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Fellowship and Service the Bluffton Way

We meet Wednesdays at 7:30 AM
Rotary Community Center/Oscar Frazier Park
P.O. Box 142
Bluffton, SC  29910
United States
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August is Membership Month for Rotary.  We are starting the month off on a high note by inducting Allen Butts into membership on August 6th. Allen will be a great addition to our club and I look forward to him being a fellow Rotarian. Since membership is the focus for August, we should give some thought about who we know that would be a good Rotarian. Invite them to a meeting for a free breakfast and let them have an opportunity to find out what Bluffton Rotary is all about.
Saturday August 23 is The Third Annual Boiled Peanut Festival. This year we will be in charge of the beverage sales. Mike Tripka is chairing this event and will be asking for volunteers for the day of the event. The Board voted at our July meeting to use the net proceeds to help meet the Club’s Polio Eradication Goal of $2,125.
As most of you know, John Beiler and his family moved to Charlotte, NC which left us with a vacant Board position. I am pleased that Tony Falgiani agreed to take John’s place on the Board as Director of Youth Service.
The summer months are generally slow months for most Rotary clubs and our club is no different. July was a month that the new Board spent getting their feet wet learning more about their positions and responsibilities. As we move in to August we should see more activity from our various Committee’s.  Your Board members that head up these Committee’s need your help.  These areas of service are: Youth Services; Membership; Public Relations; Club Administration; Service Projects and Foundation. If you are interested in one or more of these areas please talk with the Board member who is responsible for that area or talk with me.    
In closing, I would like to thank everyone for making the transition to the new year smooth. I know that there well be bumps and hurdles through out the year but each and every member’s focus on the 4-Way Test and Service Above Self makes serving as your President much easier.

Our August 6th presentation was given by Amy Covington of the United Way of the Low Country.  Amy is a 19 year resident of the low country. This is her third week with United Way and her first speaking engagement for them. Amy explained how the United Way helps the people of the low country. They provide food, shelter, and pay bills and many other services to people in need. They do this through various programs - 44 programs in all. United Way received 135,000 calls last year through their helpline. Amy pointed out that United Way helps people across the entire socio-economic spectrum.

She went on to explain how United Way has partnered with the local school system to help lower the dropout rate. Many students who cannot read past a fourth grade level  drop out of school. United Way’s program has increased the math scores by 98%. United Way placed 200 tutors in the school system last year and 300 tutors this year. The goal is to increase the tutoring program to 600 volunteers.  United Way would like to see more involvement in their programs by Bluffton residents.

Besides tutoring they are asking residents to volunteer for the neighborhood ambassadors program and would like to see businesses get their employees to run United Way campaigns to raise money.  You may contact United Way By visiting or call 843.982.3040.


President Steve Miller inducts new Bluffton Rotary Club member Allen Butts. Mike Covert is Allen's sponsor. Welcome Allen!

Attorney, Ryan Mikkelson shared the efforts, successes and vision for Family Promise of Beaufort County.   The organization partners with local congregations, individuals, businesses, foundations, families and social services agencies to provide an extensive program for homeless families with a focus on children.  They provide temporary shelter, meals and comprehensive case management to help them find a job, gain permanent housing with the goal of keeping them out of a “homeless” category for 1 year.  This year, they project that the organization will assist 250-350 homeless children.
Ryan emphasized that families are homeless for many reasons beyond addiction issues.
Their day center is the hub of operations for developing budget and job skills and addressing social needs.  They are currently working towards a fundraising goal of one million dollars to expand facilities to assist and get more families “off the streets.”  Currently Family Promise leadership has raised $300,000 toward their goal. 
Ryan was well received by our club and we enjoyed seeing former Bluffton Rotarian, Family Physician Dr. Michael Mikkelson (Ryan’s father – “Mik” ) in attendance at our meeting.

President Steve Miller will be randomly asking members of our club to share a few interesting factoids about themselves this year at weekly meetings.

What a great way to emphasize this year’s Rotary International theme of “Light Up Rotary.”

Walt Dollman was the first Rotarian chosen for the spotlight. His sense of humor describing his life and career made it fun. He was well received!
Walt is at TD Bank in Financial Services at Okatie.  He is from Pittsburgh. Attended college at Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania. Received a B.A. degree in basically “nothing” he amusingly shared. He successfully managed a forklift company. Sales, business management and finance have been a major portion of his career. Married for 38 years.

Rodney Vaughn, beloved Rotarian in our club for many years shared his experience on a mission trip in June to the Dominican Republic.

Rodney went with 11 members from the All Saints Episcopal Church to provide a vacation bible school program in two different villages.

The church has gone for six years in a row.  Rodney wanted it to be both a Vacation Bible School and a Rotary connection to this country.  He proudly wore his Bluffton Rotary Club t-shirt throughout the trip.

