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Al Coblentz was installed as president of the Kalona Optimist Club at the annual banquet held on Thursday evening, Oct. 5 in the Warren and Ila Miller home, rural Kalona.
Other officers installed by Past District Governor Ed Yoder were Ron Slechta, Vice President; Sheryl Miller, Secretary-Treasurer; Tyler Coblentz, Jim Crowther, Julia Kramer, Deanna Poe, Donna Merck and Kendal Kemp, Board of Directors members; Alvin Kramer, Immediate Past President.
Kramer presented the Optimist of the Year award to Ron Slechta in part for his work on planning the 2018 Iowa Optimist Convention for next August.
Dennis Phares, Iowa District Governor for 2017, presented Kramer with the past president’s trophy and Kramer presented Coblentz with the president’s pen. Phares also announced that the Kalona Club had qualified as Distinguished Club and Zone 12 had qualified as Distinguished Zone. The Club had +3 in membership and had sponsored a new club in Boone.
Past District Governor Ed Yoder also paid tribute to Phares for a job well done for serving the past year as Iowa District Optimist President.
Receiving years of service awards were:
49-year Charter members- Ed Yoder, Emil Schlabaugh and J. D. Boyd.
46 years- Ray Reschly.
45 years- Alvin Miller.
41 years- Lynn Merck.
30 years – Jerry Kauffman.
25 years – Meg Nagel.
17 years – Ron Slechta.
14 years – Anna Yoder.
13 years – Bob and Sheryl Miller.
9 years – Denny Phares.
7 years – Alvin Kramer, Julia Kramer, Carl Poe, Deanna Poe.
6 years – Donna Merck, Kenneth Wehr (Friend of Optimist).
5 years – Terrance Phares and Wanda Phares, both Friends of Optimist.
4 years – Al Coblentz plus Kalona Auto Service & Parts, Kalona Tire and Marc and Gerri Weaver, all Friends of Optimists.
3 years – Tyler Coblentz.
2 years – Clair Miller, David Worthington, Kendal Kemp plus KCTC, Hills Bank & Trust Co, Beatty Peterseim Funeral Home, CBI Bank & Trust, and The Kalona News, all Friends of Optimist.
1 year – Angela Eash, Michael Eash, Marcus Hall, Kate Merck, Ryan Merck, Dale Scheibe, Nancy Worthington and Kalona Builders Supply, Friend of Optimist.
New Members in 2016-17 – Jim Crowther, Roger Weber plus Miller Hybrids, CS Auto Body LLC, Tuscan Moon, Rick & Stacy Leach and Kalona Blacksmith & Welding / Robert C. Yoder, Friend of Optimist.