PROGRAM:  What the new Tax Law means to us.
Mark Rehm and Cathy Taylor
Two of our CPA members teamed up to tell us about the changes we will see when we file our 2018 income taxes in 2019.
For personal Federal Taxes:
  • Standard deduction is increased substantially, which will cause most tax payers to not itemize their deductions.  This is expected to impact  charities.
  • Itemized deductions: 
    • Medical: over7.5%
    • Deductions for property taxes and other state and local taxes limited to $10,000.
    • Fee deductions for many other expenses are eliminated, notably especially job expenses, tax preparation expense, etc.
    • Home equity loan interest is no longer deductible; mortgage interest reduced from $1 million mortgages to $750K for new mortgages.
  • Alternative minimum tax is gone
  • Alimony paid is not deductible; income for the recipient is not reportable
  • Moving expenses are not deductible; employer paid moving expenses will be income on W-2
  • Affordable Care Act:  mandated penalty goes away in 2019
The impact on individual Colorado Taxes.  Cuts in federal deductions will lead to higher taxable income at the State level; the Colorado Legislature talking about whether to let this happen or make adjustments to make the changes tax neutral.  Best guess: Colorado will let the extra income tax happen.
Federal Business deduction:
  • 20% for qualified business income:  no definition about “qualified” yet.  This includes schedule C, S-corps and partnerships.  Limited by income (Single $157,500; Married Filing Jointly $315,000).
  • For businesses, entertainment is no longer deductible; corporate tax rate is reduced from 35% to 21%; Also, no 1031 exchange for personal property.  No charitable deduction for college donations.
Guests: Jen Clark, Conifer High School PTA
  • The CHS PTA Mind Blown Trivia Night, February 10, 6:30-10pm at Our Lady of the Pines.  Funds raised are for Technology in the Classrooms. Tables of 8 available at $15/seat. Bring your own appetizers.  Beverages available.  Tickets available on-line:;  for more info contact them at
  • Two checks were received for Back Pack Project, one from Jefferson Unitarian Church and one from Sharon Kyle (Mesa, AZ)!  Muchas Gracias!!
  • Mountain Foothills Rotary, Crutches for Africa, Chili Cook Off, Saturday February 10, 12-3pm.  Tickets are $10 ($20 at the door).  Enter your chili for $25 prior to event.  Tickets available at
  • The Conifer Interact Club Sasa Harambee fundraiser dinner is Saturday, January 27, 7-10pm at Our Lady of the Pines. Tickets are available on their website, click HERE.
  • Wes and the CHS Interactors met last weekend with Carol Carper and Joseph to discuss plans for their trip to Kenya.
  • Board of Directors meeting next Monday, January 22, 6pm at The Well at Bradford Junction.  Board members, please send your reports to President Finn.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting January 16, 2018 Charlotte Wytias 2018-01-16 07:00:00Z 0
PROGRAM:  Colorado’s Legislature is Back in Session
Colorado State Representative Tim Leonard, District 25
Tim Leonard joined us to tell us about his responsibilities as our Colorado State Representative. He is  a member of the Education, State Affairs, Audit, Veterans and Military Affairs Committees.  Tim told us that our state budget increases steadily year over year, that most money issues involve how to apportion funds rather than how much is available.  Colorado’s State Budget is ever increasing: from 15 billion to 27 billion from 2006-2016.  Our budget increased 1 billion a year on average over the last 20 years. 
Education, Health Care policy and higher education are the largest areas of increase.  For K-12, the state aid and local funding continues to rise from $1500 to over $6000/pupil.  Local money provides 1/3 of the cost.  Colorado has 900,000 pupils; private schools and home school student numbers are about 35,000.  Tim informed us about the ongoing quest for the best measure of success for evaluating the costs of education.  
There is a new perspective that vocational training is a viable alternative for students who are better suited for a career in the skilled trades. 
  • The Club Board meeting will be January 22, 2018, 6pm at The Well at Bradford Junction.
  • Please visit the businesses that have Coupon Books, collect their money for book sales and restock their inventories.
  • The Interact Club has the Warren Miller Fundraiser this Friday at Wild Game in Evergreen.
  • The Interact Sasa Harambee Fundraiser Dinner is on January 27 at Our Lady of the Pines.  Tickets are available online HERE.
  • Thanks to Kim Kaiser, Fitness and Sports, for her donation to the Back Pack Project.
  • Conifer Area Council requests that all 285 Corridor residents to fill out the community survey, click HERE for the survey.
  • Suzanne shared the news articles that she put into the Canyon Courier about Conifer Rotary fund donations to the community and the Interact Club news.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting January 9, 2018 Charlotte Wytias 2018-01-09 07:00:00Z 0
PROGRAM:  The White Elephant Gift Exchange!!
A great time was had by all!!!!
  • Saturday January 6 is the RI President’s dinner.  Go onto the District 5450 webpage to sign up.
  • Dean McCall is the Club President Elect nominee.  Congratulations Dean!  And Thanks
  • The Board meeting will be Monday January 22, 2018 at 6 pm
  • Next week’s program:  State Representative Tim Leonard of the 25th District will be next week’s speaker talking about the up-coming State Legislative session.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting January 2, 2018 Charlotte Wytias 2018-01-02 07:00:00Z 0
Program:  Sports Radio Broadcasting
Mark Johnson
Mark Johnson, recent KOA radio sports director and national sports broadcaster, joined us today and entertained us with his personal stories of events that occurred during his career.  Some of the highlights of his stories included:
  • Mark hails from North Dakota, and he is proud to share that origin with the likes of Lawrence Welk, Angie Dickenson, and Carl Wentz, the Philadelphia Eagles quarterback.
  • He started his broadcasting career at age 20 before he finished college by filling coffee cups and doing various odd jobs to support the disk jockeys at his local radio station.  After what seemed an eternity as the go-fer at the station he was finally able to sit at the microphone… as the all-night album replay announcer on Magic 96.  And that was about all he was allowed to say!
