About Rotary

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. Approximately 1.2 million Rotarians belong to more than 31,000 Rotary clubs located in 166 countries.  The Rotary Club of Lake Hickory is committed to the motto "Service Above Self" and strives to enrich our community by giving our time, talents and charitable gifts in the name of Rotary.


Club Meeting Program: December 3rd, 2012 - Dr. Anthony Zollo

Today's speaker was Dr. Anthony Zollo from Swisher Internal Medicine in Hickory.  He spoke to us about cholesterol levels and the good ( HDL) and the bad (LDL) levels.  He gave us ranges for both (HDL < 45) & (LDL < 100).  He spoke to us about how research has refined how these values have been changed through the years.

He spoke to us about risk factors such as genetics, diet , exercise, heart disease, diabetes, etc.  He briefly touched of the statins like Lipitor and how they work and the side effects of soreness and weakness, which are reversible when the medications are stopped.  He also talked about Wellchol that acts on the bile that helps lower cholesterol and passes in the stool.Both require monitoring with bloodwork every few months. Niacin also helps lower triglycerides, but should be prescribed by a doctor, since the dosage varies and can cause some liver issues if taken incorrectly.

The program was brought to us by Rotarians Betty Ikerd and Julie Packer.


Bill Loehr presented with Permanent Fund award

Rotary Club of Lake Hickory member Bill Loehr was presented with an award acknowledging his contribution to the Rotary Permanent Fund on November 13th, 2012.  We want to congratulate Bill for this award, and thank him for his continued support of Rotary!

Pictured: Bill Loehr (left) being presented his award for his support of the Rotary Permanent Fund by Club President Alan Jackson (right).


Club Meeting Program: November 6th, 2012 - Rotary Foundation

Our speaker today was Billi Black from Franklin Daybreak discussing the Foundation.

The Rotary Foundation is the #1 charity in the world.  It is a 4 star charity.  100% of the money that is donated goes to doing good work in the world, not to any salaries.  The Foundation mission is to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty.

We as Rotarians support our Foundation by becoming Paul Harris Fellows by donating $1000 or donating $1000 in the name of someone else.  This may be achieved all at once or over a cumulative timeframe.  If we pledge $1000 per year for our lives we become a Paul Harris Society member.  A Major Donor is one that gives $10,000 at once or over a 10 year period.  A Bequest member is one that leaves their estate to the Rotary Foundation, which goes into the Permanent Fund.

Our donations go to such programs as:

  • Ambassadorial scholars- each cost $26,000
  • Group Study Exchange ( Vocational training teams). Consist of 1 Rotarian and 4 non-          Rotarians that will travel for several weeks exchanging ideas and skills with other countries that they travel to. 
  • District Simplified Grants ( District Grants). These are small and used locally in our communities.
  • Matching Grants ( Global Grants) These are on a much larger scale and go internationally

These are several examples of what all our Foundation does along with the eradication. Of Polio.  There are many more things that are funded by our Foundation.

There are several Rotary Peace centers.  We have one locally that is shared by Duke and UNC.  This is a post graduate Peace scholarship that requires experience in peace conflict resolution.  There are other peace centers in Australia, France, Thailand and a few others.

The money that we give this year, 50% will return to our district in 3 years to be spent using District Designated Funds( DDF).  These funds will be used for District Simplified Grants, Group Study Exchange, Ambassadorial Scholars, and Matching Grants.  The other 50% will go into the World Fund which will match DDF's and 1/2 of what the local clubs donate to fund bigger international efforts.

This all sounds confusing, but is very well laid out in order to do good throughout the world.

Our District 7670 is #5 in wheelchair donations. Rotarians on the ground find the recipients to guarantee the chairs will be used and not sold.  The chairs are marked with the Rotary districts that supply them.

Our current DIstrict Governor, Frank Dean, would like to ask each Rotarian in our district this year to give $144.  This could be accomplished by $12 per month with direct giving.

The Foundation also has a Disaster Contingency Fund that is sent to the districts from the World fund.  Shelter Boxes are part of this also.  On a more personal note, District to District, DG Frank Dean has asked that each Rotarian in District 7670 give $25 to aid the Hurricane Sandy victims by sending checks to Rotary District 7260 Foundation, Inc. at P.O. Box 1552, Smithtown, NY, 11970. Or to DGN Calisto Bertin c/o Bertin Engineering,  66 Glen Avenue, Glen Rock, NJ 97452.   


