Message from DG Stephanie Meyer
Happy New Rotary Year! This is always such an exciting and fun time for Rotary – to celebrate and reflect on all the good work and fellowship in the previous year, while planning for the future (and as an office supply junkie, using *all* of the things to do that).  And with that transition, I am excited to take on the role as your District Governor.
First, the reflection. Many thanks and congratulations to our outgoing Governor, Vern Henricks, on a successful year of service. Leading an organization out of a global pandemic is no easy feat, and he did it with grace, compassion, and plenty of ice cream! It has been such a pleasure to work with you, and I’m continually inspired by your servant leadership. Thanks, too, to the many PDGs, district committee chairs, and Rotarians from across the state who’ve played a role in the continued success of 5710. 
This is a groundbreaking year for Rotary International – our first female president! Perhaps now more than ever, it’s so important to raise up female voices, and I’m honored to serve alongside her. I’ve been fortunate enough to have the opportunity to spend some time with Jennifer Jones, and I was so impressed – and glad we share the same taste in wine! I can’t wait to see what is in store this year on the international level as we “Imagine Rotary”.
Here in District 5710, I’m hopeful that this will be our first full “post pandemic” year and am looking forward to working with all of you as we also reimagine what Rotary looks like in each of our communities. It’s important, too, that we are always mindful of what draws most people to our organization, and that we work to re-introduce those service projects we’ve all been missing over the last two years. Growing our ranks is important, but it’s even more so that we retain and continue to engage our existing members. 
To that end, look for several opportunities to serve in each of our respective communities, and coordinated at the district level, over the coming year. And like many of us, I have a passion for international work, particularly those projects impacting women and girls or providing clean water, so expect that to flavor the next twelve months as well. I’m excited to continue to come together as a region to increase our impact – be it building bunk beds for kids in need or working to finally eradicate polio.
I am so grateful for the confidence you have in me to assume this role, and so humbled by the opportunity to serve such an incredible group of people – people of action, who are truly changing the world. 
Stephanie Meyer
District Governor

Club & District News and Events

District Conference
Save the Date! 
This year’s District Conference, “Building Champions, Changing Lives”, will be held on September 22 – 24, 2022 at Lenexa City Center’s Hyatt Place!  The event will include a Thursday evening social through downtown Shawnee’s many great local breweries and restaurants, a Friday filled with fantastic programming and opportunities for networking, brainstorming, and inspiration, and a Saturday of service. 
More details, registration, and sponsorship opportunities to come very soon! 
Rotary and Polio Plus

First, some GREAT NEWS...the Gates Foundation has agreed to extend their 2 for 1 challenge offer to Rotary for the first $50 million dollars we donate to PolioPlus every Rotary Year. That means if we donate $50 million, the Gates Foundation adds $100 million to that for a total of $150 million dollars. The extension is good for another 3 years, till June 30, 2025. That makes this one of the best investments we can make, essentially tripling your donation.

Now for some "Not so great" news.  It has been a challenging year with numerous major world events, including the Disaster Relief for the Ukrainian people and shifts in global economics.  Rotarians have been pressed to decide where to put donations among numerous worthy causes. But, recent events, like the localized outbreak of the 10 cases of Wild Polio Virus Type 1 in Pakistan reinforces our need to keep the "petal to the metal", as we saw with our past experience in India and Nigeria, which we finally overcame...and we will again in this situation. The current “Countdown to History” below highlights the progress and need for your continued support.

That's why this request is going to each and every Rotarian in our District to ask a special favor, even if you've recently given to PolioPlus this past Rotary year. District Governor Stephanie Meyer has again set the Goal for Polio Plus Donations from our Clubs at $100,000. We just succeeded this last year by donating over $105,000 and we can do it again!! Now is the time to help your club set its Polio Plus Donation Goal for 2022-2023!
So – HERE’S OUR REQUEST: Could you go to, click on the "Donate Button '' in the upper right of the page, and select Polio Fund...and give whatever you can...Be it $20 - $200 or beyond, it all adds up to maximizing the benefit of the newly extended Gates Foundation $2 for $1 match.   

