The Flywheel

Next meeting: March 30th

Lending a hand to improve schools in India

Alamo Rotarians Vishwas More and Chris Suter update us on a project to improve basic education and literacy in India. This joint project between BARSHEEP clubs and District 2980 in India provides classroom furniture, computers, solar lighting and more.


Meeting of Friday, March 23rd

Welcome, Invocation, Thought for the Day

On a bright and sunny day, Prez EJ Shalaby called the meeting to order at the Richmond Country Club. Standing closest to the flag on the pole outside, Past Prez Alan Baer led us in the pledge. Stoney Stonework offered a silent prayer for peace, freedom and justice. Henry Kelman was happy about the sunny day, but not so sure about the Dow which was at 13k.


  • Membership Chair Josh Surowitz reported that the last Happy Hour was not well attended. He may look at a different day, time and place. Stay tuned.
  • Nick Despota reporting for the Teen Mom Committee (Jan Brown and Darlene Almeida) reported that the Club will be filling “Care Bags” for the teen moms on 5/25. Donations of personal gifts or children’s books would be appreciated.  Contact the committee members.
  • San Pablo Rotary Night in Tuscany will be 4/27.
  • BARSHEEP Wear (no wool sweaters?%$#) like personalized tshirts etc are available. Contact the Shepard
  • BARSHEEP Happy Hour is last Friday at La Revolucion
  • NIAD Work Party is set for 4/21.  Foreman Mark Howe will have details after scoping out the work needed.

Special Events

  • Prez EJ took a straw poll regarding meeting spots.  EJ indicated it would be discussed on Tuesday at a Board meeting at his office.  Contact EJ if you have input regarding Mira Vista, La Revolucion, or Richmond Country Club.


Your Scribe “phoned at friend” and called Don Hardison who was celebrating his 96th Birthday on Friday. The Club never sounded better as we all sang a rousing chorus of “Happy Birthday” to Don!  Hope you had a great Birthday Don! On Architects’ Day, the other one Tom Butt was also celebrating his birthday and turned down another singing of Happy Birthday and contributed to the Community Fund. Tom spent some time in New Zealand and Yosemite.

Happy and Sad Dollars

Hank Covell had some happy dollars and a report on Ralph Hill’s exploits; John Wilson had some happy ones for his grandson (a 4th grader) being accepted at Sacramento State; Josh Genser was happy his daughter was home for Spring Break and glad we were at Richmond Country Club; Bill Koziol was glad to be at Club and was happy to report that his dad is doing better. We all wish him continued improvement Bill!

Norm's Nonsense

You know you are getting old when...

- You are at the barber shop and start looking for the large print edition of PLAYBOY Magazine.

- The only exercise you get is sucking in your stomach when you see a beautiful woman.

- You realize that the secret of staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly and lie about your age.


Kidpower: prevention bullying and child abuse

Jim Young introduced our speaker, Erika Leonard, Program Manager of Kidpower a non-profit organization providing bullying prevention, child abuse prevention, stranger awareness and personal safety for children, teens and adults, including those with special needs.

Kidpower was started in 1989 by it’s founder Irene who in 1986 was confronted by an angry man while on a field trip with her child. Kidpower takes a multidisciplinary approach using best practices that teach people how to be safe from other people. It is only when kids and adults feel safe that they can experience joy. If you are afraid it really limits one’s ability to experience different opportunities.

Kidpower works with ages 3-96. Erika believes that only through acting situations out, practicing what words to say, and how to say them can people be prepared for risky situations. Erika had us all practice what she teaches to the kids and adults who take part in Kidpower.

Ms. Leonard provided several links to articles that address the ways in which Kiwpower addresses abuse, assault and violence to which children are exposed:

Overcoming the Bystander Effect: Kidpower Response to Richmond High School Assault:

More current events are regularly addressed in the Kidpower Blog at:, including

What Penn State Could Have Learned from Kidpower

Ohio School Shooting: How Can We Empower and Protect Our Kids?

- The Menehune, Rotating Scribe