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October 2018


I first want to start off by saying congratulations to Governor Bruce Gilbertson and his team for a very successful 2017-2018 Optimist year. And next I would like to say Happy New Year! We are nearing the end of the first week of our new Optimist year for 2018-2019, and I wanted to make sure I didn’t miss out on wishing every Club a very promising, fulfilling, and a very Happy New Optimist Year.

The Pacific Northwest District theme for the year is “Celebrating Our Past, Investing In Our Future”. As an Optimist District, our primary responsibility is to serve our Clubs by providing resources and support for them. The “Future” of our District relies upon ensuring that we help to foster and strengthen our Clubs. The “Future” of our Clubs rely upon ensuring that we help to foster and strengthen our local youth and communities. Towards this aim, and with your help, we more than doubled our District Leadership Team for the 2018-2019 to focus on building better relationships with our Clubs.

When I served as a Club President, it often felt like Optimist International told us what they thought we needed, versus asking us what we need. Instead of the District and Optimist International telling Clubs what you need, it should be you telling us what your Club needs. This is why the District newsletter for this month is so short, because instead of telling you only what we feel you need to know, I want to ask each Club what they would like to be receiving.

This past weekend we held a District Officer Retreat to help jumpstart the year in planning what we want to accomplish. Much of our discussions revolved around creating better relationships with our Clubs and getting to know what they are passionate about. Over the next few weeks, your District Officers will be contacting each Club to learn what you expect from us and what you would like to see from the District in regard to our communications, newsletters, website, and trainings, as well as the resources and support we can provide for Clubs.

Although each of our Clubs are unique and autonomous entities, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be working to create a better community of support around us. The members of your District Leadership Team can only do so much on their own to provide the support and resources that our Clubs need to grow and thrive. Six Standing Committees were created in our District to focus on areas in Governance, Growth, Finance, Youth Programs, Marketing, and Meetings to aid in this endeavor. I have listed some of the functions and areas they will be focusing on, but we will need the support from members in our Clubs to help provide some guidance in how these committees can be used to better serve our Clubs.

Yours in Optimism,

Ben DeRemer
2018-2020 Governor
Pacific Northwest Optimist District #32

Friday, October 19, 2018