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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Optimist Clubs are encouraged to host the Optimist International Essay Contest

We're solidly into the 2017-2018 school year and eleven days into the new Optimist Club administrative year. What does that mean? It means that every Optimist Club should be thinking about the Optimist International Essay Contest. 

The annual contest begins at the Optimist Club level. Students under the age of 18 as of October 1, 2017 are invited to submit a 700 to 800 word essay on the topic: "Can Society Function Without Respect?"

Click on this link to find an Optimist Club near you. 

Optimist Club presidents should delegate a member of their club to be the Club Essay Chairperson. A complete planning guide is available here. 

Winning club entries should be forwarded to the PNW District Optimist International Essay Contest Chairperson Monique Connors by February 28, 2018. Contact Monique here or at 360.878.3886. 

Monday, October 2, 2017

It's the truth

As we start a new administrative year for Optimist International, it is a good time to restate the goals of this website and its sister website at experienceoptimism.com

The pnwdistrictoptimist.com and experienceoptimism.com websites exist to help publicize the good work of Optimist Clubs and Optimist Club members in the Pacific Northwest and around the world; illustrate and advise best practices in program and membership development; and to expand the reach of Optimist International, its mission, vision, and purposes through the creation of new Optimist Clubs.

As is often advised in its stories, the authors try to utilize optimism in their approach; however, when we work only for the best, we must sometimes point out or highlight negative environments in order to improve upon them. When this occurs, it is meant to provoke discussion of ideas and not to criticize individuals. We belong to this organization in order to improve lives; not to to tear them down. We expect the same from others.

Recently The New York Times Magazine ran a full page about truth. It said:
The truth is hard.
The truth is hidden.
The truth must be pursued.
The truth is hard to hear.
The truth is rarely simple.
The truth isn’t so obvious.
The truth can’t be glossed over.
The truth has no agenda.
The truth can’t be manufactured.
The truth doesn’t take sides.
The truth isn’t red or blue.
The truth is hard to accept.
The truth pulls no punches.
The truth is powerful.
The truth is under attack.
The truth is worth defending.
The truth requires taking a stand.
The truth is more important now than ever.

We are living in a politically charged and divisive world fueled by those who are quick to call something with which they disagree as fake or trash. 

We humbly ask that our readers seek the bigger picture and begin to work together to bring out the best in youth, community, and ourselves. 

In other words, readers, if the truth hurts, don't lay blame on the person who pointed out the truth; work together to fix it. Be #optimiststrong - make a difference. Make this world a better place in which to live.

If you would like to discuss this post or this website, provide a story, or just say hi, please click here. Thank you. 

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Happy New Year, Optimists!

Happy New Year!

Optimist Club members get to say that popular, celebratory phrase twice every year.

We say it on January 1 along with the rest of the world as we wish a Happy New Year, peace and prosperity to all.

Then on October 1, we say it again as we wish a Happy New Year to all of our Optimist Club friends, colleagues, and participants in our Optimist Club programs.

For the latter group, we also wish them health, happiness and prosperity along with all the other tenets of the Optimist Creed.

We make a promise this day to be the best Optimist Club members we can be and to lead our clubs to success, for with hope and positive vision, Optimist Club members bring out the best in youth, community and ourselves.

Happy New Year, Optimists! Start today to make your Optimist Club the best it can be: Be an Honor Club. Be #OptimistStrong

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Do it again, with hope

It's that time of year when we look forward to a new Optimist Club and District administration. It's time to finish the paperwork that declares your Optimist Club to be an Honor Club, install new officers, and begin again on October 1.

But wait, that means there are still six days in this year! What is the motivation to finish strong?

The motivation for every Optimist Club member should be intrinsic. We know deep inside that a strong Optimist Club is good for our community, the children and ourselves. We feel it every time we host a Halloween or Christmas party, sponsor a sports team, put on a scholarship contest, or share fellowship with our colleagues at an Optimist Club meeting, among other things.

We know that we make a difference by being part of an Optimist Club and that little intrinsic motivation that we feel is called hope. We share hope for the future and we celebrate our hope as we meet our challenges and goals with others as a member of an Optimist Club. That is why every year, as we finish the Optimist International administrative year, we look forward to the next with even more optimism. We know that the next one will be the very best ever.

Finish strong, my Optimist Club friends, so that you may start the new year even stronger.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

What is an Optimist Strong Conference?

Optimist Club and District leaders recently received their latest edition of the Leadership Hotline for September. It showed our current Optimist International President, Jim Kondrasuk, encouraging all members to do all they can to help their Optimist Club achieve Honor Club, a must for all Optimist Clubs to be successful far into the future.

It also showed the Optimist International President-designate, Nick Prillaman, promoting an Optimist Strong Conference. Now, I have no idea what an Optimist Strong Conference is, but according to the message, your lieutenant governor does and can share all the information with you. 

This post is being shared as a caution. 

In 2016-2017, Optimist Clubs in the PNW District received very little communication from the District leaders. If we are to move forward in 2017-2018, that must change. We can't be left on the sidelines to wonder what Optimist International is promoting. The District is essential in the trickle-down communication method that is used by the parent organization.

In Optimist International, districts serve as an administrative arm of Optimist International. That means they provide leadership, assistance, and above all, communication from the top down. The district helps clubs apply incentives and encouragement that emanates from Optimist International in order to help the club, district, and organization grow in membership and service.

The district must be careful not to pursue issues that take away from the ability for Optimist Clubs to grow and serve their local communities. If  district leaders will only follow the model given by Optimist International, and add some regional camaraderie and local enthusiasm, we will grow as a district and the organization will benefit as equally as those communities we serve. That begins with communication.

So tell us, please, what is an Optimist Strong Conference? And what do I have to do to participate?

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Finish your Optimist Club Pride Report online by September 30

If you've been an Optimist Club president or secretary/treasurer before, you probably know it as the President's Pride report; but this important report now has a new name, one that is reflective of the collective achievements of every Optimist Club member.

What is it? The Club Pride Report.

The Optimist Club Pride Report serves as a quick annual review of the activities of each Optimist Club and it is a requirement for the designation of Honor Club.

It is easy to complete and can be done online at optimistleaders.org . Log in and click on "Reports" on the right side of the screen. On the next screen, select the Club Pride Report. This report is due online by September 30.

