:

A: Dr Stewart Kennedy (Exec VP of Medicine and Academics, as well as Incident Manager for Covid 19, at TBRHSC).

 Via Zoom and with the assistance of the Rotary tech committee (Kevin Holloway, Warren Philp et al)and with thanks to Tracie Smith of TBRHSC, Dr. Kennedy provided a welcomed overview on the current covid -19 situation at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Center and Thunder Bay area. 
Dr. Kennedy is a veteran Thunder Bay physician and award winning medical educator and hospital administrator.
 His message was clear and cogent: this area is being served well by the the collaborative team approach with low numbers of illness and mortality. 
Of course the situation remains complex, fluid and dynamic. Caution and active surveillance ongoing is mandatory.

There was a Q and A involving Rotarian David Legge asking generalized questions. Dr.Kennedy will be on hand for Part 2 of this session next week as questions of a more clinical and science based nature are offered up.

 The club is very grateful for Dr. Kennedy  providing time for this service.  He was introduced and suitably thanked by President Rod Morrison. Please find the video on the Club's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/parotary or by clicking on 



Dr. Stewart Kennedy

B. Erin Beagle, Executive Director of Roots to Harvest (www.rootstoharvest.org) since it's inception (and a notable Rotary Paul Harris Fellow), then provided her own fine overview of the hugely expanded role and scope of her "hands on for food security" organization that has become a huge force in this area. 

 Erin Beagle

Especially since March break (into Covid-19 territory), Roots to Harvest has been in full throttle, with about 430 food packages going out per week from a large kitchen/warehouse involving a small army of employees (10|), community gardens, student and refugee volunteers and a  fine network with numerous not for profits in the community. The need is great. No questions are asked. The Thunder Bay Community Foundation-TB United Way alliance is helping in many ways including financial assistance. There are currently 13 food distribution sites, both in town and rural.
 Erin is pictured in her element. Her tireless work was outlined in a welcome intros and a very fine thank you by Past-President Lauri Tulloch.
Thank you again Erin.

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Business highlights today:

 There were over 40 attendees today and President Morrison welcomed new member Mark Tilbury from the corporate partner/member Lakehead University. Great to have you on board Mark. 
Matti Peland former District RYLA rep from Thunder Bay was on hand also from Bemidji, MN. Welcome Matti

 Matti Peland

1. A bittersweet tribute to Rotarian Lori Mitchell, moving on to Area Commander charge in Toronto (Salvation Army). Lori is a huge force wherever she goes. Her work here especially with the new Center for Life building project is exemplary
2. Dave Silliman reported on the last Dew Drop Inn session (8 Rotarians thanked)
3. David Silliman is proposing another Adopt-a-Road cleanup along N. Cumberland St  May 23rd. Stay tuned.
4. Brian Thompson honoured the April birthday folks (Brian Walmark was visioned on his mule at the precipice...thank God!) Arpad Zolymi, our long suffering exchange guy had his on April 5th

Today's Zoom meeting included a number of Rotarians from the Lakehead and Fort William Clubs as well as very special visit from Kishore Sakhrani at his home in Hong Kong (see below). There were approximately 51 folks on the line. Thank you for joining in.

Dr. Stew Kennedy, lead Covid-19 MD Response Team Coordinater at TBRHSC was unfortunately called away at the last moment. We were, however, fortunate enough to hear from Vignesh Viswanathan,  President of the Confederation College Student Union (Inc) or SUCCI. He was introduced and thanked by CC Past President and  Rotarian Jim Madder.

Vignesh spoke of his background in (dental) health care services, having a Bachelor of Dental Surgery (2009-2016) in his home town of Chennai, India. On making the big (and challenging) move to Canada, he has moved up the leadership ladder to President of SUCCI and has been involved in many "firsts" in his new country (including being first international student president of the union).  https://www.confederationcollege.ca/student-life/your-student-association-succi
He was grateful to attend with his story today. He has many goals but insists on following through with "deliverables". 
He is pictured as seen by the participants.
The club thanks Vignesh and wishes him all the best going forward here..