  • Mark got his big break on Thanksgiving Day, filling in for the daytime disk jockey.  He told us that his entire family and many friends tuned in to his station to listen to him.  Mark discovered that he was very anxious to do the job right, so anxious that he cued his first song incorrectly.  His debut on radio opened with an expletive, an honor he was reminded of for a long time!
  • His career took him all over the country as he moved up in the ranks as a sports announcer.  Places like Santa Barbara California, his wife’s hometown, then back to North Dakota to finish his degree.  He even found himself working for Gene Keady, the Legendary Purdue Basketball Coach.  Then he moved on to Illinois State with Gene Keady’s help, and on to Syracuse.  He called the play-by-play for their 2003 National Championship over Kansas while Carmello Anthony was on the team.
Mark and his family have lived in Denver 14 years, and after 13 years at KOA Radio iHeartMedia budget cuts removed him from his position as Sports Director this past Spring.  He will remain as sports announcer for Colorado Buffaloes on KOA radio and is moving on to teach broadcasting at the University of Colorado.
  • No meeting next Tuesday December 26th.  Enjoy the Christmas Holiday.
  • Gift exchange meeting on January 2nd, Mark Rehm will be our Master of Ceremonies.
  • At the Board meeting on Monday the 18th Dean McCall accepted a nomination to become our 2019-20 Club President after Janine Payton's term.  Other nominations for the 2019-20 President position are still open, please contact a Board member.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting December 19, 2017 Lee Willis 2017-12-19 07:00:00Z 0
Program:  What’s Happening up in Space:  NASA Missions
Dean McCall
Our own Dean McCall shared more information regarding exciting advancements in the space industry.  Download his presentation from our club website in the file downloads tab, or simply click here, Dean's Presentation.  It also has web links to interesting internet sites.
Dean explained the importance of being able to search the entire electromagnetic spectrum in our quest to learn more about space.  He shared some of the results of a recent space launch that uses of microwaves to measure water vapor on the earth.  The electromagnetic spectrum can give science a picture of what is happening in the world of space.    For example, gamma and x-rays give scientists information about active galaxies, remnants from massive dying stars, and accretion of matter around black holes.  Longer wavelengths of the spectrum see dark, cool, obscured objects, dusty star-forming areas, etc.  Being able to examine the entire spectrum also enables us to identify space junk, meteoroids and micrometeoroids.  This helps us understand the universe and how we can use that knowledge to benefit us on earth.
Our solar system has more than the sun and planets.  It includes the asteroid belt, outer planets, Kuiper belt (contains our outer planets), and the Oort cloud---billions of comets that are part of our solar system. 
Although NASA currently does not send humans into space, it is still very active with programs in space.  These include:
  • Discovery (Deep Impact; Kepler—looking for exo-planets, some of which could sustain life)
  • New Frontiers (New Horizons—just went past Pluto and learned a lot of new information and now is looking beyond Pluto)
  • Solar System Exploration (looking for near-earth asteroids).  Objects in space that could impact earth with catastrophic consequences.  The technology currently exists to redirect those objects if they are found.
These programs are far less expensive than the manned space missions.  They provide scientific exploration, and many of these missions can be re-purposed when the primary mission is complete.
  • MAHGS:  Janine updated us on the planning, we are well ahead of last year's show.  Sponsors are the current focus.
  • Visioning:  Please review the jobs sheet and determine where you can best help the club.
  • 285 Back Pack Project:  The PCCP Resale-Boutique and Bailey presented an additional $250 for the 285 Back Pack Project, for a total this year of $2775!
  • Suzanne gave a quick report on Choose Outdoors and the Capitol Christmas Tree lighting in Washington D.C.  Choose Outdoors works with the Forest Service to select the tree---this year from Montana---and move it to the Capitol.  Choose Outdoors is an organization that was founded by Bruce Ward, former Conifer Rotarian.
  • The Holiday Party:  6:00PM this Friday, December 15, at Dean and Lenore McCall’s home.  Bring an ornament for the Peace Shelter tree. If you haven’t signed up, please contact Suzanne.
  • The Fitzsimmons Middle School Interact Club has a project to write and send Holiday Cards for our military in Afganistan.
  • The Conifer High School Interact Club and peer counselors raised money for Shelter Boxes (,  $810.85.
  • Interactors’ fund-raisers have a link for their events on our club web-site.  The funds raised will help send the students to Kenya this summer. They will be building a playground for handicapped children, and they will be taking shoes for handicapped kids and school supplies.
  • The evening club has a project providing copies of the Constitution for 5th graders.
  • MRC Christmas party will be this Saturday.  Volunteers are needed.
Rotary Cub of Conifer Meeting December 12, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-12-12 07:00:00Z 0
Program:  Health Care in America
Hugh Macauley, MD
Our own Hugh Macaulay talked with us about his profession.  It started with two doctors he met who were significant influences on his choice of a career:  Albert Sweitzer, who  came to the US to do a presentation at the Aspen Institute and Dr. Tom Dooley who was a missionary in Laos.
Hugh started with a Family Medicine residency and practiced for several years as a family doctor.  He then went into Emergency Medicine for 15 years in North Carolina, Aspen, and Denver.  As an ER Doctor he obtained a great deal of experience in drug and alcohol treatment.  He later chose to move on to Occupational Medicine in order to improve his work hours and have more family time.   That is a field that deals with very difficult patients, many of whom are addicted, coming out of prison, and often manipulative.  In his career, Hugh experienced the very wealthiest people in Aspen to some of the poorest In his Occupational Medicine practice. 
