Thank you to all who contributed to one of The Rotary Foundation's charitable funds during the month of November, also known as Foundation Month in the Rotary world.  While we await the results in our friendly competition for Foundation Month club giving, we do have results from TRF's club awards for Rotary Year 2018-2019.

  • Top Three (3) Highest Per Capita Annual Giving Banner:  For the three clubs in each district that give the most, per capita, to the Annual Fund (requires a minimum of US$50 per capita.)  We are pleased to announce that for District 5610, these clubs will be receiving this banner:

    • 1st - Custer SD Rotary Club $712.58 per capita
    • 2nd - Marshall MN Sunrise Rotary Club $361.54 per capita
    • 3rd - Pierre-Fort Pierre SD Rotary Club $290.38 per capita
  • Every Rotarian, Every Year (EREY) Club:  For clubs that achieved a minimum Annual Fund contribution of US$100 per capita during the Rotary Year, with every dues paying member contributing at least US$25 to the Annual Fund.  Two District 5610 clubs will be receiving this banner:

    • Marshall MN Sunrise Rotary Club
    • Centerville SD Rotary Club
  • 100% Foundation Giving Club:  For clubs that achieve an average of $100 in per capita giving and 100% participation, with every dues-paying member contributing at least $25 to any or all of the following during the Rotary year: Annual Fund, PolioPlus Fund, approved global grants, or Endowment Fund.  Five District 5610 clubs have achieved this recognition and will receive banners:

    • Marshall MN Sunrise Rotary Club
    • Centerville SD Rotary Club
    • Marshall MN Rotary Club
    • Rock Valley IA Rotary Club
    • Winner SD Rotary Club
  • End Polio Now: Countdown to History Campaign Certificate of Appreciation:  For clubs that contributed at least US $1,500 to Rotary's polio eradication efforts.  These eight clubs in our district will receive this certificate:

    • Brookings SD Rotary Club
    • Custer SD Rotary Club
    • Marshall MN Rotary Club
    • Minneota MN Rotary Club
    • Pierre-Fort Pierre SD Rotary Club
    • Rapid City SD Rotary Club
    • Rapid City SD Rushmore Rotary Club
    • Winner SD Rotary Club

Of 35,000 Rotary clubs throughout the world only a few reach these levels of recognition.  Because of the $50 per capita minimum, only 1550 clubs are awarded a 1st, 2nd, or 3rd top rank in Annual Fund giving.  Only 3,400 clubs achieve EREY status, and only 4,000 clubs achieve 100% Foundation Giving Club status.

Congratulations to all of these clubs for achieving this recognition from The Rotary Foundation and thank you for your strong support of Rotary's charitable efforts.  Your Assistant Governor will be presenting these awards to your club at a future meeting.

Ina Winter
District Governor 2019-2020
RID 5610

It was a fine day for a bicycle ride - sunny, mild breezes, temperatures in the upper 60's.  Getting to the ride, not so much.  The drive down to Tucson featured a white-knuckle trek over the I-25 Raton Pass - snow pack, blowing snow, single lane 20mph travel.  Not even the aggressive drivers were passing.  Stopped earlier than planned at Santa Fe, NM and had to chip the ice off my bicycle before bringing it into the hotel room.

The rest of the drive was uneventful and I arrived in time to attend the Rotary pre-race dinner.  Lots of fun with more fund-raising and a chance to meet up with Rotary friends from across the country.  This ride was the 37th El de Tucson charity ride and the 10th year for the Ride to End Polio portion sponsored by Rotary International District 5500.

There were just under 7,000 riders in all the races.  Distances of 100, 50, and 25 miles were offered and a shorter fun ride for kids was also on the agenda.  Traffic control was stellar and the City of Tucson and ride organizers went all out to provide an amazing ride for the participants.  Participants came from all over the United States and I even met a couple of Rotarian riders from Italy and Germany.

After mile 21, which followed a long uphill push of perhaps five miles, I was ready to quit.  Hadn't put in enough training miles for that kind of punishment.  But at the top of the hill, the Marana AZ Rotary Club aid station was an oasis of recovery.  I stayed awhile refreshing my energy with bananas and oranges and resting my legs for the last half of the ride.  The grueling uphill punishment was rewarded with a long downhill ride of about 15 miles to the final stretch which was composed of rolling terrain.

My goal of averaging 10 mph over the 50 miles and finishing in about five hours was busted.  It took two hours longer than anticipated, but I did finish ahead of the the course closing...barely.  The happy news is that my goal of raising $1,000 for PolioPlus was exceeded.  The final tally for my first Ride to End Polio was $1,855 before the 2:1 match from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Next year?  Thinking the 25 mile course is good.  Looking forward to another fun time raising money for a worthy cause.  Perhaps there will be other District 5610 Rotarian riders next year?

Thank you to all who pledged to support my ride.  It really was you who helped me get back on the bike at mile 21.

Ina Winter
District Governor 2019-2020
RID 5610

Together, we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change - across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves.


The start of the 50 mile ride.  This was the event with the most riders.  All kinds of human-powered vehicles were used.  One guy even rode a unicycle in the 100 mile ride!

