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Welcome to The Dover Rotary

The Rotary Club of Dover, NH, offers opportunities for our members — and those interested in making a difference — to get involved. Through meetings, social events, and volunteer projects, our members learn about the issues facing our community and communities all over the world, partnering with local, national, and global experts to exchange ideas about potential solutions and to draw up action plans to respond. Along with these opportunities to serve, members also are able to regularly network, resulting in lifelong friendships and business connections.

Our club is a proud part of this community and of Rotary International. Rotary is a global network of more than 1.2 million members who believe that great things happen when dedicated minds come together. We are community and business leaders representing different professions, experiences, and perspectives but with a shared desire to connect with others to address the challenges affecting our community and communities around the world.

 
Home Page Stories

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

Twenty years!

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

I used to love the "Unwanted Christmas Gift auction" that John Cogan used to do. He would always pick on Malcolm, especially if Malcolm wasn't in attendance! I also enjoy the Annual Golf Tournament.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up:

I currently line in Downtown Dover.

I was born in Cleveland, Ohio. My father was originally from New Jersey but was working on his PHD in Clinical Psychology at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. When I was in 4th grade, we spent a year in England while my dad taught a visiting year at the University of Leeds. It was fascinating to go to an English school and study about Guy Fawkes, Kings and Queens, and learn how to spell words the English way.

The most important thing that happened while we lived in England was that my homeroom teacher happened to be the choir director. She asked me to play piano for a piece that the choir was singing and that started my lifelong career as an accompanist!

After England, my father was offered a job at UNH and we settled in Durham where I stayed through high school graduation and then college. Since then I have lived in Boston, York, Dover, back to Durham, Rochester, and finally back to Dover where we plan to stay!

4. My Hobbies:

I love to read, swim, crochet, walk the dog, go to theater in Boston and NYC with my husband of 34 years, and watch movies.

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment:

I am primarily a piano teacher and professional pianist for church, choirs and musical theater.

Since Covid interupted all choir work, live performing, and musical theater, I have shifted to teaching on Zoom and expanded my church job to become the Parish Administrator. It's a 15 hour per week job and was mostly remote until September.

 

Now I enjoy going into the church office, putting on some music, lighting a candle and working. It's a nice contrast to teaching and directing. From 1977-1988, I played in two different top 40 rock bands. The 2nd one, Crossfire, took me all over New England and a little to Canada and helped me break out of my classical roots and be "cool", at least for a little while! I met my husband while in the band and he became my road manager for 3 years.

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

In the summer I live on an island on Lake George that was bought at an auction in 1950 by my grandfather and his 8 siblings. The family had come to America through Ellis Island from Lithuania in the early 20th century. Buying the island was a way to keep the family together in the summers year after year. We were supposed to have a 70th anniversary celebration in July but had to cancel due to Covid. There are 6 cottages and 2 covered bridges with bedrooms on the upper level. Everyone on the island is related either by blood, or marriage!

7. Final words:

There are a lot of good charities in the world that do many good things. Rotary is the one that I choose to give my time, talent and treasure to. I trust the organization to be a good caretaker to my efforts and it makes the choice simple.

As part of the “Million Mask Challenge”, the Rotary Club of Dover NH distributed and delivered 3,000 masks to the Dover School Superintendent of Schools, Community Action Partnership of Strafford County, Community Partners NH, SOS Recovery Community Organization, Triangle Club, The Doorway, and Wentworth Home so that they can share with their employees and clients as they come through their doors in order to be safe.

There is plenty of work to be done to help others in our Dover Community and Rotary makes it easy!

 

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

I have been a Rotarian for 11 years. I joined Rotary in Utica NY at the urging of my financial advisor, Catherine McEnroe, who is still a member of that club.

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

It was in Utica that I developed a passion for reading to first and second graders once a week in a program that was developed long before I came on the scene. At one time 60 Utica Rotarians participated, but by the time I got involved it was less than a dozen and finally was terminated. We would have continued it forever, but due to a state wide change in education policy, all “extraneous” enrichment offered by non-school personnel was severely cut back or terminated just as I was leaving Utica to head to the NH Seacoast in 2013.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up:

I live in Dover after 17 years of living in Utica and 17 years before that in Salem MA where I met my late wife, Mary. I was born in Ithaca NY and stayed there for all of 6 months, not too many memories of life high above Cayuga’s waters, I’m afraid. After that my life was a whirlwind of changing residences, Oak Park Illinois, the Bronx, Johnson, Cranston, and Providence, Rhode Island all before I was 7. I did end up in Providence from the 4th grade through graduating from Brown University with a degree in Anthropology. Next it was 5 years in Rochester NY as an anthropology grad student and a staff announcer for WBBF-FM a commercial classical radio station. When it went under on Valentine’s day 1976 with me as the last on air announcer [I played Haydn’s “Farewell” Symphony], the local public radio station WXXI picked us up.

