Governor’s Message

This year as we celebrate the centennial of Optimist International, it’s an ideal time to reflect on the accomplishments of the past – the kids we’ve helped, the support we’ve given our communities, and the friends we’ve made from around Illinois and the world because we are Optimists. Those accomplishments are the strong foundation that makes us ready to Bring Out the Best Into the Next Century.

Now let’s turn our focus and our energy to the future. There are greater needs than ever before to support the kids and our communities. We must each ask ourselves what needs to be done, then do it. Even a small effort can make a huge difference. You can make a difference, and I encourage you to start today.

Our International President, Rebecca Butler Mona, encourages each of us to Promise Yourself. That starts with three small steps:

  • Sponsor a new member
  • Participate in a club activity or project
  • Share your Optimist story

By completing those three easy steps, you will make a difference!

It has been said that every time we bring a new member into our Optimist club, we serve an additional 35 children. Just imagine, if only 10% of the Optimist members in Illinois sponsored one new member, we’d be helping over 4,800 more children.

I challenge you to be the best Optimist you can be and to remain committed to making a difference to the kids and your community. Together, we can change the world – let’s make it happen!

– Sandi Schmidt, Illinois Optimist Governor