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Rotary Club of Thunder Bay - Port Arthur

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Rotary Making a Difference

Port Arthur Rotary’s Annual Report from 2017-18



Click the link below to see a selected list of the local community projects benefitted over the last four years.


2014-2017 Port Arthur Rotary Community Allocations Info 



2018 Rotary Radio Days - Information and order form:

2018 Rotary Radio Days Order Form




Click to learn more about The Rotary Foundation and download donation forms.




At Our Club August 14, 2018


President Warren Philp chaired a well attended meeting today (including several guests/prospective members), anxious no doubt to get in on the membership drive discussion.  Warren is pictured (R) with Past-President Kevin Holloway (L), both working on elements of membership and public relations development through our website, "Club-runner" through our District 5580, and other marketing, social networking and face to face strategies. Kevin presented a topical follow-up on the Field of Greens-Salvation Army project, specifically on the transitioning of the apple orchard trees from the SA site on Cumberland St to the Tapiola site off Government Rd, where the apple produce will be welcomed by the RFDA (one of our many partners in Service). This presentation included video and aerial of the site and the remarkable feat of numerous surviving trees, some already laden with apples (despite the trauma of transplanting and the hot weather). President Philp then outlined the basics of the Board 3 year Membership drive, based on consultations both internally within the club and via professional advice. The members and guests were made aware of the many facets of this high priority direction for the club.  Immediate Past-Presidents Brenda Winter and Bob Tomlinson also provided an update on the Wilderness Discovery Camp project, one of TB Rotary clubs premier service obligations. This huge challenge is starting to see real progress as summer winds down. The clubs had a fine tour this past weekend of the WDC site. Members are still encouraged to pull up their sleeves going forward this month.


At Our Club August 7, 2018



The club had the pleasure of hearing a dynamic a passionate presentation today by Tracie Smith, Senior Director: Communications, Indigenous Affairs and Engagement, at Thunder Bay District Regional Hospital.
Sub-titled "Your Hospital-our Commitment to Indigenous Health", the address comprehensively covered the demographic and numerous health care challenges of the large population of Anishinabek people in NWO (20% of the general population), many living in remote isolated communities. The realities are stark and Tracie covered the entire gamut.
The history dating back to the colonialization period was reviewed, as was the challenge of economics in a vast geographical territory and the sad legacy of the Indian Act, residential schools on down the line.
Urgently needed: awareness, education and trust and respect; all huge requirements to move forward.
Tracie then outlined the plethora of fine programming at the hospital under her wing: Indigenous health being a top priority. Indigenous patient navigators and liaisons, culturally sensitive regional critical care, spiritual care, screening services, discharge planning (very important) were but some of the important programs extant and moving forward.
All in all, a superb and powerful, challenging address and the club thanked Ms. Smith for appearing during her vacation time.

Pictured beside Tracie are Past-President Brenda Winter (L) and President-elect Rod Morrison (R, who invited Tracie and introduced her). Dave Legge thanked the speaker.




At Our Club July 3, 2018


Plenty of celebration today(the new Rotary year has dawned) as President Brenda Winter "passed the gavel" to new President Warren Philp.


Brenda had a magnificent year and skillfully thanked all Rotarians for their constant support.  She is pictured with incoming President Warren Philp (minus the gavel but having been pinned).




Past President Vonnie Cheng then passed on her PP pin to Brenda.


The hardworking, dedicated (also a PP) Bob Tomlinson (newly retired at that) was awarded (and rightly so), Rotarian of the Year. No one toiled longer and harder at numerous Rotary projects during the year..well done Bob.

Warren Philp's leadership in the past/present/future was on full display today, with his inaugural address, certainly promising as a creative and innovative "spark" going into the new year. He introduced his new executive board, which in addition to PP Winter includes Rob Grady, Joe Wasielewski, Jim MacDonald, Jaro Kotalik, Joe McEachern, Brian Thompson as well as treasurers Leslie Savitsky and Chris Bailey. Warren has some excellent fresh ideas up his sleeve; including monthly off-site meetings, increased fellowship get- togethers, return to youth exchange, and strong participation in District 5580 affairs. Warren has just returned from the Rotary International Convention in Toronto with plenty of ammunition and insights.



New Director Jaro Kotalik presented Mo Nelson with his Paul Harris plus 3 pin for ongoing support of Rotary..very generous and appreciated Mo!!



New President Warren was welcomed, Past President Brenda saluted as well as Rotarian of the Year Bob Tomlinson and depicted also with Warren displaying his 2018-19 mantra "Be the Inspiration"






At Our Club June 26, 2018



The club was treated to a very informative tour at the Thunder Bay Bare Point water treatment plant (thanks to Rotarian organizer Jaro Kotalik).
Located on the shores of Lake Superior, the upgraded state of the art plant uses ultra-filtration membrane technology (Canadian developed) with capacity of 113 M litres. Treated water is 1000 times cleaner than inputted water from the lake (already one of the cleanest in the world). There are 5 Zenon ultrafiltration units (viewed in picture by members) a high tech monitoring hub (see pic with Dan and our tour leader Walter Turek), 5 high lift vertical turbine pumps, 4 low lift pumps and 2 back-up diesel generators. Storage is a very ample 5.8 million litres.






Members were delighted to view and be informed of this world class facility; a real gem in our midst. It was a great day on the lake too with tree swallows flying to the nesting boxes on the shoreline (LU based researchers there too). We are quite fortunate to have such amazing technology and such fine potable water (bahh-humbug to plastic bottled water).

Walter Turek (Process Engineer) and Myron Woods (Chief Operator) did a fine job welcoming and informing the group.



At Our Club June 19, 2018



Rotarian Major Lori Mitchell, Executive Director, Salvation Army Community and Residential Services, presented a thorough overview of the exciting new Journey to Life Centre on north Cumberland Street, slated to break ground this coming August and with a roughly 15 month time frame to completion.

Starting with an excellent video portraying the lives of several residents, the message was strong and clear; there is a diversity of unfortunate background circumstances leading to difficult journeys in each individual case, and requiring ultimately the (many fine) services offered by the Salvation Army. The so called "Band-Aid" methodology of providing basic shelter is not enough for the SA philosophy. SA uses an individual client centred approach to examine and work on each resident's background dynamic and formulate a workable plan. In some cases at least, a victory comes with a move to independent living quarters ( eg. in Thunder Bay, Habitat House), while in others, perhaps the satisfaction of becoming the Hostel baker.

The current building no longer suffices. "It's about time" saith Major Mitchell, as well as Joe McEachern (who with wife Barb), co-chair the capital campaign. Full details of the new building were on display (see also the photo for concept image).

Major Mitchell thanked PA Rotary for the successful Field of Greens project, inaugurated in 2009 and promised that the garden will continue in a new iteration, principally with raised container style plantings. And the apple trees have already been salvaged and reborn at the Tapiola Little Lion site for RFDA use, with new fruit trees to be planted where applicable after the construction is completed. Good planning Team SA!

The photo shows (L to R):President Brenda Winter, Joe McEachern, Major Mitchell, Barb McEachern, Gail Kromm (SA Public Relations Director and workhorse for this project over many years) and president-elect Warren Philp.
PA Rotary salutes Lori Mitchell and her team for a superb job on this huge and necessary initiative.



A delightful welcome today also to several Rotarians from District 2982 in India (with families), visiting Thunder Bay.
Holding their PA Rotary banners along with our crew are: Hasraj Jain (on left) and (District Governor) R. Vasu (on right).
Rotary is truly international in scope/service.




At Our Club June 12, 2018



The club thanked select very important members of Dougall Media staff for another very successful Rotary Radio Day. This year netted 601 ads and coordination under chair Doug Shanks with the veteran staff at 91.5 FM went very smoothly.

Pictured: top (L to R)
Andy Hubbard-ad writer, Doug Shanks PA Rotary Radio Day Chair
bottom (L to R)
PA Rotary President Brenda Winter, Darryl Bolton- radio production and voicing master; Crystal Shields-marketing manager; Anne Snell-creative director/coordinator

Port Arthur Rotary remains very indebted to Dougall Media for this unique and long standing (very essential) partnership. Thanks again


New member Arno Kalbus (pictured center with President Winter and President-elect Warren Philp (R)) gave a very entertaining, informative and
practical talk on his life..(unlike the straight forward "classification" format).
Albeit a senior manager at Bombardier for years, Arno, wife Heather McLeod and their 2 boys have a challenging but very fulfilling new life on the old family farm on Gorevale Rd.

Arno's background with Finnish mom and Estonian dad and their adventures coming to Canada was highly interesting. Good genes there.
Arno's young family have energy and great creativity and they are proudly teaching their boys about life outside of the mainstream(?) including nature and food security and origins. Arno is raising bees, chickens, plants and next up pork and maybe beef.

Arno thus calls himself a "gentleman farmer." He is fitting into Rotary very nicely and was into-ed and thanked by president Brenda Winter.






At Our Club June 5, 2018



Andrew Westerback, gave an informative presentation about the Urban Abbey. The Abbey is under the umbrella of the Anglican Mission of Canada based in Surrey, B.C. Andrew described the many challenges of undertaking a 15,000 square foot renovation. They also own the adjacent apartment building. Their projects locally include providing an environment at the Abbey for vulnerable women at risk, a prayer tower, Sunday gatherings, a twice-daily meal service in St. Patrick's Dining Room (where our meeting was held) and an artist studio. They have opened the Habit, a coffee shop to help fund their projects. They are also in process of examining the merits of opening a Shelter for Youth in the South ward. A hearty meal of soup, salad and bread was served by Abbey staff after Andrew's presentation. Urban Abbey staff, volunteers and clients were present as well.

For more information, visit





At Our Club May 29, 2018



John Hannam, Office of City Clark, City of Thunder Bay, presented today on the 2018 Municipal and School Board Elections-What's new!.

John's polished address covered the essential changes in how the municipal election is conducted. The many facets were an eye opener for most members and guests (verified by Past president Vonnie Cheng, pictured far L in her thank you).
Also pictured, besides John, are President Brenda Winter and Bill Everitt (far R) veteran election observer and administrator (who introduced Mr. Hannam).

Under the Municipal Elections Act, a new voting mechanism this year includes internet and telephone voting options. Covered also were; the Key Timelines and Dates, the Nomination Process, Contribution Restrictions, 3rd Party Advertising, and tips on becoming a candidate.

The club is indebted to John for his very informative session with us.





At Our Club May 22, 2018



Mark St Cyr presented to the club today on his unique family/personal perspective with Wilderness Discovery Handicapable Centre. A family battle with renal failure led him to become a strong proponent of the "hidden gem" camp on Lake Shebandowan. Mark's "renal family camp" of the 2010 era was an epiphany for handicapped people of all stripes, because of it's beauty on the lake, barrier free easy access and an equal opportunity for many folks to enjoy nature and relaxed interaction with others of common ilk. The renal failure clients were succeeded by others such as U.S. military veterans (handicapped) and a video clearly demonstrated their enjoyment and "joy."
With the new management consortium that involves the Rotary clubs of this area under the leadership of Bob Hookham (pictured far R, alongside Mark St. Cyr-centre, PA Rotary President Brenda Winter and President-elect Warren Philp-far L), getting into high gear with weekly work teams, the talk today was at an opportune moment.

The positive energy from Mark St Cyr was appreciated. Thanks Mark and best wishes going forward to all involved.





At Our Club May 15, 2018


Rob Grady presented distinguished student Youth and Service Awards today to outstanding young leaders from four Port Arthur High Schools. Their achievements to date in volunteerism, academics and all round skills were duly noted and celebrated. May is Rotary International Youth Service month.

Pictured (along in each case with Rob Grady) with certificates:


(L to R): Aleksi Luoma (strongly supporting clean water for First Nations), Sarah Tribe, KIana Naser,Autumn Ziebarth with teacher Zelka Black (congrats all)


(L to R): Alyssa Lahti, Carly Martin (984.5 community hours!), Tierza Wilson with teacher Russell Johnston (and RG). Congrats all.


(L to R): Jordan Erickson, Jessica Hayes (the songbird!) with teacher Leanne Joseph. (absent recipients: Olivia Luhtala, and Ryan Johnson. Congrats all !


(L to R): Connor MacLeod, Summer Jackson-Storm (animal rights warrior) with teacher Melanye D'Amours

Additionally we had a welcome surprise return visit from 5580 District Governor Debra Warner who thanked the club for its contributions to the recent District Conference. She is pictured (far R) with President Brenda Winter, Assistant DG Sandy Lychowyd, and President -elect Warren Philp.
Plenty to celebrate with this conference results.





At Our Club May 8 2018



Debbie Zweep, Executive Director of Faye Peterson Transition House, presented today a comprehensive overview of the important topic of Violence Against Women and the role of the organization in sheltering, advising, counselling its many clients including all forms of advocacy, outreach, education and support.

Women abuse continues to be a big challenge in Thunder Bay, verified by high rates of domestic violence and very high recidivism rates..(figures supplied). Some insight into the root causation was provided. The answers and scope of the problem are sobering.

The tools for understanding and dealing with these issues were reviewed. The "Cycle of Violence" was explained.

Value for Money was brought home..suggesting chronic underfunding but exemplary fiduciary programming.

The attentive audience had many questions, all handled expertly by Ms Zweep.

She was introduced by Liz Laughton and thanked by Rod Morrison, President-elect-elect (pictured on right along with Debbie-centre and Warren Philp, President -elect on left). The club is indebted for bringing this challenge to our attention.





At Our Club April 17, 2018



Today's guests were: Sandra Albertson, Director of Community Impact, United Way Thunder Bay (pictured right-centre) and Sage Laliberte,Indigenous Liaison Intern, Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation-United Way Thunder Bay (centre). They both presented on the important issue in Thunder Bay of racism and discrimination, being addressed by United Way Thunder Bay. The community report on Racism and Discrimination based on a poll of 1640 residents for United Way clearly confirmed the extent of this problem and made recommendations for mitigation: number one solution being improved public education (including "myth busting"). Ms Laliberte presented on her work coordinating the program "Diversity Counts,' involving different youth groups (ages 14-24) with some funding grants. Also on deck is the "Philanthropic Declaration of Action" to assist with the overall mission of creating change with a full community effort. Plenty to ponder by these folks.

They were introduced (a pleasure and a privilege) by Rod Morrison (far right) and thanked by PA Rotary club President-elect Warren Philp (far left). President Brenda Winter presided (centre-left).



At Our Club May 1, 2018




At today's meeting, President Brenda Winter reviewed the great success story of the District 5580 Conference, held in Thunder Bay this past weekend. There was much to celebrate, and many rewards accruing to the cooperation of the 4 local clubs in welcoming the Rotarians coming from a long way away. Attendance at around 300 was very gratifying.

The volunteers from the Port Arthur Club were feted today as well they should be; countless hours put in with great determination and good cheer. There was consensus that the 5580 conference was one of the very best in recent times. Particularly outstanding were the guest speakers, and the exchange students. Exciting project work within the district carries on.

A plethora of celebratory photos are available on the Rotary Facebook website.

Pictured here are just two: our very own Krystal Logozzo- Daniele, Master of Ceremonies (superb job!), and one of the inbound exchange students explaining the value of his experience, all the way from Morocco!!
Rotary pride was felt today and the energy for Service going forward very palpable.



At Our Club April 24, 2018



The meeting today was held at the Marina Baggage Building and was primarily meant for fellowship.

Entertaining in fine fettle was the band Dusty Roads, (see rather dusty photo), featuring delightful favourites and sing song with (left to right): Dave Silliman (electric cello), Brian Thompson (mandolin and bodhran), Rob Grady (guitar and shakers), and Dave Gibb (guitar)..all doing vocals.

Members very much enjoy the musicianship of multiple Rotarians.

Much more of the above is forthcoming at the District 5580 Conference this week here in Thunder Bay.



Also today, the club heard an update from our Rotaract club President Hilary MacDougall, accompanied by club member Amy Osmulski (Amy pictured on left, Hilary on right). We are delighted with the Rotaract involvement in Service in this community. Keep it up girls.




At Our Club April 17, 2018



Today's guests were: Sandra Albertson, Director of Community Impact, United Way Thunder Bay (pictured right-centre) and Sage Laliberte,Indigenous Liaison Intern, Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation-United Way Thunder Bay (centre). They both presented on the important issue in Thunder Bay of racism and discrimination, being addressed by United Way Thunder Bay. The community report on Racism and Discrimination based on a poll of 1640 residents for United Way clearly confirmed the extent of this problem and made recommendations for mitigation: number one solution being improved public education (including "myth busting"). Ms Laliberte presented on her work coordinating the program "Diversity Counts,' involving different youth groups (ages 14-24) with some funding grants. Also on deck is the "Philanthropic Declaration of Action" to assist with the overall mission of creating change with a full community effort. Plenty to ponder by these folks.

They were introduced (a pleasure and a privilege) by Rod Morrison (far right) and thanked by PA Rotary club President-elect Warren Philp (far left). President Brenda Winter presided (centre-left).



At Our Club April 10, 2018



April is Rotary Maternal and Child Care month and the club heard a splendid presentation today from Dr. Ranjit Baboolal, pediatrician (very well acclaimed in Thunder Bay): clinician and also assistant Professor at NOSM (and also U. of T).

His very progressive ideas addressed the biomedical effects of stress events (various sources) on a generational basis in the pediatric population, focussed on the Thunder Bay area. Environmental stressors (poverty and drugs being just some examples) have a profound effect on the developing brain and psyche of many kids. Dr. Baboolal is a strong advocate for a holistic "community pediatrician " model/approach in tackling these huge issues. There is room for improvement in access, continuity of service, and overall coherence involving the child, social and school agencies and the medical community.
Dr. Baboolal is a most welcome addition to the medical community. It is most fortunate that he and family have taken and embraced the challenge.

He is pictured on the left beside his wife Gillian and President Brenda Winter and President-elect Warren Philp (left to right).. 



At Our Club March 27, 2018



The club celebrated its partnership with St. James Elementary School, with this off-site meeting.
Thanks to Elaine Oades and her staff for hosting us....and the students and musicians Rob Grady and Brian Thompson who provided the entertainment (see photo). Benefits from the project were reviewed by Bill Everitt.

Additionally we welcomed newly inducted member Arno Kalbus. Arno is pictured beside spouse Heather McLeodm, flanked on left by Laurie T







At Our Club March 13, 2018



The Honorable Patty Hajdu, MP Thunder Bay-Superior North, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, returned to the club for a comprehensive update on the myriad activities of the federal government including the 2018 Budget.

She was introduced by her old high school principle Art Warwick (fond memories) and thanked eloquently by Colin Bruce.
She is pictured here flanked by President Brenda Winter (right) and President-elect Warren Philp (left). TB Media were on hand and more reporting is anticipated.

The presentation addressed all of the highlights of the recent budget announcement with several key philosophical and social policy directions. The term "good social policy is good fiscal policy" came up twice. Measures in the area of investments in gender equalization, science and research, partnerships with indigenous peoples (our club is looking at contributing here), energy, forest productivity, FedNor, the Canada Child Benefit (indexed grants), dedicated father parental leave (which would balance the load for women), and skills/training funding, were all covered. She reaffirms that "education is the great leveller."

Her roots in Thunder Bay include a strong belief in proper housing for the disadvantaged, and she asked us to stay tuned for the new national Housing Strategy.

For Minister Hajdu, the goal is also that "everybody sees themselves as a having a critical part to play in this country."

After a strong but brief Q and A period, Minister Hajdu was thanked by appreciative club members.



