Yes, Pres. PETER was with us once again, and we began with the Pledge, led by SHANE WAARBROEK.  PP STEVE DAY and JACK HARRIS led us in America, and it really is one of our better numbers.  BRUCE ROLF gave the Invocation – not the one he originally planned, but an excellent substitute.  Turned out he was asking for help, not for himself, but for another, and everyone agreed it was well done.  LENORE MULRYAN couldn’t locate any Visiting Rotarians, but she did introduce several guests.  Shirley MORE was there, and SALLY BRANT brought her brother, David, who is a rancher from Montana.  RUDY ALVAREZ had just met Maya Roland, who is a senior in high school – she comes from Cologne, Germany.  AL BELLANCA was with his Special Guest, Sol Dresner – who should be circularized this week.  PP STEVE SCHERER had a Special Guest, John Heidt – and it should be noted that he and Maya were both interested in RUDY’S car - she said it was a hot car, indeed. 


Pres. PETER thanked PDG ANDY ANDERSON and PP MIKE NEWMAN for running the last two meetings, and they were nicely applauded.  PETER then noted how much we all appreciate the long service of our three Fifty Year members, Past Presidents all – JIM DOWNIE, HOWIE HENKES, and JIM COLLINS. And he noted our three historians at the 75th – again, all Past Presidents – RON WANGLIN, JIM COLLINS and STEVE DAY.  This past Sunday about twenty Rotarians and guests attended “Underpants” at the Geffen Theatre, followed by a nice reception at HOMER and MIKE NEWMAN’S office.

GEORGE COX called to our attention the excellent letter about the 75th which Pres. PETER had produced, and we all agreed.


Vice President DON NELSON spoke about the District Conference, which will take place next weekend at the Costa Mesa Hilton.  First activity is Thursday, with a Golf Tournament, and ED JACKSON along with PP DAVE WHITEHEAD will be playing. The opening Plenary Session will be Friday the 30th.  WVRC is the host for this event, and thus we need as many members as possible in attendance to greet everyone and pass out 75th Anniversary souvenirs.  This session will run from 0900 until 10:15, and if you haven’t notified DON that you can be there, please do so right away.  Anyone going down just for this session should contact YOE, since we could carpool.


Pres. PETER then asked us to think ahead, to the summer of 2005, when Rotary will be holding its 100th Centennial Celebration in Chicago.  Recently we had a visitor – the Vice Chairman of the whole shebang – who reminded us that if we book early, we can still get our choice of hotels.  Thus, we could choose one hotel, and everyone would be staying together.  On a show of hands, it appears that at least twenty of us from WVRC will be going. Please let DON NELSON know of your interest, right away, OK?  The Convention will be at McCormick Place, and thus we would like to be as close as possible to that location.


This brought forward GORDON FELL, to give his Craft Talk.  GORDON was sponsored by KEVIN KOMATSU.  Before beginning, GORDON felt he ought to defend CPAs, since they were trampled on at the last meeting.  He began by asking what a wife would say to her husband if she couldn’t sleep – the answer being, “Tell me about your work”.

To the question, what does an accountant use for birth control, he suggested, “His personality”.  His definition of a CPA is someone who solves a problem you didn’t know you had, in a way you don’t understand.  And finally, what’s the difference between lawyers and accountants – accountants know they are boring!


Gordon mentioned having run into some WVRC members over time.  One was CLARK McQUAY – they had a ten-year relationship when his daughter was growing up, but GORDON only knew him as Dr. McQuay!  GORDON graduated from UniHi, went on to Cal Berkeley, where he began as a music major.  Along the way, someone convinced him that his music might cause him to be standing on a street corner with a tin cup, so accounting took over.  His first employer was Arthur Anderson, when he graduated in 1969, and since he had been in ROTC, he was activated a year later.  After training at Ft. Sill, he was shipped to Vietnam, where he was an artillery forward observer.  He and his radio operator were standing in a stream when shrapnel caught them both – he was hit in both legs, and his radioman lost a leg.  They were medivaced out to the hospital ship Sanctuary in Danang harbor.  He spent the rest of his two year tour at Ft. Ord. 


Returning to Anderson, he also pursued his MBA at UCLA, meanwhile teaching undergraduate accounting – which he enjoyed.  When he graduated, he and a friend formed a partnership, which he left after awhile to become a solo practitioner.  He enrolled at USC for a Masters in Tax, and became associated with CHRIS GAYNOR’S firm – another Rotary contact.  Along the line, he and a friend started a Travel Agency, since they both enjoyed travel (and his Dad had been a travel agent).  He spent twelve years with another accounting group, and about the time he joined WVRC he again returned to being a solo accountant.  His wife is an orthodontist, and their daughter will be studying dentistry at Harvard.  His hobbies are golf and travel plus skiing, and his practice is mainly with small businesses.  GORDON preceded JAY HANDAL as President of the WLA Chamber of Commerce – again a Rotary connection.  I guess we should be asking ourselves what took him so long to come aboard!  Seriously, GORDON, thanks for sharing your life and career with us.


