Who are the people behind Polaris?

Saturday, December 31, 2022

Team Polaris

The Polaris team

Our responsibilities:

The Polaris team is responsible for the development of the Polaris software product and for the support to the districts. The software engineering is done by Cloudtec AG.

The responsibility for operation of the Polaris systems is carried out by  Cloudtec AG and the responsibility for operation of  the infrastructure  is carried out by Metanet AG. Both work under contract with the ARM.

Our tasks:

  • Sustainable product development of the Polaris solution
  • Management of the product development cycle (new releases)
  • Coordination of third parties involved in the development and in the operations
  • Support to the DICOs in the districts that are using Polaris
  • Organization of the Assembly of the Polaris district representatives before each new release development phase.
  • Organization of annual meetings with the DICOs, DICOs deputies and district representatives in the particular countries.
  • Promotion of Polaris in other countries
  • Periodic reporting to the ARM and to the Assembly of district delegates Switzerland & Liechtenstein about Polaris status.

free photo by krakenimages on Unsplash

Jan Trnka, Product Manager


My professional background leads me to the firm belief that Rotary needs a new full-featured collaborative IT system available on any user device and in any language. My engagement rose over years from a CICO to DICO role, ending in the years 2019-2020 as a member of the Polaris team, in the role of the technical leader of that project. During this time, naturally Polaris became my passion.
Since 2022 I took over the role of a Product Manager. In that position I am planing and organizing the development of this unique software. Together with keeping in touch with the districts and with all involved parties it is a challenge that fills my life as a Rotarian.

I know I cannot do it right for all, but it makes me happy to do it right for many.

Olivier Gardiol, IT responsible MAR

ZThe Polaris father and mind behind all that!

In charge, since 2006, of the IT solutions for the clubs in his district then in Switzerland, rot. Olivier Gardiol took over, in 2018, the responsibility to run the Polaris project of a brand new system aiming to run the Rotary clubs and allow a modern communication in the Rotary community.

His function as Product Manager was taken over by rot.  Jan Trnka in 2022. Olivier remains in the Polaris Team, providing his support to his colleagues, and for the time being providing the proposals to the new districts interested by Polaris, and monitoring the budget.

Marion de Lattre-Wiesel, Team member


The relationship manager, spokesperson, communicator and moderator, editor, proofreader (and many more) ...  and female component in the team.

I am a self-taught computer nerd since childhood ... and have been involved in IT management and support since I joined Rotary.

My main asset is that I am not a computer professional (first an architect, then a mediator) and therefore I can explain computer processes in normal language, not geek!

I am very happy to have the opportunity to provide my skills and enthusiasm to the diffusion and use of the wonderful tool which is Polaris!

Philippe Schnyder, Team member

2Q==As IT security engineer and consultant, Rotarian and former Rotaractor who has been using computers for almost all his life, I have a strong technical background.

In 2014 I joined the national group of IT responsible for Rotary and Rotaract in Switzerland. Over the years I had the pleasure to accompany the evolution of the former system in what is Polaris today.

Since 2014 I have been covering many roles in the Rotarian IT team, including technical support and coordinating the development of the predecessor of Polaris.

Serge Dupont, promotion

9k=In 2019-2020, as Governor of the D1690, I was convinced - I still am - that our movement had to adapt to the economic, technical, societal, etc. evolutions of the world around us, otherwise it would wither and disappear. The choice of an efficient computer tool was part of this concern. We chose Polaris

It is a proven software package - twenty years of existence -, evolving (at least two new releases per year) to meet the needs and expectations of the user Districts. It is supported by a solid and perennial structure: four Rotarian designers, a service company which writes the code and a team of trainers/maintainers. It fulfills the requirements of the European RGPD legislation and benefits from the experience of nineteen user Districts. It is designed by Rotarians for Rotarians, within the framework of a non-profit association, and is approved by Rotary International

Today we are so enthusiastic about the results we have achieved regarding our image and the rigor of the management of our Clubs and Districts, that the Polaris IT team and me have decided to "spread the word" to European Districts which are not yet using Polaris!