You may also submit hard copies of the form via fax or mail. Click here to download a copy of the Club Pride Report. While this may seem an easier option for some, the report may not show as completed until well after September 30 as mailed forms are accepted later in order for staff to enter them by hand. 

Please finish this step towards Honor Club and then check off that the rest are complete too. 

As a reminder, the steps to Honor Club are:
  • Complete three or more service projects each year 
  • Complete the President’s Club Pride Report and Club Officer-Elect Form 
  • Recognize a Club member or local community individual 
  • Grow Club by Net of +3 in membership
  • Appoint a Club Foundation Representative and make a non-restricted contribution to the OIF or CCOF 
  • Conduct a Membership Recruitment/Drive (i.e. NOW) Program 
  • Club President or Club President-Elect (or two Designees) attend District Convention (or two other District meetings/conferences) 
  • Be current on District and OI Dues and Fees
Thanks for being an Honor Club!

Friday, September 1, 2017

Ride with the Chehalis-Centralia Optimist Club

One of the annual activities of the Chehalis-Centralia Optimist Club is its annual motorcycle fundraiser. Designed to get people out and active in their community, it covers over 90 miles before ending with a silent auction and raffle.

The 7th Annual End of Summer Motorcycle Ride will take place on September 9, 2017. Please click below on "see more" to find out how you can join the fun.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Here is how to receive a free registration to the 100th Optimist International Convention

Optimist International and President Jim Kondrasuk are encouraging Optimist Clubs to become Honor Clubs. In addition to  declaring the 2016-2017 administrative year to be "The Year of the Honor Club," they are adding an extra incentive in the fourth quarter of the year.

The incentive will reward every Optimist Club a free registration to the 100th Optimist International Convention in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

To earn this reward, an Optimist Club must be an Honor Club or better and add 5 new members between July 1, 2017 and September 30, 2017.

Doing so will make your club stronger!

It's rather obvious that more members will allow your club extra hands to do more projects in your community. Being an Honor Club proves that your club is practicing excellent administrative practices as well.

Here are the requirements for Honor Club:
  • Complete three or more service projects each year 
  • Complete the President’s Pride Report and Club Officer-Elect Form 
  • Recognize a Club member or local community individual 
  • Grow Club by Net of +3 in membership
  • Appoint a Club Foundation Representative and make a non-restricted contribution to the OIF or CCOF 
  • Conduct a Membership Recruitment/Drive such as a NOW Program 
  • Club President or Club President-Elect (or two Designees) attend District Convention (or two other District meetings/conferences) 
  • Be current on District and OI Dues and Fees
Can your Optimist Club be an Honor Club. Of course it can! And we can't wait to see your representative in Ottawa.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Play boxes come to Vernon, BC

The North Okanagan Optimist Club in Vernon, British Columbia has developed a year-round approach to its popular Unplug and Play program. In addition to its annual city-wide awareness campaign held in late April each year, it has also developed Unplug and Play boxes. The boxes, filled with balls, hula hoops, and other children's toys, have been placed around town. They ask for help from neighborhood volunteers to padlock the boxes at night and keep the club aware if new supplies are needed.

What an awesome way to raise awareness for the Optimist Club and its mission: Bringing out the best in youth, community and you.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Boise's Coach Harsin played Optimist Football

Coach Harsin PNW Optimist Clubs
When Optimist Club members attend district meetings and conventions, they learn more about the communities they visit. During the 2017 PNW District Convention, attendees got to learn just a little bit more about Boise, the Boise Noon Optimist Club, the Boise Noon Optimist Football Program and its relationship with the Boise State Broncos. 

Specifically, it is a very personal relationship for Head Coach of the Broncos, Bryan Harsin. During a luncheon program, Coach Harsin shared that he started his football career at nine-years of age with the Boise Noon Optimist Club Football Program. 

What drew him to football? Harsin said that as a child, he liked football because he got to hit people. While that may seem overly aggressive, it is a positive way to channel young people's energy, build sportsmanship, teamwork, and strategy. As a coach, he teaches his players personal development along with their athletic ability. 

Optimist Clubs have a positive impact in their communities and on the young people they serve. The Optimist Youth Sports Complex in Boise and Coach Harsin are two examples of many from just one Optimist Club. Imagine what an Optimist Club might achieve in your community and get involved! Get your friends, family, neighbors and coworkers together start an Optimist Club today. 

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The 2017 PNW District Optimist Convention review

Susan Fix Optimist InternationalThe PNW District - Optimist International Convention was held August 10-12, 2017 in Boise, Idaho. Approximately sixty-five Optimist Club leaders from British Columbia, Idaho, Oregon and Washington gathered for training of incoming officers and shared fellowship at a number of social activities organized by the Meridian and Boise Noon Optimist Clubs.

Susan Fix, Optimist International Representative and Vice President of the Great Plains Region, led club officer-elect training and help prepare incoming club presidents and secretary/treasurers for their upcoming roles. She emphasized Honor Club as a way to success.

Susan also presented a session on how to have fun meetings. Of course business needs to be conducted, but that doesn't mean club members can't have fun in the process. Her tips focused on being kind, remembering those who weren't there, celebrating those who are, and influencing positive attitudes and expectations.

Governor Rick Matkin held a brusque board meeting.  Three decisions were made affirming policy amendments that were introduced as a package with a "do pass" recommendation from the executive committee. As different as this approach was from prior board meetings, a small amount of discussion was held and a summary of the results are:
  1. Lieutenant Governors are expected to make one visit to each club in their zone during the year.
  2. Voting strength for clubs has been changed to one vote per each ten members or majority fraction thereof and one delegate registered, certified eligible, and present for the convention may cast all votes on behalf of the club.
  3. The Board of Directors, which consists of the executive committee and all Optimist Club presidents in the District, may be installed at the annual convention or at the first opportunity following the beginning of the administrative year. 
In additional business, Governor-elect Bruce Gilbertson requested that the PNW District CCDHH Contest be placed in a one-year hiatus. This was amended to "if participants outside of British Columbia are not secured by December 2017."

In response to concerns raised regarding the poor accessibility of online resources, a resolution was passed to create a committee to review and recommend changes to the District's websites by October 1, 2017.

We heard there were four or five new club building ideas on the drawing board, including one in Spokane that Jim Boyd, Director of Strategic Growth, Optimist International, will be attending for the second time; however, those in attendance were not invited to participate.

