Keynote Speakers

Each year, we feature Rotary International leaders and other special guests as our keynote speakers. They share with us tools for personal growth; they challenge and inspire us; they bring to us a moment of humor.

For our 2021 event, the keynote speakers are being confirmed and will soon be posted. Our online event arrangements are requiring a bit more time to complete.

For our 2020 event, the four keynote speakers were:

Portrait of Clemson Turregano

Clemson Turregano

Managing Director, Global Portfolio, Center for Creative Leadership

Clemson leads a global team responsible for the development, design, integration and delivery of CCL's Leadership Program and Experience Portfolio. Clemson's broad span of clients includes the telecommunications, banking, manufacturing industries, in addition to all levels of government and universities. Benefitting from his leadership develolpment and coaching programs are commercial leaders, elected and appointed senior government officials, and leaders across the spectrum of foreign relations, defense, education, intelligence, and humanitarian aid.

Prior to joining CCL, Clemson served over 24 years in the US Army, serving in capacities from infantry soldier to West Point Professor to Armor Battalion Commander. A practicing scholar, he has won awards for teaching strategic leadership to senior government and corporate officials.

Clemson's undergraduate degree is from The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina. He earned an MA in Political Science, MPA, and Doctorate from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. He also earned a MA in Security and Strategy from the US Army War College in Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania

Portrait of Dean Rohrs

Dean Rohrs

Past Vice President, Rotary International

Dean, her husband Rhino, and their three children emigrated to Canada from South Africa 26 years ago. Dean grew up in Zambia and after marrying Rhino lived in Malawi, Namibia, and South Africa. Dean joined Rotary in South Africa in 1989. On arriving in Vancouver both Dean and Rhino joined the Rotary Club of West Vancouver and at present are members of the Rotary Club of Langley Central.

Dean has had a varied career from the early days of being an Operating Room Nurse on Professor Christiaan Barnard's first heart transplant team to running a Nursery School in Malawi. Together with Rhino they own and manage a company that is involved in soil stabilization during road construction.

Most recently, Dean has served Rotary as Vice-President 2016-2018. Some of her previous assignments include: 17 years of Youth Exchange in both District 9300 and 5040, District 5040 GSE Chair, GSE Team Leader to New Zealand, District Governor 2007-2008, Regional Rotary International Membership Coordinator, and Regional Rotary Foundation Coordinator.

Portrait of Jean Irwin

Jean Irwin Hatfield

Ambassadorial Scholar Alumnus, District 6400

Jean Irwin Hatfield was an Ambassadorial Scholar (what we'd call today a Global Scholar) in the 7th year of her career as a teacher of the deaf. She was frustrated with the low reading level of her students. At that time, 1989, it was accepted that the deaf could not typically read better than a 4th Grade level graduating from high school.

The Rotary scholarship she received allowed her to do research with a team in Nottingham England who looked at the reading and language levels from a different perspective when a professor of psycholinguistics was working on artificial intelligence. He was studying deaf language in comparison with the language of a computer - computers being "deaf to language" producing similar language to deaf humans.

This research lead to techniques in Reading that helped Jean have a whole new approach to teaching the deaf to read. Upon returning to her job, her students began breaking that 4th grade reading barrier. She retired in 2008, but due to a critical shortage of teachers of the deaf returned to work in Woodland, Ca in 2017 where she uses these same techniques with middle and HS aged children.

She has spoken to over 275 conferences for both Rotarians and teachers of the deaf about what she learned as an Ambassadorial Scholar. In 2009, she received the "Service Above Self" award from Rotary International. Jean is the mother of Kent, age 21 who is a University student in Reno, and daughter Katy 26, who is an actress in New York CIty. Jean married David Hatfield in June of 2010 and part of their honeymoon was at the International Convention in Montreal, Canada. Dave is quickly getting up to speed on life as a Rotary spouse.

Portrait of David Forward

David Forward

Rotarian and Author

David was born and educated in England and became a Rotarian in 1978 shortly after moving to the United States. He will be familiar to many Rotarians through Frank Talk, the fastest selling book in Rotary history as well as the author of the official history book of Rotary, A Century of Service.

David's passion is volunteerism, and has initiated and led humanitarian work trips across America and to the Dominican Republic and Beirut. He has served his church as deacon, elder, and mission committee chairman. As a Rotarian for 39 years, he served three times as club president, and has been awarded the Citation for Meritorious Service. He served his district as governor 2015-2016 and 2016-2017. David and Chris are Rotary Foundation Major Donors and live in Medford, New Jersey.

In 1991, David founded International Children's Aid Foundation, an all-volunteer foundation that has its own orphanage, dental and medical clinics in Romania and has taught hundreds of abandoned children early childhood education, vocational training and life skills. David hosts several groups of volunteers each year who go to Romania. He has now visited Romania 70 times.