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Rotary Club – A Catalyst for Peace

By Joe Gschwendtner; courtesy photos

Chapter President Victor Ogunmodede (far end of the table) and Darrell Johnson (left front corner) at the February 14 meeting of Rotary Club of Castle Pines.

The Castle Pines club of Rotary International is one local nonprofit doing an extraordinary service. The Castle Pines Chamber of Commerce recognized the local chapter for the good work being done throughout the community – awarding the chapter “Nonprofit Organization of the Year” for 2021.

For those who might just recognize the 24-cog, 6-spoke wheel, that has been the symbol of the organization since 1905, the emblem represents civilization, movement and service work in action. Comprising 1.4 million members in 46,000 clubs worldwide, the men and women of Rotary are a proud fellowship of those who generally view themselves as blessed. As a result, they operate with an obligation to share that good fortune worldwide on causes encompassing peace, fighting disease, providing clean water, sanitation and hygiene, supporting education, saving the environment and promoting goodwill the world over.

The Castle Pines chapter is comprised of neighbors who tackle issues on a scale that fits their resources and whose efforts are desired and welcomed by those less fortunate. The group also brings in renowned guest speakers whenever possible to offer inspiration at chapter meetings.

Darrell Johnson is a Castle Pines community resident and an eight-year Rotarian who has twice served terms as chapter president. A drug and vaccine researcher brimming with enthusiasm for his organization, Johnson is a catalyst in Rotary youth organizations including the Interact Clubs at Rock Canyon High School and Rocky Heights Middle School.

In addition to working with the community youth through leadership programs, periodically the chapter also donates money, recently providing $5,000 to fund the Help & Hope Center in Castle Rock.

Poverty knows no limits, and the masses of people who live at the levels served are hard-pressed to bootstrap themselves, let alone finance critical infrastructure. With the problem-solving skills, resources, organization and focus Rotary brings to underserved areas and people, its members are de facto ambassadors of peace.

With only one empty seat at the conference table, one could wonder if the organization has all the volunteers it needs. Club president Victor Ogunmodede, smiled and said, “There’s always room for people with a heart for others and we would welcome anyone seeking to join this or the next generation of leaders.”

Ryan Bresnahan (left) giving the thumbs up for Rotary and Darrell Johnson (right).

To learn more about Rotary Club of Castle Pines or to volunteer with the club, call Ron West, charter member and current treasurer, at 303-588-7053.

The club’s largest fundraiser is its annual TopGolf event on May 15 (see details on page 9 of the E Guide). It’s a fun opportunity to meet new people and learn more about Rotary, all for a good cause.



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