Also, if you have not joined the Polio Plus Society, whereby you commit to donating a minimum of $100 per year, every year until Polio is gone, you can become a Member of the District 5710 Polio Plus Society and receive a handsome Polio Plus Society Pin. Some Rotarians choose the "recurring" option, whereby they donate a little bit each month, as little as $10 per month. The Commitment Form is on the district website.  

Thank you for your dedication to this, Rotary's #1 Priority, and the promise we made to the children of the world...a polio free world.
And “We are…This Close” as shown in our “Countdown to History”
Call or email me for ideas or help: Jim Arnett, Polio Plus District Chair
 (913) 200-0514 ~
Wild Poliovirus Weekly Update
Week Ending 1 July 2022
Total number of wild cases in 2019:  176
Total number of wild cases in 2020:  140
Total # of wild poliovirus cases in 2021: 6
Total # of wild poliovirus cases in 2022: 12(May 257, 2022)       
Total # of wild poliovirus cases this week: 2(Pakistan)
      (compared with Total of 2 for the same period in 2021)
Total number of Circulating Vaccine Derived cases - 2022: 154
 (vs. totals in 2020: 1113; & a total of 697 cases for 2021)
Please Donate @ 
District Training
Mark your calendars for District 5710 Annual Team Training!
District 5710 Annual Team Training will be on August 20th in East Lawrence at the Cider Gallery from 8:30-1:30. All District Rotarians are welcome to attend! This one-day session will offer speakers, open discussion, and a catered complimentary brunch to include your favorite brunch beverage! This engaging ½ day opportunity will focus on Foundation, Leadership/Membership, Public Image, and Training. We will be sending you a registration form via email in early July. Many District Club Leaders will attend-but we encourage all Rotarians interested in sharing diverse perspectives to attend. New ideas can strengthen our Clubs and help us keep and grow membership.
*There are still some Kansas Leadership Center Scholarships available. Check out the various dates and the virtual and/or in- person sessions on the attached flyer below. Apply now so you can secure enrollment in one of the sessions.
Have a great 4th of July,
Yours in Rotary,
DeEtte Lombard and Ellen Bogdan
District 5710 Leadership Transformation Grants
District 5710 has been awarded 30 grants to participate in the programs of the Kansas Leadership Center. The Kansas Leadership Center (KLC) is a non-profit organization committed to fostering leadership for stronger, healthier and more prosperous Kansas communities.
The KLC offers three programs that build on each other:

Your Leadership Edge is the introductory program that focuses on personal leadership competencies.  It helps participants stretch and grow their leadership while addressing their toughest challenges.

Lead for Change is the advanced, deep dive into individual leadership – helping leaders understand how to mobilize others to deal with tough problems and change processes.

Equip to Lead focuses on communications, integrating leadership principles into the organization, and facilitating real change.

These programs range from $399 to $799 in value.  The grant allows Rotarians to attend for free.

Who Should Attend?

Each club should consider sending up and coming leaders from their club and community.  The virtual sessions are ideal for clubs in western Kansas. Leaders who have done the first program should consider the second and third programs.

How To Register

To Sign Up for one of the three programs, we ask that you do two things:

1. Visit the KLC website at:  www.kansasleadershipcenter.orgCreate a personal account and register using the code Rotary2022 to waive the tuition fee.
2. Notify District 5710’s Trainers, Ellen Bogdan and DeEtte Lombard, of your interest in order that we might track Rotarians who are taking advantage of this grant.  Our contact data is:   (C: 913-683-3906)    (H: 816-858-5759)