President Rod Morrison again chaired today with able assistance for co-hosts Kevin Holloway and John Stephenson.

Business Highlights:
1 A fine reflection by Dave Silliman, using his observations of new life in nature (the goldfinch in emerging plumage) as a great metaphor for hope in this tough time (for humans in particular)
2.Wilderness Discovery Centre: Brenda Winter and Bob Tomlinson reporting-resumption of activities date unsettled, still inaccessible by road, bookings into July and August occurring. Bob Hookham would be grateful for donations.
3. Dew Drop Inn: (Dave Silliman).. a volunteer cohort developed for this week.  https://www.wildernessdiscovery.net/
4. Kishore Sakhrani (from Hong Kong Rotary) on the much more advanced and largely successful battle against Covid-19 there. They stress the key elements: 1. masks --early, 2. social distancing,3. washing of hands. Some civil activities are now opening, but they have had 2 waves already.
5. Fort William Rotary (Stephen Margarit) are meeting every 2 weeks, with the next one April 29th- a fun Zoom night.
6. Extensive update (Ola Calderon) on the TB Community Foundation http://tbcf.org (and co-partner United Way of TB https://uwaytbay.ca ) work in this day and age of considerably increased need.  
AT OUR CLUB April 14, 2020

Port Arthur Rotary is perfecting virtual meetings with the use of Zoom technology. There were 33 (+) attendees today, and this is catching on very nicely. The tech crew is diligent and very helpful to all and sundry. Thanks.
Example: Our guest speaker screen shot (Syed Kabir) is shown first. Beyond that a professional shot emanating from his business is added for comparison. Working well.


Next: Syed as viewable professionally


Our inaugural guest speaker is well acquainted to the digital age. He is Syed Kabir, founder and CEO of Creon Media (a full service digital marketing agency in Thunder Bay) and representative today for SHIFT ( Thunder Bay's Young Professional Network: www.shiftnetwork.ca)).
Past-President Art Warwick introduced (and thanked) Syed, who has an enviable resume including Hon Bachelor Commerce (U of T), MBA at Lakehead University and experience in many tech sectors. He is proud to call Thunder Bay his (and young family) home .

Syed feels there is a huge potential for jobs for young entrepreneurs, but who do need a "platform" in this community.

He outlined the essentials of SHIFT, and drew many parallels with Rotary: indeed possible increased cooperation and partnerships are inviting. Any young professional interested in networking can belong; the active members being under 40 years of age (ambassadors over 40). Many current and past Rotarians have been instrumental in SHIFT (note: upon "graduating", members choose their own pathways going forward).

A very healthy Q and A period allowed Syed to enhance many aspects of SHIFT.
 The club is much indebted for his cooperation and enthusiasm for SHIFT on this first day of virtual meeting guest presentations. We hope to continue the dialogue.

Re BUSINESS:
1. Members had a chance to connect on screen and audio with individual greetings
2. Lori Mitchell gave an update on construction of the new Salvation Army building; proceeding very well indeed (e.g. 3rd floor basically completed) despite some obvious challenges during Covid.
3. RYLA (unfortunately) cancelled for this year (Bob Tomlinson)
4.Fort Severn FN super resilient. A second shipment of water is imminent, just before shut down of the winter road. Chris Bailey and Brian Walmark are the leads from this end. No Covid there (hopefully never).
5. Members encouraged to complete Krysta's on-line survey re the Zoom methodology for meetings.
Photos from the web/zoom meeting show a slide from SHIFT with Syed during his talk. These are  followed by Rotarians Lori Mitchell and Brian Walmark and our President Rod Morrison.
AT OUR CLUB- April 7, 2020

I'TS GETTING BETTER ALL THE TIME (Beatles...Sgt Pepper..Getting Better)...(re Zoom and PA Rotary)


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A very healthy turnout brought us together today with only a few technical snafus as we move forward.