4. My Hobbies:

My hobbies include the two “s”s, singing and sailing. As a tenor I never have a problem finding a spot in a community chorus or small ensemble. During the pandemic I have been exploring the wonders of virtual performance! Until I came to Seacoast NH I’ve always had some sort of a sailboat. Not sure if I’ll venture down that path again, but I’m severely tempted every other week. Pre-pandemically I indulged in my passion by volunteering as crew on the gundalow “Piscataqua” handling lines four times the diameter of what I had been used to on my 21 foot sloop. When I was in my 50s and academic jobs were drying up yet another time, I retooled as a Museum Director thanks to a magnificent program at Framingham State. The thrill of my life was becoming Museum Director/Manager for the Shako:wi Cultural Center of the Oneida Nation of New York. At last I had found a niche that matched my skills and talents and was of use to the public!

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment:

I’ve been retired since 2009 and a widower since early 2015 so have had time to devote to one of my first loves – writing. I have been writing poetry since my teen-aged years, but have been more disciplined about it in the past five years writing at least one poem a day. My “The Mary Poems” appeared in 2016 and I have some of my individual poems published in print an online.

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

Something my fellow Rotarians might not know about me is that when I was a pre-adolescent I was a student at Christopher Wren School in London England. As the sole Yank, I was encouraged to provide entertainment to my mates at Christmas, so I played a mock guitar and sang “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer” to the whole school at the Christmas Pageant, successfully to my surprise. More to the point, the education I got in the short time I was in First Form [=7 th grade here] was so intensive I didn’t have to crack a book to get an A in almost any subject after I got back to the States until the 10 th grade although I had been only a fair to middling student in “Merry Olde” [as we jokingly called England]

7. Final words:

My final thought is that the fellowship, sincerity of purpose, and follow through on community service projects that Rotary provides has been a source of comfort to and purpose for me ever since I joined back in Utica in October of 2009. I still can’t think of a better way to stay in touch with the pulse of our community here in Dover and to be afforded the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of all of our citizens. It is an honor to be part of a pragmatic outfit that lives up to its ideals.

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

20 years

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

Shortly after I joined Rotary, I found out that I was expecting my first child. I loved sitting with Doc Wilson who gave me tons of advice for my new baby. Ozzy was one of my first visitors in the hospital (he volunteered at WDH and made me promise to call the volunteer office to let him know). Gary D. shared some very special parental advice with me that I cherish. They were all there for this very special part of my life.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up:

I live in Dover but grew up in Concord, NH. I like to say that Dover is just like Concord but with better access to the ocean. I love being part of the Dover community.

4. My Hobbies:

I love to ski, sit on the beach, walk my dogs, take photos, and travel. I won’t say I am a runner but I do enjoy the Dover Race series, have plans for Reach the Beach in 2021 and I get killer splat points at Orange Theory. Pre-covid, I spent a lot of time cheering on my kids from the sidelines, working concession stands or driving to every sport field or band show in New England.

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment:

I am the CEO of Community Action Partnership of Strafford County and celebrated my 10th anniversary this September. I can honestly say that I look forward to going to work each day with an incredible team.

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

I went to Space Camp. After the Challenger, a school in Scottsdale, AZ raised money to send two students from Concord to Space Camp. I was chosen to attend with another student from Concord. I was in 7th grade. It was my first plane ride and we went without parents! It was an incredible experience to be one of 400 kids with only 13 females at camp. The work of STEM is so incredibly important for rising middle school students, especially girls, in our schools.

7. Final words:

There are incredible opportunities to be engaged with Rotary and flexibility depending on where you are in your life. I appreciate the support from my fellow Rotarians over the years and connections I have made. I look forward to another 20 years.

This week I have the opportunity to interview and learn about our Rotarian, Ken Plante.

Sit back, relax and let’s learn about Ken.

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

Ten years or so.

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

Hands on projects. They are a great opportunity to get to know other members. See you at the shredding event on Saturday.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up:

I grew up in Somersworth and moved to Dover with my parents in 1980. Elaine and I live on Back Road in Dover.

4. My Hobbies:

Cycling, golf, skiing, cooking. I also enjoy working in the yard when I have time.

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment:

I own and operate Tri-City Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram and Tri-City Subaru.

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

You probably didn’t know that I’m a Dead Head. I spent many days and nights of my misguided youth seeing the band in concert. Fortunately they have their own channel on Sirius radio so I can still catch a show.

7. Final words:

You probably didn’t know that I’m a Dead Head. I spent many days and nights of my misguided youth seeing the band in concert. Fortunately they have their own channel on Sirius radio so I can still catch a show.

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

I have been in the Dover Rotary Club for 38 years and served as President from 1996 to 1997. For the last three years I have also been the Assistant District Gover-nor with primary District responsibility for the Dover, Rochester, So. Berwick, and Durham Great Bay Rotary Clubs.

