The Flywheel

Program for friDAY May 2nd

The Work of the Workforce Development Board
Linda Chandler

The Workforce Development Board (WDB) of Contra Costa County is appointed by the County Board of Supervisors in accordance with the federal Workforce Investment Act of 1998. As Strategic Planner for the WDB, Linda Chandler will provide an overview of the many activities and challenges of the WDB, including critical questions like how to ensure that the knowledge and skills of retiring "boomer" workers don't leave when they do.

MEETING OF May 2nd, 2008

Welcome, Invocation, Thought for the Day

Prez Pam Jones rang the bell and began another gathering of the friendly Richmond Rotary. Josh Surowitz led us in the pledge of allegiance. Henry Kelman waxed philosophical about how parents (like us) provide the archetypes for the mates that your children are most likely to eek out as companions, wives and husbands.

Visiting Rotarians

Chance Troughton from the Hercules Club was visiting with father John.

Rotarians with Guests

Jim Young again introduced Laura Kuhn who is scheduled to join the club on the 9th.

Sunshine Report

In the absence of Bill K. who is celebrating the beginning of marital bliss, club health was assumed to be pretty good…


  • Erle “Loud Mouth*” Brown, speaking without amplification, said the club was at 240% of our Rotary Foundation goal. It is getting down to the end of the Rotary year (June 30). So it’s time for those “you know who you are” members that may have forgotten to contribute to the Foundation to kick in $100 so the club can reach beyond 300% of goal. New members were reminded that the club pays the second $500 of your first Paul Harris Award contribution. Such a deal, if this was gasoline, you would be buying Rotary gas at $2.00/gallon. *”Loud Mouth” was one of those memorable ‘Erlisms’.
  • Jim Young, doing his best Mark Howe imitation, said that the proposed Rotary/RPD Gun Buy Back Program is moving along with general support being expressed by the City and the RPD. The idea is to have a Fund Raiser Walk and BBQ in summer, August probably, with the BBQ involving a boat trip from the Ford Plan to Wine Haven at Pt. Molate. The actual Buy Back will be in the fall around the 1st of November. This is a work in progress. Anyone interested in helping with Almost Prez Mark Howe’s project, see Mark.
  • Rafael Madrigal invited members to participate in the 23rd Street Merchants Assoc. Cinco de Mayo event, parade on Saturday and Fun Zone on Sunday. You are reading this as ‘old news’, but the parade was a lot of fun and well attended and I have heard that 18,000 people attended the Sunday events. “Pictures at 11”.
  • E. J. Shalaby announced an upcoming Tequilla tasting. Your scribe admits that his notes on this event are so cryptic that beside the missing details, the event may not be accurately represented. See E. J. for more info.

Special Events

Who Am I?

Prez Pam asked Kerrie Andow to come up to the podium for her 'Who Am I' presentation. Given mic troubles and Kerrie's slight stature, she elected to be in front of the podium and told us she is a lady accustomed to change, large changes in the past year which include a project management position at the Hass School of Business at Cal, to implement changes in the School's business services methodologies. She is proud of having used a combination of both graphics and biology skills while she was working for Genentech and designed 'biological art' that became the cover of Science Magazine. Kerrie is third generation Japanese-American, but grew up in a rural setting in the Catskill Mountains on Jewish cuisine and attending the Bar & Bat Mitzah's of her friends and school chums. Kerrie's two passions besides graphics are her son and daughter. Kerrie summed up her life in an unusual display of diplomacy and philosophical note, "My life must be good because I am here now." Your editor has also learned that among her many talents, Kerrie is also a Black Belt in martial arts.


Jim “The Beav” Beaver launched into recognitions asking Micheal Gill if it is true that he is a May Day baby? Michael confessed it was and that the best part was being able to drive through Berkeley on his B-Day and watch the socialist druids perform their traditional rites. Michael’s own celebration was low key as he was home alone, but he had $ for the Rotary Foundation. The Beav, was ready to sit down but: Rafael Madrigal reminded him that this is his one year anniversary with the club and, besides his Cinco de Mayo efforts, Rafael celebrated with a contribution to the Rotary Foundation. As The Beav started for his seat again, Ren Partridge stood up cleared his throat and reminded the Beav that he and Jeanne were celebrating their 40th anniversary and Ren gave a check to the club to prove it. Happy Birthday Michael and Congratulations Rafael and Ren!