Club Meeting Program: Sept. 18th, 2012

Chief Floyd Lucas brought Jim Fizzell, Postmaster of Hickory to speak to us about the current state of the postal service.  Chief Lucas pointed out that letter carriers not only deliver mail, but they save lives!  What he means is that the carriers notice people whose mail is not being picked up, strangers in the neighborhoods, and many other abnormalities on their routes.  Postmaster Fizzell stated that a life was saved the other day of someone who had fallen and could not get help.

Jim Fizzell is originally from California, then was in Wisconsin prior to arriving in Hickory in 2007.  He has had to oversee the "Network Optimization" in the last few years of our local post offices and mail going to Greensboro to be processed.

The concern of the postal service going broke and not paying bills, is a bit out of context.  In 2006 the government forced the postal service to pre-fund their retirement program.  They over payed between $50-70 million, due to the dwindling employee base and the fact that congress does not want to return the $ to the postal service. The government has such a deficit already they are not inclined to increase their deficit by refunding any money.  There are no tax subsidies to aid the P.O. Usually the rate increases would fund the 1st year- profit, 2nd year- break even, 3rd year - a loss., so the increase would normally repeat every three years, but someone decided this wasn't a good idea, so the P.O. income has dwindled.  In 2006 the P.O. had no debt, and by 2012 had over 13 million in debt due to the pre-funding of pensions.  The money reported that they did not pay was for a fund that was already over paid. 

Emails and online business created a decline in first class mail, but that trend has begun to slow.  The P.O. has partnered with FedEx and UPS to deliver mail.  The P.O. carries the packages the last mile.

The cut to 5 day mail delivery is still being debated.  This may not be a big thing to consumers, but makes a big difference to catalogs, carriers, bulk mail, etc.  A Bill has been put before the Congress to address this concern.

On 8/11/12 the main Processing in Hickory closed and the mail was shifted to Greensboro.  There were 180 employees in this processing area that have dropped to 22.  Many jobs shifted to other aspects of handling the mail. Jobs have been lost and post offices have closed or hours have changed, but these changes were needed to adapt to the changing markets.  There are no new p.o.'s being built, so they are relying on Contract Post Offices, like Lisa's Hallmark to have a retail presence.

The Postal Service is not going away, just adapting to the current economic challenges.


Club Meeting Program: August 28th, 2012


On September 28th, 2012, the Rotary Club of Lake Hickory was visited by Rotary District Governor Ronnie Thompson (pictured on the left) and had a program delivered by Ashley Moretz of the State Department (pictured on the right).


Club Meeting Program: August 7th, 2012

The Rotary Club of Lake Hickory welcomed fellow Rotarian Ed Mattson as he provided a program on how to effectively use marketing in today's economy.


Club Meeting Program: July 24th, 2012

The Lake Hickory Rotary Club's program on July 24th was given by Shawn Pennell and Jacob Reed from the Hickory Public Services Department as they discussed the new projects around the Hickory area.  Shawn has been with the Dept. for ~17 years and Jacob, an NCSU graduate, has been with the dept. for 3 years.

The Utilities dept. is a $23 million dollar enterprise.  They cover Catawba, Alexander, Burke, and Caldwell counties.  There are 499 miles of sewer pipe they handle, as well as, 920 miles of water distribution in our area.  The NE water treatment facility is a 32 million gallon/day facility.  They employee 107 people in which 71 are licensed operators.  Many of the operators hold a Grade A license, which is the highest in N.C.

Their goals for the Greater Hickory area is to create sustainable projects/facilities and reinvest in the existing system.  The N.E. facility is undergoing a major rehab. to handle waste water more efficiently and return cleaner water to Lake Hickory than is already in Lake Hickory.  They are currently evaluating the Cripple Creek basin for future use and current use.  They are slated to start replacing a water main in the Northern part of Hickory with a larger 20" ductile iron line to prevent a catastrophic failure of the original iron pipe.

They are also looking at an upgrade for the Hickory/Catawba WWT facility.  The department also contracts with Claremont and Hildebran to manage their waste water needs.

The department is constantly trying to be proactive to prevent water contamination incidences and water main breaks in order to provide the best service to the Greater Hickory area.  They were very informative and the club had many questions for them.


