Ex-Bayport mayor Kosmo replaces McKeown as St. Paul Rotary president
ST. PAUL — Two St. Croix Valley residents exchanged places as leader of the Rotary Club of St. Paul during ceremonies in downtown St. Paul Tuesday.
Retiring club President Dan McKeown of Stillwater passed the president’s gavel to former Bayport Mayor Jim Kosmo.
The Rotary Club of St. Paul was the 10th club created in 1910. The organization today has more than 34,000 clubs in almost every country around the world.
McKeown is president of Specialty Manufacturing Co. Kosmo and his wife, Shelley, sold their share in the Padelford Riverboat Co. in 2010 in an attempt at retirement. In addition to serving as president of St. Paul Rotary, Kosmo wrote the best-selling book, “Still Standing: The Story of SGG John Kriesel,” and is working on several other books.
Kosmo serves on the Croixdale board of directors, is member of the Senior Advisory Task Force of the Minnesota Adjutant General, and recently founded Authors Advocates, LLC.
The Kosmos’ longtime friends, Jim and Jayne Bradshaw of Stillwater, were among more than 100 participants in the Rotary Changing of the Guard Ceremony. Bradshaw, owner of Bradshaw Funeral Homes, is member of the Stillwater Rotary Club and past governor of the Wisconsin-Minnesota Rotary District 5960.
“Rotary is a force of St. Paul community leaders joining hands with 1.2 million Rotarians in nearly every country of the world to changes lives for good,” Kosmo said. He then presented a $20,000 four-year scholarship to Aonga Shalita, a recent graduate of Highland Park High School, who will study bio-chemistry at Macalester College. The scholarship is the third one presented by St. Paul Rotary as part of the club’s 100th Anniversary Campaign that created a permanent endowment for the annual scholarships.
The club also purchase a semi-trailer for the Feed My Starving Children organization that has enabled FMSC to pack 32 million meals throughout the country, enough to feed 86,864 children for an entire year.
Looking ahead, Kosmo said St. Paul Rotary will work with Minneapolis Rotary and major Twin Cities corporations to create a “Values Day” conference stressing business ethics and the Rotary 4-Way Test of “things we think, say and do.”
Outgoing St. Paul Rotary Club President Dan McKeown, left, with new St. Paul Rotary president Jim Kosmo and Jim Bradshaw, owner of Bradshaw Funeral Homes following ceremonies Tuesday in St. Paul that saw Kosmo, a former Bayport mayor and best-selling author, take over as St. Paul Rotary president. (Submitted photo)