The Board of Directors meeting ended following the election of the Governor-elect. Candidates Teresa Wallace and Ben DeRemer, both of the Gresham Optimist Club, made speeches outlining their vision and experience. In the first time that vote totals were ever disclosed, Ben was elected in a close race, 39 to 31.

After an afternoon of free time, approximately five hours later, the Governor's Banquet was held. Highlights included:
  • Sponsor pins for recruiting new members were awarded.
  • Committee chairs who had lived up to their personal goals submitted to the Governor at the beginning of the year were given a gift from the Governor.
  • Rose Brodie was named the Roy Proctor Lifetime Achievement recipient.
  • Susan Fix gave a motivational and interactive address with tips to encourage attendees to live a happy and kind life.
  • Awarding of silent auction items. Approximately $755 was raised with the disbursements as follows: Optimist International Foundation - $105; Childhood Cancer Campaign - $45; Children's Optimist Foundation of Canada - $30; and the Pacific Northwest District treasury - $565. 
With the dinner coming to a close, the officers for 2017-2018 were installed by Susan Fix.
In the picture, from the left, are:
pnw optimist executive committee
Susan Fix, Vice President
Ben DeRemer, Governor-elect
Gary Smith, Lt. Governor
Bruce Gilbertson, Governor-designate
Tyler Carr, Lt. Governor
Doug Row, Lt. Governor
Joe Shreve, Lt. Governor
Peter Sudduth, Lt. Governor
Mary White, District Secretary/Treasurer
Not shown, Scott Keller, Lt. Governor

Speaking very briefly, Governor-designate Bruce said that he did not want to be a Distinguished Governor. He wants to be the Governor of a Distinguished District. He invited everyone to come to the next meeting in Kennewick, Washington October 27-28, 2017 and learn more.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Ben DeRemer elected as Governor 2018-2019 of the PNW Optimist Clubs

Ben DeRemer PNW District Optimist
Ben DeRemer of the Gresham, Oregon Optimist Club has been chosen as Governor-elect of the PNW District - Optimist International. He will become Governor of the PNW District on October 1, 2018.

Ben has previously served as the President of the Gresham Scouters and Gresham Optimist Clubs and both clubs earned Honor and Distinguished awards during his term. He has been a Lieutenant Governor of Oregon Zone #3 and a District Committee Chair overseeing Activities and Awards. A member since 2012, he has already earned the Builder of Excellence Award from Optimist International for starting a new Optimist Club.

In July 2017, Ben was invited to attend the Optimist International Leadership Academy. While there, attendees were encouraged to step-up into leadership roles in their respective districts with the goal of becoming a governor sooner than later. Ben has done just that and we congratulate him on his enthusiasm and accomplishments.

Each year, at their annual conventions, Districts in the Optimist International organization choose the person who will lead them one year from now. This person spends their first year as a governor-elect where they observe, analyze, help and plan. On their promotion to Governor, they bring their strategic plan forward to help the District they serve, and thereby Optimist International, grow in membership and service to youth, communities and ourselves.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Teachers are encouraged to join an Optimist Club

Your children are ready to return to school (well, maybe not so much) and Optimist International is ready too. To help prepare the youth for a major in optimism, we encourage every Optimist Club to invite one teacher - or more - to join. 

From August 1 through September 30, 2017, teachers and all school personnel may join an Optimist Club for only $30. 

According to Optimist International, everyone wins when teachers become members of an Optimist Club because:
  • A strong connection with local schools is extremely beneficial for your Optimist Club. More teachers on your roster strengthens this connection.
  • They can open doors for attracting more students to our youth projects - including Oratorical, Essay, Sports and other programs.
  • Teachers are able to provide first hand insight into the needs of the children of your community.
  • Provides the foundation for new Junior Optimist Clubs.
  • Your Optimist Club will serve more children!
Find out more at this link: https://goo.gl/4ErNRm

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Leaders are not created equal

This is the time of year that Districts in Optimist International begin looking for new leaders. That's
not to say that they aren't always looking; it is only an acknowledgement that during the District Conventions held in August and September of each year, the search gets serious because the governors-elect are chosen at this time.

It is a sad but true statement that membership in Optimist Clubs is declining. That means the leadership pool is also smaller and often it comes down to individuals who have hung on the longest are finally being given an opportunity to lead.

Let me repeat: those who wouldn't have been considered when there was competition are rising to positions for which they are neither prepared or qualified. And we wonder why membership in our Optimist Clubs is declining?

This post is a call to all past and potential leaders. We must not be apathetic or resigned to the path of least resistance. We must not be complacent, resting on past achievements.

We must be proactive.

Successful past governors must step forward to lead again, bringing with them the knowledge and experience that is needed to help the organization and our Optimist Clubs grow. Optimist volunteers may be our greatest asset; however, skilled leadership, focused on growth, is the skill that will take the organization forward long after its 100th anniversary.

Friday, July 14, 2017

A new logo for Optimist International

It is not really a secret, but then again, it is not really being talked about all that much either. On October 1, 2017, Optimist International will officially begin using a new logo. Revealed during the 98th Annual Convention in the summer of 2016, Optimist Clubs, Districts and Optimist International have had a year to use old inventories of stationary and brochures in preparation for the new logo release.

optimist international logo

This year, at the 99th Annual Convention, attendees saw the new logo wherever they looked - from the Sunport Airport upon arrival in Albuquerque, New Mexico (nice touch!), to the convention center banners, on the convention stage, and on most handout materials.

You might agree that the logo looks familiar. It is very much like the watch that Distinguished Optimist Club presidents receive at the end of a successful year.

In addition to the horizontal version seen here, there is also a stacked version where the logo appears above the Optimist International name. Please feel free to save the logo for use with your Optimist Club. We understand that the logos and branding guidelines will soon be available at the Optimist International website under marketing tools.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

International Convention recognition

One of the highlights of the Optimist International Convention is to recognize those who will lead the organization's districts in the coming year.

For 2017-2018, the PNW District is proud to introduce and celebrate Governor-elect Bruce Gilbertson.

Bruce is shown here with President-designate Nick Prillaman (left) and the entire West Coast team (right).

