Rotary Club of
Allentown West
Pres. Ralph Witcher
Area 1 Asst. Gov. Barb Bottitta
District 7430 Governor
Janet Kolepp
Wednesdays at 7:30 a.m.
Here are the AWRC
Board and Committee
 Members for 2020-21
President - Ralph Witcher
President- Elect - Gail Micca
Vice President  -  John Scott
Immediate Past President - Amir Famili
Secretary -John Scott
Treasurer - Chris Blechschmidt
Sergeant at Arms -     Mitch Huston
Service Committee Chair - Gail Micca
RI Foundation and International Grants Chair - PDG Herb Klotz
Fundraising Chair - Len Salines
Evening Meeting Chair  -
Public Image Chair - Marlene Heller
Membership Chair - Mustafa Jaffer
Youth Services Co-Chairs - Bill Weber and Sue Weber



Pres. Ralph Witcher is  the Greeter while we are using Zoom.
The next Happy Hour meeting will be Thursday evening July 24th starting at  5:30 P.M.
      July 27  --  NEW DATE --  District Changeover VIA  ZOOM.
      Oct 24  --  Yvette Palmer 5K race to end Polio at LCCC in Schnecksville
Aug 19, 2020 7:30 AM
Health Insurance During the Time of Covid-19
Aug 26, 2020 7:30 AM
20-21 District 7430 Annual Club Visit & Kickoff Presentation
Sep 02, 2020
Challenges and opportunites in running the Allentown police dept
Sep 09, 2020 7:30 AM
The Impact of COVID-19 on the Emotional Wellbeing of "School-Aged" Children in the Lehigh Valley
Sep 16, 2020 7:30 AM
Polio Truths
Sep 23, 2020 7:30 AM
Valley Youth House: Serving Vulnerable Youth & Families in our Region
Sep 30, 2020 7:30 AM
Vaccines Work: RI's Focus on Disease Prevention
Oct 07, 2020 7:30 AM
Creating the American Dream
Oct 14, 2020 7:30 AM
Classification Talk
View entire list
AW Rotarians do a lot of good things and take a lot of pictures. In order to maintain the best quality photos on file, it is requested that the original be sent first to Gary Heller, our RC Photographer.
Each of us should seek out good candidates for our Rotary Club. Ask them to breakfast or to our Thursday evening meeting.
Excuse me, do you have her email?
Yes! And so do you!      If you are a member of Allentown West Rotary, you have a ClubRunner (CR) account, and your phone number and e-mail address are in CR.
Need to contact a member for any reason? Download the ClubRunner app – it’s free, of course – and sign in! If you don’t know your password and login information, call Bill Palmer, and he will walk you through the process.  Why Bill? Because everyone knows how to get in touch with him! (Hint: just reply to this newsletter!)
Why would I want to use ClubRunner?
ClubRunner helps to organize us as a club. It is the platform for all our communications, and offers members an opportunity to stay in touch on various levels.
Here are just some reasons people use CR:
  • To call a member on club business, such as to get a ride to a meeting, find out the logistics of an event, or ask for help in getting club business done.
  • To make plans for a social gathering.
  • To check on their birthday so you could send a card. Or their address, same reason.
  • To check on their address before you head over to their house for an event, meeting, or to drop something off.
  • To find their email or phone number. Or work address.
  • Because you’ve forgotten the name of their spouse and you were up all night trying to remember it.
