As the Rotary year draws to a close, it brings an opportunity to look back at club accomplishments and to thank those that have made this a very successful year for our club.  This success can be attributed to one thing:  all of our members.  So first, a sincere thank you to all for rising to the occasion through volunteering time, talents or treasure and being a member of The Rotary Club of Ames.  Without our members we would not have been able to get the volunteers, do the local and international projects, raise funds to support service projects and programs, and ultimately, to be the best service club within Ames.
When the Rotary year started, my primary goal was for The Rotary Club of Ames to be the premier service club within Ames and within Rotary District 6000.  While measuring this goal against other service clubs is difficult at best, I can say that we definitely rose to the top.  Our club has given back to this community over $21,000 in local grants from our major grant of $7,500 to The Story County Primary Health Clinic to many smaller grants ranging from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand.  Additionally, we have many members that have donated their time and money directly to organizations as a result of being a Rotarian.  The Youth and Shelter Services annual holiday gift and food basket drive is one of the major recipients of Rotarians individual efforts.  Thank you to Ron Smith and John Shierholz for spearheading this yearly drive.  But also, thank you to all our members that have given to local organizations individually.
While money is important, so is hands-on volunteering.  Two of our big events were the Iowa Games and Special Olympics.  Additionally members have volunteered for Raising Readers, Youth and Shelter Services, Heartland Senior Services and many other Ames organizations.  Thank you to Roger Maharry, Marge Oldehoeft, Randi Peters, Jean Kresse and many others for getting volunteers for these events and others.
Three new member groups completed local projects that have had a direct impact on the quality of life for our community:  Youth and Shelter Services 7-12 house, Good Neighbor Emergency Assistance, and Raising Readers.  All three of these projects have been funded with club money, and more importantly time and talents of club members doing work directly for these organizations.  Thank you to all the new members who participated in these groups and special thanks to both Don Borcherding and Jim Mason for their mentorship.
A second goal that I had set out to accomplish is securing Rotary district grants for local projects.  Due to the grant application process within Rotary, this year we did not receive a district grant; however, we did change the process which will allow us to compete for district grants and bring Rotary money back to our community in the coming year.
On the district level, our success was rewarded with the club achieving the Presidential Citation with Distinction, one of only a few clubs within the district to do so.  To receive this award, our club had to rise to the top in regards to membership, local projects, international projects, and fellowship opportunities to highlight some of the main areas.  We met and exceeded each of these goals.  Our club has also been a leader within district and nationally due to our World Service Committee and their efforts working with clubs from five different districts around the world.  Gerald Klonglan, Dave Fox, Steve Jones, Donna Newbrough, Randi Peters, Glen Rippke, Mary Wells and Mark Westgate all deserve recognition for their efforts on this committee.
Fellowship opportunities bring up my final goal to discuss: which was to increase fellowship opportunities within the club.  Frank Feilmeyer again did a great job organizing the offsite fellowship opportunities allowing club member the opportunity to highlight their businesses.  Linda Glantz Ward brought to the clubs attention fellowship opportunities within Rotary International.   This led to the formation of the Cyclone chapter of the Rotary Wine Appreciation Fellowship, which includes Rotarians from five central Iowa clubs.
Special thanks to our board of directors in guidance and approving our projects.  Special recognition to Lisa Eslinger and Scott Blum whose terms as board of directors expire.  Their service to the club has been greatly appreciated by myself and past presidents as well. 
Committee heads and all committee members of the music committee, local projects committee, new membership and new membership orientation committee, have done exceptional work this year which has contributed to our success. 
Both Tanya Anderson and Jeff Iles are deserving of recognition for their efforts:  Tanya on leading the membership drive and Jeff for lining up another year of excellent programs for the club.
Last, but no way least important, has been the efforts of our “Chief Operations Officer”, or more officially, our Executive Secretary.  Karin Sevde has worked tirelessly to ensure each meeting is set up and runs smooth, newsletters are published on time, bills paid and countless other jobs that entail making this Club work.  Her efforts are greatly appreciated not only by myself, but by all of our club members.
I have enjoyed this year as President, but it couldn’t have been done without everyone’s help.  I thank all of you for the opportunity to have served as President.
Dan Divine