Rotary Awards $78,000 in Scholarships

The Vancouver Rotary Foundation awarded $78,000 in college scholarships to 23 Southwest Washington high school and college students at the Club’s annual scholarship luncheon at the Red Lion Hotel at the Quay on Wednesday, May 8. In 40 years, the Foundation has awarded more than $1 million in scholarships to local students.

The scholarships are granted by the Vancouver Rotary Foundation, which is the charitable arm of the Rotary Club of Vancouver. Many of the scholarships are made possible through endowments established by individuals. Additionally, the Vancouver Rotary Foundation’s Festival of Trees provides funds.

Scholarship winners were Melis Gurocak, Miranda Miller, Danielle Stinson, Justine Hanrahan, Diana Betancourt, Brogan Breitag, Melanie Herb, Victoria Costa, Brittany Haines, Brittan Mathes, Christina Chen, Courtney Seto, Marissa Gelms, Morgan Parker, Brian Wong, Alexis Scott, Kyra Smith, Peter Miller, Maria Santos Pinacho, Brett Ellibee, Nathan Murphy, Nichole Shields and Thomas Wilson.

Rotarians Cycle for Scholars on May 4!

Our club members will be raising scholarship funds at the 30th Annual Ride Around Clark County on Saturday, May 4. You’re invited to participate by riding (18, 34, 65 or 100 mile loops) or pledging. ALL riders and pledgers will be invited to a free Pasta Party on Friday night, May 3! (And you may bring a guest for $10.)

You can pledge for individual riders or make a contribution to our Cycling for Scholars fund which will go directly for our scholarship program. If you are interested, sign up at a regular Rotary meeting or contact Greg Jellison at, Dean Sutherland at or Katlin Smith at

Restaurant Owners Chuck and Sandy Chronis Receive 2012 Vocational Service Award from Rotary Club of Vancouver

Lisa Gibert of the Rotary Club of Vancouver (left), Bill Marshall representing the nominating organization “The Liars’ Club,” and Sandy Chronis, winner of the Vocational Service Award. Not pictured: Chuck Chronis, who was unable to attend.

Restaurant owners and community supporters Chuck and Sandy Chronis received the Vocational Service Award of the Rotary Club of Vancouver today at a noon luncheon at the Red Lion Hotel at the Quay. The Vocational Service Award recognizes an individual in our community who exemplifies outstanding commitment to their business or profession, over a significant number of years, leaving a lasting positive influence on their vocational area and the community in general, and who reflects the values of Rotary.

Chuck and Sandy Chronis have owned Chronis’ Restaurant and Lounge in downtown Vancouver for decades.  For the past 28 years, they have generously opened their restaurant on Thanksgiving for anyone needing a meal.  About 11 years ago, they extended the tradition to Christmas when they recognized it is harder for people to get a good meal on that day.  These events draw hundreds of attendees and dedicated volunteers.

For Thanksgiving, pictures are taken and attendees leave with a photo in hand and extra food for those at home unable to join them.  At Christmas, each child leaves with a gift, and others are offered a warm scarf, hat and gloves.

“Everyone is welcome here.  This event is important to us; we hear so many stories about how people have been touched by this.  That’s what makes it worth it!” stated Chuck, who was unable to attend the luncheon. Bill Marshall, past award winner and representative of the nominating group, the Liars’ Club, spoke about Chuck and Sandy at the luncheon.

Golfers Raise More than $9,000 for Children’s Home Society at the Rotarians Fore a Cause Tournament

Russ Dyer, Bob Vukanovich, Rick Green and Kelly McDonald at the Rotarians Fore a Cause Golf Tournament in September.

The Rotary Clubs of Clark County of Clark County presented proceeds from the annual Rotarians Fore A Cause golf tournament, which was held at Orchards Hills Country Club, to the Children’s Home Society of Washington on October 10. A $9,038 check was presented to staff member Bridget McLeman at a regular meeting of the Rotary Club of Vancouver. Funds will go to the Society’s Washougal-based East Family County Resource Center, which provides early learning, child and family counseling, and family support services. Wonderful work, golfers!

Vancouver Rotary Foundation Awards $52,651 in Community Grants

Recipients of Vancouver Rotary Foundation Community Grants

The Vancouver Rotary Foundation awarded $52,651 in community grants at a Club’s luncheon on September 19 at the Red Lion Hotel at the Quay. The Vancouver Rotary Foundation, which has given more than $3 million in scholarships to local students and grants to community organizations since its creation in 1972, is the charitable arm of the Rotary Club of Vancouver.