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

There have been so many in 38 years but four occasions stand out. I remember the construction and dedication of the Rotary Garden at Henry Law Park during my term as President. This was one of the first large projects we did af-ter becoming successful with our bingo fundraiser. The Garden seemed to set the stage (yes, pun intended) for other large projects like the Rotary Arts Pavilion, the flag pavilion and Kerry Forbes Memorial, Park Street Park and countless other pro-jects and donations large and small most with excellent LINKAGE to the efforts of our Rotary club.

I remember the Rotary Drill Team led by our wonderful deceased member Rev. Dave Slater. There were about 15 of us in business suits and briefcases marching in the Christmas Parade doing intricate (??) marching maneuvers and exchanging briefcases. The crowd loved it. I also am thankful for the opportunity to give the keynote address at both the 90th and 95th Anniversary celebrations of the club. It required me to review the club’s amazing history of Service above Self and made me proud of the impact the club has made for what is now approaching 100 years. Few organizations can claim such a record of service.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up.

My wife Vi and I have lived in Durham for 47 years. I consider myself a resident of Durham and a citizen of Dover. Vi and I have been married for 51 years and have two wonderful children and two grandchildren.

I grew up in Peabody, Mass. and attended the public schools. My family was a typi-cal Ozzie and Harriet middle class family with my father being a business executive and my mother was a stay-at-home mom. After Peabody High, I attended Tufts University and the best thing that happened to me at Tufts was I met my future wife, Vi, who was also a Tufts student one year behind me. We were married in 1969. Tufts was extremely difficult for me and in my Freshman year I went to the admis-sion office to ask if I was an experimental admission ! As time went by, Tufts really prepared me well for Law School at Boston University. I graduated from BU Law in 1971 and thereafter we moved to New Hampshire, bought a house, passed the Bar exam and started work as a freshly minted attorney.

4. My Hobbies:

I enjoy traveling by land and by sea. My wife and I have visited every continent ex-cept Antarctica. We particularly enjoy the Far East. Our favorites are India and the Taj Mahal, China and the Great Wall, Egypt and the Pyramids, Africa and the Serengeti, Cambodia and Thailand.

I also enjoy playing golf and cruising on my small boat on Great Bay. I enjoyed rid-ing horses with my wife in the Dover Christmas parade until recently when horses were not allowed.

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment:

I practiced law from 1971 until my retirement in 2014. In the beginning, I was a gen-eral practitioner and handled both civil and criminal cases but this all changed in 1981 when I represented Dover Rotarian Kerry Forbes when his housing project was denied in Dover despite the fact that it completely complied with the law. The planning board listened to the neighbors and not the law. The denial was promptly overturned in court proving, in fact, that one could fight city hall and win.

Thereafter, developers and municipalities became my constant clients seeking ap-provals usually for large projects and advice on planning and zoning issues. It was a difficult practice in that my clients were very sophisticated and demanding and hear-ings were conducted at night and trials in the daytime were frequent. My major cli-ents were Walmart, Home Depot, McDonalds, Market Basket, Liberty Mutual, Wentworth-Douglass Hospital, Huggins Hospital etc., as well as significant residen-tial real estate developers. I appeared before the NH Supreme Court about 40 times and also appeared countless times in lower courts. On the municipal side I assisted many cities and towns, the most memorable of which was the representation of the Town of Newington relative to the transition of Pease AFB to civilian uses.

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

For over 20 years I sang in church with the St. Thomas More folk group in Durham! My goal in life was to be a major league baseball player. The closest I came was in my senior year in high school when I pitched against Tony Conigliaro who later be-came a star for the Boston Red Sox. There were about 15 major league scouts in suits at the game. The first ball Tony hit off me was an easy ground out to third base. His next time up he hit a ball off me that is still in orbit ! The Red Sox chose Tony and not me!

7. Final words:

The imposition of COVID-19 restrictions has made it clearer to me than ever, that Rotary is all about person to person contact with likeminded Rotarians dedicated to doing good for the less fortunate. ZOOM is no real substitute for the personal side of Rotary. Hopefully, when the virus is defeated, we can get together and return to spreading the good news of Rotary to others and renew doing strong, community based projects.

This week I have the opportunity to interview and learn about our Rotarian, Rebecca Johnson.

Sit back, relax and let’s learn about Rebecca.

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

I think maybe 3 years.

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

I love hanging out with the folks at Bingo, both rotarians and non-rotarians. I always get a laugh or two and go home with the awful music from the computers stuck in my head. The back to school program is another one of my favorites. I enjoy the direct and tangible impact we are able to make with that program.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up:

My husband, Dog Wyatt, Cats Oscar and Damien, Chinchilla Dash, a dozen or so chickens including our Rooster, Goliath and I live in rural South Berwick. We love our quiet little homestead. We have a little cape, a blacksmith shop, lots of bee hives and a large garden where I grow lots of flowers from Spring to Fall. I grew up in Barrington.

4. My Hobbies:

I live and work my number 1 hobby, which is working with plants and flowers. I grow them, care for them and use them to create art. When I'm taking a break from flowers (which isn't a lot), I like to spend time with my husband and pets. Eric and I go to lots of concerts, movies and theatre productions and can't wait to get back to that again. We love to travel and stay at interesting air bnbs along the way.

