South Texas District of Optimist International
Governor Irvin G. Williams

A Message from the Governor
Wow! What a first quarter. Now that the holiday season is over, most people are back to work, school, and participating in other activities. We must keep our sight on our goals. This is the time to review our plans, evaluate where we are in regards to our District and Club Goals, adjust our course (if needed), and continue to strive to reach our overall goals. As a District, we want to make an impact by ‘Bringing Out the Best in Kids.’ We can accomplish this task by getting more involved with kid’s activities and reaching out to more kids. Everyone in the District should be proud because the South Texas District is also making an international impact. When we developed the District Goal, we wanted it to be S.M.A.R.T. The goals were specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time bound. It passed the S.M.A.R.T. test. I am pleased that most clubs adopted these goals as their own. I commend them. The goal of 3-3-3 (3 new members per club, 3 new dime-a-day members per club, and 3 new clubs to be built) resonated both throughout the District and Optimist International. We currently have the most members enrolled in Optimist International since October 1st, we are among the top ranked Districts within Optimist International for club building with the establishment of a new club, and we are also ranked number one in Optimist International Foundation for donations. We must remain focused, remain active, and remain diligent in pursuing our District goals. Everything else will fall into place. “ In everything we do, our own thoughts can help us succeed, or they can help us fail. Maintain a positive attitude.” Catherine Pulsifer We have established a solid foundation and can now build on it. Let’s keep our District strong. Let’s continue to get involved and focus on the projects we have planned for the kids. We should encourage more kids to participate. After all, they are benefitting from our guidance and we are benefitting from the gain in positive mental health we get from them. This is a win – win situation. Let the District continue to grow and let’s continue to “Bring Out the Best in Kids.” Spring is near and warm weather is approaching. This is the sign of new growth. Trees are sprouting new leaves, buds are blooming into flowers, and hummingbirds are spreading pollen throughout nature. Allow this to be an inspiration for us to increase our membership growth. Our plans are solid and we will continue to ‘Stay the Course.’ We will remain being a strong and solid team. We will continue to be a great organization. The kids in our community need us more now than ever before. The bullying, violent crimes, and safety concerns in our schools cannot be overlooked. We are one of the first lines of defense that the community can turn to for assistance. We can help educate our kids and change this negative action and behavior. The needs of the community will provide the challenges and circumstances that promote optimism. We must be open to the probability of events that provide hope, that provide a sense of meaning in our lives, and that establish a path for us and our youth to follow. We are on track and headed in the right direction and must allow the momentum to keep building and allow the District to gain strength so that we can meet our District and Club goals for this year. We will ‘Stay the Course!’
Optimist International Club of the year Guidelines CLICK HERE...
Hill Country Optimist Club
The Hill Country Optimist Club was formed February 18, 2015, sponsored by the San Antonio Optimist Club and the Metrocom Optimist Club. Pictured are the new club officers with VP Jan Oord Graves.

