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Stories
January 30, 2024 Meeting Preview
Bill Gladdis, Incoming President
Club Assembly
 
Gaddis, BillBill will lead a club assembly to discuss membership and foundation giving.  Please come with your ideas on expanding our membership and improving our foundation balance.
Notes from January 16, 2024

Monica Opalinski - Opal Upcycle

In three decades, Monica Opalinski has expressed her entrepreneurial spirit in her two business ventures. Originally from New Jersey, Monica began her business journey early on. In the '90s, she founded Pampered Paws, a venture she nurtured for 26 years. When the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic prompted the closure of Pampered Paws, Monica transitioned to her new business, Opal Upcycle. Coinciding with this change, the arrival of her first grandchild allowed her to spend several days a week with him while managing a business.

Monica started Opal Upcycle in March of 2023. Located off Fuller Road in Eden Prairie, Opal Upcycle breathes new life into outdated and discarded furniture, steering away from disposal. The showroom, transformed from offices, displays finished pieces available for purchase. Beyond being a store, Opal Upcycle creates customized furniture pieces as per the request of her customers. Monica, with her keen eye for design, can transform unfinished pieces into new treasures. Upholding a mission to reduce waste, Monica rescues furniture destined for landfills, giving them a second chance at life.

 

Despite the success of Opal Upcycle's craftsmanship, Monica faces the challenge of effectively marketing her business. Monica's dedication to her work extends into the community, as she engages with local organizations to promote her company and bring light to environmental concerns. A self-taught artisan inspired by social media and fueled by a son's passion for recycling, Monica Opalinski is not just creating furniture; she's weaving sustainability into Eden Prairie.
 
 
 

Vocational - Bill Gaddis

Bill Gaddis, now President of the Eden Prairie AM Rotary, has charted a professional journey spanning two decades. A proud graduate of the University of Wisconsin Green Bay with a Bachelor of Science, Bill kicked off his career as a hotel and restaurant manager. In 2015 he met his wife and later married her in 2019. In the same year, Bill moved into insurance as a sales and underwriting consultant. Beyond his career, Bill enjoys seeking new restaurants and trying different foods. A devoted Packers fan and a fan of cycling, he balances his professional responsibilities with a passion for the outdoors. Bill's community engagement shines through his involvement in the Rotary Club, where he served as the past President of the Rochester Rotary Club and as the Technology Chair and Facilitation Trainer. Enthusiastic to embrace new challenges, Bill is excited to embark on the role of President-Elect of the Eden Prairie AM Rotary, bringing his diverse experiences and leadership to the forefront.
 
 

Future meetings

  • January 30: Club Assembly
  • February 6: Rob Thompson, Director of Communications & Development, Performing Institute of Arts High School
  • February 20: Tim Conners & Irene Kelly, The Lake Street Initiative
  • March 5: Tammy Ryder-Harms, Kaleidoscope Teens
  • Please contact Lyndon Moquist or Jan Eian with program ideas.
 

Duty Roster for next meeting, January 30

  • Greeter: Blake Cadwallader
  • Check-in: Tim Conners
  • Inspiration: Josh Swanson
  • Door Prize: Holly Link
  • Vocational: Tim Conners
 

Announcements

  • January’s Swallowship will be held on January 25 at Unmapped Brewing, 14625 Excelsior Blvd, Minnetonka from 5:00—7:00pm.
  • Tim Conners discussed the Eco Expo which will be held on April 20 and is the club’s largest fundraiser of the year. The event will be held at the Eden Prairie Mall. We will have more tables available for vendors this year—48 tables on the main floor and ten tables upstairs. We are hoping for more EV car dealerships involved this year. The Family Fun Zone will be directly off the center court and will feature a live goat! We will have a raffle at the event. The kick-off planning meeting for Eco Expo will immediately follow today’s meeting and all are welcome to join the planning!
 

Transfer of Presidency

  • Effective today, January 16, Bill Gaddis will finish Dan O’Brien’s presidency term as Dan is heading to Florida for the rest of the winter. Bill will then continue with his presidency through the next Rotary year. Welcome, Bill! And thank you for everything you have done for the club during your presidency, Dan!
 

Happy Fives

  • Patrick D. said that he went to Eden Prairie High School for the mentorship program recently. Patrick was impressed with the fact that he received thank you cards from the students he worked with!
  • Aaron C. also enjoyed going to the mentorship program at the school. Aaron said that he plans to send $20 to each student who sent him a thank you card!
  • Tim C. is happy to receive the first Eco Expo check from a sponsor!
  • Dan O’B. has greatly enjoyed his time as President of this club. He is also looking forward to spending several months in Florida!
  • Sharon B. is happy to wish her dog a happy birthday. Her dog is 18 years old!
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