Bill Rose, the Arts News was presented by Laura Latiolais. President Steve thanked Ed Sackley (our technology guru) for the new graphics on the big screen over the head table. Visiting Rotarians included Meghan Decker from Portage, Kathy Coats from



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Rotary Club of Kalamazoo News – January 28, 2012 – Submitted by Judy Moore
After we opened the meeting with the Star Spangled Banner, and an invocation by Bill Rose, the Arts News was presented by Laura Latiolais. President Steve thanked Ed Sackley (our technology guru) for the new graphics on the big screen over the head table.
Visiting Rotarians included Meghan Decker from Portage, Kathy Coats from Portage, and Dr. Neal Davidson from the Crystal City Pentagon Club.
Guests introduced by Rotarians: Scott Gould, by President Steve, Lisa Garcia by Rob Peterson, Amy Bliesener by her Mom, PE Sandy Bliesener, Rich Voorman by Linden Griffin, Christopher Markin by Nan Thompson.

Songs: Tim Kilmartin led us in a verse of He’s Got The Whole World in His Hands (a tribute to our smart phones!), after showing us a list of songs we wouldn’t be singing—relative to today’s program on technology firms.
Special Presentation President Steve presented Paul Harris Fellow awards to Rotarians Peter Tanz and Tony Vizzini. Congratulations to both for their contributions!



Announcements:

  • Both Literacy Committee & Board were holding brief meetings following the regular meeting.

  • Members were reminded to please complete the district survey prior to Feb. 1. The results will be used at the PETS conference to plan for next year.

  • Andy Latham reported on a successful event at the WMU basketball game last week. Total of 94 attended, Jim McIntyre was thanked for planning program, Matt Bates for planning great food this year, and President Steve was praised for his basketball skills in front of the crowd at halftime!! And, WMU won the game.

Thanks to Andy for his committee’s great work.
Happy Bucks:

Jose Santamaria for two kids in Loy Norrix production; Bob Huiskamp with a suggestion that we follow Beyonce and lip-sync the national anthem; Dianne Shaffer with thanks to the club for making her son’s 6th birthday at the WMU basketball event a very exciting one.
Program: Mushtaq Luqmani introduced our speaker, JenRandall, CEO of Maestro, an impressive local tech company with 37 employees and global customers. She shared information about other tech companies in the area, such as S2 games, also growing rapidly, and visibly, with their new Gorilla billboards around Kalamazoo! Jen is a former teacher and coach. Maestro uses those skills in developing learning products and mobile apps for client companies to use in training and development.

Maestro was established in 1997, uses an open and collaborative concept. With a unique space above Food Dance, it looks similar to the famous Google employee environment!


Her message was that Kalamazoo is a great environment for these young tech companies to grow—with new things like Start UpWeekend and Pitch Zoo being aimed at nurturing innovation and supporting new startups. Her opinion is that we could become Silicon Zoo—following Silicon Valley in CA, Silicon Alley in NY City, and Silicon Slopes in Salt Lake City! (Check out their unique website: www.meetmaestro.com.)


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