Visiting and prospective Rotarians are always welcome. We hope to see you there! 

Club Information

Service Above Self

We meet In Person
Tuesdays at 12:00 PM
River Club
12400 N Ville Du Parc Dr,
Mequon, WI 53092
United States of America
Home Page Stories

Executive Director – Blossom IDD

Hi everyone, my name is Samantha Bear! I was born and raised in the North Shore of Milwaukee, Fox Point area, and went to a Nicolet High School. I had the pleasure of attending Marquette University my freshman year of college, then transferring to UW-Milwaukee where I received my B.A. in Cross-Categorical education for individuals with disabilities ages 12-21+. Along with that I received a special certification for Autism Spectrum Disorders. After working in MPS, living and teaching in Israel, and moving back stateside, I started my masters with Loyola University of Chicago. While working as the lead transition teacher for Menomonee Falls High School, I completed my M.A. in International Higher Education with a sub focus of disabilities in higher education globally. For four years I worked at Bethesda College at Concordia University WI; focusing in on enhancing independent living skills and community integration for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. As of September 1, 2021, I have shifted from education to the non-profit sector working as the Executive Director of Blossom IDD and run the Cedarburg Mercantile; both of which support individuals with disabilities. Along with that, in August of 2023 I started my Doctorate in Education with a focus on Higher Education Teacher and Learning with my research topic centered around global best practices in transition for people with IDD. In my spare time I love to hang out with my buddy through the Best Buddies WI organization and do respite care for individuals in the community. I love to volunteer a ton with a local food pantry and serve on their board, work with individuals trapped in the street life due to homelessness or human trafficking, travel-as much as possible, and hang out with my cat and recently (2) adopted dogs at home in Bayview! Fun fact about me, I speak 6 languages!  

Rotarians traveled the country to be with family and friends. (Please send us your photos!)
The Guth Family in Texas
Russ and Nancy on the East Coast
With old friends
With the younger set of grandbabies
Jenne and her mom Marlene in Washington State (Totten Inlet)
Dear former and present team members.
Thanks to more of you spreading the word to your friends and clubs, we have had enough funds come in to pay for all the clinic costs- supplies, medicines, etc  and to cover our Continuing Care program through at least January,  I would estimate. 😍  Good news indeed!
*Now we need to build the Continuing Care fund to cover all of the patients that will be referred for followup care at our January clinic.
This will require donations both now and throughout the upcoming year, if we are to fulfill the promises we make to the patients we will see.
Please continue to spread the word about our mission this fall and winter and upcoming year.  
We have an amazing health care delivery system setup, with the people in Guatemala to run it. All that remains is for us to fund it.  🤩
Gratefully, Barb
More information about our GMRP Project can be found HERE.
Congratulations to Andy Nerbun and Van Mobley - recipients of the 2023 Intergovernmental Cooperation Award.
On Wednesday, November 15, the Southern Ozaukee Fire & EMS Department (SOFD) and many City and Village Officials attended Wisconsin Policy Forum’s 31st Annual Salute to Local Government that was held at the Italian Community Center in Milwaukee. SOFD was awarded the Intergovernmental Cooperation Award for the merging of the Mequon and Thiensville Fire Departments that took place on January 1, 2023. Watch the video detailing highlights of the merger here.
Congratulations Andy and Van!
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours! (Remember, no meeting at the River Club on November 21!)
Hallmark Ecards Vintage GIF by Hallmark Gold Crown
Thanks to Angelica for heading the Family Sharing Drive and dropping off the first round of checks! She delivered $2000 today and we are only half-way through the Drive! Remember, the Family Sharing Drive ends at our December 5 meeting.
Current Standings:
Team Sandy vs. Team Jenne 2023
TEAM SANDY: Apfelbach - McClean, Don
TOTAL = $1300
TEAM JENNE: McClean, Jeff - Witte-Dycus
TOTAL = $700
You may donate online by clicking HERE.
Click on the "I would like to dedicate this donation" and notate Thiensville-Mequon Rotary Club. 
The Veterans Affairs Committee volunteered at MKE Urban Stables on Saturday on behalf of the SE Wisconsin Veterans Suicide Prevention Task Force. Activities included a Grooming Station, Donkey Kissing Booth, and Veterans resource information.
Several Rotarians attended the Chris Herren Talks presentation at the Cedarburg PAC. The event was hosted by our friends at Mel's Charities and co-sponsored by Rotary District 6270, Mequon-Milwaukee Diversity Passport Club, Cedarburg-Grafton Rotary Club, and Port Washington-Saukville Rotary Club. Included in all of the great work Rotary does, our district has a Rotary Action Group for Addiction Prevention. Our District Governor, Don Griffing does great work- especially in regards to addiction and recovery.
Out-and-about at the Mequon Thiensville Community Foundation's Donor Reception
Russ and Nancy on their East Coast Adventure
Join us for an in-person volunteer opportunity on Monday, December 4. We will be decorating a holiday tree at the new Family Promise location in Pt. Washington. Please bring small donation gift cards to share. (Kwik Trip, Culver's, Piggly Wiggly, Meijer, Walmart, etc.) A little goes a long way.
We honored our first Student of the Month, Clare Pepke, on November 6th.  Clare is a senior at Homestead High School and is the daughter of Kathleen & Michael Pepke of Mequon.  Clare was recognized for her community service and leadership within her school and our local community. 
One of Clare’s most impactful projects was a silent auction that she independently organized for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), an organization that she is passionate about and sees a real need among our youth especially since COVID.  NAMI doesn’t have sufficient resources to help all of those in need, so she coordinated with local news networks, the local artist guild, and her art teachers to build support for the event.  She raised approximately $1,500 selling artwork at her event.
In addition to being passionate about artwork and supporting NAMI, Clare is also very involved in Homestead’s National Honor Society, she is the Vice President of the National Art Honors Society and is the Vice President of the Psychology Club.  She is also a recipient of the Scholastic Gold Key award for her artwork.
Clare, we are honored to recognize you as our Rotary Student of the Month.  Thank you for your “service above self” and setting such a great example among your peers!
Jenne, Maureen, and Jeremy attended the recent District 6270 Foundation Dinner in Hartford. Our Club received the End Polio Now - Countdown to History Appreciation Award. Thank you to our Club and the great work of Sam Azinger for this award! We met some wonderful friends in Rotary including Saki, a Rotary Youth Exchange student from Japan.
Several Rotarians enjoyed the Grand Re-opening of The Cheel
Rotarians attended Thiensville's Appreciation Dinner Wednesday, Nov. 1st. Rotarian Colleen Landisch-Hansen presented Van Mobley recognition for 20 years of service and Dianne Robertson recognition for 25 years of service. Congratulations on serving the community!