Program: Speaking out Against Organ Trafficking presented by Shirley Hsia and Crystal Chen.
CAAHT Rotary will be hosting Shirley Hsia and Crystal Chen at its bi-weekly meeting on Tuesday, July 19, 2022, at 12:00 P.M. (CT).  Shirley and Crystal introduced themselves to CAAHT representatives while attending the Rotary 2022 International Convention.
Shirley is a full-time volunteer supporting multiple non-profit organizations after retiring from her Information Technology development and management career. She has been a Rotarian for more than 10 years and is one of the North America coordinators of RAGAS (Rotary Action Group Against Modern Slavery) to end Human Trafficking
Crystal Chen holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and currently works with a global media company as Director of Partnerships. She was imprisoned by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party), because of her practice of Faun Gong that believes in Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance. Surviving the torture and persecution before escaping to US, she made it her mission to speak for those voiceless she left behind.
Zoom meeting link:  (Waiting room opens at 11:45am CT.)  
Please email for any questions.
Emporia Rotary
Using money from a Rotary District Grant, the Emporia Rotary Club supports the Spartan Stop. Spartan Stop provides food, personal hygiene products, clothing, and access to laundry facilities for middle- and high-school students otherwise lacking those supports. Spartan Stop works closely with students and families facing homelessness to ensure they have essentials. Currently, there is estimated to be 70 children in Emporia middle- and high-school with no permanent address.
Ten Emporia Rotary Club members were involved in, consulting with the Spartan Stop director, researching lowest prices for food and hygiene items, placing bulk orders of items, assembling hygiene packs, and delivering items to the high school. It became apparent working with the program administrator that the students were in need of sturdy backpacks, as they carry most of their personal items with them. A large portion of the rotary funds were used to purchase backpacks.
(pictured) Emporia Rotary Club President, Alex Mosakowski presents ceremonial check to Emporia School District Student and Family Specialist, Heather Wagner.
Gardner Rotary
The idea began when a one of our Gardner Rotarians read an article in Rotary magazine about a club in Wisconsin that had established a pollinator garden for migrating Monarch butterflies. That idea lived through a pandemic and then took hold in the summer of 2021, when a grant application was submitted and ultimately awarded to the club, to establish a local pollinator garden.
June 11th, sixteen Rotarians and Interactors met at the Kill Creek Trailway in Johnson County and planted over 900 plants in partnership with the Johnson County Parks and Recreation Department. They provided the land – we provided the labor. The club will continue to handle all maintenance and watering of this 2,000+ sq ft plot of land.
Once established, these plants will provide pollen sources for numerous bugs, insects and yes, even Monarch butterflies. The importance of these kinds of projects cannot be overstated and the fact that Rotary has made projects like these a priority is a testament to the organization internationally as well as locally.
Leavenworth Rotary
President Shari Hansen presents her president’s award to Past District Governor, Bill Kromer; Bill is one of our Rotary rockstars!
Our latest Paul Harris Fellows; many thanks to Rhonda and Marlene for your service to our club and community; they are pictured below with Past District Governor, John Donovan and President Shari.
Four of our finest students from Lansing High School enjoyed their week at RYLA; pictured below are Katelyn Kiefer, Austin Davis, Christian Yedlinsky, and Anna Yedlinsky.  Many thanks to the Village West Rotary Club for sponsoring two of our RYLA Delegates!
President Shari rings the bell for the last time; she has done an awesome job this year and has helped to rebuild and reenergize our club as we come out of the pandemic; wonderful job at the helm, President Shari!
Manhattan Rotary
The club wrapped up the year with the following programs:
  • June 2-Tracey and Bob Debruyn, Museum of Light
  • June 9-Joe and Sheila Markley, C.L. Hoover Opera House
  • June 16-Jason Smith, Manhattan Chamber of Commerce
  • June 23-Vern Henricks, District Governor Year in Review
  • June 30-Awards Program and Passing of the Gavel
A book was donated each week to a different elementary school in Manhattan in each speaker's honor.
