Posted by Steve Bjornstad
Your D5495 Peacebuilder Network This Month
From Nancy Van Pelt, Rotary Club of Prescott Frontier (
One, unplanned but clear, recurring theme in the many (Virtual RI Conference) sessions I’ve attended during the last 4 weeks - whether Arizona-based, national or totally international - is ‘reimagine.’
No matter what the main topic of the breakout session, it was clear that “The Great Pause” of COVID-19 has given us a chance for reflection and quiet time to rediscover ourselves.  REIMAGINE has meant an opportunity to think about questions such as ‘What kind of person do I want to be moving forward?’‘What is Rotary’s role in this new environment?’, and ‘What is my role?’  
I know that I have spent plenty of time reflecting on these questions.  Reimagining has been a profound experience for me and - having talked with many other Rotarians during this time - I know that I’ve not been alone. Many are having similar experiences and I’m very excited for our future!
From Tony Cerato, Phoenix Rotary 100 (
On July 22, our Phoenix Rotary100’s satellite club’s Zoom meeting included Retired Police Chief Jerry Oliver, Sr. Jerry shared his personal background as an African-American growing up in predominantly white populated Phoenix during the Jim Crow era of the 1950’s.  He served more than 30 years in various law enforcement positions, including Chief of Police of three different U.S. cities.
I was inspired by Jerry’s comments regarding Rotary and the need for us to be more diverse, have more equity, and be more inclusive (DEI).  We Rotarians and our Rotary Clubs have the ideal platform to do what our Four-Way Test asks of us.  As we recite our Four-Way Test, and are truly committed to its meaning internally, we will embrace being more understanding of others, and build our Rotary membership to be more diverse and inclusive.  I am committed to the goal of Rotary and D5495 being more diverse and inclusive.  Our world will be better for it, and we as Rotarians can once again lead the way.
From Gwyn Nichols, Thunderbird Rotary Club (
Sounds True: Insights at the Edge series - Karla McLaren: Making Friends with Anxiety… and All of Your Emotions
Karla McLaren is an award-winning author, social science researcher, and empathy pioneer. Her work focuses on a “grand unified theory of emotions,” in which she moves us beyond looking at some emotions as negative and some as positive, and instead helps people see the genius that lives inside every single emotion. 
I must say, Karla has transformed my view of emotions—how specifically they help us evaluate and respond to situations.  We might assume that only happy emotions are the peaceful ones, but all emotions are essential for us as Rotarians to “Take action to create lasting change – across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves.”
As ever, feel to reach out to these D5495 Peace Builders to learn more!  Peacebuilder Network