Welcome to District 5495 Club News

For the past six years the Rotary Club of Sedona has recognized organizations and individuals who have made a difference in their Sedona community.

This year the Make A Difference award was presented to Superintendent and JH/SH Principal of Sedona-Oak Creek Unified School District, Dennis Dearden. Dearden was awarded because of his leadership in starting West Sedona School's Wildcat Extended Day Program benefitting students and their working parents.

The award comes with $1,000 that he will give to the Sedona-Oak Creek Educational Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, he helped to start to fund innovative and supplemental programs that are outside the normal operation of the school district. 

The club also recognizes a club member who has gone above and beyond in his/her role, putting “Service Above Self.” The award this year was given to Dick Youngberg, chair of the club’s International Services Committee. Youngberg was chosen because of his leadership hosting and participating in annual Mexico/USA Friendship Conferences and the relationships he has forged with Rotary Clubs in Mexico. He’s been a dedicated club member for nearly 13 years.

Rigo Duran, president of the ASU-Thunderbird Rotary Club, recently donated $3,000 to the Central Arizona chapter of Habitat for Humanity. The gift reflects funds from the now-closed Rotary Club of Phoenix East.
Rigo was formerly a member of the Phoenix East club, which turned in its charter in June. Transferring to the ASU-Thunderbird Club, Rigo took on the role of president of the club.
Members of the Phoenix East club are distributing funds from its charitable foundation, and Habitat for Humanity was chosen as one of the nonprofits to receive a gift.
Rotarians are well known for their fondness for Rotary pins – whether they be pins promoting a club, a cause, or a convention.
Dayna Gustke, a member of the Rotary Club of Tempe Downtown, may be our district’s No. 1 collector of Rotary pins!
Dayna, who is club secretary for the Rotary Club of Tempe Downtown, is the proud owner of a Rotary Pin Sash that was inspired by her mother, Lynn Gustke, who passed away last year.
Dayna began her Rotary career on Sept. 12, 2011. Her mother, Lynn, was in Rotary since 1997, and started to collect Rotary Pins throughout the years. She passed on in January 2021 due to COVID, and left over 100 Rotary Pins behind. Dayna purchased a sash on Amazon, and began putting all the pins collected throughout time on this sash. 
Dayna recalls her mother attending a “ton of Rotary events” when she first joined the Rotary Club of Tempe East, and that was when the pin collection first started.
Today, Dayna has a total of 251 Rotary pins – and she intends to continue building her collection.

The Rotary Club of Sun Lakes named Ed Anderson its July 2022 Rotarian of the Month.

It was in 2015, while playing golf at Oakwood Country Club, that Ed was asked to a RCSL breakfast. Ed served as 2018-19 RCSL Club President, and for many years has served on RCSL Golf Committee, various other committees, and community service projects, including managing two Sun Lakes Splash newspaper delivery routes.  Since 2020, Ed has served as Rotary International District 5495 Assistant Governor and advises five of the 65 rotary clubs in the District. Ed is a US Army veteran and Sun Lakes resident.  Ed is now semi-retired with many years in real estate and currently is an award-winning sales agent with West USA Realty. 

In June, RCSL named Jon Lyons, June 2022 Rotarian of the Month.  Jon served two terms (2020-22) as RCSL Club President, currently serves on RCSL Board as Past President and Sergeant of Arms and serves on RI District 5495 committees.  Jon joined RCSL in 2016 and immediately took on responsibilities, including Membership Chair and other roles.  Jon is an ASU graduate with a BS in Accounting, has worked in many disciplines, including Finance, Sourcing, Quality, Lean Manufacturing and Operations. He retired in April of 2016.  The Chandler Chamber of Commerce honored Jon at its 33rd annual Chandler Chamber Community Awards Dinner with the Community Cup Award, for his outstanding contributions to the community.

The RCSL members are excited to honor Ed and Jon as the RCSL’s outstanding Rotarians of the Month.