Hugh reviewed the history of medicine, from the earliest folk medicine to the codification of care in Egypt.  The evolution of modern medicine began with Galen in the pre-renaissance period.   In the early 20th century, Dr. Osler started a residency program in the US and doctors stayed at the hospital 24-7.  There was a specific curriculum and guidelines for practice.  In 1917, the Flexner report came out.  Standards for medicine were developed and regulated.  In the 1960-70’s the idea of diagnosis related care (DRG’s) was developed by the government, which related to payments.  Evidence-based medicine developed about that time, using scientific medicine research data.
Interestingly, the biggest contributor to improved American health was indoor plumbing.  Present day medical care is not based on relationships that have the greatest impact on an individuals health.  Now, it is technology and its use. 
Medical care is a commodity.  Questions that must be answered:  How can we allocate medical care?  Do we ration?  By price?  By availability? By wait time?
Guests:  Brett Rohr
Induction of New Member:  Dee Profitt
She is a staff member at Our Lady of the Pines.  Susan Imming is her Rotary mentor.
  • The Coupon Book sale was very successful at King Soopers last Friday.
  • The summer fundraising event planning is in process; committee is working to select an appropriate venue.
  • St. Patrick’s Day fundraiser is in planning; more to come.
  • The Christmas Party will be Friday December 15, 6pm at the McCall home.  Dean will send directions and Suzanne is managing the sign up for food.
  • The MRC holiday party needs volunteers and Marlis set up a Sign-up Genius site for us.  The date is Friday and Saturday December 15, 16.  Volunteers are needed both days, click the Sign-Up Genius link HERE to see where and when you can help.
  • Please fill out the Community  Survey by the end of December; just click this link: Conifer Community Survey.
  • A new community events center is planned for a site on Windy Point.
  • Bell ringers are needed for the Salvation Army, click HERE for the Sign- up Genius or call Angela.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting December 5, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-12-05 07:00:00Z 0
Program:  Interact Report, and Grant funds to West Jefferson Middle School
W. Jeff Middle School :  $1000, to be divided among:
  • Sets of books for conflict resolution
  • Program for teachers teaching teachers
  • Construction models for 8th graders
  • Life skills class for special needs students
  • Expectations banners for student behavior
  • Document Scanner
The Conifer High School Interact report:
Alyssa, the club President, told us what Interact means to her.  She is inspired by the previous “generation” of Interactors at Conifer High School, especially their work trip to Nepal.  As she moved into her senior year, she wanted students to have a meaningful experience with community service.
The Conifer High School Interact Club currently has 40 members who are all dedicated to the club's support projects.  On the International front, 14 Interact students plan to travel to Kenya June 4-19, 2018 to construct a playground for disabled children at the organization developed by Rotarian Carol Carper, Sasa Harambee.  Locally, their projects include:  Carnival for the Children’s Hospital; Conifer Christmas Parade; Colorado Trail project; Polio awareness at Conifer High School; Hurricane relief—funds to provide a shelter box.
The Interact Club recently created a video about their club, and they have their own website.  Check them out at
  • Rotary District 5450 State of the State with Governor Hickenlooper and luncheon will be December 7, 12pm.  Tickets are $60, available on District 5450 website.
  • Coupon Book Sales will be at King Soopers this Friday, December 1, 3-8pm.  Please sign up on Sign up Genius or contact Charlotte.
  • Wes has 2017-18 Rotary Logo pins for anyone who needs one.
  • Zuni Signs is donating Rotary Club signage for installation on US 285 at the Conifer town limits; Susan Imming will check with CDOT to get permission.
  • Interact Fund-Raisers for Kenya Trip:
    • Warren Miller ski film at Wild Game, January 12 at 7pm
    • Sasa Harambee dinner Jan 27 at our Lady of the Pines
    • The 5th Annual Run the Ranch 5K, June 2nd at 8am at Beaver Ranch
  • The planning meeting for the summer fund-raiser will be at Wes’s home at 6pm Wednesday evening.
  • The Mountain Resource Center Christmas Party will be held December 16. There is a sign up genius.
  • The Rotary Club Holiday Party is December 15 at 6pm at Dean and Lenore McCall’s.  Suzanne will provide a written sign up next week.  Meat and beverages will be provided.
  • Please follow-up on the Visioning Sign-up for Club responsibilities. 
  • Next week’s Program:  The State of Health Care, Dr. Hugh Macauley
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting November 28, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-11-28 07:00:00Z 0
Program:  The Beneficiaries of Rotary Grants
Mountain Resource Center, Nurturing Parenting Education: $700   The Parenting Program provides education and support for family and child needs from birth to graduation.  MRC provides services that empower people, over 15,000 were served last year
PeaceWorks:  $1200.  Started in 1981 to provide emergency shelter services to children and adults in domestic violence situations.  Peaceworks is one of the rare facilities that includes pets; there are only 60 in the entire country.  The grant will cover donor data management in order to track donations and volunteer information.
West Jefferson Elementary School:  $900, matched with an additional $900 grant of $900.  The Rotary grant funds will provide more new books that the children can check out to take home.  Each book  will have a book plate that identifies that Rotary provided the books purchased from the grant.  There will be Rotary designated shelves to house the books.
Guests:  Dee Profitt, Curt Harris
  • December 7, 12pm – State Of the State, Governor Hickenlooper and District 5450 at the Denver Tech Center Marriott.  Tickets: $60, available through Denver Southeast Club.  Click HERE for tickets.
  • Rotary International President Dinner and polio fundraiser, January 6, 5:30 at Denver Marriott South, Lone Tree.  Tickets $75. click HERE to buy.
  • 285 Coupon Book Sales update: Coupon Books are available.  We will be selling at the King Soopers Friday December 1, 3-8 pm.  The $5 sale of the books goes to the Back Pack Project.  For folks who want to support Back Pack but don’t want the books, their $5 donation would purchase a book to go into the back packs for Christmas.