Monday, July 10, 2017

Optimist International leadership looks to the future

The 99th Annual Optimist International Convention was held in Albuquerque, New Mexico July 6-8, 2017. During the event, an International President-elect was announced, the International President-designate was introduced, and the Immediate Past International President was celebrated as the current International President presided over the business and social events.

optimist international presidents
(L to R) Nick Prillaman, Jim Kondrasuk, Dave Bruns, Rebecca Butler Mona

President Jim Kondrasuk reminded the assembly that there are approximately 90 days left in the administrative year which is enough time for all clubs to achieve the Honor Club recognition. Find out more about Honor Club at this link. Under his chairmanship, the results of the bylaws amendments were:
  • Issue 1 - Dues and Fees - simplifies language, emphasizes policy, and changes the tier 1, 2, and 3 countries to developing and non-developing countries. PASS
  • Issue 2 - Reserve Membership - eliminates the category of membership called Reserve Membership. PASS
  • Issue 3 - Friend of Optimist - places the Friend of Optimist member as a category of membership and then exempts the category from club board of directors' actions. PASS
  • Issue 4 - District Secretary/Treasurer - removes the restriction adopted at the 2016 Optimist International Convention that an individual may not serve as District Secretary/Treasurer for more than three consecutive years. FAIL
  • Issue 5 - presented with 100% consensus of the delegation - Indemnification of officers - requires written proof that an individual or agent is acting on behalf of Optimist International and/or an Optimist Club. PASS 
Immediate Past International President Dave Bruns was recognized by the Board of Directors for his service, but not before he had the opportunity to recognize eighteen District Governors who earned the Distinguished Governor recognition in 2015-2016. Vice Presidents Mark Clausson and Mark Harris were also recognized for highest percentage regional growth and new club building.

Nick Prillaman, International President-designate, took the stage and presented his introductory speech. Telling a story that went from his childhood to today, he proclaimed that Optimists are heroes, something that we will certainly learn more about in the 2017-2018 administrative year that begins October 1, 2017. 

Finally, the assembly looked to the future as it was announced that Rebecca Butler Mona was selected as President-elect. She will become Optimist International President on October 1, 2018.

Photo courtesy of Rebecca Butler-Mona via Facebook.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

The Optimist International Convention takes place this week

The 99th Annual Optimist International Convention will launch this week, July 6-8, 2017, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. About 1,000 Optimist Club members will attend and lend their voices to the governance of the organization.

On the schedule are learning sessions for club and district officers, committee chairs, and general members and the business sessions which honor past leaders and introduce future leaders. Additionally, all attendees will meet with other Optimist Club members for the camaraderie and inspiration of sharing our mutual cause of optimism.

Four amendments to the Optimist International bylaws will be considered:

  • Issue 1 - Dues and Fees - simplifies language, emphasizes policy, and changes the tier 1, 2, and 3 countries to developing and non-developing countries.
  • Issue 2 - Reserve Membership - eliminates the category of membership called Reserve Membership.
  • Issue 3 - Friend of Optimist - places the Friend of Optimist member as a category of membership and then exempts the category from club board of directors' actions.
  • Issue 4 - District Secretary/Treasurer - removes the restriction adopted at the 2016 Optimist International Convention that an individual may not serve as District Secretary/Treasurer for more than three consecutive years. 
Some events will be streamed live from the convention including the Optimist International Board of Directors meeting, July 5, 2017; the Opening Ceremonies, July 6, 2017, and the Business Sessions, July 7 and 8, 2017.

Watch online at this link.

See the full convention program at this link. 

Twenty PNW District Optimist Club members are pre-registered to attend including Ben DeRemer who has been selected as part of the Leadership Academy.  Be sure to talk to them about their experience and find out what they've learned that will help Optimist Clubs be more successful in our local communities and region.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Hillsboro Optimist Club hosts PNW District Optimist Junior Golf Championship qualifier

pnw optimist golf
The Hillsboro Optimist Club hosts the PNW District Junior
Golf Championship Tournament in the United States where junior golfers have the opportunity to qualify for The Optimist, one of the largest international tournaments for children through age 18.

The tournament was held at the Forest Hills Golf Course in Forest Grove, Oregon on May 20, 2017. Jack Thornton reports, "We had great weather and a great field."

The results follow: 
pnw optimist golf
Boys 16-18
Q 73 17 Mathew Werner
83 17 Dylan Adams
Q 75 18 Atlas Asaro
Q 69 17 Keith Lobis
Q 77 17 Casey Cameron

Boys 14-15
Q 77 14 Andrew Benhardt

pnw optimist golfBoys 12-13
91 13 Arthur Venderby

Girls 15-18
Q 82 15 Olivia Venderby
93 17 Melia Nordberg
Q 83 15 Elli Gordon

Girls 13-14
Q 86 14 Natalie Gregory
Q 77 14 Elise Deschane

Girls 10-12
98 10 Natalie Ten
Q 97 12 Jade Gruher
Q 89 12 Emily Song

The Hillsboro Optimist Club stepped-up to host the tournament in 2007 and have worked to send more junior golfers to the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships tournament in Florida since that time. 

The PNW District, unfortunately, does not include the tournament in its annual budget. 

This year, a number of local businesses and individuals were hole sponsors and tournament sponsors, providing the cash needed to support the tournament and give the opportunity for golfers to advance. 

The Beaverton Optimist Club joined in as a Silver Sponsor. 

Many thanks to the Hillsboro Optimist Club for their ongoing support of this important Optimist International program. 

Photos courtesy of Jack Thornton. 

pnw optimist junior golf

Monday, June 19, 2017

Turn leads into new members for the Optimist Club

When surveyed, Optimist Clubs often say they need three things. What are they?
  • Help manning favorite projects
  • Money
  • Advertising
It may occur to most that these three things are accomplished when an Optimist Club adds members. That is why a membership recruitment and retention program are necessary for any membership organization. 

Members are the lifeblood of the Optimist Club and Optimist International. In addition to providing the helping hands that are needed for projects, members provide word of mouth marketing to engage their friends and associates in its good deeds and together, they generate revenues - donations and fundraisers - to help the Optimist Club do even more. 

We know, however, that getting new people to join our Optimist Clubs can be challenging. That's why we like this membership recruitment tip that we saw today from the Ontario Trial Lawyers Association (OTLA): the membership prospect card.

According to the OTLA, board members are asked once per year to recommend new members for membership in the association. This gets the board members engaged in a strategic priority: membership. The OTLA staff then generates a personalized letter to invite the potential new member to join and it works, because like a successful a leads program, it connects people to people for needs that they need met. 

Individuals like personal attention. Individuals like knowing they were singled out for an honor or opportunity. Individuals, most of them at least, like to connect with others for social and service activities. They just need to be asked. 