Rotarian at Work captured by Ellen
On Tuesday, November 7 we feature Mel Stanton of Mel's Charities. We look forward to hearing an update about the Saukville Gateway project.
After growing up in Cleveland and Green Bay, Mel settled in Ozaukee County in the mid 1980s. This journey began when he encouraged a gathering of friends to help one family in need. From that simple act of charity, Mel’s Charities has grown into an organization that has raised over $2million to impact countless lives in Ozaukee County. Mel truly has a servant’s heart, guided by a strong faith, and driven with incredible energy to find new ways to impact people in our community.
“Our story is a true testament of what can be accomplished by having fun, not taking yourself too seriously and a huge dose of God’s grace. We keep impacting more lives every year…and we’re just getting started.”
Team Sandy vs. Team Jenne 2023
Our Family Sharing Drive kicks off on Wednesday, November 1 and ends at our December 5 meeting.
TEAM SANDY: Apfelbach - McClean, Don
TEAM JENNE: McClean, Jeff - Witte-Dycus
Julie Hoover will be in attendance at our October 31 meeting to let us know what Family Sharing needs are this year. However; she has let us know that cash is still best. You can donate here:
Click on the "I would like to dedicate this donation" and notate Thiensville-Mequon Rotary Club. 
Donation History:
2020: $3149 (Team Sandy, $1395: Team Jenne, $1754)
2021: $5537 (Team Sandy, $2402: Team Jenne, $3135)
2022: $2135 (Team Sandy, $1350, Team Nick, $785)
The Bay-Lakes Council, Boy Scouts of America held a 'walk of fame' to recognize 50 people who were Scouts in their youth over the past 50 years and used their Scouting background to do all kinds of wonderful, positive things for others. Tim Vertz was named as one of the 50. Stan Smith accepted the honor on behalf of his son Brad.
Thiensville Rotarians Trick-or-treating
The Roadside Clean-up Crew - with special thanks to Angelica for the treats! 
Chad Bauman
Now in his eleventh season at Milwaukee Rep, under Chad’s guidance the theater has grown significantly from a $9M to $14M+ organization. He’s completed two capital campaigns to remodel the Stackner Cabaret, build the endowment, launch the John D. Lewis New Play Development Program, create a new A Christmas Carol and deepen the theater’s community engagement programs. He is currently stewarding the $78M campaign to build the new Associated Bank Theater Center. Previously he was the Associate Executive Director at Arena Stage in Washington, DC, where he was instrumental in opening the Mead Center for American Theater, a new 200,000 square feet performing arts complex. While at Arena, he worked on the Broadway transfers of Next to Normal (Pulitzer Prize; Tony Award), Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (Tony Award), and Wishful Drinking starring Carrie Fisher. Bauman is a graduate of Harvard Business School with a Master of Fine Arts in producing from the CalArts.
December 2023
Samantha Bear-Executive Director
Dec 05, 2023 12:00 PM
Blossom IDD
Jim Counsellor
Dec 12, 2023 12:00 PM
Military History
No Meeting
Dec 26, 2023 12:00 PM
No Meeting
Jan 02, 2024 12:00 PM
Jenne Hohn
Jan 30, 2024 12:00 PM
Business Meeting
Jenne Hohn
Feb 27, 2024 12:00 PM
Business Meeting
Jenne Hohn
Mar 26, 2024 12:00 PM
Business Meeting
Jenne Hohn
Apr 30, 2024 12:00 PM
Business Meeting
Jenne Hohn
May 21, 2024
Business Meeting
No Meeting
May 28, 2024 12:00 PM
Meeting Responsibilities
If you cannot fulfill your responsibility, please make arrangements for someone else to take your place.
November 7th
Cavitt, Lori
November 14th
Gannon, Daniel
November 28th
Hunzinger, Nicholas
November 7th
McLean, Jeffrey
November 14th
Holtz, Rob
November 28th
Borland, Megan
November 7th
Mader, Heather
November 14th
McLean, Donald
November 28th
Gannon, Daniel
Club Executives & Directors
Vice President
Past President
Executive Secretary / Director
Club Service
Community Service
International Service
Vocational Service
Public Relations
The Rotary Foundation
Director, Veteran's Affairs

Bulletin Subscribe

Subscribe to our eBulletin and stay up to date on the latest news and events.