  • Summer event Planning Meeting – Wednesday Nov. 29, 6pm – Wes’s house.  The event will be a Country Western theme.  Come on down!!!!
  • January 12, 2018, A Warren Miller movie night at Wild Game in Evergreen will be sponsored by the Conifer Interact Club and VW USA.  The funds raised will go to help the Interact kids go to Kenya.  Buy tickets at the Interact website by clicking HERE
  • Christmas party Friday Dec. 15, 6pm. at Dean’s house.  Main course will be provided.  Sign-Up Genius will be available for food sign up. More details coming.
  • Visioning updates – Members input and leadership. The Visioning follow-up will be organized by Mark and Hugh and will be presented soon to the Club for planning for the next 3 years.
  • Banners stitched with the Clubs’ flags – A big thank you to Leslie.
  • The MRC Christmas party will be Saturday December 16; they need set up help on Friday December 15, 3-5pm.
  • The Three Interact Clubs now have their own t-shirts, donated by Mark Rehm’s businesses.  Thank you, Mark!
  • Please fill out the Conifer Community Survey on-line;  Ed emailed the link to all Conifer Rotarians.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting November 21, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-11-21 07:00:00Z 0
Click HERE to go to the Conifer Interact (Rotary Club for Youth) website Projects page and buy tickets  for the  Sasa Harambee Dinner on January 27th.  Income will help fund the Conifer High School Interact Club Students service project trip to Kenya this summer.
Interact Fundraiser Tickets Online Lee Willis 2017-11-19 07:00:00Z 0
GIVING AWAY!!! Grant Recipients
Team Blitz, Conifer High School Robotics Club:  $1250.  Besides creating robots for national  and international competitions, the Club does a number of community volunteer projects and are starting to do fund-raising for other organizations. The Rotary grant helps to purchase the computing hardware and software, robot kits and consumable supplies, tools and tool storage.  They have 27 students and 9 mentors. 
Mount Evans Home Care and Hospice: $2400 for Camp Comfort; $1250 for Bereavement services.  Grief and Bereavement Programs serve people in need, whether they have a loved one who has been served by Mt. Evans.  These programs are not funded or reimbursed by medical insurance, so the donations and grants from the community are critically important. 
Camp Comfort was started 26 years ago and provides a camp for children who have suffered loss.
Stage Door Theater: $1200. This grant provides scholarships for kids participating at Stage Door.  It is a program that changes lives—gives them a launching pad for their future.  It provides education, discipline and personal growth and confidence.
  • District 5450 the State of the State Luncheon with Governor Hickenlooper.  The mother of Dylan Klebold will be doing a presentation Thursday, December 7. Presentations start at 8:30 a.m:  Mental well-Being Symposium; there will be a mental health and wellness expo; Lunch is 12-1:30.  $60.  Register at DSEROTARY.ORG.
  • District 5450 invites all members to the Rotary International President’s Dinner and Polio Plus Fundraiser January 6, 2018, 5:30 cash bar; 6:30 dinner, $75.  The Keynote speaker is Rotary International President, Ian Riseley.
  • The 285 Cooridor Coupon Book is available and Rotarians need to sell!  Get yours are the meeting next week.  We hope to have a time to sell at the King Soopers in the next couple of weeks.
  • The planning meeting for next summer’s fund-raiser will be the Wednesday after Thanksgiving at Wes’s home.  We will need Rotarians helping with the planning.  Watch for Wes’ email.
  • The District Interact convention was held earlier in the month.  We had a group from Fitzsimmons Interact attend.
  • The Conifer Town Hall meeting will be tomorrow, November 15, 7pm at W. Jeff Middle School.  We will be selling coupon books.
  • The Holiday party will be December 15 at Dean’s home. More information to come.
  • The Board meeting will be next Monday at 6pm at the Well at Bradford Junction.
  • There were 255 Soldier boxes prepared to ship.  Thanks to all who donated and helped fill the boxes for shipment.
  • There will be a fund-raiser for the summer trip to Kenya by our Conifer HS Interact students.  They will be building a handicap playground and will provide special shoes for the children.  Watch for more information about the fund raiser.
  • The International Committee will be meeting tonight 11/14/17  to discuss global grants.  Pat will represent our Club.
  • We need someone to make coffee for our meeting the next two weeks.  Please let Mark know if you can provide that help.
  • Finn has prepared an excel spreadsheet with responses to the Visioning follow-up. Please send Finn your responses.  This is the most important next step from the Visioning.
  • Conifer High School had Sadie Hawkins week---thanks to the Elk Creek Fire Department for providing a bonfire.  They enjoyed a sock hop.
  • There will be a NASA launch from Vandenburg Air Force Base tomorrow at 2:47 a.m.  Go to the NASA website to be able to watch!  Thanks, Dean.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, November 14, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-11-14 07:00:00Z 0
November 7, 2017
Program: Ted Ming
On Climate Change: the Climate Reality Project
Ted has been training with Al Gore, helping to grow awareness of climate change.
These are the questions we must ask:
Must we change? Can we change?  Will we change?
In photos we determine that our atmosphere is very thin.  The gases that humans produce create a “blanket” that allows heat to stay within the atmosphere rather than being projected back to space. 
CO2, one of the major gases caused primarily by human kind is being released into the atmosphere more rapidly than at any time in the earth’s history. Every decade since 1950, the curve of heating of the planet is expanding exponentially.   The average annual temp has risen 2 degrees in Colorado in recent years. 
Besides the wind-chill index during the winter, there is now a heat index that combines temperature and humidity.  Some areas in the Middle East and Africa are becoming uninhabitable because of the rise in the heat index.  Over 20 million people are nearing starvation in those regions.
Heat is increasing the temperature of the oceans, creating more powerful hurricanes.   And the cloud masses around the planet have generated another new term: “atmospheric rivers”—bucket loads of water falling from clouds. 