Happy and Sad Dollars

The Beav, now feeling the full weight of memory loss, launched Happy and Sad Dollars giving some Happy $$ for the club’s current ‘Golden Age’ of club Treasurers. This was loosely taken by your editor to be a positive comment about the numerical accomplishments of Treasurer David A. Brown Esq. As the Beav returned to his seat to rest on his laurels and posterior, Jim Young jumped up to do another Mark Howe imitation, thanking E. J. and Pam for coming to the Wednesday evening Beer Can race. Mark was especially pleased that he was able to triumph over his nemesis, “Infinity” and win this race. Your editor is not sure if this victory was the result of Mark's sailing skill or the apparent fact that the other boaters, faced with ‘small craft warning’, returned to harbor. Mark allows that Rotarians need not participate in future Beer Cans if there are posted Small Craft Warnings or if you need to wear ‘foulies’…

Raffle Results

A white ball was drawn by Kerrie Andow, free lunch next week Kerrie.


100 Years: A World of Difference
SF Rotary Centenniel

Curtis Burr, an Ex-President of the San Francisco Rotary Club (2nd Rotary Club formed) and a CPA practicing in San Francisco, addressed the Richmond Rotarians this Friday and spoke about Rotary’s upcoming centennial anniversary. In so doing, he reflected on what the centennial celebration means to him. Mr. Burr noted that although Rotary was founded by a group of Chicago businessmen of different vocations, and that he was initially advised to join Rotary for networking and business advantages, when he read Paul Harris’s book “My Road to Rotary”, he was impressed that only through friendship and companionship can individuals reach their goals.

Mr. Burr regaled Richmond Rotarians with a historical account of Rotary moving from Chicago, where early Rotarians began serving their community by members providing clothing and food to needy families on Thanksgiving, to a rich tradition of service and community involvement that rapidly spread to San Francisco, in November 1908, to Oakland, Seattle, Los Angeles, and beyond.

Concerning the San Francisco Rotary Clubs efforts in their community, including supporting programs such as the Salvation Army and Habitat for Humanity, S. F. Rotarians have had a special connection with the San Francisco Boys and Girls Club. In 1923, the S.F. Rotary became a major supporter of what at that time was called the “Boys Club” and the projected goal for the upcoming centennial is to raise $1 million of the approximately $5.9 million that will now be necessary to renovate that club’s Mission Branch.

In his rich personal history of service, Mr. Burr has also traveled with Rotary for philanthropic purposes to Vietnam, in 1997, where Rotary helped perform eye surgeries and train local doctors to do the same, and to Ecuador, in 2006, where Rotary lent aid to a local hospital.


Mr. Burr also delighted the Richmond Group with a meaningful parable, appropriate to his theme that we can all make a difference in small and big ways, and that every hand and every minute helps. Below is a version of the Starfish Story: Once a man was walking along a beach. Off in the distance he could see a boy going back and forth between the surf's edge and the beach. As the man approached he could see that there were thousands of starfish stranded on the sand as the result of the tide. The man was stuck by the apparent futility of the task. There were far too many starfish. Many of them were sure to perish. As he approached the boy continued the task of picking up starfish one by one and throwing them into the surf. As he came up to the boy he said, "You must be crazy. There are thousands of miles of beach covered with starfish. You can't possibly make a difference." The boy looked at the man. He then stooped down and picked up one more starfish and threw it back into the ocean. He turned back to the man and said, "It sure made a big difference to that one!"


Mr. Burr reminded Richmond Rotarians about some special events coming up in anticipation of the S.F. club’s centennial celebration.

  • Gala Dinner at the St. Francis Hotel – Grand Ball Room, on November 9, 2008. Speakers will include PRIP Richard D. King, and RIP D.K. King. Individual tickets are $200.00.
  • Veterans Day / Rotary Centennial Celebration Parade will be held on November 9, 2008.
  • The Boys and Girls Club of San Francisco – Renovation of the Mission Branch – November 10, 2008.
  • Special Rotary Club Luncheon Meeting on November 11, 2008 at 11:30 A.M. Speaker will be PRIP Cliff Dochterman. $75.00 per person.
  • Napa Valley Deluxe Wine Tour – 8:30 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. on November 8 and 10, 2006. $136 per person, lunch included.
  • Pier 39 and Alcatraz Tour – 10:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. November 8 and 10, 2008. $70 per person.
  • Steve Silver’s “Beach Blanket Babylon” – Rotary Exclusive – 8:00 P.M. November 10, 2008. $80 Lower Level per person; $72.00 Upper Level per person.
  • Monterey Bay and 17 Mile Drive Tour – 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. on November 8, 2008. $85.00 per person, lunch on your own.
  • San Francisco City Tour – 10:00 A.M. to 2:30 P.M. – November 8, 9, or 10, 2008. $74.00 per person. Lunch included.

-Your Rotating Editors, Jim Young (business meeting) and Josh Surowitz (program)