Speaker Date Topic
Casey Cooper May 06, 2021
Mississippi River Trip - Lake Itasca to the Gulf of Mexico
Mississippi River Trip - Lake Itasca to the Gulf of Mexico

Casey Cooper is the brother of club member Callie Smith.  Casey will share his story of floating the entire Mississippi!

In the summer of 2018, after I graduated college and before I started my career as a funeral director, I paddled the entire Mississippi River. Growing up near the marsh and on the river in La Crosse, this had always been a dream of mine. While attending the University of Minnesota's Mortuary Science Program I became actively involved in an organization called Children's Grief Connection. Children's Grief Connection's main focus is a weekend camp held twice a year called Hearts of Hope Camp. This grief camp is for family members and friends who have lost a loved one. Initially created for children who lost a parent, this camp connects kids who are going through similar circumstances. We teach them how to acknowledge their grief and teach them different coping mechanisms to try and lessen its negative side effects. Over the years Hearts of Hope has grown into a full family camp. People of any age or suffering through any kind of grief are welcome. Camp is free for all campers. I decided to make my trip a fundraiser for Children's Grief Connection. I started my trip in Lake Itasca on June 18th and I reached the Gulf of Mexico 69 days later on August 25th

Matt Bratner May 20, 2021

Conservation. Education. Community.

The WisCorps mission is to develop leadership, self-confidence, and a strong work ethic in youth and young adults through the active stewardship of Wisconsin’s communities and natural resources. WisCorps, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) conservation corps headquartered in La Crosse, Wisconsin that engages youth and young adults in two areas: conservation projects and nature education.

Matthew Brantner is the Executive Director of WisCorps and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.  He got his start in conservation corps programs as a Crew Leader and eventual Program Manager for the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps in 2005. In 2009, after four years with the corps in Vermont, he worked with a small group of dedicated individuals to bring a conservation corps back to Wisconsin by founding WisCorps.

In addition to loving his role at WisCorps, Matthew is an avid outdoorsperson who loves camping, hiking, fishing, kayaking, and cycling.  He enjoys spending time with his wife and three daughters on their small farm where they garden and care for the land.

Dave Trapp May 27, 2021
The Drug Explosion and Community Risk Report

More details on this program will be coming!

Andy Bakkum Jun 03, 2021
Riverside Park Fellowship!
Riverside Park Fellowship!

Details on the program are yet to be finalized, but we're hoping we can all get together at Riverside Park for some "outside" pandemic friendly fellowship!

Andy Bakkum and Dean Dickinson Jun 10, 2021
Paul Harris Fellow Presentations
Paul Harris Fellow Presentations

The Paul Harris Fellow recognition acknowledges individuals who contribute, or who have contributions made in their name, of $1,000 to The Rotary Foundation.

Rotary established the recognition in 1957 to encourage and show appreciation for substantial contributions to what was then the Foundation’s only program, Rotary Foundation Fellowships for Advanced Study, the precursor to Ambassadorial Scholarships. 

Dr. Roger Haro Jun 24, 2021
The Freshwater Collaborative of Wisconsin: UWL and Our Great River
The Freshwater Collaborative of Wisconsin:  UWL and Our Great River

The Freshwater Collaborative of Wisconsin (FCW) is a partnership of Wisconsin's 13 public universities, connecting with industry partners, local communities, policymakers and advocacy groups. The mission is to train the next generation of water professionals, and to establish Wisconsin as a global leader in water-related science, technology and economic growth. Water is the fastest growing sector of the world’s economy. Director Roger Haro of UWL’s River Studies Center will outline why our institution, the only UW-System campus next to the Mississippi River, is uniquely poised to be a leader in the FCW.

Dr. Haro is Associate Dean for the College of Science and Health. He received his Ph.D. in Natural Resources and Environment from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.  His disciplinary research specializes in the study of freshwater ecosystems, the biology of freshwater invertebrates and fish, and landscape ecology. His primary research examines the behavioral ecology of freshwater invertebrates. He is also interested in how landscape change affects the connectivity of freshwater ecosystems and the biological consequences of non-point source pollution, including mercury. He directs UWL’s River Studies Center, the First Year Research Exposure (F.Y.R.E.) program and the McNair Scholars Program. He has over 28 years of experience working with and developing programs for under-represented students in the STEM fields.