Rotary Club of Northfield, Minnesota  |  Thursday, October 22, 2020


Due to such high demand from Rotarians to pack candy, our benevolent and generous leader Vicki has allowed me to add eight (8) more slots for Treat Packing on Thursday night (6-9) at Rick's place!!  Not often do I get permission to open more slots after all are filled - so for all those who missed out and now can't shake that need to volunteer - here is your opportunity to right the ship.
Click HERE or Below
Thanks for considering,
Jim Pokorney
Local Service Committee


Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 853 8396 5788
Passcode: 601997

Rachel Reid

Rachel Reid, Bat Research in Costa Rica. Hosted by David Brown.

Conservation paleobiology is a growing interdisciplinary field that uses data and methods from paleontology and paleoclimatology to inform present-day conservation and restoration efforts. Dr. Reid will introduce the field, some of the tools conservation paleobiologists use, and share an example of her research.

Kelly Dennis and Melissa Hanson (10.18); Bruce Morlan (10.19); Barry Carlson (10.22); Rob Martin (10.23).
Mark Abbott and Neil Lutsky (10.19.2002).


Our $1000 helped get books to Togo. The two organizers on the Togo side of this Books For Africa project in northern Togo both have Minnesota connections. Akebim Moise Hezoue was a Mandela Scholar at the Humphrey School a few years ago, when he befriended Tom Warth, the founder and champion of Books For Africa, the nation’s most prolific shipper of new and gently-used books.The books are all donated by publishers and students and a whole mix of
good people. The organization has grown and now has a big warehouse in Atlanta, Georgia, as well. BFA is on the verge of shipping it’s 50-millionth book this fall, including over 100 law libraries across the continent.



Our Rotary Climate Action Team (RCAT) is dedicated to making climate change a strategic priority and to raising awareness, providing education and encouraging individuals and businesses to act in the interest of our planet.

Our Climate Action Statement - Read our climate action statement here.

For additional information about our club’s Rotary Climate Action Team chair, Alan Anderson, at 507-371-4673 or


Thanks to last week's Cogwheel Reporter, Kristi Pursell.
Sandy Campbell from Anoka Rotary; Christina from Germany.


"Vacation of a Lifetime" Anoka Travel Raffle 2020- Grand Prize $3,000 Travel Voucher, $10/ticket Checks payable to Anoka Rotary (mail to: Sandy Campbell, 10900 Independence Ave. N, Champlin, MN 55316 email: Include Name/Address/Phone/Email/Club/Number of tickets ordered.
Rice County United Way brochures hit mailboxes recently. If you'd like more info or to request a flyer. Penny shared that supporting the United Way's charity ($400,000 county-wide) "Now More Than Ever" - 2020 logo and "round up" in the coming months. 
Free Range Turkey Trot 2020: 5K Run/Walk site is live! Register here:
Help out on the Communications Team! Contact Meredith Galdeen to lend a much-needed hand:
Drive Thru Trick-or-Treat at Estenson's Shed 3-6pm, treats for kids and grown-ups, asking families to donate canned goods! Sign up to help out and donate candy to Merchant's Bank (both locations). 
BraverAngels and With Malice Toward None Initiative is designed to help organizations to move past the election so they can move forward to complete their mission. 4 meetings- first "depolarizing" meeting will be Thursday October 29, 7-8:30pm then 3 meetings after November 3rd.



Matt Hillman

Matt Hillmann, Ed.D. Superintendent of Schools — Anything but Normal: Starting a School Year During a Pandemic.

