NEXT MEETING: November 2, 2012

Richmond Rotary's Role in RotaCare

We’ll hear an update about the RotaCare medical clinic to be operated at the Richmond Family Strengthening Center on Macdonald Avenue near 27th street. The Center is part of Brighter Beginnings, a non-profit organization started in 1984, with centers also located in Oakland, Antioch, and Bay Point. The mission of Brighter Beginnings is to “support healthy births and successful development of children by partnering with parents and helping to build strong communities“.

Richmond Rotarians will coordinate with Rotarians in nearby clubs to support the RotaCare clinic. If you’ve already indicated your willingness to lend a hand, please plan to attend an orientation meeting on one of 4 Tuesday evenings: October 30th, November 13th, November 20th, or November 27th.

You need to register for an orientation. Please contact Drea Riqueime, at 510 903-7516, or

To learn more about volunteer opportunities, please download this orientation flyer.

MEETING OF October 26, 2012


President Jim Young called to order a well-attended meeting of the Richmond Rotary Club. Felix Hunziker lead us in the Pledge of Allegiance and Stoney Stonework invoked us to think of lofty things. And as we all know, it’s the thought that counts.

We enjoyed a good turnout but there were no visiting Rotarians or guests on this beautiful fall day. Speaking of which…

The Sunshine Report

Earl Brown is at home and recuperating.
David Brown
has the flu, so our treasurer’s contribution to the discussion that follows would be absent today.
Jan Brown
, too, is ill. (For the record, none of the 3 ‘Browns’ in the Richmond Rotary are not related.)
And despite the fact that our Sergeant-at-arms, Sid, was still sick, there was no discernible break down of Club order. See? Sunshine.


  • Richmond Rotary sponsored the Halloween Costume Pageant at the Solano Play Lot Fall Festival on Sunday, October 28.
  • The Richmond Rotary Lite-Happy Hour will be held on November 7 at Club Mallard, Albany.
  • The Richmond Rotary’s 2012 Holiday Auction will be on December 7th.  Don Lau stresses that we need full Club participation to meet our goal of $,20,000. He noted that the contribution of events that involve social mixing (like tequila tasting, a pub crawl, or a birding trip) are especially popular fundraising items. So check out what some of your fellow members have already contributed on the 2012 Holiday Auction page, and be sure to add your own auction gift in the coming days.
  • Stoney Stonework reminds us that the Richmond Rotary and the El Cerrito Rotary are jointly celebrating the season with a Holiday Party, tentatively slated for December 15. So tentatively mark your calendar.


Charlie Wong celebrated an 87th birthday, and misses everyone.
Michelle Itagaki celebrated her 50th birthday with a day at the spa and a truly disappointing dinner to follow. (She should consider bidding on Stoney’s Holiday Auction item next month.) Despite the less than perfect birthday celebration, Michelle generously donated $100 to the Foundation.
Tom Butt celebrated his 32nd year as a member of Richmond Rotary, and also donated $100 to the Foundation.
Thank you all!

Happy and Sad Dollars

  • Heather Kulp was glad to be back at the Club.
  • Joan Davis was pleased to announce the completion of the Nystrom Multipurpose Building, and was beaming about the ultrasound she received of her newest grandchild.
  • Josh Genser thoroughly enjoyed watching Cal get hammered at the Big Game.
  • Rafael Madrigal had a great time at the latest tequila gathering (go Giants!).
  • Jerry Feagley was glad to be back at Rotary.
  • Richard Alexander is still upset about the outcome of the Cal game.
  • Jon Lawlis was thrilled that his daughter finally is graduating college.
  • Joe Bagley was ever-so-glad to see the Tigers lose.
  • Charlie Fender donated $70 in honor of his 70th wedding anniversary.

Norm’s Nonsense

This guy was on the beach in San Francisco shooting seagulls with a shotgun and putting them in a bag, when a cop arrested him and told him it was against the law to kill seagulls. The guy explained, “But I am homeless and these seagulls are the only food I have to eat.”
The cop said, “I’m taking you in and you can tell it to the judge.”

After hearing the shooter’s tale of woe, the judge said, “I’m going to let you go with a warning. You can’t kill any wildlife in the city limits.” Then the judge became curious and asked, “Tell me, what does a seagull taste like?”
The man replies, “It’s sort of a cross between a bald eagle and a spotted owl.”


Club Assembly

Today’s meeting was the first Club Assembly held in many years. President Jim Young led the meeting, beginning by reporting that the Club currently has 60 active members. The board recently voted to drop several non-active members, and is now focused on recruit new members who will be active in the Club.

Tom Waller, a board member, provided the membership with a succinct but detailed statement of Club income and expenses for the 2012–2013 fiscal budget.

Connie Tritt, Foundation Chair, described the several subcategories of the Foundation that members may choose to apply their contributions to. She also informed members how they could obtain replacement Paul Harris pins.

Membership Chair Josh Surowitz was unavoidably absent on this day. Filling in, Jim Young said that the Club’s board has established that membership growth and increasing membership involvement in ou events together comprise the most important things we must all focus on. To that end, Jim went on, the board has discussed using a scorecard for determining Rotarian of the Year and assessing the activity level of each member. Implementation, he said, was being considered for January 1. A short but energetic discussion followed about the pros and cons of quantifying membership participation. Jim recognized that we needed to consider the topic again in a following meeting.

Program Chair, Michelle Itagaki, asked for assistance from the membership to help her continue to identify suitable programs for future meetings.

Nick Despota handed out an overview of specific community service projects funded under the now-approved 2012-2013 budget. He also expressed a hope that this or a similarly formatted report be produced in coming years, a snapshot of the projects and programs to which we contribute our dollars and volunteer hours.

Because not all of the topics for the Club Assembly could be addressed in the time available today, those topics will be carried over to future meetings for further discussion.

– Rotating Scribe, David Keystone