Optimist International President Dave Bruns announces the extension of the "Season of Giving" incentive for Optimist Members, Clubs and Districts until the end of February. Take this opportunity to add new Members at no cost to your Club!  New Clubs built in the 2015-16 Optimist year with 15-24 Charter Members receive a $100 grant and Clubs formed with 25+ Charter Members receive a $200 grant to go towards the Club's first project.
Summits Starting This Month!
The 2016 Optimism Summits & Regional Conferences begin February 27 in Jacksonville, Florida. Optimists are encouraged to attend to participate in this training experience to provide you with the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to lead a relevant and thriving Club.
To find a complete listing of Summits you may register to attend, please click
  here .
Take Action in May 

The month of May is  Optimists in Action Month!  During the month of May, Optimist Clubs will create a widespread spirit of unity bringing together Optimist Members and other community volunteers for a variety of local-based activities, fundraisers and special events. Optimist Clubs can conduct any program or special event that meets the needs of their community and should contact local media outlets in hopes of receiving publicity.  Take photos and videos and share your Club's event on social media by including the hashtag #OptimistsInAction.  Learn more at www.optimist.org/action .
Optimist Leadership Academy Nominations
Nominations for individuals to attend the fourth Leadership Academy class will be accepted until March 15. Candidates selected will be invited to attend a one-day training program to share their leadership knowledge and participate in an advanced leadership program. As a member of the Leadership Academy, individuals are being recognized for their exceptional leadership skills and as future leaders of the Optimist International organization. There are no other commitments or obligations. If you are one of "the best of the best," or know someone who is, please make a recommendation. Nominations can be sent to the Leadership Development Committee at  leadership@optimist.org .
Support Higher Education

The new Optimist International Oratorical World Championships Contest will be June 23-24, 2016 at Saint Louis University Center of Global Citizenship in St. Louis, Missouri. The event is designed to empower youth to become effective communicators and confident global citizens.
Optimist Members support over 70% of the oratorical scholarship awards. Give the gift of higher education by donating to the event 
here . We encourage you to post the Firstgiving Donation link on your Facebook/Twitter pages to share with your non-Optimist Member friends.

Optimist International's Board of Directors has set a goal of 100,000 Members by the organization's 100th year in 2019. Your Club is urged to do its part in setting its own goal of increasing its membership between now and our 100 Year Anniversary. Help assure that your Club will be "Bring Out the Best" well into the future.
Upcoming Events:
February through May, 2016 

April 1-2, 2016 (St. Louis, MO) 

June 23-24, 2016 (St. Louis, MO)

June 30-July 2, 2016 (Quebec City, QC) 
July 3-5, 2016 (Quebec City, QC)

July 20-Aug 4, 2016 (Palm Beach Gardens, FL)
Top Clubs by Membership
Each Member effectively impacts the lives of 35 children a year.  How many is your Club reaching?

5. BOYERTOWN, PA (199)
6. BFT-WARSAW, IN (184)
8. HIGHLAND, IL (160)
10. WAUSAU, WI (146)

*Membership numbers as of Tuesday, February 2, 2016


U nited States & Caribbean:

If you have any comments, concerns or suggestions for the International Board of Directors, please send to board@optimist.org
Plan for Convention in Quebec City

Janet Lloyd, International Convention Committee Chair, encourages all Optimist Members to make their plans now for the 2016 Optimist International Convention in Quebec City! If you are traveling from a country other than Canada, you will need a passport, and other international travelers will also need a Visa. 

Visit www.optimist.org/convention for more details about the event, including housing, travel and a preliminary schedule.  Registration will be available soon. 

Submit Your Club's Reel Optimism Video Starting February 17
Adult and Youth (JOOI) Clubs, in addition to non-Optimist community groups, nonprofits and individuals, can submit their Reel Optimism video starting on February 17. Entries can be made in the Club Showcase, Youth Club Showcase or Put Your Optimism on Display categories and should visually illustrate the sentence, "How My Best Brings Out the Best in Others."  An integrated contest hub will allow you to easily upload your video by posting a YouTube, Instagram or Vine link.  

Go to www.optimist.org/ReelOptimism or visit the Reel Optimism Facebook contest app on the Optimist International Facebook page.  The deadline to submit your Club's video is April 15.  Check it out!
Insurance Renewal

As part of the Optimist International insurance renewal process for our US Clubs , we are seeking information about your Club's programs and activities .  This information will help Optimist International obtain the best possible value in insurance coverage with a policy that meets the needs of our Clubs. 

Please complete this survey by Sunday, February 7.
Registering Club Officers Has Never Been Easier

silver-keyboard2.jpg Optimist Clubs can now register their 2016-17 officers online. A current Club officer will need to login to the   Optimist Leaders website and click "Reports" on the right-hand side of the screen. Then click on "Club Officer Elect Report" and you will be able to select the names of the Club Members who will be filling leadership roles during the upcoming Optimist year. If you have questions or need assistance, please call Charlotte in the Member Services Department at (800) 500-8130 ext. 247.
Call for Nominations for International Officers

The deadline for self-nominations for the positions of  International President, International Board Member and International Vice President is Friday, April 1, end of the business day.