The club donated weekly cup money to Juneteenth.
The club sponsored the Manhattan Juneteenth event.
Members assisted with the Juneteenth 5k.
Members handed out free Schwan's ice cream at the Juneteenth fair.
The club held its annual golf tournament and social with the Konza Rotary Club.
Members turned out in force to celebrate the 100th birthday of member and past DG C. Clyde Jones.
The club was named the Best Civic Organization in Manhattan in the Manhattan Mercury's 2022 Readers' Choice Awards.  It tied with the Konza Club.
The club was named a Silver ShelterBox Hero for its contribution to ShelterBox to support relief efforts in Ukraine.  
The Club held its awards ceremony and passing of the gavel.
During the month of June and/or at the ceremony:
  • A Paul Harris was awarded to two members.
  • A Paul Harris plus 1  to one member.
  • A Paul Harris plus 3  to one member.
  • A Paul Harris plus 3 and plus 4 to one member.
  • A Paul Harris plus 6 to one member.
Three members were given Blue and Gold Awards for their contributions to the club.
A Rotarian of the Year was named for their many contributions over time to the club.
Manhattan Konza Rotary
At the last meeting of Rotary year 2021-2022, 12 Manhattan Konza Rotarians were recognized as Paul Harris Fellows. We also presented awards to our Rotarians of the Year and Quiet Rotarians of the Year, who all received Paul Harris Fellow recognition as part of their awards.
Josh Kyle, Mark Rose, and Memory Buffington became first time Paul Harris Fellows. Ron Fehr, Paul Oehm, John Poulson, and Ryan Hamel received their Paul Harris Fellow +1. Megan Plattner received both Paul Harris Fellow +1 and +2. Richard Sell, Jim Weaver, and Andy Hutchinson received their Paul Harris Fellow +2. Michelle Sink received her Paul Harris Fellow +4. Several more members who were unable to attend this meeting will be recognized at upcoming meetings. In addition to receiving his Paul Harris Fellow +2, Rich Sell was also recognized as a Benefactor.
Co-Rotarians of the Year were Memory Buffington and John Poulson. Co-Quiet Rotarians of the Year were Megan Plattner and Ryan Hamel.
Overland Park Rotary
It was another energizing Overland Park Rotary meeting, June 13, as grants were given to six community organizations through the OP Rotary Foundation, led by President Erik Rome. Each organization, receiving an Overland Park Rotary Foundation Grant, shared their mission and vision. All in attendance agreed it was an inspiring meeting and that we are blessed with such phenomenal life-giving organizations in our community.
The following organizations received the 2022 Overland Park Rotary Foundation Grants:
Avenue of Life – Dr. Evelyn Hill, Director of Equity and Justice received the grant for $5000. Avenue of Life seeks to be a transformational catalyst by breaking the cycle of poverty through community development, collaborative partnerships, and wrap-around services. This grant will be used to support the Impact KCK’s resource center.
Blue Valley Special Olympics – represented by club sponsor Andy Bowne, received the $5000 grant, on behalf of the organization. This grant will be used to introduce athletes with intellectual disabilities to the many upcoming activities offered each season and throughout the year.
KC Shepherd’s Center – Janet Carlson Baker, Executive Director received the grant for $5000. For 50 years, KC Shepherd’s Center’s vision is a community where older adults are seen, heard, respected, and living engaged independent lives. This grant will be used in a Phone Pal program connecting young adults to older adults in intergenerational relationships.  INTERACT Rotary high school programs and others will be participating.
Hear 2 Help – Karon Martin, Board Member and Volunteer received the $3000 grant. This grant will help provide children with hearing aids. Hear 2 Help seeks to increase the quality of life for children who are deaf/hard of hearing by partnering with local audiology professionals.
United Community Service of Johnson County – Rita Carr, Director of Community Planning received the $3000 grant. This organization is Johnson County’s leading agency on Continuum of Care on Homelessness. This grant will help provide gift cards and Uber rides for homeless advisor group members.
Miracle of Innocence – Darryl Burton and Lamonte McIntyre (exonerees who were imprisoned for 24 and 23 years for crimes they did not commit and founders of the organization) received the grant for $3000. This grant will be used to support innocent cases and exonerees when they come home – job referrals, health care, etc. 
Overland Park South Rotary