At Our Club March 5, 2018

Celebrating Rotaract's 50th year anniversary , Club President (in Thunder Bay) Hilary MacDougall attended with her colleagues as pictured:


From left to right:
Maya Ranta, Andraya Colistro, Hilary Mac Dougall, Tayfar Alarie, Catherine Kibiuk, and Malaravan Balanchandran. PA Rotary is delighted to have these leaders as part of the Rotary service team, and we will hear a presentation from them in due course. Thanks for your hard work.



At Our Club Feb 27, 2018



The club welcomed Carol Voth, Board Member with the MS Society of Canada-Lake Superior and District Chapter as guest speaker today.

Carol commenced with a description of multiple sclerosis...what it is: an autoimmune disease affecting the myelin sheaths covering nerves..disrupting nerve transmission (in a following video, a patient described it as "think of the spine as a highway..MS creates roadblocks).
Essentially cause is unknown with certainty and there is no cure. It is very common in Canada..highest rate in the world and common neurologic disorder of young adults (females predominant). Of the 4 types,, relapsing-remitting is most common. Progressive type is most sever and there is no major therapy.

Carol went on to discuss the MS Society Programs and Client Services, areas of Research and promise of some new drug therapies.
How to Get Involved? She offered a number of good thoughts.
She was introduced by Laurie Tulloch (inveterate supporter of MS work) seen on far right, and thanked by Leslie Savitsky (beside Laurie). Carol is left of centre, flanked by President Brenda Winter.



Also today the PA Rotary annual Carol Sing at St Paul's church brought in over $2000 on behalf of the Christmas Cheer Fund, and Chair Dave Silliman happily presented the cheque to spokesperson Phyllis Nisbet, pictured here. Thanks to all involved in this outstanding event.



At Our Club Feb 20, 2018



Laura Kokocinski, CEO of the Northwest Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) spoke to the Club on February 20th. She outlined the responsibilities of the LHIN in Northwestern Ontario. Their region of responsibility extends from Wawa in the east to the Ontario Manitoba border in the west. Five sub-regions reside with the region as a whole. The LHIN work with 92 Health Service Providers and 20 Community Care service providers in the region to develop funding and service agreements to ensure proper delivery of service. The rolling in of responsibilities of the Community Care Access Centres in Northwestern Ontario into the LHIN occurred recently causing LHIN staff to grow from 44 employees to approximately 300.

Their work in breaking up the vast region and dealing with it systematically was recognized by the Ministry of Health when they revamped their delivery system for the Province. Similar innovative work is occurring as the Region attempts to grapple with leadership succession planning in an environment where a large number of health sector leaders are due to be retired by 2020. The LHIN has taken a leadership role in assisting with succession planning.

More information can be found at Club Member Jaro Kotalik introduced Ms. Kokocinski, pictured above. She was thanked by President Elect Warren Philp.




At Our Club Feb 13, 2018



Jame Aldridge, Vice Provost, International at Lakehead University presented today about the work he does at LU.

Aldridge came to Lakehead last year and is responsible for International Enrolment (Recruitment and Marketing) International Relations and Partnerships, the English Language Centre, Study Abroad program and LU representatives in China, South East Asia, Mexico and Canada.

Currently, there are nearly 1,300 international students attending Lakehead’s Thunder Bay and Orillia campuses. This is up from 142 in 2010-11. Countries of origin are quite diverse with the majority of students coming from China (280) and India (360). The international students on campus have an estimated economic impact on the city of Thunder Bay of nearly $13 milliion, not including tuitions.

Aldridge spoke passionately about the benefits of internationalizing our campuses and communities through enriching the learning environment for all students, increasing the appreciation for other cultures, not to mention, affecting Canada’s changing demographics and enhancing the workforce.

President and former LU Registrar Brenda Winter (on far left) who thanked the speaker is pictured with James (center) and Past President and former President of the Lakehead University Alumni Association Vonnie Cheng who introduced Aldridge.



At Our Club Feb 6, 2018



Peter Gula, Mine Manager, Goldcorp Musselwhite Mine presented today on "Goldcorp Musselwhite Mine: Making Thunder Bay its Home”

The address by Red Lake born Gula was most enlightening. Emphasis was placed on the Mine’s efforts to make Thunder Bay its home. As Peter stated, “Thunder Bay has been the hub for the mine for some time but now, there are efforts made to make Thunder Bay its home.”

Musselwhite currently has 572 full-time employees and 200 contractors involved with the operation.
At present there are 242 full-time employees from Thunder Bay (42%). Eighty per cent of all hires in 2017 (19 of 23) were from or re-located to Thunder Bay. There has been a local hire policy since June 2017.

Goldcorp Musselwhite shops local judging by the 390 companies that they do business with in the Thunder Bay area. The mine also has a strong relationship with the indigenous communities that are in the area of the mine namely: North Caribou Lake, Cat Lake, Kingfisher Lake and Wunnumin Lake.

Peter’s presentation had a heavy technical emphasis describing how the operation uses technology for mineral extraction. Much to the Club Members amazement, some mine operations are being controlled right from their offices on Alloy Drive.

Past President and Rotary Radio Days Chair Doug Shanks (on far left) who thanked the speaker is pictured with Peter (center right) and Jim McDonald (center left) who introduced Gula. Flanking the three on the far right is President Brenda Winter.

This presentation by Peter Gula from Goldcorp was greatly appreciated by the Club judging by the applause and questions that followed.




At Our Club January 30, 2018



Diane Imrie, Executive Director of the Northwestern Ontario Sports Hall of Fame, presented today on "A Proud Sports History" (for this region).

The address was a most entertaining, highly informative and (for many) somewhat nostalgic, review of the very impressive sporting legacy of the city and environs. There was a fine collection of photos showing the many teams and individuals involved, many achieving championship status and acclaim. The Hall's activities include educational programming, volunteer opportunities, the yearly "Induction" ceremony recognizing the athletes, builders and teams (49 with championships). In addition oddities and memorabilia galore were mentioned (examples..the first automated hockey clock built here; the first Peewee hockey league in Canada formed by a woman).

PA Rotary was of course included: photos of the great goalie Art ("Hunkey") Warwick, who went on to play pro in Colorado, and Laurie Tulloch of the 1959 Lakeview Lions football club.

Art (on far left) is pictured with Diane (center left) and Laurie (center right), flanked on far right by President Brenda Winter (figure-skating champ??)

This presentation by Diane Imrie was delightful indeed. Thank you Diane. ((donations of time, money et al gladly received).



At Our Club January 23, 2018



Port Arthur Rotary club is honoured that (our own club) past-president (1999-2000) John K. Stephenson has been at the helm as 2017-18 president of the Ontario Association of Architects. John is pictured after his very polished address (centre-right) along with Rob Graham (far left), an original mentor to John (who introduced him today), long-time friend Doug Shanks (who thanked John, centre- left) and current club president Brenda Winter.

Following a resume of his stellar career in Rotary, John spoke comprehensively on architecture in today's world (with comparisons to the past 40 years of his career). It is now very complex and certainly not just producing pretty pictures for clients. Apart from the aesthetics (what the general public is aware of), there are the many evolving technical aspects and interrelationships with the public, clients, the fellow architects and their large staffs, and the challenges of others such as "project managers." All this whilst complying with the law and the regulations applicable to this profession.

John has impressive experience in all modalities associated with the profession (also including the financial end in particular), and has many special interests such as developing positive relationships in this profession with indigenous peoples. He does use the metaphor of a maestro conducting a major symphony orchestra and bringing out all the voices.

The club members (and media) present were all invigorated by this fine presentation. We wish John good luck completing his 2nd year as president of the OAA.



At Our Club January 16, 2018



VP-Infrastructure and Planning, and Chief Financial Officer for St Josephs Care Group, Mr. Scott Potts, presented an enlightening Review and Capital Update on the big changes going at the present at St Josephs Care Group.

Mr. Potts commenced with an overview of the Strategic Plan; a four directional focus on Clients, People, Partners and the Future (2200 employees and 400 volunteers).

The current Hogarth Riverview (544 long term beds and much, much more) and St. Josephs Hospital Expansion (100,000 sq. ft, and including new specialized mental health and addiction facilities), were outlined in some detail. Decommissioning details for the old Lakehead Psychiatric Hospital were also provided.

St Josephs Care Group has long been a prime health care facility in Thunder Bay and the many awards and client satisfaction surveys confirm this.

Mr. Potts (centre right) was introduced by Rob Graham (left in the picture) and thanked by Dr. Jim Colquhoun (far right) as well as president Brenda Winter.


At Our Club January 9, 2018



Lorne Vis returned to present on life in agriculture-Thunder Bay and what a busy and fulfilling life it is; with many a challenge.  He is pictured (centre) along with friend Dave Silliman (left, who introduced Lorne) and Kevin Holloway (right, who graciously thanked Lorne).

Lorne's day typically begins at 0500h and ends very late. Primarily a dairy farmer, he, spouse and his sons epitomize the hard work ethic of days of yore. Topics dealt with today focussed on the (world class) quality control measures for his milk, impact of free trade arrangements including NAFTA (threats et al); and the family "business". The family of four are "driven" and are fine advocates for the agricultural industry (they also deal with seeds, hay and art).

This was a special event and the club is indebted to Lorne for educating and energizing us.




At Our Club January 2, 2018



Steve McCauley returned to the podium for our first meeting of 2018 for a very spirited "classification" talk, described by one member as a "perfect" such accounting. Steve included a great deal of background from London area beginnings to Toronto, to Calgary and Fort MacMurray and back to Thunder Bay (spouse Deb's homestead).

Steve had a successful career in business management with BMO, then Shell and has a strong volunteer ethos serving him well in Rotary and other humanitarian causes. To boot, he and Deb have strong family, community and activity interests.

He is pictured with President Brenda Winter (left) and Rod Morrison (President elect-elect) who thanked Steve.




At Our Club November 28, 2017 


Veteran Fort William Rotarian,( Past President )and international Rotary worker bee Jill Zachary, presented to day on the impressive Guitarrani School building project in Icla, Bolivia , completed and inaugurated in June 2017. The project was very much conceived and executed by Jill with a strong team of international parties (Mano a Mano) featuring ownership by the local community. The construction and its challenges in land-locked Bolivia at 13,000 feet altitude was substantial. The result was quite outstanding. The fine video clearly showed the joy of the community and kids benefitting.

Jill is shown centre with PA president Brenda Winter and our own international answer to Jill, Roly Turner, who graciously thanked Jill. Bravo Jill and Team Mano a Mano.




The Summer Fun Draw provided allocations to several recipient groups (here represented by Rotarians):
(Left to right: President Winter, Sandy Lychowyd -Lakehead club for MS Society, Dave Silliman-_PA Rotary for Dew Drop Inn, and Lori Mitchell- PA Rotary for Salvation Army).






Our newest member Elizabeth Laughton, inducted today, is pictured moments afterward, quite unscathed, with Doug Shanks, who read the almighty "charge." Liz was introduced to the club by her uncle, Rotarian Bob Tomlinson. Hearty congrats and welcome Liz!


At Our Club November 21, 2017 



Ministry Bee Inspector Rob Rupert provided a very entertaining AND informative (for the amateur biologists) presentation on honeybees (order hymenoptera).

The talk outlined the anatomy of the colony and beehive set-up, the reproductive physiology, commentary on ecology including verroa infestation and importance of the pollinators in this era..
Time permitted a fine overview with some question period. We could have gone on a lot further.

Rob is pictured here with introducer Dave Silliman, thanker Colin Bruce (far left) and President Brenda Winter.


At Our Club November 14, 2017 



Executive Director of the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra (TBSO), Gerald McEachern presented today on the new and exciting TBSO, reincarnated again as the crown jewel of culture in Thunder Bay (in its 57th year). Port Arthur Rotary has long supported the TBSO with funding for projects such as new timpani drums, acoustic shields, outreach education and much more through dedicated club members.

Gerald presented the "cool" and "not so cool" facts about the orchestra, with innumerable benefits to the city and music lovers; and yes numerous challenges, especially financially. TBSO is working hard to keep the music alive.

Gerald's philosophy is infectious and based on a pyramid model with education at the bottom; next, excitement and uniqueness at the pinnacle.

He was introduced by Rotarian Jeff Sampson (current VP on the TBSO Board) and thanked by supporter Dave Legge (past Board member and VP).

He is pictured (2nd right) along with Jeff Gibson, TBSO Finance Manager (also former principal French horn of the TBSO), on the far left, Jeff Sampson (second left) and President Brenda Winter (far right).



At Our Club November 7, 2017 



The club Remembrance Day service today commenced with the March of the Colour Party (Port Arthur Branch #5), Ritual of Remembrance, Last Post,, Moment of Silence, Laying of Wreath, Flanders Fields (MO Nelson) and Rouse.

Following this ceremony Dr Michel Beaulieu (no stranger to the club, from LU) and Haleigh Ridell (1st year history major at LU, who as a student at St. Ignatius high school attended the 100th year Vimy commemoration in France), spoke in depth on the history of local Thunder Bay area military in the first and second WW (extensive and underappreciated), as well as the experience of youth in visiting this important setting.

This was followed by solemn reflections around the room on the importance of remembering our veterans (living and dead) -impressive expressions from the heart.

Pictured (L to R): President Brenda Winter, Lori Mitchell, Steve McCauley, Haleigh Ridell (guest speaker), Dr Beaulieu (guest speaker) and M.O Nelson; all participants in today's program.





At Our Club Oct 31, 2017 



Ian Casey of the Canadian Ski Patrol, enlightened members today on the range of (public safety oriented) services supplied by this important charitable, not for profit, volunteer driven organization (75th anniversary this year). Ian himself extols the Service Above Self ideal and was a "rebound" Rotary exchange student to/from Germany out of the Kenora club in 1994. He is currently also an RN at the TBRHSC.

The CSP is a (certifying body) First Aid and Rescue service with many functions including risk management, school groups safety, customer relations, all provided by trained EMS and Life Support and Rescue volunteer personnel.

Mr. Casey thanked our club for recent financial support. He is pictured here (2nd on right) with club President Brenda Winter, Rob Grady (former ski-patroller) and Kevin Holloway (allocations chair).



At Our Club Oct 24, 2017 



A special treat today was a presentation of utterly delightful song and recitations of the famed humourist Stephen Leacock, by VOYAGEUR STORYTELLING (of Northern Bruce Peninsula) couple Leslie Robbins-Conway, and Paul Conway. Leslie and Paul are on the early leg of their RE-TOUR 2017 commemorating Stephen Leacock's "My Discovery of the West." (Orillia to Victoria). They are pictured with appropriate pictures along with Warren Philp (club President-elect, and Colin Bruce (past-president), also with current President Brenda Winter (seated).
The presentation was slightly foreshortened but did include the famous "My Financial Career", "Boarding House Geometry," "Unsolved Riddles Forever" (complete with Rotary chorus) and more. This was a very different and unique experience. The club wishes these talented folk great success.




The club officially welcomed transferring (from the Rotary Club of Calgary) Rotarian Steve McCauley today. Dave Legge introduced Steve, and he was charged by Colin Bruce, then welcomed officially by President Brenda Winter and the club in general. Steve has considerable Rotary experience and will be a very welcome addition to our club. He is pictured (on left) with President Winter and Past-President Colin Bruce.


At Our Club Oct 17, 2017 



Mr. Doug Murray, CEO of the Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission (CEDC) returned to the PA Rotary podium for an illuminating update on the many avenues of service to the community supported by the CEDC. (See also..

Mr. Murray's report covered the recent trends (health care dominating over manufacturing); reasonably good youth employment (more chances here for 18-25 year olds than in Toronto); results from the TB and District Entrepreneur Centre (40 business start ups); Health Services recruitment (e.g. physicians); population growth ( Northwestern Ontario static compared to Manitoba); labour trends and stats; and more, including the CEDC Strategic Plan for the next 3 years.

A healthy Q and A period followed. We hope to hear from Mr. Murray again for sure. He is pictured with today's chair and President-elect Warren Philp.




At Our Club Oct 10, 2017 



Dr. Rhonda Crocker Elacott; Executive VP for Patient Services and Chief Nursing Executive at Thunder Bay Regional Health Science Centre addressed the club today on a very wide ranging and comprehensive overview of the Vision, Mission, Philosophy and of course many services provided at TBRHSC in a very challenging health care sector especially in northwestern Ontario.

Built in 2004, the hospital serves 250,000 people in a huge area using 375 beds , 2700 staff and 7500 volunteers. The patient/family centred care model is supported by excellent technology, health care providers with the new TB Research Institute contributing.

Dr Crocker Elacott spoke extensively of the unique patient demographics and geographical challenges, the "surge capacity" and high utilization of emergency services. Also discussed was mental health, indigenous and chronic/complex health care, all making the average length of stay a daily battle; yet one that the staff are by and large managing well and focussing on a positive patient experience. The presentation was very well received indeed.

She is pictured (centre) flanked by Warren Philp (who chaired today and is President-elect, on the left) and veteran physician Dr. Jaro Kotalik.




At Our Club Oct 3, 2017 

District 5580 Governor (2017-18) Debra Warner (with soul-mate Ed Williams) were welcomed by the club today, and treated us to an outstanding overview of Rotary District 5580 and Rotary International; her philosophy and goals evident and very enthusiastically presented.



Debra is pictured (centre) with PA Club President Brenda Warner (left) and 5580 Assistant Governor Sandy Lychowyd (right, of Thunder Bay Lakehead Club).

Debra thanked our club and spoke for RI President Ian Riseley, stressing each individual Rotarian can make a difference. She then deftly explained a few of the reasons why she is a Rotarian (assisted by a fine handout).Her work internationally was evident in this segment.


She challenged all members to go out and directly ask candidates to become Rotarians and announced Mr. Riseley's challenge for every Rotarian to "Plant a Tree" by Earth Day, April 2018.
There was encouragement in several key areas as well including Membership, Foundation, World Polio Eradication and Rotary Public Image.


Debra received a well deserved round of applause for an exceptional address.




Shown also is a group picture with (left to right-Brenda Warner, Maria Hudolin, Deb Warner, Paula Timmons (PA club and a past District Governor, Sandy Lychowyd, and Roly Turner (past DG and many other roles).



Jack and Maria Hudolin of Thunder Bay PA Rotary are pictured with their good friends Debra Warner (DG) and soul-mate Ed Williams.


At Our Club Sept 26, 2017 



Today's meeting was a major celebration for Rotary with presentations of (new) Paul Harris awards and recognition of the large number of existing and past members who have donated to the worthy cause of international service under Rotary International.


There were several club members receiving Paul Harris awards today: Pritam Lamba, M.O. Nelson, Fred Baker, Martii Tenander and Brenda Winter (seen in group picture). A number of the above recipients were "multiple" Paul Harris recipients.

In addition, special Community Paul award recipients were welcomed: Erin Beagle (Roots to Harvest) and Joe Comuzzi (long standing outstanding representative of Thunder Bay and Canada in multiple spheres)



Erin Beagle is shown with Past-President Kevin Holloway.



Joe Comuzzi is pictured with club donors Jack and Maria Hudolin as well as club President Brenda Winter


At Our Club Sept 19, 2017 



Guest presentation today was by well known author and children's advocate Jean E. Pendziwol. She is pictured holding her latest novel The Light Keeper's Daughters, published around the world and to acclaim. Left is Club President Brenda Winter, then Laurie Tulloch, who thanked Jean and spoke passionately in support of the author's work on fire safety for kids. On the far right is Colin Bruce, who introduced Jean as a "literary light for northwestern Ontario" and a "unique Canadian."


Jean hails from Thunder Bay and her roots are strong here with a bounteous matrix available of persons, places, things for her writing.
Her early work was in free lance writing for magazines, then moving towards children's books with important messaging (example fire safety teaching in the acclaimed No Dragons for Tea) with excellent illustrations. Me and You and the Red Canoe is her latest in this genre (see photo).
Porphyery Island in Black Bay area is focal point for the Light Keeper's Daughters.
Literacy being so important for Rotarians, this was a very special presentation. Many thanks Jean.



