Submitted by Diane Ekberg
The August 17, 2021 meeting was called to order at the Boone Courtyard Marriott by former President Gary Moss at 7:47 am. There were 24 in person attendees, 7 Zoomers and speaker Mike Stevenson in attendance. After the Pledge of Allegiance, Sergeant at Arms Nick Friedman acknowledged Scott Davidson for managing the raffle, then collected Happy Dollars. Ben Henderson recognized the Mast General Store for its extraordinary customer service. John Cooper thanked the members for the 20+ Polio Plus pledges of $100 or more each, which with John’s match, will raise about $5,000. Nick Katers announced that his son will be in Afghanistan for 2 weeks. Nick Friedman had eggs for sale to benefit CART (and needs more egg cartons.) Ben Covington donated $20 Happy Dollars to tell a joke!
Gary Moss recognized David Jackson’s Club website updates…boonerotary.org. Check it out!
Nick Katers read Leslie Smith’s resignation email.
John Cooper suggested that everyone wear masks in the food line, which generated supportive conversation.. Lynne Mason also announced that boosters will be available and encouraged members to encourage non-vaccinated acquaintances to get their shots.
Brian Irving introduced District RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Award/Academy) Chair.Mike Stevenson. Started in Australia in the 1950s, RYLA has evolved from being an award to a leadership learning opportunity. After being cancelled in 2020, RYLA will be held the last weekend of March in 2022. It will be reduced from a week long event to a Thursday night through Sunday midday event, moving from Brevard to the YMCA Blue Ridge Assembly in Black Mountain.
Mike encourages Clubs to sponsor more students. His 2022 goal is 125 participants (up from 85 in 2019.and only half the number that can be accommodated) Any high school student is eligible in this District. Students attend at no cost; sponsoring Clubs pay $300 each. While not available this year, Clubs can seek District scholarship grants to fund half the cost in the future.
RYLA goals include 1) teaching leadership and leadership techniques; 2) creating contact networks/partnerships; and 3) creating Rotary awareness. Guest speakers, community leaders and activities are utilized at RYLA.
Mike encourages Rotarians to serve as “Rotary Coaches” to lead RYLA students through exercises, to participate in exercises and to debrief the group.
For the 2022 program, Mike has the following goals:
- More Club participation as outlined above
- Encourage diversity within the coaching ranks and participants
- Expand the reach of Club participant recruitment, ie Interact, high school visits. Children of Rotarians are eligible.
Mike wants former RYLA participants to serve as an advisory group for planning RYLA 2022. They can be high school or college students.
Registration for RYLA 2022 runs from now through February 28, 2022.
After Lane Robinson led the 4 Way Test recitation, Gary Moss adjourned the meeting at 8:32 am.