Barbara Starks
Aug 22, 2018
Chinese Medicine/Tai Chi
Sherri Ulleg
Aug 29, 2018
Boys & Girls Club of Benton Harbor
Marcy Hamilton
Sep 05, 2018
Ox Creek Project
Dave Bly
Sep 12, 2018
5/10k Pumpkin Walk/Run
TED Talk
Sep 19, 2018
How Reading Changes Thinking (from 2018 Rotary Int'l Conf./Brian Saxton)
Sep 26, 2018
DJ Hosbein
Oct 03, 2018 7:00 AM
Grief Counseling/Caring Circle
Patti Masters
Oct 10, 2018
Head Start
Ted Talk
Oct 24, 2018
5th Wednesday Social
Oct 31, 2018
Nov 07, 2018
TED Talk
Nov 14, 2018
Bob Gifford
Nov 21, 2018
Thanksgiving Baskets
Nov 28, 2018
Cindy Kinney
Dec 05, 2018
Holiday Party
Ted Talk
Dec 19, 2018
Upcoming Events
#27802 in District 6360
We meet Wednesdays at 7:00 AM
Elks Lodge (BPOE 541)
601 Riverview Drive
Benton Harbor, MI 49022
Write to us at:
Benton Harbor Sunrise Rotary
PO Box 1552
Benton Harbor. MI 49023-1552
Meeting Presentations and Stories
Two new members were inducted into Rotary today; from left, Pastor Mel Burton sponsor for Sophia Mason, Sophia, Heron Plaza Rico and his sponsor president Joseph Taylor.  Sophia operates her own non-profit, Self-A-Steam, focusing on teaching robotics. Heron is an engineer and Whirlpool. Welcome to Rotary!
The club met in assembly to discuss preparations for our three fundraiser in mid September.  Click on the image below for more information.
Lisa Cripps-Downey returned to provide an update on the Berrien Community Foundation.  The BCF is celebrating its 65th anniversary with $50 million in assets under management. She announced that $186,000 in scholarships were recently awarded.  The variety of the scholarships reflect the donors" wishes, be it for band students, artists, or student athletes. The entire amount was funded by donors' endowments. In other news, BCF is now accepting hard assets such as houses, cars or art collections. Lisa explained that non-profits, such as our club's foundation, is eligible to establish an "Agency Fund" to access BCF services of professional investment, gifting grant processing and reporting. There are volunteer slots available for scholarship review committees, youth advisory council and more.  To donate or learn more visit the website by clicking here.
Momono Sakura, on the left with two friends from St. Joe High, returned to her host club to make her final presentation. Her highlights were too numerous to recount here but a few will probably stick with her for a long time.  She loved: shopping in South Bend; traveling to Chicago for a Cubs game and the stage performance of Hamilton; visiting Disney World, the Grand Canyon and more. She took pride in offering a Japanese Culture Class at school. The shyness she exhibited on her arrival last July was completely absent this time.  She reported that she had performed a Japanese dance at the recent RYE talent show.  She had words of praise and love for her two host moms, Kelly and Kim.  She plans to offer an English language course when she returns to Japan. Shown below she was recognized  by president Joseph Taylor for her fine presentation.
From left, Julie, Eddie, Lee, Dyann, Michael, Brian and Dave were on the assembly line to rehab the racing pumpkins for use in the Great Pumpkin Festival Race/Raffle.  Also helping were Sue, Cindy and Bob.
Dr. Trevor Kubatzke  has been president of Lake Michigan College for nearly a year.  He made his first visit to Rotary to present an update on the college. He was happy to find his new college had the lowest tuition within 100 miles, was ready to open its viticulture center with 25 students, offered a residence hall with apartment style rooms, including laundry.  The college also is ready to close on the purchase of the Western Michigan University building on the campus.  It will become the business education center.  Classrooms are also changing to offer live, live streaming and stored video for later review and study.  A flat tire will not cause a student to miss class!  Three classrooms are now operational; plans are to update all the classrooms.  LMC awarded its first bachelor degree.  Benton Harbor promise students are doing much better with the Start to Finish initiative.
The club had several new books left in our store room so we made an extra distribution.  The poster above and several individual thank yous were shared at our club meeting.
Capt. Rockey Adams hosted the club at the Berrien County Emergency Management Operations Center.  The main tactical room is filled with communications equipment organized in clusters.  During an emergency  the clusters are filled with personnel involved with a particular aspect, for example, health, or first responders.  Rockey took the opportunity to make us aware of two tools each member may want to add to their side, namely Smart 911 and B-Ware (Short for Berrien Awareness).  See the images below. Click here for more information.
President Joseph Taylor, in response to an inquiry for a club member, explained that Juneteenth, is a shortened form of June 19th.  The day celebrates that date in 1865 when Major General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas, to declare the end of the Civil War and issue an order freeing all of the slaves in Texas.  The announcement was two and one-half years after Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation in 1865. The date is commonly called "Freedom Day". A murdered messenger is one possible explanation for the delay.  Louisiana slave owners had moved to Texas to continue operating their plantations with slave labor.
  Joe quoted president Trump's June 19, 2018 announcement as follows: "As a Nation we vow to never forget the millions of African Americans who suffered the evils of slavery. Together we honor the unbreakable spirit ad countless contributions of generations of African Americans to the story of American Greatness."
   Twenty States celebrate Juneteenth as an official holiday.


