NEXT MEETING: June 27, 2014
It’s time for the annual change of Club Presidency. Liliane Koziol will be demoted and become a Past President while Stoney Stonework will be installed as new Club President for 2014-2015, beginning July 1. As always, this should be fun.
MEETING OF June 20, 2014
President Liliane Koziol called the meeting to order at the Richmond Country Club. She announced with glee that this was the last meeting she would lead as Rotary President for 2013-14! Ethan Heinrich led the pledge of allegiance and Stoney Stonework asked for a moment of silence for freedom, peace, and justice on earth. Sid Chauvin offered this thought for the day: The most practical, beautiful and wonderful philosophy in the world won’t work if you won’t.
Visiting Rotarians and Guests
Special Events and Awards
We are delighted to officially (and finally!) welcome a new member to the Rotary, Jeff Mulvihill. Although he has been a longtime friend of the club and thank him for all he has already done, we look forward to having him participate as a member, and learning even more about him.
President Liliane bestowed special service star awards to the following members:
Prez Liliane began the Club Assembly by recognizing and thanking all the members of the 2013-14 Board and bestowing beautiful plaques on each:
Liliane also had a special award for the New Generations Chair, Dan Tanita, who headed up this new program created by Rotary International and managed the exchange student from Russia. She asked Dan to speak about the proposal from Charles Ramsey, President of the School Board, to rename the Poratola School to the Fred Koremotsu School. Dan noted that Fred was not just a local hero, but also a national figure, recognized by President Clinton with the Medallion of Freedom. He refused to go to an internment camp, was arrested and sent to prison, and then sued the federal government. Although the Supreme Court upheld the conviction and he and his family spent years in a camp, Koremotsu appealed many years later, and the court ruled to overturn his conviction.
The Rotarian of the Year Award was presented to Henry Moe, a well-deserved honor! After Henry’s mother passed away, he attended the judging of the Rotary Four-Way Test demonstrating incredible dedication and commitment as the students’ participant coach. Henry received a standing ovation from all in attendance – great job, Henry!
Happy and Sad Dollars
In David Brown’s absence, Alan Baer asked individuals served with invoices to please pay your dues!
Pam Jones presented about the Satellite Program. A satellite club would not be a separate club, but would offer an additional meeting as a strategy to increase membership. For example, Richmond might consider adding a Monday evening meeting at Salute to allow those unable to attend Friday lunch meetings a time to meet. The Berkeley Rotary has created a successful satellite club, with additional evening meetings at a local pizza joint and a focus on fellowship, a key part of Rotary. We will continue the conversation with Berkeley and learn all we can.
Alan Blavins encouraged the club to consider merging with some of the other BARSHEEP clubs, such as Pinole (12 members) and El Cerrito (23 members), to become the West Contra Costa Rotary. This would create a much larger club membership. It would mean a revision to the by-laws, which were written many years ago and clearly didn’t foresee so many small city clubs so close together. It seems time to bring the by-laws up to modern standards!
After reassuring everyone he was not going to discuss his sauce, Stoney said there will be two key areas of focus this year:
1) Increasing membership: We need to get back to networking and fellowship, not just service and fundraising, though they are important. He charged each member in the room and on the roster with bringing in one new member this year. We need to talk up Richmond Rotary, and take, and use, the “Watch Rotary” and “Be My Guest” cards!!
2) Programs: Kudos to Liliane for bringing members of international consulates and those who helped this year. We need to have exciting programs so current and prospective members want to attend. He has asked this week’s scribe to be the new Program Chair (no pressure!).
Stoney also introduced new members of the Board in 2014-15: Henry Moe, Felix Hunziker, and Richard Alexander.
Those members in attendance at the meeting provided a vote of confidence for Club Secretary, Alan Baer, as he highlighted an issue involving another Club member.
Connie Tritt presented the Foundation report. She noted that the Every Rotarian, Every Year campaign increased donations 11%. Sustaining membership, those who contribute $100 or more, increased 16%. Overall, 74% of members have contributed to the Foundation. Liliane thanked all the members not only for the good work they do on behalf of the club, but also for their generosity to the club and the District overall!
President Liliane concluded by reminding members to enjoy their success and be proud of the many accomplishments this year. The “adventure ride” is coming to an end – a thrill with ups and downs, twists and turns – overall a blast! Thank you, Liliane, for your leadership and dedication this year!
Stacey Street, Rotating Editor-in-training