Rotary Club of Northfield, Minnesota  |  Thursday, July 16, 2020


Here is the link to the 4-Way Taste Virtual Summer Fest flyer: Or, you may buy tickets at:
This Week's Meeting
This week's speaker:
Tom Thorfinson
Tom Thorfinson, chief strategist for Rotary International (and a past chair of North Star RYE), will speak about COVID-19 and RI’s new seventh focus area, the environment. Tom lives in Edina, graduated from St. Olaf and he joined Rotary when he was a young man, early in his career as a lawyer. 
Kari Nelson (7.12), Jan Stevens (7.15)
Ellen Iverson (7.17.2019).

ZOOM in Thursday, July 16, 2020
Members: Watch for a separate email message with login information for this week's Zoom meeting.


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.

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



Janine Atchison introduced Melissa Hanson, the new housing coordinator for the City of Northfield.

Todd Thompson sang Wemowe with great flair.


New member: Don Stager, sponsored by Richard DeBeau, is a former RYE Outbound who has lived in Northfield for 18 months.

Reminder: Four Way Taste July 31. Musical entertainment will be Steve Jennings, Craig Wasner and Todd Thompson, via Zoom so every host will be able to show it.

Environment as the new seventh area of focus of Rotary International has been adopted with unanimous approval. So these efforts will now be supported by Global Grants. Great news.

Rotary masks are available at Vicki's home, 714 Highland. Get a mask from the cooler outside and leave $10 in the cooler.

Literacy: Thanks to everyone who has volunteered to restock the Little Libraries with kids’ books. They are available in bins outside the Methodist Church for restocking in your neighborhood. One more person is still wanted. Rick Estenson offered his space to store any donated books.

Bruce Morlan had another Op Ed published and has been appreciating the District 5960 series on racism. 

Vicki Dilley shared sad news from our exchange student Itty, Inbound from Indonesia last year, whose mother died July 3 of COVID-19. Moment of silence.

Barry Carlson has a new grandson, Finnbjorn, who came a little early and needed some surgeries, but is now doing well.  

Vicki asked those wanting to make announcements to try to get the information to her by Wednesday. She can then create a slide for use during the meeting.


Rick Olson, Nakivale Refugee Settlement

This year’s European tours have been rescheduled for next year.

Uganda, in East Africa, has a population of 45 million, primarily Christian. English is the official language.

Nakivale, consisting of 79 villages, established 1958, is one of the oldest refugee settlements in the country. 140,000 refugees were living there as of last month, half under 18. There has been a massive increase in the past 10 years of people who have had to flee their countries to survive.

Roseville Rotary sponsors a Rotaract Club in Nakivale. One of its members founded the Best Future School there. There are more than 100 kids to a classroom, and the children do not have enough to eat. When Rick Olson visited recently, he brought some teaching supplies and cell phones. Electricity and Wi-Fi have now been acquired, and a Rotary grant will help to build a school kitchen. 

Needed: Individual or club donations to Best Future Center, the nonprofit that runs the school, for wages, school supplies and food for the students; also club contributions to the Global Grant, as they are applying for funds to build three additional classrooms.



Dick Huston, Polio Eradication in Pakistan

Dick has been president of Rotary in Faribault and is part of the district Polio Plus team.

The last U.S. case of polio was in 1979, and the last in the Western Hemisphere was 1994. Rotary launched PolioPlus in 1985 and was a founding member of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative in 1988. 2.6 billion children have been vaccinated. Rotary alone has raised 1.6 billion for this effort. 

PolioPlus has four objectives: prevent disease, create jobs (vaccine workers, local health workers), improve health care and provide clean water. Polio is spread primarily through water. Rotary Clubs in Pakistan have built water treatment plants that provide the only potable water available for many. 

Pakistan and Afghanistan are now the only two countries with polio cases. The rugged, dangerous border area between the two countries, where people cross back and forth, is particularly challenging. Polio workers have been killed. Social media spreads false information, leading to vaccine refusals. Workers are tired, and COVID-19 now creates a greater risk. 