At Our Club Sept 5, 2017 



Our club had a special treat today as our three recent RYLA campers did a presentation on their Crookston experience. Pictured (L to R) Faith Montfort, Emily Simonaitis and Ashley Dunning, were truly great ambassadors for the youth of Thunder Bay. Their enthusiasm was much in evidence as they described the various activities that were part of the camp – the rope challenge, ‘family’ time, volunteering at a food bank, giving out roses to strangers at Walmart capped by a meaningful keynote from runner Dick Beardsley about overcoming adversity and appreciating life to its fullest. Based on the Four Way Test and the books FISH and Seven Habits of Highly Effective Teens the camp strives to build self-confidence and leadership skills. These three young women certainly prove that it works. Thank you to Rotarian Jeff Sampson, seen here with them, for his part in recruitment and coordination of this year’s RYLA experience.


At Our Club Aug 29, 2017 

Club Allocations Chair Kevin Holloway presented the slate of recipients of monies for the 2016-17 budget year (summer). All (but one-Ian Casey of Canadian Ski patrol) attended and were feted. Each gave a brief presentation of their organization, the designated applicable project and thanked our club for it's financial support. Thanks to Kevin for a fine programme!


Pictured: (left to right):
Stacey Livitski and Julia Prinselaar (Castlegreen board member and Project Manager at Eco-Superior) for their work on "Groundbreakers" -a raingarden program at Castlegreen co-op, also involving the use of rain barrels:
Amina Abu-Bakare for her leadership with Blessings in a Back-Pack for underprivileged school kids (Rotary District grant):
Allocations Chair Kevin Holloway (a Rotary Past-president):
Charles Campbell for assistance with the Northwestern Ontario Writers Workshop (NOWW) Twenty Years on Snowshoes project::
Charmaine Cades for Team Unbreakable; a mental health running program (see earlier report re her presentation here):
Robert Jackson co-ordinator for the Northwestern Ontario Regional Science Fair; perennially supported by our club: 3 Thunder Bay students moved on to the finals.
PA Rotary president Brenda Winter (far right).
As noted, regrets from Ian Casey (Canadian Ski patrol for purchase assistance with a summer patient carrier).


The club is pleased to support all of these fine community organizations.


At Our Club Aug 22, 2017 


Aliisa Paivalainen,(( pictured with Dad (Past Rotary president) Seppo (left), Mom Janice Vauthier and (on far right) President Brenda Winter)), presented today (an encore of sorts) on her work in international relations as senior instructor at Global Emergency Group.

This company provides security training programs to a wide variety of humanitarian NGOs (Red Cross, Oxfam, Department of Defense US to name just a few) for their employees on the ground in diverse often challenging hot spots globally. She is Team leader on the US AID team preparing for overseas missions.

The Group comprehensively familiarizes workers and trains them in all aspects of security incidents..ranging from minor traffic accidents to acts of war and attacks on aid workers.
Aliisa focussed on several sobering examples, which involve detailed simulations/scenarios.
She has had considerable experience in many areas worldwide. Her training is extensive and past/present involvement in RYLA and (currently)a Calgary Rotary club serves her very well.
She was introduced by a very proud Dad (Seppo) and thanked by Lori Mitchell, describing her as very "brave." Great work Aliisa..we are delighted to hear you again!



Thunder Bay Rotary Rotaract President Hilary MacDougall returned today (pictured with VP-Michael Coccimiglio in centre, both flanked by President Brenda Winter on left and Past-President and Rotaract mentor Kevin Holloway-right).

Hilary and Michael were pleased to officially receive several articles of the organization including the charter certification, program bell, 4-Way Test and (pictured here) the Rotaract banner.
The club, newly resurrected is off to a fine start and is actively recruiting..please contact any of the above for more information). An update on meetings and activities was provided by Hilary. Very well done.



At Our Club Aug 15, 2017 


Dr. Bruce Pynn, our (very busy) oral and maxillofacial Thunder Bay surgeon, presented today on Cranio-Facial Injuries in Northwestern Ontario.

With comprehensive photographs of maxillo-facial trauma in his many past (and ongoing) patients, the stage was set for a fascinating account of his work in this highly demanding field, in this demanding geographic area. The stats from TBRHSC and his clinic are testament to the high incidence of trauma, often of domestic, accident and drug/alcohol related etiologies.

The audience appreciated his candor and dedication to this very challenging work. His work is recognized on many fronts and the Q and A period could have gone on much longer. Thanks Bruce.

He is pictured (centre) along with President Brenda Winter and Dr. Jim Colquhoun (who thanked Bruce). David Legge introduced Dr. Pynn.


At Our Club Aug 1, 2017 


Passionate independent retailer of high quality sport-wear for women in Thunder Bay, Diane Petryna, presented today on the many challenges of her industry both locally and nationally.
Owner of Take 2 Boutique (formerly Take A Hike) on Bay Street (formerly in Fort William), Diane presented a realistic and sobering picture of her business( a member of the Canada Retail Hall of Fame amongst other honours).

The challenges have been impressive and relate to many variables including changing demographics, attitudes re shopping and discount buying (as in elsewhere in town and on-line), difficulties finding and retaining staffing (quality in-store service being so important), and the ominous trending forecasts nationally involving flight of money south to the U.S. on -line, and store/mall closures across Canada.

Despite all of this there is positivity and spunk with Diane, now at it for 20 years as an independent, owing to the reality of her strong business convictions, excellent product lines and consulting advice assistance (via Skype et al).

Diane is pictured here with Rotarians Leslie Savitsky left, (who introduced Diane), Irene Kozlowski,( who thanked her) and far right President Brenda Winter,(works with Diane). It is noted that all 4 are successful women entrepreneurs.

The club thanks Diane for her fine account and wish her well in her business and community business development and volunteer activities


At Our Club July 25, 2017 


President Brenda Winter is pictured holding the ball, with her President-elect Warren Philp (Mr. Baseball TB, on right), along with Joe McEachern (right) Director for Club Fellowship.

Two general areas were covered today: 1. follow-up on our recent think-tank discussion on programming in our new Rotary year (fruitful indeed) as well as 2. presentation of the new Board of Directors: There is plenty of Service and Fellowship tasking all in good spirit. The information will be posted on our website in due course. Not only will we be working at the Murillo fall fair in support of the Wilderness camp project, but fellowship activities scheduled this summer include Border Cats baseball (see above) and sailing.



At Our Club July 18, 2017 


President Brenda Winter is pictured with President-elect Warren Philp after a fine think-tank style session today on garnering ideas for improving meeting presentations and meeting formats. Port Arthur Rotary is always receptive to new ideas and innovation for our club meetings. The new Board will have plenty of solid ammunition going forward this Rotary year. Thanks to Warren for chairing the session today.



At Our Club July 11, 2017 

Outgoing Rotary Exchange student of the past year, Owen Bai (Churchill HS) presented today a very professional account of his experience with 3 host families in Turin(o) Italy.

He is pictured here, decked out with pins in red (centre) with President Brenda Winter far L), Art Warwick (Past President and introducer), Mom Yan Yan Chen, Dad Dr. Hao Bai and (far R) the "thanker" PP Laurie Tulloch.


The year spent was highly enriching in all spheres including Italian-Canadian-Chinese cultural exchange, Rotary programming in service and volunteerism as well as great opportunities for travel. The excitement and adventure in Turin was special and the host families and schooling all outstanding.

Owen is moving on to engineering and computer science (U of California at Berkeley). He thanked PA Rotary for the great opportunity of supporting him this exchange year and answered many questions about the benefits accruing. Our club hopes to consider returning to exchange programming in a fulsome way soon.


At Our Club June 27, 2017 

Year end for Rotary and a fine send off for President Vonnie Cheng (thanks for a whole lot of hard work guiding the club Vonnie) as well as a fine beginning for new President Brenda Winter (the two are all smiles).
Vonnie thanked many in the club for their hard work and Brenda started off discussion on the results of the Fireside Chats.


In addition Vonnie announced the co-winners of Rotarian of the Year: Laurie Tulloch and Irene Kozlowski. Irene couldn't make it today, but Laurie, pictured with Vonnie was most gracious in accepting. Most deserved Laurie..the club is delighted with your dedication (and of course that of Irene).


Next we will celebrate the new Rotary year and 150th for Canada.


At Our Club June 20, 2017 


Gary Mack, Executive Director of Thunder Bay Rotary Shelter House, presented a stark but realistic picture of homelessness in Thunder Bay, along with a quite stirring over-view of the strong programming provided to assist these marginalized people. He expressed his gratitude to the TB Rotary clubs for their financial and (other) support for this important organization.

The dramatic rise in homelessness since its inception in 1980 has generated many challenges. The clients have numerous socio-cultural and health problems including psychiatric disorders, drug and alcohol abuse, hepatitis C and more. The magnitude provided by Mr. Mack is sobering. Nonetheless the (always in fund-raising mode) shelter serves 18,000 meals/snacks 24-7 at the shelter or at van city sites every month; constantly is forming partnerships with counsellors, the police, psychiatrists, social workers and lay volunteers to help out. The indigenous programming is a major focus. The managed alcohol program has international recognition. The shelter will accept intoxicated people; also women and youth and known substance abusers. Quite remarkable. The Q and A period could have gone on much longer.

Pictured are (left to right: Bonnie Moore (thanker), Mr. Gary Mack (ED), Brenda Winter (introducer), Vonnie Cheng (president) and Alexandra Calderon (development officer). The discussion was fulsome, informative and very imporrtant.




At Our Club June 6, 2017 


Well known educator, community advocate, singer, and expert oenophile/oenologist Paul Inksetter presented today on his recent trip to the mecca of fine wine France. Paul links the pleasures of fine symphonic music to fine wine..he has had a strong interest for years and his recent pilgrimage (May..the best time to go) lead him to Champagne, Burgundy, Chablis, Sancerre et al via accommodation in gites, where he and wife Penny enjoyed the people involved and the wine itself (generally the finest in the world). The talk focussed on wine tourism and it's development in France. A Power-Point picture show assisted. "Wine is the most healthful and nourishing of all beverages"-Louis Pasteur.

The presentation engendered a lively Q&A session. Paul is pictured here with President Vonnie Cheng (left) and Rob Grady (who thanked Paul) and Brian Thompson (who introduced Paul) (right centre-right). Thanks Paul..a votre sante-come back again soon for another session.



At Our Club May 30, 2017 


Thunder Bay Team Unbreakable was on display today with a presentation by Volunteer Manager Charmaine Cades (flanked by Darren Fisk on left who thanked the speaker, and Rob Smith, who chaired today's meeting..moving up the ranks quickly as sub for the president).

TB Team Unbreakable started in 2013 and is gaining traction quickly. It is a mental health running program: encouraging youth 8-18 with a variety of mental health issues to get out get into a graduated running program (13 weeks with a final community run). The overall goal is improvement in mental health with socialization and improved physical fitness. Judging by the number of returnees the positive outcomes are often sustained.

Charmaine spoke of the evolution of this barrier-free program, including funding challenges. The idea is refreshing and there was considerable interest expressed by the members. Good luck to Charmaine and her committee.



At Our Club May 23, 2017 


The proverbial "classification" talk was explored as a fresh new approach today, by new Rotarian (Rev) Rob Smith (pictured on the right beside President Vonnie Cheng and Marilyn Leiterman (who thanked Rob).

Rob has spent his whole, (very peripatetic) life striving to help people along individual pathways (where required) and doing so by refusing the
stereotyped format of whatever "job" he is doing, being retail (early on) to ministering at St. Paul's United church in Thunder Bay.

Along the way, Rob has acquired a unique passion for "doing" style. It came out today and was recognized by the Rotarians who welcome him into Rotary style service. He is very comfortable with his communities of parishioners and the general population.
 He "practices what he preaches" by keeping his feet moving, not stuck in cement and thinking outside the box. Great presentation Rob and thanks for joining PA Rotary.




At Our Club May 16, 2017 


The club thanked and honoured Dougall Media 91.5 CKPR today for their invaluable partnership with PA Rotary in the production of another successful Rotary Radio Day (2017).

Pictured alongside President Vonnie Cheng (middle) from left to right are:
 Jordan Puzzella (commercial copywriter), Crystal Shields (marketing and promotions supervisor), Daryl Bolton (producer well known to the club and who provided a fine testimonial to the late Fraser Dougall), Kaile Jaggard (a.m. radio host) and Ann Snell (old faithful- creative director); absent from CKPR with regrets: Rosa Maselj and Linda Linklater.

Laurie Tulloch provided a video thank you to all..much appreciated Laurie. This year 426 ads were sold and over $21,000 realized as a result of CKPR's generous donation on family day. Laurie Tulloch aptly deemed CKPR as "part" of PA Rotary. Over $1,000,000 has been raised over the years.





Top club ad sellers for this year were: (L to R) Dave Legge, Jim McDonald, Colin Bruce (with President Vonnie). Leslie Savitsky was in the group but unable to attend (photo: K. Holloway)


Major business contributors were feted:
Wanson Lumber, Form Architecture, Grandview Dental, Smith and Associates Insurance, PoliRentals/Econolodge/Super8



At Our Club May 9, 2017 

Rob Grady chaired today's annual Service to School and Community 2016-17, north ward high school presentations. It was another fine display of youth volunteerism/leadership, as all of these fine students attended, with bios delivered (by Rob), to the applause of club members,(one) parent and teachers:

St. Ignatius High School 


Rob (left) with: Shea Niemi, Nathanial Oriecuia, Tyanna
McNally, Ellen LaFroy and teacher Beatrice Boch.

Hammerskjold High School


Rob (left) with Selena Baxter, Kiersten Ek, Beth O'Neill, Zach Hynna and teacher Jamie Philp.

Superior CVI 


Rob (L) with Nathan Roy, Paige Tees, Alina Heino, Seth Wilson and teacher Russ Johnson.

Ecole Secondaire Catholique de La Verendrye


Rob G (L) with Anne-Marie Trottier, Michele Paradis and teacher Catherine Paquette.

Congratulations to all with best wishes for community leadership in the future.


Past-president Dave Silliman with classic Adopt A Road signage (honoring the late Glen Harris)..the club will be active again May 27th adjacent to the Field of Greens.

At Our Club May 2, 2017 


President -elect Brenda Winter presented today on a timely subject: the recent District 5580 Conference in Tower Minnesota (April 28-30th).
It was by all accounts one of the most successful (District Conference) and enjoyable in years. Testimonials from all club participants were heartfelt. Fort William and Lakehead club members were also there for the Canadian team.

Pictured are Brenda (2nd left), Doug Shanks a past-president who was big presence (he thanked Brenda for her talk), President Vonnie Cheng, and Roly Turner,( who received an ovation) as the recipient of the prestigious Service above Self Award, the highest honour in Rotary International. (outstanding and most well deserved, Roly). Our club also won 1st place for the Inter-organizational Service Award, principally for our work with St. James school, Dew Drop Inn and the Salvation Army.

Brenda outlined preliminary details on the next district conference (Maria Hudolin cited the 30th year for women in Rotary) : we in Thunder Bay are hosts at the Valhalla Inn April 26-28th, 2017. The new District Governor is Debra Warner. This conference will be "Building Bridges, Goodwill and Friendship." It will be a huge celebration.


At Our Club April 25, 2017 


Fort William Club Rotarian Bob Hookham has worked tirelessly as a lead in resuscitating the Wilderness Discovery Project Handi-Capable Centre on Lake Shebandowan for the benefit of handicapped people in our area. His presentation today won support from our club, which will be assisting (with the other 3 Canada Clubs including Nipigon), along with other service clubs.
Mr. Hookham described the history, at times quite turbulent, going back to 1951. Persistence and a Rotary style passion to help disabled people has met with success.

There is also support from other organizations. A lot of work is required and funding will be an important focus of the Canada Clubs.

Our speaker was introduced by Brenda Winter (pictured on the left), thanked by Bill Everitt (far right) and lauded by President Vonnie Cheng. The promotional display is prominently displayed. Our club congratulations Bob Hookham and many other Rotarians for this historical feat.





At Our Club April 18, 2017 


Principal percussionist with the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra, Jean-Francois (J.F. or Jeff) Breton, presented today on the life (his life to be specific) of a professional musician.

The address excelled because it was very personalized, candid and extemporaneous, without props (except the room "screen" which served as a screen for the purpose of demonstrating how an audition is held).
As timpanist (and a myriad of other instruments) with TBSO, Jeff described the great rewards of being a professional musician (in this case live acoustic in a world of digital) as well as the many challenges and stresses.
Jeff has a rewarding career with TBSO (into 11th year), and enjoys the environs very much. In the summer he can be found beautifying people's lawns as an entrepreneur and exploring the woods.

Thanks for your address J.F. and best of luck with your career and TBSO.

A brisk Q&A period ensued.

He is pictured with Robyn Beaucage (far L ) who introduced J.F. as well as President Vonnie Cheng and Dave Silliman (TBSO supporter, musician and a club past-president (far R).



At Our Club April 11, 2017 


Karl Wahl, veteran Fort William member and historian/librarian was featured guest speaker today (seen here with president Vonnie Cheng), on the topic "History of Women in Rotary."

Suffice to say, many events including a 1987 US Supreme Court ruling (obliging women to be allowed entry to the organization), eventually lead to embracing women within the world wide organization.

In our district, numerous women have become outstanding leaders, including the clubs in Thunder Bay.

Mr. Wahl was introduced by Roly Turner and thanked by 21 year member and early female president Leslie Savitsky.





At Our Club April 4, 2017 


New Rotarian Roderick (Rod) Morrison delivered a most interesting account of his personal and professional life today. 

Born and raised in Toronto , he has lived and worked in many venues across Canada and the United States; in latter years
principally in Human Resources, finishing his career at the TBRHSC.

His leadership and management skills fit well with a service club like Rotary.  The presentation was fascinating, and done without AV accompaniment.

Rod was introduced by Brenda Winter (actually more by himself) and thanked by
David Legge. Welcome to our club indeed , Rod.

The picture (credit to Leslie Savitsky) shows slim Rod in dark sweater, surrounded by President Vonnie Cheng (far L) and Brenda Winter (President-elect) and Dave Legge on right.



At Our Club March 21, 2017 


Canadian Lighthouses of Lake Superior was the topic of Paul Moralee's fine presentation today.

Paul wears many hats around Thunder Bay and Lake Superior and is passionate about the not for profit  organization (web: and email: serving as an umbrella organization representing Lake Superior Lighthouses. The overall mandate is preservation, protection and promotion of public access to Canadian Lighthouses on Lake Superior.

Paul detailed location and many interesting factoids of 4 within our immediate reach east of the Thunder Bay waterfront: TB Main at the breakwall, Trowbridge Island, Porphery, and Shaganash. Fine photography was a highlight including a very professional video with aerial shots showing the beauty, geology, flora et al. Porphery Lighthouse provides a great deal including opportunities for student volunteering, naturalists, photography, the very fine Gordon Graham ( picture) Gallery, and more.

Pictured surrounding Paul is Brenda Winter (President-elect) far left, President Vonnie Cheng, and thanker Captain Lori Mitchell.

Thank you Paul for a memorable presentation. Interest appears high, and is piqued for many club members.





At Our Club March 14, 2017 


New PA Rotarian Robyn Beaucage presented today on her avocation of representative for Sun Life Financial, and more importantly the why and wherefore of her decision to join Rotary. The former Ajax Ontario native has found a good home in Thunder Bay in the financial services industry, with a background also in teaching and retail business. Her grandparents were Rotarians and she has fond memories of being made welcome at meetings years ago, as well as the service opportunities available. She has already stepped up to take on (with Kevin Holloway), mentorship of the newly rejuvenated PA Rotaract club (university aged leaders).