The Rotary Club of Flagstaff presented Paul Harris Fellow pins to 21 members during its regular weekly meeting on July 21. Club President Tonya Watson is committed to becoming an "All Paul Harris Club."
Also during the meeting, District Governor Bret McKeand presented club member Steve Cervantes with a district MVP Award for his work serving as the district's Sergeant At Arms this past year, as well as helping to organize the district's Bayou Bash at the International Convention in Houston in June.
Rotary clubs in need of empty boxes for service projects such as food or clothing drives have access to hundreds of Rotary-branded boxes gifted to the district from a Rotarian in Iowa.
The district has approximately a dozen bundles of Rotary-branded cardboard boxes. Each bundle contains approximately 100 unfolded boxes (see photos).
The boxes were donated to the district from Teresa Schmidt, a Rotarian living in Iowa. Her daughter, Gina Schmidt is a former member of the Rotary Club of Glendale West (now Valley of the Sun Passport Club), and a volunteer with Peoria North Rotary Club's Prom Closet.
The boxes are available at no charge to any club on a first-come, first-served basis.
The boxes are stored at Family Promise of Greater Phoenix, 7447 E. Earll Drive, Scottsdale, 85251.
Contact Ted Taylor, executive director, to arrange for pickup. Call 480-659-5227.
The Rotary Club of Gilbert officially chartered the district's newest satellite club, the Rotary Club of Queen Creek, during ceremonies held May 6.
The induction ceremony was held at the Guild Mortgage Conference Room in Gilbert, the office of new Rotarian Ron Valario.
There was an excellent attendance and fabulous food prepared by Isabel Amor’s Mexican Restaurant next door. The satellite club now has 20 members! Shirts were distributed by Gilbert Rotary Treasurer George Pettit and new member packets and materials, including membership pins were distributed by Gilbert Rotary membership chair Cori Christenson-Barimo.
Remarks were provided by District 5495 Governor Bret McKeand, Gilbert Rotary President Mike Flores, and Assistant Governor Ed Anderson. All helped with the induction of the new members and presented their Red Badges.
This event has great significance. The establishment of a Satellite Rotary club in the growing Queen Creek area has been a district priority for years, It took a couple of Gilbert Rotarians to approach the Queen Creek Chamber of Commerce about interest in a possible club, a conversation, an appeal, a vision,… and this wonderful, enthusiastic, and committed group was the result.
Congratulations to all! Thanks especially to Mike Flores, Diana Tacey and Satellite Club Transition Chair Jason Jantzen. Welcome to all the newest Rotary members in the world!!
The Rotary Club of Sedona Village held the 3rd annual Grocery Grab shopping spree on Saturday, April 23 at Clark’s Market.
The Rotary Club of Sedona Village members sold tickets to friends, neighbors, and supporters for one month leading up to the shopping spree. The winner was chosen at the annual plant & seed sale held in the community garden on Saturday, April 16. The winner of the shopping spree this year was the Verde Valley Sanctuary.
Shoppers representing the Verde Valley Sanctuary were able to choose items to treat the many children they are serving through their program. With 5 minutes to shop, the shoppers filled one cart with goodies including ice cream, cereal, cookies, and other treats they don’t normally have on hand at the Sanctuary.
The Grocery Grab is an annual fundraiser by the Rotary Club of Sedona Village. Fundraising total was $10,000 this year and with these proceeds, the club will support many local programs and projects in the next Rotary year. Programs and projects include, among others, the community garden on the grounds of Big Park School; youth leadership programs, summer camp scholarships, Adopt a Family program, Verde Valley Imagination Library, and more.
The Rotary Club of Sedona Village is grateful for the 20 plus business sponsors in the Village of Oak Creek for supporting this event. Visit the website for a full list of sponsors.
Visit www.sedonavillagerotary.org to find out more about this event, club activities, or membership.