The theme for May is Rotary’s fifth avenue of service: Youth Service. Youth Service recognizes the importance of empowering youth and young professionals through leadership development programs.  The following Rotary programs fall under Youth Service: 

Rotaract (ages 18 to 30, but now extended to unlimited age).  District 5580 has Rotaract clubs at the University of Jamestown, ND, University of MN in Duluth, and Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario.

Interact (High School age)

Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (Camp RYLA for students who have completed grade 10 or 11).

Youth Exchange (out-bound to various countries around the world or In-bound for students from abroad wishing to attend high school in the USA or Canada).

Camp RYLA (July 10-16, 2022) and Youth Exchange have been inactive since 2020 due to COVID-19 but will be active again in Rotary Year 2022-23.

The virtual District Conference featured 15-30-minute segments that were recorded for those unable to attend on April 21 & 22.  These segments can also be used for programs for clubs needing a speaker.

I want to congratulate all the clubs receiving awards this year for a successful year and a job well done!  I also want to congratulate:

Mark Billings of Dickinson Rotary for Distinguished Rotarian in Outstanding International Service

Krystal Murphy of Park Rapids for Distinguished Rotarian in Outstanding Vocational Service

Dawn Pruitt of Dickinson Rotary for Distinguished Rotarian in Outstanding Community Service

Stephan Margarit of Thunder Bay Fort William Rotary for Distinguished Rotarian in Outstanding Club Service

Mark Leutgeb of Duluth Skyline Rotary for Rotarian of the Year!


Regarding the Russian invasion of Ukraine, if you or your club would like to offer financial assistance, please contribute to Rotary International’s Disaster Response Fund.  Past Rotary International President John Germ noted that the Rotary Foundation Trustees will prioritize contributions to the Disaster Response Fund and has extended the deadline to June 30, 2022, to those Districts affected by Putin’s aggression.  The expedited disaster response grants will be used to supply water, food, medicine, shelter, and clothing.

The Vision statement of Rotary declares: “Together we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change across the globe, in our communities and in ourselves!”  Let us “Serve to Change Lives” (for the better)!