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Jul 14, 2020
Evanston Reparations Initiative
Jul 21, 2020
Update on Lighthouse Club Plans to Support Environmental Sustainability
Jul 28, 2020
The annual International Service Committee Year-End Impact Report
Aug 18, 2020
Presentation of Fair Tax Amendment
Aug 25, 2020
District Govenor
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Club Service Committee - Zoom
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Aug 12, 2020
7:30 AM - 8:30 AM
 
Club Service Committee - Zoom
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Sep 09, 2020
7:30 AM - 8:30 AM
 
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Meeting Notes from July 7, 2020
The Light for July 7, 2020
 
By Kate Collinson
 
President Chris Joyce welcomed more than 40 members to the first virtual meeting of the 2020-2021 Rotary year before leading the group in the Why We Are Rotarians statement.   Louis Allred shared a Thought for the Day from Marilyn Monroe – “Women who seek to be the equal of men lack ambition.”
 
Announcements
 
President Chris encouraged members to respond to the online survey recently emailed by District Governor Lyle Staab.  The brief questionnaire seeks Rotarian feedback on when and how in-person meetings should begin. 
 
Chris explained that post-Convention Breakout Sessions are occurring during July.  Please check the Rotary International website for further information:  https://convention.rotary.org/en/honolulu/july-breakouts.   He also included upcoming Speaker Series events in the meeting agenda.
 
Joan Borg, tracker of Taste of Evanston restaurant support, announced that 272 meals have been purchased by ELRC members since April.  If you are able to do so, please consider a meal purchase from one of our restaurants – and let them know that you are from the ELRC.  It can make a real difference!
 
Bill Glader screen-shared the Virtual Taste of Evanston website developed by event planner Linda Bouvilom and her team.  With graphics, facts and videos, the website stresses the need for affordable housing in Evanston, the work being done by our two terrific partner beneficiaries (Connections for the Homeless and Reba Place Development Corp.) and ways to support the cause by donating or sponsoring online.  One can donate as easily as one can make an online purchase.  After a member question, it was decided to include information for those wishing to pay by check (payee: ELRC Foundation, mailed to ELRC, P.O. Box 445, Evanston IL  60204).  The website is currently “live” and the Virtual TOE campaign will continue until September 1.   In the coming weeks, you will receive an email template that may be shared with friends/family/past attendees who might be interested in donating.  An active social media campaign will also work to drive traffic to the site! 
 
Past President Helen Oloroso confirmed that the ELRC Rotarians of the Year (2019-2020) are Myra & Linc Janus who hosted and shepherded our Exchange Student, Potter, during a very eventful year.   Apologies to Myra and Linc that this announcement escaped last week’s The Light.   They will receive a physical award when we are able to meet again in person.   A number of Paul Harris Fellow awards will also be presented at that time.
 
Club Service Chair Katherine Peterson announced that the first Club Service Zoom meeting of the new Rotary year will be held tomorrow night – Wednesday, July 8, at 7:30 p.m.  Please contact Katherine for the Zoom link.
 
President Chris Joyce explained that the next Board meeting will be held via Zoom on Monday, July 13, at 6:30 p.m.   If Board or club members have anything to discuss, please let Chris know by Friday.   All ELRC members are welcome.  Please contact Chris for the Zoom link.
 
Marv confirmed that the Zoom link for our weekly meetings changes every week (as a security precaution).  If someone is interested in virtually visiting the club, please send their request to Marv and he will provide the link.  Forwarding our weekly link to a friend will also work!    Kristin Brown added that there is email security built into our ClubRunner website.  If you direct someone to a contact list on the club website, that will avoid spreading members’ private emails. 
 
Please remember that muting during meetings (except when speaking) is very important to minimize distracting background noises.  Thanks!
 
Roasts & Boasts
 
Nick Powers encouraged Roasts & Boasts before quizzing the membership on taxes.
 
Steve Goranson boasted Bruce Baumberger and the 4th of July Foundation for the incredible Virtual Parade they developed.  It was informative, enjoyable and fantastic!
 
Chris Joyce thanked everyone who helped him prepare for today’s meeting.  He was particularly appreciative of the support of Helen Oloroso, Bruce Baumberger, and Marv Edelstein.
 
Ann Searles boasted her granddaughter in Texas who recently graduated from college, is attending nursing school, and is one of the very dedicated workers administering COVID tests.
 
Neil Gambow boasted his daughter, Jennifer LaMaster (Assistant Principal at Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School in Indianapolis).  Jen has been working tirelessly on the complicated plans necessary to bring 800 students plus faculty/staff back to school on August 12.
 
Miguel Hernandez shared that he may have been infected with COVID-19 after a recent flight/trip to visit family.  He has a variety of difficult symptoms and is awaiting the results of a COVID test.  We wish Miguel well and encourage him to reach out at any time for help.  Your fellow Rotarians are there for you!
 