RUDY ALVAREZ came forward to talk about the Rotaract Awards Dinner meeting which was held last week – this was for all the Rotaract Clubs in our district.  We swept the Boards!  PP GEORGE DEA was chosen as the District 5280 Liason of the Year, and Scott Campbell, who couldn’t come to WVRC today, was honored as the Rotaractor.  Finally, UCLA Rotaract got the Project of the Year Award for their participation in the recent Corazon house building in Tijuana.  The members responsible for our receiving these awards start with PP GEORGE DEA, MIKE GINTZ, and KACY ROZELLE – thanks to each of you for your help.


The GSE Team was up next.  Just to be sure, let me tell you that GSE stands for Group Study Exchange, and it usually involves four members of the team, who cannot be Rotarians, plus a Team Leader, who is a Rotarian. A GSE team comes to us every year, while our Team goes overseas (RUDY was the Team Leader last year in Italy) and sometimes we are more involved than others.  This year, I was the driver on Thursday, and STEW GILMAN and DAN PRICE took care of the group at the Beach Club.  Their itinerary included a tour of UCLA in the morning, followed by lunch with WVRC, and then to the Beach Club.  While there, they rented bikes and skates, and had a great time – it was their first visit to an Ocean! And I must add one note – after I dropped them at the Beach Club, I returned to Westwood, and opposite the Mormon Temple  I suddenly had a flat tire!  I borrowed a cell phone, called Triple A, and then borrowed another cell phone to tell Joy where I was, since I was carrying a parking pass for UCLA which she needed. It all worked out, but it was a bit of an adventure, since this was a borrowed van, I didn’t know where the spare was – you get the idea.  Anyway, all ended well, and I want to thank STEW and DAN for their help. Next year, we need to expand our involvement – these are interesting visitors whom we should get to know.


The Team Leader was Aparecido Silva Machado. While he only became a Rotarian in 1990, before that he was Interact President, and Rotaract Secretary.  He also was a team member in 1987, when they visited New England.  Aparecido was a founding member of the Maringa Colombo Club, and served as President in 1991-92.  He is an attorney, plus holding an MBA degree – and is working toward a PhD.   He has been married to Madalena for fifteen years, and they have two daughters, Deborah, who is 14 and Isis, 12.  He enjoys walking with the family and is interested in Constitutional Law, particularly as it affects international business.


The team member I got to know best was Elis Simone Ferreira Fernandes.  She sat up front with me in the van, and passed along my comments for the rest of the team.

Elis has a Bachelors in Psychology and a Masters in Marketing and Communication.


She is employed by Cocamar, a 41-year old Agricultural Cooperative, and her current assignment is promoting exports for their retail products.  Elis enjoys sports, plays the piano, and she obviously enjoys everything she does.  Her husband is Sandro Rogerio Fernandes, and they have no children.


Rogerio Toshiro Passor Okawa is 32, and a Cardiologist, as is his wife.  He works both for a hospital and in a private office.  He received his MD in 1995, then took his residency in Internal Medicine from 1996 to 1998.  He qualified as a Cardiologist in 2001. Rogerio is an active volunteer in his community in Maringa, plus participating in PhD studies starting in 2002.  One of his goals is to join Doctors Without Borders.

His hobbies include reading, water sports, traveling and music.


Renata Catarina Rieiro Coelho is single, 26 years old, and has a degree in veterinary medicine.  She manages the family farm, and most of her ‘clientele’ are dairy cows.

She also works at two nearby farms, practicing her medical skills.  Her interests are reading, playing the piano and riding her bike – plus riding horses.  Travel is one of her loves, and she enjoys tasting different foods. She looks forward to making lots of friends on her visit here.


Allan Moreira dos Santos is 31, and has degrees in Business Administration and a Masters in International Relationships. He works for the largest cooperative in Latin America, which exports l.8 million metric tons of Soybeans, Soybean Oil and Meal, Cotton, Corn, Coffee, Wheat and Cotton Yarn. This grosses 320 million dollars per year. Allan’s interests include sports, especially volleyball, jogging, soccer and swimming.

He has a 7-year old daughter, and they enjoy each others company.


Each team member and the team leader spoke briefly, and then came the Q&A.


PDG BILL GOODWYN wanted to know about preserving the Rain Forest.  Some areas are not covered, but much of the forest is protected from development.  RAY ZICKFELD asked if there were unexplored areas in the Rain Forest – yes, it is huge, and note that Brazil is larger in area than the U.S. if you don’t count Alaska.  RALPH BEASON – Did moving the capital to Brazilia work. Yes, it has been successful.  Does the government pay to keep land fallow.  No, this is not allowed.  PP JOHN SINGLETON asked what the population of Brazil was.  They have 180 million residents, and Sao Paulo has 18 million, while Rio has 10 million.  What is your immigration policy.  It is open to all, but you need some educational qualifications.  Is there a flat tax.  No, the rate is 12% which does not apply to the lower income citizens.  The maximum tax is 25%.What about your crime problem. Especially in big cities it is serious and complicated by Drugs.  Someone then asked, promising not to repeat the answer, is there a difference in treatment between the public hospitals and private care.  Both are doing a good job, and the private sector is better. Pres. PETER then asked how many had visited Brazil, and there were lots of hands.  He next asked about seeing Iguaçu Falls, and a few of us had that experience.


Flags were exchanged, and everyone felt we had learned a lot about Brazil and the GSE team members.


                                                                                                YOE, Ernie Wolfe