  • Find out the proper spelling of a member’s name.
What’s your best use of Club Runner?
                            By Marlene Heller
      Please suggest or request speakers and topics for future meetings and send  your ideas to our President, Amir Famili.
Please remember that the Collection jar is at the registration desk for cash and check contributions.
     As you become aware of any member of our Rotary family that would benefit from our support with cards, flowers or visits, please notify Jean Machamer at
Kingdom Life Food Pantry:-  Jean Masiko –
Parkland Snack Packing:   Gail Micca
Lowhill Food Pantry and Northwestern Snack Packing: Amir Famili 
Membership:     Mustafa Jaffer
Public Image    Marlene Heller
TT6:  Len Salines –
 Dining Out:  Jean Machamer –
Evening Meeting:  Barbara Kistler
Purple Pinkie Services: Barb Kistler
Purple Pinkie 5K at LCCC  John Scott
Park Cleanup:  Dennis Houser –
Miracle League:  Dale Heffner –
Barb Kistler –
Meals on Wheels:  Dorothy Bloom –
Kids of Character:  Gwen Pongracz –
Speaker suggestions:   Amir Famili –
Website Editor: Marlene Heller
RLI: website        
Threads of Change - Foster care support   Dale Heffner
Check out the AWRC
Facebook Page
See Home Page link
Bulletin Editor
Bill Palmer
Russell Hampton
ClubRunner Mobile
Holger Knaack
Holger Knaack, a member of the Rotary Club of Herzogtum Lauenburg-Mölln, Germany, has been selected to serve as president of Rotary International in 2020-21.
         QUOTE of the WEEK --
The best kind of existence is to exist for others.”
               ― Abhijit Naskar
Supporting the environment becomes Rotary’s new area of focus 
The Rotary Foundation Trustees and RIBoard of Directors both unanimously approved adding a new area of focus: supporting the environment. Creating a distinct area of focus for the environment will give Rotary members even more ways to bring about positive change in the world and increase our impact.
     June 26, 2020
Community Fundraiser 2020
 Support our Community by taking a chance in our Community Fundraiser! Three prizes, with a Top Prize of $1,000, SECOND IS $500 AND THIRD IS $250. Drawings are on September 9, 2020.
All proceeds will support charitable projects including:
         9,000 pounds of fresh produce delivered to the Lowhill Food Pantry in 2019
         5,000 snack Packs for the Parkland School District & Northwestern Lehigh School Districts
         Meals on Wheels – provided coolers to keep food cold
         Post-Secondary School Scholarships – Northwestern Lehigh & Parkland School High Schools & Lehigh Carbon Community College (LCCC)
         Lehigh Valley Youth Leadership and Ethics Conference
         Camp Neidig – Youth Leadership Programs
         Community Bike Works
         Dictionary Project for Third Grade Students
         Engineers Without Borders – Sierra Leone – construction/ renovation of medical facilities
         ShelterBox – international charitable disaster relief International Youth Exchange Program
         International Educational Scholarships – Shinsen Children’s Orphanage – Japan
June 27, 2020
See the AW Rotary cars lined along the highway on a cloudy, drizzly Saturday morning.
And more than a pickup load of garbage was collected and piled up at one spot for PennDOT to pickup.
     Reported by Dale Heffner

