Category: Members (Page 1 of 7)

Lawrence Central Rotary Inducts New Members

New members (from left) Karena Schmitendorf, Gena Dellett, Julia Gaughan, Janis Bunker, Lee Ann Thompson, and Margaret Brumberg.

Lawrence Central Rotary celebrated the club’s new members on September 5. The following new members were inducted:  Karena Schmitendorf, Gena Dellett, Julia Gaughan, Janis Bunker, Lee Ann Thompson, and Margaret Brumberg.

L-R: Julia Gaughan, Margaret Brumberg, and Karena Schmitendorf

The three newest members, Julia Gaughan, Karena Schmitendorf, and Margaret Brumberg shared more about their background and interests during the now traditional new member panel.

Julia Gaughan studied law and works at Bert Nash. Her most recent read was There There by Tommy Orange. Audrey Coleman invited Julia to Rotary. The two have been friends since college. Volunteering has always been important to Julia. She shared that she’s excited to be around people who find service important. For fun, Julia reads, writes, is involved in several book clubs, and attends a lot of soccer games, cheering on her 10 year old son.

Margaret Brumberg studied law and administers federal grants at KU. Her most recent read was Amateur by Thomas Page McBee. Kate Campbell invited Margaret to Rotary. She was immediately inspired by the service mission. For fun Margaret enjoys being outside, taking walks, and drinking wine.

Karena Schmitendorf is a retired art instructor and now works combining three of her passions: art, elderly care, and transitional housing. She has recently been reading books on death and dying, integrating her learning into her daily work. While living in California, Karena regularly presented to Rotary clubs about her work with a homeless and housing group. She is especially drawn to Rotary’s international focus. For fun Karena enjoys gardening, cooking, and her work renovating a house. She also is enjoying the many art galleries and events in Lawrence.

Lawrence Kids Calendar Sees Improvements

Jay Holley shares an update about Lawrence Kids Calendar.

Jay Holley shares an update about Lawrence Kids Calendar.

Lawrence Central Rotary knew taking on the Lawrence Kids Calendar was going to pay off, even if it meant more volunteers were needed. With an active membership, volunteers keep stepping up. As president-elect Audrey Coleman said during the July 27th meeting, “the field of nonprofit fundraising is crowded. With the Kids Calendar, we offer businesses a service they really need.”

Fortunately, that service is getting better all the time. Jay Holley shared a variety of updates with the club that the team of volunteers is focused on to improve the Lawrence Kids Calendar.

One recent change Holley is excited about is setting up a staging environment for the website. Among other things, this will give the administrative team the ability to test out and implement changes without potentially breaking or modifying the website’s existing functionality. Holley summarized, “we want to improve things without breaking things.”

The team is also looking at ways to increase site speed and performance, better manage and update all plugins that add functionality to the site, improve tracking options, and simplify the management interface.

Coleman elaborated on the initiative to generate a “Back to School Monthly Preview Guide” and ways Rotary members can get involved in promoting the Kids Calendar and selling listing promotions. As the Kids Calendar grows, so will the Lawrence Rotary Club’s ability to support and enrich daily living and opportunities in Douglas County.


Open House with Brenners

George Brenner, a longtime member of Lawrence Central Rotary, retains his membership in the club even though he and his wife Mary Ann now live in Richmond, VA.  When the Brenners visited Lawrence recently, club members met for a potluck meal to reconnect.

New Talent and Energy Joins Lawrence Central

Three of the newest members of Lawrence Central Rotary shared the spotlight in a recent panel interview. All are excited about how Rotary can expand their networks of friendship and opportunity for community service in Lawrence.

Lee Anne Thompson (left) is AVP and Employee Benefit Officer at The Trust Company of Kansas (TCK). Lee Anne grew up in Hayes. After earning a degree in finance at Kansas State, she moved to Wichita to work for TCK for a number of years. She spend eight years as IT manager at another Wichita business before returning to TCK in 2012 at the Lawrence office. Lee Anne serves on the board of the Lawrence Community Orchestra and has been active in the music ministry at her church. She has been a foster parent and has a passion for serving neighbors, clients, friends and others that may be in need. To see her smile, ask her about her dogs. Lee Anne relished the childhood freedom to ride her bike or her horse all over small-town Hayes. A favorite memory is the laughter when her family played card games together.

Gena Dellett (center) grew up in Concordia, KS. Although her father was a dairy farmer, she considered herself more of a town girl. She was active in Rotary programs even during high school and helped to start a Rotoract Club while attending University of Rochester, NY. She was living in Alamosa, CO, when she joined a Rotary club in 2014. Gena moved to Lawrence in recent months with her husband and two young children. Professionally, she specializes in communications and in relationships, working remotely as an account manager for Wanna Pixel, a technology company. Gena tried hot air ballooning while living in Colorado and loves it. She believes that purpose is key to leading a successful life; she values family over career and believes that earning money is a means, not an end.

Leticia Cole (right) has worked with Paul Werner Architects for the past 11 years. Although she lived in Lawrence in grade school, she graduated from high school in Topeka. After earning a degree in Architecture at KU, she spent professional time in Phoenix and in St. Louis before returning to Lawrence. Leticia is a graduate of Leadership Lawrence and serves on the board of Catch-A-Break. She thinks our Club will be a good fit for her as she enjoys doing anything outdoors—biking, yard work, camping. A favorite adventure was a raft trip through the Grand Canyon with her husband.

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