Join us in beautiful Avon, Colorado at the Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa on October 14 through 16, 2022

and celebrate this year's theme “Imagine Rotary for All.”


At this year’s District Conference you’ll:

  • Be inspired by the speakers
  • Learn about Rotary
  • Get ideas for your club
  • Make new friends
  • Have fun!
Keynote Speakers
photo of Karl Mecklenburg in a blue Denver Broncos shirt standing in front of a gray background
Our Friday night keynote speaker is Karl Mecklenburg!
Karl rose from a college football walk-on and twelfth-round draft choice, to become one of the top players in Denver Broncos history.  During his twelve-year career with the Broncos Mecklenburg played in three Super Bowls, played in six Pro Bowls, and was named as a team captain.  Karl is widely known as the most versatile player in modern NFL history, having played all seven defensive front positions, sometimes during a single game.  In 1987 Mecklenburg was named AFC Linebacker of the year, and Defensive Player of the Year.  Since retiring from the NFL, Mecklenburg has been inducted into the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame, The Denver Broncos Ring of Fame, and for ten consecutive years was named as a semifinalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Karl focuses on inspiring long term positive change in teams and individuals.
Our Saturday night keynote speaker is Ramesh Ferris!
Ramesh is a Polio Survivor who resides in Whitehorse, Yukon Canada. He is the current Assistant District Governor in the Rotary District of 5370, and he is a Major Donor of the Rotary Foundation.
Ramesh has shared Rotary’s End polio message with countless heads of state and other world leaders. He has spoken to delegates at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City and to many Rotarians at various Rotary International Conventions, Zone Institutes and District Conferences around the world.
Ramesh has traveled the world to convince more people to support the end of polio!

Our Saturday morning keynote speaker is Shirley Otero!

Shirley shares, "I was born and raised in “El Valle de San Luis” in the town of San Luis, the oldest settlement in the State of Colorado. My ancestors were Jicarilla Apache and the Mexicanos who were part of the original settlers that in the mid 1800’s settled on the Sangre de Cristo Land Grant in Costilla County, CO. I am a product of the
civil rights and Chicano Movement of the 1970’s.

I am a Chicana activist who in 1977 was the co-founder of the Land Rights Council in Chama, CO, an organization dedicated to regaining the “historical use rights” for the heirs of the Sangre de Cristo Land Grant. The LRC is one of the oldest non-profits in the state. I am the current president with a board of nine  community members

I have served as President for the Colorado Statewide Parent Coalition, member of the Latino Advisory Committee for the Colorado Commission on Higher
Education and Colorado Western State University, Executive Director of the Move Mountains Youth Project, Director of the San Luis Food Pantry and organizer for
twenty years of the annual La Raza Youth Leadership Conference, Grand Junction, CO.

I have received numerous leadership awards, most recently 2021 inducted into The Cesar Chaves Leadership Hall of Fame, the Chinook Fund for my service with
civil rights work and on February 2, 2018 on the anniversary of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, the New Mexico State Legislature and the New Mexico Land
Grant Consejo awarded me the “Lifetime Achievement Award” for my forty-two years of land grant work in Colorado and New Mexico. 
I strongly believe and support issues that fight for racial and gender equity. 

I am the proud mother of four daughters, Angelina, Isabel, Felicia and Lucia and the grandmother of Isaiah Otero Tercero and Maximilano Otero Rivera.
I currently live and work in San Luis, CO."

Dian Edwards, PDG 2012-2013
District 5870 – Central Texas, Austin N. Metro
Passport Rotary Club
Dian Edwards is a graduate of St. Mary’s Academy in Austin, Texas and received her Bachelor of Liberal Studies Degree in Public Administration from St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas. During her professional career, she serves in an administrative role with the Texas Department of Transportation and later as an Education Coordinator for the Northeast Community College of
Her Rotary service includes: Rotary Club President (twice); District Assistant Governor; District Trainer; District Governor (2012-2013); Assistant Rotary Coordinator (2017-2019); Rotary Coordinator (2019-2022).   She chaired the 2014 Multi-district High Country President Elect Training Seminar, served as General Chair of the 2016 Rotary Zones 21B-27 Institute, and represented District 5630 as a delegate to the 2016 Council on Legislation.

Dian currently serves as her District’s New Club Development Chair and Education Coordinator for the District Membership Chair. Sher also serves as the Education Coordinator for the Lone Star Division of the Rotary Leadership Institute.
Dian achieved Major Donor status through her sustaining  membership in the Paul Harris Society.
You'll have time each day to mix and mingle with fellow Rotarians, learn more about Rotary, and be entertained. This isn't one of "those" conferences. We want you to relax, have fun, and enjoy your time in the Vail Valley, too!

Friday, October 14

  • Noon to 5PM Registration
  • 5:30 - 6:15 Cocktails
  • 6:15 - 8:00 Dinner with keynote from Karl Mecklenburg
  • 8:00 - 10:00 Entertainment

Saturday, October 15

  • 7:45 - 8:45: Breakfast and Speaker: Shirley Romero on "Latino Engagement in Rotary"
  • 8:45 - 9:00 Break
  • 9:00 - 9:50 Breakout*
  • 9:50 - 10:00 Break
  • 10:00 - 10:50 Breakout*
  • 10:50 - 11:00 Break
  • 11:00 - 11:50 Breakout*
  • Noon - 5: Lunch on your own, organized activities including a Scavenger Hunt of Vail Village, or time on your own
  • 5:45 - 6:30 Cocktails
  • 6:30 - 8:00 Dinner with keynote speaker Ramesh Ferris
  • 8:00 - 10:30 Bo Hale Band
*See the list of breakout topics below

