Rotary Club of Kerrville, Texas                  Chartered February 26, 1926                               District 5840

Club Information

Welcome to the Rotary Club of Kerrville!


Service Above Self

We meet Wednesdays at 11:45 AM
Inn of the Hills
1001 Junction Hwy
Kerrville, TX  78028-4913
United States
District Site
Venue Map
 Kristy was promoting the veterans breakfast
 Sponsored by the new members of Rotary
Charlie take the floor. He does a lot to help bring tourist dollars to Kerrville
Just a partial list of topics discussed
Walt Koenig, Kerrville Chamber of Commerce President, and a member of our Noon Rotary Club, shares his expertise on the country of Afghanistan derived from his time there (and in Iraq) as a U.S. diplomat.
According to Walt, Afghanistan is a country of contradictions - 90% of the population have cell phones, while electricity penetration is amongst the lowest in the world.  It is a landlocked country of about 260,000 square miles in area (about the size of Texas).  The country's population is estimated at 37 million, with 70% below the age of 30.  It's a highly tribal country with 11 major ethic groups and 2 official languages (Dari & Pashtu).  Afghanistan also has a very long history of occupation, resistance and upheaval dating back to the time of Alexander the Great (who conquered the country in 330 on his way to India).
With respect to U.S. involvement in Afghanistan, 9/11/2001 is the date that changed everything.  The attack on the twin towers led to our direct involvement in the region.  According to Walt, with little obstacles or military resistance, getting into the country was not difficult (particularly for a fighting force like the U. S. military).  Gains were easy at first, and there was much international involvement and support.  A constitution was drafted and initial elections appeared both clean and fair.
However, early gains were lost quickly, and Walt surmised that the Iraq conflict was primarily to blame.  With a diversion of assets and attention to the Iraq War, things got messy in Afghanistan.  A huge influx of funds earmarked for development led to rampant corruption.  The weak central government was unable to control the provinces and tribal areas, and to make matters worse, Afghanistan's neighbors were less than helpful.  Iran, China, Pakistan and other surrounding ex-Soviet states were all prohibitive and restrictive, also influencing discontent and upheaval in the country's outlying regions.  General complacency also contributed to these troubles.
A military and civilian surge helped the U.S. stabilize the situation as a response to these losses.  The initial military surge, and subsequent increase in troop count, helped restore equilibrium to the country.  Working in tandem with the troop surge, the whole of the U.S. Government worked to rebuild civil society in Afghanistan through re-establishing the rule of law, rebuilding essential government structures, and working to create opportunities for economic development.  Walt was integrally involved in developing economic opportunities in Afghanistan, as he began the first Chamber of Commerce in the country's long history!  He worked to create $100M in trade deals, many with American blue-chip companies, on a $1M budget.  As a matter of fact, Walt mentioned that this experience is what drove his interest in working with chambers in future endeavors. He also met his lovely wife Maria, during his stint in Afghanistan, as it was her responsibility to check references in vetting applications for Visas for the chamber.
According to Walt, despite the relative stability, there is still a lot to do in Afghanistan.  However, with a different approach from the White House - one more of pressuring the enemies of our efforts there instead of appeasing them and criticizing the efforts of the Afghan people - he is optimistic of the continued gains we can achieve.  Pakistan is key.  They are responsible for creating, funding, and mobilizing the Taliban, and were clearly guilty of harboring Osama Bin Laden during our search for the terrorist leader.  Walt mentioned that we have significant leverage on Pakistan, and with a concerted effort, we may be able to work with the country to help bring more lasting stability to Afghanistan.  He also mentioned the importance of maintaining a continued military presence in Central Asia.
Thank you Walt for sharing your expertise!
New Member Tim Cooney led us in the prayer and pledge.
George and Richard lead us in God Bless America.  As an added bonus, Richard also shared some of the war time lines to the original song!
Please keep Carolyn Northcutt and Austin Clarkson in your prayers due to the recent passing of family members (Son-in-Law and Father, respectively).
Also, please keep Kristy (who recently had a hip replacement), Bob Finch (wife Deborah is going through kidney failure), Jimmy Hutto (had shoulder surgery recently), and Charlie McIlvain's wife, Rhonda (extended hospital stay) in your prayers as we wish for speedy recoveries for all.
We took time to honor the Tivy Antler Basketball Team for a great season.  Congrats girls!  It's also worth noting that the ENTIRE team is composed of straight A students and a host of Academic All Americans!  What an accomplishment!!
Kristi Announces the winner of the Wine Jimmy Hutto
 Bob Schmerbeck introduces the Paul Harris Fellows     Kristi gets excited
Lucy Wilkins, Jena Carter, Cindy McNeely, Rhonda Richter & Tom Terrell all presented with Paul Harris.
Crystal Dockery, Jimmy Hutto & Alan Massey with Paul Harris plus 3
Kristi Vandenberg Paul Harris plus  4                                                                       
Bob Fairchild Paul Harris plus 5              
Why to go for all!!!!                   
 Clint Morse introduces Mary Wilson the Democratic Candidate
Followed by Mat McCall the Republican Candidate
 Mary explained why she was running and her ideas.
Matt told us of his plan if elected
The program last Wednesday was provided by Dr. Gene Dowdy, who is in his third year as conductor of the Symphony of the Hills. He is a professor of music at UTSA, and conducts the orchestra there as well. Music is in his family, as both his father and grandfather were band directors, and both his daughters are  musicians.
  He gave a great program on a "500 years of music in 5 minutes".  Accompanied by his violin, he explained how dance tunes were a common way to lift people's spirits in the middle ages. Later, composers took these songs and adapted them into concert tunes. Dr. Dowdy expertly played bits of songs from Bach, Mozart, and Beethoven, and then followed with a bit of relatively contemporary music, "Dust in the Wind" by Kansas.  

