It’s been a privilege to serve as your district governor the past 11+ months. Optimists are a special breed of people, so please take pride in what you accomplish on behalf of youth, your communities and yourself.
This has been a wonderful Optimist year. Before going, however, let’s talk about the final weeks. A dozen or so clubs are in reach of being recognized as Honor Clubs and the district is close to emergin as a Distinguished District. More than simply awards, these are valuable goals. An Honor Club is a successful club. A Distinguished District is a district that is growing.
To finish as an Honor Club, a club must finish a net plus-three in membership and completed required reports. Building a new club – as Monaco South and Heather Gardens did this year – elevates a club to Distinguished.
So, on to accomplishments:
- Our three quarterly conferences were fun-filled, informative and hands-on via a worthwhile project at each. Thanks to those who participated; a club that is represented at a district conference is indicative of a healthy club. The annual convention in Breckenridge Aug. 17-20 was warm, interactive and a great learning opportunity. We commend clubs that were represented and prod those who weren’t to make plans to be at conferences in the new Optimist year. All Optimists ought to attend at least one conference, for person growth at the least.
- Chartering of a new Englewood Optimist Club built around Junior Golf brought close to 20 new members into the fold and portended terrific opportunities for kids in the Englewood area. Thanks to Past Gov. Phil Perington, district Sec-Treasurer Craig Baldwin, Lt. Gov. Michael Chavez and charter President Randy Penn among others for this achievement.
- A new Junior Optimist District under the leadership of past gov. Donna Priester was created. The JOI District enjoyed its first annual convention in May – a fascinating and terrific event – and its leaders attended the JOI Annual Convention in Albuquerque and were installed for the coming year at our district convention in Breckenridge.
- Two new clubs are close to formation, one in Arvada through the perseverance of Lt. Gov. Terri Kearney and her husband Ken and the other through past Gov. Sherman Philops and incoming Lt. Gov. Jean Shelton.
- A campaign to identify and empower developing Optimist leader was a rousing success. Our district is poised for ever-greater success in the years to come under the leadership of Gov-Designate John Swanborg, Gov-Elect Linda McDonald and a host of other giving, committed Optimist leaders.
- We created a district Facebook page where clubs and the district can share photos, stories and events. Please visit facebook.com/cowyoptimist, like the page and post your club news.
I can’t say enough about our district leadership team that works so diligently and collaboratively this year. Hey, after all our district motto is “Teamwork.” Special kudos to Charlie and Gunar Neumann, my chiefs of staff without whom I wouldn’t have last three months!
Yours in Optimism,
Governor, CO/WY Optimist District