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Rotary Happenings: Martin steps down as club president, passing gavel to Danner

July 18, 2018
Island Reporter, Captiva Current, Sanibel-Captiva Islander

On June 30, the 2017-2018 year for the Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Club closed with the new 2018-2018 year starting on July 1. Amazing how time flies. It was a great year for the club - hugs and thanks to our outgoing President Holli Martin. Now the club is looking forward to another great year under the leadership of our new President John Danner.

It was only fitting that at our last meeting of Martin's tenure, we dedicated the meeting to her favorite program highlighting Rotarians and learning more about their professional careers and their pathway to those professions. But I have to stop here and make a confession, she was not at this meeting. Martin was having fun - I hope - on a much-needed vacation. Danner was manning the gavel and kept things moving so we could end the meeting on time.

Rotarian Bill Letendre, classification consultant pharmacist. Joined his original Rotary club in Derry, New Hampshire, in 1975, then joined the San-Cap club in 1984. He served as president from 1987-1988 before moving to Texas. He returned to Sanibel in 2017 and was reinstated at the island club.

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Letendre's career as a pharmacist and business entrepreneur provided him with ventures in the both the pharmaceutical business and real estate development. It was not long after graduating from the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy in 1970 that he bought his first pharmacy at the young age of 26. That first purchase was only the beginning, Letendre went on to own a dozen pharmacies and infusion pharmacies, and he invested in commercial real estate projects with a focus on medical office space in New Hampshire. In 1984, Letendre was ready for a change. He sold his pharmacy businesses and moved his family to Sanibel, thinking he was retiring.

Well, as the saying goes, you cannot keep a good man down. Once again, he saw an opportunity to get into the real estate business on Sanibel and in Fort Myers. Commercial real estate development was his forte, but Letendre also saw an opportunity to jump into the residential real estate market and bought 28 acres of property along Winkler Road in Fort Myers and developed the area called King Lear-Winkler Estates. He and a partner also developed Summerlin Square and built a walk-in clinic on the property. In Letendre's business portfolio, he had walk-in medical and dental clinics and health clubs in Florida and New Hampshire.

There was a lot going on for Letendre at this time, but once again the wind changed direction and he was drawn to a new opportunity in Texas. The opportunity was to join the Professional Compounding Centers of America, a supplier of pharmaceutical compounding medicines and education and consulting for independent pharmacies. The traditional role of compounding pharmacies is to make drugs prescribed by doctors for specific patients - humans and animals with needs that cannot be met by commercially available pharmacies. PCCA serves approximately 4,000 independent community pharmacists throughout the United States, Canada, Australia and other countries around the world.

So, in 1992, Letendre and his family moved to Sugar Land, Texas. Somehow, he also made time to go back to school at the University of Texas' College of Pharmacy and receive his MBA from the University of Phoenix in 1998. He works on the management mentoring side of the business, personalizing solutions for good business and practical decision making. Letendre serves as vice president of PCCA and is in his 14th year of management coaching for the company.

In 2016-17, he took the opportunity to move, once again, to Sanibel. He thought he might be slowing down on the business side, or was he? Letendre and his family - wife, Lise, and son and daughter-in-law, Geoffrey and Flavia - invested in the Blue Giraffe Restaurant in 2016. Geoffrey had moved off Sanibel for a good number of years too, but he has always considered himself a hometown boy. His passion was always in the kitchen. He is a graduate of the California Culinary Academy and served in restaurant kitchens across the country. When his dad called him to join him in the new business venture running the Blue Giraffe, Geoffrey was all in.

Letendre rejoined the island Rotary Club in 2017 and we are glad to have him back.

I will be playing catch up with the Rotary Happenings column for the next few weeks - just too much to write about. You can look forward to another classification post on Rotarian Clark Rambo and news from the top on the Rotary International global motto for 2018-2019, "Be the Inspiration." Danner also outlined the club's goals for the year, which I will write about in an upcoming column.

For information about the Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Club, visit sanibelrotary.org or www.facebook.com/sancaprotary. The club meets every Friday at 7 a.m. at the Dunes Golf and Tennis Club, at 949 Sand Castle Road, Sanibel; visitors are always welcome to attend.

 
 

 

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