The Wheel for November 22, 2017

by Nov 22, 2017The Wheel0 comments

The Wheel

Desiree Reed-Francois – UNLV Athletic Director

Desiree Reed-Francois has more than two decades of leadership experience as an athlete, attorney, and athletics administrator. She became the Director of Athletics at UNLV on June 1, 2017, and oversees all aspects of the athletics program; including general operations, fiscal affairs, facilities, strategic planning and external relations. She is the first Hispanic female athletics director at the FBS level. At Virginia Tech since 2014, as executive associate athletic director and later as deputy athletic director, she served as second-in-command to the athletics director and was responsible for external relations and day-to-day operations for 22 sports, more than 600 student-athletes, and 14 facilities. An administrator with an eye toward balancing the complex external and internal facets of a Power Five athletics department, Reed-Francois partnered on budget development for all athletic units at Virginia Tech, prepared the department’s facilities master plan, redesigned fundraising strategy, and revitalized the university’s student-athlete success program.

Reed-Francois earned a bachelor’s degree from UCLA, where she was a student-athlete (rowing). She received a Juris doctorate from the University Of Arizona College Of Law. She is a member of the California Bar and taught law classes at the University of Tennessee and Santa Clara. A strong advocate for student-athletes, Reed-Francois understands the importance of leadership development and mentorship in ensuring their future success and says universities should create an environment that supports opportunities to positively impact lives and develop leaders in student-athletes, coaches, and staff.

She is heavily involved in athletics administration at the national level, participating in the Division 1 Athletics Directors Leadership Institute and Fellows Program, the Women Leaders in College Sports’ Executive Institute and is a member of the College Football Playoff Committee’s operations committee.

Reed-Francois and her husband, Joshua, have a son, Jackson.

Message From The President

Dear Rotarians and visiting Kiwanians,

The changing of the leaves and the early nightfall is not only an indication of the upcoming winter but also of the annual canned food drive competition!

For more than 60 years, our two organizations have helped to solve the local hunger problem in our community by collecting non-perishable food items during the Thanksgiving season. While one of our organizations might claim “bragging rights” for a short while, we know that it is only through our collective effort that homeless men, women, and children receive hot, nutritious meals during these cold months.

Let’s use this competition to show our appreciation for the many blessings we each receive and to give thanks to our Creator. Let’s showcase to the world through this vehicle of spirited competition that we CAN live up to our ideals of “Serving the Children of the World through our individual and collective acts of “Service above Self”.

Michael Gordon
95th President
Rotary Club of Las Vegas



Member Highlights

Scribe – November 16, 2017

  • President Michael Gordon called the meeting to order.
  • Blake Myers gave the invocation. Bob Fisher led the club in the Marines Hymn, “Halls of Montezuma” and the US Navy song, “Anchors Away”, only to be completed by Ted McAdam’s Air Force song, “Off We Go”, followed by Tyler Wistisen bursting into the US Army song, “Caissons”, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance. The Sergeant at Arms was Arleen Sirois. President Michael read a letter from the North Las Vegas Rotary Club donating $250 to our Club’s 1 October victims fund
  • There were (1) International Rotarians, (1) visiting Rotarians and (5) Guests of Rotarians introduced.
  • The drawing began at $1,295 plus this week’s donations. The ticket winner was PP Sharon McNair who won $10 and the Lawry’s Bucks winner was Sarah Brown who donated her prize to the Club Holiday Party.
  • PP Kathy Dalvey announced voting for the 2018-2019 Board of Directors will be done electronically and the slate of 10 candidates was accepted and closed. Jerry Engel discussed estate planning, referring to charitable remainder trusts, adding LV Rotary Foundation as a beneficiary, and offering his time (free of charge) to discuss the options with interested members.
  • PP Jim Tucker made a special donation to the LVRF in the memory of Joe Ryan; Ted McAdam provided an update on the improvement of Ty Hilbrecht; Jackie Thornhill presented Melanie Muldowney with her Paul Harris +1 pin.
  • PP Karen Whisenhunt announced that cookies were baked and available for sale to help Pilar Blanco, Youth Exchange Student from Argentina, raise money for upcoming activities for the RYEP and Pilar thanked the Club for all of the support
  • Marie Walsh announced another successful Breakfast With Books November 14; Bracken Principal Katie Decker introduced her 1st Grade Super Team and a video of changes and impact at the schools was shown; President Michael reminded the club of the 4th Quarter Wetzel program on November 30th; Erik Astamecki announced a push for the Food Drive and, with a check awarded to the Food Drive by President Michael from the Club’s “Share What You Can” fund in the sum of $625, we have raised close to $7,300.
  • PP Jim Hunt reminded Club members to update the status of volunteers for Santa Clothes and that needy UNLV students would be joining in the project.
  • Bob Fisher updated the status of the Salvation Army Toy Drive, Dec 13-15 from 8-4 p.m. for set up, and gift giving on 12/16 from 8-5 p.m. He announced Jackie Thornhill donated a bicycle to the Toy Drive in honor of her father.
  • Tim Mullin introduced our speaker program, Chief Willie McDonald, LV Fire & Rescue, and former Rotarian. Chief McDonald provided an overview of the structure of the Fire Department, the equipment used, services provided, and the continuing coordination with other agencies, which came into play in the recent 1 October tragedy, emphasizing the continuing effort to meet and improve the quickness responding to calls and providing the appropriate ‘need’, including coordination with Lyft and use of a Registered Nurse to better evaluate calls and the corresponding need in response. The Chief also discussed the Citizen’s Fire Academy, attended by President Michael, inviting interested persons to participate in the program
  • President Michael Gordon presented our speaker with a “Share What You Can” award to benefit a veteran in need and then adjourned the meeting.

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