Community Programs Fund grants were awarded to 16 community organizations:

AWARE ($2750)
Boys and Girls Club ($5000)
Bridge the Gap ($5000)
CDM Services ($1200)
Celebrate Life ($3485)
Children’s Justice Center ($3635)
Clark County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue Team ($3119)
Community Resource Center Washington Elementary School ($6000)
Council for the Homeless WHO Shelter ($2000)
GEAR UP ($2500)
The Giving Closet ($4750)
Innovative Services NW ($4227)
Junior Achievement ($1395)
NAMI ($590)
NW Association for Blind Athletes ($4500)
Partners in Careers YouthFirst Program ($2500)

About Vancouver Rotary Foundation
The Vancouver Rotary Foundation exists to foster, develop, promote, and encourage the health, education and general welfare of the residents of Vancouver and Clark County. The Vancouver Rotary Foundation is funded by contributions and proceeds from the annual Rotary Festival of Trees.

Rotary Club of Vancouver is Seeking Nominations for 2012 Vocational Service Award

The Rotary Club of Vancouver is seeking nominations for the 2012 Vocational Service Award.  The purpose of the annual Vocational Service Award of the Rotary Club of Vancouver is to recognize an individual in our community who exemplifies outstanding commitment to their business or profession, over a significant number of years, leaving a lasting positive influence on their vocational area and the community in general, and who reflects the values of Rotary.  Last year’s recipient was Katlin Smith, of UrbanWords Group. Previous winners have included Mark Matthias, Ed Lynch, Tom Mears, Jan Oliva, George Propstra, Paul Christensen and many others.

Nominations are open to Rotarians and non-Rotarians. The nomination deadline is September 26.  To receive a nomination form, please contact Lisa Gibert at or (360) 992-2677 or click here.

This year’s award will be presented at noon on Wednesday, October 31 at the Red Lion Hotel at the Quay.

Clark County Rotary Clubs Join “Panhandling for Polio,” Take to the Streets on Saturday, Sept. 8

Members of the seven Clark County Rotary Clubs, the Rotaract Club and their helpers will take to the streets on Saturday, September 8 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. to raise funds that will help eradicate polio. All proceeds from “Panhandling for Polio” will be donated to Rotary International’s global polio eradication effort.

Launched by the Washington County, OR Rotaract Club (young professional’s Rotary) in 2009, the project has gained support from the international Rotary community.

Since 1985, Rotary International has led the global crusade to eliminate polio. The result is a world nearly free of this crippling disease. Only a few provinces in four countries remain. In response, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, one of the major partners in this effort, has provided $355 million dollars and challenged Rotary to raise $200 million in matching funds.  The resulting $555 million will directly support immunization campaigns in developing countries, where polio continues to infect and paralyze children.

As the polio eradication effort closes in on the disease, the work becomes more difficult.  Polio’s strongholds remain in the world’s poorest countries, many of which require greater levels of support to reach the goal. Without eradication efforts like the Rotary Polio Plus program, this killing, crippling disease could quickly return worldwide.  As long as polio threatens even one child anywhere in the world, all children – wherever they live – remain at risk.

For more information or to donate, visit:

Rotary Club of Vancouver and Foundation Officers and Boards Installed for 2012-13

2012-13 President Eric Olmsted

Eric Olmsted, President of On Line Support, was installed as the 2012-2013 President of the Rotary Club of Vancouver at the club’s 91th annual banquet on June 27 at the Red Lion at the Quay. Other officers are Susanne Cox, President-Elect; Elson Strahan, President Nominee; Victor DeAntonis, Secretary; Gordon Rodewald, Treasurer; Gary Bock, Sergeant-at-Arms and Timothy Buckley, Immediate Past President. Club Directors are Katie Foehl, Lisa Schmidt, Dan Sockle, Dean Sutherland and Susan Tissot.


Greg Jellison, 2012-13 President, Vancouver Rotary Foundation

Greg Jellison, Principal at HDJ Design Group will continue as the President of the Vancouver Rotary Foundation. Other Foundation Board officers are Katlin Smith, President-Elect; Patsy Eby, Treasurer and Board members Kate Benson, Hans Boehm, Susanne Cox, Timothy Buckley, Jeff Hamm, Jennifer Larson-Cody, Henri Moreau, Eric Olmsted, Jean Rahn, Dean Sutherland, Joe Vance and Steve Webb.