She is pictured here with President-elect Brenda Winter (who chaired today's meeting-centre L); her spouse and business partner Steven (who is now a Fort William club member-far L); and Past-president and ADG Maria Hudolin (her current mentor, and who also thanked Robyn on behalf of the club).Maria aptly described Robyn as a "breath of fresh air." Well done Robyn..and welcome to our friendly service club.



At Our Club March 7, 2017


An off site meeting at St Paul's United Church was well attended by the club plus Rotarians from other clubs, thanks to Rotarians Rev Rob Smith, St. Paul's minister and  music lover Jaro Kotalik.

A fine luncheon was followed by a demonstration of the 3300 pipe Casavant organ of the church, with commentary by organist Bert Rowson and music by Jason Scriver, Director of Music at St Paul's United.


There was a unique opportunity to not only hear the pipes but explore them.

Pictures show part of the ensemble as well as Rotarian Jim Colquhoun exploring an elevated rank of pipes behind the scenes a la the phantom of the opera.

This unique outing was a treat for all attending.




At Our Club Feb 21, 2017


Environmental activist Scott Harris returned to the club for a very comprehensive review of environmental challenges both locally and internationally in this decidedly troubling era on "blue dot" earth, still with an embedded fossil fuel culture, (despite massive warnings from scientists, who must unfortunately continue to do battle with climate change deniers and apologists for the oil industry)!

The outlook and prognosis from Scott's vantage point currently (but there is always hope) is rather grim.

He and colleagues within Thunder Bay (a handout listed 10 hard working organizations devoted to preserving the healthy environment) devote their lives to the cause of making the people and politicians aware.

Much appreciated Scott (brother of the late and respected PA Rotarian Glen Harris)!
Pictured is Scott Harris (centre right) along with Brian Thompson far left (who thanked Scott), Brenda Winter, President-elect who invited Scott to speak), and President Vonnie Cheng.



At Our Club Feb 14, 2017


Dr. Brian Stevenson, distinguished President of Lakehead University, addressed the club today on "LU-Updates since our Report to the Community."

He is pictured (centre) with Toby Goodfellow (Senior Advisor to the President) and Brenda Winter (Rotary President -elect and former LU Registrar) both on the left; as well as Kathryn Davidson ( LU Philanthropy Associate), President Vonnie Cheng and Past-President Irene Kozlowski on the right. (Note all the Rotarians present are LU alumni).

Dr. Stevenson's stellar academic record including a special interest in international relations and policy was evident throughout the presentation.

Currently with 8,284 students, there is prominent international growth (about 1000 students as at this January) and the university is "fully integrated in the community."

Number one ratings (McLeans survey) in total research dollars, student awards, and total library expenses are notable accomplishments.

Innovation going forward includes the "Telepresence Initiative" with high definition immersive experiences for students.

There was much more, compressed nicely time wise to include an informative and interactive Q and A session. The club is indebted to Dr. Stevenson and his senior staff for attending today.


At Our Club Jan 24, 2017

Charles Cirtwill, CEO and founding president of the Northern Policy Institute, returned today for an update on the work done by the influential northern Ontario think tank.


A former member of our club (til this position made it unfortunately impossible to continue), Charles is pictured on the far left along with his senior advisor and executive assistant Samantha Angell, then Rob Grady (who introduced Chas), Robyn Beaucage (who thanked Chas) and President Vonnie Cheng.

Charles travels extensively to all communities in the northwest and northeast and is passionate about talking to people and developing evidence based solutions and analysis in this jurisdiction.

Very interesting are stats and repercussions indicating differences between the eastern and western sectors of the north. Issues with physical connectivity in the western "end of road" communities do account for some of the reasons why the northwest generally underperforms economically.

On a positive note there are opportunities for youth employment in the west , unlike those in the southern "GTA.".

Charles full presentation is available on the link below.

It is refreshing to have Charles return to the club with this important analysis.



At Our Club Jan 17, 2017


Past-President Kevin Holloway, Chair of the Allocations Committee presented cheques today to 7 worthy recipient groups.
Kevin allowed the recipients to respond; all did so very professionally. They were grateful and so were club members for their outstanding work:


MS-Society-Lake Superior District Chapter:
Kevin presenting to Brittany Chrusz (supporting educational seminars and promotional material)


Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Foundation: Terri Hrkac and Shonath Kajorinne (supporting "Prevent Alcohol and Risk-Related Trauma in Youth=PARTY")

Age Friendly Thunder Bay (AFTB): Barb Philp (printing and promotion of five-year Age Friendly Community Wide Action Plan for TB)


Roots to Harvest: Erin Beagle: (diverse projects for repairing program vehicle, maintenance of garden tools, machinery and other assets)

Elizabeth Fry Society: Mary Veltri (purchase and installation of an exterior sign on building



Wesway: Karen Maki (purchase of as corner cabinet)

LU Interprofessional Student Society: Katelyn Varga (supporting a Simulation Challenge (SIM) interactions.

The club wishes all these groups success moving forward.


At Our Club Jan 10, 2017


imageEmma McDonald presented today on a fine (Rotary partnered) initiative in maternal-child care for mothers delivering babies in Uganda.

 Looking pretty good having just landed from Uganda (yesterday), the program is entitled "Full Soul" (souled for good) and with her friend and lead Christa Hassam, involves obtaining simple but essential sterile instrument kits for the delivery process (including K-basins, clamps, scalpel). The ultimate goal clinically is to reduce maternal and newborn mortality rates.
The pilot project needs time for evaluation with prelim findings cited. Over 20 years more disseminated kits might theoretically mean positive outcomes for up to 15,000 babies.
Emma has a Masters in Public Health (U of Waterloo), following an HBSc in biology at LU and is the daughter of prominent PA Rotarian Jim McDonald.

Pictured are Emma (centre) flanked on left by fellow Sioux Lookout (Past-President) Rotarian Clifford Mushquash (currently studying here at LU), and Marilyn Leiterman (who thanked Emma) and President Vonnie Cheng on right. Oh yes, that's proud dad Jim McDonald in the background.
Excellent Rotary International Service..Emma..well done indeed


At Our Club Jan 3, 2017


Lakehead University Centre for Health Care Ethics bioethicist Dr. Richard Matthews, commenced the new Rotary calendar year with a powerful presentation on "Racism and Cultural Safety in Health Care."

Health ethics and violence ethics are special interests of Dr. Matthews.

The talk clearly defined racism and it's pervasiveness in all society, including ensconced in each and  every one of us to  a degree (often not fully perceived). In health care, as in all spheres of racism, there is an "unjust distribution of power." In practice (and many examples were cited) in the health care sector the various vulnerable individuals..(being indigenous being one important sub-type), diminished access to care is the result. Culturally unsafe care diminishes,demeans and disempowers.

Dr. Matthews offered a number of take away principles to promote cultural safety. This important topic yielded a number of  relevant questions and discussion during and after the meeting. The club is indebted to Dr. Matthews.
Pictured is (left to right: Brenda Winter, President-Elect, Jackie Dojack (who introduced the speaker), Dr. Matthews, and Dr. Jaro Kotalik, also a  bioethicist and who thanked the speaker)

His full bio and presentation can be found at the links below

Richard Matthews bio

Rotary Club Cultural Safety Presentaion (PowerPoint)

Hilary McDougall introduced herself to the club today, taking on the new and revitalized PA Rotaract club. She is pictured on the right with President Cheng and Past-President Kevin Holloway, who will liaise with Hilary. Hilary is in 1st year business at LU and was a RYLArian a few short years ago. Members are encouraged to assist Hilary in recruitment to the new club. Thanks for stepping up, Hilary.



At Our Club Dec 6, 2016


LU History Department’s Dr. Nathan Hatton, an encyclopedia of fact and storytelling on the subject of the history of wrestling, presented today on “Early Wrestling on the Canadian Frontier: Manitoba and the Lakehead.”

This fascinating story dates back to the Pre-Confederation era with indigenous peoples engaged in social arbitration (i.e. safety valve) style wrestling, then the fur trade culture with more rough and tumble. Early Settlement wrestling (1870-1900) saw European , largely UK style and championed locally by men like James Conmee. Then into the Settlement Expansion era (1900-1930), catch-as-catch can took over, the precursor to modern style wrestling. The story came alive with local adherents often of Finnish heritage. During the Great Depression many of the immigrants returned home and the advent of professional wrestling began.

Nathan is pictured with Brenda Winter (left), President Cheng and Jim McDonald (on the right).


Nathan has 2 books out on the subject (Rugged Game and Thrashing Sessions)…see cover for latter.


A fascinating history and the club question period was testament to this.


Presentation (PPT)




At Our Club Dec 20, 2016


Terry Dyck, President and CEO of IGY Life Sciences, presented today on his company's exciting new immunology application to improved immune health  for humans as well as animals.

IGY Immune Technologies and Life Sciences Inc. is a privately-held biosciences company specializing in the extraction, development and commercialization of broad spectrum antibodies, or immunoglobulin (IgY), for use as an OTC nutraceutical and for development of antibodies for targeted pathogens. The company was formed in 2009 to commercialize a superior proprietary process for extraction of avian immunoglobulin from chicken egg yolks.
Terry gave specific targeted areas such as anti-lipase (monoclonal antibodies) in the treatment of obesity and anti-rotavirus immunoglobulin applicable to humans and piglets.  This "game changer" science was very well received by the club and we wish Terry the very best going forward.

Further information is at:

He is pictured here (note the exceptional halo light) along with Brenda Winter (who secured the speaker--left), and Laurie Tulloch (who introduced Terry) as well as President Vonnie Cheng. Dave Legge thanked Mr. Dyck.



The club also celebrated 3 new members (the 3 Rs) in a solemn and intense induction ceremony chaired by President Cheng with the charge delivered by Past-President Colin Bruce.
Welcome to new members Rob Smith (2nd from left flanked by proposer Bill Everitt); Rod Morrison (with the classic blue sweater, beside proposer Doug Shanks (with the Christmas tie); and Robyn Beaucage (far right, beside President Vonnie Cheng, proposer of Robyn, and Colin Bruce).



At Our Club Dec 6, 2016


LU History Department’s Dr. Nathan Hatton, an encyclopedia of fact and storytelling on the subject of the history of wrestling, presented today on “Early Wrestling on the Canadian Frontier: Manitoba and the Lakehead.”

This fascinating story dates back to the Pre-Confederation era with indigenous peoples engaged in social arbitration (i.e. safety valve) style wrestling, then the fur trade culture with more rough and tumble. Early Settlement wrestling (1870-1900) saw European , largely UK style and championed locally by men like James Conmee. Then into the Settlement Expansion era (1900-1930), catch-as-catch can took over, the precursor to modern style wrestling. The story came alive with local adherents often of Finnish heritage. During the Great Depression many of the immigrants returned home and the advent of professional wrestling began.

Nathan is pictured with Brenda Winter (left), President Cheng and Jim McDonald (on the right).


Nathan has 2 books out on the subject (Rugged Game and Thrashing Sessions)…see cover for latter.


A fascinating history and the club question period was testament to this.


Presentation (PPT)






At Our Club Nov 30, 2016


The Northwestern Ontario Innovation Centre was featured today with a dynamic presentation by Manager Judy Sander (pictured in middle), accompanied by Special Events and Programming Coordinator Melissa McClement (right, beside Judy).

The Centre (housed at Confederation College) supports a myriad of “home -grown” economic development innovators, and there were a number of examples (e.g. Aerovate, Meaglow) provided showing remarkable innovation work (suspected not generally known about by many in the community).
Full details are at Suffice to say there is remarkable success with some of the “graduates.” Ongoing programming like Biz Kids, CoStarter, TechKids Camp were outlined as well as the many partnerships in Thunder Bay (Thunder Bay Public Library one notable example).
Melissa spoke about an upcoming initiative (sneak-previewed today) in partnership with TbayTel.

InfoSheets were handed out..the scope is quite remarkable.

Judy and Melissa were  introduced by Maria Hudolin (second on left) and thanked by Rob Grady (far right). Ever present is President Vonnie Cheng (far left).
Judy and Melissa were also welcomed back. The Q & A period showed great appreciation for their work.




At Our Club Nov 22, 2016


Matt Szybalski (pictured on right with President Cheng and Rob Sampson) , Chief Archivist and Corporate Records Manager for Thunder Bay, spoke on “City of Thunder Bay Archives-A Rich Legacy.”

Matt is a Certified Archivist with extensive past work history in this area  dating back to 2007 in Thunder Bay and Scotia Bank in southern Ontario.
The focus of his presentation today was on the corporate permanent archival records of the city..extensive indeed, not fully digitized as of yet.
Matt is charged with “creating order out of chaos” a clever segue from President Cheng’s earlier reflection.

A major application is research, available to the public. Mr Szybalski brought the issues of the CNR swing bridge, urban chickens and Daylight Savings Time to life.

Matt Szybalski bio

Presentation: City of Thunder Bay Archives-A Rich Legacy (Powerpoint)



At Our Club Nov 15, 2016


Headline speaker today was our very own PA Rotarian Jaimie Mintenko, (pictured left-centre, beside Past President Darren Fisk, who introduced Jaimie, President Vonnie Cheng and Captain Lori Mitchell ,far right, who thanked Jaimie). Jaimie is a busy entrepreneur in the learning field, operating both the Scholars Education Centre (dealing with students from kindergarten to university) , a franchise originating in Thunder Bay; and the Academy of Learning (targeting more mature students like future PSWs, the largest private career college campus in Canada. The audience members were interested to hear of Jaimie’s goals of excellence in teaching a wide variety of students in individualized needs-based situations; especially how she pulls this off. Jaimie’s professional career is certainly very ambitious but clearly rewarding. The club asked many questions and her responses were spot on, with charm.



Young Kade Berlinquette ( of Hammarskjold Collegiate; pictured with mom Kerry) along with President Cheng and President-Elect Brenda Winter, addressed the club on his fine stint at RYLA in Crookston MN (the 2 other PA Rotary participants were on a couple of weeks ago). It was a great learning experience. Academic leadership sessions were varied and functional, and there were moments of joy when the kids handed out roses to citizenry on the streets, and also performing as Justin Bieber. The club is proud of Jade indeed.



Sergeant Greg Stein of Thunder Bay City Police (far left) outlined the safety procedures for Rotarians (and the public in general) involved in the upcoming Rotary Santa Claus parade. Greg flanks President Vonnie Cheng  who in turn is book ended by Rotarian chef de mission Brian Thompson.


At Our Club Nov 8, 2016


Following a solemn Remembrance Day Program featuring the Colour Party of Port Arthur Branch #5 (including prayers, last post and rouse), the club was treated to a return visit presentation by Dr.Michel Beaulieu, assistant professor of history (LakeheadUniversity), award winning author and military scholar on "Remembering the First and Second World Wars." Dr. Beaulieu is pictured (centre) with President VonnieCheng (far left), Rob Grady (center left who thanked the speaker), Brenda Winter (President-elect-ght) and Past President Irene Kozlowski (who introduced the speaker- middle right).

The presentation focused on major contributions from our area, many not having been recognized sufficiently enough and honoured (good example, the commitment and bravery of substantial numbers of indigenous veterans..though amends are being planned). The 96th battalion- Lake Superior Regiment fought in numerous battles for our country and were very active in both wars. Dr. Beaulieu covered many NWO contributions including shipbuilding and aircraft manufacturing, influential local politicians (example-Minister of "everything", MP C.D. Howe); labour camps, sabotage attempts, women's suffrage movement, health care challenges both at home and with returning vets (PTSD etc); even the adoption of the poppy right here in Prince Arthur (July 1921). All told, the two world wars dramatically changed the entire region.Time permitted just a few Q and A discussions; the discourse continues at great length. The club is indebted to Dr. Beaulieu for presenting yet again.


At Our Club Nov 1, 2016


Two speakers made for a busy agenda today. Karl Wahl (Fort William Rotary club; 2nd from right) opened with a review of the early days one hundred years ago of the Fort William-Port Arthur Rotary club, inaugurated in 1916 (subsequently dividing into Fort William and Port Arthur separate clubs in 1924). The first major project was the building of the "Outlaw" bridge over the Pigeon River (1917): an interesting historical presentation Karl (and you will presenting your book on the topic at the February 17/17 anniversary dinner).

Dr. David Kemp (LakeheadUniversity Department of Geography), then spoke on the care and maintenance of aircraft in WW 1 (Keeping Them Flying), using the precision notebooks of his grandfather, the diminutive Edward Watson 1882-1944), air mechanic trained as a "joiner" (wood working tradesman), and a "rigger" in the production and maintenance of early aircraft. The technology at the time consisted (in part) of various usages of wood (ash, spruce, mahogany etc), piano wire (Swedish), canvas and clever practical joinery. Diagrams from the Riggers' Technical Training School were shown and end points included the famous "Sopwith Camel" as an example. Dr. Kemp is pictured far right along with Karl Wahl (see above), and Brenda Winter (president-elect),( past-president) Judi Turner and (current president) Vonnie Cheng (from left to center).



At Our Club October 25, 2016


President elect Brenda Winter lead the club today in a celebration of World Polio Day (October 24th), established over a decade ago by Rotary International. Since 1985 Rotary has contributed over $1.3 billion to help eradicate polio (now so very close...only 26 cases extant in 3 countries as at September 26, 2016).

Brenda came up with a real treat today, a knowledge contest of polio with losers contributing bucks to Polio Plus.

Pictured is the winning team with medals and smiles (L to R: Joe Wasielewski, Jim Crooks, Colin Bruce, Bob Tomlinson, Brenda Winter, Jackie Dojack, Roly and Judi Turner). A fun way to learn and contribute.



Fashion plate Rotarian..Pritam Lamba..with door prize  fall colours ..dazzling!



At Our Club October 18, 2016


President- Elect Brenda Winter (far right) introduced and thanked RYLA "grads" Spencer Korol (centre-left) and Sarah (Rahne) Mehagan (centre-right) at today's meeting. President Vonnie Cheng (far left) chaired the meeting.

Spencer and Rahne spoke very eloquently about the Rotary youth leadership camp (in Crookston MN) and how it empowered them in a meaningful way as leaders of the future. Spencer attends Sir Winston Churchill and Rahne, La Verendrye high schools. Kade Berlinquette also represented the club and was unable to make today's meeting.

Brenda expressed pride in these fine young leaders, and their presentation skills were very evident. They answered pointed questions with similar mature skill. The club is pleased to sponsor this leadership camp every year.



At Our Club October 11, 2016


The club had a lesson today in safe food handling and (conversely) food borne illnesses (from common malpractice).
Guests were Melissa Payne, dietetic intern at TBRHSC,(pictured centre right along with Sheri Maltais, dietician at the hospital- centre left). Chris Bailey (far L) thanked Melissa (the speaker) and the guests were introduced by Brenda Winter (middle). President Vonnie Cheng chaired the meeting (far R).

The presentation commenced with an interactive skit with the "cook" doing all the wrong things to facilitate contamination.
Interesting facts on food born illness in Canada and the world were presented. Symptoms and pathology of illnesses were outlined.
 A lively Q and A period attested to the interest and practical importance of the issues.



At Our Club October 4, 2016


The club heard today from guest Frank Gerry, on "Model Railroading-100 years old and still going strong."
Mr.Gerry, a Sun Life advisor represents the National Model Railroad Association in this  part of the northern Can/American district.
The 18,200 member international NMRA has been the passion hobby organization for model railroading for a long time. Started in the 1890s, it has been far more than "toy trains." It's a passionate art form (in 3D) for enthusiasts around the world. The presentation explained the details.
Mr. Gerry is pictured here with Marlon Hagerty of our club and Vonnie Cheng, president (left) and Doug Shanks, an old school chum on the right. Doug introduced Frank and Marlon thanked him.
The group surrounds a very small functioning 1/160 scale model.