Restaurants and providers who have supported our Tempting Tastes events are now hungry for our support. Please consider ordering from them when you are looking for a break from your own cooking! You can also support them with the purchase of gift cards, for yourself or others.


Please remember to say that you are a member of the Allentown West Rotary Club.
There were eight of us --  counting Dale’s 2 year old grandson  --  on line for our Thursday, June 25th Happy Hour meeting, most with a drink in hand. We shared some stories and logged off after about 30 minutes.
Gwenn Carr is happy that at last the Beauty Parlors are opening for business.
The Klotz’s are planning a long awaited trip to South Carolina soon.
Bill Palmer is happy that his 3 garage doors now are painted the same color after 3 years.
Gwenn and Gary Englehardt are building a garage at their NJ home large enough to hold 2 cars and their boat.
Allentown West Rotary Club
ZOOM Meeting Notes  July 1, 2020
Today was a Zoom meeting and  there were 36 of us on line. After 15 minutes of talking amongst ourselves our Greeter and outgoing President Amir Famili, opened the meeting at 7:45 A.M.   P-E Ralph Witcher gave a very nice invocation with a special mention for Bill Weber having surgery tomorrow.
DG Janet Kolepp, Beth. MS RC’ DGE Bob Hobaugh, Kutztown, RC; Pat Witcher, Ralph’s wife; and Capt. Nick Millward,  a Peace Fellowship candidate calling in from Japan.
 Ralph Witcher began the meeting by having the members recite The Pledge of Allegiance to the U.S. Flag. Then he led us in reciting the Four Way Test.
Pres. Amir thanks all “first responders” and other Essential Workers for what they do and asks all to pray for them.
The ten AW Rotary cars lined up along highway 222 on a cloudy, drizzly Saturday morning June 27. The members created more than a little pickup load of garbage and piled it up at one spot for Penn DOT to pickup. See separate article.
Restaurants and providers are now hungry for our support. Please consider ordering from them when you are looking for a break from your own cooking! You can also support them with the purchase of gift cards, for yourself or others.
President Amir Famili has suspended all AWRC face-to-face  meetings until further notice. ZOOM meetings are now scheduled for each Wednesday at 7:30 A.M.
Wednesday July 8th starting at 7:30 a.m.  We will use Zoom to meet together with appropriate distancing. Our program will be  Captain Nick Millward telling us about his Journey from Northwestern Lehigh Interact Club to United States Marine Corps.
Pres. Amir conducted this part and kept score on who owes how much money.
Amir Famili said that it seems that when you hit age 65 and get a Medicare card, things go wrong so you have to use it.
Halyna Stegura is happy to report that son Mike completed his 60 mile run from Philadelphia to Allentown last weekend and just was sore and he ran again the next day. He raised money for the homeless in Phila. Halyna thanks Gary Heller for his great photos.
Gary Englehardt is happy that their new dock on Barnegat Bay now is finished. And he was happy to have Dan Crane on with us today.
Bill Palmer is happy that a friend and he went to a local restaurant and had a pizza and a beer while resting on their patio.
Amir described a chemical and method of spraying trees to get rid of something.
Bob Hobaugh said that last Sunday his car club had a tour through western Lehigh County  --  AW country.
Brad Maier is happy to have children’s group activities starting up.
Gail Micca is delighted with the progress of the new garden Project.
Chuck Ehninger called in happily at the beach in Saginaw Bay in Michigan. We could hear the birds in the background.
Ron Coleman is $5 happy to report the pent up demand to buy and sell houses. There are many clients coming from New York City.
Laurie Grube, Vice President / Regional Manager at Riverview Bank, has been named Business Woman of the year in the Lehigh Valley.
Today was our annual changeover from the Presidency of Amir Famili to that of Ralph Witcher.
Outgoing President Amir reviewed some of the accomplishments during 2019-20, starting with the Membership report from Gwenn Carr:
2019-2020 AWRC Membership Plan Input
**  Obtain feedback on the Health of the Club
Completed Club Experience Health Check – 7/25/19 and 8/7/19
Completed Membership Health Check – 10/16/19 and 10/24/19
Completed Image Health Check – 11/19/19
**  Obtain feedback on AWRC Rotarians’ experience at meetings
Completed two 3 question surveys during the weeks of 9/25/19 and 1/8/20
2019-2020 AWRC Membership Plan Goals
Retain 100% of current members - ?
Recruit 10 new members - 8
Have a least two members of the PM club on the Membership team - 0
Grow the Membership team to 5 members – 4
Develop, complete and present an AWRC video
October 1, 2019
