Against the Current
We have had some tremendous speakers this year, but I think this week's presentation may have been my favorite. We heard from Professor Joe Starita of the University of Nebraska Lincoln regarding his latest book: “A Warrior of the People, How Susan La Flesche Overcame Racial and Gender Inequality to Become America’s First Indian Doctor.

Dr Susan La Flesche-Picotte (1865-1915) was an Omaha Indian and “Omaha” literally translates to English as “against the stream.” Dr. La Flesche-Picotte spent her entire life going against the stream and Joe’s book recognizes, describes and documents the magnitude of her accomplishments.

Joe donates all royalties from his book (and from his previous book on Standing Bear. “I Am A Man”) to a scholarship fund he has established for native american high school graduates. So be sure to support Joe’s efforts, and pick up a copy of the book.

If you were not able to stay to get a copy of the book from Joe today, you can get one at your local bookstore or online. It is a great read! Every Nebraskan and every Rotarian should know and take pride in this story of a strong Nebraska woman who broke through so many barriers.

Joe, you are a real Nebraska treasure. Thank you for being with us today and sharing the story of Susan La Flesche.

Foundation Month
Thanks to Heather Legge for her announcement today about our matching program for Rotary Foundation donations. Feel free to call Heather, or myself with any questions about Foundation giving.
To summarize:
Our Club goal this year is to raise $20,000 for the Rotary Foundation. Achieving that Goal will require an average of more than $100 giving from you and every member of our Club.
We cannot achieve this goal without your help.
  • So give $100 and become a Paul Harris sustainer for this Rotary year.
  • Give $200 or more and get an additional $100 of Foundation recognition points from our Club
  • Or join those of us in the Paul Harris Society by giving $1,000 or more per year. We have a number of Club members in this category and we’d love to have your participation as well. It’s easy to do using automatic donations through Rotary Direct on the website.
Thanks to each of you for thoughtfully considering this request.
Good News:
We had a lot of good news this week:

Tim Cavanaugh let us know that he is working hard on the MUD Board to keep rates down. He tells us we should expect our overall bills in the coming year to be slightly lower than last year (which was slightly lower than the year before).

Jim Stewart is retiring from First National Bank at the end of the year. Congratulations Jim on a tremendous banking career.

Forest Newburg from Millard Rotary let us know that on Monday, January 8, his club will have Tom Osborne as their lunch speaker at the German American Society on South 120th. TO will talk about the Teammates mentoring program, and questions about Scott Frost are verboten (Yeah, sure). Anyway, a great opportunity to hear Tom speak if you are available (but don’t miss our club’s Outland Trophy luncheon at the Double Tree downtown on Wednesday that week).
Roger Holthaus reminded us of his experience, in the summer and fall of 1961, reconecting with his high school friend, Tom Osborne, who at that time was playing for the Redskins, and Roger got to enjoy some meals with the team, an experience he’ll never forget.
Judge Lyle Strom, now retired, recently participated in an honor flight to Washington DC to recognize his service in World War II. Lyle, thank you for your service in the military back then, and for your many years of service on the federal bench.
Judge Lori Smith Camp, Chief Judge of the Nebraska Federal District Court, announced this week that she will be taking senior status. Congratulations Judge Lori on this latest, but certainly not the last, milestone in a tremendous legal career.
Don McGonigal is celebrating his 72nd wedding anniversary with his lovely wife Ruth. Congratulations to Don and kudos to Ruth. A tremendous accomplishment!
John Mock shared some advice for the Husker football team and their new coach, that appeared in the World Herald’s Public Pulse from former UNO football coach Sandy Buda: “Find the best available teacher/recruiters for the rest of the staff. Then go recruit the biggest, nastiest linemen. That’s the foundation. And I don’t care if they are not Rotary Club candidates.”
So Coach Frost is going to have to look elsewhere. I know we all wish him the best.
Next week:
Next week we have Dan Lambe with the Arbor Day Foundation, giving us an update about this important and unique Nebraska organization.

Remember, if it's Wednesday, the place to be is Downtown Rotary.

See you next week!