Governor-Elect Irvin Williams is looking for a few good Optimists to fill out his leadership team for the 214-2015 year. Look at the list of leadership opportunities available, then print the form and send your desired leadership position to Governor-Elect Irvin. CLICK HERE FOR THE LEADERSHIP FORM
The Optimist Club of Fort Sam Houston put on its 12th annual Christmas Party for the kids in the Pediatric Oncology Unit at BAMC/SAMMC on Fort Sam Houston. The kids, their parents and siblings had a great time. To see the pictures, CLICK HERE...
STOP! READ THIS!
IS YOUR CLUB DOING A YOUTH ORATORICAL CONTEST? IF NOT, WHY NOT?
As District Oratorical Contest Chair, I believe that my initial responsibility is to promote the Oratorical Contest at the Club level. In my opinion, the Oratorical Contest is NOT a scholarship program (although it is, in part): IT IS A YOUTH SERVICE PROJECT! It gives our young people a great opportunity for personal growth and experience. The process of conducting the Contest also gives your Club great public exposure – to the youth, their parents, local schools and local media. Don’t hesitate because your Club has never done the Contest before. BE OPTIMISTIC: YOU CAN DO IT! Optimist International has published a good step-by-step booklet, available at www.optimist.org/e/member/scholarship4.cfm and for further advice you can review my “South Texas Guide to the Optimist Oratorical Contest,” available on the STX District website. Early January is the best time to start the process, with a March Contest as your goal.
If you need to contact me, I’m available at firstname.lastname@example.org or (409) 763-2454.
Robert E. Bastien
Valley High Academic Awards
Guest Speaker Charles Gonzalez, a winner of the same award in the 1980's, and Pres. Tom Hutcheson are honoring the winners from 8 middle schools. The winners are 6th, 7th, and 8th graders who earned the highest grade point average during the first six weeks.
SOME INSTALLATION PICTURES
Lt. Governor John Blackwell's school supply project pictures:
Valley-Hi Academic Awards
The Valley Hi Optimist Club Middle School Academic Awards Cermony was held May 21st.
Metrocom's PSBA Kids
Metrocom Optimist Club's PSBA kids were invited to perform at the HEB nutrition and fitness day at the Witte Museum in San Antonio.
They performed and showed children how to balance and use the equipment. It was a real hit.
EASTER EGG HUNT
Dickinson, Texas: One of our newest clubs, the Dickinson Optimist Club, put on one of the best events of the year. It was their first annual Easter Egg Hunt that attracted over two hundred people. The entire city supported the event with the Fire Department and Police on hand to assist with the families. Wal-Mart donated the eggs, candy and baskets. There were donations of money to purchase thirty-six bikes for the children. In addition, there were three eggs that had a picture of a $50.00 dollar bill that entitled them to the cash prize for three lucky kids. A heartwarming story was when a little five year old girl gave the bike she won to another little boy who are sitting on the curb crying because he didn’t get a bike. It was an event that brought families together and joy to many children. Optimism does bring out the best in kids and ourselves. Think about hosting an Easter Egg Hunt in your community next year.
Students of the Month
The Mainland-Texas City Club recognized Two outstanding students. One is headed to Texas State and the other to the University of Texas.
METROCOM ROAD SIGN
Metrocom presented their new road sign to the City of Live Oak, with Leroy Kowalik, Finance Director, The City of Live Oak; Jordan Mantley, Ecconomic and Community Developement Manager, The City of Live Oak; Eric Sanchez, President, Live Oak Economic Development Corporation; Julie Palmer, Executive Assistant, The City of Live Oak; Mary M. Dennis, Mayor, The City of Live Oak; Delbert Berryman, Member, Live Oak Economic Development Corporation; Richard Lamothe, Member, Live Oak Economic Development Corporation.
Later, the sign was placed on the highway with Front Row
Ron Woisin, Member, Metrocom Optimist Club of Live Oak; Mary M. Dennis, Mayor, The City of Live Oak; Chalotte Woisin, President, Metrocom Optimist Club of Live Oak;
Leroy Kowalik, Finance Director, The City of Live Oak; Charles Foster, Fire Chief, The City of Live Oak
South Texas District of Optimist International
3rd Quarter District Meeting
May 2-4, 2014
Rate is $89.00 + Tax
Standard King or Double Bed Room
Check In 4:00pm/Check-Out 12 Noon – Free Parking
Cancellations must be made by 6:00pm on May 1, 2014 to avoid cancellation fee
Ask for Optimist Rate
Refer To Group Code “OPT”
You can shake sand from your shoes but it will never leave your soul, memories made at Emerald Beach last a lifetime!
As we all reflex on a wonderful holiday season filled with family and friends, thankful of what we have accomplished and looking forward to a new year we need to remember that not everyone is as glorious as we are. There are many children throughout the world and even in our own back yards that are hurting and suffering with cancer. We would like for all Optimist Clubs to participate in the childhood cancer campaign. This program was designed to make everyone aware of this disease, provide assistance and to help support families and research. Optimist International has a large campaign to work with Johns Hopkins and donate a million dollars to help find a cure. This is a big and very optimistic venture to take on. It is important that all of us remember that even a small contribution will go a long way to help find a cure.
NEW CLUB NEW CLUB
The East Fort Bend County Optimist Club was organized on Sunday, November 24th with 25 members. Builders of Excelence were Fay Hopkins and Irvin Williams from the Optimist Club of Fort Sam Houston and Joe Smith and Jesse Cantu from the Sam Houston State University Optimist Club. Jack Hopkins was the O.I. Field Representative.
