President's Column

Rob Whitcomb, is our Club President for the 2019-2020 Optimist year. 

As President of the Clarkston Optimist Club I am extremely excited to head the Club into a 34th year.

Also joining with my fellow Optimist in celebrating the 101st year of Optimist International. 

Optimist Clubs are dedicated to “Bringing out the Best in Kids.”  The Clarkston Optimists exemplify this motto through numerous activities throughout our community.  I believe it is fair to say that you will find an Optimist involved in just about every project, event, and community service program in the Clarkston area. 

I have personally resided in Clarkston, with my wife Meg, since 1978.  Our son, Mark Whitcomb attended Clarkston schools.  I have been a financial advisor for more than 25 years.  currently affiliated with LPL Financial, maintaining an office in Clarkston.  My past experience includes teaching financial planning courses through adult education and college programs.

Previously I was the President of the Clarkston Area Lions Club, the Independence Township Investment Committee and the Clarkston Chamber’s Concert in the Park committee.  I am a founding member of the Independence Day Parade Committee.   One of my favorite hobby’s is ballroom dancing.  As a dance enthusiast I assisted in teaching dance through Special Olympics to children with disabilities. 

Optimist News

Essay ContestTopic for the 2019-20 school year is: "Is Optimism the Key to Achieving the Dreams you iMagine?"
Essay contest is open to students from grades 6-12, who attend Clarkston Schools or Everest Academy. All rules for the written essay are clearly stated on the Essay Application.
Here is a link to the Essay Application:
Deadline to return the essay is January 21, 2020.
Essays can be turned into the school counseling offices or to Tracy Bedford at the Clarkston Independence District Library.
From the Optimist International website:
"The Essay Contest is sponsored by Optimist International to give young people the opportunity to write about their own opinions regarding the world in which they live. The approach can encompass a young person's personal experience, the experience of their country or a more historical perspective. In additional to developing skills for written expression, participants also have the opportunity to win a college scholarship! Club winners advance to the District contest to compete for a $2,500 college scholarship. The District-Level scholarships are funded by the Optimist International Foundations."
Any questions can be directed to Tracy Beford, who can reached at or 248-625-2212.
Grant Application
Click here, for grant application. Please complete the form, scan and email to
Oratorical Contest
Topic for the 2019-20 school year is: “Just iMagine a World without Boundaries”.  Please see the Oratorical Rules and complete the Application. Deadline for entries is Thursday, March 19th, 2020.
Optimist Club YouTube Channel
Click here, to view and watch Clarkston Optimist activities and programs happening right here in Clarkston.
Service for the Community
Click here, to view our Independence Televison spotlight video on the Clarkston Optimist Club.
"A Small Town in Michigan" - Podcast
Turn up your speakers, click here and listen to the latest in Alan Partington's creative Podcast Series, featuring local community members.

Upcoming Programs

Wednesday morning Membership Meetings are held at the Clarkston United Methodist Church, 7:30am

November 20th, 2019 - General RV will present and bring an RV to the Church parking lot to view following the meeting.

November 27th, 2019 -  Everyone meet at Neiman's Market Cafe.

December 4th, 2019 - Clarkston High School Madrigal Choir will sing to us.  This is fantastic annual tradition.

December 11th, 2019 - Possibly Joyce Pennycoff and Jamie Klos will bring a "PAWS" presentation to us (this is pending).

December 18th, 2019 - The True Meaning of Christmas presentation. Speaker TBD.

December 25th, 2019 - Christmas Day, no meeting.  Merry Christmas!