That means the rest is up to you and your Optimist Club. Start a membership committee, create a prospect card, and get busy asking qualified individuals to share optimism by joining an Optimist Club. 

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Optimist International Oratorical World Championships schedule released

Here is the schedule for the Optimist International Oratorical Oratorical World Championships. All times are listed in Central Time Zone:

Thursday, June 15, 2017
8:30am - Southeast Region
10:00am - Middle America Region
11:15am - Great Plains Region
12:30pm - Global Region
1:30pm - Southwest Region
3:00pm - Saint Lawrence Region
4:15pm - West Coast Region

Friday, June 16, 2017
8:30am - Mid-Atlantic Region
9:30am - Northeast & Great Lakes Region
2:00pm - World Championships Contest

Watch from anywhere at www.optimist.org/stream.

PNW District Champion May Fan will compete online in the West Coast Region semifinal beginning at 4:15 p.m. CST or 2:15 p.m. PST. 

Good luck, May!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Let's send the PNW District Optimist International Oratorical Champion to St. Louis

may fan pnw district optimist clubs
May Fan 
The PNW District welcomed many students to the third quarter meeting and proclaimed three to be winners in their respective Optimist Oratorical or CCDHH contests. What's that? I thought that
Optimist International sponsored only two contests? 

Yes, it is true, Optimist International sponsors only two contests. Optimist International sponsors the Oratorical Contest that, in the PNW District, is gender neutral. This allows the first place contestant to win a $2,500 scholarship, second place to win a $1,500 scholarship and third place to win a $1,000 scholarship. The winner of this contest advances to the Optimist International Oratorical Regional and World Championship at St. Louis University.

Optimist International also sponsors the Communication Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (CCDHH) where one student who meets Optimist International guidelines for impairment may win a $2,500 scholarship at the district level only.

However, the PNW District has also decided, by vote of less than half of its Optimist Clubs, to divide the CCDHH contest into two categories, one for deaf students who sign and  one for deaf students who speak. Members and Optimist Clubs in the PNW District contribute to the second $2,500 scholarship over and above the contributions made by the Optimist International Foundation and Canadian Children's Optimist Foundation for scholarship contests.

Because the PNW District already asks for extra funding from its Optimist Clubs,  I am hesitant to put out another request. However, I've been encouraged by Phil Hansen, Vice President of the Vancouver, BC Optimist Club to share a funding request with other clubs in the PNW District.

Here is his plea:
"We are humbled as we count our blessings as we serve our youth and their families in our communities. But what is our ultimate goal? To bring out the best in everything we all do. If we do not bring out the best in ourselves first we cannot do so for others. "LIVE THE CREED," but that is only the beginning; a small but significantly important list of standards to follow in every setting of our life.
We want to give our best, and in so doing we believe that our contestants deserve to be on a level playing field, to perform at their best. Live Feed does not do them justice. We will appreciate the PNW District's financial assistance for May Fan to attend there. 
Please send information you can provide that will help May Fan, prepare for her travel as soon as possible. May Fan wants to go to St. Louis Missouri where the contest is actually held."
You may be aware that Optimist International expanded its Oratorical Contest in 2016 to become a global competition. Initially, it imagined that students might compete remotely via the internet from far away places.  In its inaugural year, many did, including the contestant from the PNW District. However, some students traveled to St. Louis to compete in person.

It appeared that the students in St. Louis had a decided advantage over the remote participants because they did not have the technical difficulties that came with the new online territory. Additionally, the students gained from meeting one another and experiencing the St. Louis University campus.

Therefore, in 2017, its second year, Optimist International encouraged its districts to send contestants to St. Louis to compete.

It appears that perhaps the PNW District administration needs some extra encouragement to make this happen.

By my estimation, sending one person to the competition would cost approximately $500.00 USD.

Please join with me in entreating the PNW District to do the right thing and allocate at least $500.00 USD for May Fan, and those who come in the years to follow, to fully compete in the Optimist International Oratorical World Championships. 

Thank you.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Vote for #ReelOptimism with the Chilliwack Optimist Club

The Optimist Club of Chilliwack, British Columbia has made the finals of the 2017 #ReelOptimism video contest. You can help them win by voting for their 30-second video here.

Optimist Clubs and individuals have until May 31, 2017 to vote for their favorite videos in the following categories:
  • Optimists in Action – Adult – a video (3:00 minutes or less) that visually illustrates the topic of optimism. Submissions by adult Clubs only.
  • Optimists in Action – Youth – a video (3:00 minutes or less) that visually illustrates the topic of optimism. Submissions by Junior Optimist (youth) Clubs only.
  • Make Optimism Go Viral – Adult – a video (45 seconds or less) that visually illustrates the topic of optimism in a humorous way. Submissions by adult Clubs only.
  • Make Optimism Go Viral – Youth – a video (45 seconds or less) that visually illustrates the topic of optimism in a humorous way. Submissions by Junior Optimist Clubs only.
  • Optimism – Public – a video (3:00 minutes or less) that visually illustrates the topic of optimism. Submissions by the public only.
Chilliwack Optimists entered in the Make Optimism Go Viral category. Watch the video below or click here to watch and vote. 

Friday, May 19, 2017

PNW Optimist Clubs recognize more outstanding students

The Oregon City Optimist Club was not the only one to celebrate outstanding youths this week. Three other Optimist Clubs shared pictures with us that we in turn share with you. Sorry, names and stories were not included, but that doesn't make them any less special!

In Hillsboro, Oregon, the Optimist Club recognized students and teachers at its annual youth appreciation event. (right) Their celebration included a Mariachi Band. See more pictures from the Hillsboro Optimist Club event here.

In Lebanon, Oregon, the Optimist Club hosted more than sixty students at its its JOYA program. (left) JOYA stands for Junior Optimist Youth Appreciation, but don't be confused; it's not a Junior Optimist Club, but rather students that the Optimist Club recognize for their positive behavior, among other things. I think this may be the biggest celebration that I've seen!

The Twin Falls, Idaho Optimist Club celebrated Youth Appreciation with the Canyon Ridge High School HAWK Award Breakfast. (right) Coordinating with the school, the Optimists recognize students for outstanding knowledge, will power, humanitarian endeavors and activities.

