NEXT MEETING: February 20, 2015
Nerds Are Cool!
Jim Hammack, Chief Nerd for Nerd Crossing Computer Services, will speak about his company, his experience and his work in the community. Jim founded Nerd Crossing with a simple mission in mind – to provide the world with a trustworthy, customer service oriented technology service provider. Nerd Crossing was founded on the principles of “giving back,” and Jim and his team believe that technology should be something that improves lives. Yet, as promising as the technological advances are today, the truth is that it can be quite overwhelming. Nerd Crossing takes a patient, customer service oriented approach to help us navigate through some of these challenges and learn to embrace technology as a tool.
Jim dedicates his spare time to helping the community any way he can. He is a champion for local nonprofits and proudly serves on several Boards. He has over 20 years experience in the IT industry, including IBM and Charles Schwab, and he holds a BS in Electrical Engineering for Computers and an M.B.A., which is using for world nerd domination! Jim is especially proud that Nerd Crossing was named Small Business of the Year for 2014 by the Richmond Chamber of Commerce.
- Henry Moe thanked everyone who helped with the Richmond Rotary Crab Feed on February 7th, especially Alan Baer, Joe Bagley, Sid Chauvin and Jim Young. He also thanked everyone who attended and supported the event. President Stoney Stonework thanked Henry for organizing the Crab Feed.
- Stacey Street announced that the March 6th meeting would be an “away” meeting at Contra Costa College. Details will be announced and posted on the Flywheel, but the meeting will take place in the Three Seasons restaurant at the College and the new Interim President will be the featured speaker.
- Tree-planting, a most gratifying way to get your hands dirty, will take place on March 7th at 9am. See Stoney for details.
MEETING OF February 13, 2015
President Stoney called the meeting to order and asked Henry Moe to lead the Pledge of Allegiance. Sid Chauvin’s thought for the day was: He who hesitates is probably right.
Visiting Rotarians and Guests
- Stacey Street introduced Monica Lazo, Director of Grants Management for Richmond Community Foundation.
- Speaker Alisha Fowler introduced her guest, Michael Habermas.
Recognitions and Happy and Sad Dollars
- Josh Genser had happy dollars since Jim Young took him and Mark Howe on an incredible tour of Moffett Field, where his son works, over the weekend. Josh marveled that with everything they saw, from aircraft to what really excited Mark was a generator!
- Jon Lawlis had sad dollars for the lack of support from members overall for the two most recent fundraisers, the Holiday Party and the Crab Feed. They were both wonderful events but were very poorly attended.
- New Mayor Tom Butt paid a fine for missing a number of Rotary meetings. Prez Stoney asked him for a quick update on the state of the city, which Tom noted is on his website…. Tom has been very busy with his “on the job training” and will be happy to provide more of a report later!
Watch us BLOOM!
Stacey Street introduced Alisha Fowler, co-Founder of BLOOM Educational Enrichment, a new organization in Richmond. Alisha is a former educator who felt there was a need for a different kind of after school programming to reach kids, without just drilling the basics and taking the fun out of learning. Alisha introduced her co-Founder, Kam Usuro, a former educator in Connecticut who worked for Sylvan Learning Center in the Bay Area. Alisha and Kam provided the seed funding for the organization and are now working on building programs and support, since they recently secured 501 (c) 3 nonprofit status.
BLOOM aims to identify and develop remedial academic skills in children Grades K through 6 through out-of-school-time programs. It provides homework assistance, educational enrichment and academic tutoring as well as creative outdoor and indoor activities, such as gardening and yoga. Bloom uses a holistic approach to develop the whole child, including helping children develop practical skills. BLOOM’s first group of students were at Booker T. Anderson, through a partnership with the City of Richmond over the summer. They are now working on recruiting a cohort of students for an afterschool program during the spring term.
Jim Young noted that Alisha Fowler has been actively building relationships in the community, and she coordinated with West County Reads and supported the Richmond Rotary Book Drive by personally putting out collection bins and helping collect books for the Club.
Stacey Street, Rotating Editor