Sincere thanks to host John Stephenson, with stalwarts Warren Philp, Kevin Holloway, Krysta Logozzo-Daniele and of course President and Chair Rod Morrison (having escaped from the Gecko infested South Pacific).

The extended hour pre-meeting coverage allowed for tech problem solving and unique socialization.
 President Rod allowed each of the attendees a few words confirming in general, good health and resiliency during these uncertain times:

We were able to cover a good deal of business and updating:
Some highlights:

1. Brian Walmark on the Fort Severn water situation and the club successful input (a palette of water shipment and more ) to the community (with thanks     Chris Bailey). Brian opined on the big issues in our FN communities with respect to water sustainability/security.
2. Liz Laughton on the St. James Project (Bill Everitt stepping down after a fine career as lead). Replacement successor welcomed.
3. Krysta Logozzo-Daniele on upcoming programming..next up SHIFT networking in Thunder Bay.
4. Dave Silliman: Dew Drop Inn coping with 400 bag lunches per day.
5. Jim McDonald:  Wife Bonnie sewing masks as well as Mary-Anne Mackett. Lori Mitchell has patterns. Contact these heroes.
6. Rod Morrison on World Health Day and RI involvement.
7. John Stephenson, our host today on enhancing the regular meeting with online socializing.
8. Jim Colqhoun on sick on absent members in need.

The club is alive and well and adjusting very nicely. We need to reach out to some members along with all our neighbours and families

Today, a rather momentous initiative in unusual circumstances: our first virtual meeting (under the Covid -19 regime), using the Zoom technology platform for conferencing.

 An excellent "turnout" was welcomed by President Rod Morrison. Many although not all, were visible and many able to speak.

The kinks should be remedied fairly soon thanks to the dedicated tech wizards in the club.
Special thanks to Warren Philp, Kevin Holloway, Rod Morrison , Brian Walmark (and almost certainly some others).

It appears that Zoom is a vehicle that will likely suffice going forward: cost is very modest: (one or more members already subscribe!).
 A number of issues were dealt with, and very appropriately. 
1. Club business
2. Verification (by Brian Walmark) that emergency water supplies are being shipped to Fort Severn (community members) to deal with their emergency. Many Rotarians have come to the plate.
3. The Dew Drop Inn  crew successfully combined forces to assist with take out meals last week.
4. Bill Everitt was able to contact some of our senior members at risk, all are coping fairly well.

Stay tuned as this ever changing world moves ahead.

 
Sunday March 15, 2020
 
Port Arthur Rotary Meetings Cancelled
 
This is an important announcement.
 
The spread of Covid-19 is a developing crisis internationally, across Canada and Ontario, and now there is a confirmed case in Fort Frances.
As a result, the Board has decided to cancel our meetings until April 7th at the earliest.
 
This decision has been made in the best interest of members to reduce the risk of transmission of this virus.
 
We will continue to communicate with members regarding future meetings.
 
Thank you.
 
President Rod Morrison
 
For more information about Rotary International’s position on Covid-19, see the link below:
 
 
AT OUR CLUB March 3, 2020



The Honourable Minister of Health for Canada, Patty Hajdu, found time in her very busy schedule to address Rotarians and guests today. It was much appreciated. 

Minister Hajdu has made a meteoric rise in national politics from her earlier life helping and advocating for the less fortunate.  She was introduced by Rotarian Past-President and friend John Stephenson as a strong, principled, compassionate advocate who possesses a unique courage.

Minister Hajdu began by admitting her work is highly demanding but very rewarding.  She then highlighted a number of directions and goals followed by her office and government.  Among them: 
  • alleviating poverty and developing a national strategy
  • job skills investment
  • a national strategy for improving inclusivity for women, indigenous people, immigrants etc.
  • tackling climate change and the national obligation
  • next steps toward a national pharmacare plan
  • "primary health care" for all
  • improving the approach to mental health and addiction issues, with primary prevention stressed
  • an overview of the current Covid-19 issue, perhaps a pandemic in the making. This big topic required her to find a measured and rational response based on science and yet still understanding the fear surrounding it.  Having an open conversation is critical. She currently reassured us of good communication and integration of health care experts across the country.
  • dealing with reconciliation with Indigenous peoples: a realistic approach will not be easy... it is a "lifelong journey".

