Club Information

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Cedar Rapids Sunrise

Service Above Self

We meet Thursdays at 7:00 AM
Matthew 25 Office
201 3rd Ave SW
Cedar Rapids, IA  52404
United States of America
District Site
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Matthew 25 is our Community Service partner in Cedar Rapids.  We have continued to support their projects in the area, including Transform Week - improving homes in the Taylor School area in June of this year. 
Our Rotary Foundation District Grant will assist Matthew 25 on 2 projects: improving Community Garden food storage refrigeration and the Groundswell sound system.   Those projects will launch soon.
Read the Matthew 25 Newsletter for more news about our partner.  Here. 
Karen Nemecek was presented the 2019 Cedar Rapids Sunrise Rotary “Service Above Self Award” given annually to a club member who has contributed, in a unique and significant way to the club and values of Rotary. 
Nemecek has been a member of Sunrise Rotary for 11 years and has served the club as  treasurer and board member.
Nemecek, grew up in NE Iowa on a farm near West Union and attended Turkey Valley HS. She graduated from Luther College with a degree in biology and Coe College with a degree in accounting and business administration. She is a CPA and a Director at CliftonLarsonAllen Cedar Rapids.
Phil Hershner  has been named the Darrel Berry Rotarian of the Year by the Cedar Rapids Sunrise Rotary Club.  This award goes to the individual member who has embodied the Four Way Test and what it means to be a Rotarian.  Through their contributions and service, Sunrise Rotary has benefited from their positive impact.  The annual award is named to honor Sunrise Rotary's first president and founding member Darrel Berry.
Hershner has  been a Sunrise Rotary member for 12 years.  He serves as the Program Chair and is on the Sunrise Rotary Board of Directors. 
Hershner is a Wealth Management Trust Advisor at U.S. Bank in Cedar Rapids.  He is a Cedar Rapids Kennedy graduate and attended the University of Iowa and University of Iowa College of Law.
Rotary 4-Way Test
  1. Is it the truth?
  2. Is it fair to all concerned?
  3. Will it build goodwill and better friendships?
  4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned?
We had a wonderful Annual Meeting today where we heard from Michael Rozum recount the many activities and accomplishments of Sunrise Rotary during the past year.  Jon Fitch is taking on the Presidential duties for the up coming year.  Thank you Michael.  Jon, we look forward to working together as a team to fufil the Rotary Four Way Test.

Barb Willis Randall, a well-known and loved Rotarian to all metro area Rotary Clubs, shared her journey that ultimately led to her successful athletic career. From working with her older brother in the back yard taking ground balls, to being offered a volleyball scholarship at the University of Iowa-all the way to making the USA volleyball team, and even being inducted into the National Iowa Varsity Club Athletics Hall of Fame-Barb is a rock-star!

We meet at Matthew 25 on Thursday mornings to hear from different community members over coffee and breakfast. Message us if you are interested in learning more.

Thursday mornings at Matthew 25 located downtown at 201 3rd Ave SW, are a wonderful kick-off to the weekend! We have delicious breakfast catered by The Early Bird, and amazing guest speakers like Marcel from Kirkwood Community College! Our in-bound exchange student, Annie is always a joy to have as she lets us in on her experience as a high school student. If you are at all interested in being part of a professional networking group, focused on giving back to the community, shoot us a message.
Good morning Rotarians,
As a reminder, we will not be having a regularly scheduled meeting next Thursday, November 9th.  Instead, there will be a Metro-wide Rotary meeting at the Downtown Club Monday, November 6th at the DoubleTree.  The meeting is Noon – 1:00 PM with the lunch buffet being ready by 11:30.
Mary Beth Growney Selene is our speaker and her presentation is,  "The Rotary Foundation- a Living Legacy" in honor of November being Foundation Month.
There is a registration link for all clubs on the DT website.  It is on the left side of the page, under "Upcoming Events".  Click on the meeting title and it will take you to a registration page. You will register using the GUEST tab and please include our club name in the comments section.
The cost of the meals are $17 for full buffet and $12 for salad bar.  Since our club builds the cost of meals into our membership dues, you will not have to pay for lunch unless you do not normally eat breakfast at our meetings.  If that is the case, you will need to reimburse our Club for the cost of your lunch ($17 or $12).
Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns and have a great rest of the week!
We are auctioning off some wonderful items such as ski passes in Colorado, a condo in Cocoa Beach, and a years worth of car washes at Sparking Image Car Wash as well as raffling off an IPad! All are invited!
Today we welcomed David Smigel, President of Circle Computer Resources (CCR) in Cedar Rapids, to speak about the I.T. management service CCR offers to businesses in the community! Annie, our exchange student from Mexico also updated us on how her time in the U.S. is going. Mornings meeting downtown at Matthew 25 are a wonderful time! Thanks to The Early Bird for catering such a delicious breakfast spread. Next week is our Rotary Chili Cook-off at the El Kahir Shrine in Hiawatha. We will NOT have our Thursday morning meeting, but instead celebrate at chili cook-off.