Extreme weather conditions are increasing rapidly year to year.  Heat waves, fires, drought and increased beetle-kill are affecting Colorado.  The fire season is 105 days longer now than in 1970!  For every degree of warming, lighting strikes increase by 10% and are a major source of wildland/urban interface fires.  And ground water is being depleted, which will decrease water for irrigation for our crops.
The health of humans is being affected by the rising temperatures.  Heating is increasing the spread of mosquito-borne diseases.  Heat exhaustion is becoming more common due to the high temperatures.  Air pollution is causing more death
More flooding is occurring along shorelines, affecting cities along the coasts.
We are at a decision point in our history:  There are solutions:  green energy progress—wind (on one day, 66% of the Colorado energy needs were supplied!).  Solar—Colorado could increase electric capacity via solar by 350%.  There is enough energy in one hour on earth to provide energy for a year!
Will we change?  What can we each do to meet the challenges?
Ted recommends a book by Paul Hawking:  Drawdown—a book to read to learn of all the ways to ameliorate global warming.
Guests: Dee Profitt (prospective member), Tom Landon
Rotarian members present:
Pat Hagan, Marlis McAllister, Janine Payton, Finn Knudsen, Leslie Landon, Yvonne Lipson, Dean McCall, Jesse McKean, Charlotte Wytias
  • The Club social last week was a big success at Twin Forks restaurant. Thanks to Janine Payton for arranging this event!  The food was great.  Service superb.  Conversations energizing!
  • Registrations are open for the State of the State luncheon and for the RI President’s visit.  Go to the District 5450 Website for more details and to sign up.
  • Thanks to Coupon Book sellers!  We sold 69 books and made $345!  Thanks Janine, Wes, Wendy, Art, Pat, Charlotte. Thanks to Principal Wes for arranging the front door venue!!!
  • The Board meeting will be Monday November 20; Board reports are due to Finn by Monday Nov. 13.
  • The Conifer Rotary Holiday party will be the week of December 11; more information to come.
  • We have a number of Club Flags to be sewn to our banners---Leslie volunteered to help
  • Finn would like to hear from all members about their thoughts on the visioning process and steps for moving forward! 
  • The Rotary Club has been invited to present material and information to the Conifer Chamber of Commerce this Friday at the 7:15 a.m breakfast meeting at Brooks Place.  Finn is preparing information for the Chamber power-point which will feature not-for-profit organizations in the community, as well as an information sheet that will highlight all the organizations which receive support from the Conifer Rotary.  The “invitation-business” card will be stapled to these info sheets—inviting more community members to join Rotary!
Rotary Club of Conifer, Meeting, November 7, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-11-07 07:00:00Z 0
PROGRAM:  Our Visioning Action Plan
President Finn will send the document under a separate mailing to all members
Guests: Dee Profitt
  • Today is World Polio Day!
  • We will be dark (no meeting) next week.  The Club social will be at Twin Forks Restaurant, 285 and S. Turkey Creek Rd, next Wednesday, November 1 at 5:30.
  • Finn attended the Rotary Leadership Institute.  He recommended that all in the Club attend the Institute.  It provides the opportunity to learn all about this amazing organization!
  • Robert Smith, President of Clear Creek Rotary, shared the importance of wearing our Rotary pins wherever we go.
  • The Area 8 Presidents met last night.  They spoke about promoting Peaceful Schools program and information about the Global Grant that Clubs in our District 5450 will make together.
  • The State of the State Luncheon, featuring the Colorado Governor, will be December 7; there is a link on our club calendar and more information on the District website.
  • Next summer the RI Convention will be held in Toronto, it is on our club calendar. 
  • The RI President’s visit will be January 6 at the Denver Marriott South, Lone Tree.  It is a major fund-raiser for Polio Plus.  There are links to more information available on our club calendar.
  • The District Conference will be held May 19-20 at the Hyatt Denver Tech Center.
  • The Conifer Rotary Foundation will be planning an event for next summer.  The big planning meeting will be at Wes’s home at 6pm, Wednesday October 25.  The date and venue will be determined at that time.
  • The District 5450 Interact Conference will be held Saturday, November 4 at 7200 Quebec Pkwy, Commerce City from 9am to 3:30pm.
  • Students from Conifer HS will be collecting items for The Soldier Box at King Soopers tomorrow evening.
  • November 4 is the Conifer Neighbors and Newcomers Christmas Bazaar at Conifer High School.  Conifer Rotary will have a booth to begin the sales of the new 2017-18 285 Corridor Coupon Book.  Please sign up to man our booth at the Twin Forks social Wednesday Nov. 1. 
  • The Conifer HS Rotary Interact Club will be doing an International Project in Kenya next summer with 14 students signed up.  The group will be led by Wes Paxton and Joey Wilson.  Their projects include:
    • Build a play ground for disabled children (the 3 Interact Clubs sponsored by Conifer Rotary have raised the money for this project!)
    • Provide corrective shoes for kids with foot and leg disabilities
    • Provide school supplies
Each Conifer student must raise $3000!!  They have a fun-d raising event planned for January---it will be a community dinner.  More information to come.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting October 24, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-10-24 06:00:00Z 0
Program:  Our Vision of Our Club!
Look for the review and the power point
  • Charlotte visited the Clear Creek Rotary to talk about how to start a Back Pack Project.
  • The State of the State Rotary Luncheon presented by  Gov. Hickenlooper, December (see the District website for more details)
  • The RI President’s visit is January 7, 2018.  See details on the District webpage.
  • Please pay your dues as soon as possible
  • The Board met last night; preparation for the visioning was the primary topic.
  • The Club Social will be held at Twin Forks Restaurant (S. Turkey Creek off 285) November 1 at 5:30.  This will be in lieu of the regular meeting on October 31.
  • The Flume published a story about the RYLA kids presentation to the Rotary Club.
