Posted by Paul Perez on Nov 19, 2017
The Prior Lake Rotary Club recognizes three individuals, Joe Passafaro, Kendall Larson, and John Rose, as Honorary Paul Harris Fellows for their outstanding service in the Prior Lake community!
Community Members Recognized by Rotary
Rotary International recognizes November as The Rotary Foundation month. The Foundation is the engine that drives many of the projects and programs that help clubs do good in their communities and throughout the world. The Rotary Club of Prior Lake held their Foundation Banquet on November 9, at Mystic Lake Casino Hotel to celebrate.
Besides celebrating The Foundation and the club’s giving, the club annually recognizes individuals from the Prior Lake community (non-Rotarians) that epitomize Rotary’s motto Service Above Success. Specifically, the club gives out Honorary Paul Harris Fellows. Paul Harris, the award’s namesake, was the founder of Rotary back in 1905. Honorees this year were April and Joe Passafaro, Kendall Larson, and John Rose.
April and Joe Passafaro have been active members of the community for years.  They are well known for their pottery studio and have used that talent to benefit others.  Each of the last two years they and their two adult sons have made and donated over 400 soup bowls for the joint “Fill the Bowl” fundraiser benefiting the Prior Lake Optimist Foundation and the local non-profit Reaching Our Community’s Kids. 
A concept called Student Lead Clubs and Organizations grew out of a Continuous Improvement Plan adopted by the school district.  One of the activities that fell under this category was Robotics.  Joe and April embraced the challenge to get this program up and running. Rather than have a small group of quietly involved students in the project, Joe set out to make this a WOW experience.  He set up a club with specific tasks so all students could develop leadership skills. King Tec became their name and robots are their game pieces.  Joe, with April always helping behind the scenes, coached a team that won tournaments their first year.
Kendall Larson has been actively involved in Prior Lake Rotary’s Lakefront Music Fest event from the beginning. He has served in a variety of leadership roles including Security, Stage, Talent Logistics, and Event Production. He volunteers long hours during the event and is often one of the first to arrive in the morning and one of the last to leave. Kendall’s service goes beyond the Music Fest. He served on the City of Prior Parks Advisory Committee from 2006-2015, and is a past board member of the River Valley YMCA.
John Rose has been instrumental in making Prior Lake Rotary’s Lakefront Music Fest a huge success.  Over the past 5 years, John has been on-sight for the Music Fest from early Thursday morning until Monday afternoon.  He has been involved in the major set-up, event operations, and final tear-down, working nearly 60 hours each year so the event goes off without a hitch.  John has also been instrumental in the acquisition and the growing relationship with one of our key corporate sponsors.  John goes about his work without seeking accolades.  He is a humble man who truly places “Service Above Self.”
All honorees were present, along with family members, and were given Paul Harris Fellow pins and certificates to commemorate their honors.