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment:

I am first and foremost a small business owner. This means that I am the accountant, customer service, creator, sales person, delivery person and custodian. I love it! Flowers are my passion and I'm lucky that my passion is also my career.

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

You can make it to Bangor, ME from Dover, NH in 1hour and 15 minutes or from Harrisburg, PA to Dover, NH in 6hrs and 20 minutes if you let me drive.

7. Final words:

I think my final words will be something like "look out for that tree!"

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

I had joined Dover Rotary two years ago in July of 2018 at the recommendation of our gracious neighbors Noreen and Frank Biehl.

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

As a “newbie” within Rotary my favorite moments are probably yet to come, maybe pulling the ace of spades again with a winning ticket. Seriously though, I mostly enjoy the camaraderie within the Club and I’ve met many great and dedicated vol-unteers. I believe giving back to our community and helping the less fortunate, be it senior visitations, planting and mulching our Park gardens, delivering food, helping with Rotary Bingo or making worthy contributions are all rewarding moments. I be-lieve providing school back packs and recognizing “students-of-the-month” were my favorites.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up:

I’m a Midwesterner, growing up in Nebraska and Illinois, living and working in Chi-cago before my company transferred me to New Jersey and subsequently to Mas-sachusetts in 1972. I finally settled in Newburyport where I met Lorrie. We had lived there for 45 years until relocating to Dover about four years ago.

4. My Hobbies:

Besides woodworking, the gym and reading, today Lorrie and I love working on our new home while enjoying the benefits that come from living in such a beautiful set-ting on the river here in Dover. We are also looking forward to traveling again, visit-ing our kids and grandchildren spread across the country, in addition to touring Eu-rope and the Caribbean.

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment:

After graduation I began my engineering career with Western Electric (Lucent Technologies, Bell Labs). Although I had enjoyed my 34 years in engineering and management, it never provided the satisfaction that comes from creating and build-ing things. Having had the opportunity to retire 20 years ago has allowed me to en-joy and enhance my hobbies and volunteerism. While in Newburyport I was heavi-ly engaged in many civic and social organizations. I chaired the Planning Board and the Waterfront Trust. I was president and still am a member and of the Dalton Club, led several historic preservation initiatives and had worked closely with the Mayor and members of the City Council.

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

Fate brought us to Dover. We had never considered leaving Newburyport when we had seen this property in Dover from a real estate advertisement on Zillow. A habit of mine was browsing these RE apps checking out historic homes. There was this beautiful drone flyover video on YouTube of the Bellamy River, the reservation and Royalls Cove that spiked my interest, the house not so much. After dinning up in Portsmouth we drove by the property out of curiously. Ironically the agent was there with a couple that had the property under agreement. We stopped by, gave the agent our number then went back to our lives in Newburyport. She called us a week later saying that the agreement fell through and are we interested? Not really, but I gave her a low bid on the property anyway. It was Christmas Eve when we had received her call saying our bid was accepted. After some major home renova-tions, the rest is history.

7. Final words?

Moving to Dover was a decision that far exceeded our expectations. And joining Rotary had put the frosting on that cake. Thank you, Noreen and Frank for introduc-ing me to this great organization.

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

I joined the Rotary club of Dover in February of 2018, so that makes it a little over 2 years. I was instantly overwhelmed by the warmth and fellowship offered by the club.

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

My most favorite moment was the support I received by the club when I became a US Citizen. Many Rotarians made the trip up to Yarmouth, Maine to see me and cheer on me while I took the oath.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up:

I currently live in Wells, ME. I have lived in York County since I moved to the US from Bulgaria in 2006. I grew up in Bulgaria and moved to the US right after I turned 21. At first it was just an adventure, but soon after my move, I realized that this is where I belong.

4. My Hobbies:

I love being physically active. I grew up playing different sports and if you ask my mom she will tell you that there isn’t a sport that I haven’t tried.

My latest interest are Olympic weight lifting and CrossFit. I also enjoy traveling. I wish I could do more of it and I’m sure I will once we can travel again safely.

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment:

My current title is VP Residential Lending Officer. I work for Kennebunk Sav-ings Bank, and I have worked here for 8 years. I did not go to school for bank-ing or even anything related to banking, but somehow a small leap turned into a career. I started working at the bank as a teller and moved through many posi-tions and promotions to where I am today.

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

I am afraid of heights, terrified of spiders, and I can use nunchucks.

7. Final words:

I love being part of the Rotary club of Dover. Being so far away from my family is often hard. I have felt welcomed and cared for since my first meeting with the club.

Thank you to Jim Munro for introducing me to the club and to all of you Rotari-ans for making it feel like family.

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

I joined Rotary around 2001 not really knowing what it was at the time. I was hoping to network in the community since I was new in my career and someone suggested I check it out.

