Bismarck Optimist Club
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2020-21 Board of Directors:
President: Lacey Fercho
Vice President: Angil Wanner-Koper
Secretary: Jillian Lagasse
Treasurer: Christa Schwartzenberger
Past President: Christy Cameron
Director: Julie Jeske
Director: Derek Lockrem
Director: Jerry Haas 
Director: Kyle Debertin
Director: Sylvia Burgess
Director: Ashley Backsen

Board member elections are held in September and members serve a two year term, beginning October 1st annually.  

Past Presidents:  Christy Cameron (2019-20); Dennis Kraft (2018-19); Amanda Bakkedahl (2017-18); Jerry Haas (2016-17); Krista Fremming (2015-16); Kelly Gunsch (2014-15); Tonya Holmstrom (2013-14); Kristi Kraft (2012-2013); Daryl Kerzman (2011-2012); Tom Miller (2010-2011); Ben Ehreth (2009-2010); 

2020 "Outstanding Optimist of the Year"
Christy Cameron

2019 "Outstanding Optimist of the Year"
Lacey Fercho

Founded: July 20, 1971
Founding members still in our club:

* Duane Bentz
* Jack Neumann
* Mert Johnsrud

Weekly meeting: Tuesdays at noon, 
at the ND Heritage Center in Bismarck, ND

Jerry Haas, Past-President of the Optimist Club of Bismarck was recently recognized at the Dakotas-Manitoba-Minnesota District Meeting as the Roger L. Haas Memorial Optimist of the Year award recipient. Jerry was a very active leader with recruiting several new members to the club and also took the lead on a few new projects. Jerry also helped initiate a new event, the club’s Easter Egg Hunt which took place on the ND Capitol Grounds. He helped increase community participation in the club’s Avenue of Flags and also led the efforts to create a Pay-it-Forward program for the Optimist Gift Wrap fundraising project.

Jerry continues to lead by example, helping others to share in the success and Brings Out the Best in Youth, the Community and Ourselves. Jerry truly displays the Optimist Creed saying of “To make all your friends feel that there is something in them.” He looks for the positive in people and helps to make them realize what they are capable of doing.