For the last month, Kristi Weikel has been trying to get used to her new role as the Ramsey Rotary Club president.
The presidency passed to Weikel June 27.
She is not used to running meetings or the other responsibilities of president, Weikel said.
“But I am really excited to be leading our group at this juncture,” said the Ramsey business attorney.
Ramsey Rotary is nearing the ground breaking of the Two Rivers Reflections project, expected sometime late in the fall.
This monument is a way for the Rotary to give something back to the community, Weikel said.
Although the project has taken a lot of the group’s focus for the last couple of years, Weikel’s goal is redirect the Ramsey Rotary’s focus back to its other long standing projects.
“(Two Rivers) is not our only project. We want to continue serving with our other projects,” Weikel said.
The Ramsey Rotary has given financial support and volunteers to Achieve Services, Youth First and Anoka County Brotherhood Council (ACBC) Food shelf as well as partnered with the Anoka Rotary Club to hand out dictionaries at local elementary schools.
To continue supporting these project, the club has to have the people and raise money, Weikel said.
All Rotary clubs have a mission is to improve lives locally and globally through service and to do that, it takes members, money and the right mind-set, she said.
For the next year, “we want to make sure we are growing our club, raising funds to give away and being mindful of what Rotary is and does,” Weikel said.
While Rotary International has maintained its membership numbers, the Ramsey Rotary and other clubs in the district have seen their members drop.
At one time, Ramsey Rotary had 35 members, Weikel said.
Over the last two years, the club has lost members because of corporate cutbacks, members moving out of the community and people becoming overwhelmed by the club’s numerous activities.
Weikel wants to grow the 22-member club by at least 10 members during her presidency.
“We can do more with a higher membership,” she said.
Weikel said she also wants to make sure the club has the right structure in place to retain and attract new members and to continue funding Rotary activities.
The club gives to local groups as well as global Rotary projects, including efforts to eradicate polio, she said.
To be able to give, Ramsey Rotary needs to raise money, said Weikel, the lead partner in Weikel & Boyd Law Firm, LLC.
Over the next 30 days, the club will be working on strategic planning for fund-raising events.
Among the ideas Weikel would like to see the group consider are family events, speakers of national, inspirational and business appeal and a 5K Fun Run.
Fund-raising is always a challenge, even without the economic challenges, Weikel said.
“But it is about how can we, not why they can’t raise money,” she said.
Tammy Sakry is at firstname.lastname@example.org