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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
President Usha, back from her trip to India, announced that she missed Rotarians (but only on every Thursday that she was away)! She was very glad to hear that the meetings during her absence had gone quite smoothly! She expressed her gratitude to Program Chair Tom Cilek, and past Presidents Bill Bywater, Nancy Quellhorst, and Pete Wallace for having subbed in her absence at our Rotary programs; and to President-Elect Mike McKay for having subbed on her behalf at our Club’s Board meeting.
To share belated sentiments for Valentine’s Day this week, Rtn. Riley Larson shared with us the really sweet poem, Your Catfish Friend, that was read at her wedding last May!  (Thank you, Riley!)
President Usha congratulated Nancy and Neil Quellhorst on the birth of their first grandchild, baby Neil!
Rtn. Dorothy Paul announced an upcoming event, “Night of a 1000 Dinners,” a community celebration of International Women’s Day, an event that is sponsored in part by our Club: an international dinner, provided by local restaurants and groups, followed by a program on Refugee Women and Their Futures; Educating Generation of Refugee Girls and Boys. The event takes place on Thursday, March 2, 2017 at 6p at Old Brick, 20 E. Market Street, Iowa City. Purchase tickets only at or contact Jim Olson (
Rtn. Christina Kimerle introduced the 2017 Distinguished Young Women of Iowa who were present at our Club today and acknowledged all the Club Rotarians who have helped with this program by serving on the Board (Christina Kimerle, LaShonda Kennedy, Brianna Wills, Kate Moreland) as well as home-hosts (Mary-Ellen Lewis and Patty Roberts).
  1. Jessica Phipps, Norwalk High School, Norwalk
  2. MaKayla Lindemann, Solon High School, Solon
  3. Cassidy Slater-Scott, Iowa City High School, Iowa City
  4. Grace Williamson, Iowa City High School, Iowa City
  5. Michaela Rader, Roland-Storey High School, Jewell
  6. Aastha Chandra, Cedar Falls High School, Cedar Falls
  7. Makenzi Marek, Washington High School, Riverside
  8. Hannah Mandell, Davenport Central High School, Davenport
  9. Emily Dirks, North High School, Sioux City
  10. Emma Garrett, Waukee High School, Waukee
  11. Savannah David, Woodward-Granger High School, Granger
  12. Samantha West, Keokuk High School, Keokuk
  13. Samina Abdullah, Pleasant Valley High School, Bettendorf
  14. Riley Hubbart, Clinton High School, Clinton
  15. Elizabeth Fuller, Southwest Valley High School, Corning
  16. Emma Williams, Osage High School, Osage
  17. Colby Williams, Herbert Hoover High School, Des Moines
  18. Maycie Stanbro, Oskaloosa High School, Oskaloosa
Past President Thais Winkleblack shared a brief update from her participation in the Rotary Iowa MOST trip in Guatemala and presented the banner from the Rotary Club in Huehuetenango. Thais acknowledeged several Rotarians who have helped to get the Iowa MOST trip started: Bill Olin, Pete Wallace, Gary Pacha and others. Thais indicated the significance of this trip in helping her to better understand the power of Rotary at the international level. She spent 10 days building cohesive relationships with doctors, nurses, families and children who put their faith in strangers. She described this experience as a beautiful time to see lives changed. She thanked Rotary for this experience and encouraged all club members to take advantage of international opportunities in Rotary.
Inductions: Mike Carberry / Sponsor: Jody Braverman
Rtn. Herb Wilson introduced our program speakers for today.
PROGRAM: Ed and Jane Cranston described the results of their work over the last 10 years raising funds for the Schools in the Pasrur region of Pakistan. The Pasrur Christian Girls School is one of many schools run by the Presbyterian Educaton Board (PEB) in Pakistan in conjunction with the Presbyterian Church (USA). The Pasrur School has a proven record of excellence going back over 100 years. First Presbyterian Church in Iowa City builds many new classrooms and facilities for the school, which has given it a chance to grow and flourish. About 70% of the students enrolled are Muslim and 30% are Christian. Ed shared a video which summarized the project. The Friends of Pasrur was established in 2007 after the First Presbyterin Church build a dormitory so that Christian girls from rural villages could attend school. The group’s mission was to fund 100 scholarships for impoverished Christian girls. Donors sponsor specific girls and receive pictures, updates, and a thank you note from the girl they sponsor. Ed announced the next project is fundraising for the next school to serve boys since the local law there requires boys and girls be in separate schools after grade 5. He acknowledged the Wilson Family Foundation has donated $100,000 of the $200,000 needed.
Rtn. Herb Wilson added further perspectives and concluded with an enthusiastic plea for help in this endeavor. The students in this region of Pakistan LOVE the chance to be educated. We have successfully helped in so many other causes, we can be successful in this cause as well. At the conclusion of this program, Herb Wilson and Ed Cranston joined President Usha in leading the recitation of Rotary’s Four-Way Test.
Top Rotary International News Stories
Convention: Southern hospitality
The Atlanta Host Organization Committee is offering some good old-fashioned Southern hospitality at the Rotary International Convention from 10 to 14 June. It has planned a wide range of activities featuring everything from good food and music to inspiring tours of local landmarks. If it’s your first convention, these events are chances to meet fellow Rotarians from around the world, and if you’re an experienced convention goer, you can catch up with old friends. Hall of Fame baseball player Hank Aaron will host Rotarians for a “Strike Out Polio” night at the new SunTrust Park, where you’ll...
Member spotlight: The power of the press
When Teguest Yilma helped found the Rotary Club of Addis Ababa Entoto in 2002, she thought polio had already been eradicated from most of the world. But while Ethiopia had been free of the disease, Yilma was shocked to learn that new cases had started cropping up in surrounding countries such as Somalia. “I was thinking, it’s not possible, we can’t be free if the countries around us are not free,” she says. Yilma, the managing editor of Capital, Ethiopia’s largest English weekly newspaper, has brought a journalist’s skills to the fight against polio. She became vice chair of the Ethiopia...
Mandela Fellows

