January 2014 Students of the Month: Zack Eichten, Jake Koestler and Andrew Smeed


The Rotary Club of Rosemount is pleased to announce that it has not one, but three students of the month for January 2014: Zach Eichten, Jake Koestler and Andrew Smeed.


Choosing to recognize three seniors in the same month was a first for the Rosemount Rotary Club, but it came with good reason. The three friends founded the Rosemount High School Community Peer Network, a tutoring organization available to Rosemount High School students free of charge.


The idea for the Community Peer Network was conceived late one night in Andrew’s basement and soon became reality. For nearly a year, the group has offered students an opportunity to improve their academic position and learn from one anther.


Because of their success together in making Rosemount High School a little bit better with the Community Peer Network, the Rotary Club of Rosemount chose to celebrate their achievements together as well.


Zack Eichten


Zack Eichten and his family are also Rosemount natives and like his friend Andrew, Zack also boasts a 3.9 GPA, “A” Honor status, a spot in the top ten percent of his class and designation as an AP scholar.


Zack not only works with the Community Peer Network at school, but also is captain of the Mock Trial team; squad captain for trapshooting; a member of National Honor Society, Tri-M, Student Ambassadors and Student Council; a leader in Fellowship of Christian Athletes; member of the Concert Choir; and a nominee to the Homecoming Court.


In addition to his extra-curriculars, Zack is employed by the City of Rosemount, working in the warming houses and as a youth coordinator. He is also chair of the Youth Commission, an active member of his church, a big fan of Doctor Who and an avid sportsman.


Zack currently plans to major in political science or pre-law at St. John’s or Concordia Moorhead.


Jake Koestler


Jake Koestler is an “A” Honor Roll student and AP Scholar with honors who has a 3.9 GPA and is taking five AP and two college courses this year.


Over and above being an outstanding academic performer, Jake is an exceptional athlete and leader who served as captain of this year’s RHS football team that made an appearance in the state championship game, as well as captain of and state champion in Olympic weightlifting. He also serves as treasurer of the National Honor Society, president of the National Honor Society Beta committee, and member of the National Spanish Honor Society and is a frequent attendee at leadership conferences.


In his free time, Jake can be found spending time with his family, friends and dog, Retta, as well as supporting the Rosemount Irish sports teams. He also enjoys watching Jeopardy! and Top Gear and going to the Boundary Waters.


After completing his time at Rosemount High School, Jake hopes to study biomedical or chemical engineering at the University of Minnesota, Marquette, Iowa State University or the University of Wisconsin Madison.


Andrew Smeed


Andrew Smeed is a life-long Rosemount resident with a stellar academic record that includes a 3.9 GPA, “A” Honor Roll status, a spot in the top ten percent of his class and designation as an AP scholar with honors.


In addition to helping found and tutor in the Community Peer Network, Andrew’s school activities include being captain of the soccer team, an active member of the National Honor Society and performer in OnStage and the upcoming dance show.


Outside of school, Andrew volunteers regularly at his church, completing community service projects that include an upcoming mission trip to South Carolina. He is also a cashier at Raisin’ Canes in Apple Valley who enjoys pond hockey, practicing soccer, spending time with friends and family and watching movies in his free time.


Following graduation, Andrew intends to major in actuarial science at a college yet to be determined.




The Rotary Club of Rosemount congratulates Andrew, Zack and Jake on the successes they have had so far and wishes them well on their future endeavors.





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February 2014 Member Spotlight: Erin Edlund



Name: Erin Edlund

Employer: Dakota County Technical College and Inver Hills Community College

Job Title: Director of Institutional Advancement and Director of Marketing & Public Relations

Education: Drake University, B.A. (Advertising); University of St. Thomas, Master of Business Communication


For Rosemount Rotarian Erin Edlund, marketing, public relations and fundraising take center stage in both her professional life and Rotary.


Erin has spent the last ten years working at Dakota County Technical College (DCTC) where she currently oversees all external relations and fundraising efforts, and recently began splitting her time at DCTC, serving also as the director of marketing and public relations at Inver Hills Community College. She is passionate about technical education and loves the work that she does, which is perhaps why she has taken on the same tasks as a member of Rosemount Rotary. She is the chair for fundraising and public relations, as well as pitch hitting on other committees as needed.


Erin joined Rotary because well, who wouldn’t want to be around such great people? The experience has been furthered because of the work being done by the group – Erin particularly likes being a STRIVE mentor, volunteering with other clubs and doing various cleanup projects.


Outside of Rotary, Erin is involved with numerous professional organizations, participates in a local running group, attends CROSSROADS of Lakeville and spends as much quality time as possible with her rock star husband, Jeff, her daughter, Evelyn and their ridiculously ill-behaved yellow lab, Lucy. She has also been preparing for the arrival of their second child, a yet-to-be-named son, in March.


Originally hailing from Iowa, Erin considers the rustling of corn on a hot night in July to be one of the best things on Earth and has a deep love affair with the outdoors. She also hopes to one day make the jump from half marathons to full marathons, give up drinking diet pop, make more time for art and writing, own a hobby farm and help stop the rampant overuse of pronouns.

