Celebrating 102 Years of Service Above Self

We meet Wednesdays at 12:15 PM
235 South Cayuga St.
(S. Cayuga at Clinton St., Downtown)
Ithaca, NY  14850
United States
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Pride of Workmanship Awards
Oct 25, 2017
Joan Schnaper, Committee Chair
Deborah Hoard, President,Photosynthesis Production
Nov 01, 2017
Grassroots Distribution and Documentary Filmmaking
Becky Lane: filmmaker, professor, VisionLab360
Nov 08, 2017
Virtual and Augmented Reality: the present and future of 360 degree filmmaking
Upcoming Events
Club Board
President Elect
Vice President
Immediate Past President
Oct 11, 2017
Oct 17, 2017
Oct 4, 2017
Oct 10, 2017
Sep 27, 2017
Oct 03, 2017
Sep 20, 2017
Sep 26, 2017
Sep 13, 2017
Sep 19, 2017
Sep 6, 2017
Sep 12, 2017

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Current Club News

Annual City of Ithaca Pride of Ownership Launches Twentieth Year Nominations Due Friday, November 3

Nominations must be received at the City Clerk’s Office, 108 East Green Street, no later than 4:30 pm on Friday, November 3. Click here for a nomination form.

Ithaca’s Twentieth Annual Pride of Ownership Awards program, recognizing owners of properties within the city of Ithaca who have developed projects or taken care of their properties in ways that enhance the physical appearance of city neighborhoods and commercial areas, is seeking nominations for this year’s awards. The program is a joint project of the Ithaca Rotary Club and the City of Ithaca.

Founded by former Common Council member Susan Blumenthal, who felt that developers and property owners should receive recognition for work that went above and beyond the requirements of the project, the awards are focused on projects that are thoughtful, unexpected, and lift the aesthetic experience of their setting and surroundings.

Do you own property in the city? Have you made improvements lately? Nominate yourself, a neighbor, or be nominated by others. Projects may range from major structural work to small but significant improvements. Commercial projects, owner-occupied housing, rental housing, and institutional facilities (education, religious, government) are eligible. Awards focus on how properties appear from the street and public right-of-way, improve their local surroundings, and thereby improve quality of life for the city as a whole.

Nominations must be received at the City Clerk’s Office, 108 East Green Street, no later than 4:30 pm on Friday, November 3. For more information or an application, contact a member of the 2017 Committee:

Susan Blumenthal at 272-3931 or susanb@twcny.rr.com; John Barradas at 277-2755 or jb@barradasandpartners.com; Frost Travis at 273-1654 or ftravis@travishyde.com; Margaret Hobbie, 220-5334 or mhobbie@verizon.net; Brett Bossard 351-1554 or brett@cinemapolis.org or Scott Whitham, 379-9175 or whitham@whithamdesign.com.

Additional forms are also available on the internet: Go to www.cityofithaca.org and click on “Announcements.” Or Click Here for an application.

Rotary Club of Ithaca Introduces New Members

Ithaca Rotary welcomes:

Maricelis Acevedo is Associate Director for Science of Cornell’s Delivering Genetic Gain in Wheat project. She works with wheat scientists around the world to develop and deliver wheat varieties that are high yielding and disease resistant. Originally from Puerto Rico, she obtained a B.S. in biology and M.Sc. in crop improvement from the University of Puerto Rico, and earned a Ph.D. in biology with a specialization in plant pathology from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. In 2010, Maricelis was among the first recipients of the Jeanie Laube Borlaug Women in Triticum Early Career Award.

Catrina Decker is the External Relations Program Director at Ithaca College. In that role she is engaged in outreach activities by which she establishes and maintains relationships with alumni, representatives of business, government, and non-profit organizations. She meets with students to discuss their career development plans and assists them to engage in the internship and career search processes. Catrina received her bachelor’s degree in 2006 and her MBA in 2014 from Ithaca College. In her free time, she enjoys hiking with her husband, Brad Decker and their 2 dogs, Zoe and Max. She enjoys dance aerobics and eating ice cream all year long, no matter how cold it is!

Tim Emerson first came to Ithaca as an IC student majoring in music performance, and right from the start pursued a career of service. After IC, he attended a graduate program in performance at New England Conservatory, organized independent musicians in Boston, built an independent management consulting practice in the Oneida area, and taught professional writing at SUNY Cortland. Culminating his pursuit to overcome chronic pain, Tim started Kwan Yin Healing, through which he speaks about and produces free materials on "Overcoming Long-Term Pain Without Drugs." Tim is passionate about both disease eradication globally and safe water projects. He is a member of the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce, and glad to be back in Ithaca N.Y.

Aly Evans was named executive director of Family Reading Partnership in June of 2016. She previously managed educational programs for The CBORD Group, which brought her to Ithaca from San Diego. Aly holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education from the University of Northern Colorado, and a Master of Management from the University of Phoenix. She is an active volunteer for local and national organizations that enable her to make a difference in the lives of others.

Linda Pasto grew up in Chicago and has lived in Ithaca with her family in 1985. She has been a nurse for 38 years, and is professor emeritus of nursing at TC-3. Linda earned three degrees from Syracuse University: B.S. in child development, B.S.N. in nursing, and a master’s in maternal child nursing. Linda has traveled to five continentals, volunteers with several community organizations, and gets special satisfaction as an ostomy ambassador. She seeks to help others and make a difference every day since losing her colon to Crohn’s disease.

David Williams grew up in Ithaca. After graduating from the Alternative Community School, he attended Cornell and then moved to New York City to work in non-profit professional theatre. In 2008, he was hired to work on Franziska Racker Centers’ “Making Room” capital campaign before transitioning to Racker’s Quality Enhancement and Standards Department, where he now works as Assistant Director of Standards. Last year, David completed his master’s in public administration from Binghamton University. He has also been a volunteer for Big Brothers/ Big Sisters of Tompkins County.

Rotary Club of Ithaca Inducts New President
June Losurdo of Cornell is service club’s leader thru June 2018

The Rotary Club of Ithaca is pleased to welcome its new president for the 2017-2018 year. June Losurdo, director of development at Cornell Engineering, stepped into the leadership role on July 1. Losurdo observed her 15th year in Rotary this year.

Losurdo grew up in King Ferry, New York and graduated from Michigan State University. She is married to Frank Losurdo and they live in Ithaca, NY. Their son John is a junior at Michigan State University.

June has over 25 years of experience in alumni affairs and development with career highlights including Radcliffe College, The University of Chicago, and the American Cancer Society. She moved back to central New York in 2000 as the Community Executive for the American Cancer Society, and soon joined the Ithaca Rotary Club. Since then, she has been active in her community, serving for 13 years on the board of the Parent Teacher Student Organization (PTSO) for Lansing Central Schools; as a 7-year board member for the Corporate Development Committee for Lansing Central Schools; and as a 6-year board member of a national organization, Engineering Development Forum.

“It is an honor to be the leader of the Ithaca Rotary Club. The experiences of the members are vital to the club’s health, and networking with community leaders has always been a highlight of our club,” said June. “I look forward to the year and making my mark on this club as it celebrates its 103 year.”

Elected club officers assisting President June in 2017-18 are:

  • President-Elect: Mary Berens
  • Vice President: Frank Towner
  • Treasurer: Bill Hawley
  • Secretary: Joanne Lamoureux

The Rotary Club of Ithaca has more than 175 members. Throughout its history, the club has supported many community needs through hands-on projects, and raises funds for community grants, scholarships, youth programs, and the Rotary Student Exchange Program.

Ithaca Rotary Club Names Rotarian of the Year 2016-17
Scott Russell recognized for 25 years of service to Rotary Club

Scott Russell receives Rotarian of the Year from Dale JohnsonAt its June 28 meeting, long-time Ithaca Rotary member Scott Russell was named Rotarian of the Year for 2016-17. The award is given every June in honor of an active club member who exemplifies the Rotary motto of “Service Above Self.”

Scott (at left in the photo) was chosen for the honor by outgoing Rotary president Dale Johnson (at right in the photo), who said he selected Scott because “Scott celebrated 25 years as a Rotarian on July 1. He was club secretary for many years, having taken over on an unscheduled basis when the then-secretary was unable to continue.”

Rotary Club of Ithaca Introduces New Members
Three professionals join local service club

Ithaca, New York – The Rotary Club of Ithaca is pleased to introduce three individuals who have recently joined the service club.

Ithaca Rotary welcomes:

Dennis GrayDennis Gray is a native of Canada, raised in Toronto, Ontario. He earned a degree in commerce from Ryerson Polytechnical Institute in Toronto. He and his wife Maricelis, another new Ithaca Rotary Club member, moved to Spencer, NY in April 2016 when Maricelis took a position at Cornell University. Dennis is now founder and CEO of Backyard Brands, Inc. and has been a long-time Rotarian. He has spent significant time and effort working on Rotary International water and sanitation projects in Kenya and Uganda.

Ryan HarriottRyan Harriott is a program manager at the Women’s Opportunity Center in Ithaca. She is interested in leadership and community development, and is involved in local youth events and food pantries, and has raised money for Haitian orphanages. Ryan holds an associate’s degree from TC-3, a B.S. in human and community services from SUNY Empire, and is currently enrolled in the MPA program at Capella University. Ryan lives in Groton with her family.

Rusdi SumnerRusdi Sumner is originally from Trumansburg, NY. Her alma mater is SUNY Cortland, where she studied business economics and communications. After a stint at A.G. Edwards in Syracuse, she returned to Ithaca in 2001 to sell real estate at Audrey Edelman & Associates. Subsequently, Rusdi owned and operated Avalon Homes for ten years, and is now an associate wealth advisor at Tompkins Financial Advisors. Rusdi has served as board treasurer for Better Housing of Tompkins County, and has been on the board of Habitat for Humanity.

Community Grants Program

The Rotary Club of Ithaca announces that applications are now being accepted for its Community Grants program, which is intended to promote the quality of life in Tompkins County. Our intention is to fund several smaller grants in full. Small non-profit organizations are especially encouraged to apply. Maximum grant award is $1,000. One request per organization, please.

We invite your proposals for special projects or for needs that are not usually supported by your general funding sources. Grants are not usually made for operating budgets or endowments. All grant applications must be for projects within Tompkins County. Grants are to be expended within one year of the date of the grant, without expectation of further support.

Proposals are limited to three pages. Please submit one copy on the organization’s letterhead by Friday, August 11, 2017. (Continued)

You’ve Heard About Rotary Youth Exchange Scholarship, Now You Can Learn All About It!

Rotary Youth Exchange provides thousands of young people with the opportunity to meet people from other countries and to experience their cultures, thus promoting international understanding and peace.

The Ithaca Rotary Club still needs host families for our Rotary Exchange Students. Learn all about the program at this dedicated web site for District 7170: Rotary-Youth-Exchange.com!

Books for the World at the Friends’ Book Sale, May 2016

For the past many years, the amazing Friends of the Library Book Sale (booksale.org) has granted Books for the World access to remainders at the end of its semiannual event. This spring it was May 21 — the last Saturday, and May 25 — beyond the last day, when Rotarians were given access to comb the aisles for donations to be shipped to students overseas.

The Saturday team — Dan Weed, Dale Johnson, Bez Thomas, Janet Steiner, Edward Kokkelenberg, collected 2,857 children's books.

The Wednesday Team — Gary Reinboldt, Mary Grainger, Brad Olson, Heidi Goldstein, Dave Flaccus, Rob McKenzie, Dale Flinn, Janet Steiner, Edward Kokkelenberg collected 1,979 general interest books on Wednesday May 25.

In addition, the Cornell fraternity Alpha Sigma Phi ,Iota Chapter brothers lifted and shifted 96 cartons of books. 4Seasons Landscaping continued to donate their time and truck to get our cartons to Agway. And thanks to Andy Boerman, Agway Manager, who manages to work around our pallets while they are waiting for pick up.

The Ithaca Rotary Club began its participation in the Books for the World project in the Fall of 2010 and has collected and shipped over 82,000 books to countries where Rotarians unpack and distribute these books to teachers, schools, and librarians in 15 English speaking countries.


Highway Cleanup Conquers “Big Trash”

Thank you to everyone who participated in the trash pickup along Route 13 on Saturday, March 19. It was sunny. The temperature was cooler than normal but pleasant. Our efforts working from the Stewart Park exit to Cayuga Heights Road produced some 55 bags for the DOT to pick up. George, Dale, Bez, Walt, Frank (June's husband), June, and Bill were Rotarian "doo-ers". Many stories to tell and memories for the ides of March highway pick-up. I think we did a side of the highway that has not been done for years due to its steepness. Everyone gave of themselves as true Rotarians!
  — John Barradas

New Club Officers Voted In

At the January 13 meeting, the slate of officers for 2016–2017 was approved by a unanimous voice vote. The officers-elect are:

  • President: Dale Johnson
  • Past President: Jim Johnston
  • President-Elect: June Losurdo
  • Vice President: Mary Berens
  • Secretary: Joanne Lamoureux
  • Treasurer: Bill Hawley

The Newfield High School Interact Club collected and packed 1900 books as part of the Ithaca Rotary Club's Books for the World project. Book categories included children's books, adult books, textbooks, and reference books. The books will be sent to Rotarian operated warehouses in port cities along the African coast where they are distributed freely to schools and libraries. Brenda Barnstead, the Interact faculty advisor, is a Rotarian from the Horseheads Rotary Club.
Thanks, Interactors!