Patty is indebted to Rotary for its work ethic and she spoke specifically of the 4-Way Test...simple enough to say but a difficult challenge to put into practice.

She graciously gave time for Q and A.



Minister Patty Hajdu is pictured (centre) with her Admin Assistant Megan Wyant (far left), John Stephenson, Past Rotary President and friend, Jackie Dojack who thanked her very professionally and today's meeting Chair President-elect Krysta Logozzo-Danielle.

The club is indebted to Minister Hajdu for this fine presentation today.
There were two equally deserving celebrations today:



OUR FIRST CELEBRATION   today introduced us to Grade 12 student at St. Ignatius school Isabella Bosch who was the winner not only of the local Rotary 4-Way Test Essay Contest ($500 prize) but also the 5580 Rotary District grand prize winner ($1250 U.S.). 
This is indeed cause for major celebration!  Isabella was accompanied by her dad Richard, and read the essay to members and guests entitled "Consumerism." It was superb.
She spoke about how important it was to be thoughtful in your purchases, and to be kind to your neighbours and the environment by shopping local – and she showed clear links to the Rotary 4-Way Test.   Keep your business and taxes local!  She is pictured centre, flanked by two of the judges, Cynthia Judge (Ft. William Rotary Club) and Art Warwick (Port Arthur Rotary Club) on left and dad Richard Bosch with Past District Governor Roly Turner on the right (who graciously thanked Isabella Bosch).



Isabella Bosch is pictured alone beside a banner on the 4-Way Test.   Congratulations and power to you going forward with these ideals.
 
 
OUR SECOND CELEBRATION   today was introduced by Brian Walmark, Co-Chair of the successful Rotary Radio Day campaign which aired February 17, 2020.  Brian introduced and thanked the many from the club as well as two important partners from Dougall media: Rosa Tucci-Maselj and Daryl Bolton, both with lengthy experience assisting our Club. This year, the goal of 546 ads was met (and topped by one!). 



The group photo shows Rosa Tucci-Maselj at centre with Daryl Bolton just behind her to the right, along with some of the the major players in this year's campaign: including Brian Walmark and last year's chair Bill Ulakovic, team captains, ad selling winners, voicing chair, financial wizards, and more.
Dougall media announced they are raring to go again next year and want us to aim for even higher goals!  Deepest thanks go to the whole team!­



Pictured are Rotarians Jim McDonald (centre) with Warren Philp (left) and Art Warwick (right). Together these three between them sold an astounding 255 ads:  a real testament to their dedication to the cause: Well done gentlemen!­
At Our Club February 18, 2020
 
Our speaker today was a very interesting Youth Worker in Thunder Bay who gave us an overview of some of the issues facing teens and young adults who need a helping hand for access to housing, counselling and the like. 
 
Given the sensitive nature of her work and her clients we are asking Rotarians not to post her name on social media.  Suffice to say, those of us who were at this week’s meeting got a good appreciation for all the work that the Social Services of our city do and we are well served by the knowledge and caring that is demanded of them every day.
 
Thanks to everyone in social work – you do a great job!
 
AT OUR CLUB February 11, 2020



Alexandra (Ola) Calderon, Executive Director of the Thunder Bay Community Foundation, presented a compelling story of her interesting life and the evolution of her passion for helping people and fostering social justice through fundraising.

Born in Rome, Italy, she became a refugee from communist Poland. She led a peripatetic life with two siblings fleeing Poland, eventually five siblings in Canada. With a unique educational background and approach to life, she found herself with husband Andrew and now 3 great sons and two rescue cats in a busy and very fulfilling life in Thunder Bay.

Ola explained the basics of giving through the TBCF and encouraged (more) members to get involved.
 
She was introduced by Colin Bruce, and thanked by Jackie Dojack (both Rotarians are also board members of Thunder Bay Community Fund).