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December 2013 Student of the Month: Christine Crosfield

The Rotary Club of Rosemount is pleased to announce that Rosemount High School senior Christine Crosfield is its December 2013 Student of the Month.

Christine has excelled academically during high school and has been an academic letter winner each year. She is a Science Olympiad Captain and a regular participant on the mock trial team. She has been awarded the AP Scholar title for passing all of the AP tests she has taken.  By the end of high school, Christine will have completed seven AP tests.

Christine has also demonstrated her ability to lead outside the classroom.  She is the President of her National Honor Society committee, where she helps lead committee meetings focused on service project opportunities for the group. Through NHS, she participated in a fall food drive that gathered approximately 300 pounds of food for the Rosemount Food Shelf.

Christine also serves as an Officer of GOAT (Group of Active Teens), a volunteer group that facilitates student service in the community. As a participant in GOAT, Christine makes seasonal cards and plays bingo at Trinity Health Center, an assisted living facility.  She also volunteers at Feed My Starving Children and helps with Carnivale, an event that provides childcare so that parents of special needs children can spend an evening out together.

As Vice President of the National Spanish Honor Society, she recently volunteered at the Adams Spanish Immersion School in St. Paul by educating kindergarten students about the Spanish language and culture. As an RHS student ambassador, she assisted with freshmen orientation and helps new students acclimate to the school. She also tutors students during her study hall period.

In her spare time, Christine enjoys biking and skiing. She enjoys watching movies, but she always seems to find time for puzzles. Sudoku is her favorite.

After high school, Christine plans to attend college, where she intends to obtain a bachelor’s degree in engineering and a master’s degree in biomedical engineering.

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January 2014 Member Spotlight: David Block


Name: David Block

Employer: Currently Retired, Formerly of the St. Paul Companies

Job Title: Former Vice President

Education: Augsburg, B.A.; University of Minnesota Twin Cities, M.A.


Any strong organization needs an oracle. David Block is the Rosemount Rotary’s.


David’s storied career and previous involvement with the Amtrak Customer Advisory Council, the St. Paul Union Depot Locate Task Force, the St. Paul Building Owners and Managers Association, the St. Paul Traffic Management Organization, the Landmark Center, the St. Paul Convention and Visitors Bureau and the St. Paul Downtown Council make him a wealth of knowledge as a charter member, past treasurer and STRIVE mentor in Rosemount Rotary.


David got involved with helping build Rosemount Rotary because of his desire to be of service to others. In keeping with that desire, David has found his service as a mentor to Rosemount High School students to be one of the things he enjoys most about Rotary, though he relishes the opportunity to connect with his fellow Rotarians and community leaders at the weekly Rotary meetings as well. David also serves the club as an important sounding board for the development and growth of the club, sharing from his experiences and knowledge to benefit Rosemount Rotary.


David lives with his wife, Judy, in Apple Valley. He has one son, Andy. He is a wine connoisseur, a collector of railroad books and an avid Gopher basketball and football fan.

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Rosemount Rotary Gearing Up for 2014 Soiree



The Rotary Club of Rosemount is pleased to announce it will host its annual Irish for a Day Soiree fundraising event on Saturday, March 15, 2014, at the Rosemount Community Center.

The event is a fun and casual affair that serves as the club’s sole fundraising event. Dollars raised support a variety of the club’s service projects, including a fund the Rotary Club of Rosemount recently established to provide financial support for children at the Rosemount Family Resource Center to attend various camps, workshops, field trips and other educational and leadership activities during the summer months.

On the agenda for the evening is entertainment from Legacy, a local Celtic band, Irish dancers, a raffle, silent auction, cash bar and a fabulous traditional Irish meal catered by Rosemount’s Las Tortillas Restaurant, which anyone who has attended the event before will tell you is the hit of the evening.

Individuals interested in purchasing tickets for the event should contact any Rosemount Rotarian, call Erin at 952-261-6133 or email rosemountrotary@gmail.com. Tickets are $50 per person or $350 for a table of eight.

The club is also seeking silent auction items and sponsors for the event. If you are interested in supporting the club, please email rosemountrotary@gmail.com or contact any Rosemount Rotarian for more details.


Click here if you are interested in donating to or sponsoring the Irish for a Day Soiree.

Click here for the electronic event invitation.

Click here for details and more information on the Irish for a Day Soiree.


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November 2013 Student of the Month: Sarah Bruber

The Rotary Club of Rosemount is pleased to announce that Rosemount High School senior Sarah Bruber is its November 2013 Student of the Month.

Sarah excels both in and out of the classroom.  She is an academic letter winner and takes advanced placement classes, which will give her college credit after high school. She also participates in DECA, a business club that allows students to compete locally and nationally in a business, marketing, finance and hospitality competition with other business-focused students.

As a member of the Student Ambassador Club, Sarah finds ways to share her knowledge of Rosemount High School with younger students and transfer students. She is also a member of Student Council and played a key organizational role during the homecoming festivities this year.