The Symphony of the Hills is a professional orchestra drawn from the Hill Country and Central Texas, and provides about five concerts per year. In addition to the orchestra performances, dedicated board members and volunteers educate local kids about music, seeing over 2,000 students per year.   The next Symphony of the Hills performance is April 26th, and is called "Strike up the Band". 
Chris Braaten won two tickets to the Symphony of the Hills next show.
George honored our guest speaker with a song.
New Member Chris Braaten led us in the prayer and pledge.

      Just a reminder that our next Rotary Satellite meeting is tomorrow, April 17th at 5:30pm. Meeting will be held in the Community Room of Wells Fargo Bank at Five Points (second floor). Our guest speaker this month is Martin Peterson, Forensic Anthropologist. We hope you will join us and as always refreshments will be served.


Thank you,

Tricia Byrom

Walt Koenig was wearing his Rotary pin, and his name was called, so he won a fine bottle of white wine.
  Nadia Noel-Anglade and Marta Diffen both exchanged there red badges. Way to go ladies!!!
The Satellite Club is having a Social and Networking event at Basement Brewers of Texas, 5:30-7:30, Tuesday March 20th. The address is 521 Clay St.  Come join the club for great networking opportunities and socializing, and bring a potential Rotarian.
 The meeting was a success, this is a picture of the menu. For a lot of the folks that came to meeting this was their first trip the BBT.
Contact Us 

Caroline Wilson 
Club Administrator

(512) 787-7964

Mailing Address:

Rotary Club of Kerrville
218 Quinlan St. PMB #561
Kerrville, TX 78028


Club Events
April 2018
Club Executives & Directors
President Elect
Board Member
Board Member
Board Member
Board Member
Board Member
Board Member
Past President

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Club Function
May 02, 2018
Chip Roy and Joe Kopser
May 09, 2018
Second Candidate Forum, Candidates for House of Representatives
Satellite Meeting 5:30 Wells Fargo Building
May 15, 2018
301 Junction Hwy
May 16, 2018
May 23, 2018
Javier Ferreras
May 30, 2018
Farewell Speech
Club Function
Jun 06, 2018
Citizenship Awards Program
Jun 13, 2018