The start of the 50 mile ride.  This was the event with the most riders.  All kinds of human-powered vehicles were used.  One guy even rode a unicycle in the 100 mile ride!


The Marana AZ Rotary Club Aid Station with some of the Rotarian riders posing in front of District 5500's semi-trailer decked out in End Polio messages.


Judging by the smiles, this was either at the beginning of the race or on the long downhill reward after the Marana aid station.


This is what my bike looked like at the Santa Fe stop.  Despite the thick coating of ice and snow, the bike worked well during the ride.

Rotary Club of Centerville
The Centerville Rotary relocated the area food pantry and took over the management/volunteering of it.  We remodeled a storage room in the back of the Senior Center and are open to the public on Wednesdays from 5:30 - 6:30 p.m.    Centerville Rotarians are the sole volunteers of the facility at this time.    We utilized a District grant of $1,000 and matched it with our own $1,000 to do the remodel.  We also coordinate food drives.
Rotary Club of Clark
A week ago Clark Rotary was invited to share the Thanksgiving meal at the Clark High School. This is an annual event we enjoy and attendance is often near 100%. During that time the Superintendent comes and gives the highs and lows of school activities. As usual, the student accomplishments in local, state and national events are reviewed and applauded. When asked about school needs, the Superintendent shared that school meals for many were becoming an issue of nonpayment. She had set up a fund called the Angel Fund and took personal donations from others for this fund. When a student ran out of money and could not pay for their meal, they were offered the same meal with money being taken from the Angel Fund. Following her presentation, Clark Rotary voted to donate $500 to the school for use in the fund. We would have had no idea of this need if we hadn’t been invited to the school that day. It put the “Thanks” in Thanksgiving for all of us.
It's that time of year again when we think about the District 5610 Four Way Test Essay Contest.  This is a great way to spread our Rotary ideals into our communities.  The contest involves 6th graders and they are asked to write a 200 to 500 word essay on "How can I apply the Rotary 4 Way Test to my life?"  You will be amazed and excited at the perspective 6th graders have on our 4 Way Test.
You need to find a 6th grade teacher or group of teachers who are willing to participate in this great project.  you may find that it is usually easier to approach teachers rather than the administrators as they have so many other issues on their minds.  Provide the teacher with the attached forms describing the contest, it's history and requirements.  When the essays have been written the teachers can narrow down the group and submit their top ten or they can submit all of the essays that they collect to your club.  You need judges to determine the top essays and your club can reward a 1st, 2nd and 3rd prize if you so choose.  Then by the deadline of March 15, 2020 you need to submit your winning essay to the district where it will be judged with all of the other club winners.  The District 5610 winners will be announced at District Conference in April of 2020.  The first place winner will receive a $200 check, a certificate, a Four Way Test coin and the chance to read their essay at the District Conference in Hot Springs.  Second place receives a $100 check, a certificate and a Four Way Test coin while third place receives a $50 check, a certificate and a Four Way Test coin.
We are hoping that many, many of the District 5610 clubs will participate in this terrific project where we teach young people about what Rotary stands for.  For questions or more information contact Pat Sutliff.
The necessary forms are attached.
DISTRICT 5610 GOVERNOR’S FOUNDATION MONTH CHALLENGE – Prizes worth a total of 5,000 in Paul Harris Foundation points to be awarded.
District 5610 Clubs and members are being challenged by Governor Ina Winter again in 2019 to support Rotary Foundation giving during the month of November, which is Rotary’s Foundation Month.  

Winners in member giving category of the Governor’s District Awards (2 awards) will receive 1,000 points for a Paul Harris Fellow gift to be awarded as they choose. All members who give a Paul Harris Fellowship gift in November will be entered in a drawing to select the members to recognize to give the points to recognize as they desire. Clubs in each division that win the per capita category will receive 1,000 Paul Harris Fellow points gift to award as they choose. A total of 5,000 in points will be awarded.  
Governor District Awards for:
The two Individuals with the highest Foundation giving in November will be selected either due to their gift or as selected in a drawing if we have a number of Paul Harris Fellowship gifts at the same amount.

The district club with the highest per capita giving in November Governor Division Awards (3 Divisions):
The club in each division with the highest per capita giving in November receives special governor recognition, and 1,000 Paul Harris Fellow points.
Division I – Canton, Centerville, Clark, Gettysburg, Gregory, Huron, LeMars, Mapleton, Marshall Sunrise, Minneota, Rock Valley, Scotland, Sibley, , Suburban Sioux City, Tyndall, and Wagner. (16)
Division II – Aberdeen, Canby, Cherokee, Custer, Denison, Hot Springs, Madison, Marshall, Mobridge, Sioux Falls North, Sioux Falls South, Spearfish, and Yankton. (13)
Division III -  Brookings, Luverne, Mitchell, Pierre-Ft Pierre, Rapid City, Rapid City Rushmore, Sioux Falls Downtown, Sioux Falls West, Sioux City, Watertown, Winner, and Vermillion. (12)
Contest parameters: Winners will be determined by monitoring all Foundation giving from NOVEMBER 1 to DECEMBER 10. Giving will be extended to December 10th to allow late donations to be registered in the Rotary Foundation records.
Contact Mike Gibson, District Foundation Chair for more information.  
Below are a couple of links for your review about The Rotary Foundation and how to donate to the Foundation. 

