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Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Ben DeRemer takes to the road

ben deremer pnw optimist clubs
Governor-elect Ben DeRemer has spent the better part of two months visiting Optimist Clubs in the PNW District-Optimist International. He's shown here with Roger Davidson, President-of-Record, West Tacoma Optimist Club.

Ben has been to Idaho, Washington, and British Columbia, and will soon, if he hasn't already, return to his home state of Oregon for the final series of visits.

The purpose of the visits is to get to know the Optimist Clubs better, including people and projects. In addition, he has recently sent surveys to all club presidents and secretary-treasurers in an effort to crowd-source information that will help the district write a strategic plan.

Ben understands there are challenges facing Optimist Clubs, like all service clubs, and he has reached out to the PNW Kiwanis District for insight. He's also sharing information that he gathers with Harvard professor and author Robert D. Putnam, known for Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community.

When Ben takes office October 1, 2018, he will be the youngest governor to ever serve the PNW District, and perhaps, with the analysis he is performing, the most strategic. I hope all clubs will join me as we look forward with optimism to a year of growth.



Saturday, April 14, 2018

Membership retention and recruitment tip #56: Offer a reward.

Membership retention and recruitment tip #56: Offer a reward. 
membership pnw optimist clubs

Sitting at a stoplight, I saw a sign on the car wash next to me that read, “Join the club.” With a smile on my face, I thought, don’t they know that it’s hard to get people to join a club? 

Then I thought, no wonder people don’t want to join a club, they are confused about what it means to join one. A car wash club is a purchase, whereas a service club means joining with other people for fellowship and volunteer opportunities.

And then as a last thought, I wondered, what does this car wash know about membership that I don’t know? 

The answer was actually pretty clear: As a member of the car wash club, you could wash your car every day for $1 per day, at multiple locations, hassle-free, with no contracts and automatic billing to make the transaction super-simple. The car wash club member was rewarded with a clean car and savings for their loyalty.

What can an Optimist Club learn from this example? People are not afraid to make to make a commitment, they just need to see the reward. It can be difficult to explain that fellowship is the reward for joining an Optimist Club. Perhaps instead we should offer something tangible like a club shirt or a free online listing for a member's business. The reward should relate to the image of the club in the community and help the new or veteran member and the Optimist Club to be recognized a positive force for good. 

Reward your members and they'll continue their investment in your club. 

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Tee-it up for Optimist Junior Golf

For Optimist Clubs, the Spring season brings Easter egg hunts, scholarship contests, youth appreciation activities, and so much more, including junior golf. The PNW District-Optimist International is fortunate to have two separate qualifying tournaments for the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships, one in Canada and one in the US.

pnw optimist clubs vancouver bc junior golfThe first takes place this month, April 22, 2018, at King's Link Golf Course, Ladner, British Columbia. Coordinated with the help of the Vancouver, BC Optimist Club, it is part of the Junior Linkster Tour, and non-members are welcome to participate. Tour members registration fee is $75 and non-members fee is $85.00. For more information, contact Mike Riske.

In the US, the Hillsboro, Oregon Optimist Club organizes the qualifying tournament. It will be held May 19, Forest Hills Golf Course, Cornelius, Oregon. The registration fee is $50. More information is available from tournament director Al Young.

pnw optimist clubs hillsboro junior golf


Both tournaments welcome boys and girls in the following divisions: Boys 10-11, 12-13, 14-15, 16-18; and Girls 10-12, 13-14, 15-18. In order to be eligible, the golfer must not turn 19 on or before August 1, 2018. Any golfer who has attended college is no longer considered a junior golfer and is not eligible to participate. 

There are a limited number of golfers in each division who will advance to the international championships provided they shoot the minimum qualifying score. Financial support to attend the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships will be advised by the tournament director. 

The Optimist International Junior Golf Championships will take place July 17-August 1, 2018, PGA National Resort and Spa, Palm Beach Gardens, US. Find out all about THE OPTIMIST, with more than 600 international junior golfers competing each year. 


Photo credit: (top) Michelle Fedosoff, (bottom) Jack Thornton


Thursday, April 5, 2018

At the parade with the Hillsboro Optimist Club

This is a short post, with an even shorter video, that shows off just one of the many different things that an Optimist Club might do.

The Hillsboro Optimist Club volunteers as support and security for several different events in their hometown. They monitor the Tuesday and Saturday Markets to be certain people aren't walking away with open bottles, among other things, and they provide crowd control at many local parades.

At the most recent parade on St. Patrick's Day, they augmented their support with a Monster Truck display. Decked out in green, the video shows the trucks with the Hillsboro Optimist Club banners proudly leading the way.

Thanks to Jack Thornton for the photos.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Six months to Honor Club

March 31 marked the midpoint of the Optimist Club and Optimist International administrative year. It's a good time to track your Optimist Club's progress toward being an Honor Club.

Each year, Optimist Club presidents set out to make a difference in their club and community by producing the best programs and conducting the best projects. To do so requires people, money, creativity, and passion. To do so well also requires some administrative duties.

For as long as I can remember, and that's over thirty years now, Optimist Clubs have been working their way to Honor Club as a way to memorialize their annual achievements.

When an Optimist Club earns the Honor Club recognition, it meets all the criteria of being relevant and enduring in its community and we have hope that its work will continue on for many years to come.

Please click on the picture to enlarge and download and monitor your Optimist Club's path to success.

Here are the eight steps to Honor Club:
  • Complete three or more service projects each year 
  • Complete the Club (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. There are still six months to make it happen!