Sunday, October 16

  • 7:45 - 8:45 Breakfast and Rotary Youth Exchange Flag Ceremony (an annual highlight of the conference!)
  • 8:45 - 11:00
    Guest Speaker Dian Edwards, Presidential Representative, PDG 2012-2013
    District 5870 – Central Texas, Austin N. Metro, Passport Rotary Club

    2021-2022 Awards
    DGN Announcement
    Legislative Session, and Closing Session
  • 11:00 and after Return home

The Breakout Session Topics:

9:00 - 9:50
Diversity and Inclusion
Young Member Engagement
10:00 - 10:50
Diversity and Inclusion
Young Member Engagement
Women's Empowerment
11:00 - 11:50
Toastmaster and Rotary
How to Start a New Club
Women's Empowerment
Breakout Session Descriptions
Diversity and Inclusion - Ways To Promote Diversity In Any Organization led by Shirley Romero

This presentation will discuss ways to diversify any organization, including a discussion on inclusion, diversity, and equity. It begins with building relationships with the communities in your area. Focusing on the Rotary's Core Values of Fellowship, Integrity, Diversity Service, and Leadership, attendees will discuss the process of exemplifying these qualities.


Fundraising led by Dr. Rick Smith and Martha O’Keefe

Fundraising is a key component of Rotary Clubs’ ability to provide many acts of service.  District 5470 is offering a breakout session at this year’s District Conference.  This session will highlight the components of a fundraiser as well as the roles and responsibilities of club members.  A large part of this session will be sharing of ideas of successful fundraisers and ones that didn’t go quite as planned. And be prepared to say “Don’t be afraid of the ask.”

House of Friendship Club Displays
One of the best things about District Conference is getting ideas from other clubs.
This year, your club can participate in the House of Friendship! Your club can share service projects, fundraisers, etc. Information on how to register will be out soon. If you'd like to help with this, please email Martha O'Keefe at
Why attend District Conference?
When you attend the District Conference, you'll learn about all that Rotary is outside of your club.
You'll meet and get to know other Rotarians, learn what other clubs are doing for service projects and
fundraisers within the District, and learn what Rotary is doing worldwide.
Here's what a few past District Conference attendees have to say:

“I attend District Conference to reconnect with Rotarians around the district.   We reflect on and share our passions while we celebrate together.”

- Dr. Rick Smith, Pine River Valley Centennial Rotary Club

“I enjoy meeting other Rotarians not only from Colorado but from the whole world. Every Rotarian has a unique outlook on life and I appreciate this contact and enjoying the fellowship with them.”

- Randy Woods

“I attend so that I can learn more about what is going on with district 5470, improve my Rotary skills for things like grants and club administration, and enjoy fellowship with Rotarians across the district!”
- Mike Trueblood, Edwards Rotary Club
"I look forward to district conference every year! I've met great people, gotten amazing ideas, and had so much fun. If you're on the fence, come join us and see what all the fuss is about!"
- Dr. Penny Wilson, Vail Rotary Club
Sam Kevan, District Governor has the following reasons for attending District Conference:
1. Be inspired by great speakers.
2. Learn how increasing diversity will strengthen your Rotary Club
3. Learn new ideas on attracting and keeping Rotary members.
4. Renew in-person fellowship with district-wide Rotary friends not seen in 3 years.
5. Enjoy the ambiance of a beautiful venue and the incredible scenery of Vail Valley.
  • Through September 5: $250
  • September 6 through September 25: $275
  • September 26 through October 4: $300
Registration closes at midnight on October 5
Your registration includes all meals, presentations, breakouts, and entertainment.
There will be a cash bar for evening cocktails and after-dinner entertainment.
Your conference registration does not include your lodging. Reservations for the Westin can be made below.
The conference is being held at the Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa in Avon, Colorado.
Renew and inspire yourself at The Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa, Avon, Vail Valley. Located near Colorado's scenic Vail and Beaver Creek Mountains, our hotel offers a convenient location. Whether you're seeking an active outdoor adventure or looking for a more leisurely pace, there's something for everyone, from hiking and mountain biking in the spring, summer & fall to skiing and sleigh rides in the winter. Experience our relaxing lobby bar, dine at our new modern American grill, Stoke & Rye or grab a coffee from Starbucks. Pamper yourself at Spa Anjali with the Ponderosa Pine Therapy treatment. When your day comes to an end, relax in our spacious hotel suites offering a custom kitchen and a fireplace. Curl up in your Westin Heavenly® Bed and experience a deep, restful sleep that prepares you for another day on the slopes


Conference registration does not include lodging at the hotel.

Hotel reservations made until midnight on September 13th will be at a special rate of $169/night. There is an additional $10 resort fee per night and $10 valet parking fee per night. The resort fee gets you access to:

  • 24-hour access of the Athletic Club and business center
  • Access to the outdoor heated lap pool and three infinity hot tubs
  • Shuttle service (hourly) to Beaver Creek and Vail Villages (first-come, first-served)
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Can my family come with me?
A: ABSOLUTELY! Not only is this a great time to expand your knowledge about Rotary, but also is it a great time to spend with your family. There are a lot of family-friendly activities in the Vail Valley including hiking, cycling, rafting, fishing, and many more! They can also join you for the meals, speakers and entertainment.
Q: What if I can't attend? What's the cancellation policy?
A: We understand that things happen. Below is the cancellation policy for the conference:
  • Cancellations before midnight September 5: full refund minus $20 processing fee
  • Cancellations between September 6 and midnight September 25: 80% refund
  • Cancellations between September 26 and midnight October 4: 50% refund
  • Cancellations after October 4: no refund, but can be replaced by another person nominated by the original registrant

The cancellation policy for hotel rooms from the Westin:
  • You must contact the hotel 7 days prior to arrival, 1 night deposit is charged and is nonrefundable.