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October 23, 2008 - Make Dreams Real - Governor's State of the State Luncheon

What: Colorado Rotary's Annual State of the State Address by Governor Bill Ritter

Where: Plaza at the Inn at the Mart

When: Thursday, October 23, 2008

Time: 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Ticket Prices: $35.00

Beneficiary: Rotary International

Host(s): Rotary District of Denver, Southeast - Number 5450

Master of Ceremonies: Steve Cantrell, Rotary District 5450 District Governor (2008, 2009)

Honoree(s): Colorado Governor Bill Ritter

Founders: Club Chartered 1985

Committee Members: PR Committee: Sheri Beattie, Lori McGhee, Stephanie Ursini; Host Committee: Ray Anderson, PDG David Beall, PDG Frank Sargent, Sheri Beattie, DGN Karen Sekick, AG Kim Castellano, PDG Norris Hermsmeyer, Mike and Anne Moore, DGE Mike Oldham, Eden Recor, Bob Short, Sharon Svendsen, Doyle Tinkey

President(s): President: Mike Klingbiel

Sponsors: Brown-Tedstrom, Rotary Club of Denver Southeast, Soko Photo, Counterpoint Design Grapics, Options Multimedia, Denver Merchandise Mart, Blacktie-Colorado, District 5459 Staff and Volunteers, Rotary Club of Denver Staff, Rotary Club of Denver Southeast Volunteers

Menu: Chicken Caesar salad, coffee, iced tea, carrot cake

Attendance: 750

Attire: Business

Board of Directors: District Governor: Steve Cantrell (Smoky Hill); District Governor-Elect: Mike Oldham (Parker); District Governor-Nominee: Karen Sekich (Longmont Twin Peaks); Treasurer: Dick Castleman (Englewood); District Secretary: Liz Anderson (non-voting); PDG: Dave Beall (Littleton)

Steering Committee: District Governor Steve Cantrell, Mary Cantrell, Mike Klingbeil, Sue Fox, Suzanne Hammer, Gail Lehrmann, Steve Werner, Grant Wilkins

Blacktie Photos by: Howie Grapek

 Sammy, a guest Rotarian from South Africa, with Governor Ritter.
Sammy, a guest Rotarian from South Africa, with Governor Ritter.

By Howie Grapek

The 3rd Annual State of the State Rotary Luncheon featuring Colorado Governor Bill Ritter as the keynote speaker was held on Thursday, October 23, 2008 at the Denver Merchandise Mart. The first two luncheons were successful and the attendance has grown significantly each year.

This year, Gov. Ritter, an honorary Rotarian, announced major bi-partisan plans to revitalize Colorado's education systems, strengthen businesses and the economy and address health-care cost, quality and access issues. He also talked passionately about how Colorado now hosts the largest renewable energy companies in the country. He touched on education reform, economic development, health care reform, public safety, new energy economy, government efficiency, voting and elections and natural resources.

The guests of the luncheon had the opportunity to jot down questions during their meal. After Gov. Ritter delivered his State of the State address, he answered six randomly selected questions.

In addition to hearing The State of the State by Gov. Bill Ritter, Steve Cantrell, Rotary District 5450 Governor, provided an update on the Polio Eradication Campaign and honored the polio survivors in Rotary District 5450. He also recognized the leaders that have tirelessly worked on the PolioPlus campaign.

Rotary is a worldwide organization of business and professional leaders that provides humanitarian service, encourages high ethical standards in all vocations, and helps build goodwill and peace in the world. Rotary club membership represents a cross-section of the community's business and professional men and women. The main objective of Rotary is service — in the community, in the workplace and throughout the world. Rotarians develop community service projects that address many of today's most critical issues.

The Rotary Club of Denver Southeast unites more than 120 service-minded business and professional leaders in a broad range of service projects and club programs. Since 1985, club members have distinguished themselves by receiving prestigious international grants, hosted international guest speakers and contributed to Denver, the nation and the world. Locally, they have contributed to the I Have A Dream Foundation and Habitat for Humanity while implementing their own programs including the Read To Me literacy program, Veteran’s Appreciation Breakfast, holiday baskets and home fix ups for the needy, Young Achievers, RYLA, and the Hurricane Katrina rebuilding effort. Internationally, they have contributed service and funds to various countries in need. Currently, they are working with Sonrise Orphanage in Rwanda and spearheading an innovative water project in the slums of Nairobi that will provide clean drinking water to many of the 800,000 residents.

Proceeds from this event will be used toward the Rotary's district-wide effort in reaching the Polio Plus goal: to raise funds for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation's $100 million challenge grant.

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