The Golden Scoop, an Overland Park ice cream shop that opened last year and has quickly earned a following for not only its sweet frozen treats but also for its mission to fully employ adults with developmental disabilities, has a new accolade. The Golden Scoop has earned recognition as the best ice cream shop in Kansas, according to review site Yelp’s 2022 list of “best ice cream in every state and province.” Yelp’s rankings were based on several factors, including the total volume of reviews and ratings between April 21, 2021 through April 21, 2022.  

“We are honored to be recognized as the best ice cream shop in Kansas,” co-owner Lindsay Krumbholz said. “We are grateful for the support of our community that have contributed to our success, and how they have embraced our mission in employing people with unique abilities.” Located at 9540 Nall Avenue, Krumbholz opened the Golden Scoop with co-owner Amber Schreiber last spring. Overland Park South Rotary Club visited Golden Scoop and quickly decided to support their efforts with a financial contribution as the shop carries out its mission to provide meaningful employment for challenged young adults.

Overland Park South Club members were updated recently about their involvement with Geeks for Kids, a volunteer organization that builds specialized vehicles for children. Club members participate in the builds as well as supporting the vehicles financially. Each vehicle is custom-built for every child who requires adaptations for mobility.  Some require joy stick steering, head controls, even eye-gaze controlled steering.  Since children with these special needs cannot qualify for motorized wheelchairs until they are at least 5 years old, their desire to get around and have fun can be seriously limited. Volunteers come from many robotics clubs in regional high schools and universities. This year's delivery will include 45 vehicles.  Referrals to Geeks for Kids come from parents and from every physical therapy group in the Kansas City area. Vehicles range in cost from $2200 to $3000 each.  Geeks for Kids has successfully obtained grant funding from MIT and other national organization. 

The board of the Overland Park South Rotary Club initiated a new recognition as it closed the 2021-22 program year. Designated the "1989 Award" commemorating the Club's charter year, the award is to be given to a club member with longevity who has provided service and leadership through consistent attendance, service as a board member, giving to Rotary International and the club's Future of Hope Foundation, and chairing service projects. The award epitomizes the Rotary motto of Service Above Self and was given to Club member Harold Frye.

Overbrook Rotary
Memorial Bench for PDG Jon Wilhite
The Overbrook Rotary Club would like to recognize PDG Jon Wilhite with a memorial bench to be placed in downtown Overbrook. The bench will be near the post office where for many years Jon greeted the citizens of Overbrook each morning. The Club is seeking donations to support this effort.  After the purchase and installation of the bench, any remaining funds will be applied to a service project in the Overbrook Community. 
Jon was a member of Overbrook Rotary for sixty-one years and three months, club president three terms, District Governor from 1975-1976, a Paul Harris Fellow, and a major donor to the Rotary Foundation. Jon received a Presidential Citation from Rotary International and led a Rotary group study team to Australia in 1968. Jon had perfect attendance, arrived early at all service projects, and participated in all club fund-raisers. A favorite event was the annual pancake feed with Jon’s ticket sales exceeding one thousand dollars.
Donations should be sent to Overbrook Rotary Club, Box 49, Overbrook, KS, 66524. Checks should be made payable to Overbrook Rotary. A list of donors will be given to Wanda Wilhite. For questions, please contact Randy Durbin, 2021-2022 club president, at the Kansas State Bank - 785-665-7121. Please send donations by September 1st.  Any size of donation will be greatly appreciated!
Valley Falls
President Phil Huffman presented Brooklyn Schmelzle and Thiana Brown of Valley Falls a $1,000.00 check for the FCCLA (Family, Career and Community  Leaders of America) tocompete in San Diego California for the National Convention. Six students and two sponsors will be going. FCCLA members had to qualify at the Kansas State convention to proceed to the nationals. 
The school district allotted the group $1,000.00 for the trip and the students had to raise the rest of the money from fundraisers and donations. 
Brooklyn's project topic is "The Dangers of Vaping."
Valley Falls Rotary Club 4th Annual Golf Tournament will be September 10th this year. It is our largest fundraiser of the year. If you would like to have a  team we would be glad to have you. If you have any questions please contact Club president Phil Huffman at or call him at 785-817-4766. 

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