At Our Club September 27, 2016


Pictured is President Vonnie Cheng with guest speaker Dr. Julee Boan,Boreal Program Manager at Ontario Nature, the leading conservation organization in Ontario. Julee's office is in Thunder Bay across from the Prince Arthur Hotel; members are invited over to learn more about ON's work.
One of her many tasks is promotion and advocacy in the area of edible wild plants. The topic is germane and increasingly salient in our rapidly industrialized and hi tech world.
The club was treated to fine overview of this topic and more.
The link follows.
Dr. Boan was introduced by Dave Legge and thanked by Bob Tomlinson.

Ontario Nature Presentation PDF



At Our Club September 20, 2016


Andrew Murchison (left) picture above with President Vonnie Cheng and Past-President Darren Fisk who introduced him and loves his pasta.
"Life is a combination of Magic and Pasta" - Federico Fellini

These words opened the presentation by Andrew Murchison as he described his passion for making pasta and how he came to start his own business in Thunder Bay, "Big Lake Pasta".

Andrew and his young family lived in Calgary for 10 years where he worked in the financial field. As the city grew and expenses increased, he decided to relocate to his home town. Andrew always liked making his own pasta, sharing with family and friends. An "accidental" sight unseen purchase of an extruder that was much larger than expected was the spark that lit the fire of entrepreneurship. Big Lake Pasta was born. Being part of the regular Thunder Bay Country Market increased his exposure and now he sells his fresh pasta not only to market goers but to retail outlets, restaurants and caterers. He uses only the freshest ingredients, much of them local, and his bronze dies ensure a pasta surface that 'holds the sauce'. Mangia


At Our Club September 13, 2016


Dave Grady (pictured above with President Vonnie Cheng) entertained us with a light, informative presentation for his classification talk. Born, raised and educated in Thunder Bay, Dave has chosen to stay in his home town to work and raise his young family. Having lived away from the city for a time, he came to appreciate the benefits of being close to family and the opportunities available.

Even though he had no formal business training, he took a leap and went to work for Xerox, a leader in business processes and technology. He now owns and successfully operates TBXI, an authorized Xerox agent.  Dave is an enthusiastic supporter of Rotary and currently sits on our Board of Directors responsible for the Club Service portfolio.  Dave was introduced by President-Elect Brenda Winter and thanked by Irene Kozlowski.

Maria (far left) and Jack  Hudolin picture above with the Rotary Friendship Exchange trophy presented to Maria from Vijaya and James John (far right) of the RFE Team from India.

James and Vijaya John (part of the RFE Team from India) pictured above with President Vonnie Cheng, Colin Bruce, Brenda Winter, Maria and Jack Hudolin.



Maria (far left) and Jack Hudolin picture above with the Rotary Friendship Exchange trophy presented to Maria from Vijaya and James John (far right) of the RFE Team from India.


James and Vijaya John (part of the RFE Team from India) pictured above with President Vonnie Cheng, Colin Bruce, Brenda Winter, Maria and Jack Hudolin.


At Our Club August 30, 2016

imageErin Beagle, Executive Director of Roots to Harvest (pictured in the above photo with President Vonnie Cheng), gave an impassioned presentation on the programs offered by the non-profit organization to help introduce and mentor marginalised youth to the workforce. Funded by various community partners, Roots to Harvest provides paid work opportunities to economically and socially challenged youth through the ‘Summer Jobs for Youth’ employment program with YES Employment Services. Roots to Harvest Interns, aged 15-18, work together to plant, tend, harvest, sell and donate sustainably grown vegetables produced from the Urban Market Garden. Working at local farms alongside farmers helps to develop self confidence and social skills while gaining job experience on different aspects of farming in the North. The Summer Food Interns also work with the Shelter House and other organizations such as Dew Drop Inn, Good Food Box, and Community Garden Collective to prepare meals (with fresh food grown by the Interns), stock shelves, pack food boxes, and clear more land for gardening. During the school year, several of the summer youth stay on to work part-time with Roots to Harvest, in the Academic Year Program (AYP). Connections made with the non-profit and social service sector provide Interns with references and potential employment beyond the farming season.

In addition to their “Corngoma” garden at Cornwall and Algoma Streets, Roots to Harvest managed gardens at several high schools, which dovetails with their Farm to Cafeteria Thunder Bay initiative in partnership with the Thunder Bay District Health Unit and Lakehead Public School cafeterias. Bringing together community organizations, producers, distributors, decision makers, teachers, students, chefs and good food, Farm to Caf Thunder Bay aims to produce local, tasteful, healthy and fresh meals to high school students. Roots to Harvest also work year round with classes of school children to promote food literacy.

Roots to Harvest, in short, is about helping young people and the community through gardening and the production of healthy locally grown food. Their major challenge is the lack of ongoing funding to meet the staffing needs.


At Our Club August 23, 2016


Speaker Maria Hudolin, pictured above (centre) with President Vonnie Cheng (left) and President-Elect Brenda Winter (right) who introduced her. 

Maria Hudolin, Club member and active Rotarian at the local, District and International level, regaled us with anecdotes, beautiful photos and video clips of her recent 24 day visit to India. She was accompanied on that trip by her husband Jack and her niece, club member Krysta Logozzo.
They were part of a Rotary Friendship Exchange that took them to Tamil Nadu (in the southern part of India) where they were generously hosted by members of two Rotary clubs there.

Then on to New Delhi to participate in a National Immunization Day where they assisted in administering polio vaccine to hundreds of children, an ongoing project supported by Rotary worldwide. The final part of their stay was spent touring with other Rotarians from Australia, Brazil and Canada ending in Mumbai.
Our District 5580 has close connections to several Indian communities having contributed to Global grants that have been used to build schools and assist with many other projects. It was rewarding for Maria to see first hand what Rotary has to offer to these communities.

Maria was very impressed by the warm welcome they received everywhere they visited in this “land of contrast,colour and sound” and looks forward to hosting visitors from India on the upcoming reciprocal Rotary Friendship exchange in our District in a few weeks time.

  At Our Club August 16, 2016


PA Rotarian Mike Nitz, Regional Manager Small Business, Northwestern Ontario, Royal Bank of Canada, was today's celebrity speaker on the ABCs of Social Media Technology: how it is impacting the lives of everyone on earth. Mike is a firm convert and expert on all facets of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and others; an unalterable way of like for especially the new "Net Generation."  Factoids from his Power Point clearly point out the reality of for example: 2/3 of the world population using social networks. He described the 80/20 rule currently extant; that 80% is being used for true social contact, with 20% for business.
Also that technologies like this website are even falling behind FB et al for business transactions.

Pictured is Mike, towering above Bonnie Moore (who thanked Michael) and President Vonnie Cheng (whose intro included a monumental reflection on technology..then, in the 60s, now and future). The audience were fascinated, some with consternation. Thanks Mike and good luck with your busy interactions.

At Our Club August 9, 2016

imagePamela Cain presented today on the Thunder Bay Heritage Advisory CommitteeShe is pictured with Doug Shanks (far left) who Introduced Pam, Brian Thompson (who thanked her) and on far right President Vonnie Cheng. A thorough outline of the goals and function of this committee enlightened the audience. Many heritage buildings were cited and the public is encouraged to access them on walking tours (such as "Doors Open" upcoming September 10th, 10 am-4pm). Pam's extensive background in museum and heritage buildings was manifested. Our thanks for "instilling pride" (Brian Thompson's quote) was evident.


Doug Shanks and wife Karen are pictured with Wiebe Lorenz, visiting from Germany. Members will recall our fine inbound exchange student, sister Nora Lorenz, back in 2009-10. The Shanks have developed a lasting bond with the Lorenz family.


Newest member Dr. Marlon Hagerty is pictured with President Cheng after an intro by David Legge. Marlon is a radiation oncologist at TBRHSC and a transfer from the Rotary Club of Halifax. Warm wishes Marlon for your exciting career here and fellowship/service in Port Arthur Rotary.


At Our Club July 26, 2016

imageDr. Matt Tocheri, distinguished Canada Research Chair in Human Origins at Lakehead University and Research Associate in the Human Origins Program at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, (and from Thunder Bay!!), presented on his ground braking research on Homo floresiencis, popularly known as Hobbit man; recently discovered at Liang Bua on the island of Flores in Indonesia.

The dating methodologies that challenge anthropologists are of great scientific interest. The 1 meter tall adult skeleton represented an earlier hominid line, quite possibly having arrived in that location a million years ago from Africa and likely predates modern man. The findings have had enormous impact on the whole field of hominid evolution. Discussion on the importance of studying the evolution ( or devolution ?) of human diversity was exceptionally poignant.

Dr. Tocheri was generous in his commentary and was welcomed by the club. He is pictured here (the tall handsome guy in the middle) with from left to right: Irene Sottile (FW club and Assistant District Governor); Brenda Winter (PA club President-elect); Deb Warner (District 5580 Governor-Elect from Virginiatown MN...(welcome Deb); Vonnie Cheng, club President and Fred Baker, thanker and family connection. 

Click here to view Dr. Tocheri's presentation.  You can also listen to Dr. Tocheri's his Quirks and Quarks interview on Bob MacDonald's podcast of April 2, 2016: club was honored and delighted with Dr. Tocheri's presentation and we wish him well with ongoing work on this project.


At Our Club July 19, 2016


Lennie Hampton (pictured with President Vonnie Cheng) presented today on insights into the function, purpose, benefits et al of credit unions. Ms Hampton is Regional General Manager of Rapport Credit Union (formally Ontario Civil Service and Provincial Alliance ( a merger) credit unions). "Strength in numbers" came through loud and clear for the (international) credit union system. She was introduced by Bill Everitt and thanked by Jeff Sampson. Thanks very much Lennie. A copy of Lennie's presentation is coming soon.



At Our Club July 12, 2016


Allocations Chair Kevin Holloway (pictured seated front row, with President Vonnie Cheng), performed his "Holloway Hour" of presentations of cheques to a number of exceptionally worthy Thunder Bay organizations as mandated by our Rotary Club service function.
Kevin provided recipients an opportunity to speak as well as adding Rotary context. The value of each allocation was made apparent to the audience:

From left to right (standing):
(Rotarian) Mary-Anne Comuzzi; for George Jeffrey Children's Centre-Joe Vanderwees Memorial Mini-Golf Tournament (honouring our late member Joe Vanderwees as well of course):
Gwen O'Reilly (Executive Director) and Sherry Scott(coordinator) for Good Food Box Program; healthy food boxes for poor and marginalized people; donation assisting the establishment of storage huts at the Moose Hall location:
Diane Sustawenko (Executive Director-St, John Ambulance) for Camp 911 (medical first response programming camps for young people):
Levina Collins and Rosalind Lockyer (Board member and Executive Director of PARO Centre for Women's Enterprise) for continuing programming in assisting women entrepreneurs:
Joan Williams and Barb Philp (Executive Director and Board member of Hospice Northwest) for assistance with the 5th Annual Hike for Hospice, a major fundraiser:
Brieanne Olibris for Northwestern Ontario Regional Science fair 2016-a gold level sponsorship for a fine young student scientist (contact K. Holloway for details):
Unable to attend and not pictured: Danielle Griffin for Hope Air -2 flights for low-income Canadians having to travel by air for healthcare.

All recipients expressed their thanks and gratitude. Some were repeat recipients. The club wishes them well in their respective community service efforts.


At Our Club July 5, 2016


Newly minted President Vonnie Cheng had a full slate at her first meeting and commenced with a fine reflection on the meaning of Rotary and our club.
Today we were privileged to meet and hear the 2016-17 District 5580 Governor Herb Schmidt (AM-FM club of Fargo-Moorehead ND, USA) along with his charming wife Bonnie. They are pictured together on the left beside ADG Irene Sottile (Fort William club who introduced Mr. Schmidt), Past-President Darren Fisk, President Vonnie Cheng, Brenda Winter (President-Elect) and Rob Grady (who thanked the DG).
DG Schmidt was gracious in his praise for our club (and other Canadian clubs) and thanked us for the hospitality.
He overviewed the massive problems requiring service and help throughout the world, then focussed on a number of areas he personally wishes to champion within the District. These included: improved service activities for indigenous peoples under all 6 avenues of service; RYLA flexibility and their special needs; youth protection; membership challenges; and "daring to be different" (i.e. innovative and fresh thinking).
He was warmly received and initiated a spirited discussion with Mike Nitz on the topic of membership recruitment and retention going forward..lots to consider here. The club thanks DG Schmidt for his visit and we look forward to his leadership this Rotary year.


DG Schmidt presents a Certificate of Appreciation to past DG Roland (Roly) Turner, specific to his past work as Chair of the Grants Committee; now taking on the Ethics Chair. Judi Turner, his soul mate is there as well. Well done sir!!


At Our Club June 28, 2016

imageOur club "year end" saw emotional farewells from both our exchange student Ann-Helene Kerner and President Darren Fisk.

They are pictured above as follows (L to R):
Anne-Helene Kerner, Darren Fisk, Vonnie Cheng (assuming presidency next meeting),Cindy Mucklow (host parent mom for A-H), Paula Timmins (host-parent for A-H), Jim Mucklow (host dad for A-H), and Hannah Rochow (grand-daughter of Paula Timmins and a Paul Harris Fellow).

Anne-Helene has had a wonderful year here and her address (accompanied by one of her A-H Kerner You-tube videos of the District Conference) was testimony to a vibrant young student who has profited greatly by her exchange year. She spoke very honestly from the heart about her fears and challenges and successes, all part of an effort the entire program can be proud of. Mat Diegel (Exchange Chair) spoke at length about her maturation and the club peppered her with questions about her experience and future (outgoing of course, with repeat Grade 12, later cinema ). At this time A-H thanked all club members (" I know all of you (almost)") and said " I am not (now) scared to talk." There was some ambivalence in her parting comments about returning to France. Very strong host parents: the Mucklows, and Paula Timmins (see picture) were present and very proud of their charge. She was given a well deserved warm standing ovation.

Another standing ovation came for President Darren, completing a hard fought year with excellence and "110%" dedication to hard work for the club. His standards have been very high and his final "reflection" epitomized that facet of his fine leadership. Well done Darren. He was welcomed by the past-presidents to the next phase. Incoming President Vonnie Cheng then congratulated Darren and promised to carry the club's fortunes forward.


At Our Club June 21, 2016

Assistant Professor (Faculty of Business Administration, Lakehead University), David Richards, presented today on his special interest of "Interpersonal Relations at Work."

David holds BA, MSW, MBA and PhD degrees and will soon be Assistant Dean at the university. He is pictured here along with (from Left to right): Peter Viitala (thanked the speaker); Brenda Winter (introduced the speaker), and President Darren Fisk (far right).
The talk focussed on Professor Richards' research into the fascinating world of organizational behaviour, as based on well accepted "attachment theory" in the workplace.
The presentation was fascinating and the Q &A period reflected that. Brenda Winter introduced Professor Richards, and he was thanked by Peter Viitala.
He can be reached at: lakeheadu%23ca|drichards. To read his bio, click here. To view his presentation, click here.


AT OUR CLUB June 14, 2016


Dr. Elaine Chow; DDS, of OASIS Family Dental (501 Edward St N in a newly converted church), graced the podium today to overview modern general dentistry in Thunder Bay.

Dr. Chow had a Power Point as well as video audiovisual assist to explain everything from first dental exams and advice for babies brushing to complex technologies involving crown, bridge, implant restorations, dental hygiene, "Invisalign" bracing and advice on how to best utilize your dental insurance to improve your oral health..

There were numerous relevant questions from the members and overall, the presentation was highly enlightening. Pictured from left to right: President Darren Fisk, Jackie Dojack (who introduced our guest); Dr. Elaine Chow (guest speaker); and Leslie Savitsky (thanker). Thanks also to President-elect Vonnie Cheng for the timely invitation.

Dr. Chow can provide (provisionally) a link to her presentation upon request at : oasisfamilydental%23ca|info


AT OUR CLUB May 31, 2016


Keira Purdon attended today (pictured with her certificate and teacher, Alex Kraft Wilson far right) as winner of the Rotary 4 Way test Essay Contest. Of course, she read it to acclaim. Entitled "Karat" it explored the karate way of life in Okinawa Japan and it's parallel to the Rotary 4 way test. She was thanked by Dave Silliman (far left) and introduced by test organizer Brenda Winter. President Darren Fisk is also present. Hearty congratulations to Keira!


Jamie Mintenko, beaming Rotarian and organizer deluxe of the Rotary sponsored Model United Nations Association (MUNA) delegation is pictured with (from far left to right): Shelby Rooney (former delegate and now facilitator), Spencer Reynolds (grade 12, St. Ignatius); Ashley Little (grade 11, Winston Churchill); Alex McCubbin (grade 11, Winston Churchill); and President Darren Fisk (far right).

Our guests reported with great enthusiasm on their roles as delegates representing Turkey and Chile. Objections, goals and methodology of the conference were explained as well as examples of many of the motions debated, passed and or rejected. Many lessons learned. Collaboration was essential.Talking about solutions to world problems was far more relevant than kids talking about Instagram. The club is again indebted to Jamie for her superb effort for this valuable experience for our student leaders. Their presentations give us all great hope for the future.


AT OUR CLUB May 24, 2016

imageThe Honourable Patty Hajdu, the first female elected MP from Thunder bay Superior North riding and first female Minister of the Status of Women, graced the podium today (on a return visit) to present on her role as Minister and MP, focussing on her voice for northern Ontario at the cabinet table.
She was introduced by one of her former teachers, Art Warwick; describing her in the following context:" Daisies bloom where there is room."
Minister Hajdu discussed her role as a conduit between the everyday citizen and the complex bureaucracy in Ottawa along with her "huge caseload." She also covered a lot of ground discussing her passion re the challenges of gender (in) equality and assisting the vulnerable in our society.
Seppo Pavalainen expressed the club's feeling of pride and honour in her accomplishments and respect for Rotary in his thank you , after a brief but salient Q & A discussion. Click on this link for her bio.


AT OUR CLUB May 10, 2016

Rob Grady presided over this year's Rotary Recognition of Youth In Service Awards, to 4 north Thunder Bay high school students of exceptional merit. For each recipient Rob gave a brief description of the numerous volunteer and leadership activities. Each school was also represented by an appropriate teacher,
See below for the worthy folks with Rob and beaming teachers...great leaders already..congratulations:


St. Ignatius:
(Left to right): Michael Coccimiglio, Jennifer Moscall-Maki, Rob Grady, Adeline Geng, Abigail Proteau, Beatrice Boch (teacher)


Ecole secondaire catholique de La Verendrye:
(Left to right): Claude Camirand (teacher), Denise Malette, Rob Grady, Keara Brunet, Gabrielle Chenard. (Stephanie St. Jacques-unable to appear)


Superior Collegiate Vocational Institute:
(left to right): Justine Hawkins, Jacob Zavitz, Rob Grady, Cameron Surkan, Megan Reppard, Russell Johnston (teacher)


(Left to right): Maggie Wilberforce, Rob Grady,Jett Johnson,Jamie Philp (teacher), Rylee Mose )unable to appear).


