Posted by Linda Mulhern on Oct 04, 2017
President Jerry Faletti opened the meeting at 12:18 pm at the InterContinental Hotel. While conducting the group with a fork, Dick Nicholson led with the song, God Bless America, Bill Given accompanied on the piano and ended with a flourish. President Jerry thanked the greeters this week, Chad Roberts from the Ramsey County Historical Society and Deb Vos, from Metropolitan State University and the scribe, Linda Mulhern from Collins Electrical.
Chuck Standfuss, from Protocol46 said that the Thursday morning speaker will be Trey Titcomb, a Senior Vice President and Private Client Advisor with US Trust. The meeting will be Thursday, October 5th at 7:30 am. Future Thursday meetings will include working on the Dictionary project at Summit Brewery and information will be forthcoming.
It was noted that Ken Crabb, Jerry Meigs, Joe Kovarik and Jerry Faletti will speak next week at the meeting about their experience at the Rotary International Convention. They will talk about the energy and inspiration that any member can take from attending the event.
Susan Spiers introduced Tomas Gonzalez Walder, our Rotary Exchange Student from Paraguay. He introduced himself and spoke about his family. He has a large extended family on both sides and they meet on the weekend to share food with each other. His Rotary club is quite small as compared to the St Paul Rotary club and he was impressed to meet so many club members. He is keeping very busy currently and is impressed that the students switch classes as compared to the teachers switching classes in Paraguay. If you would like to share an experience with Tomas (ie ice fishing, making a snowman or having a bonfire after raking leaves), please reach out to Susan so Tomas can share the experience with you and your family.
Nancy Brady from Neighborhood House introduced Luis Moreno. Luis is originally from Venezuela and was a Humphrey Fellow and as a Young American Leader at Harvard has many suggestions as to how to improve the community. His program was named, “Trust Me, I’m an immigrant.
We need to provide opportunities for all. We have seen many situations where immigrants have created problems, but likewise we tend to forget that even local citizens have created chaos and harm for our society. We tend to forget that most immigrants love our country. They have come to our country because they may have been forced out of their own. Our own country has had many immigrants that have contributed to our society including Albert Einstein as well as locally with JJ Hill. Most of us will usually say that our own families started as immigrants at some point in the past. Unfortunately, we tend to keep our distance with other communities locally and only see the differences. Some of the worst states with large disparities within the United States are in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, South Dakota and Illinois. High school graduation for African Americans is only 34% here in Minnesota and for Hispanic students, the graduation rate in the lowest in the country. We need to improve the opportunities for all groups, because within the next 12-15 years, approximately 25% of population will be people of color and we will need to attract and integrate all of these people into our workplaces.
Luis noted that there are 4 levels of interaction. The first is segregation (living in different communities and not interacting); the second is inclusion (people who share an event with other people and will benefit from the experience); the third is diversity (when different communities attend the same event and all benefit) and the last is integration (when different groups actually interact with each other and have authentic conversations).
He said that the “Welcometer” is very important for increasing your network. People will recognize that they are welcomed to a group, when invitations are sent and people in turn attend an event (ie a Rotary meeting), they in turn are welcomed when they attend, and are asked to share a table at lunch and learn about each other and their interests. When a person feels unwelcome, it is much worse because they do not interact or sit at the same table which only increases the discomfort with interaction. We must all learn to welcome everyone to add to our contacts and networks with people from other communities.
President Faletti thanked Luis for his presentation and gave him a certificate of appreciation. The meeting was adjourned at 1:18 pm and concluded with the Four Way Test.







Linda Mulhern