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

In my first month or so as a Rotarian I was roped into being the chair of the Roches-ter Rotary Club’s 2nd annual horse show. I was maybe 21 years old, knew nothing about horses, and was in over my head but in spite of it all we pulled it together and made it work! All contingencies were prepared for except for it snowing on us in the middle of May on the day of the event!

I always enjoy reading to the kids at the local elementary schools and helping with the literacy programs.

I also enjoy any chance I get to have my kids get involved with the hands on work, whether it is for the Senior Visits or weeding the Rotary Gardens.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up:

I grew up in Dover and still live here! I did live in Rochester for several years but we are back and here to stay.

4. My Hobbies:

Lately, my hobbies have changed a bit due to Covid. I’ve always been a gym rat but now I am doing more outdoor activities like playing tennis or taking hikes with my wife and kids.

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment

After starting a career in banking while still in high school, I grew into my role as a Financial Advisor for the last 17 years or so. I work mostly with local families helping them manage their investment portfolios to prepare for or live in retirement.

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

While in high school, I saw that there was a local bank who was interviewing for an internship position for a high school student. My guidance counselor said “No way Pellman, get back to class!”, but I bought my first suit and tie at Goodwill and showed up on the day of interviews anyway. Somehow I got the chance to meet with the interviewing team, parlayed the unpaid internship into a paying job, and the rest is history! It didn’t exactly pass the 4-Way Test at the time, but it all worked out!

7. Final words: I joined Rotary at first for all the wrong reasons, thinking it was more of a business building program like the Chamber of Commerce. I quickly realized that wasn’t at all what it was about, but I had a few amazing Rotarians take me un-der their wing and show me what “Service Above Self” truly means and I fell in love with it. I don’t know of a better way to help the world in big ways and small while making friends along the way. It has been tricky juggling work, kids, and Rotary during the pandemic.

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

Noreen: joined September 1988

Frank: joined November 1982

2. Our favorite Rotary moments:

Noreen - digging in the Rotary garden and watching it grow, installing the Rotary Pavilion sign at the top of the building where it can be seen far and wide, painting the gundalow with Cate and other Rotarians, listening to Rotary stories around a burning barrel selling Christmas trees, ringing the bell at the first and last meetings of an amazing year as president, the Children’s Library project, reading to kids, shoveling mulch in the rain, stuffing backpacks, our 95th Anniversary event, giving Phil the mirrorball, receiving my Paul Harris Fellow, reading the scholarship appli-cations and being convinced the future is in good hands with the next generation.

Frank - freezing on the tarmac of parking lots loaded with trees for sale and stoking the burning barrel to keep Rotarians warm, being president of two clubs, inviting Durham Rotarians to assist with bingo, returning to the Dover Club and Thirsty Tuesdays.

3. Where we currently live and where we grew up:

We grew up in Niagara Falls, NY and met in a bar called the Club; it was a dark and hazy place with sticky floors and a no-name, loud band where college kids gath-ered on Friday nights - some had sideburns and an Elvis swoop, others wore pleat-ed mini skirts and seriously teased hair - some smoked, some drank - perhaps too much - drove home without seat belts to an oddly familiar house (another story for another time) and amazingly turned out to be respectable adults.

One year after we married, we left Niagara Falls to follow job offers and seek new adventures. It was 1968! We drove to Akron, Ohio in an almost new car, stayed a year or so, adopted a dog named Charlie, had a baby boy named Kevin and headed off to , to Des Moines, Iowa. After a year or so, we journeyed back to Niagara Falls, gave Charlie away due to an incident with the mailman and had a baby girl named Shannon. We moved to the Ramada Inn in Dover, NH, with two kids and 22 house plants for three months in the summer of ’76 before crossing state lines to a new home in South Berwick, Maine.

By happenstance, several years later, we drove by a “For Rent” sign at the end of a long driveway to a house on the Bellamy River - it needed a lot of work, the drive-way was dirt, gravel and mush but the view was priceless, so we moved back across state lines to NH. In 1999, the owners decided to build condos on the land and tear the house down. One day we said, “They move houses don’t they?” and we did. We cut it up into three sections, hired a house mover and hauled it, one section at a time, a half mile north onto a lot covered in Queen Anne’s Lace, scrappy trees and broken bricks from an old Dover brickyard. After 20 years of renovation it is still a work in progress but one we are blessed to enjoy.

4. Our Hobbies:

Noreen: I create things … sourdough bread before it was a 2020 pastime, ginger-bread houses gardens, pencil sketches, painting (walls), dresses, drapes, boat cushions, slipcovers, face masks with matching scrunches for nine year girls, and writing a novel that may never get published unless I stop revising it… someday soon.

Frank: I build things … re-assembled pieces of a house into a home with new plumbing, electric, bathrooms, kitchens, stairs, decks, docks and floats, an up and down closet in a stairwell and an elaborate and not always functional television an-tenna system that Noreen doesn’t fully appreciate. I also golf occasionally, have re-ceived enough Prime-swished packages to secure the viability of Amazon delivery systems well into the future and watch Fox News frequently which Noreen doesn’t fully appreciate either.