Principles: “The purpose of the 2020-2021 Northfield Public Schools COVID-19 contingency plan is to support staff in developing a seamless system of instruction and services that meets the needs of every learner regardless of the scenario.”
● Relationships first
● Equitable Access
● High-quality instruction
● Relentless Support
● Monitor and adjust
● Reasonable consistency
● Give ourselves grace
● Stewardship
● Accept that schools play a role in child care
The district made a plan for 4 learning models: in-person (K-5) Hybrid model (middle & HS), Distance learning (shift to this option for K-12 at any time), Portage 100% online model (630-ish students enrolled in this program now) 2,200 families (90%) participated in 40 minute conferences before school started in September. 12% of families have been directly impacted by COVID-19. These meetings were a crucial time to check in and talk about how to use online tools/learning models this year.
School safety protocols: 7 confirmed cases thus far (between staff & students). The protocols are not meant to prevent all infection, but the idea is that COVID will not be transmitted in school. Transportation use is down about 50% (thank you to Benjamin Bus!) The district in total is down 67 students compared to previous years. (x $10,000 each head = loss in district revenue. Half would-be Kindergarteners, perhaps we'll see a "red-shirting" effect next year?) New practices: canopies outside — new activities outdoors like book fairs. Portage/Odyssey program all online with learning coaches, modified pacing has made some adjustments and is going smoothly now.
NPS opened $41M of new building space this Fall! The first day of school at the new Greenvale Park building was exciting and Sibley has a new entryway and media center ... LOTS going on! Staff and administrators are trying new things, learning and making changes based on past mistakes. Dr. Hillmann also went over how the district is managing with school nurses and administrative assistants on the front lines and everyone using the state's decision tree.
It's not a joke. We have become complacent to COVID-19: Rice county's infection rate has increased in just the last week. If we want kids to stay in school ... be vigilant! Rotarians, as leaders in our community, must demand people are careful to protect kids and keep them in school!
Anti-Racism Work
1. Symbolism e.g. Monday's vote on policy 809: building naming policy. When we know better, we need to do better. High School Mascot logo update is next!
2. Individual Behavior **Every Rotarian can: have the confidence to call in (invite into conversation) active bystander, interrupt a comment/joke, human to human "help me understand why you think that way" retail: have the courage to say to others. 
3. System Behavior: reinforcing or interrupting? 



October 29 — Several Rotary Climate Action Team Members.

November 5Robert S. Spalding, Brig. General USAF (ret.), US-China Relations in a Post-Coronavirus World.

November 12 — Scott Wopata, CAC's Plans for Emergency and Affordable Housing.

November 19 — Ed Marek, 5960 District Governor, District Governor's Club Visit.

November 26 — Thanksgiving.

Vicki's Vision

Vicki Dilley, President

Dear Fellow Northfield Rotary Members,
How are you? I really mean it ... how are you? I really want to know and if you want to send me a note and answer this question or want to call me ... please do.   
The skies are grey, the snow is falling, it is cold outside and we have a long winter ahead of us. And ...
I am still thinking about the work of Scott Wopata and Matt HIllmann, two of our recent speakers and fellow Rotarians telling us about the challenging jobs they have right now and yet they find time and space to be hopeful and on purpose. They both spoke to me deeply in their presentations. Thank you, Scott and Matt. 
When speaking about the challenges of addressing racism in our community and were asked what we as Rotarians could do to address racism in our community,  Matt reminded us that “all the work we do as a system is undermined by individual behavior. When we see racism, speak up, be an active bystander, educate and call out to the behavior when we see it”.  When racism is spoken, ask,” Human to human, help me understand why you think that way?” 
“It is in those individual conversations we have to have the courage to speak up and say that is not how we talk around here and we are not going to put with it. Policy is a tool, but it is the individual responses where change happens. It seems to me this is how so much of how our work in Rotary happens ... individual to individual. When we improve a water system in Guatemala, we do it person to person. Todd lives in Guatemala and sees the needs, meets the people who have a vision and he shares that with us and we partner with other clubs and Rotary international. Or if a Rotarian goes on a polio eradication effort, it is one child and one Rotarian sharing this life-giving drop of vaccine. When we host or we send one student abroad to live with a new family, in a new culture, learning a new language, it is one student connecting with individuals that make up his new, well loved community. Positive change happens, one person at a time.  
During this time when our world seems to have closed in on itself, in order to keep each other safe, perhaps in order to stay warm, let’s remember how we live together, each encouraging the other to be the best they can be. Being thankful for the other and knowing that one small behavior has the potential to be something big. 
Remember to let me know how you are ... Stay safe, stay warm ... I am thinking about you.

Statement of Purpose: Northfield Rotary Club is dedicated to promoting peace and understanding through service and shared experience. We invite people from all corners of the community to join us as we partner with others to support youth, build sustainable infrastructure and preserve our planet.