Las Vegas Southwest Rotary Newsletter

August 24, 2015

August 31 Program


Pat Skorkowsky

Superintendent, Clark County School District

For the past 25 years, Pat Skorkowsky has served the students, parents, and community of Clark County as a teacher, site based and central office administrator, and now, as superintendent.

Skorkowsky began his career as a first-grade teacher at C. C. Ronnow Elementary School in August 1988. As recent college graduate, Skorkowsky had never been to Las Vegas before he flew into town for his first teaching job on a Sunday night, and started teaching the very next day. He also taught first and fifth grades at Kirk L. Adams Elementary School.

It was in the classroom where Skorkowsky developed his philosophy for teaching that drives the District today: “Every student in every classroom, without exceptions, without excuses.”

After achieving success in the classroom, Skorkowsky moved up the administrative ranks, where he served as assistant principal at Dorothy Eisenberg Elementary School, Marc Kahre Elementary School, and Walter Bracken Elementary School. He also served as principal of Doris French Elementary School, Thurman White Middle School, and was selected as the principal to open Del E. Webb Middle School.

Skorkowsky was promoted to academic manager in 2006, where he supervised the work of more than 100 schools. In August 2012, he was tapped as the District’s deputy superintendent, responsible for overseeing the District’s academic reform efforts as well as operational change. Rising through the ranks of the Clark County School District gave Skorkowsky a unique perspective on the challenges and opportunities facing the District.

In June 2013, Skorkowsky was named superintendent of the nation’s fifth-largest school district, with more than 315,000 students, 38,000 employees, and 357 schools and several satellite offices.

Skorkowsky worked with the Board of Trustees to outline six goals linked to the district's "Pledge of Achievement" action plan: increasing third-grade literacy, decreasing achievement gaps, increasing the graduation rate, increasing family engagement, increasing student safety and happiness, and increasing participation in both career and technical education, and Advanced Placement classes.

Skorkowsky grew up in a small town in central Oklahoma. He received his associate’s degree in Science from St. Gregory’s University in Oklahoma, a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Oklahoma State University, and a master’s degree in Educational Administration from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. In November, 2013, Skorkowsky was named the UNLV Alumni of the Year for the College of Education.

Upcoming Speakers:

September 7: Dark (Labor Day)

September 14: Jon Ralston, political commentator and TV Host

September 21: Jack Woodcock, Las Vegas Real Estate Expert

September 28: Dana Bennett, President, Nevada Mining Association


Meeting Happenings

Invocation: Keith Thomas; Photos: Ted Henderson; Mr. Mic: Bruce Pope; Newsletter: Elaine Vinson/Clinton Pope; Raffle Winner: Carryover

Guests: Paul Charron, guest of Shawn Callahan



Foundation Board of Directors: Mitchell Horst placed current Foundation Board Members lists at each of the tables. He asked if anyone wanted to join the board beyond the names provided. No one volunteered.

Teen Leadership Camp: Tom Martin announced that we need to find one more 8th grad boy for Teen Leadership Camp. Please contact Tom if you have a candidate.

Boys and Girls Club of Las Vegas "Boys Night Out": Aric Graham announced the Club will be again participating in "Boys Night Out" on October 15 from 6 to 9 p.m. If you would like to participate, please see Aric.

Tailgate and Football Squares: Eric Colvin announced that the Club will be selecting a tailgate date and also began selling squares in our inaugural NFL football square contest which will be conducted throughout the season with the proceeds going to the Club's scholarship fund. Each square is $100 for the season. If you are interested in attending the tailgate or buying a football square, please contact Eric.

Pars for Polio: Jack Woodcock reported back on Pars for Polio where he Bryan Dzeidzaik and Shawn Callahan golfed on behalf of the Club to raise money for Polio eradication.

Text-a-thon: Chris Publow was the target of this week's text-a-thon.


Video killed the radio star . . . Shawn Callahan was asked about his recent radio interview, of which he apparently has become quite the golf celebrity in recent months. He was then asked to pull off his "new member" sticker and was commended for his consistent event attendance.

Newbie no more . . . Adam Bowler was asked to remove his new member sticker as well.

Name the Rotarian . . . Rich Bowler was asked about who in the Club was a lithographer and iron worker, loves any book/movie by David McCollough and loves to travel to Morocco. He couldn't guess the correct person which was Tom Martin. He was recognized $50

Name the Rotarian (Part II)  . . . Tom Martin was asked if he new which Club member's best vacation spot is Spain or Italy, loves Cusler movies, wishful occupation is "everything" and comes from Chicago. Tom was recognized $50 when he failed to guess Fred Fukumoto.

Gifts for the President:

Hank Falstad gave a present from Oklahoma City and tom presented a banner from a friend from Florida. Fred Fukumoto gave a $1 playing chip

Guest Speaker:

Ruth and Cynthia Col

Speaking in person and on Skype from Peru, Ruth and Cynthia spoke to the Club about their lives dedicated to helping people in Peru through various activities including providing students supplies. Where they go there are no roads and all travel is by boat. They heavily rely on donors from the United States to fund their efforts and make providing books a priority as there are no libraries. They work on clean water programs and their love of the rain forest has them also dedicated to preserving the culture, animals and trees throughout Peru. They randomly selected Karen and Aric to receive necklaces.


Pass it on...

We encourage you to share this newsletter with your family, friends and co-workers or anyone whom you feel might be interested in Rotary and joining an organization dedicated to building a better world.

Club meetings are Monday's from 12:00pm - 1:30pm at Lawry’s The Prime Rib located at 4043 Howard Hughes Pkwy, Las Vegas, NV 89169. Please check the Club’s website for meeting times and events at

Yours in Rotary Service,

Mitchell Horst
President 2015-2016