Steve Scherer and Friends, Investment Day
Aram Dobalian, "Emergency Preparedness"
Kathleen Andersen of Catholic Education Foundation
Sweetheart Valentine Brunch, Lawry’s
District Breakfast - LAX
All Officers and Committee Chairs should (must!) attend
Westin Hotel, 5400 W. Century Blvd.
DISTRICT GOVERNOR CHUCK ANDERSON at WVRC on January 22nd.
PP PETER MORE led the Pledge, first reminding us that we also celebrate the birthdays of our two most important Presidents. George Washington served 277 years ago, and Abraham Lincoln was in Command during the Civil War, 1861-65. ART HENRY provided the Invocation. “Lord, we praise thee, our Father, for the theme of January, with its gift of new time and the myriad ways we have of serving. We give praise to create new beauty, and to relive pain, to renew a part of this sordid world, and to give ourselves, exclusively and endlessly in the ways of spelling out love.” And LENNY fearlessly stepped forward to lead us in America, one of our better numbers.
PP CHRIS BRADFORD introduced two Special Guests. First up was Scott Fitch, who is sponsored by PEGGY BLOOMFIELD Scott is with UBS in Santa Monica. Elise Soley, who has also been with us before, is with Volvo. TOM BARRON brought Bill
Finestone, who is an Attorney. We next met those at the Head Table. Benedikt Bryden is an Assistant Governor, and next to him was ED GAULD. MARK BLOCK was seated next to them. The other half of the Head Table was District Governor Chuck Anderson, who was accompanied by his Executive Aide (and DG Nominee) Doug Baker, and President SEAN.
I now propose to add some entirely unrelated bits of information. You may recall that I have previously displayed a copy of The Rating Guide, which is issued by the American Institute of Philanthropy. This booklet lists a large number of charities, and rates them from A to F depending upon the percentage of income which reaches the charity itself. Today, TERRY R WHITE asked me for their address, and I now pass it along should you wish to receive their information. They can be reached at P.O. Box 578460, Chicago IL 60657-8460, (773) 529-2300, www.charitywatch.org and they will send you a copy. Eventually, they’ll ask for a donation, but you can get their Charity Rating Guide either way. I’ve found it to be most helpful. Before the meeting today I was given an excellent summary of the life of Robert C. Kennedy, who passed away in October of 2008. Bob was an active member of WVRC starting in 1949, and was President in 1956-57. Both RALPH BEASOM and BOB LUSK have read it, and I now have the booklet, if you wish to see it. Lastly, there was an inspirational moment provided, but I decline to print it.
With at least two Irishmen on the program, you knew there had to be some of that eagerly awaited Irish history. In this case we were provided with the history of the name Londonderry. The name Derry is an Anglicization of the original Gaelic name of the city, Doire, meaning oak grove. In 1613 the city was granted a Royal Charter by King James I to reflect that association with the City of London and, in particular, The Honourable The Irish Society which had been granted lands in and around the city. And to complete the loop, the name was re-affirmed in a decision handed down just 2 years ago by the High Court of Justice in Northern Ireland. So there!
After lunch, I sold two pins, to SHANE WAARBROEK and MARK ROGO, so the treasury is richer by twenty bucks total. Doug Baker, the EA (and I know you recognize that as standing for Executive Aide) introduced Chuck Anderson, who belongs to the Redondo Beach Club. In his opening remarks, Chuck provided a brief quiz, first asking who had written our Four Way Test. I blurted out “Taylor” and sure enough, received a Chuckles bar as my prize. (The full answer is Herb Taylor in 1932). He next asked who would be the DG Nominee for 2011, and SHANE came up with Brad Robinson another Chuckles bar for him. Somebody got the year right when Paul Harris died (1947) but I missed who said so was it PP STEVE DAY? Chuck then introduced his mascot, one of twelve lions he has collected as District Governor.
DG Chuck began by briefly reviewing the first half of his year, and reminding us of how fortunate we are to live in the United States of America. Right now, in San Diego, 534 DG Elects are going through their training. The month of February will begin training of our new officers. We continue to emphasize our five major goals Service, Fellowship, Diversity, Integrity, and Leadership. Cliff Dockerman, a Past RI President, was quoted as saying we may soon be in China - and that would be a major boost in membership, of course. PP Dockerman also predicts that once we conquer polio, many NGO’s will come aboard, so they can leverage their funds thru RI.
This is not a happy time of year for those under five many of them will not see that birthday! Remember that 26,500 children die daily, under the age of five, from malaria and unsafe water. There are still five billion people on earth who live in abject poverty! Everyone in this room needs people who care for them and it is our obligation to help the many who are less fortunate. The District 5280 Goal for this year is to raise $600,000, and to do this, we need to raise everyone to a standard of $250 per member. In our entire history, WVRC has given $703,811.35 so we have a record to build upon. We have 546 Paul Harris Fellows, and 42 Benefactors.
Bill and Melinda Gates have made a challenge gift of 100 million dollars, which we must match to finish the fight against the last remaining traces of polio. They also have pledged another 255 million on top of their original challenge gift. Our Paul Harris Society members each give $1,000 annually to Rotary last year District 5280 had 156 Society Members. As to how we spend our income 97% of it goes to the user, which makes us an A+ in The Rating Guide, noted above.
Rotary has faced, and overcome three major challenges WW 1, The Depression, and WW11. We now face our newest challenge Membership Growth. Our goal is to increase by a net 10%. Our organization is getting old, and we have to change with the times or begin to fade away like the dinosaurs. We are making a major effort to attract young people, and RYLA is a big part of that. Asking a friend to join Rotary is easy and remember, you are doing them a favor! We can all be proud of what Rotary does Polio eradication alone is a huge success but we have to ask for members.
Q&A STEVE PETTISE asked about Polio. When we began our eradication campaign in 1979, 300,000 people were coming down with it annually. Last year there were 1,500 new cases, all in Nigeria, India, Afghanistan and Pakistan. They are difficult to close out, since the local warlords claim our vaccine will sterilize the women. Yet we have 1.23 million Rotarians around the world, and that gives us an edge. The local imans were objecting to the vaccine because it wasn’t made in a Muslim country so the problems continue. But Rotary will stay the course, and not switch to any other major health project until polio is gone, period.
President SEAN had several gifts for Chuck some Bailey’s Irish Crème, a check to the District for $450, and a map of Ireland. And of course there were Words of Wisdom: Never go to bed angry, stay awake and plot your revenge, OR Treat each day as your last because…one day you will be right!