All but one of the 40 active clubs in District 5610 have received the official Governor's visit.  I am also excited to visit, in the near future, the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology Rotaract Club.  The club visits exceeded my expectations.  It was truly enjoyable visiting each club and learning what the clubs are doing to serve their communities and contribute to the greater Rotary community.  I am humbled by the extraordinary leadership of the clubs and have a renewed appreciation of Rotary on the ground in District 5610.

During my visits, I took a survey of the members present and offered them an opportunity to identify themselves as veteran Rotarians, novice Rotarians, or somewhere in-between.  They were then asked to grade their club as vibrant, thriving, surviving, or struggling and why.  Rotarians also got the opportunity to leave a message for club leadership and district leadership.  Each club president got the original surveys from their club and a summary of all responses.  The one club with a visit pending was surveyed online, so the survey represents the entire district.  It is not a scientific survey, but the results are valuable nonetheless.

We collected 464 completed surveys which is 27% of our entire district membership of 1750.  That is an extremely good rate of return.  Veterans accounted for 58% of the responses, 14% were from novices, and 28% fell somewhere in-between.  29% of respondents rated their club vibrant, 37% rated it thriving, 32% rated it surviving, and the remainder of less than 2% said their club was struggling.  One conclusion that may be drawn from the data is that club members are generally happy with their club and recognize that there is room for improvement.

As interesting as the numbers are, the best information from the survey came from the written comments.  Overwhelmingly, our members recognize that their club needs to recruit and retain new members...many called out younger members as the most sought after prospect.  The second most called out need was for basic Rotary information.  I have distributed the survey results to District 5610 leadership and we will be working on delivering what the members have cited as needs.  Stay tuned.

Finally, I would like to comment on the exceeding generosity and gratitude members expressed for their volunteer club and district leadership.  I was not expecting that and it was quite encouraging.  Thank you, District 5610 Rotarians for being Rotarians and making the world a better place in the many ways each of you contribute.

Warmly and kindly,

Ina Winter

DG 2019-2020

District 5610 has a rider in the 10th annual Ride to End Polio! Polio eradication was one of the two main reasons Ina joined Rotary, so she felt it was time to do this ride. We are asking for your pledge to support her fundraising goal of $1,000 to PolioPlus.

After many years away from biking, she is getting back in the saddle to Ride to End Polio.  Not wishing to overdo and injure herself, she is training for the 50 mile course.  She is asking friends, family, and Rotarians to pledge $1/mile for this important and vital cause.  Really, any pledge is welcome.  All pledges will be matched 2 to 1 by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

The Rotary Foundation is one of the highest rated charitable organizations in the world - rated 1st by Charity Navigator for 12 straight years!  No safer investment for your charitable contribution.

Ina is also riding to honor her mother, Phyllis Winter, who worked as a Registered Nurse and tended to polio victims using the old iron lungs.  Ina recalls her mom dragging the kids to a public immunization event and how thrilled she was to be able to give the vaccine to them.

We encourage you to support the Ride to End Polio by clicking here to reach District Governor Ina Winter's Pledge Page.

Greetings Rotarians of District 5610. Karl's TV and Appliance stores and Hope Haven International (HHI) are seeking help in the collection of wheelchairs in your areas again in 2019. Karl's TV and Appliance stores are asking you to consider promoting this drive by helping to call nursing homes, hospitals, medical equipment sales dealers, VFW's, etc, in your communities, to see if they can donate their used wheelchairs, walkers, canes and crutches. All Karl's locations will store the mobility devices at their stores as well as ship them back to HHI in Sioux Falls. Please help us to collect these items through Karl's so we can rebuild these wheelchairs and give mobility to those in need around the world. Please contact Mark Siemonsma at 712.470.0298 or if you would like to help or need more information. Thank you again and blessings to all this holiday season!

*Please note, we are not collecting electric wheelchairs or wooden crutches or canes.

Global Grant 1980712, Group Prenatal Care Training for Indigenous Women, officially launched in Fargo on September 17.  Over 100 people attended the kick off celebration on September 17, with representatives of 10 Rotary Clubs in attendance!  It was a wonderful evening with a poster session, dinner/program, and dancing/drumming by the Buffalo River Singers & Dancers.  The diaper drive was very successful as well, with approximately $2000 in diapers/funds collected from attendees and five clubs contributing! 
After the kick off event, health providers from each of the five sites (one each from MT, ND, SD, NE, and MN) stayed on for two more days, to train with the national March of Dimes staff on how to implement group prenatal care in their communities! 
The elimination of polio from the world has had a tough year. Many parents in Pakistan have become vaccine deniers and are newly refusing to have their children vaccinated. This appears to be a response to the government's attempts to get better coverage with threats of jail for non-immunizers and increasing the age of the immunized to 10 years. A public hysterical reaction took place aided by the false information online stating there is a conspiracy by the West to give polio drops that are unsafe and are a part of the effort to hurt and sterilize Muslim children. Over 40 thousand children were reportedly taken to medical facilities with symptoms of nausea and feeling bad after receiving polio drops. Fortunately, no medical condition was present, but immunization has stalled with a subsequent increase in cases of polio paralysis resulting. Now new efforts to combat vaccine denial and more education must be accomplished if we are to move on with the elimination of polio. The Gates Foundation has announced continued matching two dollars for each dollar raised by Rotary. We must as the Energizer Bunny says, "keep going and going and going" and redouble funding efforts.
Willis Sutliff PolioPlus Chair District 5610
District Governor Ina encourages you to join her in giving an additional $35 to PolioPlus this year to help fund The Rotary Foundation's pledge to raise $50 million this Rotary year for polio eradication.  Ina will be making her donation on World Polio Day, October 24, 2019.  District 5610 Rotary Clubs are also encouraged to raise funds on World Polio Day from their celebrations and awareness events.
Thank you, Rotarians - because of your work more than 16 million people have avoided paralysis.  Let's continue until no one has to face polio again.

