Rotary Club of St. Paul #10
October 12, 2021, Hybrid Signature Lunch Meeting: "Reflections of the American Dream from a St. Paul Hmong Girl"  Bao Vang, Vice President of Communications for Better Business Bureau serving Minnesota and North Dakota
This week's noon speaker is Bao Vang, Vice President of Communications for Better Business Bureau serving Minnesota and North Dakota.
Bao Vang started her career as a news anchor and reporter at WSAW-TV in Wausau, Wisconsin and then at WBAY-TV in Green Bay, Wisconsin, where she was the first Hmong news anchor in both communities. Bao transitioned into training high school students in journalism and communications at ThreeSixty Journalism at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. She earned both her Bachelor's, studying broadcast journalism and Spanish, and her Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) at the University of St. Thomas. She lives in the East Metro with her husband, Noah, and three children, Nina, Sean and Sasha.
October 5, 2021 Rotary in Review: Joe Spencer
President Todd Nicholson welcomed people to the University Club and led attendees in the 4-way Test.  President Nicholson thanked meeting volunteers including Greeter Shelly Rucks, Carolyn Will for introducing our speaker, and tech volunteers Ken Crabb and Dave Wolfgram.
September & October birthdays were celebrated with cupcakes from Dave Dominick.
Ruth Petermann has joined our club as Director of Membership.  Her first day was October 4th.  She has deep Rotary experience, including recently serving as President of Hudson Daybreak Rotary Club.  President Nicholson thanked the search committee chaired by Heidi Fischer.  Ruth spoke briefly and is excited to be working with Club 10!
Carolyn Will introduced Joe Spencer, President, Saint Paul Downtown Alliance
The Saint Paul Downtown Alliance is dedicated to driving vitality and jobs in downtown St Paul.  Joe started out noting that it's been a rough year and a half for downtowns.  He feels proud of what the Downtown Alliance been able to accomplish in a difficult environment. 
St Paul is the 64th largest city in the United States.  The 63 larger cities all had a Business Improvement District.  How it works:  commercial property owners petition the city to levy an additional assessment that goes back to property owners to provide additional services.  Core activities include improving safety outcomes & perceptions, having an Ambassador program, landscaping, events and promotions.  
Saint Paul normally has 55,000 workers. Downtown residential population has grown from 5K to 10K. Normally 8-10M visitors for arts, culture, sports, restaurants.  Workforce and visitors to downtown have seen dramatic declines throughout Covid, though entertainment venues are coming back.
The Downtown Alliance created a welcome back campaign -- deployed in spring 2021.  Three main components:
- Make downtown safe & clean
- Remind people of what is special about downtown, a vibrant environment.  Delivered 343 events over the summer including the Jazz Festival.
- Marketing campaign -- telling people about why we are great.  They created the orange STPL sculpture, 40 videos about favorite places, and more
Joe described the Alliance's Safety Communications Center.  Dispatchers coordinate with police, work right in their office.  There are typically 6-8 police officers out around downtown in pairs.  There are also 125 safety / security officers in private buildings.  The Downtown Alliance is working to get private security officers talking to each other through the Safety Communications network, so they can share information about activity happening downtown.  The team also connects people in mental health situations with social services, instead of all of these cases being handed by the police.  The Alliance has also deployed 16 people in downtown walking around, removing litter & grafiti.
Crime statistics for June, July & August 2021 show improvement.  There has been a 23% reduction in crime vs 2020, and downtown St Paul is 10% under the 5 year average.  The Alliance's efforts are in concert with a lot of police overtime, increase in capacity for people experiencing homelessness, and other services
Bottom line -- if you're ready to come downtown, downtown is ready for you!  We need you, your family & friends to come back!
Checkout their website:, where you can sign up for weekly newsletter on what's happening in downtown Saint Paul
Laura Nichols-Endres
REMINDER: Rotary Flex Members
The Board recently announced that Rotary Flex Members will now be paying their $25 lunch fees onsite instead of being billed afterward. Rotary Flex Membership is the new category comprised of the former
  • Senior Active
  • Under 40
  • COVID Relief Categories.
We will have a Square credit card reader on hand at meetings for your convenience. Checks and cash are also accepted. Please see Jodi at the registration desk on your way in to make the payment. 
Winter Spark - Save the Date
The Winter Spark Gala will be at 5:30 PM on Thursday, Dec 2, 2021 at Dove Hill. Registration will open soon.

For more news and background:

Hybrid Inspiration Lounge:
University Club or Online via Zoom
Oct 19, 2021
5:01 PM - 6:01 PM
Hybrid Signature Lunch Meeting: Monica Jones, Program Manager, LifeHaven of Metro Homeless Youth Services, Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota
Zoom & InterContinental St. Paul Riverfront
Oct 26, 2021
12:00 PM - 1:15 PM
Hybrid Inspiration Lounge:
University Club or Online via Zoom
Nov 02, 2021
5:01 PM - 6:01 PM
Hybrid Signature Lunch Meeting: "Refugee Resettlement" Steve Young, Global Executive Director, Caux Round Table for Moral Capitalism
Zoom & InterContinental St. Paul Riverfront
Nov 09, 2021
12:00 PM - 1:15 PM
Board Meeting
Rondo Center of Diverse Expression
Nov 10, 2021
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
View entire list
Donate now to the Saint Paul Rotary Foundation
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Rotary Club of St. Paul #10
Todd Nicholson
President Elect
Dave Dominick
Paul Meekin
Heidi Fisher
Laura Nichols-Endres
Immediate Past President
Jason Bradshaw
Director Emeritus
Kenneth W. Crabb, M.D.
Jeffrey Baidoo
Kathy Bjerke
Pat Brault
Rita Dibble
Jennifer Evers
Aaron Gjerde
David Kline
Kenneth Schaefer
Carolyn Will
St. Paul Rotary Foundation
Carla Hauge        
Vice President 
John Chandler      
Sarah Kolar        
Jerry Faletti    
Chuck Whitaker         
Linda Mulhern         
Michael-jon Pease        
Jason Bradshaw
Jennifer Evers        
Member Birthdays
Sarah Kolar
October 7
Elisa Rasmussen
October 15
Patricia (Pat) Hartford
October 18
V. Francis Luikart II
October 20
John Guthmann
October 21
Dion Powers
October 22
David Clutter
October 23
Beth Naughton
November 1
Stephen B. Young
November 2
Robert J. Hoyle
November 4
Donovan Schwichtenberg
November 6
Mary Knudsen
November 6
Todd Lefko
November 6
Sue Katsiotis
November 11
Robert W. Jones, D.D.S.
November 12
Jim Delamater
November 15
Richard H. Zehring
November 15
Cindy Shiely
November 16
Cary Felbab
November 26
Mark Stutrud
November 29
Russell Hampton
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