President Joseph Taylor announced that the board of directors for the Benton Harbor Area Schools approved the formation of an Interact Club at the high school.  A committee will be formed to help establish a chapter next school year 

Our club's foundation provided a grant to help 21 graduating seniors enjoy a trip to Toronto, Canada. The students paid for most of the bus trip. The group purchased passports for the zoo, aquarium, etc.  Highlights included Castle Loma and walking on the glass floor several stories up.  The kids enjoyed the diversity of people and food.  They quickly learned that a dollar from USA was worth $1.20 Canadian. People were very friendly and welcoming.  Our own Felicia Smith was one three chaperones.  The photo above is hers.
Joseph Taylor, right, president elect of the our club, presents Rick Villa, president of St. J-BH, a sign to recognize St. Joseph-Benton Harbor Rotary on the 100th anniversary of its charter. Several members of the club joined a host of Rotarians in the celebration and to hear Rotary International president Ian Risley's keynote address. (Photo courtesy of Bill Langbehn, Langbehn Communication Services)
Dave Boelke, shown in full "hunter's orange", with rifle and backpack, just as he wore setting out to hunt elk in Colorado.  Dave's father introduced him to elk hunting in 1973.  He's made annual trips to continue the tradition. He wanted a more intense experience so in 2016 he booked a "deep camp" trip with an outfitter. He planned to spend a week with another hunter in a cabin about four hours by horseback from the outfitter's base camp.  It was November at an altitude above 10,000 feet.  On the first morning, he and his fellow hunter made a plan to rendezvous at a selected landmark about 3hrs away.  Dave planned to circle right, his partner would circle left, both men looking for signs of movement by elk or bears.  Dave overshot the landmark and after a while realized the cold night was quickly approaching.  His backpack had all the normal equipment"  gps, compass, snacks, matches, water, mirror and Kindle ebook reader. He built a fire and planned to head back in the morning. He refused to panic.  The gps, which Dave had depended on to navigate the forest, had a dead battery.  Without that device he had no idea which way it was to the cabin. He decided to stay put until he was rescued. Dave's hunting buddy reported him lost the next morning.  Eventually Dave saw the helicopters and moved in their direction. The search party that grew to 43 people and ten helicopters took three days to see the shimmering reflection off Dave's mirror.  Dave was hungry and dehydrated but otherwise OK. Dave plans to add fresh batteries to his emergency kit.
Scott Chrispell, manager of electronics research & engineering, had the answer to our question.  LECO is a shortened version of Laboratory Equipment Corporation.  The company was founded by Carl Shultz and George Krasl in 1936.  Today descendants Carl and Chris Warren manage this family owned business with 600 employees in southwest Michigan and 1,400 world wide.  LECO’s first product was an analyzer that measured the carbon content of steel, a very important parameter.  LECO continued to focus on analytical instruments that focused on increasing quality of production or efficiency.  Their reputation and expertise led to expansion in to other production areas.  Today they make equipment for metals, energy, mining, food and managing the environment.
LECO is vertically integrated, making it own enclosures, controls, electronics, sensors, software and more. Of course today they have apps for iPhones for remote access and management.
   Scott described the new building going up on Hilltop road as a customer experience center.
   Last year was LECO’s first entry in the Great Bed Race put on by Rotary and Slumberland.  Scott is promising a faster bed this year and a team that will be better prepared for the competition.
President Elect Joseph Taylor, left, is shown received the president's pin from Brian Saxton.  Joe will officially take the reins on July 1st.  This was the culmination of Installation Night which included Brian's review of a great club year under his leadership. He named Alice Ford his Rotarian of the Year for her innovative "garage sale" to raise funds for polio eradication.