The following requirements must be met:
  • International Vice President nominees must be nominated by at least two Clubs each from different Districts within the Region.
  • International Board Member nominees must have completed a full term as a District Governor.
  • International President nominee must have served a full term as a District Governor and a Vice President.
  • International President nominees must be nominated by at least two Clubs, each from a different Region.
  • Clubs must submit a letter on Club letterhead signed by the Club President.
Please contact the International Office or send a letter to:  International Officer Nomination,  Optimist International,  4494 Lindell Blvd.,  St. Louis, MO 63108
Junior Golf Updates
Optimist Golf logo

Junior Golf Tour Events
T hese tournaments are 36-hole events for boy and girl junior golfers ages 11-18.  Top finishers from these tournaments will be exempt from having to qualify for the summer 2016 Optimist International Junior Golf Championships at PGA National Resort and Spa in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.  Tournaments are ranked with Junior Golf Scoreboard. Click here for more details on the Optimist Junior Tour Events
Optimist Junior Golf Qualifiers
To learn more about how junior golfers can qualify for the Championships, click here .
The 2016 Hugh Cranford All-Scholastic
Junior golfers ages 16-18 can apply now to be considered for entry into the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships based on their academic and community service experience.  Help spread the word by sending the information to your District Webmaster and Bulletin Editor.  Junior golfers selected to the team will receive an automatic exemption into the 2016 Optimist International Junior Golf Championships and complimentary registration (the selected participant's registration fee-which is inclusive of tournament entry, hotel accommodations and meals-will be waived).  The exemption includes an invitation to participate in the Championships without having to play in a qualifying tournament.  The deadline to apply is April 1, 2016.  To apply, click here.
District, Clubs and Members - Become a Course Sponsor for the Championships! 
Sponsorships are available for only $100.00.  Help us continue to make the tournament affordable for our junior golfers.  Money is used to help enhance the tournament off the course for the long drive competition, glow-ball event, college coach seminar, video arcade room, etc. Deadline is April 30.  Make check payable to Optimist International Youth Programs Foundation, Inc. and mail to: Optimist Junior Golf, 4494 Lindell Blvd, St. Louis, MO  63108.
Bring Out the Best in Your Club's Youth Sports Program

Attention Optimist Leaders: we recently introduced the Coaching Coaches training programs for coaches and parents and we already have two Optimist Clubs who have committed to moving forward with the trainings. The responses have been very positive and we are thrilled to be able to provide this benefit for all Optimist Clubs. To request additional information and to hear about creative funding ideas to pay for the training programs, contact Bill Bommarito (President of Coaching Coaches) directly at (314) 909-0500 or  bill.bommarito@coaching-coaches.com. The goal of the training programs is to help each Optimist Club continue to raise its standards and create the best possible sporting experience for its youth participants.  It is not too late for your spring sports.  Optimist International wants to be a leader in this arena!
Souper Bowl of Caring

Souper Bowl of Caring is a national youth-led movement of giving and serving that is transforming Super Bowl Weekend into a time to think of our neighbors in need. In schools, participation takes place during the week leading up to Super Bowl Sunday. Your JOOI Club can join in this movement and make a significant impact in your local community. For more information, click here.
2014-15 Awards & Recognition

The numbers are in and the awards have been determined for the 2014-15 year.  The Awards & Recognition Special can be viewed here
Congratulations to all Optimist Clubs and Members who made the list. Well done!

For more information about awards and recognition, click here.

NEW! Club Website & Member Portal for Optimist Clubs

Optimist International and Portalbuzz have partnered to offer an online Club management system that includes a robust Member/administrator portal and an easy-to-get-started Club website. 

See what great Clubs are buzzing about! Sign up for your free 30-day trial of Portalbuzz at portalbuzz.com/optimist .
Help Optimist International Achieve the 10,000 Facebook Likes Milestone

Optimist International has a robust and comprehensive Facebook page, where a variety of information is posted.  This includes Club news, International events, photos & videos, informative articles and much more.  Help Optimist International achieve 10,000 Facebook followers by liking its official Facebook page and sharing the page with your Facebook friends.  And, make sure to tag Optimist International and include the hashtag #Optimist in all of your Optimist-related posts.  
Club Grant Deadline

Optimist International Foundation is accepting applications for the 2016 Club Grant Program.  Any Adult Club served by OIF is eligible to apply for a $500 grant to be used for a new project of the Club.  

Applications must be received in the St. Louis office by March 11. Applications and more information are available online here . Don't miss out on this opportunity to receive $500 for your Club's new project!

© 2015 Optimist International