Mark Dodd
Mar 26, 2018
OneVision's Children's Autism Center
Steve King
Apr 02, 2018
U.S. Representative for Fort Dodge Area
Dr. Megan Srinivas
Apr 09, 2018
Candidate for House of Representatives
Money Talks
Apr 16, 2018
Ann Meyer
Apr 23, 2018
Candidate for Iowa House of Representatives
Tim Kraayenbrink
Apr 30, 2018
Iowa Senator
Club Executives & Directors
President Elect
President Nominee
Immediate Past President
Executive Secretary
Floundation Chair
Board of Director to 2018
Board of Director to 2018
Board of Director to 2018
Board of Director to 2019
Board of Director to 2019
Board of Director to 2019
Board of Director to 2020
Board of Director to 2020
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It was the pleasure of the Club to have as its speaker Dr. Joshua Merchant, newly appointed President of Buena Vista University.  Dr. Merchant return to the Midwest after a four year absence while working with the University of North Florida.  He and his wife (and two sons) are Midwest natives originating from South Central Michigan, specifically Michigan State University, Central Michigan University, and Albion College.  His experiences with Albion College are what drives him to tout small private Midwestern colleges and universities.  Those institutions are most aligned to the needs of their geographic area and best able to combine within their curriculum programs that serve those needs.  This desire is expressed in his "Vision for Buena Vista University" as follows:
  • The Iowa rural demographics of declining numbers of school students mandates that local universities/colleges/community colleges become more focused on the needs of their areas and incorporate area needs into their curriculum;
  • Build educational collaborations between small colleges and universities with area high and grade schools and local Community Colleges.  This goal is shown in the aggressive inroads BVU has made with 16 scattered sites throughout Iowa, all based in local Community Colleges.  This partnership needs to be enhanced;
  • Build an educational community of staff and students that stresses a four-year completion schedule for a bachelor's degree;
  • Strive to make advanced education accessible and affordable, which will require nontraditional approaches to delivery of classes and programs.  Past  history does not guarantee future success.  Rather, innovation and diversity will become the norm.  Next year Iowa is projected to have a student population that is a majority non white;
  • BVU will initiate a new Strategic Plan as follows:
  1. Review the purpose and relevance to the local community (described as a state-wide focus), but focused primarily to Northwest Iowa;
  2. Move to a broader emphasis on food and agriculture and entrepreneurship in those areas;
  3. Improve programs in rural health by developing a bachelor's degree in nursing, which will partner nicely with the program of ICCC. 
Rotarians David Fierke and Randy Kuhlman introduced the club members to the proposed Fort Dodge Fine Arts/REC Complex at today's meeting.  The proposal is to incorporate renovation of the former Warden Plaza into a major community project to provide First Class Fitness and Recreation facilities for the public.  A not for profit organization of stakeholders is being assembled under the original guidance of Webster County and the City of Fort Dodge.  A separate entity will be charged with administration/operations.  The concept includes (as suggested by a wide variety of community visioning and private input methods):
  • 120,000 square foot complex to include a 400 space parking ramp that would permit use by the Warden and downtown customers, keep 10th Street open, and serve the Fine Arts and Recreation Centers;
  • Two pools, one a recreational facility and one a larger facility for competitive events;
  • Two basketball courts with an upper walking track;
  • An indoor play area for children ages 2-10;
  • Restaurant/snack bar;
  • Performing Arts Center of performance area, practice rooms, and training facilities.  The performance area will be convertible for conference and meeting space;
  • Health exercise and cardio-vascular facilities of many types (resistance, weight training, Certified Personal Trainers, spin bikes, etc.);
  • The fine arts center, recreation center, and parking ramp have an estimated cost of $32 million;
  • 120 upscale apartments in the old Warden complex (subject to approval by the State Historical Society that would permit the use of Historic Tax Credits that would be used to fund 40% of the Warden's $30-32 million cost;
  • Fund raising for the community/public section of the project will begin in April.  The Historic Tax Credits very critical to funding the renovation of the Warden will be determined in April.
The following have volunteered to provide the weekly invocation as our meetings start.  If you are unable to make your assigned schedule please contact a substitute that will then check-in with the President prior to the meeting. (Also please note that you can call Don Woodruff, who said he can be a fill-in permanent alternate.)
March 26 - Mel Schroeder
April 2 - Kraig Barber
April 9 - Bill Thatcher
April 16 - Joseph Tofilon
April 23 - Laurie Hendricks
April 30 - Brandon Hauck
May 7 - Ross Nemitz
May 14 -
May 21 -
May 28 - John Daniel
Three Rotarians appeared in the same article of the Sunday "Messenger."  Dan Kinney, Dave Flattery, and David Fierke were pictured with other local officials traveling to Washington D.C. in the near future to lobby for funding for local projects.  The trip will also provide the opportunity to acquaint federal officials with the priorities and projects of local governments.  In the past this trip was vital given the old "Earmark" system of funding, but now that earmarks are gone and most funding will come through categorical programs, the trip is still very important as federal officials need to know our priorities in order to better serve our interests when grants are submitted.  Federal officials will provide guidance and better packaging for local projects seeking federal funding. 
Rotarian Van Zyl appeared in several "Messenger" editions over the past three days in a discussion as to how the Fort Dodge Community Schools would handle students who would "walk-out" of school to protest gun violence. 
Minutes and/or Financial Reports for the 2018 Rotary Year have been posted to the members only section of the Website and are available for viewing by accessing the Members Only Section. 
Rotary is a service organization comprised of community leaders of various professions dedicated to humanitarian causes locally and throughout the world.  The club budgets funds annually for a variety of local causes that may be made available for requests made throughout the year for which the Board of Directors may want to support.  To make application for funds please use the following application format found over two sections of this applet.  When completed please scan your application narrative and send to Fort Dodge Rotary, Box 935, Fort Dodge, Iowa  50501 .  The first page of the application appears below and the second is found by clicking on the "read more" applet. 
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