Speaker Date Topic
Judge Lee Yeakel (Retired) Jun 20, 2024 12:00 PM
IN-PERSON & ZOOM MEETING : Swearing in of new Officers and Club Assembly
IN-PERSON & ZOOM MEETING : Swearing in of new Officers and Club Assembly

Retired Judge Lee Yeakel will lead the installation of the Rotary Club of West Austin Officers for the Rotary year 2024-2025.  Outgoing President Angela Smith will share a recap of her year as Club President.  Incoming President Bruce Cardwell will share his vision for our Club and the objectives he is setting forth.


Judge Lee Yeakel (Retired):

Lee Yeakel was a United States District Judge for the Western District of Texas. He was nominated by President George W. Bush and confirmed by the United States Senate in 2003.
Before becoming a federal judge, he served as Chief Justice and Justice of Texas’s Third Court of Appeals and was in private practice in Austin, where he has spent his entire legal career. He received his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Texas at Austin and a Master of Laws degree from the University of Virginia. The Texas Bar Foundation awarded him the 2012 Samuel J. Pessara Outstanding Jurist Award. The University of Texas Law School’s Review of Litigation named him the 2014 Outstanding Texas Jurist. He is a sustaining life fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation, a life fellow of the American Bar Foundation, and a member of the American Law Institute.
The Honorable Lee Yeakel Intellectual Property American Inn of Court is named in his honor. He presently serves as a Texas commissioner to the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws. Recently he served as a member of the United States delegation to the Hague Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters and was a signer for the United States of the treaty that resulted from the convention.
Yeakel is a former president of the Rotary Club of Austin. He and his wife Anne have two children and three grandchildren.
NO MEETING Jun 27, 2024 12:00 PM

There is no meeting

NO MEETING Jul 04, 2024 12:00 PM

There is no meeting due to the US Independence Day Holiday!

Mike O'Krent Jul 11, 2024 12:00 PM
IN-PERSON & ZOOM MEETING: Bridging the Political Divide through Conversation
IN-PERSON & ZOOM MEETING: Bridging the Political Divide through Conversation
Bridging the Political Divide through Conversation..
Using his experience interviewing Holocaust survivors and hundreds of moms, dads, grandmas and grandpas, Mike shares with you some of the lessons he's learned to gain a trust that results in better conversations and, thus, better relationships with people. You'll walk .way from his talk with tools you can apply immediately.

About Mike O'Krent:

Mike O'Krent is the founder of LifeStories Alive, LLC a business specializing in the making of personal history "legacy" videos for families , businesses and non-profit organizations.

In a life-changing experience, from 1996 through 2000 Mike interviewed Holocaust survivors for Steven Spielberg’s Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation, now the USC Shoah Foundation.  It was through that experience he discovered the significance and technique of recording the life stories of loved ones, which forms the basis for his LifeStories business.

Since founding the business in 2006, Mike has expanded its expertise beyond capturing personal histories for families to now include recording the histories of businesses and non-profit organizations. The professionally produced videos can be used externally to promote the organization or internally as a training tool for new employees/volunteers.


John Coffman Jul 18, 2024 12:00 PM
IN-PERSON & ZOOM MEETING : Living With Cancer
IN-PERSON & ZOOM MEETING : Living With Cancer


John Coffman will talk to the Club about Living with Cancer.


About John Coffman

Born in Indiana I got my BS in engineering from Purdue University.  My dream was not to be an engineer in an office but a builder of impressive projects.  My career brought me to Austin which has been our home base since 1984.  I was licensed as a Professional Engineer in Indiana and then in Texas when it became apparent we were going to be Texans for a while. 

Most of my career was spent with Hensel Phelps construction company, a Colorado based company with an Austin office since the late ‘70’s.  Hensel Phelps has a reputation for technical competence which allows them to pursue projects that scare everyone else away.  As a result, their niche isn’t geared toward any particular segment of the market as most companies are.  Because of that I was able to build high rise offices, hospitals, airports, trains, prisons, highways, embassies, high-tech cleanrooms, and restore a 70-year-old tunnel that was on the verge of collapse.  My jobs took me to Hawaii, South Africa, Europe, and all over the mainland US.  My two favorite projects are the 620 bridge over the Colorado River by Mansfield Dam and the US Embassy in Berlin Germany. 

My wife, Rayann, and I raised a son and daughter in Austin where they went all the way through Pflugerville schools from kindergarten through high school.  They each have two kids of their own and still live in north Austin.  My wife, both our kids and all our money went to UT.  A Boilermaker does not stand a chance in our house.