January 2015 - Issue 7
Upcoming Events
District Conference Committee meeting
Westbrook campus, Husson University
Jan 07, 2015
5:30 PM – 7:00 PM
Mid Year Leadership Dinner 2015
Fireside Inn (I-95 Exit 48, (207) 774-5601)
Jan 26, 2015
5:30 PM – 8:30 PM
District Conference Committee meeting
Jan 28, 2015
5:30 PM – 7:00 PM
World Understanding and Peace Dinner
Portland Marriott at Sable Oaks
Feb 23, 2015
5:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Rotary Leadership Institute
York Community College
Feb 28, 2015
7:30 AM – 3:30 PM
Northeast PETS training
Framingham Sheraton
Mar 12, 2015 – Mar 14, 2015
District Assembly
York Community College
Mar 28, 2015
8:00 AM – 2:00 PM
District Conference 2015
Wentworth by the Sea
Apr 24, 2015 – Apr 26, 2015
Russell Hampton
Be Flexible and Then Reflect
One of the things that I’ve learned in life - and it has been very much reinforced by my experience in Rotary - is the importance of being flexible and ready to embrace change. When I began my DG tenure in July, I decided to write my monthly article for the District Newsletter based on the Rotary Theme for the month, and that is what I did for the first six months. Imagine my surprise when I received an email announcement in December that the RI Board of Directors had changed the theme month designations to better reflect the Rotary Areas of Focus. And guess what the January theme is? Vocational Service, which is what I wrote about in October! Well don’t worry, I’m not going to write about that topic again. Instead I think I’ll reflect on the fact that we are halfway through the Rotary year already. Several club presidents I spoke with recently talk about how fast the year was going by; that’s what I found the year I was club president and I’m finding it again in terms of my DG experience. There are so many things we want to tackle and not enough time to do them all. I am particularly proud of the BridgeWalk to End Polio; the District Newsletter and the response to my video blogs; getting the Youth Exchange program back on track; the Membership/ Foundation Seminar we had in the Fall; the response to the Cultural Exchange with Bulgaria; the hard work being put in by various district committees including International Services, Public Image, District Protection, Membership, and Youth Services; and the fact that our membership is up by about 40 members district-wide. I am constantly impressed with how many great Rotarians there are in District 7780 and how much excellent work they do. Be proud of yourselves and all you accomplish. But then roll up your sleeves and get busy. There is much more we can do. Happy New Year.
District History Trivia
This month’s District History question is an easy one!
How many of our Past District Governors are “living in District 7780”?
If you can find the answer in the District Website’s History Yearbook pages, send it to me at along with your name and the name of your Rotary Club.  The answer will be in next month’s newsletter along with the name of the person(s) to give me the correct answer along with their club name.
Happy New Year Everyone!
Marie A. Williams
District Historian
Click "Read More" for the answer to last month's trivia question.
2015 World Understanding and Peace Dinner
Be sure to mark Monday, February 23, 2015 on your calendar. It is not only the birthday of Rotary but also the date of this year’s World Understanding and Peace Dinner. You will have the opportunity to hear one of Rotary’s all-time best speakers, Past Rotary International President Richard King. As you might expect, he has an impressive Rotary resume and an equally impressive personal and professional one as well. Barbara and I were privileged to hear him speak in San Diego last January at the RI International Assembly and he was spellbinding. I knew right then that I needed to try to get him to our district to speak, and I later found out he had been here before and loves our District. He served as RI President in 2001-2002. Soon we will be posting additional information about him and a few other surprises we have planned for the evening on the website and through an email to all district Rotarians. This is an opportunity not to be missed.
                                                                                                                                           Rick King
                                                                                                                   Past Rotary International President
                                                                                                                                                                       2001 - 2002 
Rotary Leadership Institute
Rotary Leadership Institute (RLI) is a marvelous opportunity to learn more about Rotary. Through a series of Saturday all day workshops, Rotarians (both newbies and more experienced members) enjoy interactive sessions led by seasoned Rotary facilitators.

Whether your goal is club leadership or just to know more about how Rotarians do the great humanitarian work we do, RLI is a great way to learn more and make new friends at the same time. 
Register now for the Feb 28 session to be held at York County Community College by going to the RLI website: or contact Marge Barker @ for more information.
Young Professionals Summit
Held in Chicago in September, the Young Professionals Summit gave Rotary leaders ages 25 to 40 the chance to share their Rotary experiences, reflect on their stories, and exchange ideas.  Participation in the  summit was by invitation - and  included Portland Sunrise Rotarian Sam Heck.  
This video shows some of the work of that weekend and the ideas that came from it.  How might your club benefit from the ideas presented here?
Young Professionals Summit video
             Sam Heck
Your Foundation $$ Put to Good Use!
Below is a link to an article (How a Simple School Project in India became a Global Grant) that RI published earlier this month regarding the literacy project that Kennebunk Portside is involved in  - most notably President Cornelia Stockman. The grant was a while in coming, and  took a lot of twists and turns until the final project was identified and approved by TRF.    
Both Cornelia and Peter (as DRFC) are quoted, and features a super photo by Cornelia!