AT OUR CLUB May 3, 2016


Dr. Michel Beaulieu and Captain David Ratz presented today on the fascinating topic "The Little Third Reich on Lake Superior-The POW Experience at Camp "R." Dr. Beaulieu is the Chair of the Department of History at Lakehead University. Captain Ratz is Commanding Officer of the Lake Superior Regiment and lectures on Canadian military history at LU. The book (see picture below) was started by Dr. Ernest Zimmerman and completed post-humously by our guests and details the internment civilian camp for a mixture of thought to be undesirables (1150 men and boys), sent to purgatory in the remote north by British tribunals, with very questionable rationals. Labelled a "Nazi" camp, it was far from that in reality. It was located at Red Rock and was one of several notorious camps of similar (but with differences) ilk in the northwest. The talk was distillation into 20 m inutes of the 300 page book which will surely be read by many in the audience...truly fascinating. Our guests were introduced by Krystal Logozzo and thanked by Rob Grady.image



AT OUR CLUB April 26, 2016


Ryan Mackett presented today on the diverse activities of the Lakehead Regional Conservation Authority (LRCA): 101 on conservation authorities in Ontario; LRCA mandate, functions; and overview of the 8 visitor facilities in the immediate Thunder Bay area. Ryan is pictured with President Darren Fisk on his right and "thanker" Peter Viitala to his left. Ryan is the LRCA Community Stewardship and Public Relations officer and performs many functions for the organization.  The variety of watershed, flood plain, erosion and waterway conservation activities were enlightening to the audience as well as the many opportunities for exploring the prime sites open to the public for nature appreciation, birding, kayaking et al. Respect for the properties is key and the Explore Pass is highly recommended. There was an active Q&A period following the talk. Old buddy Bob Tomlinson introduced Mr. Mackett. To read Ryan's bio, click here. To view Ryan's presentation, click here.


Kevin Holloway is pictured with Maria Hudolin receiving his Paul Harris plus 2 pin for his ongoing financial support to the Rotary Foundation. Congratulations and thanks, (past-Pres)Kevin!


AT OUR CLUB April 19, 2016


Brendan D. Hardick, partner at Scrimshaw Scott LLP, presented today on his life and profession as a (primarily) civil litigation lawyer. Brendan joined the club about 1 1/2 years ago. He is pictured (centre) with President Darren Fisk (L) and thanker Lori Mitchell (R). (Warren Philp introduced Brendan and is not pictured). Brendan reviewed the fundamentals of law practice in Canada (and Ontario), and some figures on numbers belonging to the Law Society (of Upper Canada), issues and challenges in practice and his own pathway moving forward. This includes branching out into mental health law. Brendan's family are socially conscious and responsible and he is enjoying service within Rotary. A very healthy Q&A followed the talk, with a minimum of difficult legalese. Brendan is a big asset to the club and will be joining the Board. He has already crafted with other Rotarians, a Youth Protection Policy for the club members. To read Brendan's bio, click here. To view Brendan's presentation, click here.


AT OUR CLUB April 12, 2016


Distinguished Assistant Professor Karen Drake of the Bora Laskin Faculty of Law at Lakehead University addressed the club today on the historical background of Canadian Aboriginal sovereignty, keying on the 3 modes of sovereignty acquisition (doctrines): 1. Conquest , 2. Cession (Treaties) and 3. Discovery. The presentation logically revealed the misinterpretations between the European and Indigenous people leading to flawed treaties and complex issues of (in) equality endemic today. A review of the early "wampum belt" contracts that seemed to promise future fair alliances, and subsequent government "conquest" approach, along with fundamental differences between the English and FN peoples on the meaning of land, were but examples of Professor Drake's powerful essay (links to be provided). She is pictured with President Darren Fisk and Bill Everitt to her right (Bill thanked Professor Drake), and Laurie Tulloch on her left (who introduced our speaker). To read Karen's bio, click here. To view Karen's presentation, click here.



President-elect Vonnie Cheng, John Stewart and President Fisk are pictured with the original axe used to christen the famous "Outlaw Bridge" crossing the Pigeon River at the Scott Highway. This artifact has been in John's possession and was handed over today prior to the centennial celebration.



Maria Hudolin presents a Paul Harris +6 pin to Roly Turner, just completing his distinguished term as District Foundation Chair. Outstanding indeed, Roly.


AT OUR CLUB April 5, 2016


Ashley Priem, longstanding environmentalist at Eco-Superior presented a timely and sobering account today on the Eco-Superior "Idling Campaign," detailing the nasty business of motor vehicle idling and it's effect on GHG emissions. Cognizant of the fact that most of us depend on fossil fuel vehicles she described the reasons why Canadians idle, why much is unnecessary, and then timely, simple recommendations for reducing the plague. Cumulative small actions add up. Reducing warm up idling to maximum 30 seconds on cold days is but one practical suggestion .Did you know that just 1 litre of gas burned emits 2.4 kg of C02? Or that vehicle transportation accounts for 35% of GHG emissions in Ontario? This was a succinct and very informative presentation. Ashley appears (middle L), accompanied by Seppo Pavalainen (far R) , and Lori Mitchell (middle R): thanker and introducer (both passionate) respectively, and President Darren Fisk (far R). Thank you again Ashley. To view Ashley's presentation, click here. To read Ashley's bio, click here


Our delightful exchange student Anne-Helene Kerner (front R) is pictured here with sisters Lucie and Marie, and mom (Dr.) Nathalie and dad (Dr). Gilles progressing R to far L,; along with, at the back: (far R to Left), Mat Diegel (Exchange Chair), Jim Mucklow (current host dad), President Darren Fisk, and Paula Timmins (more recent host parent). The Kerner clan is intact (save one brother) and enjoying Thunder Bay hospitality on their short sojourn here from France, visiting Ann-Helene. Bienvenue!


AT OUR CLUB March 29, 2016


The Honourable Michael Gravelle returned today before a big and appreciative audience to provide a 2016 update of his role as MPP: Minister of Northern Development and Mines.
Much at home at the club, he thanked Rotarians for their work and got on to expand on his pledge (over 5 successful elections dating back to 1995) to make a positive difference. He emphasized his formula of working tirelessly for building and rebuilding partnerships and gaining trust, respect, even good humour in relationships (in short, necessity in "getting it right").
He spoke of his government's investments in highways, the permanent $120M fund for forestry and mining as well as the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund ($100 M-annually).
His discussion of the Ring of Fire project was optimistic, notwithstanding the major challenges of remoteness, infrastructure and aboriginal partnership building.
There was some time for selected Q and A including discussion on the Nipigon bridge, and newcomer to Ontario settlement issues.
Shown here are Mr. Gravelle, flanked on his right by (thanker) Martii Tenander and President Darren Fisk, and on his left by President-elect Vonnie Cheng (who introduced the Minister).


AT OUR CLUB March 22, 2016

imageJeff Sampson, already a very busy man with family and Rotary (inducted here recently) spoke today about his extremely varied and peripatetic work life and it's connection to Rotary service.

He is pictured here with President Darren Fisk (far L) and thanker (Brian Thompson (far R). Brian was not kidding in describing Jeff's life as "frenetic"( in a very positive way). He was introduced by Dave Legge. 
Jeff is currently the Director of Employment and Programs at Confederation College, and as a large division of the College, administers Employment Ontario Contracts and oversees a big network of folks in the north west, providing resource support to all kinds of employers and employees, (cost free through the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities). Jeff rejoined PA Rotary (previously with Rotary in Sudbury)recently having once again found a great home in TB with his wife working at LU and kids (4) loving it here.

Jeff self describes as a management and leadership "nut", entrepreneur and sportsman (high level rugby player) and delights in problem solving in organizations.This of course translates to volunteer service, and Jeff is in position to assist Port Arthur Rotary (given precious time off the road, and prioritizing family et al).
Welcome back to Rotary, Jeff.


AT OUR CLUB March 15, 2016

The PARO Centre for Women's Enterprise was the subject of today's address by (founding) Executive Director Rosalind Lockyer (centre), pictured here beside her PARO fund-raising chair (to her left) Levina Collins. At the far left is Brenda Winter who introduced our guests, Rob Grady (far right) who thanked the guests and president Darren Fisk (right of Ms Lockyer).

PARO stands for "I am ready" and is a unique, very impressive organization, ( head- officed in Thunder Bay but serving all of northern Ontario and down to southern Ontario): providing business networking support for women's businesses, employing a unique funding assistance model, empowerment strategies, social and moral support. It is grass-roots oriented and a registered charity. Donations are welcomed.

The concept of a small (4-7 women) peer lending circle has been very successful (now totalling 73 such groups) as the basis for the above "movement." Ms Lockyer showed a video with testimonials and delivered an eloquent and certainly passionate overview. The club was honoured with her presence. Full information is available at : Impressive accomplishment statistics are there. The organization is certainly "making a difference."


AT OUR CLUB March 8, 2016


Coffee lovers were treated to a seminar and plug on fine coffee, the important points, and the new business of Jamie Nichols, Roastmaster at ROSE N CRANTZ ( He is pictured here with some beans, beside President Darren Fisk (far L), Vonnie Cheng in daffodil yellow (introducer) and Judi Turner (thanker far R). Jamie has gravitated into the field of coffee with an interesting background and philosophy:

“Love the coffee you drink and drink the coffee you love”. This is the philosophy that Jamie has believed in for many years, even before he began roasting coffee. Educated and trained as a cartographer and GIS specialist, Jamie inadvertently started his own business in 2013. It began as a hobby and a quest for a great cup of coffee made at home. Word of a new coffee roaster in Thunder Bay spread quickly and RNC coffee can now be found in multiple retail and restaurant locations around town. Jamie has spent the last three years learning everything he can about the art and science of the coffee industry. He is passionate about his craft and eager to share knowledge and ideas with anyone and everyone in their pursuit of the perfect cup.

His presentation covered a plethora of interesting facts including: coffee as the most traded agricultural product in the world; “Fair Trade” vs” Organic”; brewing rules; buying advice and more (hint- avoid pod-plastic containers: poor quality coffee and highly polluting!).

The presentation was very informative and entertaining. Jamie brought in samples of his fare for Rotarians. Best of luck into the future, Jamie!


AT OUR CLUB March 1, 2016

imageCaptain Lori Mitchell, Executive Director of the Salvation Army, Community and Residential Services, spoke today about her personal and work history with the Salvation Army, She is pictured here with President Darren Fisk (far L), Dave Silliman (far R and SA Board member) who introduced Lori, and Brendan Hardick (who thanked Captain Mitchell). Lori is an experienced leader within her church (Salvation Army), and enjoys working with the public for the good of the unfortunate; also a fine speaker and even entertainer (she sang O Canada at a Blue Jays game!).Her background is extensive, with ordination in 1984, and a number of postings, including parole and hospital chaplaincy.She came to Thunder Bay in June 2015 with husband Don (who commutes) and several kids.
Her presentation on the Salvation Army was superb, outlining the “Identity”,” Mission” and extensive plethora of programming, some very much innovative (example, the new Life Progressive Housing project, hopefully managing residents to become independent citizens over a two year program). Other highlights (of many),were an announcement re the new soup van (funding halfway completed, and the new website just inaugurated (
The club is delighted to have Lori in our midst.


AT OUR CLUB February 23, 2016


Doreen Boucher, Executive Director of the Sexual Abuse Centre-Thunder Bay ( was today’s guest. She is flanked by President Darren Fisk (far left), and introduced by Paula Timmins (right centre) and thanked by Jim Crooks (far right). Ms. Boucher delivered a powerful address on the reality of sexual abuse in Thunder Bay District, with a plethora of statistics. Many of these were rather shocking to some in attendance. Given 35 years plus of experience in this field Doreen was highly credible and forthright. The scope and definition has expanded for the definition; now including conventional rape, also child abuse, sexual harassment and cyber abuse. One excellent vignette was offered by Ms. Boucher, demonstrating many of the clinical principles of this important societal challenge. There was a healthy Q & A period and a great deal to ponder in the presentation. The club is indebted to Doreen for coming today.


AT OUR CLUB February 2, 2016

imageExchange Student Anne-Helene Kerner presented to the club sharing information about her life in France and her exchange year so far. Pictured here are Matt Diegel, Anne Helene, and President Darren Fisk.


AT OUR CLUB January 26, 2016


Charla Robinson (pictured here with President Darren Fisk), President of the Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce, presented today on the Chamber Annual Update. It was a fine overview of their positive work done in 2015 and looking forward into the future. Ms Robinson focused on the 4 core pillars of Chamber activity: advocacy; networking; communication and education. 

The scope is impressive. Liaison with business, government (including the important leaders involved) and public is essential and geared to the unique needs of business in this area. She touched on a plethora of specific activities. Meeting with the province re carbon trading (cap and trade) and its import to business was just one example. Seeking solutions using external models like the successful Osoyos FN model in B.C. was another. 

Chamber marketing and networking activities such as the “shop local..choose Thunder Bay” campaign and the popular monthly after-business get-togethers were mentioned. The organizational links to TB SHIFT was mentioned. Active Rotarian Nova awards were acknowledged.

A fulsome intro and thank you were provided by Marilyn Leiterman and Colin Bruce respectively. Ms Robinson was deemed as a tenacious champion for small business in the community by Mr. Bruce.


AT OUR CLUB January 19, 2016

Fort William Club Past President Jill Zachary presented today on “The Bolivia Connection,” detailing in grand style her June 2015 “travel with a purpose” District 5580 Service project experience in rural Bolivia. Jill has extensive experience in international Rotary service, dating back to her early days as Group Study Exchange District Coordinator and her profession of social work assistance to deserving peoples around the world.
She is pictured with president Darren Fisk, and Heather Minthorn (right centre) who introduced Jill (and proclaimed Jill was a force in her joining Rotary), and Bonnie Moore (who thanked Jill) on the far right. The group is showing off an exquisite hand woven and embroidered fabric from the vibrant Pisac market, located in the Sacred Valley of the Inca's, in Peru.  Pisac  is one of the largest markets in the country and a vast kaleidoscope of colour and culture. 

The talk highlighted first and foremost the fine work at 7 major water reservoir projects in Bolivia, all 100% successful, with the Mano A Mano International Partners. In a land very high up with either drought or heavy rain seasons, crop growth is extremely challenging. Extreme poverty and transportation issues abound.

The experience was of course pure Rotary international service and cultural experience at its best. The people were superb. There were hair raising episodes on the roads and opportunities peripherally to see wonders like Machu Picchu in Peru en route. Rotary collaborations extend to medical clinics and an upcoming school project which the Fort William Club and partners are raising $17,000 USD to proceed with.

Rotary collaborations with Mano a Mano extend to medical clinics and water reservoirs projects.  The Satellite Club of Fort William Rotary is hoping to proceed with the school project in Guitarrani and is seeking funding partnerships with other Rotary clubs in our district to make this a reality.


AT OUR CLUB January 12, 2016


President Elect Vonnie Cheng is pictured with today’s guest speaker, Erin Moir, Youth and Community Outreach Coordinator with Eco-Superior Thunder Bay.
Her presentation was entitled “Keep it Simple” and outlined many interesting (and often concerning) facts about a bevy of household cleaning products; their constituents and relevant hazards to person and the environment. Much of the discussion focussed on “labelling” and how marketing and lack of regulation make for untoward and sometimes serious harm. Everyone should be better informed especially in that on average, $1200 is spent per person on these products yearly.
The overview was most edifying. One example would be the seduction of so-called antibacterial soaps (no better than soap and water) containing “triclosan” a known hormone disruptor apart from even possible effects on antibiotic resistance et al.
Erin spoke comprehensively on the topic and supplied examples of simple and safe alternatives (examples: vinegar, lemon juice, glycerin).
Her complete Power Point presentation can be found by clicking here. You can read her bio here.

Lori Mitchell introduced Erin and she was thanked by Art Warwick. A very healthy Q&A session was included.


AT OUR CLUB - January 5, 2016


Guest speaker today was pharmacist Bryan Gray, owner, operator and progressive educator at River Terrace Medical Pharmacy. The location is on Golf Links Rd below the new Fort William Clinic.

Bryan's focus is on the new generation pharmacist (such as himself), beyond simple pill dispensing and now into areas such as medical reviews (as a screening tool), strategies with implementation with patient clients, home visits, pharmacy integration with programming and more (including anticoagulant screening (warfarin INR), smoking cessation programming and bone densitometry.

Bryan's presentation:

Modern technology assists greatly with computerized drug interaction screening. However the personal touch, face to face still holds sway... so he encouraged everyone to partner with their pharmacist.. A lively Q and A followed. Bryan was introduced by Brenda Winter (pictured on right with Brian in the middle and President Darren Fisk on the left), and thanked by Martti (he lives with pharma). Thanks Bryan, and please return.

To view Bryan's bio, click here. 


New Rotarian Peter Viitala entered the Rotary family at our first 2016 meeting with fanfare. Here he is fêted with (Left to Right) President Fisk, Peter, Past President Seppo Paivalainen, and proposer PP Dave Legge. The club welcomes Peter. Congratulations. 


At Our Club: Dec 29, 2015 

imageRoly Turner, current (in his 4th year) Rotary District Foundation Chair, delivered a masterful explanation of the Rotary Foundation. Specifically his Power Point presentation (see link) was entitled “ an Introduction to the Programs and their Funding.” This is essential material for all members wishing to familiarize themselves with the “big” picture of Rotary internationally; highly regarded as a foundation globally. He was introduced by Laurie Tulloch (very comprehensively) and thanked by Bob Tomlinson. To view Roly's presentation, CLICK HERE.


Allocations Chair Kevin Holloway (far L) was pleased today to present cheques to another round of worthy community recipients: Marissa Tamasi , a dietician at TBRHSC-Renal Unit on behalf of the renal unit “Hamper Program;” Mitchel Van Kannel on behalf of the MS Society (Lake Superior Chapter) re their “Client Services Program;” and (Rev) Ray Dunn on behalf of Nu-Vision’s “multicultural Youth Counsel” working with other agencies such as TB Police and Dilico in a local Thunder Bay neighbourhood. Reverend Dunn thanked Rotarians on behalf of the whole group, and reminded us that he was a Rotary student award recipient 60 (sixty) years ago! Kevin and the club are delighted with assisting these community service partners.



At Our Club: Dec 22, 2015 

imageMaria Hudolin Past ADG (L) and Irene Sottile (R), Assistant District Governor 5580 are flanking Colin Bruce, recipient of a prestigious Paul Harris #3 pin.
Congratulations and thanks to Colin for his long time support of Rotary.

Bob Tomlinson, dressed in red, thanks Prince Arthur Hotel ‘s Richard Toffanello for yet another year of faithful service in setting up the rooms for club meetings, serving food and attending to various and sundry requirements of Rotarians. Richard announced he would like to continue in this domain another year. Thanks Richard.


Returning RYLA students Hilary MacDougall (middle) and Beth O’Neill (R), are pictured with President Darren Fisk following their presentation on their experience at the RYLA leadership camp in Crookston MN. Entitled “The Road to Leadership-Our RYLA Experience”, the girls spoke of the numerous leadership activities the camp is famous for. Working together as a team, collaboration, effective teen strategies and social skills were but some of the areas discussed. This camp is a vital part of our Rotary youth programming. The girls (with family in attendance), where encouraged to continue as ambassadors, even club facilitators.


At Our Club: Dec 8, 2015

imageimageAt this festive meeting, we warmed up to the dulcet song of our exchange student Anne-Helene Kerner, singing classic French songbook, including Vive le Vent D'hiver, accompanied by Rob Grady (L) and Kevin Holloway (R) on well practiced guitasr.


Kevin Holloway then introduced and thanked recipients of recent club allocation funding. Pictured are (left to right): President Darren Fisk, Shannon Whidden, Executive Director, TB Symphony Orchestra (for kid's music education programming); Ed Long, Prostate Cancer Support Group (for essential promotion); Ellen Orchard and Kim McNiven, LU Interprovincial Student Society (for its programming), and Kevin Holloway, Rotary Allocations Chair. On behalf of the happy recipients, (Rev) Ed Long thanked our club. This is what we do!!