Does your club have a plan to celebrate World Polio Day on October 24?  What will you do to highlight this important day - a watch party, a proclamation from the city government, a speaker at your weekly meeting?  The graphic below has some ideas on how you and your club can help celebrate World Polio Day 2019! Review those ideas and search for others. Work with the club to determine how they will celebrate the day, and then choose materials from the resource center and other links to help you.


As important as it is to plan your club's event, it is also important to try to promote the event among your club members and the local community. We want everyone to understand that we are so close to eradicating polio from our planet. Please plan something to help celebrate the day and share that with us.


A great deal of material for World Polio Day 2019 is available on the End Polio Now website (  You can go to this link to access all of the items listed below. The links are active in this file, so that you can click on any of the highlighted materials and you should be taken to that material on the website.  The End Polio Now site also has an extensive Resource Center. The resource center provides material in the areas under the categories of:  InfographicsBanners & PostersVideosEducationSocial MediaEvent MaterialsBrand Center


Materials to raise awareness:

1. A fact sheet – Rotary and Polio – that can be the foundation for a media contact

2. A sample press release – that can be customized for your event

3. A template for an official proclamation for world polio day

4. Images for social media to promote the World Polio Day livestream event

5. A page with example posts for Facebook and Twitter- These can be combined with the images for social media.


Materials to plan an event:

1. An event planning guide

2. A template for an event invitation

3. A template for sign on a donation box

Rotary International has designated September, 2019, as Basic Education and Literacy Month.  775 million people over the age of 15 are illiterate. Rotary International has a range of programs to improve global education and literacy rates (  What is your club doing to promote education and literacy initiatives in your community? During September, please post to the District's Facebook page examples of what your club is doing to promote basic education and literacy. 


Rotary clubs around the world are working on literacy. Two examples of those activities in District 5610 are tied to “Read Across America Day” on March 2 of each year. The Sioux Falls South Rotary Club has selected the Cleveland Elementary School and has been actively working to promote literacy initiatives. In addition to celebrating Read Across America Day by having Rotarians read their favorite books in classrooms, they have also donated money to allow all the students to purchase one or more books. CLICK HERE to see a local news report on their program.


The Vermillion Rotary Club has long supported the local schools through scholarships, giving bike helmets to all second graders and donating to school initiatives, such as the Community Service Day, the Robotics Team, the German Exchange student program, and many more. Several years ago, the club decided to help promote the love of reading. School officials were consulted and it was agreed that the focus should be on the Kindergarten students, since first grade students were the focus of another program for Read Across America Day. The club purchased age appropriate books for all Kindergarten students in the community, with extra copies for teachers to use in the classroom. CLICK HERE or on the image below to see a video that was made using some of the photos from the book distribution on Read Across America Day in 2018. 


RI President-elect Mark Daniel Maloney’s theme for 2019-20, Rotary Connects the World, asks Rotarians to strengthen the many ways that Rotary Connects the World, building the connections that allow talented, thoughtful, and generous people to unite and take meaningful action through Rotary service.

