The Flywheel

MEETING OF February 27th, 2009

"When you look upon a star, makes no difference who you are… not really"

Jon Wilson (the younger) talks about astronomy and the public astronomy program at Mt Diablo State Park including the Mt. Diablo Observatory.


MEETING OF February 20th, 2008

Welcome, Invocation, Thought for the Day

On a beautiful Friday, Dan Tanita rang the bell and Prez Mark called the meeting to order.  Guest Jovanka Beckles led us in the Pledge of Allegiance.  Henry Kelman was asked to offer his opinion for day and quite forcefully offered that certain Corporate Leaders should be put on the streets and if possible the thought of “hang ‘em high” came to mind.

Visiting Rotarians

Don Farquharson was visiting from the El Cerrito Club.  Mack Lingo from the Berkeley Club joined us as well and spoke highly of the Peace Fellow project.

Rotarians with Guests

Web-dude Nick Despota’s guest was Jovanka Beckles (maybe for the last time), Rafael Madrigal had with him John Marquez, Dan Tanita introduced Beth Gelfin of ICC.

Sunshine Report



  • March 14th will be our hands on pounding nails, build a wall project at NIAD.  So will there be lunch??  Check with Mark and Joe Bagley
  • New Member Reception will be coordinated by PP Pam Jones at Prez Mark’s home on March 19 from 6-9pm.  Y’all come!
  • Peace Project, at the Nevin Center, is looking for volunteers particularly for Saturday February 28 from 10am-1pm.  Please come out to support if you can.

Special Events

Prez Mark welcomed Bob Connolly, Mechanics Bank Branch Manager Point Richmond, who received his Red Badge and instructions on how to get his Blue Badge.  Welcome Banker Bob! Speaking of Blue Badges Jerrold Hatchett was on the fast track traded his Red for a Blue.  Congrats Jerrold!


Your Scribe celebrated his 20th Anniversary, thanked Dave Calfee for performing the blessed event in ’89 and gave a donation to the Rotary Foundation.

Happy and Sad Dollars

David Brown is happy he will be joining brother Erle Brown in PV; Jim Young was happy his family is expanding including a grandchild in the near future; Leslie Levy was happy to be at the meeting and knows that David Brown does not need a vacation; Soon-to-be Prez Glenn Daggs had $5 for PP Jon Lawlis who was off to Anchor Bay; Hank Covell a returnee from “Camp Erle” in PV looked very tanned and informed all that there was no more scotch in PV; and Jan Brown reported on the reading project Margaret Morkowski is using for the Peace Project.

Norm's Nonsense

Norm's been thinking about some people he knows.

- Pity the short person. He is the last one to know that it has started raining

- Some people are electrifying— they light up a room when they leave.

Raffle Results

Glenn Daggs with a choice between 2 balls picked the white one!


Improving relations with Russia

Jan Brown introduced our speaker Sharon Tennison, founder and President of  the Center for Citizen Initiatives (CCI) who started a “citizen diplomat” program in 1983 with the USSR. With the threat of nuclear warfare being the number one health threat at that time, Sharon saw the program as a way to diffuse the friction between our 2 countries with the hope of seeing each other as human beings and not enemies.   

Since the program started 500 Rotary Clubs and 30,000 Rotary volunteers have been involved with the program.  Sharon recognized our own Dan Tanita as one of the first to get involved with the Dental exchange program.  While the program teaches entrepreneurial skills to emerging Russian business people it also builds good will and respect for each other.  Sharon feels that the American press is giving Russia a “bum rap” and that the reporting contains distorted information.  If you are interested in getting the “other side” of the news you can go to


- Rotating scribe, The Menehune