Young Motivational Speaker Addresses Club

In June, the Rotary Club of Lake Hickory had a special guest presentation.  Fourteen year-old Stephen Ludwig (Stevo as friends call him, and grandson of club member David Ludwig) reveals his amazing story about his life. Stevo has a condition called Olliers Disease, or a disease where the bones form differently than normal people thus making him stand out physically in the crowd. He also was diagnosed with Leukemia when he was six years old. Stephen and his family went through a very hard time as they all watched the normally active, fun, and energetic kid lay in bed, sick 24/7. He is an athletic kid who loves to be competitive about almost everything. He has also had a huge interest in sports like basketball, baseball, tennis, golf, swimming, and some other sports. He is very socially active and he lives a normal teenage life as he enters high school and hopefully makes the freshmen basketball team. Stevo also likes to help others so he has decided to become an inspirational speaker. This is his first of many inspirational speeches about how kids his age put themselves down because they aren't normal to others. Stephen hopes that he can make more speeches about his life and how he doesn't care about what other people think no matter how he looks. And how other kids should be themselves no matter what they look like or act like.


Rotary Donates Shade Structure to Hickory High School Pre-K

Officials from Hickory Public Schools and the Lake Hickory Rotary Club held a brief ceremony on April 5th to celebrate the completion of a shade structure at Hickory High School. The 15 ft. by 25 ft. structure, which is a donation to HHS by the Lake Hickory Rotary Club, was installed on the high school’s pre-school playground.

 “Our children love the shade structure,” said Karla Carpenter, HHS pre-school teacher. “The first day it was open, the children were so excited and spent lots of time just running and playing in the shade. Some went home and told their parents about it. On a practical level, the structure is important because it gives both children and staff shelter from the sun and its UV radiation,” added Carpenter.

The project grew out of a desire by the Lake Hickory Club’s leadership to do a project which would not only contribute something important to the community, but would also provide individual Rotarians a chance to work together. “Our club supports many wonderful causes, from providing college scholarships to helping countless local non-profit organizations through our contributing funds,” said Lysa Deaton-Smith, president of Lake Hickory Rotary. “We wanted this effort to give our members the opportunity to do something more physical.”

Led by General Contractor and Rotarian, Alex Rooker, with the help of local General Contractor, Stewart Robbins, the Rotarians surveyed the site, dug footers, poured concrete, installed the tubular superstructure, and lastly, added the bright blue shade cloth to the completed structure. Working on Saturdays, club members donated approximately 100 volunteer hours in completing the structure which cost the Lake Hickory Rotary Club $5,500.

“We had fun,” said Mark Sinclair, coordinator of the project and co-chair of the LH Rotary Club’s community service committee. “We’re proud of how everything turned out. I think that the staff and kids at HHS will get years of use from the shade structure.”

“We are very appreciative of this valued donation from Lake Hickory Rotary Club,” said Dr. Walter Hart, superintendent, Hickory Public Schools. “The quality of the shade structure is superior—and we are sincerely grateful for the volunteer hours put forth by the members of Lake Hickory Rotary Club. We are thrilled that our HHS pre-K students and staff now have an outdoor play area that offers an improved environment. This type of outreach from Lake Hickory Rotary clearly displays the strong foundation of community partnerships with Hickory Public Schools.”

Watch this short video about the building of the shelter!



Rotarian of the Year

The Rotary Club of Lake Hickory, a local club composed of men and women dedicated to serving our community and to meeting the goals set forth by Rotary International to better the world, would like to announce that Alan Jackson has been named the club’s “2011 Rotarian of the Year.”  The award and a plaque were bestowed and handed down by Don Fuller and Julie Packer, 2009 and 2010 Rotarian of the Year award recipients at the club’s annual dinner/dance held on Saturday, February 4, 2012.

Alan Jackson, President and CEO of the Jackson Group, a management consultant and survey service firm, as well as Jackson Group Interactive, a video and multimedia production company is also the Executive Producer of The Mesh, a new online media network in western North Carolina. His receipt of this award is well deserved. Working voluntarily for the Rotary Club of Lake Hickory since  2006,  Alan has exemplified the spirit of Rotary, known as “Service above Self,” by generously and readily sharing his skills to maintain and update the club’s website, serve as a club photographer and media contact, transfer data to a new master district and club database known as Dacdb, and as fundraising champion of the club’s annual Galaxy Shootout Soccer Tournament for several years consecutively. He currently serves on the club’s Board of Directors as President-Elect and will assume the role of Club President in July.