Rotary Bulletin for July 9, 2013



Last Week’s Program:  The program was provided by John Bachman, recently retired news anchor from WHO television.  John spoke to us about the Iowa Healthiest State Initiative. 


The Iowa Healthiest State Initiative is derived from the Blue Zones project by Healthways.  The Blue Zones are areas which have been identified around the world where people reach age 100 at an astonishing rate.  Places like Sardinia, Italy, Okinawa, Japan and Loma Linda, California have maintained healthy lifestyles for generations. 


The Blue Zones Project aims to adopt the lifestyle principles of these areas to transform cities and towns into Blue Zones Communities where people can live “longer, better” lives. Iowa is attempting to become the healthiest state in the U.S. Achieving that goal requires various sectors to pledge to act on specific responsibilities. 


To draw attention to this issue, John pointed out the incredible health care expense due to chronic illnesses.  Treatment costs for chronic illnesses can be reduced by proactive steps including more physical activity, better nutrition, adopting a healthy mental outlook toward our lives and activities, and being involved socially.  It has been suggested that if we reduce the obesity rate in Iowa from its current level to the level in 1985, the state would save over $1 billion dollars in health care expenses.  In addition to this huge savings, our citizens would be healthier and more productive.


To learn more about opportunities to pledge personally or to pledge on behalf of your company, please visit the Blue Zone website at


Thank you to John for an interesting and stimulating program.

(Editors Note:  What if West Des Moines Rotary became a “Blue Zones” service club?)


Adam Nelson recently completed a 200 mile bike ride to raise funds for victims of human trafficking.  Hats off to Adam for his involvement in such a worthwhile project and for being able to pedal those miles in a single day. 

President Chris Nelson announced that past district governor and former president of our club Bill Reese is undergoing back surgery.  Bill would appreciate certainly any well wishes you might send his way.

The Bunny Harper golf tournament will be held on July 15th at the Legacy Golf Course in Norwalk. If you are interested you can still sign up. Please contact Greg Kenyon and let him know. 

Host Families:

Part One: Exchange Student

Our club is scheduled to host an exchange student from Mexico and we are still in need of host families. 

Part Two:  RAGRAI

Speaking of host families, our president was contacted by the Ames Rotary Club as some members of the Ames club are seeking overnight lodging during RAGBRAI week.  If you are interested in hosting in your home (or camping in your backyard) please let Chris know. 

Fourth of July:

Harold Hulleman announced that several people from our club will be participating in the annual West Des Moines parade as a means to promote and bring awareness about our club including but not limited to the bicycle project.  Harold Hulleman plans to participate as do Chris Nelson, Adam Nelson and Allison Carlson and her family. 

Three Minute Speaker and Sergeant at Arms:

Club member Russ Hamilton shared snippets of his life and work.  Russ has been a member of our club for approximately one year but been a member of other Rotary clubs for approximately 28 years.  Russ is currently the vice president and general manager of WOI T.V.  Over his career he has worked in many markets in radio and T.V. stations including Bakersfield, California, Rochester, Minnesota, Syracuse, New York, various locations in Pennsylvania, and several cities in the state of Iowa.  Russ has been married for 47 years and has two adult children.