A surprised Julie Sgarlata is named “Rotarian of the Year” at this week’s meeting.  Sgarlata is the club’s representative to the Middle School and High School Interact Clubs and oversees the 50-50 raffle at weekly meetings.  In addition, she readily volunteers at various club events and fundraisers.  Congratulations Julie!  
Sally Bruch is recognized for her 14 years of dedicated service as Club Secretary.  She’s kept meticulous records on who is doing what for the Rotary cause including who has maintained perfect attendance throughout the year.  Sally will be succeeded by Pat Shafer.
Your new 2024-2025 Rotary Board of Directors:  (l. to r.) Paulette Renault (Sergeant at Arms), Pat Shafer (Secretary), Becky Springer (Director - President Nominee), Jonelle Bailey (President Elect), Steve Wilder (President), Brandon Diviak (Past President), Dr. Michele Jurkovic (Treasurer), and Matt Nelson (Director-President Designee). 
Incoming President Steve Wilder (left) takes the oath of office administered by outgoing President Brandon Diviak.  Wilder talked about the power of teamwork and participation for Rotarians to make a positive impact.  Wilder also passed out lists for standing committees and monthly program committees.  He invited members to suggest any changes they would like to make.
Outgoing president Brandon Diviak (right) receives the gift of his meeting gavel to close out his Rotary Year.
One last thought to ponder from outgoing president Brandon Diviak as he concluded his successful year in office.
Diviak Recounts a Busy Year for Sycamore Rotary
Brandon Diviak thanked Sycamore Rotarians for sharing their time and talents during his term in office.  Diviak recited a long list of events and fundraisers that made the year so rewarding for him.  These included:
  • The Rotary Reads to third graders
  • Painting the Shelter at Rotary Park
  • The Club steak fry
  • The great Turkey roundup/giveaway
  • Pumpkin Fest pancake breakfast
  • Meal packing for “Feed My Starving Children”
  • Christmas bell ringing for the Salvation Army
  • The inaugural “push and park” for the City’s new fire truck
  • The offsite meeting at the NIU Women’s Basketball Game
  • Supporting the non-profit Empower Parenthood Project with diaper donations
  • The annual Rotary golf outing
  • The drive-thru pork chop dinner fundraiser
Diviak gave a shout-out ”thank you” to all who made the activities successful.  He said he is confident of Sycamore Rotary’s strong foundation and undeniable momentum.
Parting Words from Our 2023-2024 Club President

Fellow Rotarians,

As I stand before you today, reflecting on this past year, a wide array of emotions have filled my heart. Gratitude. Pride. A touch of awe, even. It's been a remarkable journey, one I wouldn't trade for anything.

Taking on the role of President has been an immense privilege. Witnessing your unwavering commitment to "Service Above Self" has been truly inspiring. Not only did we create hope in our world, but we had a lot of fun while doing it! And that, my friends, is a testament to the collective spirit of this incredible club.

But achievements are only part of the story. This year has been about the connections we've built. The camaraderie we've shared. The laughter that filled this very room. We've learned from each other, supported each other, and grown together as a Rotary family.

As I step down, a deep sense of hope fills me. Hope for the future of our club, for the communities we serve, and for the world we strive to make better. The foundation we've laid this year is strong. The momentum we've built is undeniable.

Now, I pass the torch to our incoming President, Steve Wilder, with the utmost confidence. Together, with the same dedication and passion, we will continue to make a difference.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for making this year so special. For supporting me in my presidency but more importantly all that you have accomplished for Sycamore!  May the spirit of Rotary – the spirit of service, fellowship, and global understanding – continue to guide us all.

Remember to create hope in our world and Service Above Self!

Famous Birthdays This Week

June 23, 1859 – Industrialist Edouard Michelin is born in Clermont-Ferrand, France.  Along with his brother, Andre, he turned the families struggling bicycle tire business into a successful all-purpose tire company that served the burgeoning auto industry.  Michelin went on to own the car company Citroen and established the restaurant rating system of the Michelin star.

June 24, 1895 – Boxing champ Jack Dempsey is born in Manassa, Colorado, leading to his nickname “The Manassa Mauler.”  He reigns as heavyweight champion from 1919 until 1926.

June 25, 1903 – British satirist George Orwell (known for “Animal Farm” and “1984”) is born in Monthari, Bengal.