Schedule of District 5610 District Governor Club Visits RY 2019-2020

6-27-2019 Thursday 7am                           Hot Springs SD - DG Installation
7-1-2019 Monday noon                              Pierre-Ft. Pierre SD
7-11-2019 Thursday noon                          Denison IA
7-15-2019 Monday noon                            Sibley IA
7-16-2019 Tuesday noon                           Canton SD
7-23-2019 Tuesday 7am                            Rapid City SD Rushmore
7-24-2019 Wednesday noon                     Spearfish SD-Northern Hills
7-25-2019 Thursday noon                         Rapid City SD
7-30-2019 Tuesday noon                           Marshall MN
7-30-2019 Tuesday 5:30pm                      Mapleton IA
7-31-2019 Wednesday noon                     Sioux Falls SD North
8-1-2019 Thursday 7am                             Marshall MN Sunrise
8-1-2019 Thursday noon                           Centerville SD
8-2-2019 Friday noon                                 Sioux Falls SD West
8-5-2019 Monday noon                             Sioux City IA
8-6-2019 Tuesday noon                             Yankton SD
8-7-2019 Wednesday noon                       Gregory SD
8-8-2019 Thursday noon                           Gettysburg SD
8-12-2019 Monday noon                           Madison SD
8-13-2019 Tuesday noon                           Luverne MN
8-14-2019 Wednesday noon                     Minneota MN
8-15-2019 Thursday noon                         Winner SD
8-19-2019 Monday noon                           Cherokee IA
8-20-2019 Tuesday noon                           Suburban Sioux City SD
8-22-2019 Thursday noon                         Canby MN
8-26-2019 Monday noon                           Mobridge SD
8-27-2019 Tuesday noon                           Brookings SD
8-28-2019 Wednesday noon                     Wagner SD
8-29-2019 Thursday noon                         Scotland SD
9-3-2019 Tuesday noon                             Clark SD
9-5-2019 Thursday noon                           Watertown SD
9-9-2019 Monday noon                             Tyndall SD
9-9-2019 Monday 5:15pm                         Sioux Falls SD South
9-10-2019 Tuesday noon                           Le Mars IA
9-11-2019 Wednesday noon                     Vermillion SD
9-16-2019 Monday noon                           Rock Valley IA
9-19-2019 Thursday noon                         Mitchell SD
9-23-2019 Monday noon                           Aberdeen SD
9-30-2019 Monday noon                           Custer SD
Visit Postponed                                          Downtown Sioux Falls SD
Do you have questions about Rotary?   Here is a great booklet on the basics of Rotary from Rotary International that you can now find on the District website in the "News/Download" section. You can also download your copy by simply CLICKING HERE or on the image below.  Use this resource to educate your new members, refresh long time Rotarians or use it to design programs for your meetings. Download your copy today to learn more about the structure of Rotary, the organization's values, Rotary's youth programs, the Rotary Foundation, and more!
As I have visited clubs and met with club leadership, I have learned that membership is of prime concern.  A cursory glance at the comments on the short survey given at each club illustrates that club members share their leadership's concerns.
Rotary International is encouraging clubs to be innovative in addressing membership strategies.  They recognize at least seven different types of clubs: traditional clubs, satellites, e-clubs, passport clubs, corporate clubs, cause-based clubs, and Rotaract clubs.  RI is encouraging clubs to innovate in developing more club formats as well as more membership types.
The declining population in rural America affects those clubs located in small rural communities.  Some towns of 1,000 people or even less, have vibrant Rotary clubs serving their communities.  Other clubs in these small communities are struggling to maintain their vitality.  As the community gets smaller and older, so does the Rotary Club and so does the pool of potential Rotarians.
All is not doom and gloom.  While challenging, there are potential solutions.  Does it seem that there is not possibly room for another Rotary Club in your community?  Consider the possibilities.
Satellites. These are groups of Rotarians who are actually members of your club.  They meet at another time and perhaps place and are pretty independent in their operation with self-government and their own projects and fund-raising.  They do need to be supervised by the sponsoring club and a way of communicating and reporting needs to be established.  This is a good way to extend your club membership to community members who can't meet at the time your club meets or who may be uncomfortable with your club makeup or culture.  It takes a minimum of eight members to be officially recognized as a satellite.  If there are not enough members to form an official satellite, the group could operate as a committee of your club until they achieve enough members to take the next step.  Satellites are expected to eventually become Rotary Clubs in their own rights, but there is no time limit on how long that can take.
Rotaract Clubs.  Most of these clubs are associated with colleges or universities in North America.  They do not need to be.  Community Rotaract Clubs are open to those 18-30 years old who want to operate in the Rotary environment with projects and fundraising and all the other opportunities Rotary offers its members.  Is this a possible way to make your club sustainable for future generations?  As Rotaractors graduate (age out) of their clubs, it is natural for them to become Rotarians.  Who wouldn't want some energized 30 somethings joining their club?
These are just two possibilities.  By analyzing your club's environment, and past efforts to grow membership, and with the ability to innovate new solutions to club membership types and club formats, your club may find a solution to make your club sustainable and serving your community for generations to come.  You are not alone.  RI and District 5610 stand by to help.
