NEXT MEETING: December 21, 2012

The Port of Richmond

Port of Richmond Executive Director Jim Matzorkis will speak about our Port of Richmond and West Coast shipping in general, and the global warming induced possibility of a real Northwest Passage.

MEETING OF December 14, 2012


President Jim Young repeated his “R” word opening. Relatively, Rambunctious, Reasonably Respectful, Remarkably Generous (see below) Richmond Rotary Club. Doris Mitchell led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance, and Stoney gave the Invocation. Henry’s thought-for-the-day: “God bless the victims and the families of the school shooting in Sandy Hook, Connecticut.”

Rotarians with Guests

Pam Jones introduced two guests, Neville & Shawn. Doris Mitchell had her daughter Mia. Alan Baer had his two little Baers. We also welcomed Rod Wood, with three other El Cerrito fire fighters.


  • December 1st saw the First Volunteer Orientation for Richmond Tales, the play at the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts. Four Rotarians showed up, half from Richmond and half from Alamo.
  • On December 6th we had a communications and publicity meeting at the East Bay Center. Eight Rotarians participated, 7 from Alamo. Jim was glad to see Rotarians interested in this project. (Sarcasm?) He just wanted more of them to be from the sponsoring club, that is, Richmond Rotary. Stay tuned for more information.
  • Jordan Simons from the EBCPA was here last week for the Auction. We will have him back soon when he can say a few words project and be understood by the crowd
  • Jim asked members for help for Don Lau bag give-a-way groceries at the Coronado “Y” Gym. They need help on Saturday too.
  • Richmond tree planting Saturday, January 19th at the Solano Playlot
  • The annual Crab Feed will take place on February 2nd 2013. $40.00 each.


• Kudos to Auction Team Leaders Don Lau, Josh Surowitz and  Michelle Itagaki, and also to David Brown and his “Check out crew”. David informed us we raised an astonishing $27,800.00 Proof that Richmond Rotary Club is indeed Remarkably Generous.

Mike Winter rose to offer a contribution in recognition of his birthday, December 15th.

• Rod Wood, EC Fire Fighter and Founder of the Toy Drive lamented they had only 350 bikes for an expected 1.500 bike requests. Pam started calling colleagues and Rotarians to get donations for up to 100 more bikes. At $47.00/bike + helmet, you will never be able to buy a more affordable new bike. By the end of the meeting, Rotarians had contributed cash and checks for 70 bikes, to date. Again Wonderful Holiday generosity!

Herb noting that quick action on getting bikes is more important than observing form that it is best for the club if contributions are given to Richmond Rotary and then the club writes the check for the bikes This helps the rest of Rotary appreciate the full scale of the club’s generosity. It helps spread the Word. Plus it would be nice to get some decal recognition on the given bikes.

Henry Moe gave a little recap on past presidents of Interact who are all enjoying great success. He asked for a further $800.00 for a third Camp Royal scholarship. The amount was raised on the spot by donations from Herb Cole, Jon Lawlis, George Egan, Mark Howe, Alan Blavins, David Brown, and Stoney.

Happy and Sad Dollars

Jim said the ritual of Happy and Sad Dollars wasn’t necessary, Jonathan disagreed. Not sure how that was resolved.

Norm’s Nonsense

Son: Mom, Hi. How are you? How’s everything in Florida?
Mom: Not so good. I’ve been very weak.
Son: Why are you weak, Mom?
Mom: I haven’t eaten in 38 days.
Son: That terrible. Why haven’t you eaten in 38 days?
Mom: Because I didn’t want my mouth to be filled with food if you should call.


The Richmond Police Department

Today’s speaker was Deputy Police Chief Ed Medina, a 25 year veteran of the Richmond Police Department.  He started his career in law enforcement after serving 5 ½ years as a United States Marine, stationed at Camp Pendleton, California, and abroad. He received his honorable discharge in 1987.

Ed explained that the Department is organized into three geographically-defined divisions. Officers are assigned to the divisions, and longer tenures within the divisions enables them to spend more time in neighborhoods getting to know locals, cars, and business owners.

The Department’s has invested in new technology that enables the three divisions to interact like never before; for example, CCTV and the ShotSpotter. The ShotSpotter can locate within ten feet where a shot was fired and what caliber it was. All officers have cell phones and a GPS in every car. This is not used to determine how long they are parked at doughnut shops but to permit dispatch officer know exactly where each car is.

Of course the Department doesn’t just rely on high-tech.  Officers work with building inspectors and carpenters to board up broken windows or doors, when the robbed owner cannot be reached. They organize heavy equipment to cope with illegal dumping– a growing problem everywhere. When it comes to police support, Richmond is in capable hands.

Richmond/El Cerrito Police & Fire Departments Toy Drive

Our annual Toy Drive was also part of the meeting’s agenda. Pictures speak louder than words.

Photos by Neville Guard and Alan Blavins.
Rotating scribe, Alan Blavins.