WVRC on June 22nd
Meeting preceded by music by maestro Jim Downey.
Past President Eric Loberg began the meeting with the pledge by Terry R. White followed by “Home on the Range” led by Jack Harris with Jim at the keyboard. “Rev” Lee Dunayer, after stating that he had planned to thoroughly prepare for the invocation in Eric’s honor but didn’t, proceeded to read an invocation written by our guest speaker Peter Bylsma “in humble supplication to a power greater than ours, gives us an opportunity to gather in the spirit of service to protect our nation and keep our military safe. Amen.”
Visiting Rotarians were past President Angi Ma Wong from Palos Verdes Sunset Club, an Intracultural Consultant, and Dick Winchester, Santa Monica Club who works in Real Estate Investments.
Guest of Rotarians
Past President Tom Linehan introduced former member Bill Edwards of Hilgard House.
Other visitors with Rotaract President Candice Danshevar, were Michael Daneshvar and David Elihu.
Past President Eric began by stating he was not going to talk about his year but during his presidency in 1983 we won every award given out by the district, Numero Uno, but for international service, which was a joke. We got #2 but no one did as much as we did in international service.
Story time by Eric, a history lesson if you please (editor’s note: I know that the “lesson” was intended to be funny and satirical (and it was) but I found it offensive and not in the spirit of Rotary or the Four Way Test and I am not going to repeat it in this Windmill). Eric then called on Sean McMillan for an announcement. Sean proceeded with a story on Eric’s younger life as a lover and as a great dentist. Eric proved to be such a great dentist, that his “patients” couldn’t feel a thing, even in the bedroom.
Ed Jackson presided over the Alan Campbell Award. Alan was a past Principal at Emerson Middle School and a long time member of this club. This award goes to graduating students with the highest GPA. Ann Sampson presented the award to Keilah Martinez with a 4.0 average for 3 years. She was joined by her mother. Another award went to Benjamin Jason Howard. He was joined by his parents. Congratulations to both of you (and to your parents).
Shane Waarbroek introduced our speaker Peter Bylsma, Executive Director of Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse publicity (CALA). He began his career in public relations as a Walt Disney Character and is a graduate of USC.
Peter thanked Lee for crediting him for the invocation and adding a new dimension of spiritualism to his topic.
CALA is an organization of small businessmen, community leaders, members of legal profession and citizens who are concerned about the impact of lawsuits on our lives: Our mission is to reduce the amount of frivolous lawsuits.
Peter sited some lawsuits where by business owners were required to spend thousands of dollars defending themselves because of minor violations of the handicapped code. And there are attorneys who specialize in suing over such minor violations as mirrors 3” off to one side.
Peter also cited the cost of manufacturer’s legal fees and that the cost of each auto included $500.00 to $1000.00 for legal costs of defending themselves against lawsuits, many of which are frivolous.
CALA is currently lobbying for modification of current laws in order to reduce the filing of these lawsuits which currently cost each citizen nearly $1,000.00 in taxes beside the extra cost of products which we buy.
Peter closed by requesting that we join and/or contribute to CALA (Peter, my tape recorder failed me so much of this is from memory). Questions from audience reminded us that Bill Bloomfield Jr. was very active as President of CALA for many years. Bob Thom also reminded us that he also was involved in CALA.
Thanks, Eric, for a job well done. Your points to ponder were also lost due to the tape recorder problem.