So, Solar Eclipse 2017 is now history… nothing really changed, I guess, but it was a nice break. Past President Leah Griffith deserves a big “thank you” for arranging the interesting program on it for us beforehand, and especially for the opportunity to get the approved viewing glasses. (One of my dogs, Shuga, even enjoyed watching.)
A “DOUBLE HEADER”
We had two speakers last week: Mike Pollock, the county director for Helping Hands Re-Entry Outreach Centers, and our George Fox intern, Dominique Thibault.
In a very authentic, moving and oftentimes humorous Classification talk, Mike started “at the beginning” with his birth: the heaviest child ever born at that hospital up to that time, at 10 1/2 lbs!
Originally from Long Island, New York, Mike described how he spent 35 years–from ages 13 to 48–as an alcoholic/addict. A cardiac event at age 48 brought him to the point of “enough is enough,” and he began getting his life together.
His job now is helping others get their lives together. “The best part of my job is when I am thanked by people for their ability to be clean and sober,” he said.
There is definitely a forecast for increased employment opportunities in his field. “The suicides that are happening in Newberg are so difficult. There is a huge opioid addiction problem. We need mental health and drug counselors. There’s plenty of need,” he said.
Mike’s advice for others thinking about his career field: “Get a thick skin. You’ll have people who love you and hate you. They will yell things as they drive by your house. You’re likely to upset some parents in trying to prevent people from getting high. But you have to understand, that’s the disease…some can walk away from it and some can’t.”
Why did he join Rotary? “Because all the other clubs that asked required I have a Harley,” he joked. He said he felt a bit intimidated because he saw successful people in Rotary, “and I just started my success in 2010. But lo and behold, you guys are people! And I want to be around successful people.” He said he now uses the Four-Way Test in his work.
He told us he is basically a private, shy person who enjoys fishing and cars. He volunteers with the Oregon Health Plan “to get a better idea of where the needs are.”
“That about sums it up,” he said. Thanks for sharing your amazing story with us, Mike.
REPORT FROM OUR MARKETING INTERN
Dominique started his presentation by handing out two impressive-looking documents that were the result of his summer internship with us: A Marketing Report and a Recruitment Plan.
As with all good marketing plans, Dominique started with research. He summarized some of the key results for us, as well as the strategies he developed from them.
- Regarding prior knowledge of Rotary, 73% of those answering basically knew nothing about Rotary prior to joining.
- When asked how they were recruited to join the club, 60% percent of those answering were invited and 28% were self-recruited.
Since the research showed that more exposure is needed for Rotary in our community, Dominique discussed some suggestions as to how to increase it:
- More use of social media
- Use the Newberg Graphic
- More messaging at the Pancake Breakfast
He outlined the target audience for his plan: professionals in the 35-to-55-year-old age bracket. “Folks in this bracket have a passion to serve, and there is a wide range of professionals in Newberg. They will want to see our mission and our service projects,” he said.
The main goal of the marketing plan, according to Dominique, is to increase awareness. He recommended that a marketing subcommittee be formed, with people assigned to social media, events, and outreach.
“It’s very important to keep the website updated,” he said. “And Facebook is the most important tool to use because it reaches the target audience and spreads info fast. Content is key because it keeps the target audience updated.”
He also suggested more use of promotional items, like coffee mugs and tee-shirts, and signage to create more interest and exposure.
For the recruitment plan, Dominique said he wanted to challenge current members to recruit new ones. He also recommended setting a meeting on how to recruit based on the occupational fields we would like to attract.
When asked what lessons he learned during this process, Dominique said, “Don’t be afraid to ask questions.” He said he knew nothing about Rotary when he started, but learned what a diverse service organization it is.
Great job, Dominique. Kudos to Geoff Gilmore for overseeing Dominique’s internship. Please see Geoff if you did not get copies of the reports.
Gary Stewart, the new president of the Morning Club, was our honored guest. He extended two invitations–to the upcoming Pig Roast (see details below) and to the Oktoberfest, Sept. 14-16 at the Cultural Center.
Rick Kaufman has filled out the paperwork to become a member of our club. Fingers crossed he can be officially inducted by District Governor Renee Campbell when she visits on the 30th.
Jim McMaster introduced Terry Paskett and his two sons, who had volunteered to lay the bricks for the new Cultural Center patio. Wow…that is some volunteer service.
Help welcome freshmen at Newberg High School from 11am to 1pm on Sept. 5. Paula Radich recently sent out an email with the sign up sheet.
FLOTSAM AND JETSAM
- Al Herriges announced his 6th grandchild is on the way. Not to be outdone, Mike Caruso announced #10 for him
- Laura Tilrico is celebrating her 42nd wedding anniversary…and they said it would never last…..
- Dave Parker’s oldest son is getting married in a little over a week……congrats, Dave!
- Family Fun at Avamere Newberg Sept. 1; 10am – 6pm. Please RSVP to Rachel Huber at 503-554-0767
- You’re invited to a pig roast……and a fun, casual get-together of local service clubs at the third annual Newberg Early Bird Rotary end-of-summer BBQ.
Dr. David Krier
At “The Grove”
18891 River Rd. NE, St. Paul
Thursday, September 7th
5 to 9pm
Please bring a side dish to share, a drink and a chair. Plates, tableware and cups provided. Look for the Rotary “wheel” sign at the entrance to the driveway.