5. Our Business Professions or Current Working or Non-Working Environments

Noreen: I’m a graduate of UNH and Simmons College with degrees in non-fiction writing and communication management, worked as a reporter for Foster’s Daily Democrat followed by a 30-year career at Wentworth-Douglass Hospital retiring in 2016 as VP of Community Relations. I’ve also authored a history of WDH in addi-tion to my unpublished novel, The Spokesperson, and occasionally free lance as a writer for a variety of projects.

Frank: I’m a graduate of the University of Buffalo and Golden Gate University with business degrees, managed Human Resources for Firestone Tire & Rubber, Dun-lop Tire & Rubber and Davidson Rubber/Textron. Now retired, I plow snow in the winter and water grass that refuses to grow in the summer.

6. Something our fellow Rotarians don’t know about us:

We have an amazing family, a son Kevin and his children 24-year old Derek, and 28-year old Alisha, and a daughter Shannon and her daughter, 9-year old Saman-tha.

We love to travel and every five years on our wedding anniversary in August we travel someplace special. We’ve climbed the Grand Canyon, traveled via train from Toronto to Vancouver, motored around Alaska, toured Southern France, Italy’s Amalfi coast and Portugal’s Algarve. On our 50th we visited the Southwest, looked for aliens at Roswell, watched bats fly out of the Carlsbad Canyon and marveled at the beauty of the White Sands, the Painted Desert and Arches National Parks. Will we ever travel again?

7. Final words:

Eleanore Rosevelt once said, “Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart.” Our Rotarian friends, past and pre-sent, have left so many footprints in our hearts - we are truly grateful.

Let’s sit back and learn more about Jim.

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

I originally was a member of the Rotary Club of Salem NH/ Methuen MA and was a member for about 10 years. I have been a member of the Dover Club since 2014.

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

Everything about Rotary is important to me. I love how we can pull a project together quickly to address a pressing need in the community like the Homeless outreach project we did last winter or the Read Aloud project we tried to do in response to the Covid Crisis. I also really enjoyed the time us senior Rotarians spent digging holes and building the CAP playground while freezing on a wet november day. I also get great enjoyment from our fellowship events like Thirsty Tuesday and most recently our sports car ride to see the Lupins in bloom. When I was in my former club we provided and cooked meals for the annual Special Olympics basketball tournament. That was a 3 day event and we had a ball. Basically I like to do any event that allows and encourages fellowship with our Rotary family.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up:

I lived in Massachusetts where I learned to drive for almost 60 years. I’ve lived in Dover since 2013

4. My Hobbies:

I enjoy film photography using my collection of plastic and antique cameras. I’m a life long learner and love to learn new things. I play the Penny Whistle moderately well and have been learning with very limited success to play the fiddle. Since Covid I’ve done a lot of gardening and landscaping along with some DIY projects and I have even started baking bread!

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment

My business is MG Print and Promotions which I started in 1986. I sell promotional products, apparel and printed materials of all kinds. I’m semi retired which gives me the luxury of servicing my long time clients and has freed me from the chore of chasing down new clients.

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

I can’t imagine. I’m pretty much an open book. I’m a child of the 70s and still hold the values that I developed then close to my heart. I’m an avid Beatles fan though I’ve never had a chance to see any of them live. I’m married to Pam my high school sweetheart. We have to adult children, Alison who lives in Dover and Andrew who lives in Epping. Lily, our granddaughter drives me crazy and brightens my day at the same time.

7. Final words:

When I first joined Rotary a mentor told me that “Rotary will change you if you let it” He was right. It makes us better people and better citizens.

 

1. How long have you been in Rotary?  

I became a Rotarian in 1984, so I've been a member for thirty-six years. Apparently, the club accepted children as members at the time.

 

2. My favorite Rotary moments. 

Over the years our hands-on projects were especially fulfilling for me. We cleared brush on Garrison Hill, cut down trees along the river on Central Avenue, painted structures at the Woodman Museum, assembled playground equipment on Park Street, and planted flowers in Rotary Park, in addition to a host of other undertakings. All of these activities combined innumerable opportunities for fellowship along with the satisfaction of seeing the tangible results of our work.

 

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up.

I grew up in Bristol, Connecticut, before ESPN made the city its home. In 1975 I moved with my family to New Hampshire and have lived in Dover for over thirty years.

 

4. My Hobbies.

Activities during the pandemic are limited, but my wife, Trish, and I enjoy golf, and we manage to walk our golden retriever for over a mile every day. I also enjoy reading, especially local authors like

Brendan Dubois, Paul Doiron, or Elizabeth Strout.

 

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment. 

I moved from Connecticut to become principal of Oyster River High School in Durham. After eight years I became the Superintendent of Schools for Dover, a position I held for sixteen years. After retiring from the superintendency I taught for a few years in the Education Department at UNH and at Antioch New England. At the same time I became involved with the board at Wentworth-Douglass Hospital and with a couple of state legal system boards in Concord as a volunteer. For the past few years I've been pretty much fully retired.