Optimist Club of Pearland
The Optimist Club of Pearland was organized February 12th with 34 new Optimist members. Sponsored by the Optimist Club of East Fort Bend County and the Optimist Club of Fort Sam Houston, the Club was brought in by Field Representative Ron Graves with assistance from Regional Vice President Jan Oord-Graves. Builders of Excellance were Karen Kovar and Governor Ervin Williams, both members of East Fort Bend, and Fay and Jack Hopkins, members of Fort Sam Houston. All were in attendance, as were four additional members of the East Fort Bend Club.
San Antonio Golfers
Some members of the San Antonio Club are starting a regular golf outing.
The Optimist Duffers plan to golf at the Olmos Basin on Tuesdays at 2:00 PM. Please contact Stan Win-chester if you would like to golf. or (210) 241-6017
You can even order an Optimist Duffer Cap from Stan for $15 each.
Gateway Club's First Project
Gateway Optimist Club of Laredo, the youngest and newly formed club in South Texas District had its first fundrais er and community project. I was very proud and excited to attend this event. The fundraiser included selling raffles for three items donated from Best Buy. This event raised $2,000. The community project was a Christmas party for the families and kids who resided at the Bethany House. This included five families and over 20 kids. Santa was present to lift the spirits and hand out gifts.  The kids were asked in advanced what they wanted for Christmas and each kid and family received exactly what they asked for. To see the happy faces on the kids and to see the parents cry let everyone involved know that this community project was a success.
The community project included receiving gifts from Santa, breaking a piñata, playing arcade games, receiving gift bags and assorted gifts from the Club, and pizza from Peter Piper Pizza. The families were able to take pizza home with them. The Club demonstrated unity by wearing their Club shirts designed for this community project. The Club President Guadalupe Sandoval stated that during this holiday season she felt that this was a needed community project because so many kids go throughout this season without knowing the importance of giving and receiving.  One parent stood up and thanked the Gateway Club for having this event because her 7 year old daughter had never celebrated Christmas and she neither knew nor believed in the spirit of Christmas. Mother and daughter cried from happiness. 
Bethany House started in 1982 as a soup kitchen to feed 18 people.  The life and purpose of the Bethany House is to ”feed the hungry and shelter the homeless.”  Bethany House was named after the city of Bethany, Israel.  It is noteworthy because it had significance during Jesus’ era.
Bethany is a small village outside of Jerusalem. For Jesus it was a place where he could go when he needed to rest and, for a little while, escape the cares and problems of the world. The founder, Father McNaboe, a Catholic Priest, wanted Bethany House to also be a place of respite, a place where anyone who was hungry could come and get something to eat, a cup of coffee, and temporarily escape the cares of their day to day existence.”  For over 30 years, Bethany House has continued to carry on the original mission to “feed the hungry and shelter the homeless”. Today they have grown to an entity that serves more than 30,000 meals each month to the indigent, the homeless, the homebound, or anyone who is hungry and asks for their help. They are the only agency of its kind in Laredo. They serve three hot meals a day six days per week, deliver meals to the homes for the elderly and disabled and prepare meals for children’s programs throughout the city.
--Governor Irvin G. Williams
Council of Presidents
The San Antonio Council of Presidents met Saturday morning February 14th with 9 Optimists representing 7 Optimist Clubs present. Our goals is to work more closely together and to assist each other in various Club projects. More information will follow.
Christmas Party
The Fort Sam Houston Optimist Club had its annual Christmas Party for the patients at the San Antonio Military Medical Center Pediatric Oncology/Hematology unit on December 13th. Over 180 patients and family members were in attendance. There was lunch for all, and many games for the kids. A face painter and balloon twister were very popular. There were prizes for all the kids, and Santa's visit was very special.
Other Holiday Happenings
New Junior Optimist Club
The Metrocom Optimist Club built a new Junior Optimist Club at Elaine S. Schlather Intermediate in Live Oak. The Installation, conducted by O. I. Vice President Jan Oord Graves was held November 14, 2014, with numerous District officers and past officers present. Pictured below is Metrocom President Nancy Mason, the kids, and the Principal of the school.
Gateway Optimist Club of Laredo
Some of the 30 members of the new Gateway Optimist Club at the New Club Follow Up Program put on by Fay Hopkins on December 2nd.

Young Texan/TexAnne
New information, forms and instructions are available for the Young Texan/TexAnne program. CLICK HERE to see the details
Zone 6 Competition
Zone 6 Lt. Governor Jack Hopkins announced the 2014-2015 Zone 6 Competition at the November 8th Zone Meeting. To see the current score sheet, with its Navy theme, CLICK HERE...
Optimist International has a new official supplier for Optimist International logo and trademark items, Shumsky, Inc. Contact Information is:
(877) 678-2582
Fax: (800) 414-8943
Read Optimist International Executive Director Benny Ellerbe's announcement letter. CLICK HERE...

Our District includes 99 Texas Counties, 100,000 Square Miles, Population over 16,000,000, at least 4,000,000 Children, BUT NOT ENOUGH OPTIMISTS....