Mateus was Carl and Judy Tott's GRSP student in 1996 when Carl was Americus
Rotary President. Carolina married their son Glenn a number of years later. In
Carolina's text to Carl following a group chat with her GRSP class, she stated
"After the situation in DC on Wednesday [January 6, 2021], the GRSP class
of 1996-97 decided to write a letter to GRSP headquarters mentioning our love
and deep belief in US democracy and thanking the program for shaping us to be
ambassadors of peace as we moved into our adult lives. After sending the
letter, many other GRSP classes joined in signing it and we have since received
warm responses from Rotarians." Carolina shared the information and
following letter with Carl:
7th of January, 2021
Dear Georgia Rotarians and Our Beloved Host Families,
students, we love Georgia and it will always have a special place in our
hearts. Through this program, we have embraced the values of diversity,
integrity, peace and understanding among nations and people, respect for
different perspectives, and collaboration towards shared goals and values.
We, as members of the GRSP Alumni, were deeply shocked and
saddened with what took place in Capitol Hill yesterday. Nonetheless, we are
relieved that democracy has prevailed and that Georgia has taken center stage
in the national debate.
Independent of anyone's personal political opinion, we are
saddened by the deep division we have seen in the United States.
Georgia Rotarians showed to us how they welcome diversity and
the move towards peace from the founding of the program in the aftermath of the
We are only ambassadors to the lessons of peace and
understanding we learned in Georgia from you.
We have had challenging and successful careers, and raised happy,
diverse and open families since we left your wonderful state. We have always
carried the message that peace is possible. In these divisive times, we would
like to offer our assistance if needed. We would be happy for instance to have
an event to update you on how we are and how our year in your state made us
more open, accepting, and loving; which is what the world needs.
We are confident and counting on you to continue to be the
beacon and guiding light of unity and respect, and the leaders of democracy,
integrity, law and order for Georgia and the world.
Our thoughts are with you. Georgia is always on our minds.
Sincerely, GRSP Alumni 1996-97
Seda Tokcan (from Turkey, living in France) Roberto Futuro (from
Brazil, living in Crete) Meike Leisink (from The Netherlands) Peter Makszin
(from Hungary living in Qatar) Maria Andreeva (from Russia) Olga Balezina (from
Russia) Iwona Dost-Gorecka (formerly Gorecka) (from Poland, living in The
Netherlands) Anna Marie Balle (formerly de Vera), (from the Philippines, based
in Germany) Carolina Mateus (from Colombia, living in the US) Luciana Cury
(from Brazil) Misja De Schepper (from Belgium) Simen Olstad (from Norway) Jan
Jaap Badon (from The Netherlands) Jessica Holmquist (formerly Eriksson), (from
Sweden) Dr. Adamantia Moschou (former Skarlatou), (from Greece) Ieva Smilgaine
(from Latvia, living in Spain) Cecilia Freaza, (from Argentina in London,UK)
Juliana Polastri (from Argentina, living in London, UK). Eric Larsson, from
Sweden in London Jenny Wollin (former Nilsson), (from Sweden) Marlena Hartfiel
(from Germany) Lakshmi Nidamarthi (from India) Raul Marques (from El Salvador,
living in Miami)