Posted on Oct 23, 2017
President Julie Wearn, AG Lynne Megan, DG Kyle Haugen, Carrie Haugen
Lynne Megan introduced today’s speaker, District Governor Kyle Haugen who spoke about Rotary's future, here in Minnesota and worldwide.
Kyle began by underscoring the overall 2017-18 presidential theme, Rotary: Making a difference. He challenged us to really think about why we make a difference as club members and individuals and how we can do more.
Key Rotary strategic priorities where we can have significant impact include environmental degradation and global climate change, which are serious threats to everyone. These threats have a disproportionate impact on those who are most vulnerable, the people to whom Rotary has the greatest responsibility. Kyle relayed the challenge to plant a tree for each Rotary member. Globally that would mean 1.2 million trees to fight greenhouse gasses and slow global warming.
Kyle also talked about Rotary’s need to reflect the world we live in by improving gender balance in our membership. Globally only 22 percent of members are women. Our goal is to strive for 50 percent. In addition, Rotary must make a push to recruit new members under the age of 40. Today only 5 percent of members are under 40. Looking forward, the need to address membership is critical. We need to both recruit and retain members through engagement and by offering outstanding personal experience for all members. 
There are many ways we can continue to make an impact both locally and globally.  We can tell people about Rotary and how we make our communities better. We also know that we can do more together than we can do alone. It is one of our fundamental Rotary principles to join with others to identify need, raise money and solve problems. Finally, we can make a real difference in our local and global communities by making the Rotary Foundation one of our individual charities of choice.