Cogwheel Archive

Rotary Cogwheel | 12.10.2015

December 8, 2015

Today: Kim Smith, Greener Businesses (Anderson)

Birthdays: John Ehresmann (12/4), Jim Holden (12/6) and Jim Pokorney (12/7).

Next Week: Linda Hibbard, Epic Enterprises (Kaczmarek)

Last Week:

Writers some times find inspiration in unexpected places. For former Northfielder Dan Jorgensen, it was a cardiac unit at Abbott Northwestern Hospital.

After emerging from triple bypass heart surgery in 2006, Dan had a heart-to-heart with his cardiologist who said he “had been hanging on by a thread.” He told Dan if there was anything he really wanted to accomplish in his lifetime, he’d best get at it.

The result is Dan’s newest release, “And the Wind Whispered.” It is historical fiction, a western adventure that weaves a variety of history’s most colorful characters together in a murder mystery set in the Black Hills of South Dakota, Dan’s home state. Dan had been living with the concept of this book for almost 40 years. Over time, he sporadically did his research and gathered notes, but until his heart event, he hadn’t committed much to paper. He finished the book in 2013, found a publisher, and it was released in June of this year.

Dan, now a resident of Broomfield, Colorado, was back in town last week to promote the book at the St. Olaf Book Store and at Content in downtown Northfield. It was a homecoming of sorts. Dan lived in Northfield for 30 years while he worked in Public Relations at St. Olaf College and later Augsburg College in Minneapolis. Dan was a member of our club and served as president. He and his wife, Susan, raised their daughters Carrie and Becky here. Both girls were Rotary exchange students.

This is Dan’s seventh book. It is published by Bygone Era Books and is available in electronic form for Kindle, The Nook and others. His publisher is a Rotarian and he donated $5 of every book sold at last week’s meeting to Polio Plus.

Besides his books, Dan blogs on “Writers Moment” and writes about senior issues.

Micro Classification:

Alan Anderson enjoyed a Rockwellian existence growing up in Owatonna. He went to Oregon State University and earned a degree in Environmental Studies. He ran a book store in St. Cloud for a number of years, before becoming an executive with the Boy Scouts of America. He retired to Northfield in 2012. He and his wife, Debbie, have two children. A son is pilot for Sun Country Airlines. Their daughter is the CFO for Arrowhead Electric Co-op.

Correspondence from Outbounds:

Jean Wakely reported that Josiah Olson is enjoying his year in Colombia. He has experienced some loneliness, but he calls it the best decision of his life. He’s making great memories and great friends through soccer and salsa dancing.

Chris Weber reported that Henry Beimers is enjoying his year in northern Norway. He is living in a small town inside the Arctic Circle. The highlight of his year was having a front row seat to a Led Zepplin-REM concert at a local club.

Jan Stevens reported that William Beimers is having a good experience in the northeast region of Brazil.

Guests: John Larson (Rich)

Scholarship Enhancement:  Northfield Food Shelf with an assist from Rob Bierman


The official numbers are still being crunched, but Robert Bierman is confident the Turkey Trot exceeded our goal of $20,000. We had 1,007 participants, and they donated 300 pounds of food to the food shelf. He thanked the committee, club volunteers and all who contributed to the event’s success.

In its first year, Northfield Y had a positive cash flow, while meeting a proven community need. It is reviving its capital campaign to pay down outstanding debt. The goal is $1 million. Rotary has pledged another $5,000 and Chris Kennelly, chair of the Y board, challenged club members to match that $5,000. If we do, our inbound exchange students will receive free Y membership for the next five years. The deadline is January 8. If you have pledged in the past, you can contact the Y office to extend your pledge for this campaign.

We have responsibility for Meals-On-Wheels in January. See Lynne Pederson if you can help.

Boxes for recycling cell phone are now available at our meetings. The phones are being collected by the Minnesota Zoo and used to fund its Recycle the Rain Forest project.

Here is a list of this year’s outbound students. Some have already departed.

  • Beimers, Henry – Norway
  • Beimers, William – Brazil
  • Carlson, Samuel -Argentina
  • Estrada, Gabriella – France
  • Hahn, Erin – Thailand
  • Hodel, Christoph – Indonesia
  • Kelley, Caitlin – Chile
  • Lunderby, Jack – Brazil
  • Mandsager, Erik – Zimbabwe
  • Muir, Mason – Taiwan
  • Olson, Josiah – Colombia
  • Regnier, Eli – Brazil
  • Rodriguez-Vazquez, Leslie – Brazil
  • Scheffert, Jenna – Italy
  • Seitz, Zoe – Denmark
  • Washburn Chapman, Ahna Cole – South Africa
  • Woitalla, Jessica – Brazil.

Past Northfield Rotary Club meeting videos on YouTube

Coming Up

December 24 — No Meeting

December 31 — No Meeting

January 7 — TBA