For more information, the RI website learning center has lots of documents and information for you to explore. This is the perfect time to celebrate your club’s members and consider the many options available for strengthening your membership. Rotary has a series of membership courses available in the Learning Center — from Attracting New Members to New Member Orientation. Show your Rotary pride by adding a Proud Member frame to your profile picture on Facebook. You can find all these resources and more at Membership Chair Carmen Hansen is a great resource to reach out to for your membership projects.  Carmen can be reached at
Ina Winter
District Governor 2019-2020
RID 5610
The Rotary Year 2019-2020 has started and a good way to start a journey is with an end in mind.  This year, we have three goals - one for each of the major divisions that Rotary International and our District 5610 is concentrating on.
Foundation.  While we will be encouraging members to continue to support The Rotary Foundation with their gifts and to reap the benefits of past years contributions with participation in the District and Global Grant programs, we are specifically targeting the development of a global grant project in our area.  This means that we will be the host partner and will need to solicit an international partner to help us with our project.  We have a grant team of Linda Peterson, Tom Katus, and Colby Christensen of Rapid City Rushmore Rotary Club working on an economic and community development project to benefit the residents of the Pine Ridge community.  We will be partnering with a Nebraska non-profit to equip a maker space for artists in an old White Clay, NE liquor store.  Building something positive out of a tragic past.  Mike Gibson of the Pierre-Ft. Pierre Rotary Club serves as our District Foundation Chair and he and his team are the people to consult for all things Foundation.
Membership.  We will be keeping close tabs on membership throughout the year; however, our emphasis will be on starting two new Rotary groups of any kind.  RI recognizes at least seven types of Rotary clubs:  Traditional, Satellite, E-clubs, Corporate, Passport, Cause-based, and Rotaract clubs.  Additionally, Rotary Community Corps (RCC) clubs and Interact Clubs will count toward this goal.  I believe this is an easily achieved goal as there is tremendous growth potential in communities already hosting a traditional club as well as in communities missing a Rotary presence.  Carmen Hanson of the Rapid City Rushmore Rotary Club leads our efforts in Membership.  She has lots of ideas and is a tremendous resource for clubs in the membership area.
Public Image.  Traditionally, Rotarians have been reluctant to promote our people and our achievements outside of the Rotary world - and perhaps even amongst ourselves to full benefit.  We believe it is important to recognize all the good we are doing as clubs and as individuals and to show off our people and projects to other Rotary groups and to our communities at large.  To that end, District 5610 is standing up a Recognition Committee and program.  We will be promoting all the past recognition efforts and building new ones to highlight all the great things clubs and Rotarians are doing throughout the year.  Recognition is not just for Rotarians...clubs publicly recognizing community individuals and organizations can bring benefit to all concerned.  Tony Burke of the Rotary Club of Downtown Sioux Falls is leading this effort for the district.
Rotary International recognizes that flexibility is key to the continued success of Rotary in the 21st century.  Innovation on the club and district level is encouraged to keep Rotary fresh and appealing to a new generation of Rotarians.  Our International President's theme, 'Rotary Connects the World' applies to connecting generations within Rotary as well as connecting clubs to the greater Rotary world.
Let's DO this!
Ina Winter
District Governor 2019-2020
On June 14, the Vermillion Rotary Club held the Vermillion Rotary Duck Race at the Prentis Plunge Aquatics Center in Prentis Park, Vermillion.  This fundraising event served to not only provide a fun community event, but also to raise funds for the New Community Connections Center. The club plans to use this annual event as a fundraiser for worthy community projects and as a signal to the start of summer in Vermillion.  Ducks were “adopted” for $5 and then 1,000 yellow, rubber ducks raced to determine the top three places. The ducks first took a ride down one of the large slides in the aquatics center, and then they traveled through the lazy river before reaching the finish line. The sponsors of the top three ducks received a cash prize. The ducks were divided into three groups and each group ran an initial heat. The top 20 ducks from each the initial heats advanced to the final heat to determine the winners. To learn more about the event, read the pre-event STORY in the Vermillion Plain-Talk or look at the photo album in the Vermillion Rotary Facebook page.
Below is the logo for the event as well as one of the many photos of the event on the Club's Facebook page. The photo shows a few of the many Vermillion Rotarians who helped to run the event. Here, Kathy Chandler records the 20 winners of each heat in the official spreadsheet, John Prescott, records the heat winners on the board for all to see, and Steve Walters, the event organizer, prepares to call out the heat winners and lead the crowd in the countdown to the start of the next heat.
Rushmore Rotary received front page news for the 30th Annual Golf Tournament hosted by the Rushmore Rotary Club to benefit the Children's Home Society Child Advocacy Center.  Attached is a link to the article by the Rapid City Journal.  
Attached are a few pages from Rushmore Rotary Event brochure showing the sponsors and more on their website story page. Plus see a note about our District Governor Ina Winter's Club Visit and Rushmore Rotary Deck Party.
Rushmore Rotary facebook page has been highlighting these events.
In late January, District Governor Dave Lorenz asked all the clubs to focus on recruiting new members by the end of the Rotary year - June 30.  He set a goal of 66 new Rotarians (56 + 10) by June 30. When that goal was reached by May 20, he posted an additional challenge to recruit 25 more by June 30. That second challenge has been met and passed.  Congratulations, Rotarians of District 5610!  Through your efforts, you have recruited 94 new members since the start of February.  These new members bring new ideas and help clubs throughout the District to continue to improve their communities through Service Above Self. 