  • Mark Rehm’s company is purchasing Interact Club t-shirts.  Thank You!
  • The grant-writing process to the District yielded the Rotary 150 that will put a book shelf with Rotary donated books in the W. Jeff Elementary School.  Rotarians will also volunteer to read to kids.
  • The Conifer Club will give out grants to our 9 grantees Nov 14, 21 and 28.
  • Fourteen Conifer Interact Club students are signed up to go to Kenya this summer.  They will be taking school supplies and building a playground for handicapped children.
  • The Fund-raising committee has a meeting at Wes’s home October 25, 6pm. We are looking at the prospect of a western-theme BBQ next year.
  • The Back Pack Project and Stage Door will be collaborating to raise money for shoes for Back Pack kids.
  • The Coupon book is going to press this week and it will be back for the community Holiday party at Conifer High School; we will need volunteers to man a table to start sales.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting October 17, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-10-17 06:00:00Z 0
PROGRAM:  Celia Fenton, Office Manager, Senior Resource Center
The Center was started in 1978 and serves people 60 years of age and older out of the “Yellow House” on Hwy 73 in Evergreen.  The Mission:  Seniors’ Resource Center is a community partner providing person-focused, coordinated services to enhance independence, dignity and quality of life.  It is a one stop shop for senior services in rural Jefferson, Park, Gilpin and Clear Creek counties.
Services include:
  • Senior day care and respite services,
  • Care management services (case management, referrals, financial assistance, nutritional programs, monthly commodities, government program application assistance),
  • Evergreen Call-n-Ride, In Home Care Services,
  • Volunteer services (friendly visitors, bill payer program, volunteer drivers, tech assistance, meals on wheels),
  • Nutrition serivices,
  • Housekeeping/cleaning services,
  • Chores services (deep cleaning, yard work, home repair and carpet cleaning),
  • Transportation services Monday-Friday, and
  • Community solutions (group trips for events).
There is a charge for services, but DRCOG and Veterans Services can pay for the services.  Some services have no charge.  Seventy-five to eighty percent of funding comes from government and other grants; donations also help support the programming.  There are over 500 volunteers who serve the programs who offer a wide variety of assistance for individuals, help with fund-raising, driving, etc.
GUESTS: Bill McLaughlin, Fire Chief, Elk Creek Fire Dept
  • Rotary District 5450 Events
  1. State of the State, December 7, 2017 with Governor John Hickenlooper
  2. January 6, 2018: International President’s visit and Polio Plus fund-raiser
  • Mt. Evans Home Care and Hospice:  Health Care update for Stake-Holders at DW  Diner, 5:30-7pm Wednesday October 11
  • Cathy has sent the invoices for Rotary Dues; please pay as soon as possible.
  • Board meeting next Monday 6pm.  Board members please send your report to Finn as soon as possible.
  • The Visioning report and planning process will be held at the next two weeks’ meetings.  It is important that everyone attend to share your insights into how the Club should move going forward.
  • The 5th Tuesday Social for this month will be held at Twin Forks Restaurant on November 1, 2017, 5:30pm. 
  • The Chipping Program of Elk Creek Fire Dept is free and will come directly to the homes in the District.  It is funded by a grant from the Forest Service.  Call the Fire Department to schedule a visit.
  • Clear Creek Rotary is hosting our Back Pack Programs (the 285 Back Pack Program and Mountain Back Packs in Evergreen) at the Idaho Springs Rotary meeting this Friday.  They are interested in starting a Back Pack Program for the students in Idaho Springs.
  • The Soldier Box for donations to be sent to deployed military will be at our meetings through October.  Please bring toiletries, personal care items, a personal Christmas card.  Volunteers will be needed to put together the boxes for shipping.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting October 10, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-10-10 06:00:00Z 0
 Program: Mending Colorado’s Mental Health
Andrew Romanoff, President of Mental Health Colorado
Rotarian in Aurora
Colorado has one of the states with highest suicide rates in the country—over 1000/year. 
The obstacles in addressing mental illness:
  • How do we define mental illness?  One out of four in the population has experienced some form of mental illness; the problem is that many are not officially diagnosed with mental illness.  The rate of diagnosis is probably why the numbers seem to have grown recently.  Adolescence is when symptoms are most likely to appear.   Addressing the problem is not being done even when a diagnosis is made.  There are 8-10 years from the first appearance of symptoms to treatment.  Nearly ½ million people are untreated in Colorado. 
  • Pre-existing conditions may not be covered
  • Cost: the number one reason
  • Insurance doesn’t cover the plan or providers are not availble (the ACA does cover mental health services)
  • Stigma: worried if others find out or embarrassed about “personal” information being shared
  • Denial by the person with the symptoms
Mental Illness is a huge expense, with depression being the biggest cost.
Homeless adults are frequently suffering from mental illness.
Most of the treatment for mental illness in Colorado is “done” in prisons, a very expensive and ineffective means for treatment.
Americans with severe mental illness are living 25 years less than the general popoulation: suicide (8% of students have committed suicide; 17% have considered suicide). 
  • Colorado Crisis Services 844-493-8255.  A mental health professional is available for  (text 38255) persons in crisis or for families.
  • Mental Health First aid Colorado:  training to be familiar with symptoms and appropriate responses.  Jefferson Mental Health offers the 8 hour training course. 
  •  There is a site for identifying symptoms---a screening on-line that also includes potential assistance.
  • Mental health professionals need to be on-site at all the schools in the State. 
  • Can we re-name “mental illness” to de-stigmatize?
  • Join the “Brain-Wave”---to be advocates for mental health to get funding for programs and services: go to
Guests: Lenore McCall, Gail Sharp
  • Gail’s business, Tallgrass, since 1999 sends boxes of personal care items for soldiers who are overseas.  Last year, Tallgrass sent over 200 boxes, each with individual boxes for the soldiers, both men and women.  Gail also provides Christmas cards so that we can write personal cards to a soldier. The box to collect items will be at our Rotary meetings for the whole month of October.  The boxes cost $17.50/box---so donations are appreciated; make checks to Tallgrass. 
