March is the sixth month of the Optimist year. Wow, it's hard to believe we're halfway through a dream come true for me. We are in pretty good shape, keeping in mind, we just suffered through one of the harshest winters we've seen in years. Even our Members in the south have shared with me just how uncomfortable the weather has made it for them this year.
March is also the month when we should start to come out of hibernation. The sun will shine and the temperature will rise. Now is the time to socialize with those potential Members you thought about all winter long. They deserve to experience what we do. Give them the opportunity to put a smile on a child's face. Let them develop their own "MO."
Think about the children in communities that don't have an Optimist Club yet. Reach out and share with them. An Optimist should think "New Club Building" and realize all the opportunities we have to spread Optimism. Spring is a great time for renewal and resurgence. With a little shoulder to the wheel, we can reverse the current decline and show that Optimism rules the world.
Ron Huxley, 2013-14 International President
I want to make sure you know how enriching the Leadership Summits have become. We are seeing Optimists who have never experienced this caliber of training before. Yes, many attendees are long-standing Members, but many are just beginning their voyage through the wonderful world of Optimism. All reports indicate that these new Members are impressed with the Summit approach. There are still a number of Summits on the Optimist calendar, so make sure to check out the website and plan to attend one near you. I will be at each Summit and look forward to meeting you.
If the bitter cold of this year's winter still lingers in your bones, make plans to join us at the Optimist International Convention in Las Vegas this July. If that hot, desert temperature doesn't warm you up, you should check yourself for a pulse. Let's meet in Vegas and continue to have fun Optimist-style.
Yours in Optimism,
Leadership Summits Have Something for Every Optimist
Where can you find leadership training, fellowship and fun, all in one place? The answer is simple - an Optimist Leadership Summit! Would you like to know the best thing about the Optimist Summits? The events are being held across the US, Canada and the Caribbean in order to provide quality training, while remaining both geographically and financially accessible to a vast majority of Optimist Members. The registration fee for each of the summits is only $25! All Optimists are encouraged to attend, including new Members, long-standing Optimists, Club and District officers and those who would like to be an officer in the future.
The six Leadership Summits that have already been conducted were a great success. Don't worry; there's still time to register to attend one of the remaining 11 Summits. In March, you can make plans to attend the Kingston, Jamaica event on March 22 or the Kansas City, Missouri event on March 29. In April, Summits will be held in Dayton, Baltimore and Sioux City, Iowa.
If you would like more information or are ready to get registered, click here.
International Candidate Qualifications (CQ) Committee Announces Slate of Officers
The International CQ Committee met and selected its nominees for International officers to be selected in the organization's first online election in June.
The CQ Committee nominees are:
David Bruns (Topeka, Kansas)
Region 1 Northeast & Great Lakes: Ann Donkers (Williamstown, Ontario)
Region 2 Southeast: James Adams (Montgomery, Alabama)
Region 3 Mid-Atlantic: Barbara Timmons (Rolesville, North Carolina)
Region 4 Middle America: Robert Floyd (El Dorado Springs, Missouri)
Region 5 Great Plains: Mark Claussen (Norfolk, Nebraska)
Region 6 Southwest: Albert Clark (Fort Worth, Texas)
Region 7 West Coast: Charlie Pease (Lyons, Colorado)
Region 8 St. Lawrence: Luc Dubois (Sherbrooke, Quebec)
Board of Directors Members (two to be elected):
Judy Boyd (Urbandale, Iowa)
Don Brose (Clarkston, Michigan)
Sue Creswell (Reading, Pennsylvania)
Adrian Elcock (St. Thomas, Barbados)
Esthermarie Hillman (Tucson, Arizona)
Other Members may self-nominate for these positions by the April 1 deadline, as outlined in the International Bylaws.
Name Change to US Insurance Administrator Please be advised that, effective January 1, 2014, our third-party insurance administrator changed its name from Marsh U.S. Consumer, a service of Seabury & Smith Inc., to Mercer Consumer, a service of Mercer Health & Benefits Administration LLC.
Mercer is a global leader in talent, health, retirement and investments. Mercer and Marsh are both subsidiaries of Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. (MMC).
This is an internal realignment within MMC only, allowing Mercer Consumer the ability to provide their membership with the best possible products and services. While you will notice the name change on their website, in bills, and in other communications, Optimists can expect a seamless transition, with no effect to current insurance coverage or the services provided.