Thanks to all the District 5610 Rotarians who have donated to the Rotary Foundation our District has seen its second year in a row of significant increases.  Donations from the District in fiscal years 15, 16 and 17 averaged around $95 per Rotarian. In FY 18, Governor Harrington challenged all the clubs to increase contributions and that number jumped to over $113.  During his club meetings in FY 19, Governor Lorenz asked Rotarians to make Foundation donations a priority and you answered his call.  By the end of the recently completed FY 19, the average donation per Rotarian in District 5610 jumped to over $131.  Thank you for your donations and for helping us to spread the word about the excellent work that results from those donations.

Donations to the Rotary foundation include donations to the Annual Fund, the Polio Plus campaign, as well as any endowments, with the majority of our contributions being targeted toward the Annual Fund. Annual fund contributions are held for three years by the Foundation and the interest is used to fund the Foundation’s operations. After three years the money is allocated by the foundation to support local grants (the money for our District 5610 grants) as well as global grants for projects in which many of our District’s clubs participate. Your donations to the Rotary Foundation are helping to eradicate Polio, and fund numerous projects within our District and around the globe.  Thank you.


Hope Haven is asking for assistance from our district clubs in the collection of new and used wheelchairs. 
Thousands of volunteers, have invested 24 years and bring a lifetime of expertise and skill to repairing and refurbishing used wheelchairs, crafting new chair cushions, and sewing wheelchair accessories. 
Latest wheelchair facts and figures:
1. World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 70,000,000 million people worldwide need wheelchairs and only 15% have them.  That means 59,500,000 people need wheelchairs worldwide.
2. There are 190 countries in the world recognized by the WHO.  Of those 190 countries, 34 are developed countries and 156 are undeveloped.  Eighty-five percent (85%) of the people who need wheelchairs are in the 156 undeveloped countries.
3. As of April 30, 2019, Hope Haven has delivered 127,104 wheelchairs to people in need in 108 countries.
4. It would be of great help for clubs to accumulate wheelchairs, Hope Haven will collect them free of charge from any location in District 5610 or anywhere else.  Please click here to contact Steve Sikorski and he will arrange for pickup.
Help us exceed the 127,104 wheelchairs that have been distributed.  Wheelchairs provide people with disabilities their mobility, inclusion, and care they deserve and need. Hope Haven provides quality wheelchairs that are safety-tested and tailored to meet the needs and size of each individual, giving people the opportunity to live a fulfilling life!  To learn more please visit
DJ Fravel, right, takes a break from his studies to enjoy a quick trip to see Stonehenge. 
DJ Fravel, Rotary Peace Scholar from District 5610, is completing his year-long program in England and will be returning to South Dakota in early September.  Recently we caught up with DJ to find out what his year has been like. In his own words, DJ fills us in on a year filled with life-changing experiences.
How have you interacted with Rotarians where you’re studying?
To date, I’ve been a guest speaker at five Rotary Clubs and one Rotaract Club. I’ll spend the evening chatting with the Rotarians over dinner, and then speak a bit about myself and what brought me to study in London. Topics usually include the Global Grant Scholarship and its process, life in South Dakota, talking about my studies, future plans, and answering questions. I’ve heard South Dakota Mornings by the Bee Gees and Doris Day’s The Black Hills of Dakota quite a few times at these dinners!
I also attended multiple get-togethers, Rotary Walks, and other similar events with the cohort or Global Grant scholars studying in London. The central event was the District Conference in Bournemouth from October 19-21. Come the last week of August, I will be giving my goodbye speech for my host club of Enfield Chase here in London District 1130.
Additionally, I understand that you’ve joined Rotaract. I would love to hear more about your experiences there?
I joined Rotaract near the very end of 2018 after attending several meetings and volunteering with the Operation: Christmas Child shoebox packing. Rotaract Westminster is a large and active club, with quite a few opportunities for service opportunities. One option, for example, is their weekly soup kitchen every Thursday with St Patrick’s Church in Soho. Their semi-weekly meetings are extremely well attended, with guest Rotaractors from around the world routinely stopping in to have a chat about their own clubs and experiences.
What have you been doing in your studies, and how do you anticipate that this experience is going to influence your future career choices, community involvement, etc.?
At this exact moment, my future career plans involve working for two to four years to earn some money towards attending law school and attaining my J.D. After this point, I plan on becoming an immigration lawyer working with the asylum seeker cases, or as a legal consultant with a refugee advocacy group, PAC, or NGO.
I went for my Master’s to help build up more knowledge, frameworks, and understanding in the context of migration. I’ve learned how so much of what we see in these realms created fully from how we speak of the facts at hand. It is easy to frame migration as something that happens far away, especially from places such as South Dakota. But in so doing, we remove large swaths of the human element in migration. It becomes something that happens ‘out there’, away from us.
During my program, I took such courses as Migration in Conflict and Ethics in International Relations. Both taught numerous ways that we can look at the world in an effort to find the best policies and programs. Even deeper, however, these courses looked at the ways in which we all use language towards some specific desired worldview.
In talking about migration solely as ‘legal’ or ‘illegal’, we can quickly downplay the instigating factors for why people choose to flee from where they live in order to seek asylum somewhere else. In the midst of all of this, however, some system is necessary to protect the lost and least as they look for a new home. Our legal system is not perfect, neither are the ways we currently address migration. It is my hope that, with my Master’s and future J.D., I’ll be able to enter in to this discussion as a knowledgeable, compassionate, and human-focused individual. The Rotary motto “service above self” rings out clearly here.