Congratulations to all!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Oregon City students are recognized for kindness

oregon city optimist club citizenship awards

On Saturday, May 13, 2017, I was honored to be invited and to attend the Oregon City Optimist Club's 2017 Citizenship and Youth Appreciation Awards.  Seventeen students were chosen by educators in eight schools to be recognized at the event and their teachers and administrators were on-hand to tell us just why they had earned the respect of their peers.

The stories included two common themes: kindness and service to others. Most were scholars and athletes, some were thespians and writers, and all were good citizens with perserverence, patience, enthusiasm for life recognized as positive traits.

Those recognized for their outstanding contributions to their school and community were:

  • St. John the Apostle Catholic School - Mandy Sisul and Liam Broughton
  • North Clackamas Christian High School - Eli Perse and Madison Steele
  • North Clackamas Christion Middle School - Ashlynn Kerekffy and Caleb Mattias
  • Springwater Environmental School - Izzy Hix and Paige Norton
  • Oregon City High School - Whitnie Warren and Soud Zaidan
  • Oregon City Service Learning Academy - Beatrice Owens
  • Clackamas Academy of Industrial Arts - Grace Christensen and Zane Freeman
  • Gardiner Middle School - Shay Gionson and Jesse Orozco
  • Octon Middle School - Bethany Lemmon and Katie Sterba

Joanne Truesdell, President, Clackamas Community College made a keynote presentation where she complimented each student and their parents and/or caregivers for their leadership. She explained that she had been asked to speak about the vital role of community service, but realized that just hearing the stories of those being honored was explanation enough.

"It is about your approach to life," said Truesdell. "Show up, smile and be kind. You may be too humble to believe this, but it is all about you."

"What you do, what you are being recognized for, it's not as easy as it might seem," she continued. "But push through the big projects and those things that you do every day because that's what keeps your community healthy." 

Quoting Mother Theresa, she reminded all assembled that love is vital to community. She concluded her words by saying we should all strive to achieve this goal: "When all is said and done, I have served my moment well." 

Congratulations to all students! Thanks to all the parents and teachers and kudos to the Oregon City Optimist Club for such a fine event.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Optimist International scholarship contestants wow the crowd

The PNW District - Optimist International Oratorical and CCDHH Scholarship Contests were held on May 6, 2017 at the Michael J. Fox Theatre in Burnaby, British Columbia. Twelve students advanced to this competition by winning preliminary contests at the local Optimist Club and regional Zone level.

All students spoke for four to five minutes on the topic "What the world gains from optimism." We heard that dogs make people happy, chocolate lava cake is the best dessert ever, and womens rights are human rights, among other things. All students were inspired by the topic, and in turn, inspired the viewers who had assembled to watch their performances.

Two particularly interesting phrases caught this writer's attention:
"A positive world change starts in a person's backyard."
"A world where there is hope in the present is a place where there is hope in the future."
We are pleased to announce the winners of the 2016-2017 CCDHH scholarship winners for the PNW District, each receiving a $2,500 scholarship:

Communications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (CCDHH) - signing - Jacob Gerlitz

Communications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (CCDHH) - speaking - Chastity Davies

In the Oratorical Contest, three winners were chosen, receiving $2,500, $1,500 and $1,000 scholarships respectively:

First Place: May Fan, Coquitlam Optimist Club
Second Place: Cleo Chang, Vancouver, BC Optimist Club
Third Place: Andrew Welch, Tacoma Optimist Club

Congratulations to all! And thank you to all participants. Well done, everyone.

Monday, May 1, 2017

COER in 20

pnw optimist coer
This is a friendly reminder to all Optimist Clubs. Club officer election reports (COER) are due May 20.

This annual deadline has been often overlooked; however, if you're Optimist Club is on the road to Honor Club, this year, for the first in many years, it is required again.

I can't speak to the reasoning behind adding the COER back into the mix; but I can speak to why the report is important.

Two things come to mind:

  1. The COER indicates good administrative practices and promises that leadership has been engaged for the coming year. 
  2. Reporting by May 20 allows Optimist International and the District to begin communicating with new officers in a timely manner so that they may be invited to conventions,  receive packages of information that will help them plan for their leadership year, and be included in District and International contact forms and directories. 
This post is to encourage your Optimist Club to hold its elections and report the results at www.optimistleaders.org on or before May 20. 

If your elections are held at a later time, please submit the report as soon as possible. 

Saturday, April 29, 2017

May is #OptimistsInAction month

Has your Optimist Club developed it's plan of action for May?

We hope so because May is officially 
Optimists in Action Month. 

What is Optimists in Action month?

It's a time for your Optimist Club to engage others in projects that serve your community in a positive way.

Yes, we know that you conduct many youth and community serving projects throughout the year. Perhaps you always include other groups in your activities. But at this time, especially, we want to see and hear about them!

Tag your Facebook posts with #OptimistsInAction and share your stories here so that we can help you share what being an Optimist Volunteer is all about.

Ready? Set. Action!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Hope floats at the Optimist International Convention

optimist convention
This week, the Optimist magazine was received by Optimist Club members around the world. On the back cover was this inspirational picture of what many think of when they imagine a trip to Albuquerque: the Balloon Festival.

We may not get to see the Balloon Festival in full force - it takes place in October - but when the Optimist International Convention opens on July 6-8, 2017, there will be enough hope and optimism to float a million balloons.

In addition to carrying out the business of the organization and being informed for our upcoming year, sharing optimism is what the convention is all about. Optimist Clubs come together once a year to share hope and plan for the future.

Click here to download the agenda.

Click here to make hotel reservations. 

Click here to register online. 

Early bird registration ends on May 1. Please register today to save.

Registration will be accepted online until July 5 and onsite registration will be available at that time.

Keep up to date with the 99th Annual International Convention by visiting http://optimist.org/e/member/convention1.cfm.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Tell your Optimist Club story today

pnw optimist club brochure front
Earlier this year, as part of its ongoing membership drive, the Albany Optimist Club updated its brochure. Bulletin editor Jack Towns produced the accompanying brochure to help tell the Albany Optimist Club story; that is, what it does, where it meets, and why it does what it does in the community.

pnw optimist club brochure backIt is a very straightforward format that your Optimist Club can and should follow. A club brochure helps recruit new members and is a great resource when asking businesses and individuals to make a donation to a particular cause.

Moreover, a club brochure also serves as a membership retention tool. When members see the great things they have accomplished, they know that during the year, they have made a difference and they recall the fun they had doing it. They remember why they are Optimist Volunteers.