The Damariscotta-Newcastle Club has inducted three new members in the past month.
Rick Hagen is a retired Area and Special Project Manager for AT&T/Bell South.  He and his wife Lisa moved here from Miami, Florida and live in Damariscotta.
Jody Jones is the Executive Director of the Damariscotta Lake Watershed Association, a non-profit environmental organization. 
Fred Brewer is a native of Maine, an accountant and lives with his wife and children in his childhood home; he is active in the Damariscotta Fire Department, Twin Village Alliance, and Pumpkinfest.
New members to the Portsmouth Rotary Club since July, in chronological order:
Peter George, Susan Gold, Tristan Shanley, David Andreeson, Dan Marsten, Miranda Butson, Albie Sampson and Sara Smith.
Boothbay Harbor Rotary Club
The Boothbay Harbor Rotary Club celebrated its 75th anniversary in December with a gala dinner, keynote by Rotary Foundation Vice Chair Mike McGovern, and presentation of five Paul Harris Fellows to community members. Governor Lawrence was on hand to present greetings from RI president Gary Huang, and club president Dwight Swisher read a letter of congratulations from Maine Governor Paul LePage.  The evening was particularly sweet because it marked the debut of the club's spiffy new Clubhouse, the only Rotary Club-owned meeting space in New England.
Pictured:  Rotary Foundation Vice Chair Mike McGovern addresses the crowd.
Bridgton-Lake Region Rotary Club
The Bridgton Annual Festival of Lights Parade highlighted the Rotary Club of Bridgton-Lake Region’s float, "Duck The Halls" to remind everyone of our signature Duck Race held every July 4th! This year we won first place for “most creative” float.  Our club also purchased lights for a big tree in town to tie into our theme "Light Up Rotary".
President President Emma Bodwell and DGE Sheila Rollins from the Rotary Club of Bridgton-Lakes Region receive the Community Non-Profit of the Year Award from the Greater Bridgton Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce.
Members of the Rotary Club of Bridgton-Lake Region cooked and served a delicious Italian dinner at the local Community Center as part of the Community Kettle Program.  These dinners are attended by about 80 local residents.
Brunswick Rotary Club
The Rotary Club of Brunswick plays Santa to 44 children, ranging in ages from 5 - 17, who have been identified by the Tedford Family Shelter. This project has taken place every December for the last five years. Rotarians purchase age appropriate gifts or gift-cards and insure that every child receives hats and mittens, as well as toys, books and games. 
Pictured L - R Rotarians Sandy Morrell-Rooney, Allison Chapman and Patty Biggs
Brunswick Rotarians surprise Ethan Minton, program director for the Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program, with an additional check, bringing the club’s donation to $4000 for this program which helps food insecure families. The “Pack a Backpack” fundraiser was more successful than the club expected, allowing the Rotarians to add to their pledge.
Pictured, L - R  Program Director Ethan Minton, Rotarian and MCHPP Volunteer Coordinator Laurel Koepke, President Gary Torow, Rotarian Dennis St. Pierre, Rotarian Patty Biggs, Treasurer Jim Pierce, Secretary Stan Primmer and President elect Val Campbell 
Coastal Rotary Club
On December 10th, Coastal Rotarians provided a dinnertime Christmas carol serenade to residents at Horizons Living, Brunswick. Good friend of Coastal Rotary, Joel Leak, provided guitar accompaniment and helped keep us in tune.
Oxford Hills Rotary Club
Members of the Rotary Club of Oxford Hills shopped and delivered food to four local food pantries recently.  Monies were raised from their ‘Road Toll’. Special thanks to Beth Abbott for coordinating efforts with the food pantries and Hannaford of Oxford. 
Shown from left to right: Chris & Val Weston, Debbie Harris, Bob Schott, George Rice, Chris Summers, Christina Twitchell, John Griffith, Curtis Cole, and Ron Morse.  Missing from photo, Beth Abbott and photo taken by Patty Rice.
Portsmouth Rotary Club
On December 4th, the Rotary meeting was jam packed for our annual Senior Luncheon.
Rotarians Cindy Shanley and Cindy Boyd started off with “Deck the Halls” to get the festivities started.  
The Portsmouth Holiday Ensemble was visiting again this year led by Steve Cirilo.  The band played beautiful songs for our luncheon.
Following the band, the Seacoast Community School brought the children to sing for us some of the season’s favorites.  All the kids were so adorable singing for the crowd.
The caroling began with “Jingle Bells” and ended with “We wish you a Merry Christmas.”  
A special thank-you to the Portsmouth Country Club for the amazing turkey dinner and dessert they served us.  As always they did a great job!  We also want to thank the Salvation Army for the wonderful gifts we gave out to our seniors.
Strawbery Banke Museum’s new Puddledock Pond Skating Rink opened Friday, December 12th, Portsmouth Rotary Club donated over 250 person-hours to the construction project, and the club has contributed a total of $30,000 toward the cost of this wonderful new resource.
Join us every Saturday afternoon for the Portsmouth Rotary Club FREE Public Skate, at 3:15 PM.  Congratulations to Strawbery Banke Museum on the launch of this community facility.  