The journey started with a two day tour of  the capital city, Santo Domingo.  After a day of skyscrapers, the real purpose began as they visited two poverty stricken areas to share the message of Christ.   Rodney and team worked closely with two churches serving a multitude of families over a 5 day period.   The team provided over 200 pairs of shoes to children. This gift was a huge hit with all that were able to receive a pair.   Rodney noted that there were Rotary welcome signs in many villages confirming that projects were under way or completed in the areas traveled. 

The Hilton Head-Bluffton Chamber Leadership Class of 2014 had a Ribbon Cutting for a new fitness trail in the Oscar Frasier Park in Bluffton, next to the Rotary Community Center. The Bluffton Rotary Club donated funds toward the new fitness stations, which will be enjoyed by many for years to come. Come on out and get fit!

Several members of the Bluffton Rotary Club received Paul Harris Fellow Awards in May: (from left to right) Steve Miller, PHF+1; Greg Johnson, Paul Harris Fellow; Tabor Vaux, PHF+1; Sidney Jones, PHF +1, Deborah Burt, PHF+2 and Brad Talbert, PHF+2. Congratulations to all for your achievement and contributions to Rotary International!

The month of May and all it represents - spring, end of school, graduation, Mother’s Day and, for the Bluffton Rotary Club, the Bluffton Village Festival - is upon us. In our 6th year after taking over from Babbie Guscio, as Julie Taylor, Event Manager for the Town of Bluffton said we “continue to get better year after year!” This was another great festival year, thanks to all of you…each club member who volunteered this weekend or who served on the committee working for the last several months and for the many volunteers and sponsors outside Rotary…we could not do it without all of you! So many, many thanks for your help, commitment, hard work and time. This is our biggest fund-raiser of the year and all proceeds go to our contributions account, to do good in the community and with Rotary International. However, this event is not just about raising money, it is giving a gift to Bluffton, to our community and guests and to all the area craftsmen and artists who love our event and the chance to show off their wares.
Special thanks goes to Mike Covert, who chaired the committee this year, Lisa Carroll and her team for great publicity and advertising, John Kirkland who once again stepped up to the not so glamorous but oh so necessary job of transportation, trash and sanitation, Sandy Graves for merchandising, Chris Epps for organizing volunteers, Deb Boshaw for handling our wine and beer licenses, Jim Hudson for handling our insurance needs, Bob Prust and Mike Tripka for beverage sales, Steve Miller for the finances and Cindy Owens for entertainment.
And in other club news, we are pleased to announce David Hussey has been approved for membership. Per our club rules, David will be proposed for membership for one week and then, if no objections are brought forward, he will be inducted into membership this month.
We are also so very pleased to welcome Jay Parks back, after an illness and treatment in Atlanta! Jay just got back and was working the beer tent on Saturday! Go Jay!
And more good news: we are greatly relieved to welcome Michael Hahn back home to Bluffton, after a scary few weeks at MUSC in Charleston. We are thankful for having such great medical care so close by and happy to have Michael back in our midst.
We are also happy to welcome our newly chartered and installed Rotaract Club of USCB. The new club was installed on April 28 and new officers inducted. Thanks again to fellow member Paige Castle for helping us move forward with organizing this new Rotaract Club and to Tom Faber for getting the paperwork together to make it happen. We will expect good things from this new club…and we were happy to see many members out helping with the Bluffton Village festival this weekend!
Thanks for your continued support of our Rotary Club, living up to our motto of “Service Above Self” and for supporting me as your “recycled” president!
Yours in Rotary,
Dot Jeger

New University of South Carolina at Beaufort Rotaract Club was Chartered and new officers installed on the steps of the USCB building in Bluffton on Monday, April 28. Assistant Governor David Tirard assisted in the Induction of officers and presented the charter for the new club. Samantha Smith was inducted as President, following Nathan Cooper who just completed his term as President and will now enjoy the much coveted role of Past President! The USCB Rotaract Club is jointly sponsored by the Rotary Club of Bluffton and the Hilton Head Island Rotary Club.



Sep 17, 2014
Shari Drawdy
Hospice Care
Sep 24, 2014
Oct 01, 2014
Dr. John Edman
Oct 08, 2014
Pam Toney
Oct 15, 2014
Elizabeth Bergman
Local Economy
Oct 22, 2014
Nov 05, 2014
Rotary Foundation/Stephanie Jameson
Foundation/Behavioral Hurdles
Nov 12, 2014
Rotary Foundation
Rotary Foundation
Nov 26, 2014
Dec 17, 2014
Singing Eagles
MC Rielly Chorus
Dec 24, 2014
Dec 31, 2014
Feb 04, 2015
Mike Davis
First Tee of the Low Country

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