Judy De Cicco, Executive Director, Thunder Bay and District Humane Society, presented today on "Take the Lead-the TB and District Spay and Neuter Clinic." She is pictured (at right along with president Fisk and colleague Sue Rob of TBDHS). Ms DeCicco is clearly passionate about animals, and the program will help tackle the large overpopulation of pets. She detailed the many impacts of overpopulation (with the logarithmic stats rather staggering),the benefits of spay/neuter clinics and early successes with the 70 dog model, being "fixed" and adopted successfully out to homes in southern Ontario.

The project is in 3 phases with the new building to become the only dedicated unit between North Bay and the Manitoba border. $2.2 M in capital funding is required. PA Rotarians are asked for support. Contact Judy at for details. Links to the presentation follow.


At Our Club: Dec 1, 2015

imagePresident-elect Vonnie Cheng chaired today's meeting and is pictured with guest speaker John Pateman, Chief Librarian and CEO of TBPL.
Though John did answer questions on the library in today's frenetic world, his specified purpose was to "enlighten" members on a special community initiative entitled the "World War 1 Thunder Bay Project."

TBPL is partnering with a number of interested groups to provide a web based portal to help us remember the role of Thunder Bay in the great (WW1) war.
John has a personal story relevance in that his home town in Kent England had an advanced hospital of 1000 beds that treated (very well) 25,000 Canadian soldiers. Of the 88 buried there, one was from Thunder Bay. Of special note, Thunder Bay is the "City of the Poppy," with the official adoption of this name taking place at the Prince Arthur Hotel, Jul 5, 1921.

John was introduced by Judi Turner and thanked by Fred Baker.  To view John's full Power Point presentation <<click here>>. John's bio is available <<click here>>.


At Our Club: November 17, 2015


Rotary Christmas Parade Information

Parade Coordinator Laurie Tulloch (left in photo) provided the club with a copy of the Parade Instructions/Emergency Plan. Please click here to download them. Laurie asked that these be read by all participants in this activity. Thunder Bay Police Sergeant Poulter (right in photo) emphasized the importance of being physically and mentally ready to work this event. As well as preparing for the weather, we are asked to study the emergency plan. He also reminded us to bring a well charged cell phone to our assigned station.


Guest Speaker at Today's Meeting

Pictured above on the left is guest speaker Marie Klassen, the Executive Director of the Lakehead Social Planning Council with Rotarian Cheryl-Lyn Lamers, who introduced the speaker. The topic for today was the community service titled '211'. This is a telephone, internet (found at and walk in service found at Victoriaville. The purpose of the provincially funded service is to provide easy access to a variety of questions an individual may have. Examples given included sources for help if you are the victim of domestic violence, to information on where is the Christmas Parade, to where am I if you were suddenly afflicted with dementia. Just dial 211 for answers. 

Also at the meeting the Oktoberfest committee announced that the profit for this year’s event was just under $10,000 with the sponsored charity of ‘Our Kids Count' to get 1/3 and our club to keep the balance. Good work Alexandra Jones and team!

We were greeted at the door today by Bonnie Moore and Bruce Nelson. President Darren Fisk started the meeting with the French National Anthem to commemorate those who suffered and lost their lives in the recent terrorist attacks in Paris. Photos and write up by Kevin Holloway.


At Our Club: November 10, 2015

imageThe club had a busy agenda today commencing with a very respectful Remembrance Day Service with members of the Thunder Bay colour guard militia including a presentation on all aspects of Canadian involvement in military actions dating from WW1 to the present deployments in the Middle East by Regimental Sergeant –Major George Romick. He is pictured on the far Right with President Darren Fisk (far Left) and our second presenters for the day (see below for description), Dr, Richard Maundrell, Chair of the Philosophy Department at Lakehead University, who introduced the key-note speaker, his colleague Dr. Steve Jobbitt , Department of History, Lakehead University (centre Left and Right respectively). Regarding the first presentation, Captain Romick was introduced by Kevin Holloway, and thanked by Lori Mitchell. Wayne Milloy played a poignant last post on trumpet.

Dr Jobbitt presented on the Refugee Crisis in Hungary and Europe. This timely topic was highly credible, fascinating and very sobering. Dr. Jobbitt had first- hand visitor experience in the very challenging (for migrants and the world) country of Hungary (Budapest and environs).The figures are quite literally mind-boggling and Canada’s albeit noble commitment to bring in 25,000 migrants is in reality a drop in the bucket. This presentation was superb and club members have requested a return visit from Dr. Jobbitt. This global phenomenon is critically important to humanity and likely to worsen going forward. Dr Jobbitt was thanked by Rotarian Bonnie Moore. To view the presentation click here.


The club welcomed back into the Rotary fold :
Jim Crooks (previously in our club) and Jeff Sampson, previously in Rotary in Sudbury.
Darren Fisk (far L) welcomed the lads : Jim (left of centre) and Jeff (far Right). That’s Chris Bailey who introdced Jim. Dave Legge (not pictured) introduced Jeff.
A hearty welcome back, boys.


At Our Club: November 3, 2015

imageThe Rotary-St. James Public School Partnership was highlighted today with Bill Everitt introducing and MCing the description and the major players involved in this project, a 4 year partnership agreement currently entering its third year. Pictured beside Bill (far 

left) in order, are: Brenda Winter (Reading Chair); Brian Thompson (Music Co-Chair); Jaimie Mintenko (Fitness Chair); Elaine Oades (current St. James Principal); Rob Grady (Music Co- Chair) and President Darren Fisk. Missing in the picture are Rob Graham (Guest speakers thanker) and Krysta Logozzo (Rotary Community Services Chair playing a big part).
St. James of interest is the alma mater of our member Dr. Jim Colquhoun (known by the students and staff as” Jim”) and one of a number of dedicated readers. Now with 165 students and a large diversity of students, many with high needs (JK to Grade 6), the school presents many challenges being tackled by a number of dedicated Rotarians involved in the four Focus Areas of Service: literacy, fitness, leadership and community engagement.
Other important groups such as the Salvation Army (breakfast program) and Public Health are partners with the school.
All of the above explained their contributions, with passion and dignity. A response of thanks and gratitude by Elaine Oades was poignant and emotional. She emphasized how important it is for relationships to be developed at different levels including mentors, staff, and the kids (often struggling) themselves.
The program has also expanded with field trips, sporting events, a purchase of snow shoes and book gifts to the kids. A formal evaluation is planned using external analysts from Lakehead University, and a program of community partnership with parents is also in the works.
The club is delighted to assist the school in this ongoing initiative.


The club welcomed back into the Rotary fold :
Jim Crooks (previously in our club) and Jeff Sampson, previously in Rotary in Sudbury.
Darren Fisk (far L) welcomed the lads : Jim (left of centre) and Jeff (far Right). That’s Chris Bailey who introdced Jim. Dave Legge (not pictured) introduced Jeff.
A hearty welcome back, boys.


At Our Club: October 27, 2015 

imageToday the club wed baseball with pride and great exposure of Thunder Bay on the world stage:
Pictured are(L to R): Rob Grady (guest introducer of Warren Philp), Jordan Lester (guest speaker), President Darren Fisk, Maria Hudolin (guests thanked), and Warren Philp (Rotarian and Executive Director-Thunder Bay International Baseball Association). What’s it all about?
The Under 18 Baseball World Cup
Thunder Bay, September 1-10, 2017,

“Thunder Bay to shine on the world stage.”

Warren and board member Jordan Lester (a former PA Rotaract leader) presented on the exciting tournament (with as much impact perhaps as the world juniors hockey tournament). They have toiled hard and long and the club members and guests were treated to a fine preview of this premier event.
Some highlights:

  • 50 games at Port Arthur Stadium and Baseball Central
  • Japan (very important) will be included this time (absent for the recent world juniors here)
  • Truly international representation
  • Major economic and tourism impact for Thunder Bay
  • Cultural events
  • Youth baseball development
  • Sister city involvement (example: Gifu, Japan)
  • Future major league stars showcased

Read more of the details of Warren and Jordan’s presentation at here.
Best wishes to Warren, Jordan and their huge volunteer crew as this huge event goes forward. It will be very gratifying.



At Our Club: October 20, 2015 

imageBrenda Winter and President Darren Fisk are pictured with Mike Wrenshall (far right) following Mike’s presentation on TedX-Thunder Bay. Mr. Wrenshall was a Rotarian in Dartmouth N.S. years ago with a diploma in “Knowitall.” Fast forward to the present as a “technology immigrant,” he has been motivated by the TED experience (which started in Silicon Valley in 1990). Topics like artificial intelligence, driverless cars and laser medical delivery systems turned on his creative juices. Technology, Entertainment, Design (TED) with over 2000 free on-line videos by bright and innovative speakers is coming to Thunder Bay, courtesy Mike and his board of local directors as Ted-X (i.e. baby TED). The theme of the Thunder Bay event at TBCA June 10, 2016 will be “what are we waiting for?” All the details are available at www.tedxtbay.comClick here to view Mike's presentation. Mike was introduced by Brenda Winter and thanked by Warren Philp.


At Our Club: October 13, 2015 


The club invited with pleasure the Dougall Media Team for Rotary Radio Day (Monday February 15th, 2016-Family Day) to meet and greet club members and celebrate 50 years with CKPR. President-elect Vonnie Cheng chaired the meeting and is seen with the Dougall Team (Left to right -Rosa Tucci (traffic manager), Linda Linklater (traffic), Daryl Bolton (producer), Brad Hilgers (program director), Stephanie Miller (marketing coordinator), Vonnie Cheng (PA Rotary), Jordan Puzzella (creative writer), Ann Snell (creative director), Bill Hogan (announcer), Andrew Poulson (creative writer) and Cora Cambly (marketing, promotions and web operations director). The scribe apologizes if any of the above are in incorrect order. Kevin Holloway spoke on many of the important allocations (charitable service funding) arising from this our most important fund-raiser. Laurie Tulloch spoke on the history of our association and connection with the late and revered Rotarian Fraser Dougall, and Jim McDonald provided fond recollections and humerous anecdotes referencing Fraser going back to days in school in Winnipeg and at Amethyst Harbour.


President-elect Vonnie Cheng along with Cora Cambly and Ann Snell are seen about to cut the celebration 50th anniversary cake.



At Our Club: October 6, 2015 


Dr. Tory Tronrud, Director, Curator and Archivist of the Thunder Bay Museum presented, today, an excellent overview of the evolution of Health Care in Thunder Bay. He is pictured here, from left to right with President Darren Fisk, President-Elect Vonnie Cheng (who introduced him), Tony Tronrud, Leslie Savitski (who thanked him) and Frank Gerry, President of the Board of Directors for the Thunder Bay Museum.


Dr. Tory Tronrud’s talk was based on the detailed Public Health records for Port Arthur and Fort William and is the theme of a current exhibit at the Thunder Bay Museum. Numerous cases and anecdotes were provided to illuminate the improvement in our local health care. Our twin cities suffered through numerous diseases, epidemics and quarantines during the past 100 years. The improvement of medical care through the discovery and availability of antibiotics, sanitation, x-rays, pasteurization of milk and even the closing of schools, churches and brothels were cited at different points in the talk. A most captivating and educational presentation for all who attended.


Click here to view The Thunder Bay Museum’s webpage. Frank Gerry, Museum Board President invited club members to a Victorian Tea at the museum to be held the last Sunday in November. He also noted that the vintage car selected for their raffle was a 1972 Corvette Sting Ray.


At the reception desk were Dave Grady (whose business recently received NOBA’s Company of the Year award) and Nicole Konkin (who will be moving to Alberta – this was her last meeting with our club - good luck Nicole!)


Laurie Tulloch- notice of the Christmas Parade to be held on Sat. Nov 21- please let Laurie know if you are not available. Kevin Holloway – Fall cycle of Allocations to commence shortly. Committee members to be verified by Krysta Logozzo. Allocation committee to meet by email to develop recommendations.

Irene Kozlowski: Next meeting we will host a large group from CKPR in preparation of the Radio Day fundraiser.

Photo and write up courtesy of Kevin Holloway.

 At Our Club: September 29, 2015 

imageReturning exchange student Christopher Donald Ruby (aka CJ) presented on his life changing year in Thailand. He is pictured in the red jacket (festooned with pins) alongside Darren Fisk (President- far left), Anne-Helene (our new Inbound Exchange student from France -centre), Mat Diegel (Exchange Student Coordinator-2nd right) and CJ’s "Mom” Marilyn Leiterman (far right).  This was an extraordinary year for CJ, a bit scared to leave (his sheltered life here), very different and matured on return. He became truly immersed in Thai culture and language, and felt almost disoriented on returning. His mantra was “ Although we are far apart, we are still under the same sky.” His experiences were exotic and there was no distracting technology like Wi-Fi (how about a monkey landing in his canoe and stealing his water supply leaving him dehydrated?) His main locus was in Chiang Mai and he had access to 27 other Rotary exchange students. The audience was quite enthralled as noted by thanker Krysta Logozzo. CJ was introduced by Mat Diegel. To view CJ s presentation , click here.



At Our Club: September 22, 2015 

imagePast President and Assistant District Governor Maria Hudolin presented an informative and entertaining primer on the Rotary Foundation. Maria is the new Foundation Chair and is pictured with President Darren Fisk (left), Jim McDonald (District Rotary Annual Fund Chair), and PP and DG Roly Turner (District Rotary Foundation Chair). Maria made it short, simple and descriptive (i.e. KISS and TELL) and with a subtitle: TRF is Our RF: a simple way to give globally.
The giving is essential to the future of the organization and can be tailored to each member’s budget. Members can contact Maria for a full disclosure of the presentation. She was introduced by Vonnie Cheng and thanked by Bill Green.


At Our Club: September 15, 2015


Carolyne Dowdell, General Manager of March of Dimes Canada, presented today along with partner, Vocational Rehab Specialist Mike Blackwood. They are pictured with President Darren Fisk. The overarching topic is provision of employment and community services to people with disabilities, of which there are many, often not obviously apparent. March of Dimes started in the 1950s, with mothers collecting dimes for polio survivors. Our speakers effectively lobbied for understanding of disability in our society, and assisting with vocational rehabilitation and employment counselling. There was a nice video entitled Rotary at Work, which highlighted the above. Our guests were introduced by Jim Mucklow and thanked by Judi Turner.


At Our Club: September 8, 2015

imageMichelle Allain, medical bioethicist at TRHSC, St. Joseph’s Care Group and the Northwest CCAC, presented, today, an excellent overview on bioethics, entitled “Ethics on Call.” She is pictured here with president Darren Fisk after the meeting. In describing the role of bioethics in health care organizations, she stressed that there are often “not simple answers.” Indeed the talk began with the famous Runaway Street Car scenario, which when altered slightly, changed (and confused) the respondent outcome evaluations. She overviewed the domains of practice, she works within, and yes agrees it’s “complex.” A robust Q & A period followed and there was rapt attention. She was introduced by Cheryl-Lyn Lameres and thanked by Dave Silliman. Click here to view the presenations. Click here to view Michelle's biography.


At Our Club: September 1, 2015


Dr. Cynthia Wesley-Esquimaux, vice-provost for Aboriginal Initiatives at Lakehead University, presented today on “Truth or Reconciliation?" As a tireless advocate for First Nations justice and equality, the talk focussed on numerous issues facing her indigenous brothers and sisters all across Canada including: the challenges for youth, the background “Great Law” and 7 Teachings, Idle (K)No(W)More, Historic Trauma, the advances at Lakehead University, the Reconciliation process, Youth vs Elders inclusion, recent successes and more. Very optimistic! There are many stereotypes however yet to be dismantled and many conversations well into the future. She pointed out for instance that there are over 11,000 indigenous Canadians with PhDs! As expected there was a very healthy Q & A session. Dr. Wesley-Esquimaux was introduced by Brenda Winter and thanked by Jaimie Mintenko. 

Click here to view Dr. Wesley-Esquimaux's bio and click here to view the presentation.


At Our Club: August 25, 2015


Senior cancer researcher Dr. Ingeborg Zehbe (2nd left), (Thunder Bay Regional Research Institute) and two of her PhD candidate students, Melissa Togtema, and Robert Jackson, are pictured with President Darren Fisk (far left) after their tripartite presentation on Human Papillomavirus (HPV): “Screening & Prevention, Basic Science and Next Generation Therapy”. Dr. Zehbe is known and respected for her close collaboration with her students, who clearly showed their own passion for this important research, involving several forms of cancer. Mr. Jackson described the basic biology of the HPV, and Ms Togtema discussed applications to potential therapies (avoiding the side effects of radiation and chemotherapy). Dr. Zehbe coordinated all aspects into a general overview, including a discussion on her projects screening vulnerable populations for HPV-related cancer. They were introduced by David Legge and thanked by an old chemistry “professor” Lauri Tulloch. Click here to view Dr. Zehbe's lab poster.


President Fisk welcomed Anne Helen, our new inbound Exchange Student from France, here pictured with host parent Jim Mucklow (Cindy Mucklow was also on hand today). The club looks forward to a great year with Anne.


President Fisk welcomed aboard our newest Rotarian, a “transfer” from the Toronto West club, Captain Lori Mitchell;  the new Executive Director of the Thunder Bay Community & Residential Services (Salvation Army). Lori is already getting involved in the Field of Greens project at site and will be a dynamic addition to the club.


At Our Club: August 18, 2015


Today’s keynote speaker was Rob Kilgour (middle), District Branch Manager of the Canadian Red Cross, assisted by Dave Wright, Transportation Co-ordinator, (to Rob’s left). Also pictured: President Darren Fisk (far left), Doug Shanks (who thanked the speakers) and Brian Thompson (far right) who introduced the speakers. The work of the great humanitarian Red Cross Service is well known internationally, but at the local level such as in Thunder Bay, the mandate includes (as tasked by the local LHIN) to provide transportation services for needy seniors (a rapidly increasing demographic). The local CRC depends heavily on volunteers to accomplish the goals set out in the presentation. Click to view Rob’s bio/ mandate  and the PowerPoint presentation. There was a direct offer to members to consider volunteering, and members were clearly interested.


At Our Club: August 11, 2015


Siobhan O’Malley, RN at TBRHSC (Labour and Delivery) and passionate dispenser of maternal and other medical aid with Doctors Without Borders (Medicin Sans Frontiers), presented today on the MSF Emergency Mission to South Sudan. This was a very moving account complete with slide show and video (see ). There was no sugar coating the realities of extreme poverty, displacement, all forms of violence and the challenge of providing health care to extreme suffering individuals. Siobhan has participated to date in 3 missions with MSF (also working in Myanmar).
She is pictured after the meeting with President Darren Fisk (far left), and her buddy from Rotary Group Exchange-Tasmania Heather Minthorn (who introduced our speaker), as well as Chris Bailey,(far right), who thanked her.

MSF ( was founded in Paris in 1971 with the broad mandate: humanitarian activities, bearing witness and speaking out, and provision of medical care. The work is onerous and dangerous, the rewards completely transformative. Ms O’Malley would go back in a heart beat. The audience were enthralled even though shocked by conditions over there. The Q & A period was lengthy as anticipated.
The club thanks Ms. O’Malley for sharing this outstanding service with us.


At Our Club: August 4, 2015

imageKishore Sakhrani (Hong Kong Island South Rotary club), delivered a wonderful address at today’s meeting entitled Canada-Hong Kong, a History of Families and Friendship. Mr. Sakhrani visits Thunder Bay every summer and attends our meetings with generous gifts and today as mentioned, a very illuminating and entertaining overview of Hong Kong. His CV is extensive, and his experience in business (MBA at Richard Ivey School of Business a part of the CV) at the international level with its contacts around the world including Thunder Bay made for a memorable address. There were a plethora of interesting factoids comparing Hong Kong and Canada (all the way from GDP growth rate to bamboo scaffolding making for efficient apartment renovations, to high finance, cost of living, and the environmental impact of cars and fast food/meat indulgence… but a sampling). Why he asks, does Hong Kong work? Simple answer-it has world class everything, and taxation is minimal (the only major drawback being high property taxes). Yes, air pollution as well. Mr. Sakhrani’s gifts were, finally, started to be auctioned off today, by Laurie Tulloch. Fine intro and thank yous were afforded by Vonnie Cheng and Warren Philp (who pleaded with Kishore to come back regularly and continue his international business diplomacy).