Help Us Learn about the Volunteer Interests of Others
The Optimist International Leadership Development and Growth Department wants to learn about the volunteer interests of non-Optimists. A short eight-question survey has been developed to collect this information. To view the survey, click here.
Please help us by forwarding this link to your family members, co-workers and friends, who are not Optimist Members, and encourage them to take the survey.
Presidential Recruitment Incentive Winners
Every quarter, each Optimist who sponsors three or more Members has their name placed in a pool. One name is drawn from each Region, and the winner will have $250 awarded to their Club, in their name, to be used for youth activities.
The First Quarter winners are:
Region 1: Bruce Linkletter - Optimist Club of Conestogo-Winterbourne, ON
Region 2: Obryan Leighton - Optimist Club of Uwi Mona, Jamaica
Region 3: Christina Alms - Towson University Optimist Club, MD
Region 4: Taylor Hasenour - USI Optimist Club of Indiana
Region 5: Jason Kraft - Optimist Club of Dickinson, ND
Region 6: Gail Lindley - Mile-Hi Optimist Club of Denver, CO
Region 7: Jane Ross - Optimist Club of Garden Grove-Orange Coast, CA
Region 8: Lucie Choquette - Club Optimiste de St-Jean Sur Richelieu, QC
Congratulations to the first quarter winners of President Ron's Recruitment Incentive!
Keep recruiting Members, so your Club has a chance to win. The more Members in your Club that sponsor three or more new Members, the better your Club's chances are of winning $250 to put towards youth activities!
New Club Building Reminders
Builders of Excellence - Beginning at the 2014 Las Vegas Convention, additional medallions will not be given to Club Builders who have previously received a medallion. Builders of Excellence should bring their medallions to convention, where they will receive stars to indicate the number of Clubs built between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014.
If you have any questions, please contact the New Club Building department at 800-500-8130 ext. 226 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Share Your Club's Pride and Win
The five lucky winners of the 2012-2013 President's Pride Submission Award of $100 are:
Optimist Club of Sacramento Country Club in California (20073)
Buena Park, Suburban Optimist Club in California (15815)
Optimist Club of Kearney Nebraska (10050)
Wilmington Cape Fear Optimist Club in North Carolina (43077)
Byron Optimist Club in Ontario (46035)
Make sure to submit your Club's President's Pride Report for the 2013-2014 year for your Club's chance to win!
Go to www.OptimistLeaders.org to complete the report online - you can fill in information throughout the year by clicking the "Save" button. Once you click the "Submit" button, the information is sent to Optimist International and changes cannot be made. If you prefer to print out a report to mail or fax, please visit www.optimist.org. Completed forms are due by September 30.
Mister Optimist Wants You to Enter the Reel Optimism Contest!
Listen up people; Mister Optimist is here to tell you about an amazing opportunity! Check out the video for details on how your Club could win a $1,000 Club Grant or go to www.optimist.org/ReelOptimism to learn more!
Register Now for the JOOI Convention
JOOI is heading to San Diego for the 2014 JOOI International Convention. This can't miss event will take place on July 6-8, at the Holiday Inn San Diego Bayside. Room rates will be $129 (plus tax and fees) per night.
The JOOI Convention will offer leadership training, opportunities to meet Members from across the organization and the sharing of new project ideas. The beautiful city of San Diego is home to numerous attractions and fun things to do if you choose to stay a few extra days.
New Club Quarterly Draw
All new JOOI Clubs chartered in the 2013-2014 year will be entered into a quarterly draw for a $250 grant towards one of their Clubs' activities. There will be one draw per quarter and only Clubs built in that quarter will qualify for the draw.
District Governor Incentive
District Governors of adult Clubs will receive a playing card towards their poker hand when a JOOI Club is built in a given quarter, but are limited to one card per quarter, regardless of how many JOOI Clubs are built in their District in that quarter. No carryovers will be allowed.
Live from the Board Room
If you've ever wondered what happens in an Optimist International Board of Directors meeting, now is your chance to find out! The board's next meeting - this Friday and Saturday, March 7-8 - will be streaming live at stream.optimist.org.
This link will take viewers to the Optimist channel on the Ustream website. Optimists can watch the meeting and even chat online with other viewers about the discussions and decisions as they happen.