If your club hasn't updated its brochure in a while, please do so. New pictures of new and traditional programs will energize your members and your community to do more.

Please click on the pictures to enlarge. 

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Free membership!

In about thirty days or so, high school graduation will take place around North America. Many Optimist Clubs will be involved with recognition assemblies and graduation parties, among other things. Something we hope they will also be involved with is new member recruitment.

Junior Optimist International (JOI) members will be graduating and heading to college or work after an earned summer respite. For the first time, Optimist International has made it easy for those new grads to transition into an adult Optimist Club.

For those who wish to join an Optimist Club upon high school graduation, there are no dues and no processing fees. That's right! That is free membership for a full calendar year for graduating senior JOI members.

How's that for a membership recruitment tool? <<AWESOME>> and <<EASY>> are just two words that come to mind!

If your Club has a graduating Junior Optimist senior who wishes to take advantage of this offer, contact membership@optimist.org or call 800-500-8130 ext. 226.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

An optimistic background

This may seem kind of silly, but it is true. As I scrolled through my stream on Facebook, someone that I am friends with liked this photo of one of his friends who had just updated his profile picture. As I looked at the photo of Mr. Sinclair, of course I noticed the banners. He reports that he was the guest speaker at the Hillsboro, Oregon Optimist Club meeting.

Isn't it awesome that our banners make such a statement that even non-members want to share them with others?

Your Optimist Club can share optimism by putting its banners into the scene every day.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Optimist Club hosts Youth Appreciation in Vancouver, WA

youth appreciation optimist club
Curt Scheidel and Jason Lee Middle School Honorees
The Vancouver, WA Optimist Club recently held its third annual Youth Appreciation event recognizing students from Gaiser, Curt Scheidel, and Jason Lee Middle Schools.

According to The Van-Guard bulletin editor Mary White, about 75 people joined the club at Salmon Creek United Methodist Church for the festivities that included a pizza and ice cream social as a prelude to the award presentations.

The Vancouver Optimist Club works with the middle schools to recognize students for overall citizenship. Mary reports, "This program goes beyond the academically and athletically gifted to recognize those who 'make a difference' in many ways to their schools."
optimist club youth appreciation
Gaiser Middle School Honorees

Shown in the pictures are:

  • (Top) Elizabeth Russell, Jose Orozco, Kauanoe Soares, Casey Struckmeier, Karla Velazquez and Liyu (Larry) Huang
  • (Bottom) Parker Burnett, Erin Narvasa, Cody Mowery, Aylin Mijares-Gamino, Daryna, and Justin Warner
Optimist International has promoted Youth Appreciation since 1956 as a way to recognize students for their positive behavior and contributions to society. It was once celebrated only in November; however, Optimist Clubs work with students year-round and now use the Youth Appreciation recognition awards as a way to interact with students at different times of the year.

Please click to find out more about  Optimist International Youth Appreciation programs. 

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Students speak about "What the world gains from optimism"

It's that time of year. Optimist Clubs around the world are hearing from amazing students in the Optimist International Oratorical Contest.

The students on the right recently participated in the West Tacoma Optimist Club's annual event. Listeners heard about Thomas Edison, Winston Churchill, football players, personal heroes and even the Revolutionary War as they learned about the official topic, "How the world gains from optimism." As always, it was inspiring.

Two of these students* will move forward to the Washington Zone 4 competition on April 22 where they will compete with other speakers from the Tri Cities and Vancouver Optimist Clubs for the opportunity to advance to the PNW District competition on May 5-6, 2017 in Burnaby, BC. The winning speaker in the District competition earns a $2,500 scholarship, second place $1,500 scholarship, and third place $1,000 scholarship.

From the District level, one student will advance to the Optimist International World Championships. Only the second year for the global competition, one student will compete for an addition $20,000 in scholarship prizes.

All awards are paid on request to the student's college by the Optimist International Foundation or the Canadian Children's Optimist Foundation.

Find out more about the Optimist International Oratorical World Championship scholarship contest at this link.

*To comply with Optimist International contest rules, the names of the students are not published to maintain anonymity as they progress through the event.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

The Optimist qualifiers are scheduled for the Pacific Northwest Optimist Clubs

junior golf optimist international pnw district

It's spring! The grass is getting greener, the sun is setting later, and everyone wants to be outside. For some, outside means on the golf course and those are the folks this post is written for. If your Optimist Club likes golf or if you know some talented young golfers or even some who are just getting started with the game, we want you to know that there are two opportunities for junior golfers to qualify for the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships in the Pacific Northwest.

The first tournament will take place in Canada. Hosted by Tournament Director Harry White and the Vancouver Optimist Club through the Junior Linkster Program, the qualifier is scheduled as follows:

Date: April 30, 2017
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
Golf Course: Langara Golf Club
Age Divisions Offered: BOYS 10-11, 12-13, 14-15, 16-18 & GIRLS 10-12, 13-14, 15-18
Registration Fee: $75.00 Cdn.
Register online at the Junior Linkster Tour Canada page.

The second tournament is in the United States. Hosted by Tournament Director Al Young and the Hillsboro Optimist Club, the qualifier is scheduled as follows:

Date: May 20, 2017
Location: Cornelius, Oregon
Golf Course: Forest Hills Golf Course
Age Divisions Offered: BOYS 10-11, 12-13, 14-15, 16-18 & GIRLS 10-12, 13-14, 15-18
Registration Fee: $50.00 US
Register online at the US PNW Northwest District Qualifier page.

Winning players in the top age categories are eligible to move forward to the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships at the PGA National Resort & Spa, Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Click to learn more about this world class event welcoming more than 600 junior golfers from 40 nations. 

Friday, March 24, 2017

Communicate, communicate, communicate

The top 5 reasons leaders don't communicate by Sherry Scott
On the Experience Optimism website, I have commented about the communication tactics of Optimist International many times. I fully believe that it could communicate more effectively with the members of the Optimist Clubs that make up the organization.

Specifically, it has a habit of sharing some information only with district leaders in the hopes that the information will trickle down as needed. Once someone is no longer in a leadership position, the information pipeline stops. The disappointment with this model is twofold:
  • the information does not trickle down in an effective manner
  • when it does trickle down, most information is prescriptive and does not engage members in the decision-making process
Plus, with the annually-imposed stop and start date of September 30 and October 1, it is as if one day you're in, and the next day you're out. Or is it? I've come to realize that perhaps, sometimes, one is never in the communication loop at all.