Click here to view the presentation. 


At Our Club: July 28, 2015


Chair (President-Elect) Vonnie Cheng is pictured with Ryan Correy (centre) and partner Sarah Hornby (right) following Ryan’s presentation on “A Purpose Ridden,” outlining his career to date as one of Canada’s most respected adventure cyclists. His first substantial ride (100 miles per day) was with his dad at age 13. He later became inspired by the amazing Terry Fox. His cycling passion became a “purpose.” Among more recent adventures: 25,000 km from Alaska to Argentina; the Race across America at over 450 km per day.

Ryan self-challenges and the extreme hardships allow him to triumph by “going the distance.”He is also a consultant/guru with Hammer Nutrition Canada, which markets science evidence based healthy nutrition for super endurance athletes. He brought along his new book ‘A Purpose Ridden” for perusal/purchase outlining the many adventures he has experienced. Ryan was introduced by Krysta Logozzo and thanked by Matt Diegel (with a preface by Jim McDonald outlining his lowest of lows in parallel). 


President-Elect Vonnie Cheng presents a $500 cheque to the Club Foundation Chair Maria Hudolin on behalf of the Sun Life Financial National Volunteer Program. Many thanks to Vonnie and Sun Life.

image President-Elect Vonnie Cheng receives a generous cheque from Bert Andreola (New Jersey, U.S.A.) of $ 500 for community work at the club’s discretion. Bert has a phenomenal record of 54 years “perfect attendance.” The club is grateful indeed. Bert was his usual humble self again today, complete with trademark tam-o’-shanter.


  At Our Club: July 21, 2015


Cathy Woodbeck, Executive Director of the Thunder Bay Multicultural Association, presented today on their diverse programming offered to assist new immigrant families ( and refugees) in Thunder Bay.  She is pictured above with President Darren Fisk. Literature cards were provided as well; in a nutshell, welcoming service helping to settle newcomers. Integrate them and adjust to their new life in Canada. Partner Agencies include: Northwest Employment Works, Thunder Bay District Health Unit, P.R.O. Kids-Thunder bay and the Diocesan Office of Refugee Services. In the early days, the focus was on refugee settlement; currently it targets connecting people to the appropriate services. There were numerous areas that the club was made aware of; examle- interpreter services for 57 languages (plus 4 aboriginal), and working with CDEC for employment opportunities. Cathy was welcomed by Vonnie Cheng ( a long time buddy) and thanked by Jim McDonald.


Rotarian Alexandra Jones is co-chairing the September 26th, newly expanded Oktoberfest in Thunder Bay. She shows off a promo sheet with President Darren Fisk. The event is an all- day affair with several partners’ events in the daytime (including Motors and Muscles and a fitness challenge with Fresh Air Experience to name just 2). The dance at night does involve, yes, beer, along with 2 bands to attract a big throng. PA Rotary has been toiling away to make this a huge success. Stay tuned.


At Our Club: July 14, 2015


Rotarian Charles Cirtwill (we think spelled correctly), is pictured with President Darren Fisk following his presentation today on the Northern Policy Institute; a complete overview. Charles is the Founding President and CEO of the very important (for Northern Ontario) independent, evidence-based think tank that makes recommendations on a wide variety of issues facing the north. Charles has a background in Political Science, Law and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration. He has found a new home in Thunder Bay having gravitated from Halifax N.S. The presentation was succinct and explained the workings of the NPI; also with a dose of reality for northwestern Ontario. As expected an appreciative audience asked numerous questions. Charles is a real credit to our club. He was introduced by Kevin Holloway and thanked by Dave Legge. Click here to view his presentation.



At Our Club: July 7, 2015


Craig Loughery (pronounced Lock’-Err-EE), 5580 District Governor presented to the club today ( his inaugural address for his district no less..we are honoured). He is behind wife and fellow Rotarian Diane (far left) and Assistant District Governor Irene Sottile (Fort William Rotary Club) as well as newly minted PA Rotary President Darren Fisk (who’s reflection confirmed he is a Mark Twain adherent)… great first meeting Darren.
DG Loughery demonstrated his oratory skills with a concise 5 part talk on: 1. Membership; 2. The District Conference in Bismark N.D.; 3. A Paul Harris Fellowship celebration with PA Rotarian Marilyn Leiterman (see below); 4. Volunteer openings at the District level; and 5. The RI theme for 2015-16- Be a Gift to the World (incorporating the classic “Service Beyond Self”). Mr. Loughery was introduced and thanked by President Fisk and Past-President Maria Hudolin.


Marilyn Leiterman’s unselfish and determined work as advocate for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (prevention and treatment), was rewarded today with a Paul Harris fellowship; here presented by DG Loughery and Past-President and ADG Maria Hudolin (well done Marilyn).


Captain Kevin Holloway along with sailors Nicole Konkin and Rene St. Jacques, ham it up in promo for this coming Thursday night’s Rotary sail at the marina. Sea Shanty practice was a big hit today. Ahoy to all mates!


At Our Club: June 30, 2015




Madame President Irene Kozlowski graciously chaired her year- end meeting today to acclaim and many a tribute. A splendid year it was, and terminated by a heart-felt reflection (the 4- Way Test) as well as many tributes to her fellow Rotarians. Brenda Winter accepts Rotarian of the Year Award from Irene Kozlowski; a very hard-working and deserving recipient. Well done Brenda! 


Irene is flanked on left by President-Elect,(taking the podium next week), Darren Fisk (congrats to you Darren) and Past-President Judi Turner (great meeting arrangement Judi).



Jim McDonald receives 3 plus year Paul Harris pin from Maria Hudolin (her 7 plus year pin awarded today), with President Irene looking on. Jim and Maria, both Past-Presidents epitomize the Rotary ideal. Congratulations to both.


At Our Club: June 23, 2015


On her second to last meeting day as President, Irene Kozlowski (third from right) was acclaimed and thanked for an outstanding year by Rotary Assistant District Governor Irene Sottile (far right).

The meeting also featured presentations of another cycle of funding allocations from our club to worthy community recipients: Mike Nitz (far left) for United Way; Margaret Hajdinjak (third from left) for the 5th Annual Out of Darkness Memorial Walk; Mary Anne Comuzzi (middle) for the George Jeffrey Children’s Centre 2015 Soapbox Race for kids; and Nadine Turcotte (second from right) for Our Kids Count –Roots of Empathy Celebration (May, 2015).

Allocations Chair Kevin Holloway ( second from left) thanked all those participating, including the worthy recipients and fellow Rotarians. There were 12 approved allocations for this Rotary year.


At Our Club: June 16, 2015


Today at Rotary three Directors: from the left  Krysta Logozzo, Brenda Winter, Laurie Tulloch  presented  reports about their portfolios. President Irene notified the Club that Leslie Savitsky and Karen Marconi (absent) will present at a later date.


At Our Club: June 9, 2015


Past President Maria Hudolin (pictured at right) spoke about her March trip to Monterrico Guatemala as part of a World Community Service project that involves District 5580 Clubs: Superior, Duluth Harbortown, Duluth 25, Fargo, Port Arthur Rotary and the Vista Hermosa Club in Guatemala. The project was the continuation of a school construction project started last year and is jointly sponsored by Districts 5580 and 4250. Total project costs were $9000 US Dollars. Maria's costs to participate in the 10 day project was $2200 US Dollars that included air fare, land costs and incidentals. Maria spoke about her 17 years in Rotary and this being the first international service project that she had been involved in. She highly recommended the experience to the audience. Maria was introduced by Acting President Brenda Winter (pictured at left) and thanked by Past President Art Warwick.


At Our Club: June 2, 2015

image image

Our club exchange student, Jitte Wigbold (the Netherlands), delivered her final address today to a large and appreciative (and emotional?) crowd of members and guests. Simply put, an outstanding year (almost completed) by an endearing and very mature student rep from her country. The club is very proud of her. Pictured with Jitte are host parents (Warren and Barb Philp—happy 25th today), President Irene Kozlowski, host parent Leslie Savitsky, and Exchange Chair Matthew Diegle.



Allocations Chair Kevin Holloway presented a round of very deserving recipients of Port Arthur Rotary funds for excellent community work. The club is pleased to support these fine organizations. Pictured are (Past-President Holloway and President Irene Kozlowski) along with:

  • Harbour Youth Services awarded for literacy, represented by program members Joanne Tomlinson (second  from far left) and Genevieve Veltri (second from far right); 
  • St. John’s Ambulance awarded for Summer Camp 911, represented by Diana Sustawenko (immediate left of centre); 
  • Walk with Doc, represented by Pat Carli (centre); 
  • North West Science Fair represented by Brienne Olibris (far right). 


At Our Club: May 26, 2015


Dr. Michael Campbell, Director of Research Operations at the Thunder Bay Regional Research Institute (and adjunct professor of chemistry at Lakehead University) returned today to follow up on the cyclotron project, now completed and ready for inaugural operations in making medical isotopes for radiopharmacy and providing a huge boost to patient care as well as research and business opportunities of major scope in the Thunder Bay area. He is flanked by Rotarian Past-President Kevin Holloway (also on the Regional Foundation Board) and President Irene Kozlowski.

The presentation covered all facets of the project including the science, the bunker site construction with research labs and production areas, and many aspects of the overall impact to the community; an astounding achievement all around. The Q &A period as expected was most informative.
“Dr. Mike” was thanked by David Legge. Is it possible to get him back yet again, that would be wonderful?For more detail, including a virtual tour, check out:


At Our Club: May 19, 2015

imageThe 2015 Rotary 4-Way Essay Contest winners are pictured here: far right is winner Madison Ranta (Grade 12, Churchill), and centre right , runner up Casey Hudyma. They are flanked by President Irene Kozlowski, Brenda Winter, Essay Contest facilitator, and President-elect elect Vonnie Cheng (who delivered an eloquent thank you) . Third place winner Amber Ziebarth (on “My Dream for Equality”) was not able to make it today.
All submissions were outstanding. Brenda Winter, in introducing the winners noted that “having students “write” is becoming unusual.” Rotary is very proud of all 3 winners.

  • Madison’s essay was on the Thunder Bay People Project, an essay coupled with a photography based survey of citizens using chalkboard responses to the question “what are you most thankful for?” She skillfully correlated her results with the 4 way test. Her presentation was very succinct, relevant and charming. Click here to read her essay.
  • Casey’s essay was on NWOSSA: Student Leadership for the Soul. Click here to read her essay.
  • Amber's essay was on equality: My Dream for Equality. Click here to read her essay.


At Our Club: May 12, 2015

image image


Hannah Smith
Eric Watson
Anton Demetrakopoulos
Jacqueline Dyck

La Verendrye 

Jessica Galarneau
Isabelle Paradis 
Brianna van Rassel
Mathew Sloan

image image

Superior CVI  

Alexandra Campbell 
Katie Plummer 
Caitlin Mundy 
Teodora Todosia

St. Ignatius

Ashley Andrea
Danielle Andrusky
Laura Liu
Jordan Niemi

Rotarian Rob Grady introduced students from the 4 north end high schools (along with their teacher reps and even a parent), who received distinction awards for volunteerism from the club. Rob read off outstanding contributions for each student. They were suitably thanked by another Rotarian (educator) Past President Laurie Tulloch. Many, many talented kids were honoured with thousands of volunteer hours tallied up. The pictures above include Rob and current club President Irene Kozlowski. Congratulations to all…future and present student leaders.


At Our Club: May 5, 2015


Guardian Angels lead for Thunder Bay Ian Hodgkinson is here pictured with Mayor Keith Hobbs. Mr. Hodgkinson delivered a truly passionate speech on his life and it’s many vicissitudes. Then a wee bit on the Guardian Angels. His lows and highs went the gamut from student days at PACI (under Principle and today’s introducer Art Warwick) to wrestling icon El  Vampiro and rock star in L.A. to a slide downward then back up as a leader of the Guardian Angels, Thunder Bay branch. A more fulsome report can be reached at A hearty round of applause followed after Kevin Holloway’s thoughtful thank you.


imageOn hand today was Jitte Wigbold and her family from The Netherlands; having a wonderful time and reunion with their daughter. Dad Erwin is seen with Mom Ellen, brother Joppe, Jitte; and host parents and family members Leslie Savitsky, and the Philps-Barb, Warren and their daughter Emily. Rotary flags were exchanged and a small ceremony was held on Remembrancer day and Liberation Day in the Netherlands.


At Our Club: April 28, 2015


Hospice Northwest ( was on full display today. Pictured (left to right: Club President Irene Kozlowski; Rotarian Mary Anne Comuzzi..generous supporter and donor; Joan Williams, Executive Director of Hospice Northwest; and Barb Philp of the Rotary family and Hospice Board member).

Warren Philp introduced his wife Barb, who outlined her interest in this fine support organization and details of the “Hike for Hospice” fundraising event at Boulevard Park, Sunday , May 3rd. She challenged the club to form its own team and church goers are ok-ed to participate. Executive Director Joan Williams then provided a clear and cogent overview of the not for profit organization (previously Via Vitae), describing it’s holistic approach to recruiting and training volunteers to assist with clients and families facing death. A brochure was circulated. Mary Anne Comuzzi spoke from her heart on the great value of Hospice Northwest and pledged a very generous sum (she was thanked appropriately). Matthew Diegel thanked the presenters, again verifying the value and need for these services.


At Our Club: April 21, 2015


President Irene Kozlowski is flanked by Jill Zachary (PP, Fort William club and international Rotary facilitator of renown) on her right, and Maria Hudolin (the very first Port Arthur Rotary Club female President as well as recent 5580 Assistant District Governor): all in a festive mood after their presentation today on the new and improved “Rotary Friendship Exchange.”

The idea of international cross-cultural exchanges by small groups of Rotarians is not entirely new, dating back to 1944. The new improved version is being rolled out in earnest at the upcoming District Conference in Duluth, MN. “Team” reciprocal exchanges would be roughly 10-12 in number (Rotarians plus/minus significant others) over 10-14 days, and “Individual” visitor exchanges are also planned (usually over about 7 days). The idea is of courser a win-win admixture of adventure, fun and best of all international experience and friendship generation with like- minded Rotarians around the world. By 2015/16 a Thunder Bay “outbound” exchange with India (Tamul Nadu and new Delhi)is in the planning stages. Full details are welcomed by contacting Jill and Maria. Les femmes were introduced by a smiling Seppo Paivalainen.


At Our Club: April 14, 2015



Confederation College President and Rotarian Jim Madder is pictured with President Irene Kozlowski.
Jim presented at today’s meeting on “the Role of Confederation College in the Northwest; What Does the Future Hold?”
The College provides varied education resources in Thunder Bay and 8 smaller campuses in 70 communities.
The major foci include:

  1. Access and Success (both very important; 1500 students graduate per year and geographic challenges are met)
  2. Aboriginal learning (over 30% of students have an aboriginal background)
  3. Serving Northwestern Ontario, but increasingly drawing from southern Ontario, example the GTA.

Jim explained the importance of “synchronous learning” and the achievements of “upgrading” students (i.e. elevating their successes from lower grade levels to graduation). Key Performance Indicators include 91% employer satisfaction and 89% student found employment..2nd in the province). There is room for more as well. 400 international students (17 countries) find their niches here.
Dr. Madder is understandably enthused. The audience were impressed and a fine Q & A period took us through the hour. Jim was introduced and thanked, suitably, by Art Warwick and Laurie Tulloch respectively.



Rotary Radio Days - CKPR

Did you buy an ad this year for Rotary Radio Days?  If you'd like to take a listen to it, you can find it on this page:


At Our Club: April 7, 2015 


The Honourable Michael Gravelle, MPP for Thunder Bay-Superior North and Minister of Northern Development and Mines, returned today for a congenial update on his government and Northern Ontario: a “summary of priorities of his Ministry.” Pictured here with President Elect Vonnie Cheng (who chaired the meeting), Michael confirmed that he “was feeling like a million bucks.” Indeed he spoke with his usual passion and looks great too. A concise overview of many northern projects was of interest; Mr. Gravelle averring that Premier Wynne has made it clear that Northern Ontario is a priority for the government. Of special interest was the recent announcement of a Northern Industrial Electricity rate program as well as a hydro rebate for low-income families. The Ring of Fire was discussed as well where significant movement has occurred; the project is not “just on hold.” Numerous other new mining projects have sprung up, that the public may perhaps be less aware of. The Q and A was relevant. Mr. Gravelle was introduced by Krysta Logozzo and thanked by Cheryl Lamers. We look forward to welcoming you back again next year, Michael.


At Our Club: April 1, 2015 

imagePast District 5580 Governor Roly Turner is flanked by wife Judi (Past President) and current Assistant District Governor Irene Sottile, at today's meeting.

Roly stepped in for current District Governor Jim Ozbun for “the shortest DG speech in history.” Perhaps, but it was concise. His overview of the many club activities and contributions to the community (both in Thunder Bay and internationality) conveyed his respect and pride for the club. This holds also individually for his spouse and ADG Irene Sottile. The address was roundly approved by members and guests.

Club Info


President Warren Philp

Message from the President Click Here 

Complete this form to join us for at our Tuesday meetings.

Looking Ahead!

Past Presidents Farewell Event: August 21st at Lakehead University Faculty Lounge, 5:30 Symposium, 6:30 Dinner

Dew Drop Inn: Port Arthur Rotary Preparing at 10:00 a.m. and Serving at 1:00 p.m.

Lakehead Rotary Terry Fox Run Sept. 16th St. Ignatius High School

Port Arthur Rotary attending Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce Member Social at Sleeping Giant Brewery Sept. 19th 5:00 pm.

Rotary Peace Day Ceremony at Marina Park (Tai Chi Garden, Prince Arthur's Landing) Saturday Sept. 22nd 11:30 a.m. (A joint venture of all Canadian Rotary Clubs in District 5580)

Rotary Shelter House Food Drive at Metro Stores: September 29/30th

Recent Guests

Aug 14th: Club Assembly: Membership Discussion

Aug 7th: Thunder Bay Regional Health Science Centre Indigenous Strategy: Tracie Smith

July 31st: Club Assembly: 2018 Rotary International Convention De-brief

July 17th: District Governor Blaine Johnson, Club Visit

July 10th: No Meeting (Fellowship Meeting instead at TBay Chill Game)

July 3rd: Presidents Induction Ceremony

  Upcoming Speakers

Aug. 21st: Offsite Meeting: Lakehead University Law School with Acting Dean Patty Smith

Aug. 28th: Thunder Bay Conservatory of Music: Michelle Zaph-Belanger

Reception Desk Roster

Arrange for a substitute if you can't attend.
  •  21-Aug-18 Lakehead University LAW SCHOOL TOUR offsite meeting

  •  28-Aug-18 Thompson, Brian; Cheng, Vonnie

 Rotary Sick and Visiting Roster 2018-19

  • September - Chris Bailey
  • October - Laurie Tulloch
  • November - Bill Everitt
  • December - Jackie Dojack
  • January - Martti Tenander
  • February - Mo Nelson
  • March - Art Warwick
  • April - Don Smith
  • May - Kevin Holloway
  • June - Pritam Lamba
  • July/August - Jackie Dojack

Prospective Members

Members are asked to sign into the secure website to check out the new Prospective Members page. 

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