She is pictured after this fine presentation (computer glitch handled nicely) along with Colin, Jackie and Past-President / meeting Chair Warren Philp.

Thanks for joining the Port Arthur Rotary, Ola ... you are a real asset to the Club!

Justin Oda and Lindsay KingSleep Educators and CPAP Consultants with Shoppers Home Health Care-WellWise, presented today on OBSTRUCTIVE SLEEP APNEA (OSA) and CPAP therapy.

Sleep apnea is a major health care disability, with far ranging ill effects. It has been largely under diagnosed and appreciated up until recent times. It does affect many individuals, and this includes many outside the typical stereotype  (obese middle aged males).

Upper airway collapse/compression of musculature affects many and the manifestations are protean.

Justin and Lindsay comprehensively dealt with the definition, patho-physiology, clinical manifestations, subtypes, the typical "myths" explained, co-morbid conditions associated with OSA: leading to definitive diagnosis via referral (sleep study) and treatment options. 
 Of course leading the treatment options is Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP). This has been a big break through for many an exhausted, poor sleeper, at risk for heart disease, stroke and even death.

The principle is quite simple.. a customized mask applies positive pressure that stents open the constricted airway: the proper oxygenation resulting creates a much desired clinical benefit.

 The talk was well received and a healthy dialogue continued past the noon hour. 

Justin and Lindsay are pictured around President Rod Morrison (in the centre). On the left flank Is Mat Diegel who thanked the speakers and revealed his own personal journey. On the right flank is Jaro Kotalik, an MD with personal experience also, who introduced the guests.
At Our Club January 28, 2020
 
A very special induction ceremony today welcomed Chief Paul Burke (Fort Severn First Nation) as lead in a PA Rotary new initiative at "Community Membership."
 
Pictured surrounding Chief Paul Burke (centre) are Past District Governor Roly Turner, Past-President Warren Philp (left), 2019-20 President Rod Morrison, and Brian Walmark, close friend and mentor to Chief Paul Burke. Thanks also to Rotarian Chris Bailey, who laid much of the groundwork for this occasion behind the scenes with his professional expertise.

The club is honoured to have Chief Burke, his brother and others from this remote community enter the Rotary fold.

The ceremony involved a welcome introduction, biography and significance of this partnership, a "charge" and exchange of Rotary pin/certification, handshakes etc. and a standing ovation.
 
Congratulations to Chief Burke. He spoke of his commitment to Rotary and expressed thanks for this important partnership.

------------------------
 
 
Also at our meeting today, President-Elect Krysta Logozzo-Daniele presented a comprehensive and very sobering overview of Rotary District 5580's entry in awareness and potential Service opportunities under the challenging topic of "Ending Human Trafficking"

President-Elect Krysta Logozzo-Daniele is pictured with President Rod Morrison.
 
The presentation clearly opened eyes of all present into the serious issue of trafficking (both sex and labour) as it exists throughout our society. Further Rotary follow-up guest presentation on the management of same in Thunder Bay itself will follow.

Members and guests heard of the definition, the geographical and human scope, the methods used by perpetrators, the characteristics of the victims themselves, how to spot human trafficking (red flags et al), and the big challenge - how to end it.

Tackling Human Trafficking can involve participation by Rotarians in raising awareness, education, reducing risk factors and curtailing demand. These are all major challenges.

A visit to www. rotaryendht.org is well worth follow-up perusal..  The END HT website is Step One for awareness.

Krysta's  presentation was powerful. One could hear a pin drop. Thank you Krysta for this excellent beginning.
AT OUR CLUB January 21, 2020

The fine work of the non-profit, volunteer (par excellence) Hospice Northwest (not to be confused with St Joseph's care Group Hospice) was on display today as result of the presentation by strong support volunteer, business consultant Melissa McClement.

Hospice Northwest 
is not in the clinical management game, but in the provision of a plethora of services providing compassionate support to people and families dealing with end of life ((care and reality).

