Program History

CDS Partner Business Visit

The CDS program was initiated in the 2008-2009 school year following an inquiry by the Rotarians as to how they could be of help in the educational process by providing insights to students about their potential career choices. Mr. Jack Parker, Superintendent of RUSD at that time, was very supportive of the process to develop this CDS program format and asked several central office RUSD administrators as well as staff members of McKinley Middle School to get involved in working out the details. From insights gained in a pilot project, the mechanics of conducting CDS projects were worked out, and a full schedule of projects were set up in subsequent school years.

Over the years, the CDS program has expanded. More middle schools within Racine Unified School District have been added: Gilmore, Jerstad-Agerholm, Mitchell, REAL School, Starbuck, and Walden. The Kiwanis Club of West Racine was brought into the program as a partner for Walden Middle School. Further expansion occurred with the start-up of a CDS program at the Racine YMCA for middle school students in the Young Leaders Academy.

Partners in Career Education

CDS Program Leaders

Rotarians in Racine have developed an effective partnership with the Racine Unified School District for coordinating the CDS program. Since its inception, the CDS program has steadily expanded its scope in order to provide opportunities for an increasing number of young people to participate in this realistic career education experience. The ideals of Rotary support the CDS program through commitment to vocational service and to opportunities for young people.

Racine Unified School District (RUSD)

With approximately 21,000 students, the Racine Unified School District is the fourth largest school district in the state of Wisconsin. Racine Unified features rigorous academics and strong programming in the fine arts, foreign language, school-to-career, physical education, technology, and other electives. As a district, we are proud of the success that we create for all of the students we serve, and proud of our mission to: Educate every student to succeed.

Website  -

RUSD - Racine Unified School District

Rotary International

Rotary's main objective is service - in the community, in the workplace, and around the globe. The 1.2 million Rotarians who make up more than 34,000 Rotary clubs in nearly every country in the world share a dedication to the ideal of Service Above Self. Rotary clubs are open to people of all cultures and ethnicities and are not affiliated with any political or religious organizations.

Website -

Rotary International

Racine Founder's Rotary Club

The Racine Founder's Rotary Club was chartered on April 19, 1985. The charter date is significant in that Paul P. Harris, founder of Rotary International, was born in Racine on April 19, 1868.

The club has absorbed members of the West Racine Rotary Club and the Rotary Club of Racine when these two Rotary clubs made the decision to no longer function. Rotarians have provided a wide range of service activities to the Racine community since the Rotary Club of Racine was chartered in 1917.

The Racine Founder's Rotary Club's mission is to provide service to the local and international communities with a focus on youth, while promoting integrity and generosity through fun and active fellowship of members.

Racine Founder's Rotary Club

CDS Program Reach

The following businesses, government agencies, and non-profit organizations have generously supported the CDS program over the years by serving as Host Organizations: