December 2017
December is Rotary International family month with a focus on disease prevention and treatment. Globally, Rotary is recognized for its signature project, the eradication of polio in the world. It has been a long and hard battle but with the support of many governments, NGO’s and volunteers throughout the world we are close to seeing the end of this dreaded disease. Despite this progress there are many other problems facing our planet and populations around the world. One of the greatest causes of death and disability in developing countries today is from water borne diseases resulting from a lack of adequate water supplies and improper sanitation. Rotary in its Water, Sanitation and Health or WASH program is committed to becoming a leader along with other organizations in finding practical and sustainable solutions to these major problems. In addition each year malaria, despite awareness and advancement in medicine, continues to be a major killer of hundreds of thousands of people. Rotary can celebrate its successes in the field of health and disease prevention but we, as Rotarians, cannot rest on our laurels. There is still much to be done. We can set an example for the rest of the world to follow.
Further, disease prevention must include attention to mental health. The stigma of mental illness is finally being lifted and Rotary has a unique opportunity to help our communities recognize and direct people with diseases that impact mental health towards proper treatment. We, as Rotarians, understand the silent turmoil within some communities that are homeless, or those who contend with post-traumatic stress disorder, like some of our military, first responders and others, as well as the difficulties some of our youth face in this age of digital communication and bullying. We can be trained to recognize and respectfully give support and direction before this invisible illness ends in suicide or acts of violence.
On the local front here in Colorado we are one of the worst states in the US for childhood immunization rates. In the latest report from the Department of Health and the Colorado Children’s Immunization Coalition in 13 counties of Colorado less than half of the children are adequately vaccinated. The report indicated that 57,000 students and 8,000 children in licensed day care centers in Colorado are not up to date with their immunizations. There are hot spots, some in well educated and affluent areas of the state, where many schools and day care centers show inadequate immunization of their children inviting unnecessary illness and even death not only for the unimmunized and the under-immunized but also for those children who cannot be immunized for medical reasons. Most of this lack of immunization of our children is not for medical or religious reasons but rather because misinformation surrounding the dangers of immunization, the lack of information about the benefits of immunization, and also the ease with which parents can opt out of shots for their children. Besides the unnecessary suffering of children, in 2015 charges for the treatment of vaccine-preventable diseases in Colorado children totaled more than $35 million added to our health care costs, not to mention the indirect costs from loss of work and wages of parents caring for these children. Among children in Colorado who were hospitalized for vaccine-preventable disease, 66.5 percent were four years of age or younger. The benefits of early and adequate vaccination of children and caregivers far outweighs any potential risks from this miracle of medicine.  As parents we have a right to care for our children as we see fit but society also has rights to safe schools and safe environments for our children.
Many of us recently spent a day of gratitude with family and friends. This year let us carry our gratitude into action and do our best to create awareness and change in the world, particularly when it comes to health. In our district, we are blessed with access to immunizations, healthcare, and resources, and despite the limitations of the system, we are incredibly lucky to have this access and thus reap its benefits, from disease prevention and treatment to longer life spans. Now it is our duty as Rotarians to expand these resources to our entire communities and beyond.
Mid-Year Presidents Meeting
January 20 - 8:30 pm to 12:15 pm
Red Rocks Community College
This event is free but we need you to register! REGISTER NOW 
Grants Training & Club Qualification
January 20 - 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm
Red Rocks Community College
Grants Club Qualification Training for 2018-19 grant requests. REGISTER NOW 

Rotary Education Institute (RLI)
January 27 - 8:00 am to 3:00 pm
Red Rocks Community College
Perfect for any Rotarian who wants to learn more about the larger world of Rotary and build the leadership skills. REGISTER NOW 
The 11th annual State of the State Luncheon co-sponsored by the Rotary Club of Southeast Denver and District 5450 will be held December 7th at the Denver Marriott Tech Center (noon to 1:30 pm).  In addition to keynote speaker Susan Klebold, Governor John Hickenlooper will address the State’s efforts in the areas of mental health and wellness.  CLICK HERE for the EVENT FLYER. The luncheon will be preceded by a Mental Health Symposium presented by the Rotary Mental Health Initiative (9 am-11:20 am; Free/Registration Required) and a Mental Health & Wellness Expo (11:00-11:55 am; no charge to attend). FOR MORE INFORMATION & TO REGISTER CLICK HERE.
Registration is now open for the RI President's Dinner & Polio Fundraiser!
January 6, 2018 - Denver Marriott South, Lone Tree
Hear from RI President Ian Riseley & a polio update from Rachel Lonsdale of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
The event has sold out the past two years so register early! Click Here for More Information
Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Dinner, Rodeo, Dancing Horses!
You must order tickets by Jan. 7 using the attached form.
2018 Annual Ski Week - Snowmass/Aspen
January 27 - February 3, 2018
 ♦ Join fellow Rotarians throughout the world!
 ♦ Visit for more information
May 19-20, 2018
Hyatt Regency Denver Tech Center
Save the Date for May 19 and 20, 2018 for a celebration of Rotary with keynote speakers like former DU Chancellor Dan Ritchie addressing how Rotary can help reach  consensus in a divided society.  Add to this break out sessions, panel discussions, and club projects that show Rotarians of action creating lasting change in our community and you have an action packed 36 hours of fun and fellowship celebrating Rotary.
Registration will open soon!
The top six reasons a Rotarian should plan to attend their first Rotary International Conference in Toronto June 23-27, 2018:
  1. It couldn’t be any easier to go. There are three-hour non-stop flights for less than $500.
  2. Toronto is an easy city to navigate.  Public transportation works well and there are no language issues.
  3. Toronto is a fun city that is world famous for its food and entertainment.
  4. World-class speakers, entertainment and programs provide opportunities that most people will never experience.
  5. Attending will make you even more proud to be a Rotarian by providing you with an enormous sense of connection and appreciation for the greatness and effectiveness of Rotary around the world.
  6. No matter what your Rotary passions are, the connections you will make and the resources available in the gigantic House of Friendship will make you a better Rotarian and improve your projects’ results.
For more information and to register visit
Rotary District 5450 is accepting nominations for our 2020-2021 District Governor. Any Rotarian, who has served as club president, is a member in good standing of his/her club, and been a member of Rotary for at least seven years when he/she becomes District Governor, may be nominated.
This nomination must be accompanied by a formal resolution adopted at a regular Rotary Club meeting or by the club’s Board of Directors. Applications must be submitted by January 31, 2018 - click here for the application. Review of nominations and interviews must be completed by February 28, 2018. Any past club president interested in serving as District Governor should contact his/her club President for nomination by the club. Nominations for District Governor are to be submitted directly to the Chair of the DG Nominating Committee, Past District Governor Bill Downes by January 31, 2018 at
The position of District Governor is both rewarding and challenging. All Applicants should be aware that it is a three year assignment, not including one or two post assignment years as Past District Governor. The selected Nominee will work closely with District leadership and Rotary International before becoming District Governor to guide our District in serving the Rotary mission in the coming years.
It is an honor and a privilege to serve Rotary in this way. Thank you for your prompt response and consideration of this very important role.
I am a 66 year-old Post-Polio patient who had Polio during a Texas epidemic in the summer of 1958. I am one of the fortunate ones who survived the Iron Lung, regained the ability to breath on my own, regained mobility and had the best medical care available at the time. Unfortunately, Post-Polio has been a part of my life for at least the past 45 years. I am a member of Grand Lake Rotary, but live in Brewton, Alabama during the winter months since I do not function at my best during cold weather.
In late May, 1958 after my first grade year in Elementary School in Dublin, Texas, I contracted Bulbar Polio.  I believe that I contracted the disease after wading and splashing in a creek near our home which contained stagnant water. Within a couple of days, I began experiencing influenza-like symptom with headache and fever. Soon, paralysis began which our family doctor determined to be the onset of Polio. My father carried me to the family automobile and my parents drove me to Fort Worth, to Cook's Children Hospital.  My pediatrician met us there, and tests were begun to determine the cause of my illness.  After a painful spinal tap to obtain spinal fluid, the diagnosis was confirmed.  I was then transferred to John Petersmith Hospital, where Catholic nuns were caring for Polio victims.  We were quarantined and put in wards with other children with the disease. 
