The Flywheel

Meet at LaStrada Restuarant
For the september 15th Program

Junior Achievement Program

Angela Higdon, the Junior Achievement coordinator for West County, will talk about the Junior Achievement Program, what it is and why it's important.

Note that this meeting is at La Strada Restaurant, Church Lane at San Pablo Avenue, in San Pablo. All members should bring their appetites, but those of Italian descent, in particular, might plan to eat a little extra.


Meeting of SEPTEMBER 8th, 2006

Welcome, Invocation, Thought for the Day

On a gloomy, cold normal cold summer day…Prez George rang the bell and called the meeting to order.  Past Prez Stoney called for a prayer for justice, peace and freedom.  Judy Morgan was called on to lead us in the Pledge.  Prez George gave us a Thought to ponder: "A bad day is just as good as a good day." (huh?) 

Visiting Rotarians

Denny Megeghelli of the Sunrise Club, Jim Brandt of the Alamo Club and Neal Wells of the El Cerrito Club.

Rotarians with Guests

There may have been more guests than Rotarians….so if I miss a few…sorry.  Mark Howe had as his guest Allen Baer of Armor Locksmith.  Werner Schwartz introduced Michael Gill, Kimberly Miller, Yvette Hunter and someone else.  Since Werner forgot to introduce Leah John Nicol did the honors.   Herb Cole introduced our guests from Mexico: Ricardo Flores Mesa; Laura Y de Flores; Consuelo Gonzales Martinez; Marie Inez Gonzales Villareal.  Of course, Herb forgot to introduce Norma.

Sunshine Report

Since there was no sunshine or David K…there was no report.


  • Herb Cole gave a brief update on some of the visits he had made with the group from Mexico including a stop at Peres Elementary School.
  • Liliane Koziol informed the group about the International Friendship Program at Berkeley.
  • Hank Covell reminded all that Rotary Night at the Masquers is next Thursday, 9/14.  If you are still interested and have not signed up please contact Hank.
  • Don Lau reminded all of the YMCA’s 50th Pancake Breakfast on Saturday, 9/9.  Thanks to Hank for being at all 50 of them!
  • Jon Lawlis gave an update on the upcoming mission to Ghana where they will participate in immunizations as part of PolioPlus
  • Joey Bags reminded all about the Pt Richmond Music and Arts event on 9/9.


It was Joe “Chi-town” Bags who handled the Recognitions.  He started off by getting Jim Young for talking while others were trying to speak.  He then got Dan Sanders for the front page spread on his business.  Since he was up Dan invited all to his 20th Anniversary on 9/23 at his office.  Lance “who?” Jackson was in the audience and recently celebrated a birthday and happily gave a “C” note to the club. Joe then recognized Rotary Twins Dave Ninomiya and John Nicol who both joined Rotary on 9/2/42.  Dave remembered having the kitchen closed for health reasons at his first meeting.  John remembers having to wait 3 months to get into the club since it could only have 160 members. I wonder who died so they could get into the club?  John made a contribution to his son’s Paul Harris to honor the occasion.  Father Nick was recognized for his 3 years in the club.

Happy and Sad Dollars

Nick Despota was happy he got to proofread his daughter’s 20,000 word dissertation. George Egan was happy that we now are legit thanks to Josh Genser.  Josh was happy his daughter made the varsity Volleyball Team at ECHS.  Markku Pelanne, thinking we did not understand it the last time, thanked us and explained our gift of a van to the Seaman Center.  I still don’t understand.  Jim Young is excited that his daughter has landed not one, but two acting gigs.  Jon Lawlis, ever the Rotary diplomat, was happy to have the opportunity to entertain our guests from Mexico.  Erle Brown was sad that Cal got spanked although it helped that Stanford also got a beating.  Ted Abrue was happy he got to hear Dr. Canseco and visit Peres where he was proud of the work our club is doing there.  Herb has $10 sad ones for not introducing Norma and also some happy ones for George Egan’s brevity in his introduction at the dinner.  Herb…take a lesson!  Werner, not be be out done, matched Herb’s amount for not introducing Leah.  Joe Bags was happy he got to spend some time with daughter Lana.  Our guest, Ricardo, gave some happy dollars to thank those in our club who have shown him and his group a great time and invited everyone to come and visit them.

Raffle Results

One of our guests, Yvette Hunter, won a beautiful painting given to us by Ricardo.  Josh Genser got a chance to draw and got a white ball, but did get some very lovely flowers.

The Program

The first half of the program was a DVD presentation made by Jon Lawlis, Herb Cole, and Ted Abrue that featured their trip to Monterrey, Mexico in January 2006 to distribute wheel chairs.  On this trip, 450 wheel chairs were distributed each costing $150. For every $75 raised there is a $75 match. There is a very rigorous screening process that Rotary performs to make sure the chairs are getting to those in need. There is another trip being plan so if you are interested contact Jon, Herb or Ted.

Nick Despota and Jon Lawlis presented the second half of program— a "walk-through" to the new Rotary Club website they created (and which you're using right now).

Nick showed each of the features and various sections that comprise the web site.  He demonstrated how to use the Roster section to quickly fire off an e-mail to a fellow Rotarian? He also spoiled any excuses you might have for claiming you didn't know you had Door Duty, pointing out the ever-current list in a sidebar of the site's home page, The Flywheel. Sid Chauvin might be pleased because he won't need to cover for you in the future! Jon took pleasure in showing off the neat collection of pictures he's assembling, in the Year in Pictures section.

Nick encouraged everyone to contribute his or her ideas to the web site.  We all agree that we have a top of the line web page! Thanks Nick and Jon for putting it together— while still remaining friends.

Your Ever Rotating Editor,
The Menehune