When asked this morning, "why are you a member of the Sunrise Rotary?" here are some member responses:

-"I like the impact we have locally AND internationally"
-"Carrying out service above self."
-"I like the local service projects and the community relationship that comes from serving."
-"It's an opportunity to grow in leadership and make a difference in the lives I care about."
- "Interpersonal development, networking, and making a difference."
-"Learning about local organizations and the services they provide this community."

We invite you to be part of the exciting service projects, amazing network, and morning breakfast meetings. If you are interested in learning more, please message us! Visit our Sunrise Rotary Facebook Page to learn more!


This morning we welcomed Sara and Karen with Iowa Mission of Mercy to speak. The Iowa Mission of Mercy is a large scale, two-day community dental clinic where dental professionals and general volunteers donate their time to provide free oral health care to individuals who face barriers to receiving dental care. A full-service field dental clinic with 100 dental operatories is set up and patients are treated on a first come, first served basis. Since the first Iowa MOM in 2008, almost 13,000 patients from all areas of the state and beyond have received free dental care totaling almost $8.5 million.
The 2017 Iowa Mission of Mercy will be held September 29-30, 2017 at the US Cellular Center in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Please join us as we celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Iowa Mission of Mercy!

The story of Sunday Drive
"While shooting photos for an assisted living facility memory unit, I was approached by a wonderful gentleman who apparently knew me for many years. Of course we had never met, and we struck up a short, friendly conversation. At one point I asked “Do you get out much?”. He replied “No, we can’t really leave the building.” I asked the facility director who explained how, for their safety and facility limitations, the folks in the memory unit were rarely allowed out. “What if they could get away without leaving the building?” I asked. From a chance encounter, the Sunday Drive project began."

Wayne Anderson shared his Sunday Drive videos with us, which are designed for people living with Alzheimer's, dementia, autism, brain injury and folks in assisted living. More about the creator of Sunday Drive at

Today, our Club welcomed our new foreign exchange student, Annie! Our Club put together a welcome package and included things that represent Iowa and Cedar Rapids. We are excited to have her join our meetings and get to know her on a deeper level. Annie is from Mexico. We also heard Nick Ford speak about Cedar Bayou Aquatic Center and Water Park that is coming to Cedar Rapids in 2019! Cedar Bayou Park is an integrated aquatic campus destined to be built and located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The park will incorporate an indoor and outdoor water park along with competitive, therapeutic, and recreational components to provide a uniquely disperse aquatic experience for all ages. You can learn more about it here: 
Sunrise Rotary members gathered at Ellis Park on Saturday, August 12th for the annual Flood the Run fundraiser benefitting Matthew 25 and The Salvation Army! This 2.7 mile water run was all the more fun with Sunrise Rotary members blasting runners with their super soakers! We even has some members run the race and go down the giant slip-n-slide at the end! 
District Governor, Ralph Smith, spoke to the Sunrise Rotary about the value Rotary brings to each member's life. Rotary is a wonderful way to impact your community and make long-lasting relationships with other Rotary members. Pictured is Governor Ralph Smith with the current Sunrise Rotary Board members. 

Amy Doerrfeld, Prevention Specialist at Area Substance Abuse Council - ASAC spoke about prevention education they provide within the community. These services are focused on increasing the knowledge and skills needed to help prevent substance use disorders and training on identifying the signs and symptoms of a substance use disorder.

Did you know you can dispose of your prescription drugs at the local area police departments?

Heartland YFC is proud to host the first ever Over The Edge event in downtown Cedar Rapids on Saturday, August 19th, where volunteers will rappel the side of the historic Iowa Building. Our very own member, John Henecke has bravely volunteered to represent Sunrise Rotary as well as join other Rotarians from CR Downtown, CR West and CR Daybreak for this event. There are two ways that we can show John the support he deserves:

Click here: and pledge money to help John achieve his goal of $1,000 by August 19th.

Attend the event on Saturday, August 19th and cheer him on as he rappels down the Iowa Building. That is the same morning of the Cedar Rapids Farmer’s Market so it will be a fun and exciting atmosphere.

The fabulous Megan, joined by her family and host sister, joined us for our Thursday morning meeting. Megan presented about her time in Vigo, Spain as a Rotary Youth Exchange Student and gave insight into the power of independence and growth that comes when your eyes are opened to new cultural experiences. As a Club, we are honored to sponsor such a thoughtful, bright, and impactful young woman!
Last week, Sunrise Rotary joined local nonprofit, Matthew 25, in their efforts to revitalize the SW side of Cedar Rapids. Sunrise Rotary took on multiple projects to build up the neighborhood including painting, siding, and re-shingling a garage roof as well as painting a porch for two area women. Within the week, Sunrise Rotary truly took ownership of the garage and porch project, and finished! Rotarian's also helped lay flooring in a home and paint a basement. Giving back is the foundation of our Club! 
Michelle Bell
Apr 02, 2020
District Governor "All Things Rotary"
Apr 09, 2020
Planning for Make A Wish Golf Outing and MUCH MORE!
May 21, 2020

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Club Executives & Directors
President Elect
Youth Protection Officer
Programs Chair
Foundation Chair
District Grant Writer
Membership Chair
Social Chair
Student Chair
Kennedy Chair
Linn-Mar Chair
Service Chair
International Chair