Cogwheel Archive

Rotary Cogwheel | 03.30.2017

March 29, 2017

Today’s Program | Thursday, March 30, 2017

Today: Daniel Chien, Inbound Exchange Student (Ischler)

Next Week: Mike Eaves, St. Olaf College hockey coach (Barry Carlson)

Birthdays: Yogi Reppmann (3/27)

Last Week:
Reginaldo Haslett-Marroquin was an entrepreneur from an early age. As a kid in Guatemala, he struck a deal to muck out barns in exchange for the manure – then used it to grow the best cilantro in his village. These days, he’s running non-profit Main Street Project, an incubator for progressive agriculture project.

Regi’s recent book, In the Shadow of Green Man, shares the stories of his childhood that shaped his world view: “In my community, the story was ‘service’ – you became better and happier by serving others so they can be better and happier. If we want the world our children live in to be different than it is now, we have to create those stories for them.” Regi does this by approaching agriculture with balance, purpose, and a spiritual grounding. One example is Poultry-Centered Regenerative Systems Engineering, a closed, self-sustaining cycle of production in which every output (yes, manure too) is a resource that benefits the cycle. This system has out-produced similar-sized ag projects at the U of M and University of Wisconsin four times over.

The five principles of this ag philosophy: be healthy; fair; sustainable; transparent; and resilient. The system, designed to make the most of small spaces (5 hectares or less), is being used in Guatemala, Mexico, Honduras . . . and southeastern Minnesota, where just over 3,500 acres are yielding $74 million worth of product.

Fred Rogers shared the lessons he learned from the other Fred Rogers when they met a few times while working near each other in Pittsburgh. “Every time I met him, he was exactly just himself. He listens to you precisely – whether there are just the two of you, or a thousand people. And he was very honest.” What can we all learn from that? “Be in the moment,” Fred says. “Focus on the people you’re talking with. Be completely honest. In this way, you can be a surprising angel for someone else.”

Guests: ReJean Schulte (Richard Schulte)

Scholarship Enhancement: Our speaker, Reginaldo Haslett-Marroquin, had the good/bad luck to draw his own ticket. He declined the prize, and drew again – making Rich Lorang a little richer.


— Jean Wakely will host new-member orientation and lunch on Wednesday, May 3, from noon-1:00 p.m. at Community Resource Bank. We have added 14 new members in the past 20 months! Current members who’d like a refresher are also welcome. Please RSVP to Jean.

— There’s a ticket available for the District Conference in St. Paul on Friday, April 28. Would you like to go, and represent our club? Contact Jean Wakely.

— Dave Brown presented a Paul Harris Fellowship +1 pin to Russ Halvorsen. Our club has given a total of $288,000 to Rotary Foundation over the years.

— Northfield Rotary women were featured in the latest Girlfriends magazine published by Southern Minnesota Media earlier this month. The article talks about the growth of female membership over time and the important contributions our female members have made. The story by Beth Forkner Moe is accompanied with a photo of 14 of our members. The story can be found at

— Yogi Reppmann is hosting a Euro-Atlantic Conference Thursday, March 30 – Sunday, April 2 at St. John’s Lutheran Church here in Northfield. Here is a link for information on the conference: There is no charge and lunches and dinners are free. But please register. Yogi needs to know how many are coming. The conference coincides with Yogi’s 60th birthday so he is inviting all of us to Froggy Bottoms at 8 p.m. Friday, March 31, to share in the revelry.

— Alan Anderson’s thoughtful letter on climate change was published in the most recent issue of Rotary magazine.

— Rotary will hold a party Thursday, June 8, at the Estenson Event Center to celebrate graduation for our exchange students. The fun will begin at 6 p.m. and go to 7:30 p.m. It will also be an opportunity to thank sponsors of our Turkey Trot and Bike Tour, so be on your best behavior. We want to make a good impression.

Inbound students are:
Daniel Chien from Taiwan

Emma Nielsen from Denmark

Nico Suarez Toloza from Colombia

Eric Kwun from South Korea
Wanzita Ally from Tanzania
Matteo Lombardo, Italy

Our 2016-17 outbound students are:

Sage Brinton, Argentina

Caroline Hummel, Norway

Noah Klein, South Korea

Jane Ludwig, Colombia

Yizel Marcial, Germany

Daiki Nishioka, Taiwan

Liliana (Lily) Noble, Italy

Emma Pritchard, Taiwan

Nathaniel Urke, Brazil.

Coming Up

April 13 — Wanzita Ally, (Barry Carlson)

April 20 — Margo Squire, Nuclear Non-Proliferation (R. Flaten)

April 27 — Nico Suarez, Exchange Student (Stevens)

May 4 — Gordon Marion, St. Olaf philosophy professor and boxing coach