Soon, it was determined that I could not breathe on my own, and I was placed in an "iron lung", perhaps the most frightening part of my overall experience. My world was reduced to a metal cylinder with a mirror above my head in which I viewed what went on around me. I can only imagine what my poor parents were thinking about my situation; I did not see my parents while I was in the hospital during what was considered the contagious stage of Polio.  I have very few memories of this time in my illness beyond the kindnesses of the nuns who floated through the ward in long black habits. 
I’m a glass half full person, so I think we have a little more than half of the Rotary year still ahead of us. Lots of time to share Rotary with our soon-to-be new members.
That said, we have no time to waste. Oh, and the HOLIDAYS are here.  We can’t do anything about membership during the holidays, we’re too busy. Nah, the holidays are a GREAT time to invite guests. They get to see us at our best. We’re helping others, collecting food, hosting Santa, having parties, sharing the best of the season of reflection, peace, and joy. (and Egg Nog, and cookies)
It’s the season of giving, after all.  Rotary is a great gift to give.  Let’s not keep Rotary to ourselves this holiday season. Wrap up an invitation with a ribbon and give it to that person you’ve been thinking about inviting.  They just might get the idea that Rotary is pretty special, and so are you for inviting them.
I say let’s do something different this year. Instead of giving in to the notion that we’re too busy during the holidays, let’s turn that on its head and say, “It’s an ideal time to show a new person what Rotary can look like!”
Exemplary Membership Growth (in alphabetical order)
  • Denver Stapleton
  • Denver Tech Center
  • South Jeffco
Club, District, District Governor and RI Awards are given out in the spring of each year to those clubs and individuals showing great service to others in their communities and throughout the world. Applications must be received by March 1 for most awards.
You can view a PDF overview of all of the awards by clicking here. For information and an application for each award visit the award section of the District site by clicking here. There are two new Mental Health Initiative awards this year - be sure to check them out. Remember, you can not be recognized and win if you do not apply!
The Polio Plus Committee hopes you can join in the festivity of the RI President's Dinner on January 6th: meet our RI President, Ian Riseley, hear the latest news on Polio Plus campaign from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation representative Rachel Lonsdale, celebrate our District's generosity at the half year point, and....enjoy drinks, dinner and conversation with fellow Rotarians. Who could ask for anything more?!
Please remember, there are several challenges in our fundraising for Polio Plus. First, announced at the 2017 Rotary International Convention, we have accepted the B&M Gates challenge to raise our matched contributions from $35M to $50M. To that end, our 5450 Polio Plus Committee continues to honor those clubs that meet our aspirational goal of at least $50 per member to this campaign. As of November 24th there are six clubs that have met the challenge. Several others are close. Announcements at the President's Dinner will be based on the posted figures available as of January 2, 1918.
Our thoughts are with all District 5450 Rotarians during the next month of joy-filled celebrations.  We are hoping to see you on January 6th.
Do you take time to discuss your wants, needs, surprises, hopes, and dreams with your significant other?  Do you plan, and then execute that plan, recognizing that you are achieving your plan?
When you are intentional in your planning, you also have a chance to evaluate your giving, and make sure that you are on track, or possibly even able to increase your giving to your favorite organizations and charities.
Why would you consider the Rotary International Foundation as a recipient of your gifts?  As a Rotarian, this is a reasonable consideration.  And, to help you with your decision-making, here are a few significant points about our Foundation to consider.  The RI Foundation is...
  • Successful in tackling serous global issues including the eradication of polio
  • A leader in creating peace, starting with a role in chartering the United Nations
  • 100 years old with a history of success and stability
  • Highly rated by independent rating agencies (such as Charity Navigator and the Association of Fundraising Professionals)
  • An engaged global network of 1.2 million community leaders and volunteers
  • A major collaborator with other leading organizations
I believe that leadership is stewardship and that stewardship leadership starts with a conscious decision to model stewardship, in behavior and by example.
So if we as community leaders are working and advocating for responsible, effective, efficient use of charitable dollars, we have to model it…
  • In our decision making.  Each Rotarian’s process for making decisions will look different.  How can we as leaders model and teach practices for strong decision making?