Rotary discourages Rotary teams from going to Pakistan, as they may become targets, but doesn't discourage individual invitations. In November Dick flew to Karachi. He spent a week there full of activities, including attending four Rotary meetings involving eight clubs, where he was warmly welcomed.

Pakistan is the 30th largest country by area with the sixth largest population, so it is dense. Islam is the predominant religion. English is widely taught. The progress of women’s rights is shown in the mandate for a certain percentage of seats in the legislature reserved for women, but women are still not educated as much as men are.

Three doses of the polio vaccine are needed for full immunity. While the ideal would be to have children vaccinated in hospitals where records are kept, this is unrealistic for most. Few children in slums get three doses.

There is a major vaccination effort on buses and trains coming into Karachi. They get stopped a few miles out so vaccine workers can board the bus, identify kids who are under 5, and vaccinate them. 3,000 are vaccinated each day. 


July 23 — Todd Jenkins, Rotary Diversity and 2020He calls himself Mr. Bowtie and you will know why shortly into his presentation. Todd will speak about Moving from Diversity to Inclusion.  Dr. Jenkins is a certified Leadership Management International facilitator, coach, and speaker with more than 10 years of training and development, leadership development, and diversity and inclusion work experience. Todd was an outbound Rotary Exchange student and is a regular speaker at the Rotary International Youth Exchange events.  He will make you life and most likely make you think. (V. Dilley)

July 30 — Sean Carroll, President of Arera. (Rogers)

Vicki's Vision

Vicki Dilley, President

Hello Friends,

Here we are in the middle of July already and the weather could not be more perfect!  

Your Rotary Board met yesterday afternoon, we had 4 guests join us.  
We had a few changes in our Board configuration recently. Mark Abbott will oversee the International Service Committee, Meredith Galdeen will oversee Communications and Public Relations and Beth Kallestad will come on as Committee Chair for Diversity and Inclusion (something new being born out of grassroots concerns from our Club members as well as highlighted issues of our day). We welcome these folks along with Kari Nelson (Secretary), David Stanford (Treasurer), Todd Thompson (Membership), Tony Huettl (Club Service), Andrei Sivanich (Fundraising) and Jake Conway (Community Service) and Barry Carlson (Past President). 
We wrestled with the budget for 2020-21 and did not yet come to some firm decisions on certain items. It is very hard for any of us to predict where our fundraisers will land us, but we will do our best to make some educated guesses.   
We have a few critical items that we decided we would like input from all of you before we make some decisions. So, when you see that Survey Monkey come your way, please fill it out as soon as you can so that we make sure we hear from as many as possible.   
Do you know of a potential speaker to our Club? Remember we are not bound by geography right now ... we can ask people who might be several time zones from us. Please let Tony Huettl or me know if you have an idea of someone.
The 4-Way Taste Festival committee has been working very hard, all fundraisers are looking different from years past. As I write this 31 boxes have been sold, our bottom line goal was 40, I do believe we can make that. Thank you for supporting this our first and possibly main fundraiser this year. Thank you Anika and Brent for leading this committee with flexibility and creativity!
Have a great week!   


Our Local Donations at Work 

Ever wonder where our local donations go? During the 2019-2020 Rotary fiscal year, the Rotary Club of Northfield supported 11 local causes with a total of $6000.

Northfield Healthy Community Initiative: TORCH Revolving Student Loan Fund - $500; TORCH Snack Pack Project - $500.
Northfield Community Action Initiative: Hygiene Product Initiative -$750; Operation Backpack - $300.
Northfield Public Schools: Move 5 Reading Improvement Program - $500.
Northfield Union of Youth: Wallflower Project - $1,000. 
Northfield Area United Way: Imagination Library - $500.
Northfield Youth Choir: Tour Scholarships  - $500.
Health Finders Collaborative - $450.
Hope Center - $500.
Ruth's House - $500.
Contact Local Donations/Good Neighbor Award chair Carl Caskey with any questions.

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.