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

John Kenyon, Iowa City UNESCO City of Literature
Feb 23, 2017
Book Festivals, Community Engagement in Creative Cities Network
Jill Olsen & John Ockenfels-RAG4Clubfoot Co-Chairs
Mar 02, 2017
Herb Wilson, Founder, Ponseti Method-Partnership with Ponseti Intl Assoc (PIA)
Ana Merino / Intro by Horacio Olivo
Mar 09, 2017
The Spanish Creative Literacy Project
Aaron Warner
Mar 16, 2017
Cybersecurity issues and startup ProCircular
Andre Perry
Mar 23, 2017
Arts, Innovation, and Community Partnerships
Dorothy Paul and John Fraser
Mar 30, 2017
Andrea Cohen - Johnson County United Nations Association
Deb Dunkhase, Deb Kacmarynski, John Stamler
Apr 06, 2017
Iowa M.O.S.T. Rotary Project: Cleft Lip/Cleft Palate Surgery and Cataract Surgery in Guatemala
Susie Poulton, ICCSD / Intro by Ann Parker
Apr 13, 2017
School-Based Health Clinics
EARTH DAY / Shannon Ramsay: Trees Forever
Apr 20, 2017
Colleen Kennedy: Herbs, Flowers in Shakespeare Literature
Heath Streck, VA Hospital (Iowa City)
Apr 27, 2017
Leadership Perspectives from the US Military and Health Administration
Tammy Richardson-BurOakLandTrust/Steve Schomberg
May 04, 2017
Leaving Legacies / Mike Stoffregen-Community Foundation of Johnson County
Rives Bird, Richard Hurtig: Communicative devices
May 11, 2017
Voxello-UI lab to commercialization experience to improve patient care
Mick Starcevich
May 18, 2017
Kirkwood Community College

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