 

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me.

For several years in the sixties I was a hospital chaplain in a relatively large Catholic hospital in New Haven, Connecticut. That experience, dealing with life and death situations on a daily basis, has helped me over the years to keep things in perspective throughout my personal and professional life.

 

7. Final words. 

In 1961 John F. Kennedy famously challenged Americans to ask not what their country could do for them but what they could do for their country. Rotarians challenge themselves to do for their community, their country, their world. It's a rewarding, fulfilling objective. And it's fun. We need more women and men willing to commit to spending a bit of their time in service to others. If you're interested and would like more information check us out on Facebook.

 

It’s great to get to know our Rotarians!

 

1. How long have you been in Rotary?  

I had to check my files and was surprised to realize that in October I will have been in Rotary for 10 years.  The time has flown!

2. My favorite Rotary moments. 

My favorite Rotary moments are connected to service and fellowship.  In 2012 I went on a medical mission to Guatemala and had the opportunity to work with Rotarians from all over the world.  We were there for 14 days doing cleft palate surgeries.  It was amazing to see all the lives being changed by a small group of people.  I also enjoy any time our club members get together.  Whether for a meeting, to run Bingo or just to share in a social time – it’s always fun and lots of laughs.

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up.

I was born, raised and educated in NH.  My husband and I have lived in Dover for the last 27 years.

4. My Hobbies.

I like running, walking and hiking. I’ll bike and kayak – anything to get me moving outdoors.  If I have to sit still, I love reading and knitting.

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment. 

Eleven years ago I started my consulting business and have worked as a leadership consultant.  I provide Leadership and Management training and Executive Coaching.  Before March 2020, I traveled the globe to do my work.  Now I travel to my office and do it all virtually. 

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me. 

Some people think this is crazy but my husband and I got engaged after knowing each other for just 6 weeks.  I guess sometimes you just know when it’s right.  We’ve been married for 33 years.  So far so great!

7. Final words. 

If anyone is considering joining Rotary, try it!   Go to a meeting or contact your local group.  It has been a wonderfully positive experience for me to be part of a group dedicated to helping others and I’m confident it would be for others.

 

It’s great to get to know our Rotarians!

Rotary Club of Dover Rotarian Spotlight
Meet our Past President and Assistant Governor Melissa Lesniak
 
How long have you been in Rotary?
I have been in Rotary and a Rotarian with the Rotary Club of Dover since August of 2007.
 
My favorite Rotary moments:
That is hard as there have been so many great moments in Rotary.  I love when we read to the students and give away the dictionaries in the local elementary schools.  One moment during last year's reading at Horne Street School, I was with another Rotarian and she introduced me as the President of the Rotary Club of Dover.  One little boy raised his hand and said, "How can you be President, you are a girl".  Another moment was when we hand out the dictionaries to the 3rd graders in the Dover schools and as our Rotarians know, I am the Rotarian that always asks the kids if they know what the "longest" word in the dictionary is.  It just goes on from there.  They love it!
 
Where do I live and where did I grow up:
I live in Dover.  I have lived in Dover for the the past 3 years and for the past 46 years before, I lived in my hometown of Rollinsford.  I currently own 3 rental properties and recently bought my "forever condo" in South Dover, where I can enjoy time with family & friends and enjoy tending to my fabulous plants and flowers.
 
My Hobbies:
I love so many things, yet my favorite 3 are looking for sea-glass by the ocean, whether it be local or while vacationing, fitness training and competing against other women in local body-building contests and spending time with my little sister, Kristen.
 
My Business Profession:
For the past 15 years, I have helped families in New Hampshire and Maine buy, sell or rent their homes.  Real estate is my job, yet it is a passion of mine to help others in answering questions or hand-holding them through the process of real estate.
 
Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:
I have been a BIG sister with Big Brother Big Sister for the past 22 years and have mentored and helped 4 young girls turn into beautiful and successful women.  Currently, I am a BIG sister to 12 year old Kristen.
 
Final words:
I love where I live, work and play!

I had the pleasure of interviewing another of our Rotary Club of Dover Rotarian, and our Rotary Club Sergeant of Arms, Kathy Thurrott Lijoi.

1. How long have you been in Rotary?

1 and 1/2 years

2. My favorite Rotary moments:

The Guatemala trip with Kevin and the students, it was a life changing experience for myself and it was amazing to see through the eyes of 10 very special young ladies

3. Where I currently live and where I grew up:

I was born in Brooklyn, raised in northern New Jersey, raised my family in Vermont and moved to NH 7 years ago

4. My Hobbies:

I love to travel - there are so many places to see and I really need Covid to take a hike

My true love is being Nonnie to my 4 grandchildren - I absolutely love being a Mom but this part of life is so so much better. I am fortunate that they are right here in Dover.