  • Last week’s RYLA report included 5 of the 7 students.  The students all mentioned that they can not judge others by appearance or first impressions.
  • Evergreen Rotarian Wayne Lundhagen passed away; .
  • Carol Carper’s husband passed away Saturday.
  • This Saturday is the District W.A.S.H. symposium; more information on the website.
  • October 11, 5:30-7pm Mt. Evans is having the stake-holder gathering at DW diner—it will be informational for the community.  Go to for more information and register.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting October 3, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-10-03 06:00:00Z 0
Program:  Educational Challenges
Superintendent Jefferson County School District
There are three issues:  keeping teachers; communication with the community; turbulence in recent past and the re-building.
There have been partisan politics which he hopes to address by bringing different perspectives together.  He has prepared a plan: 
1) Learning!—the most important focus.  Content is important, but integrating learning with skills, problem solving, and creativity will give students a chance to practice what they will need as adults.  Teachers will hand the process back to students so that they are involved in their own learning.
2) International bench-marking uses high-performing countries, states and cities that provide a model to determine what can be integrated into our system.  Their focus is on the students’ learning, high quality and well respected educators. 
3) Preparing the youngest to be ready for learning.  Make sure kids are as healthy as possible and that their lives are as ordered and safe as possible in order to learn when in school.
What will hinder achievement?  1) Historical inertia---schools are “factories”, learning is repetitive, learn/recall, rather than creating an atmosphere where kids can expand their perspectives.  2) The Distractions:  “silver bullet reforms”—as in test-based evaluation.
How to hire the best staff?  With compensation as it is?  Make it a desirable field and get the best people.  Determine how to make salaries competitive.  Make Jeffco culture desirable so teachers won’t leave. 
What would be the impact of a four-day school week?  The costs to the district would be reduced.  For children, it would reduce their experiences that are important. 
Can the focus of education be expanded to include technical training/trades?  Focus on college is no longer the best option for students; there need to be other pathways for kids wanting to follow a different career.  European systems allow kids to follow distinct pathways, depending on their talents and interests.  There may be an expansion of the Warren Tech experience, even including working with professionals in the community. 
What about requiring pre-school and kindergarten?  There are more programs being developed to provide different options, including in-home and private centers as well as growing programs within the school district. 
Guests: Ron Mitchell, President of the Board of the Jeffco School District
  • Members, please plan to visit another Rotary Club
  • Tomorrow evening, the RYLA kids will be doing a presentation about their RYLA experience.  Dinner will be at 6pm at MRC.  It is the evening Club’s regular meeting.
  • The “Treasure” Sale was successful and cold on Saturday.  We expect to clear $900.
  • Gail Ridings will come next week to talk about the Soldiers’ Boxes event.
  • There is a Foundation meeting to talk about the grant applications.
  • Next summer we will do a FUNd-raiser August 11 or Sept 15.  It will be a Country Western theme.  The next planning will be October 25 at 6pm at Wes’s home.
  • The Back Pack project will be expanding to include food pantries at the Middle and High Schools. 
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting September 26, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-09-26 06:00:00Z 0
Program:  The Jefferson County Sheriffs Department
Sheriff Jeff Shrader, Officer Janie Gonda
What keeps our Sheriff up at night?—the always present need to meet unknown experiences that happen every day.   There are 550,000 people in Jefferson County (JeffCo), with projections of 680,000 in 20 years.  He uses these data to determine the need for personnel, jail capacity and other infrastructure/personnel.  Some current issues:
  • The County Jail accommodates 1280; the current population is 1372; the safe capacity is 1400.  We are experiencing an increase in violent crimes, especially in un-incorporated Jefferson County.  The cost to replace our jail would be just under $1 billion. 
  • Growing problem: opioid addiction.  There were 60 opioid related deaths last year.  Narcan is now in every patrol car; but JeffCo does not have enough opioid deaths to qualify for federal funds. 
Some 'good' news, the Family Justice Program.  Domestic violence offenders are in the jail population; the DA office and Sheriff established a Family Justice Center to join service partners with victims needing help.  It includes the law enforcement officers, the justice system and human services. In communities where Family Justice Centers are available, related homicides have been reduced by 50%!  In JeffCo, there are officers specifically trained and assigned to the Family Justice program.
Officer Janie Conda talked to us about crime prevention.  An asset to Jefferson County is the JeffCo Business Academy, providing safety tips, security assessments and training.  Assessments can be done for private homes.  There is a training course October 12, 19, and 26, 8-10 AM in the Sheriff’s Complex.  If you would like to attend, contact Janie at:; 303-271-5807.  The course topics will include:  theft prevention, “Run. Hide. Fight”, counterfeit bills, shoplifting, burglary and robbery, and security assessments.
An additional offering from the Sheriff's Department is the Citizen's Academy, which orients people to the sheriff’s department and provides law enforcement training/education.
Guests:  Tom Becker
  • The Treasures Sale is this Saturday.  Donations will be accepted Friday 5-8PM.  More volunteers are needed; sign up thru Sign-Up Genius HERE, or contact Susan Imming, Yvonne Lipson or Lesley Landon.
  • The Mountain Home and Garden Show is looking for sponsors.  Speak with Suzanne or Janine.
  • Ed Steinbrecher is requesting assistance with a birthday party for his wife Sunday October 1st at 4PM at Center for the Arts, Evergreen.  He will make a donation in the name of Rotary helpers to the Conifer Rotary Foundation.
  • The Visioning follow up with be October 17 and 24 during our regular meeting.  There will also be a report given to the evening group.