Rachel Cram, with sponsor Lee Scherwitz, left, and president Brain Saxton is shown during her induction ceremony.  Rachel is a former Rotary Youth Exchange participant, spending a year in France.  Rachel is a financial analyst at Whirlpool and lives in St. Joseph.  Welcome to Rotary.
If you fly the flag on Memorial Day please follow the procedure: (Courtesy of Joshua Claybourn, usmemorialday.org)
"In traditional observance, the flag of the United States is raised briskly to the top of the staff and then solemnly lowered to the half-staff position, where it remains only until noon. It is then raised to full-staff for the remainder of the day. The half-staff position remembers the more than one million men and women who gave their lives in service of their country. At noon, their memory is raised by the living, who resolve not to let their sacrifice be in vain, but to rise up in their stead and continue the fight for liberty and justice for all."
 Tara Gillette is executive director for the Area Agency on Aging.  She is also the instructor/facilitator for the new Aging Mastery Program, a ten week course focused on health, financial security and overall well being.  Course attendees also make new friends and learn new skills. The next course runs in St. Joseph on Thursdays, 1-2:30 pm, June 21 through August 23, 2018.  Fee $99, Scholarships available. Another course will begin in September.  Contact Tara at 269.408.4369 or taragillette@areaagencyonaging.org.
Our own club's Bryan Tutton just loves putting his tractor to work,  Below shows the Fresh Start Children's Garden are Bryan prepared it for this year's planting season.  He also prepped the community gardens near Abundant Life and AIM Churches.
Bryan also works with local business and the First Church of God to plant flowers in the City Center Park and the Arts District.  Local businesses provide financial support and church members plant the flowers.  The photo below is from a recent HP edition.
Marcy Hamilton is shown during her induction ceremony between her sponsor Mike Kinney, left, and president Brian Saxton.  Marcy is the Deputy Director/Senior Planner for the South west Michigan Planning Commission.  She lives in St. Joseph with her 15 year old daughter. She is a member of Preserve the Dunes and Watershed Council, is a founding board member of Sustainable Business Forum, and has been actively promoting clean water, beaches and rivers. Welcome to Rotary.
Aicha Camera, on left, and Momono Sakura, shown with Lee Schewitz, shortly after Momono arrived from Japan last August.  Aicha had just returned from a year in Japan so they bonded in a special way.  Aicha is now attending University of Florida studying International Relations.  She earned a 4.0 in her first semester.  Momono and Aicha spent the meeting speaking in Japanese and enjoyed sharing their experiences.
The club's Foundation presented grants to eight organizations.  The awards went to Benton Harbor High School, Readiness Center, Children's Fresh Start Garden, Junior Achievement, Lory's Place, Countryside Academy, Toys for the Needy and Benton Harbor Public Library. Shown above, from left, Lee Scherwitz (foundation president), Emma Kinnard, Audrey Lester, Becki Tomsheck, Eddie Marshall, Katie Boyer, Stephanie Kohler, Pat Miller, Brian Saxton (club president), Sister Pualita and Martha Thieneman.
Our own club's Farai Rukunda is shown along side the school being constructed in his home village in Zimbabwe.  A recent fundraising dinner and additional donations raised $6,000 for books and  desks. See the coverage in the Zimbabwe News, click here.
Club Information

About Our Rotary Club

Benton Harbor-Sunrise

Service Above Self

We meet Wednesdays at 7:00 AM
Elks Lodge (BPOE 541)
601 Riverview Dr.
For mail: PO Box 1552
Benton Harbor, MI  49022-1552
United States
District Site
Venue Map

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Club Executives & Directors
President Elect
Public Relations
Immediate Past President
Club Administration
Club Service
The Rotary Foundation

Whitney Hadanek - May 4

Don Mitchell - May 12

Lynn Sperry - May 17

Olivia Starks - May 25

Julie Webb - May 29

Dyann Chenault - Jun 10

Skip Heavener - Jun 13

Bob Gifford - Jun 15

Dave Bly - Jun 20

Bob McFeeter - Jun 25

Rotary membership gives men and women an opportunity to forge new friendships and share the rewards of helping others through volunteer service.