Club Information
Welcome to our Club!

Rotary Opens Opportunities

We meet In Person
Tuesdays at 7:00 AM
Peace Lutheran Church
06321 Blue Star Memorial Highway
South Haven, MI 49090
United States of America
Speakers and Events
Rotary Resumes Meeting In-Person!
Jul 27, 2021
at Peace Lutheran Church, 7 a.m.
Rotary will not meet today
Aug 03, 2021
See August 7 announcement
Portman Preserve Visit and Potluck
Aug 07, 2021
Trail Walk and Potluck Picnic
Debi Howe, SCORE Branch Chair
Aug 10, 2021 7:00 AM
Mentoring Business Owners
Our Latest Club News

Support for Lory's Place

President Bill Roberts is pictured presenting a $5,000 grant on behalf of South Haven Rotary and Rotary District 6360 Foundation toward the creation at Lory's Place of a new Supportive Care Office where adults and children will received specialized help in overcoming the grief of losing a loved one. Bill is pictured presenting the grant to Stephanie Kohler, executive director of Lory's Place.

Rotarian of the Year

The COVID pandemic posed many challenges for everyone. For South Haven Rotary president Dan Thompson the challenge was extraordinary and for his year-long commitment to service beyond self he has been named the South Haven Rotarian of the Year.
The entire country was in a state of lockdown. Weekly in-person South Haven Rotary meetings had been declared off-limits. One traditional event after another was cancelled.
"We were in the midst of a life threatening pandemic and the future of our club as a relevant service organization had to be reinvented," noted member Mark Odland.
Thompson stepped to the plate. He kept the club meeting weekly via ZOOM technology, adapted the club's pancake breakfast to a virtual event and kept a clear focus on growth of membership. Club members maintained their generosity toward the community by contributing an estimated $56,000 to local causes.
A Rotarian since 2017, Thompson was presented the award during the club's recent annual induction event. Ironically, it was the first (and last) in-person meeting convened by him.
Thompson passed the gavel to new president Bill Roberts. Other officers for 2021-22 are Mary Sue Lyon, president-elect; Rhonda Wendzel, secretary; Michael Livovich, treasurer. Members of the board of directors include David Campbell, Deb Davidson, Kaleigh Eddy, Dene Hadden, Paul Hix, Mark Odland, Rosalie Plechaty, Bob Straits, Richard Swanson and Dan Thompson.

Community Service Honorees

PICTURED LEFT TO RIGHT: Will, Jay, Julia, Paula, Chad and Jim Marcoux.
A family who has contributed to the well-being of the South Haven community in so many ways over the years is being recognized by the Rotary Club of South Haven.
The club's 2021 Community Service Award was presented to the Marcoux family -- Jim and Paula, Jay and Julia, Chad and Will during the Rotary club annual induction and awards event on Tuesday, July 6.
The gathering at the city's Johnston Park Pavilion was the club's first in-person event in more than a year.
The award, now in its 13th year, annually recognizes residents who make a difference in the community while embodying the spirit of the Rotary slogan, Service Above Self.
"The Marcouxs are truly a family committed to our community and the people who live here," said Rotary President Dan Thompson. "
Jim has been a driving force in creating the South Haven Community Foundation. He has served as the Foundation's executive director for a dollar a year since it was incorporated in 2005. The foundation has awarded over $450,000 to local non-profits over the years.
"Jim and Paula have instilled a spirit of giving in their children," said Thompson.
Paula has worked tirelessly behind the scene making meals and desserts in her own kitchen whenever asked to assist people in need. She is active in the Blessings in a Backpack program through the South Haven schools.
Jay has a history of donating cooked and balanced meals to people in need. During the early weeks of the COVID pandemic he organized local restaurants to contribute food from their shelves to people in need.
"Jay has the business perspective of identifying need and opportunity," said Thompson. "Food that could have easily gone to waste was redirected to meet a community need."
Jay continued to provide prepared meals to both the South Haven and Covert food pantries during the pandemic, even when his business was shut down. He has also provided food to the Thursday night dinners at the Congregational Church from November to April for many years. and he serves on the board of We Care I.N.C.
Jay has often said that Julia is his inspiration. It was because of her encouragement that Jay has been involved in so much community service. For example, when Jay asked Julia if he really had time to join the We Care Board she said "you always have time to do God's work."
Chad has been described as the family's unsung hero. "It is Chad's  willingness to give more of himself to the family's business enterprises, allowing other family members to be in touch with community needs," said Thompson.
An example of the numerous community initiatives supported by the Marcouxs was a generous donation to the Project Christmas Hope when there were not enough items for older kids.

Rotary Supports Bronson

Pictured left to right: Mark Odland, South Haven Rotary immediate past president; Rotarian Paul Hix; Dan Thompson, South Haven Rotary president; Bill Roberts,
South Haven Rotary president-elect; Rotarian Dr. Richard Swanson; Heather Oestrike Schipsema of Bronson Health Foundation; Dr. Matthew Dommer,
Chief Operating Office of Bronson-South Haven Hospital; Rotary District 6360 past Governor Margie Haas; Chris Fitzgerald, Bronson -South Haven Chief Nursing Officer.
South Haven Rotarians celebrated the opening of the new $22 million Bronson South Haven Hospital on Tuesday, June 22 with a tour of the state-of-the-art facility, highlighted by the presentation of two Rotary grants, one for a new Telehealth Initiative and the other in support of a history wall featuring the story of healthcare in our community.
The history wall tells through photos the century-long story of health care in the South Haven community. Longtime physicians in the community are pictured. Included is the cornerstone and bricks from the 1941 hospital building. Two display cases will feature items representative of healthcare over the years. The project was made possible by a grant from the South Haven club and District 6360 Foundation.
Pictured are Rotarian Dr. Richard Swanson and Darcy Knapper, Manager of
Bronson Practices with some of the telehealth supplies.

