Circle K International also fundraises for various causes. The major initiative is: “Focusing on the Future: Children” which aims to help children of ages six to thirteen. In 2007, Circle K partnered with the U.S. fund to help raise $500,000 for UNICEF in efforts to help children around the world who do not have access to clean drinking water. This fund raising initiative is called: Saving Lives – The Six Cents Initiative. It got its name from: “the cost to purchase one pack of rehydration salts to purify a day’s worth of drinking water”. These efforts to raise money help raise awareness while encouraging others to do more and help out the community.
The Kiwanis International Board of Trustees accepted a proposal to allow the establishment of Circle K Districts on February 22, 1957. The very first Circle K District to be officially recognized was the Texas-Oklahoma District. The second Circle K District was Kentucky-Tennessee which was closely followed by Michigan. Four more Districts were added in the 1957-58 administrative year: Missouri-Arkansas, California-Nevada-Hawaii, Ohio, and Alabama.
One of the most dramatic episodes in the history of Circle K came in 1971, when the delegates at the International Convention voted to allow women into the organization. The move was initially met with resistance by Kiwanis, which must approve all changes to the Circle K governing documents. After nearly two years of debate, the Kiwanis International Board of Trustees approved the change on February 6th, 1973 and Circle K became the first co-ed organization in the Kiwanis Family. In 1984, Susan E. McClernon was elected the first female International President of Circle K International.
In 1975, Gregory Faulkner was elected to the position of International President. Faulkner was the first African-American International President. Faulkner's election and the admission of female members was symbolic of the new level of maturity and responsibility Circle K International had assumed over 20 years of service, growth and development.
At the International Convention in 1987, the delegates approved the use of the initials CKI as an official name of the organization. That same year, Kiwanis International voted to allow women into Kiwanis clubs. Key Club had gone co-ed in 1977.
As of the end of 2005, membership consisted of over 13,250 college students in 17 nations around the world. Most of the Circle K membership currently resides in North America, in 30 Districts recognized by Kiwanis International. Twenty-seven districts are entirely within the United States, while three districts are international representing Canada and the Caribbean. These three Districts are the Pacific Northwest (made up of Oregon, Idaho, Washington, and the Canadian provinces of British Columbia and the Yukon), Western Canada (Alberta and Manitoba), and Eastern Canada and the Caribbean. Districts-in-Formation exist in Eastern Canada, Central and South America, Australia, and the Pacific Rim.
Circle K International celebrated its 50th anniversary at the 2005 International Convention in Greensboro, North Carolina. The International Convention's theme was, "CKI's 50th Anniversary: 50 Never Looked So Good".
Membership dues vary by district. Dues cover one year of membership.
The 2008-09 International Board:
International President: Kristen Reed (New York District)
International Vice-President: Ricardo Torres (Pennsylvania District)
Sub-Region A: Tracy Meyer (Pacific Northwest District)
Districts: Montana, Pacific Northwest, Utah-Idaho, Western Canada
Sarah Foley (Southwest District)
Districts: California-Nevada-Hawaii, Rocky Mountain, Southwest
JJ Sadler (Illinois-Eastern Iowa District)
Districts: Illinois-Eastern Iowa, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota-Dakotas, Wisconsin Upper-Michigan
Klint Neal (Texas-Oklahoma District)
Districts: Kansas, Louisiana-Mississippi-West Tennessee, Missouri-Arkansas, Nebraska-Iowa, Texas-Oklahoma
Sub-Region E: Christa Fry (West Virginia District)
Districts: Kentucky-Tennessee, Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia
Eric Hotchkiss (New York District)
Districts: Capital, New England, New Jersey, New York
Sub-Region G: Kathryn Geiger (Carolinas District)
Districts: Alabama, Carolinas, Eastern Canada & Caribbean, Florida, Georgia
International Committee Chairs serve Circle K International by being experts in a particular field and running committees to complete tasks that directly affects the membership.
International Committee Chairs
Executive Committee: Kristen Reed
Membership Development & Benefits: Klint Neal
Marketing and Kiwanis Family Relations: Christa Fry
Service: Kathryn Geiger
District Boards provide support and guidance to the Circle K clubs within their geographical area. All districts are headed by a Governor, who oversees the District Board members that usually consist of a District Secretary, District Treasurer, District Bulletin Editor, and Lt. Governors. Several Districts combine two District positions into a District Secretary/Treasurer. District Conventions are held every year (in February or March depending on the District) for member education, club officer training, and election of the District Board. Districts are charged with implementing International policies within their represented clubs. All District Boards are responsible for club building, Kiwanis Family relations, laws and regulations, membership retention/education, and planning District events for the membership (e.g., District Convention).
Club Boards (also known as club officers or club Executive Boards) are an important aspect of CKI, second only to the club members, as they are the elected leaders who work within their community. Club Boards work with their District Boards on membership recruitment strategies, Kiwanis Family projects, membership retention and education, and social events. Also, Club Boards plan community service projects and social events for their members. CKI recommends all clubs to elect their new Club Boards before their District Convention.
At ICON 2006 in Boston, discussion of the proposed regionalization plans and other structure changes led the delegates to the longest house of delegates session in the history of the organization.
At ICON 2007 in Portland, several amendments failed. These included a new club dues structure, the elimination of the offices of International President and Vice-President, and measures allowing clubs outside of the district structure.
At ICON 2008 in Denver, the House of Delegates made the decision to change the financial structure of the organization from dues to a fee system. This is still pending Kiwanis approval today. The delegates also elected Kristen Reed from the New York District as the youngest International President to ever serve the organization. Reed was 19 years old and had previously served as an International Representative on the inaugural Representative Board to Sub-region F.
Eastern Canada and the Caribbeans