Members of the Portsmouth Rotary Club, along with some of the volunteers, stand in front of nearly 1600+ trees, wreaths & ornaments in preparation for their 42nd Annual Tree Sale.  Last year, this fundraiser netted $38,000 for charities.
Click below for a piece NECN did about the wrap up of Portsmouth Rotary's Tree Sales and Giveaway.
River Valley Rotary Club
The River Valley Rotary Club presented several awards at their Holiday Dinner Social held this year at the Front Porch in Dixfield on Wednesday the 17th!
Seen in the photo, Jerry Cohen, retired Dentist received the prestigious Rotary's Citizen of the Year Award plus was issued his 4th Paul Harris Award for his generous monetary contribution to that program!  Presenting him with the Award is Catherine Johnson, Current River Valley Rotary Club President and Director of HOPE Association.
Other Awards issued to those that were missing from the evening's festivities:  were the "Rotarian of the Year" which was awarded to Charlie LeDuc, Fellow Rotarian and employee of the Fitch Company, for his many years of service as the secretary of the Club, and McKenzie Paterson was the recipient of a Paul Harris Award for her continued contribution to the Society and volunteer work in Nigeria!
Congratulations to all!
Sanford-Springvale Rotary Club
A yearly treat for the Sanford-Springvale Rotary Club is a visit and concert from the Sanford High School chorus.  The lovely voices bring to us the wonderful Christmas Carols and enhances our holiday joy.  It is a happy day for our gathering.
Sanford-Springvale Rotary Club President, Heather Matlosz (on the left), presents a club donation to the Literacy Volunteers of Greater Sanford.  Accepting the check is Ingrid Baily, LVGS Executive Director, and LVGS Board President, Geoff Titherington.  The Sanford-Springvale Rotary Club is a proud supporter of the Literacy program.
Sebago Lake Rotary Club
For 50 seniors who will be alone this holiday season, the Sebago Lake Rotary Club collected items for several weeks from the community.  Along with generous donations from Ron Eby and Walgreens they were able to fill the baskets at their recent meeting.
The baskets were distributed on Monday, Dec 15th.
Kennebunk, Brunswick Coastal and Fryeburg Rotary Clubs
Mark your calendars for Saturday, January 31st at 6:00 pm for a night filled with music provided by members of the Uganda Cultural music exchange, tasty treats, drinks and a silent auction, to raise money for youth projects in Uganda, Africa and in York County, Maine
The Kennebunk, Brunswick Coastal and Fryeburg clubs have collaborated on this event, and it promises to be a time for Rotary fellowship in a beautiful setting located at the Kennebunk Conservation Trust Headquarters, 57 Gravelly Brook Road.
Tickets for the event are only $10.00, and all proceeds will go towards helping youth in Uganda as well as a program to help mentor troubled teens with the Restorative Justice Program of York County.
Anyone wishing to donate an item to the auction will receive a complimentary ticket.
For inquiries or to purchase tickets contact Brett Davis at, or tickets may be purchased from any Kennebunk Rotarian, or at Smithwick Mariners Insurance on Main Street in Kittery.
Raffle tickets will be available at the event to take a chance to win a quilt made by Mary Bastoni.  Tickets can also be purchased in January by contacting Mary at Raffle ticket prices are $5.00 each or 3 for $10.00.
Click "Read More" to see a picture of the quilt in the making.
Portland Rotary Club
Every Rotarian is invited to join Rotarians for Hearing Rotarian Action Group.
Simply go to and click on Join/Donate for three years for $25 and to sponsor a Child to Receive the Gift of Hearing by donating $75 for child with a severe hearing loss to receive a quality, digital hearing aid through the International Humanitarian Hearing Aid Purchasing Program.
Rotarians for Hearing Rotarian Action Group will then match the donation with a second hearing aid. Your $100 investment will allow a child to learn to listen and speak, communicate with family and friends, hear the joys of music and the sounds of laughter and attend a regular school and develop this child's potential.
The hearing aids will be fitted by Drs. Roger and Liz Fagan as they participate in Portland Rotary's Hearing-Hands & H2O program (3-H) in the Dominican Republic.


Have Something You'd Like to Share with Us?
Updates and short articles with images or videos, and the names of new members and those who have passed, may be submitted to our Newsletter Editor, Deb Marsolais, at, to  be included in our Monthly Newsletter. The District Newsletter is a means of communicating  to other clubs  in our district; items of interest, upcoming events, fundraisers or opportunities of service.
Deadline for February 2015 Newsletter Submissions:  January 26th
As a precaution, unless you have obtained a written consent from a parent/guardian, every child’s face which appears in a picture submitted for the newsletter or website, will be edited so that it is blurred out in the picture.  Since there may be situations involving abuse, neglect, custody dispute, etc., and parents wouldn't want their child's picture to appear in public, this is being done for the child's privacy and protection.
If you have a submission for the newsletter or website, and would like to have us post a picture with a child (children) in it, please let us know if you have received a consent, otherwise we will edit it accordingly.
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