Program
 
Topic: There’ll Be Time Enough for Countin’ When the Dealing’s Done
 
Speaker: Fran Caan
 
Jackie Mack introduced our own Fran Caan, who has logged more than 20 years in the non-profit fundraising field.  Fran has led successful development/advancement efforts for the ETHS Educational Foundation, St. Chrystostom’s Church and School, and many others.  She is also a Trustee and Committee Chair of the Chicago Council on Planned Giving, an active ELRC member (Finance Chair, TOE co-Founder, Exchange student host), and a Trustee of the Woman’s Club of Evanston.  Most of us have attended club picnics in the backyard of Fran’s lovely home on Orrington Avenue  For more details, please visit Fran’s website – Frances S. Caan Non-profit Consulting, Inc.  (https://www.francescaannonprofitconsulting.com/Fran and her husband Bill, although Milwaukee natives, are dedicated Evanstonians with four children.  Fran credits her own parents’ civic and cultural involvement with developing her personal love of community service.
 
With the challenges at hand, charities need to play their cards right!  Since the coronavirus state of emergency was declared in the U.S. on March 13, 2020, markets have been erratic, businesses have closed, millions have lost their jobs, and social distancing and mask-wearing have become the best defense.  Sadly, more than 11 million cases have been diagnosed globally with more than 500,000 deaths (132,000 of those in the U.S.).
 
The only thing that is certain is uncertainty about the future!   It’s critical for charitable organizations to consider/discuss their options (and fundraisers can help facilitate these conversations).   Cases are still rising in much of the country and the obvious needs prior to COVID (affordable housing, food security, universal affordable health care) are still with us, but complicated by the disease.
 
To date, charitable donations have been polarized.  The largest non-profits with strong donor bases (Red Cross, Salvation Army, UNICEF, Rotary International) are doing well.  At the same time, grass root startups and organizations without robust communication outlets are in trouble.
 
The current crisis has no predictable linear sequence, making planning very difficult.   Non-profits must be adaptive and willing to take risks (in their delivery methods, fundraising vehicles, etc.).  Interestingly, 23% of charitable organizations are currently considering merging or partnering with another organization.   This strategic thinking is vital and these mergers or collaborations may bring increased efficiency or other benefits.
 
We all need to think outside the box.  Museums and zoos are offering virtual tours, restaurants are preparing meals for health care workers and others in need, and telehealth (where Wifi/phone access is available) has supplemented in-person health care.
 
It may be wise to ‘begin at the end’ -- visualizing who you want to be and what services must continue.   Video conferences and Zoom have emerged as new ways to provide service, but can they be sustained for months on end?  It’s important to imagine the future.  What if we need to social distance for years?  If we stopped doing 50% of what we’re doing, what should we do instead?  What if we were designing our organization from scratch today?  What trends would impact our future operations?
 
Given the cards we’ve been dealt, the statistics (record increases in cases/deaths), and the uncertainty surrounding vaccine effectiveness and timing, it’s important to engage in strategic thinking -- and ask Board members for a fresh identity, energy, and revitalized service.
 
Continuing the card play analogy, every hand has the potential to be a winner or a loser. Fran noted that many ELRC members have strong non-profit backgrounds and are associated with groups of varying sizes and strengths from which they can draw experience.   Earned income can be helpful if it supports a group’s mission.  During these stressful times, many non-profits have scaled back their plans, believing funds are need for the most critical (rather than aspirational) efforts. 
 
On a positive note, Fran cited the Evanston Community Foundation’s Rapid Response Fund, created in March 2020 as a unified philanthropic response to address immediate community need.
 
The Rapid Response Fund has raised more than $2.5 million, with $1.7 million invested in Evanston to date.  For more info on the organizations supported, please use the following link:    https://evanstonforever.org/about/news/evanston-community-rapid-response-fund-news/cumulative-activities-update/
 
Are there things that our club should be doing?  Past President Helen Oloroso noted that the pandemic interrupted ELRC plans for an organized strategic planning effort.  We were immediately thrust into reactive, rather than proactive, mode. It’s now time to consider our approach if the virus stays around for awhile. While body language can’t be easily read virtually, with foresight almost everything can be accomplished via Zoom.  Scenario planning – where a group considers a number of different potential futures – can be a helpful/powerful activity and an effective change management tool. 
 
No- or low-cost fund-raising efforts are particularly important right now.  Organizations that threw themselves into fund-raising in the first few months of the pandemic raised about 75 percent of their goals with extra hard effort.  Pandemic fatigue has likely set in, but it’s still important to keep up our messaging in support of entities that are important to us.   (And please don’t forget the arts or academia, in addition to the earlier mentioned needs!)  Our Virtual TOE is a perfect opportunity for this!   Thanks to Fran for getting us thinking!
 
Guests and Milestones
 
Club Anniversaries
 
Horton Kellogg – 29 years, July 9
 
Carol Bild – 9 years, July 10
 
Next Week’s Meeting
 
Program: Evanston Reparations Initiative
Speaker: Evanston Alderman Robin Rue Simmons
 
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