For the time being, however, I await my final exam marks and am in the process of writing my dissertation. I don’t have an official title quite yet, but I am writing on the contemporary tensions between ‘migrants’ as a concept and group of people as juxtaposed with ‘citizenship’ and belonging in the United States. Looking at the current system of detention and family separation, something that has been going on in the US far longer than some might think, we see how quickly defining asylum seekers with the catch all term ‘immigrant’ can lead to inhumane and dangerous policies. My dissertation seeks to investigate where these notions came from, and what steps we can take to help humanize this process.
What opportunities have you had (travel, cultural events, etc.) while in the program?
Most recently, I took a road trip out to Bath with another Rotary Scholar, Katie Fettes from District 7010 in Canada. We saw Stonehenge, visited Bath Abbey, and saw the historic Roman bath houses.  I went to visit a friend working in Hong Kong for Spring Break and spent a good week there doing some food tourism with her. The history of Hong Kong and its modern political climate blended together as we visited museums in between food stops, making for an eye opening few days.
In London, I’ve taken advantage of the large number of theaters (and student ticket prices) and have seen classic plays like Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap, The Woman in Black, and Fiddler on the Roof. My mother’s first Master’s Degree is in Theatre History, so her request to me was that I see as many plays as possible so she can live vicariously through me. I hope I’ve seen enough for you, mom!
The British Museum is a great place to go spend a few hours with a cup of tea and enough history to keep you occupied for far more time than I have. My first visit there took up about seven hours, and I’m positive I have yet to see everything they have to offer. My routine stop is always the Greek and Assyrian sculpture wing. The power and artistry behind they work is always a source of fascination.
During what little downtime I have as I write my dissertation this summer, I’m planning on spending some time at several of the many larger parks London has to offer. The Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew are fast becoming a main feature of my free days! London weather is fairly routine, but oftentimes uncooperative. Rain is intermittent, but extremely common, making days out require always carrying an umbrella.
I have taken up two hobbies during my stay here. Along with some friends, I am taking Scottish line dancing classes about once every other week. Three times a month, I also attend longswords classes.
What have you found most surprising during the time in the program?
While I appreciate the option to take public transportation nearly everywhere, London is an extremely walkable city. I live near London Bridge Station, which is right across the Thames from Central London. A 30-minute walk can get me nearly anywhere!  Out of all the transportation options available, The Overground rail line is by far my favorite. That said, nothing can quite beat the charm of the old Swanage steam line.
Rotarians, Dr. Reuben Bareis of Rapid City and Dick Brown of Custer, are two of the 10 individuals in the 2019 class to be inducted into the South Dakota Hall of Fame.  The South Dakota Hall of Fame is celebrating its 45th year and recognizes individuals who impact the state through the mission to Champion a Culture of Excellence. The inductee accomplishments reach beyond South Dakota in representing and building the future for the state. 
Brown has been a member of the Custer Rotary Club since moving there twelve years ago. Prior to his move to Custer, he was a member of a Sioux Falls Rotary club and served as the President.  Bareis is a lifetime supporter of Rotary, including service as the Rapid City Club president, hosting youth exchange, hosting for friendship exchange, and serving as a leader in club projects.
The Honors Ceremony will be held in Chamberlain/Oacoma, SD on September 13 and 14, 2019, and is open to the public. A table for 10 has been reserved for Rotarians that want to be there to celebrate the induction of these two to the Hall of Fame. Contact Linda Peterson or Carol Johnson to reserve a spot at the table. The biographies of the two provided below, and further information on the SD Hall of Fame, are located at
Two of This Year’s Honorees and Rotarians of District 5610 are:
Rapid City, SD | Medical
Changing the Course for Elderly Caregiving
When Dr. Bareis relocated to Rapid City in 1957, only a single care facility for the elderly existed. Reuben is one of the original board members and helped break ground at Westhills Village Retirement Community. Six more facilities eventually followed, and Dr. Bareis served as medical director of three of them. His work continues to influence South Dakota in this critical care need. Dr. Bareis retired in 1999 after almost 50 years of practicing internal medicine and geriatrics with many accomplishments as a kind and compassionate community leader.
Custer, SD | Philanthropic
Public Service Leader & Conservationist
A native of Dell Rapids and USD Political Science alumnus, Dick Brown left for Washington, D.C. in 1967 for doctoral studies and to work for U.S. Senator Karl Mundt. He then went on to lead the ten-state Missouri River Basin Commission in Omaha. In 1979, he returned to his beloved South Dakota where his impact has been felt statewide with involvement in the state legislature, charitable organizations, and outdoor recreation.
Dr. Willis Sutliff, the Energizer bunny of the Polio Plus campaign in District 5610, receives a club banner from Rand Wergin, Vermillion Rotary Club President, after Dr. Sutliff's update to the Vermillion Club on Rotary's efforts to rid the world of Polio.  To watch Dr. Sutliff's presentation to the club you can CLICK HERE or on the picture below to go to the Club's YouTube page. 
Below is a video clip interview with Reuben Bareis.  District 5610 is proud to announce Reuben Bareis is one of the ten honorees for the SD Hall of Fame.  This marks the 45th year of the South Dakota Hall of Fame, and since 1974, more than 700 South Dakotans have become members of the state's Hall of Fame.  The annual honors ceremony will be held September 13-14 and is open to the public. Tickets will go on sale June 1 and can be purchased on the Hall of Fame's website at or by calling 605-234-4216.  To learn more, click on the website link for a Rapid City Journal news article.
December 2019