  • Hurricane disaster relief donations can be made through our club foundation on the Rotary Conifer website.  Our donations will go to RI hurricane relief.
  • Thanks to Mat Matson and Audrey Matson for a Rotary Club flag from Mt. Pleasant, SC.
  • The Conifer High School raised $340 for hurricane relief at the football game last week.  They will continue to raise money at their games.
  • Mount  Evans Home Health Care and Hospice is hosting a Stakeholders meeting October 11, 2017, 5:30-7 pm at DW Diner in Conifer.  Appetizers and beverages will be provided.  The program will focus on the current state of home health care, hospice and palliative care in Colorado as well as the direction of health care/health insurance in the USA.  RSVP:
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting September 19,2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-09-19 06:00:00Z 0
NO MEETING NEXT WEEK!  Come to the Visioning Workshop on Wednesday
Program: Human Trafficking, a panel discussion from the RI Convention
Suzanne Barkley
Human Trafficking is becoming widely publicized in the media recently.  RI is considering an initiative to address the issue.
Human Trafficking: the group panel video report from the June Convention
Today we were received information about a scourge in our world, human trafficking.  Suzanne and Pat attended the Atlanta Rotary International Convention and brought news of the human trafficking panel discussion held by US Senator Bob Corker, Gary Haugen - IJM, Ashton Kutcher - Thorn, and Rebecca Bender - The Rebecca Bender Initiative.  The problem is massive, there are more human slaves in the world today than ever before.  Worldwide, 45 Million people are trapped victims of trafficking, a $150 Billion dollar “industry”.
This is modern day “slavery”; people being forced to do what their masters want by coercion and violence.  Most vulnerable are disadvantaged human beings and children.  It is in every country, including the United States.  ...and in our mountain community.
We quickly learned that the “face” of trafficking is not what we see in the movies, it is far more sinister.  People are being advertised for sex via the internet...over 120,000 ads a day have been identified by Thorn, Ashton Kutcher's foundation focused on stopping trafficking.  One of the speakers, Rebecca Bender spoke of how she was lured in by a man over a six month period who she thought loved her.  After escaping from six years of slavery she formed her own organization to help women recovering from slave trafficking so that they can reclaim their lives and find ways to live and make a living.  The recovery is what she found  to be the hardest part of the ordeal, after she was rescued.  In addition, her foundation has trained over 26,000 law enforcement officers in how to recognize and intercept victims.
What can we do?  talk to children, engage with local law enforcement, bring awareness to our communities and political leaders.  Educate ourselves and our community.  Serve the survivors!!!  Encourage local law enforcement, they need our support.
Learn more and can help fight this growing problem at:
Download or stream the Human Trafficking Panel Discussion video at:
  • Finn presented Rotary Peak pins to the Rotarians who hiked the peak in August.  Youth Exchange students climbed last Saturday.  Rotary trail stewards are now present each Saturday.
  • Please pay your dues as soon as possible.
  • Go to our website, to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey.  Click the Hurricane Harvey Donate button and your donation will be sent from our foundation account to Rotary recovery efforts in the stricken areas.  The fund-raising for Hurricane Harvey is being collected through Rotary International.
  • Recently there has been confusion regarding how we use our funds in the Club and Foundation accounts.  Finn sent an email with a explanation of the non-profit foundation vs. our Club funds and how they are distributed.  This is an important distinction that we as Rotarians need to understand.
  • Thank you to the Paytons for hosting another great Rotary Social last Thursday.
  • The Treasures Sale will be at St. Laurence Episcopal Church 9AM-3PM, Saturday September 23.  Donations will be collected from local Rotary Clubs Friday 5-8PM at the church.  Please make them “treasures” and not trash!  Volunteers please sign up to help via Sign-up Genius for Friday and Saturday, just click HERE.  Proceeds will go to the Foundation and some of the money raised will go to Hurricane relief.
  • Evergreen Rotary Re-cycle will be Saturday September 23.  For more information, download their information flyer HERE.
  • Suzanne reported on the Fitzsimons Middle school Interact meeting.  The staff at Platte Canyon High School is interested in forming an Interact Club, so Suzanne will talk with the Principal.
  • Foundation grant requests must be in by this Friday, September 8th!  Our Foundation members will meet September 19th after the Club meeting to evaluate the grant requests.
Our Visioning Workshop evening will be 5PM next Wednesday, September 13 at Our Lady of the Pines Catholic Church.  This is a critical exercise for our club and we need all club members there as we plan our club's future.  Take the online survey that Finn emailed out to prepare us for the event; this is VERY important!
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting September 5, 2017 Charlotte Wytias 2017-09-05 06:00:00Z 0

The Four-Way Test of the things we think, say, or do:

  1. Is it the truth?
  2. Is it fair to all concerned?
  3. Will it build good will and better friendships?
  4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

For many decades Rotary Clubs and Rotarians have used The 4-Way Test as an instrument to develop respect and understanding among peoples.

Rotarians around the world use the 4-Way Test in business, government and schools as an effective measuring stick for conduct, a guide to right thinking. If memorized and constantly applied to relations with others, it will contribute to more effective and friendlier relationships.

By getting into the habit of checking your thoughts, words and deeds against the 4-Way Test, experience shows that it will help you become happier and more successful.

The Rotary Four Way Test Lee Willis 2013-02-10 07:00:00Z 0
  • January:   Rotary Awareness Month
  • February:   World Understanding Month & R.I.'s Anniversary
  • March:   Literacy Month
  • April:   Magazine Month
  • May:   Rotary Education Month
  • June:   Rotary Fellowship Month & R. I. Convention
  • July:   Transition Month * New Rotary Year Begins
  • August:   Membership and Extension Month
  • September:   New Generations Month
  • October:   Vocational Service Month
  • November:   Rotary Foundation Month
  • December:   Rotary Family Month
Rotary Monthly Themes Lee Willis 0