The Flywheel

Program for FEBRUARY 16th, 2007

Under lock and key

Our own Alan Baer owner of Armor Locksmith Service reviews modern physical security issues in the community.  If you are wondering how to keep what you have, your father's pad lock may not be the answer


Meeting of February 9th, 2007

Welcome, Invocation, Thought for the Day

The meeting was called to order by Prez. George, who was able to multi task, and also did the invocation calling for Peace, Freedom and Justice in the world.  Ted Abrue led us in the Pledge.  Incoming Prez Pam ever-ready with a mind bending thought offered this, “the old believe in everything, the middle aged expect everything and the young know everything.”

Rotarians with Guests

Rhonda Harris had as her guest Ken Nelson, President of the Richmond NAACP.  Tom Bennett had as his guest Carlos Esquivel of CJS Carlo Fine Jewelry.  Bill Wahbeh again had as his guest Nae Park.

Sunshine Report

David K deferred to John Nicol for a report on Elof Granberg.  Everyone is encouraged to give Elof a call!


  • Margaret Morkowski made another request for hosts for our Russian architects.  Margaret is desperate for host families who would be willing to provide anywhere from 3 days to 3 weeks.  Anyone interested should please contact Margaret.
  • Prez George noted that we had received a thank you letter from the Crisis Nursery in Concord for our efforts during Christmas.
  • Margaret Morkowski reminds us that the annual Read Across America event will take place on Friday, March 2nd at Peres School, between 1:30 and 3:30. She encourages Rotary club members to come and read to students. Books provided, though you may bring your own books if you don't want to chance getting material a little beyond your grade level. (Margaret didn't say that.) Refreshments provided.

Happy and Sad Dollars

The Beav did the honors: Ren Partridge was sad that Jerry Feagley was not here to be inducted into the Club…maybe next week; JoshGenser, the proud father of an extremely talented daughter, report on her jazz solo at Yoshi’s; Joey Bags had a very terrible, horrible, very bad weekend of burnt food and beaten Bears…but Spring Training and the Cubs and Sox are right around the corner; Rhonda Harris reports that her granddaughter is on the verge of an acting career; Jim Young’s son secured a $4k grant to help with his airplane building endeavors; Luz Gomez was happy that her dad would be celebrating his 80th birthday and that the family would be celebrating in Mexico; our guest Carlos has some happy dollars for his wife; and John Nicol has a happy $5 to announce that he was “In fact, the father of Nicole's daughter ”. (We scooped The National Enquirer!)  

Raffle Results

Rhonda Harris dipped into the bag and came out with the white ball!


The Program

To 199 Combined Years of Service above Self

Program Guru Jim Young was happy to introduce our 4-person “Old Timer’s Who Am I?” program.

John “Can You Hear Me Now” Nicol was in the lead off spot.  John, who joined in 1964, had to wait 3 years because the Club had a 160 member limit because of the limited space at the Hotel Don.  Guests and overflow crowds would sit on the piano. He remembers Walter Helms suggesting he give $10 per year to become a Paul Harris Fellow. A 4 time Paul Harris Fellow, John has chaired the Rotary Reno trip for 47 years . (Thanks John for all your hard work ).

Ralph Hill was next to step up to the plate. Ralph, who joined in 1948, remembers the Rotary gift to the Y for Camp Ravencliff. That camp cost $14 for 2 weeks because he worked the camp store.  He was a student at Cal when Pearl Harbor was bombed in ’41.  Ralph served on the Liberty Ship Arthur P. Davis and his graduation speaker at Cal was Harry Truman. He worked in the lumber business in the mill and unloading box cars. He served as Rotary President in 1963-64 (when Werner joined, don’t blame him!).  Ralph feels that Rotary has been a blessing to him for 60 years (he is also Joey Bags’ Rotary Godfather).

Don Hardison was our third batter.  Don knew since he was 14 that he wanted to be an architect.  Don graduated from Cal (it cost $25/quareter) and played in the band.  He was at the Rose Bowl in ’38 the last Cal victory there!  Don’s career as an architect has taken his to southern California, Alameda and Mare Island.  He met Betty at Mare Island and they have lived in Atchison Village.  He joined Rotary in 1945. For a while he was the only architect in Richmond.  If you drive along Cutting Blvd, Barrett Ave and Macdonald Ave you will see many projected that were designed by Don.  He is most proud of the work he did for Cal including the Union, Sproul Plaza and the famous fountain, and Zellerbach.

Werner Schwarz was our “clean up” speaker, but he did not keep it clean and I have no idea what was fact or fiction.  Born east of New York, he was an “exchange student.”  He joined Rotary in ’63 with the classification “Isotope Research.” His “research” in Rotary has taken him to Reno— every year!  He has worked for Whirlpool, the Defense Department and Lawrence Livermore Lab.  He was Club President in 1980-81 and served as our District Governor in 1988-89.  If you want all the stats on Rotary…just ask Werner.

Thanks to all of our “veteran” Rotarians for all they have done for our Club and community over the years.  Together they represent 199 years of Rotary “Service Above Self.”

The Menehune, Rotating Editor -Don Lau