The Rotary-Bronson Telehealth Initiative is an outgrowth from the limitations on personal; interactions between patients and health care providers during the COVID pandemic. It is helping people in need of care at home by providing durable medical equipment, including pulse oximeters, diabetic monitoring supplies, scales and thermometers. It is also promoting better access to care through telemedicine by providing computer tablets so residents can have virtual doctor visits and communicate electronically with their provider. Grants totaling nearly $17,000 were presents by South Haven Rotary, the Rotary District 6360 Foundation and South Haven Rotarian Paul Hix.

High School Scholars Honored

The Rotary Club of South Haven has announced the recipients of its 2021 scholarships.
"We are pleased to continue a tradition of recognizing outstanding graduating South Haven High School seniors through the presentation of scholarships in recognition of their academic achievement and for the ways in which they have applied Rotary's 'Four Way Test' in their lives," said Rotarian Dene Hadden who coordinates the scholarship program.
The honorees are Summer Corke who will study marine biology at the University of Hawaii at Hilo, Megan Morse who will major in pre-pharmacy at Grand Valley State University and Daisy Solis who will study biochemistry and molecular biology at Michigan State University. Each recipient has been presented a $1,400 scholarship.
"A major area of focus for the South Haven Rotary is education and we are proud to support the youth of our community," said President Dan Thompson.
Rotary of South Haven sponsors an annual Educational Fund Raiser that provides support for these scholarships and the South Haven Public Schools Foundation.  The club also receives matching funds from Rotary International that increases the available scholarship amounts significantly.  In addition to the individual scholarship program, Rotary of South Haven has established an endowed scholarship fund of nearly $200,000  at Lake Michigan College that provides funding for graduating seniors of South Haven High School who choose to attend LMC. 

Educator of the Year

A South Haven teacher who changed careers out of a desire to serve young people is being presented the 2021 Education and Services Award by the Rotary Club of South Haven.
The Rotarians, in collaboration with the South Haven Public Schools system and the South Haven campus of Lake Michigan College, annually recognizes a teacher or educator in the community. The Rotary club contributes $250 to the South Haven Public Schools Education Found in the name of the honoree.
Candidates for the award are nominated by administrators at their respective school.
Madelyne Bettis graduated from Florida State University with a degree in mechanical engineering. Her work as a project engineer at a Holland, Mich. company centered on the introduction of interior automotive components, but she felt a higher calling.
She decided to enter education and to pursue a Masters degree in secondary education at the University of Phoenix. From 2006-2013 she taught in the Covert school system. She became a member of the South Haven High School faculty in the 2013-14 school year.
She is the team-based teacher leader of the SHHS mathematics department and teaches all levels from pre-algebra to advanced placement calculus.
"Mrs. Bettis capitalizes on students' strengths as she provides opportunity and support for participation in her classes," said high school principal and nominator Ryan Williamson. "She provides ample time for all her students, both before and after school, to assist any student requiring additional understanding of the subject."
"Watching the growth of students at all levels is rewarding," said Bettis. "You can't control what happens when a child leaves your classroom, but you can control what happens when they are present by making it the most positive, encouraging, accepting place they know. Only then can the students be excited about learning."
She is active in the Lily of the Valley Church in Covert as a participant in praise, worship and dance, Sunday school and youth ministries. She has participated in Our Town Players productions and is a former Girl Scout leader.
She is an active member of the school improvement team and is the sophomore class sponsor at the high school. She has  been a sponsor of the Student Council, Diversity club and Robotics team.
Mrs. Bettis and her husband, William, have three children. All have been in the South Haven schools system. Lauren is a 2019 graduate and currently a college student while Sydney and William are 9th and 11th graders respectively.

Service to Community

South Haven Rotarians marked the start of Earth Week and celebrated the birthday of Rotary International founder Paul Harris on Monday, April 19 by planting a bur oak tree in historic Johnston Park.
South Haven Rotary was among the supporters of Project CURB, an initiative to beautify through landscaping the outdoor areas at the high school.  Work was recently completed at the entrance to the gymnasium-natatorium.
South Haven Rotary is among the supporters of the placement of a weather buoy on Lake Michigan approximately two miles offshore. President Dan Thompson presented our contribution for the project to Richard Chapman of the South Haven Steelheaders. Visit the buoy website

Rotary Year in Review

2020 was unlike any other year in the history of the Rotary Club of South Haven. While we have been able to meet in person for nearly a year, it hasn't stopped South Haven Rotarians from being active in the community. Here is a collection of photos highlighting the Year in Review.


Minutes and Archive
Club Executives & Directors
President Elect
Immediate Past President
Board Member
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Public Relations
Birthdays & Anniversaries
Member Birthdays:
  • Stuart Comiskey
    July 1
  • Vincent Droogan
    July 4
  • Larry Lewis
    July 11
  • Steven Larsen
    July 15
  • Michael Livovich
    July 28
  • Jerome Gruber
    August 11
  • Larry Wittkop
    Barbara Wittkop
    July 11
  • Rosalie Plechaty
    July 12
  • Thomas Rummel
    July 12
  • Tom Renner
    Carole Renner
    July 17
  • Thomas Ruesink
    August 24
  • Mark Odland
    LaRae Odland
    August 28
  • Bob Brickman
    Gail Brickman
    August 29
  • Art Bolt
    Cindy Bolt
    August 31