Some may have noticed that this administrative year has been especially non-communicative. It seems that very little information has trickled down to our clubs because as a club president, I have yet to see a district bulletin or even an email message from the governor. Almost six months have passed and while I know to go to the district website for information and meeting registration, I'm especially disillusioned to see that there is nothing listed, as of this writing, for the 3rd and 4th quarter district meetings, no minutes from the first quarter meeting, no financial reports, and no district goals or expections, among other things.

Districts have two purposes in Optimist International: to help Optimist Clubs succeed and to help Optimist International grow. Optimist International President Jim Kondrasuk has bundled the two purposes together this year by declaring it to be the Year of the Honor Club. When an Optimist Club earns Honor Club recognition, it has availed itself of the services from Optimist International and its District to host effective programs and recruit and retain members. Without communication, we don't know the specifics of the programs for the year including how to involve our youth contestants in the International Scholarship programs. Or, for instance, do you realize that Optimist International is awarding $500 each quarter for membership recruitment? 

Communication is crucial to success. Moreover, communication is a key that brings satisfaction to our decisions, including the decision to be part of an Optimist Club. In an article written for the Institute of Public Relations, Sherry Scott identified the top 5 reasons that leaders don't communicate as:

  1. The business strategy is complex
  2. They are uncomfortable with messiness
  3. Someone might ask a question they don't know the answer to
  4. They view their "goal" as communicator as delivering information, not hosting a conversation
  5. They don't want to deliver bad news

If I relate these to Optimist International, and more specifically to the governors of each of its 49 districts, I offer the following line item rebuttal:

  1. Honor Club is the business strategy 
  2. The business strategy, Honor Club, is about as straightforward as it gets
  3. Don't know the answer? I'll find out and get back to you is an answer
  4. Any information would be helpful and we can work on the rest if one is open to the ideas that others may have
  5. We can't fix the problems or celebrate the successes if we don't know about them

This year marks 30 years that I have been a member of an Optimist Club and over the years I have watched club presidents, district leaders, and international leaders approach their roles with various styles. The most successful are the ones who communicate their goals, restate their goals, work toward their goals at every turn, and monitor progress, reviewing it with others all along the way.

Some do that by creating, following and reporting on a published strategic plan. Although some might want to do more during their leadership term, I suggest that Honor Club is the baseline. Once a leader starts communicating that, the rest of the story to be communicated will fall into place.

Need help developing a communications plan? Contact Linda Vaughtpublic relations communicator at Experience Optimism.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Why not NOW?

NOW is the acronym for New Optimists Welcome, a long-standing membership development program for Optimist Clubs. For as long as I can remember, Optimist Clubs have sponsored NOW activities for membership recruitment.


The NOW concept is simple - Your Optimist Club invites a group of prospective new members to a single event, explains what the Optimist Club is and what it does in the community, and then asks those assembled to join. When one person says yes, the group dynamics emboldens others to join as well.

Over the years, it has proved to be quite effective; however, it is important to follow the guidelines. Straying far from the recipe can lead to poor results as potential members become lost in the program delivery.

Here's what to do for a successful NOW program:

  • Set the location, date and time of the event - allow ample time for invitations, but not too long for enthusiasm to wane. Three to four weeks in advance seems about right. 
  • Identify potential new members
  • Send a letter to each prospective new member inviting them to the event
  • Follow-up by phone and email to remind invitees to attend
  • At the event, serve a meal, appetizers, desserts, drinks, or the like in order to allow time for networking
  • Begin the presentation on time
  • Show and tell about the Optimist Club's programs in short, no more than three-minute stories
  • Have a closer wrap up the stories, explain the dues and fees, share a personal testimony, and ASK for the sale
  • Have applications already at the tables, within reach, with Optimist Club members available to help the potential new member complete them NOW
  • Raise hands and voices when someone joins so that others catch the wave of excitement and join as well
  • Follow-up after the event with those who don't join at the event to extend the New Optimist Welcome pitch
  • Click here for the NOW brochure from Optimist International. 

The entire activity should be approximately one to one and one half hours long. It's important to respect your attendees time and to offer them value for their attendance. Networking and learning about something good in their community are benefits for small business owners and the efficient timeline allows them to move on to their next appointment in a timely manner. Such a first impression will encourage busy, career-minded individuals to give your Optimist Club a try.

NOW all you need to do is give them the opportunity to join an Optimist Club.

Friday, March 17, 2017

It's the Year of the Honor Club

pnw optimist clubs honor club
honor club goal setting

Optimist International President Jim Kondrasuk has declared the 2016-2017 administrative year to be the Year of the Honor Club.

What's this? Isn't every year the year of the Honor Club?

Each year, less than 25% of all Optimist Clubs earn the Honor Club recognition, so that means even fewer go on to receive the Distinguished Club designation. We can do better than that!

Clubs that meet the Honor Club designation have completed the minimum steps to ensure their Optimist Club is healthy and growing to serve future generations. Clubs that earn the Distinguished Club designation have served not only their club and community, but they have also expanded the reach of Optimist International by starting a new Optimist Club or adding fifteen or more new members to their club, equivalent to starting a new Optimist Club.

In an effort to encourage more Optimist Clubs to seek the best in administration, community service and growth, President Jim created a Goal Setting Plan for 2016-2017. In case this is the first time that you have seen this plan, be assured, March is as good a time to get started as October. There's plenty of time to make your Optimist Club an Honor Club.

Click on the pictures to enlarge and print. Here are the eight steps to Honor Club:
  • Complete three or more service projects each year 
  • Complete the President’s Pride Report and Club Officer-Elect Form 
  • Recognize a Club member or local community individual 
  • Grow Club by Net of +3 in membership
  • Appoint a Club Foundation Representative and make a non-restricted contribution to the OIF or CCOF 
  • Conduct a Membership Recruitment/Drive such as a NOW Program 
  • Club President or Club President-Elect (or two Designees) attend District Convention (or two other District meetings/conferences) 
  • Be current on District and OI Dues and Fees
Add one more step and be a Distinguished Optimist Club:
  • Add Net + 15 in membership OR Build one or more new Clubs OR 
  • Increase by Net + 8 and build two or more JOOI Club
Please do your part to make certain that your Optimist Club is an Honor Club.  

Together we can make our communities and our organization healthy, vital and brimming with optimism. Together we can. 

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