  • In our giving.  As a leader, it’s imperative that we, the leaders, give too.  How do we tell the story that our giving is a part of our decision to provide Service Above Self and to help others?
  • In our invitation.  A Rotarian gives voice through shared conversations with family, friends, and co-workers about the great work that Rotary does around the world.  How do we invite others to join Rotary in serving, leading, and giving to worthy projects?  Do we tell others of our Rotary stories?  How do we tell them?
  • In our thanking.  Gratitude is a sign of abundant life and living.  How do you show and give thanks?  Is Rotary part of your planning?
As you enter this holiday season, please know that we are also grateful for all of you, our fellow Rotarians, who share your volunteer time and talents through club service, community service, vocational service, international service, and/or youth service.  Sharing stories, ideas, inspiration, and support of one another is just as important as asking this question:  What is your year-end plan to gift The Rotary Foundation, a proven wise investment doing remarkable work around the world?
The Rotary Foundation recently released its recognition awards for District 5450.  Congratulations to all our clubs who are receiving awards!  The awards are being delivered to clubs in person or through the mail.  Our district awards include the following clubs:
Imagine you have an idea… that will change the way people think openly about mental illness; or identify conceptually what a local Rotary Club can do to improve mental health education and awareness opportunities within its community; and most importantly you have the courage and potential to spread the Mental Health word in Rotary throughout the District, the State, the United States and perhaps even the World. Could this idea become reality?
Fast forward four short years: The Commerce City Rotary Club’s Mental Health Initiative (CCRC-MHI) did just that – with conviction, dedication and high energy, the initiative went from a single “Power of One” idea to spreading the mental health word to hundreds of International Rotary Clubs at the 2017 Atlanta Rotary International Convention.
During the Atlanta convention, a small Commerce City delegation had the distinct opportunity and pleasure of speaking directly with over 360 Rotarians from 35 different countries that visited the booth exhibit for the Mental Health Initiative. Most Rotarians indicated that mental health awareness and education was seriously needed in their countries and remarked about how the Mental Health First Aid course offering would be great way to start talking to increase awareness and education and reduce the stigma of mental illness. CCRC is now in contact with several of these International Rotarians and is in the early stages of developing a plan to offer a webinar to Rotarians in Pakistan, India and other countries on the subject of how to kick off a mental health initiative type project in their communities. So yes, the CCRC Mental Health Initiative (CCRC-MHI) has indeed gone international!
Rotaraction ( is an online Rotary club for 18 to 30-year-old people, and is accepting new members.  The structure of Rotaraction differs significantly from Rotaract. First, it is entirely online, second the primary communication tool is a smart phone app.  Third, all Rotaraction members will be full Rotarians.  
Rotaract Clubs will not be impacted as their value proposition is quite different and still valid. Rotaract is geographically bound just as Rotary Clubs are, Rotaraction, by being online, will not have geographic boundaries nor regular meeting times.
Rotaraction was formed to fill a need - a way to get/keep young people involved in Rotary, especially since Rotary currently has a limited value proposition for this demographic. The online meetings will consist of “Blog” posts and discussions, each member will have responsibility for writing blogs and responding. In addition, each member will be required to do a minimum number of hours of community service during the quarter.  We will encourage them to create a relationship with a local Rotary Club.
Our research has shown that this demographic has very little desire to spend time in meetings, they want to communicate quickly, easily and at their own convenience. They much prefer to engage in service projects. Many are in college and even if there is a Rotaract club, attending meetings can be too time consuming. 
In addition to the time issue, belonging to most traditional Rotary Clubs is cost prohibitive. Our college members face many costs and often have little opportunity to earn money. Our working young adults also tend to have limited disposable income. Therefore, the club dues are just enough to cover District and RI dues.
Officers:  President: Mary Sand
               Vice President: Mckenzie Purdue
               Secretary: Katie Kelley
The attached report shows Annual Fund and Polio Plus goals entered by each club into Rotary Club Central, and the numbers and per capita achieved by each club (arranged by Area.)  The District 5450 goal is to have an increase in Membership, and for Every Rotarian to give something Every Year (EREY).

Have something to add to the lists?  Email

Russell Hampton
National Awards Services Inc.

Rotary District 5450 - Colorado, USA
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