Cogwheel Archive

Rotary Cogwheel | 04.07.2011

April 7, 2011


Rotary Cogwheel: Thursday, April 7, 2011

Today’s Program: Elena Henrick, Nicaraguan NGO

(L. Dilley)

Happy Birthday: Beth Bergmans (4/2)

Next Week: Save the Depot, Rob Martin (Wilmot)

Last Meeting:

For Matt Hillmann, director of Human Resources and Technology at Northfield Public Schools, life is all about being in the right place at the right time.

For instance, he holds the distinction of scoring his high school soccer program’s first goal when a ball glanced off of him and was redirected into the net. GOOOOOAAAAALLLLLLL!

When he moved from New York City to Madelia, Minn. he was hired to teach computer education on the strength of his ability to find the on/off switch on a computer. And that’s how it has gone for him.

Matt grew up in the Finger Lakes region of New York and graduated from St. John’s University. His passion was sports, and initially he wanted to be a sports writer. He was able to work during his senior year for a Gannett newspaper in Elmira, NY covering many sports – including a short stint writing about the local minor league baseball team. But ultimately, he was drawn to education.

In Madelia, he was also the tech director and coached basketball.  He worked as a tech director and Principal in Belle Plaine before moving to Northfield 18-months ago, with his wife, Mary, a math teacher, and their three children.

Some of the things he has learned along the way:

— The Internet is a great equalizer between large and small schools;

— His work at a Bronx, N.Y. YMCA taught him not to pre-judge people;

— He believes education is all about relationships.

Northfield was a “dream destination” for Matt, and he said the community has exceeded his expectations.


Guests: Michael Gunderson (Fenton), Clarice Grabau (Grabau), Jennifer Labowitz (Will), and Jerm Daylor (Maus).

Scholarship Enhancement: John Ehresmann


— President-elect Rob Bierman is registered for the national convention that will be held this year in the “Big Easy,” New Orleans.

— Vicki Dilley is looking for animal, bird-free host families for an inbound exchange student from Sweden.

—The Rice County Historical Society is hosting a Civil War commemorative event with re-enactors and artifacts at the Guild House in Faribault Saturday, April 9, 1-4 p.m.

— Keith Covey, a board member of Northfield Downtown Development Council, encouraged members to voice their opinions about a proposal to close the downtown United States Post Office and move retail operations to the depot off South Highway 3.

Coming Up

April 21 – Incoming Student, Miguel Carvalho, (B. Abdella)

April 28 – Mary McNulty, President of “You are Special”  (VanBlarcom)

Welcome Our Newest Members:

Devon Barnes, Beth Bergmans, Ryan Blumhoefer, Barry Carlson, Jim Holden, Michelle Lasswell, Tim Madigan,

Don Robertson, Betsy Spethmann and Roberto Zayas