We learned of the 4 essential Service Areas: 
1. Caregiver Buddy (long term chronic illness clients)
2. Grief and Bereavement (trained counsellors at work)
3  Quick Response team (immediate support in crises)
4. Journey Home Team (a new program focusing on clients with housing vulnerability issues).

Hospice Northwest has a large and growing network of volunteers and clients. Currently in Thunder Bay alone there are about 282 clients.

Certainly fundraising is of importance (a registered charity) but maybe more important is "friendraising."
Rotarians and citizens in general can help the cause by social posting, word of mouth, fundraising and more (eg 50/50 draws etc).

Our own Sue Bailey had the floor to add expert, experiential nuggets as a veteran volunteer and expert on the subject (Sue was a 2016 Order of Ontario inductee for her pioneer work in this area).. She developed the curriculum for the Rapid Response Team and now the (new) Journey Home program.
Complex inter-familial situations at the bedside for example are assisted by the Hospice Northwest volunteers acting as neutral 3rd party counsellors.

This was a powerful presentation..an impressive volunteer based service so important to Thunder Bay is available.

Melissa is pictured beside the Rotary banner along with club member ( and thanker) Brian Thompson (far R- veteran social worker himself ), Sue Bailey (in pink) and( far L), President Rod Morrison.

 Check out Hospice Northwest  for details at www.hospicenorthwest.ca
Dr. Christopher (Chris ) Lai, Director of Curans Heart Centre, a full spectrum,( "One Stop for Cardiac care") model, may have surprised the members and guests today, by not speaking directly about cardiac health, but his topic "Cannabis Babies" was well worth it indeed.

Dr. Lai has a wealth of experience in holistic care in general. His career in cardiology is nonpareil.
Today he enlightened us on the history, pharmacodynamics, neurologic ramifications and societal impact of cannabis use in the reproductive stages of life.
 Most have heard of FASD and opioid withdrawal in newborns. What about "weed" though?

The big questions are: how safe is cannabis use in pregnant women and their offspring at and after birth all the way up to say 18 years of age?

Though cannabis use in adults in moderation for whatever indication/reason is not in the same league as say heroin for addiction, chronic use in pregnancy and youths is fraught with danger. Many believe it is a developmental neurotoxin that can result in various neurologic disorders and predispose to mental health problems galore later in life.

 Dr Lai made this serious topic come to life. His infectious humor added to what was a memorable occasion.

Chris was suitably introduced and thanked by his old buddy, Rotarian Bruce Nelson. They are both pictured along with President Rod Morrison.
 
(Left to Right)  Member Chris Bailey who thanked our Rotaracters, Rotaract members Catherine Kibiuk and Andraya Colistro, and member Kevin Holloway who introduced them.
 
Kevin Holloway introduced two Rotaracters, Catherine Kibiuk and Andraya Colistro (a long intro but there was much to say) and then the whirlwind duo began!
 
Andrya Colistro is in her third year biology at Lakehead University with courses in Ecology and Conservation Management.  She likes working outside and generally helping to save the planet.  Her long term goal is to become an Oceanographer; short term goals are scuba diving certification and boating licenses,
 
Catherine Kibiuk is in her third year of Applied Life Sciences at Lakehead University concentrating on Biomedical Science. She plans to graduate with a Microbiology degree and possibly go into Medicine and become a family doctor.  One of her interests is developing arsenic oxidizing bacteria which may be able to remediate contaminated soils in Northern mines.  She has had interesting courses in DNA molecular methods, pathogenic bacteriology and the like.  She is very involved in the university’s Biology Club, in charge of planning ourtdoor events, volunteers at the Hospital, works part-time at a pharmacy ….

 
July 2020
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Meeting Responsibilities
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Fine Master
Lori Mitchell, First Tuesday of the Month
 
Art Warwick, Second Tuesday of the Month
 
Colin Bruce, Third Tuesday of the Month
 
Doug Shanks, Fourth Tuesday of the Month
 
Steve McAuley, Fifth Tuesday of the Month
 
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Port Arthur Rotary
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