I am a ski bum at heart and as I get older, I find the thrill of the easier trails is enough for me! I enjoy being on the mountain with my grand kids.

5. My Business Profession or Current Working or Non-Working Environment

I am a Information Technology expert with almost 37 years in the industry - I started as a software developer and have worked in many industries. For the past 20+ years I have been working in the call center business with a concentration on work from home.

I am currently consulting for a company out of south Florida (remotely) and I am a stakeholder in a start up a remote call center that will be doing Covid Tracing

6. Something my fellow Rotarians don’t know about me:

I am an avid walker and participate with my friends in major Breast Cancer walks throughout the USA. We have completed four Susan G. Komen 60 mile events, six Avon 39.3 events and countless 5k's. If you include the training miles and the actual walks, each of us has walked over a thousand miles to raise awareness and money to help find a cure.

The reason ...I am a breast cancer survivor and thriver and on July 17th I will celebrate my 23rd anniversary with no sign of disease.

7. Final words:

I am really happy that I joined the Dover Rotary, it has been a fabulous experience in many ways - new friendships, being able to give back to the community, and so much more. Joining helped me find a group of hard working, caring and fun people!

The Rotary Club of Dover NH annually award scholarships to local graduating high school seniors despite the many challenges of this year’s pandemic, our club will distribute $13,000. 
Students were required to complete an application. Finalists were then selected and chosen from 18 applications by our scholarship committee. 

According to the scholarship committee, they were particularly impressed with the students optimism and expressions of hope during such a uncertain time. They reiterated all applicants were more than deserving, half in balancing school, sports,, volunteerism and part-time work with grace. 

Congratulations to the selected winners, Sarah Craft - $1,000, Kylie Nelson-Marcia - $1,000, Joshua Keiman $1,000 and Emily Fraser - $10,000 Megan DeColfmacker Rotary Scholarship. All were from the senior class at Dover High School. 

The students were invited last week to attend our Rotary Virtual Zoom meeting so that they could except their awards and share of their future endeavors.
Through the Rotary Club of Dover NH’s Community Giving, our Club’made a $500.00 donation to June Pinkham to support the Ukulele Kids Club Inc., a national non-profit group that provides music thera- py and instruments to hospitalized patients. Their Southern NH Chapter has performed for WDH patients and other hospital patients in the region, reducing blood pressure, anxiety and helping them to be more receptive to their treatments. This chapter meets every other week at the Rotary Arts Pavilion at Henry Law Park and is open to anyone, any age interested in joining.
They bring so many smiles to the kids.
At this week's Rotary Club of Dover Club meeting, our Rotarians and guests had the opportunity to hear about their recent Dover High School student's International travels to Guatemala.
DHS Interact students, Aubrey, Kelsey, Emily, Katelynn, Maya, Elly ,Audrey, Sarah and Emilia reviewed their “awesome” trip as they each described one aspect of the trip from where they stayed at the Opal House, what they learned and how they appreciated their chance to see a different educational system and a different culture.
The students left their mark with their hand prints in a concrete walkway that they poured around a school. One of the most eye-opening activities as one student mentioned was bringing water filters to the homes and teaching the natives how to use them. It was appreciated as one of the moms gave the young women hugs in thanks for clean water. 
They also visited schools, the medical clinic, planted a garden with local students, played with bubbles, attended a cooking & beading class and learned how to pick coffee beans.
One of the events that took place happened after the students had left and were heading home.  A pregnant goat waited until they left to deliver her babies despite their vigils, but the farm named them RO and TARY in honor of their special visitors.
The students ended Wednesday's program with a video they produced, highlighting the students, the local children and the immense beauty of the volcanic region on a trip that changed their lives in many ways.
One of the Rotary advisors that accompanied the students, Kevin R. said that he had lead 7-8 mission trips and noted, “This is the best group I’ve ever had.”
Final words from the DHS Interact advisors Sue Stegman and Candice Hall were that they thanked Rotary for its “amazing” opportunity for the students the and ongoing support of the Dover Rotary support of Interact at DHS - including events, fundraisers, RYLA, the United Nations trip and the recent trip to Guatemala. Advisor, Sue, said “It’s an awesome thing,”
 
Through the Rotary Club of Dover NH’s Community Giving, our Club’s $500.00 donation along with help from others were able to help and support over 300 women and their babies through this year’s United Way of the Greater Seacoast Baby Shower. It wasn’t in person like in past years, yet through gift cards these families were able to get the baby showers that they may not have been able to have. 

Many stopped and others honked as they drove by while our Rotary Club of Dover NH was in downtown Dover at our annual Rotary Gardens Planting Day. Every Fall, we take out the old flowers and plants and know that the gardens will look fabulous again in the Spring.

Thank you to our Rotarians who joined us as we planted and mulched the gardens so those that live, work and play in Dover can enjoy this year. It is a project that our club looks forward to and cannot wait to see the gardens as they begin to grow.

We hope that you will love the gardens as much as we do!