Welcome to the Colorado/Wyoming Optimist District!
Optimist International is a worldwide volunteer organization made up of over 2100 local Clubs whose Members work each day to make the future brighter by bringing out the best in children, their communities and themselves.
The Colorado-Wyoming Optimist District represents 40 Optimist Clubs in Colorado and Wyoming. These clubs work together as a district and independently to serve kids in their local area. The CO-WY District is involved in all of the Optimist International scholarship and charitable programs plus a whole lot more.
Our district also supports 21 Junior Optimist International (JOI) Clubs in elementary, middle and high schools whose members are working hard to bring out the best in their schools, communities and themselves.
We also have our very own Steve “Yoda” Gorrell as a candidate running for the Optimist International Foundation,
our 501(c)3, Board position.
Here is a little bit about him:
STEVE “Yoda” GORRELL BIO
• Joined First Optimist Club 1976
• Outstanding and Distinguished Governor of the Kansas District 83-84
• Member Optimist International Membership Committee 84-85
• Optimist International Vice President and Board Member 87-89
• 1st group of 2-year Optimist International Vice President and Board member
• Member of International Constitution and Bylaws Committee 90-94
• Appointed to be member of Optimist International Foundation Board of Directors 95-2000
• Distinguished DFR in both the Kansas District and Colorado-Wyoming District
• CFR for several years for the Westminster-Broomfield Optimist Club
• Been member of the President’s Club ever since it was first introduced
• Very active in the local Optimist Clubs that he has been a member of.
• Very Active in both the District level of both the Kansas and Colorado-Wyoming Districts
• Has over 20 years as a business owner and his final 10 years of working as a Banker
“With my business experience and Optimist experience, I feel that I could be an asset to the Foundation. I would appreciate your vote.”
~ Steve “Yoda” Gorrell
Our Signature Projects
OI Scholarship Contests
Optimist International sponsors four scholarship contests for students to earn money to pursue opportunities in higher education: These contests are conducted at the Club level, Zone level, District level and International level with recognition and prizes at each level.
~ Essay Contest
~ Oratorical Contest
~ Communication Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
~ Junior Golf
Please click here for more information:
Childhood Health and Wellness
Optimist International Foundation raises money and provides grants for Club and District initiated projects that improve the quality of life of children. These projects span a broad spectrum of needs including healthy lifestyle, chronic diseases, mental health and physical, intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Optimist Brain Bowl
The Optimist Brain Bowl is a team quiz competition for 6th, 7th and 8th grade students and is our district’s largest Optimist sponsored program with more than 500 students participating. For more information visit www.optimistbrainbowl.org.
Club Generated Activities
2023-24 District Governor
My theme for this year is “Connect with Optimism.” In order to connect, we need to Communicate, Care and Celebrate.
Let’s all communicate to connect. I encourage clubs to increase their communication with members and between clubs and District Committee Chairs. To keep members engaged, use emails, social media and especially phone calls. Share newsletters, project and fundraising events with others in the District. All District Committee Chairs communicate with clubs to encourage member engagement and retention; help with clubs who have issues to improve their viability; assist with marketing, and coordinate the scholarship competition.
We need to first care about ourselves so that we can project the big “O” of optimism. We care about our youth by identifying their needs and creating relationships with schools and other nonprofits. Projects include reading to and mentoring kids, filling backpacks, Super Citizen awards, filling bedding bags for displaced youth, organizing fishing trips for troubled youth and many more projects. In schools, Junior Optimist Clubs facilitate youth to be leaders, team players and follow the Creed. We also care about the community with projects such as placing wreaths on veterans’ graves, supplying food banks and organizing a marathon.
Optimists celebrate their accomplishments and socialize to create a strong bond among members who live our Creed. We celebrate our new clubs and members. We celebrate our Optimism.
I am excited and passionate about being the CO/WY District Governor for 2023-24!
By providing hope and positive vision, Optimists bring out the best in youth, our communities, and ourselves.
The Optimist Creed
To be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness and prosperity to every person you meet.
To make all your friends feel that there is something in them.
To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.
To think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.
To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature you meet a smile.
To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.