One group that is very close to Sarah’s heart is Students Against Cancer.  As part of this group, she participates in fundraising activities with the goal of raising money for the American Cancer Society.  Because of her support for this cause, Sarah felt a personal call to help when she discovered that her middle school teacher (Ms. Briscoe) had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Sarah organized a “purple out,” designing and selling purple t-shirts to be worn at a Rosemount High School football game. Based on this successful fundraising effort, Sarah was able to present a $5,000 check to Ms. Briscoe at the game.

Sarah also volunteers for the Angel Foundation and Feed My Starving Children.  Each Christmas, she participates in bell-ringing for the Salvation Army.

After high school, Sarah plans to attend a Minnesota college and to focus her studies on business management or marketing.

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Rotary Club of Rosemount Proud to Support RHS at Tournament of Roses Parade



The Rotary Club of Rosemount has presented the Rosemount High School Marching Band with a check for $500 to support its trip to the 2014 Tournament of Roses Parade.

“Our club was so proud to learn of the invitation the Rosemount High School marching band received to perform at the Tournament of Roses Parade,” said Rotary Club of Rosemount President Laura Briggs at the check presentation. “This is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity, and we want to support the students, parents and staff who have worked so hard to make it possible.”

The Rosemount High School Marching Band will march in the 2014 Tournament of Roses Parade on January 1, 2014 in Pasadena, Calif. This past July, Tournament of Roses President and Rotarian R. Scott Jenkins was in attendance at a community pep rally at the Rosemount High School Performing Arts Center on July 12 to deliver a formal invitation to the band on July 13, and also attended a Rotary Club of Rosemount meeting to talk about the Tournament of Roses Parade.

The Rotary Club of Rosemount wishes the band well as it continues its fundraising efforts in preparation for this amazing opportunity!

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December 2013 Member Spotlight: Joelle Chouliaris


Name: Joelle Chouliaris
Employer: T.O.P.S. Pizza and Hoagies
Job Title: General Manager
Education: University of Minnesota Twin Cities (English with a minor in Mass Communications)


Author of a blog called “the shortcakery” ( found at http://www.shortcakery.blogspot.com), Joelle Chouliaris describes herself as “a hapa girl who grew up in Hawaii, married a Greek guy, and ended up in Minnesota.”


Joelle decided to join Rosemount Rotary in early 2013 as a way to connect with other local business leaders, cultivate new friendships and give back to the community in a meaningful way. As a new member, she is looking forward to her future with Rosemount Rotary, noting that she received a scholarship from the Rotary Club of Hilo Bay in high school and hopes to pay that gift forward as a Rotarian.


In addition to serving the community through Rotary, Joelle is a member of St. Mar’s Greek Orthodox Church and coordinates a Toys for Tots toy drive during the holidays through her business.


Joelle lives in Farmington with her husband, Steve, and enjoys spending time with her nephew and niece.

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October 2013 Student of the Month: Emily Severson

The Rotary Club of Rosemount is pleased to announce that Rosemount High School senior Emily Severson is its October 2013 Student of the Month.

Emily lives in Rosemount with her parents Jill and Greg. Her brother Noah attends Gustavus Adolphus College and her sisters Megan and Rachel attend Rosemount High School.

As a Rosemount High School student, Emily has excelled in academics. She is ranked near the top of her class and has taken many AP, CIS and honors courses. She has been named an AP Scholar with Honor by the College Board, and she is a member of the National Honor Society.

Emily has maintained a high level of academic achievement even while demonstrating success and leadership outside the classroom. Emily is Vice President of Student Council and is actively involved in planning events for the group. She is a member of choir, a member of the track team and captain of the cross country team.

Outside of school, Emily serves as a tutor for Community Peer Network, a program designed to help students improve performance in the classroom. She also volunteers at Rosemount Methodist Church by providing childcare so that parents with special needs children can enjoy an evening out together.

Emily is also actively involved in her church.  Last year, she traveled to Guatemala where her team facilitated a Vacation Bible School for Guatemalan children.  Emily’s faith plays a central role in her life, and she attends a Bible study each Wednesday before school with many of her peers.

After graduation, Emily plans to attend college in Minnesota, majoring in Sociology or Anthropology.

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November 2013 Member Spotlight: Ryan O’Gara

Name: Ryan O’Gara

Employer: SKB Environmental

Job Title:  Divisional Government Affairs Manager

Education: University of Colorado, Boulder, B.A.


While Ryan O’Gara is relatively new to Rosemount Rotary, he is certainly not new to being an engaged citizen through his work as divisional government affairs manager at SKB Environmental and his involvement in the Dakota Regional Chamber.


Ryan joined the club to be able to participate in service projects and expand his engagement with the community. Time will tell what service projects he likes most and what memories he will build in the club, but Ryan certainly expresses his enthusiasm for finding those answers.


Ryan is husband to Luisa, who is from Italy, and father to Isabella and Peter. When he isn’t busy creating connections in the community and advocating for his employer, he enjoys playing guitar, dabbling in other musical endeavors and being a die-hard fan of UFC fighting.

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