Participate in the Non-Profit Awareness Expo
Completed on 10/5/19
Retention of Current Members
Recognition events
Pancake Day – December 4, 2019
Thank you for being a Rotarian Night – November 14, 2019
Rotary Fun Facts
Rotarian of the Month
Stress Ball Awards
Support opportunities for service
Monthly recognition for participating in service
Provided healthy and unhealthy snacks
Recruiting New Members
Encourage Service Committee to provide a variety of opportunities
Highway Cleanup
East Penn Neighbors helping Neighbors
Center for Vision Project
Invite “leads” to participate in service projects and special events
Food Pantries, Center for Vision Project
Hold “Recognition of Service to the Community“ event to reach out to other organizations
Pay the first six months of dues for five new Rotarians
Marlene Heller reported that our website was changed to a “Mobile Friendly” one And its contents mostly describe who we are. Our Facebook page now concentrates on what we do.
Also we are doing better in the Social Media area with our Facebook work and our Public Image.
Marlene also worked for the District 7430 with her monthly CAREmongers reports. And she is the “Brand Guardian” for AWRC.
Gail Micca has submitted a great report listing and explaining the fantastic good deeds by our AW Rotarians during the 2019-20 Rotary year. The report is posted on our website. She was very busy as well.
PDG Herb Klotz gave a report about our Rotary Foundation. Herb said that TRF has been good to AWRC with 3 grants now and 2 more coming. He noted the Global Grant for the hospital in Sierra Leone, and that EWB and 3 D7430 RCs have donated funds to replace  what we received.
Herb said that AW Rotarians came through last month and we now have donated about $14,000 to TRF Annual Fund, beating our goal by 40%.Also last year AW Rotarians donated over $5,000 to PolioPlus. And we ran the Polio 5K race that raised over $60,000 from the district to eradicate Polio.
Herb also said that AW has two more members now who have joined  the Paul Harris Society.
Herb then announced new Paul Harris Fellow recognitions for:
         Ernie Boll                    PHF +6
         Jean Masiko               PHF +5
         Chris Blechschmidt   PHF
         Marlene Heller            PHF
         Amir Famili                 PHF +3
Amir reviewed some highlights of last year. We are proud that we only missed 2 meetings in March and started our Zoom meetings on April 1st, one of the first RCs in the district to do so. And the pandemic just did not stop AW Rotarians from doing all of the planned projects and adding more.
Amir firmly believes that our regular praying together has helped members with issues to get better. He thanks us all for our support.
Amir then brought up two AW traditions when changing years. First he showed the Painting from the 1980s given to us by the father of our exchange student. He promised to deliver it to Ralph.
Then Amir showed the very special egg from the Ukraine provided by  Dr. Ihor Fedoriw. It represents a new season and goes to the new President, Ralph.
President Ralph Witcher thanked Amir for his support and guidance. He said that we have a really great Rotary club. And he thanked  the many committee chairs for making the good things happen last year.
Using some slides, Ralph noted that DG Janet is due to meet with us officially on August 26. He also said that we need to fill some “board” seats and asks for volunteers. Ralph likes families, especially his own. Then he expressed his thanks to Herb for his leadership last year.
Ralph wants to grow our membership, and he will be asking members to “adopt a project.” And he will be doing a monthly survey within the club.
Dennis Houser reviewed the details of our fundraiser that starts today and ends on Sept. 9th. See the separate article. Please buy tickets, sell tickets, and tell your friends to buy more tickets. We are hoping to net at least $20,000.
Dennis reminds us of all of the cash we have saved by not buying breakfasts since mid-March. Len Salines thanks his committee and all of us for supporting this event.
Pres. Ralph led us in the saying “One profits most who serves best.


 Here is a link to our District Governor Herb's latest Newsletter:


   Give it a try. It is informative and entertaining.
Al Lewis            Jul 01
Mustafa Jaffer   Jul 05
Gary Heller        Jul 21
Wendy Weaver  Jul 21
John Pongracz  Jul 26
Bob Machamer  Jul 28
Bob Costello      Jul 29
Halyna Stegura Jul 30



Sandi & Ernie                       Jul 06 1956         64 years
Sukaina & Mustafa Jaffer     Jul 06 2001         19 years



Bob Nagle          28 years   Jul 01 1992
Jeffrey Kistler    16 years    Jul 07 2004
Lori Peters         1 year        Jul 12 2019
Amir Famili        4 years      Jul 20 2016
Mike Gschwendtner  10 years    Jul 21 20