NEXT MEETING: July 17, 2015
Opportunity for all: How Contra Costa is blazing a new trail in solving poverty
With increasing national concern about the growing income gap, there is much recent news coverage about minimum wage increases and other strategies to reduce poverty in one of the wealthiest nations on earth. In Contra Costa, a collaborative new initiative is engaging elected officials, city and county leaders, nonprofit service providers, the business community, labor and faith-based organizations in a “big tent” effort to address the root causes of poverty. Mariana Moore, the new Director of the Ensuring Opportunity Campaign to Cut Poverty in Contra Costa, will discuss the campaign’s structure, goals, current activities and early successes, and share how Rotary members can be part of the ongoing conversation on one of the most important issues facing our community.
- President Alan Blavins (overseeing his first meeting in his new role!) let everyone know that he had put the slide show running during lunch together to demonstrate all the amazing programs and events Richmond Rotary led and participated in during the past year. Thanks, Alan – it was a terrific overview!
- Menbere Aklilu had two announcements: First, to start raising funds for her Thanksgiving Day event for Veterans at Salute, she would be holding an event at the restaurant on July 23rd from 5 to 7 pm called “Grateful for Grapes.” There is no charge, just come and enjoy some delicious wines, great food and wonderful company, and hopefully make a donation to help the event. Visit http://salutemarinabay.com/uncategorized/grateful-for-grapes for more info. Menbe also thanked everyone for sending Mike Barrington, Rotary Club of Concord, to her after he visited Richmond Rotary seeking support for a school project in Ethiopia for teenage girls who have been physically or sexually abused. It turns out that the village where the school is located is the same village where Menbe’s grew up and in which her mother owned a hotel, which was passed on to Menbe. With the approval of her siblings who evidently shared in its ownership, Menbe will donate the hotel for conversion into the new school. More than a coincidence Menbe said, it is a miracle. She said she feels blessed to be part of Rotary, which, by making the initial connections, helped make this wonderful event happen!
- Mark Howe reminded everyone that the BBQ at his house, featuring delicious BBQ prepared by Stoney Stonework, was taking place Saturday (the next day), 7/18 at 3 PM! He added that Richard Alexander was planning on bringing his yacht and mooring it on Mark’s dock, for some extra fun!
- Sid Chauvin announced that he is unable to attend Bill Koziol’s Pub Crawl, offered at the Holiday Auction, since he’ll be recovering from surgery, so offered his seat on the bus to whomever is interested.
MEETING OF July 10, 2015
President Alan called the meeting to order and asked Menbere Aklilu to lead the Pledge of Allegiance. He asked recently demoted Stoney to lead grace, who asked for a silent prayer for freedom, peace, and justice on Earth. Sid’s thought for the day: If we all did things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves (a quote from Thomas Edison).
President Alan also had some “new President” remarks, to kick off his tenure on an auspicious note. He said that with old age comes wisdom, but also, unfortunately, forgetfulness, so… he can’t remember the bloody wisdom! But he does remember that Rotary is not only about service, but about fellowship and camaraderie, and he really wants the club to live up to its reputation as the “Friendly Richmond Rotary” in the coming year. He encouraged everyone to participate in (and invite prospective and new members to) all the great events this year: the fishing derby, the Halloween event (led by Mark Howe), the holiday auction AND the members holiday event, and many more. And in the spirit of fellowship (and showing what a generous guy he is), Alan added that his gift to each member for showing up on his first day was a glass of wine, on the table…but just for this week!
Visiting Rotarians and Guests
- The only guest was Andy Santamaria, a guest of the speaker (though Sid pointed out that Rafael Madrigal is almost a “visiting Rotarian”…).
- In Bill Koziol’s absence, President Alan discussed a message he had received from Ralph Hill by phone. He had hoped to make it to Alan’s first meeting as President and wished him well in his presidency. Alan was greatly touched by his kind message, and noted that he hadn’t known him at all before Rotary, but Ralph is now a dear friend, which is really what Rotary is all about! Joe Bagley added that he had also talked to Ralph who said “Hi” to everyone at the Club.
- We learned that Betty Hardison (wife of Don Hardison and Jan Brown’s mother), was doing much better.
Recognitions and Happy and Sad Dollars
Recognitions and Happy/Sad Dollars
- Dan Sanders celebrated his 7th wedding anniversary (though he had several years of service before the wedding) at the end of President Stoney’s term. He had a nice dinner with his wife.
- Sid Chauvin had sad dollars since football legend Ken Stabler died July 8.
- Jim Young had sad/happy dollars since he too was sad about Ken Stabler, but was happy to have seen him play.
- Tom Butt had happy dollars, since he is very happy to come to Richmond Rotary meetings – they are a heck of a lot more fun than his new (well, 6 months new…) job…
Social Media: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
Stacey Street introduced Jason Hanson, Digital Marketing Manager for The Light Digital in Richmond. Stacey read the bio Jason had prepared for her, which was personal, humorous, and not just filled with facts, since he practices what he preaches when it comes to marketing. Jason has worked with both for profit and nonprofit companies, using ideas and words to help sell products as varied as life insurance, smoothies, pregnancy tests, votes, financial advisory services, cars and others, and to get donations of money, blood and organs. Jason is passionate about helping small businesses and nonprofits get back to the basics of marketing and advertising – what we need to say, where we need to say it, and how it should be said.
Jason gave a humorous and thoughtful presentation entitled Social Media: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, focusing on what to expect today, specifically what social media can and can’t do. He started with the main proposition of all marketing: it’s a funnel that starts with hooking into emotion/heart, next appeals to intellect with facts and numbers and ultimately earns trust and respect. However, though all marketing works this way, and traditional media isn’t yet dead, we now live in a very distracted society, and social media is key since people are spending more screen time than ever. In fact, he shared the startling statistic that the average person spends 7 hours per day using apps on their mobile phones!
Social media can: 1) Raise awareness, especially about a specific organization or cause; 2) Build relationships and 3) Build a business, using the marketing funnel above. It can not 1) sell (only), since it is more about awareness and relationships 2) Replace everything – you need other forms of marketing and media and 3) Be free – it definitely costs to set up and maintain. He gave many examples and humorous anecdotes demonstrating what works and what doesn’t, and answered some specific questions about social media, including the increasing use of video beyond YouTube and how to make Twitter work for your company.
Stacey Street, Rotating Scribe