June 26, 1892 – American author (The Good Earth – winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature) and humanitarian, Pearl S. Buck, is born in Hillsboro, West Virginia.  Raised by missionary parents in China, many of her more than 70 books and stories reflect traditional Asian culture.

This Week in History
June 24, 1948 – Soviet Russia began a blockade of Berlin.  Two days later the U.S. and Great Britain began the famous Berlin Airlift.  They ultimately deliver 2.3 million pounds of food, fuel, and medical supplies to 2 million isolated West Berliners.

June 25, 1876 – General George Armstrong Custer leading 250 men attacked an encampment of Sioux Indians near Little Big Horn River in Montana.  Custer and his men were then counter-attacked by up to 4,000 Sioux Indians.  Only one army scout and one horse survived “Custer’s Last Stand.” 

June 25, 1950 – The Korean War began as North Korean troops crossed the 38th parallel and launched a full-scale invasion of South Korea.

June 26, 1945 – The United Nations charter is signed by 50 nations (formal ratification occurs October 24, 1945).

Birthdays & Club Anniversaries
Member Birthdays
Paul Barnaby
July 1
Sejal Patel
July 9
Jim Stoddard
July 11
Steve Wilder
July 26
Join Date
Steve Wilder
July 1, 2020
4 years
President – Steve Wilder
President Elect – Jonelle Bailey
Director (President Nominee) – Becky Springer
Director (President Designee) - Matt Nelson
Past President – Brandon Diviak
Treasurer – Dr. Michele Jurkovic
Secretary – Pat Shafer
Sergeant at Arms – Paulette Renault
Monthly Committees
July: Board of Directors
August: Brandon Diviak, Jeff Keicher, Pat Shafer
September: Dave Hamilton, Jeff Jacobson, Jim Stoddard
October: Paul Callighan, Matt Nelson, Paul Stromborg
November: Sue Emberson, Jeff Frank, Phil Meyer
December: Paul Barnaby, Larry Berke, Riley Oncken
January: Ray Dembinski, Joyce Klein, Rob Mondi, Tim Neubert
February: Jonelle Bailey, Becky Springer, Tasha Sims
March: Jim Buck, Chip Houdek, Brendan Wilson
April: Alicia Cosky, Bob Hammon, Jeff Petersen
May: Bob Brown, Steve Kuhn. Heather Tomlinson
June: Paulette Renault, Steve Wilder

Standing Committees

Fellowship: Paulette Renault, Pat Shafer, Larry Berke, Sue Emberson, Dave Hamilton, Pat Shafer

Foundations: Paul Stromborg, Jim Buck, Sue Emberson, Matt Nelson, Jim Stoddard

Membership: Jonelle Bailey, Ray Dembinski, Brandon Diviak, Bob Hammon, Jeff Jacobson, Steve Kuhn, Phil Meyer, Matt Nelson, Riley Oncken, Jeff Petersen, Bob Wildendradt

New Generations: Chip Houdek, Julie Sgarlata, Becky Springer, Steve Wilder

Public Image: Bob Brown, Paul Callighan, Jeff Keicher, Joyce Klein, Tasha Sims

Scholarships: Tim Neubert, Don Clayberg, Ray Dembinski, Michele Jurkovic, Steve Kuhn, Julie Sgarlata

Service: Brandon Diviak, Alicia Cosky, Jeff Frank, Michele Jurkovic, Rob Mondi, Tim Neubert, Brendan Wilson

Upcoming Events
Sycamore Rotary Club: Program TBD
St. Mary's Parish Activity Center
Jul. 24, 2024
11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Sycamore Rotary Club: Paranormal Phenomenon
St. Mary's Parish Activity Center
Jul. 31, 2024
11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Sycamore Rotary Club: Update from Rep. Keicher
St. Mary's Parish Activity Center
Aug. 07, 2024
11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Sycamore Rotary Club: DKC Forest Preserve
St. Mary's Parish Activity Center
Aug. 14, 2024
11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Sycamore Rotary Club: Coach Ryan, SHS Football
St. Mary's Parish Activity Center
Aug. 21, 2024
11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Sycamore Rotary Club: Marvin Barnes
St. Mary's Parish Activity Center
Aug. 28, 2024
11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
View entire list
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