A MESSAGE FROM THE GOVERNOR
South Texas Optimists, what an honor to serve as your Governor for the most outstanding district in all of Optimist International. My commitment to all of you is that I will give a 110 percent to make our District an organization that is dedicated to serving the youth of the southern part of this great State of Texas. You as well know, that it is not my quest, but our quest to serve more children. This cannot be done without the participation of all members to Follow the Three R's; Re-evaluate, Re-Commit, and Re-Energize.
Why are we Optimists? To provide hope and a positive vision by bringing out the best in kids. When you were first approached by someone you respected to consider becoming an optimist, you came in with enthusiasm and committed to helping as many children as you could. Whether that happened last month, last year, or 30 years ago, that initial spark needs to be re-ignited. Nothing will happen if all of us do not get engaged with the activities of our clubs. If you think that we are doing enough, consider this fact, the population of young children in Texas under 18 is approximately 7.1 million. Divide this number by the members of the South Texas District and that equates to 4184 youth per member to be served. Can you see the need and urgency to get engaged.
Why I am an Optimist! Giving back to the community has been my mantra since I retired after 20 years of military service from the United States Air Force in April of 1983. I also spent another 20 years of State of Texas employment with the Texas Rehabilitation Commission and the Texas Youth Commission, retiring in January 2004. As a child in elementary school, I stuttered really bad that it made me an introvert. Luck would have it that my homeroom teacher in the seventh grade was also a speech teacher. She encouraged me to take a speech class and took time out from her busy schedule to teach me breathing techniques and pausing to release my anxiety when speaking. I over came my fears and placed myself in situations where I had to face the public in the part-time jobs that I held while in high school. We have all done acts of kindness without realizing the impact that those deeds have had on people interactions. This is why Optimism is personal to me!
Community Service: In the mid nineties I joined a group of Vietnam veterans committed to promoting patriotism in the community by providing outreach to the youth. What I did not know at that time was that half of the members of this organization where Optimist members of the Austin Greater Southwest Optimist Club. It was not until the summer of 2008 that I joined this club. I served as Club President during 2010-2011, Lt. Governor Zone 4 during 2011-2012 and again as Club President during 2012-2013. I was duly elected by the citizens of Buda, Texas in November 2012 to serve as City Councilman. A month out from the South Texas District convention in Houston, Texas held in August 2012, Gil Ortiz nominated me for the incoming Governor position and this nomination was a total surprise. During this convention I was elected incoming Governor 2013-2014.
Family Affair: My wife, Irma Montoya; my daughter, Anna Lisa Montoya and my son, Andres Montoya are all members of the Austin Greater Southwest Optimist Club. My wife and I have always instilled in our children to give back to the community by becoming involved in community projects. My oldest son, Juan Jose Montoya lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico and has 5 children. Andres has two children giving us a total of seven grandchildren.
South Texas District Theme: FOLLOW THE THREE R'S
Special thanks to Immediate Past Governor James Rankin, for all the knowledge and wisdom imparted. Also special thanks to his administration for all the support rendered, many of those members will also serve during my administration.
"The glue that holds this organization together, including the relationship between the District Governor, Lt. Governors, Club Presidents and the members is trust, and trust is based on integrity".
Governor Jose Montoya
The Towne & Country Optimist Club of San Antonio is holding their 12th annual Spring Social on April 5th. For more information about this fun event, CLICK HERE...
Read the South Texas Guide to the Optimist Oratorical Contest - Click here...
About our OI President
He’s used to the funny looks and awkward comments. Like the little boy who turned to his mother and asked, “Why does that man have crayon on his face?”
But Ron Huxley — a longtime London (Canada) jeweller about to start his one-year term as president of the Optimist International service club — attributes much of his good fortune to the fiery accident that marked him for life.
“I guess when an individual has something traumatic like that happen to them, and something that leaves you noticeably scarred, you do one of two things,” says Huxley. “Either you run and hide and withdraw from the public eye, or you learn to deal with it.
“And I guess that’s probably what has made me successful in business and my Optimist career. The fact that I was able to pick up on the fact that when people look at me, they feel uncomfortable — they don’t know what to say, they don’t know how to act. And I developed an ability to recognize that and make them feel at ease.”
Huxley suffered burns to 60% of his body when, at age 10, he and a neighbourhood friend were sleeping in a backyard tent that caught fire.
He underwent about a dozen surgeries and skin grafts, which are still evident in the facial scars that discolour his face. As well, his right hand is noticeably disabled.
But none of it slowed Huxley, who became an Optimist in 1983, two years after opening his own jewelry and goldsmith business. He served on the Optimist’s international board of directors in 1996, 2004 and 2005 and has served on 23 international committees over the years.
And now, as worldwide president, Huxley must help the Optimists grapple with a serious decline in membership; while the service club boasts about 77,000 members worldwide, that number has dropped by 100,000 since 1990.
“There are a lot of clubs out there that are struggling,” says Huxley, who lives in Lambton Shores, near Port Franks and belongs to the Optimists’ Southwestern Ontario district. “I think what we’ve got is a complacent attitude . . . (that’s) not recognizing the younger generations. We’ve lost sight of the fact that a lot of these young adults are leaders in their own right.”
Huxley says his main focus during his term as international president, which officially begins Oct. 1, will be to help recruit members.
“Many clubs see growth as an element that someone else will do,” says Huxley, 61. “And it’s my intent to bring in a focus that will allow clubs to take advantage of those within their ranks who are comfortable with asking somebody to join their club.”
But you can bet Huxley will be upbeat about the task.
“Part of what pulled me through (the childhood injury) and made me the person that I am was my dad’s sense of humour,” he says. “And his ability to show that there’s a silver lining to everything.”