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2018 Rotary “Angel Tree” Project

Members and friends of the Rotary Club of Longboat Key demonstrated their generosity at their December 11th meeting when they presented a mountain of gifts for the children of migrant workers and for elderly residents of a Manatee County assisted living facility. James Linkogle from Holy Cross Catholic Church in Palmetto (who is also Projects Manager with Longboat Key’s Department of Public Works) visited the club for the 4th year in a row to collect the brightly-wrapped gifts that he and his colleagues at Holy Cross will deliver. Linkogle expressed deep gratitude for the holiday partnership with Rotary and for the many service projects that Rotarians do in the community.


James Linkogle and Rotary Club President, Susan McGuire, survey the mountain of gifts


Linkogle’s van is packed to capacity. Maybe he should bring a sleigh next year!

Gifts under the tree!


Rotarians Henriette van Eck (center) and Sherri Mills (right) share the spirit of the season, while Major Charles Whiten (far left), Sarasota Area Commander of the Salvation Army, helps load the van with gifts. Major Whiten was the guest speaker at Rotary’s meeting.

Expanding Membership

Martin Poretsky, Henriette van Eck, and Ellen Greenberger were inducted into membership in the Rotary Club of Longboat Key on December 11th. We welcome them into our community of friendship and service!

Longboat Key Rotarian’s Helping Local Charity

Working on the chain gang

Nancy Rozance offered thank you’s for the team of volunteers who will serve on the “chain gang” for highway clean-up on our adopted stretch of Gulf of Mexico Drive Saturday morning October 13th.

Great public service work.

Rotary’s CART Fund initiative

Jack Rozance gave us some history about Rotary’s CART Fund initiative (coins for Alzheimer’s Research Trust) that has raised close to $8 million for Alzheimer’s research since the Fund was started by a Rotary Club in South Carolina back in 1996. More than 45 research grants have been awarded to start-up labs with new and innovative approaches to the issue. At tonight’s meeting and at our October 16th meeting, bright blue CART buckets will be on our tables at Rotary so that we can contribute pocket change (and folding money) for this great cause. Susan McGuire and the Rozances’ promise to match the funds raised through our members’ donations.

October 2 Program: Elder Law Awareness

Our Speaker: Sierra Butler, Elder Law Attorney

Sierra Butler, Esq., founder of Butler Elder Law, P.A. and a member of Ferrari, Butler & Moneymaker, PLLC, enlightened our members about a broad range of lifetime and death time planning issues and common mistakes that she sees many people making. “l love educating people,” she remarked, adding, “Knowledge is power!” A practicing attorney for over 13 years, Butler is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys. The members of her firm, with offices in Bradenton, Sarasota, St. Petersburg, and Venice, serve as attorneys and counselors for ALI generations; “Elder law is not just for the elderly,” she explained.

Butler spends approximately one-third of her time in the courtroom, often cleaning up complex problems that could have been avoided with appropriate planning while the individual in question was alive and competent. She is emphatic that timely steps should be taken by individuals and their families to avoid the expense and emotional pain of guardianship proceedings. Powers of Attorney for property matters, health care directives for medical decisions, and “pre-need guardian designations” must be executed while one is still of sound mind. She strongly recommends that those who may have executed such documents in other states should re-execute Florida-approved documents when they settle here.

Much of Butler’s work involves protecting her clients’ assets from the claims of creditors, preserving their eligibility for Medicaid benefits, and counseling them on taking advantage of the important homestead protections afforded by Florida law. She led the Rotary Club in a thought-provoking discussion based upon her list of ten “asset protection misconceptions,” misconceptions that commonly lead to costly mistakes in lifetime and death time planning. Butler cautions people to stay away from “do-it-yourself” internet legal documents that they may not truly understand, strongly recommending that they utilize the services of experienced and qualified local legal professionals. “It takes a team,” she concluded. She can be reached at sierra@butlerelderlaw.com or telephone 941-254-6611; her website is www.butlerelderlaw.com.

LBK Rotary visits The Academy at Glengary

Click to learn more about The Academy at Glengary.  This organization provides adults living with mental health challenges the opportunity to embark on a journey to wellness. The LBK Rotary recently had the opportunity to visit and tour their facility.  We wanted to share photos from our visit.

Tuttle Elementary food pantry continues!

LBK Rotary staffs continued partnership with All Faith’s Food Ban


LBK Rotarian Carol Erker organizes the shelves at the 9/20 Tuttle Elementary food pantry.


Manning the watermelon table at Tuttle Elementary’s food pantry

Fellow Rotary Club Highlight; One Book Initiative

From my club visits and recent emails, I’ve shared with you some of Area 8’s community service projects your clubs have chosen to further highlight throughout the Rotary year. For our first further highlighted Area service project we are featuring the One Book Initiative.
The One Book Initiative, financially supported by all Area clubs, is a Sarasota County School (SCS) countywide special effort to help all first graders and fourth graders achieve and exceed in Grade-Level Reading. Led by the Rotary Club of Sarasota, your support has enabled us to give all SCS first graders the book, The Magic Fish, and all SCS fourth graders the book, Wonder! A wonderful tool/gift for the students, teachers, and families as they learn together the traits of compassion, appreciation, respect, and much more from these stories!
As shown above, all 5800+ books have been prepped, packed, and are on their way to all 27 schools.
Help spread the word that your Area Rotary clubs are doing great work in your community and beyond. Next up, in a couple of weeks, we will further highlight a great initiative by the Sarasota Bay Club for some Riverview High IB kids who needed to help…beyond the books!

Make it a great Rotary year! Ben

Bennitt(Ben) Bates,MBA
Broker-Associate Coldwell Banker
2018-19 Assistant/Area Gov
2016-17 RCS Past President

Rotary Clubs in Southwest Florida, awards its first-ever Community Service Grant

Rotary District 6960, the umbrella organization comprised of 51 Rotary Clubs in Southwest Florida, awarded its first-ever Community Service Grant this spring when it contributed $40,000 to All Faiths Food Bank for the purchase of a new refrigerated truck to be used to pick up and deliver fresh and frozen foods to nutritionally challenged neighbors in need throughout Desoto and Sarasota Counties. The District’s Grant kick-started an initiative which was joined by the Rotary Clubs of Longboat Key, Sarasota, Sarasota Bay, Sarasota Sunrise, and Sarasota Southside, each of whom donated at least $2500 to assist the Food Bank in completing the truck purchase. Representatives of the District and the local Rotary Clubs were on hand at All Faiths Food Bank’s headquarters on August 9th for the official ribbon cutting and dedication of the truck.

`The District and the participating local clubs are honored with a thank you on the back of the new truck.


District Governor Bobbie Bird assists Sarasota Rotarian, Jim Henry, with the official ribbon cutting.


Longboat Key Rotarian, Carol Erker, admires the new truck.


The New Truck