CRAFT TALKS at WVRC on January 17th Once again, our best programs
JACK HARRIS led the SURPRISE Pledge! Then ‘Old Reliable’ LENNY came forward with America the Beautiful. MARK BLOCK gave the Invocation, starting off with an admission for each of us We ARE growing older! Once this sometimes sad truth was out of the way, a number of confessions came into play: resisting the temptation to fix things for others, being helpful but not bossy, sealing one’s lips about aches and pains, even admitting a mistake now and then, having the ability to see good things in unexpected places yes, all good things (but not applicable to YOE, certainly!). Anyway, Well Done, MARK.
We received the sad news of the death of Derek, DIANA and BOB TOM’S son. Details will follow, but cards would be nice, please. And some good news I collected $75.00 today for parking at St. Albans just what we owe!
I've also been informed that I misstated the names of two stock picks last week. For PP STEVE SCHERER, his pick should have been QCOM, and for LEE DUNAYER, the correct pick should have been CGW.
We had several visitors. Lynn Aschdendorf who belongs to the NE Sunrise Club in Philadelphia was with us she is a paralegal, and gets out here every few months. JOE MULRYAN, related by marriage to LENORE, visited from LA 5 he is a minerals consultant. PP STEVE SCHERER had a Special Guest, Sarosh Motivala, PhD, Geffen School of Medicine, who was a previous Speaker to our group a year or so ago. KATIA VAISBERG, our Rotaract President, had two new members with her, Andea and Panthea. And SUNNY came with LENNY, of course.
We were reminded of the District Conference in Newport dates are 7-10 February, It’s at the Hyatt Regency, and promises to be an entertaining and educational event. I have applications. And the following week, February17th, Sunday will be our Sweetheart Valentine Brunch, at Lawry’s. Save those dates, please.
We had a real treat before our regular program. Oliver Putnam, who is a freshman at Hamilton High School, played selections from Bach and Mozart for us. He was accompanied by his parents, Oliver and Linda. I spoke to his dad afterward, and he tells me he is Oliver’s teacher, and that this was only his 3rd public performance. Oliver will be entering the Music contest at the coming District Conference another reason to be there!
MYRON TAYLOR we’ve missed you! came forward to introduce Dr. MARK KRAUSE, Senior Pastor at the Westwood Hills Christian Church. Dr. KRAUSE was born in Idaho, has been married to his wife, Susan, for 28 years, and they have three children. His father was a physician, and Dr. KRAUSE has a BA, MA, and PhD (which puts him ahead of some of us learned types). MYRON ended his presentation by telling us that MARK is a ‘Fellow Minister’, and coming from him, that’s pretty good company!
MARK is an excellent preacher, and it showed in his flow of thought, his jokes, and you could see that he was comfortable in front of us. He first asked us to believe that the rain in Seattle, where he grew up, is “kind of a dry rain”. His wife, Susan, was born in Canada, but she grew up in Orange County, so she is his instructor in the ways of California. Some of the differences he has already noticed include the ‘rule of the stoplight’ (if you are first you wait for the late runners, but if you are 2nd, you honk when the light changes!) and the double lls in some words are pronounced as in Spanish, of course. He remembered this rule when he preached the next week, his text being Jesus saying ”Fowyo Me!”
He followed up these bits with a story which we all held still for-about the Kansas City Royals who had a pig for a mascot. He asked President CHRIS if he remembered the story, coming from Kansas City as he did, but CHRIS declined. Anyway, Ken Griffey Jr came to bat for the Mariners, and hit a line drive to center field. Would you believe that just at this point, the pig mascot escaped? Well, he did, ran out onto the playing field, looked up, and there came the ball. The pig opened his mouth to squeal, and the ball went into his mouth he swallowed it! There was great confusion the KC team feeling that Griffey was obviously out, while the Mariners held the opposite view. It was finally ruled an ’Inside the Pork Home Run’…Like I said, we all held still for this, so you gotta watch this guy he will sneak up on you.
MARK has two brothers. The older one is a Physician, in Richland, Washington, and his younger brother is a Minister at a large church in Idaho. Their whole family is musical. His father played trombone in a Glen Miller type band, and MARK was fascinated by the violin. This led to lessons, and when he graduated from high school, he went on to Willamette College for a degree in Music. He planned on a teaching career, but was advised the jobs were closing down and his long-standing call to Ministry reappeared. He told the story of his replying to a question from a house visitor as to what he wanted to be, the assumption being that he would be a Doctor like his father. But instead, he replied that he wanted to be like Mr. Jones, their Minister. Mark moved on to Christian College in Seattle, met his wife there, and their three kids are all musical. Daughter Mary is a Seminary student in Boston and plays the violin and guitar, son Jesse plans a career in computers and helps his dad with related questions, and daughter Beatrice is a senior in high school, and plays the flute.
Mark was ordained in 1979 and served in several churches in Idaho. He got his Masters at Emmanuel School of Religion in Tenn, and returned, at age 28, to teach at Christian College. His PhD is from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Chicago, and he wrote his dissertation after some study at Cambridge. He has preached in over 150 different churches, with some time in Burma and the Philippines. He is an active author, plus being co-editor of a Journal, which he displayed. Mark does contract work with Standard Publishing, which provides much of the Vacation Bible School material now in use. He came to the Westwood Hills Christian Church this past August, and he is pleased and proud to be a new member of WVRC.
RON KLEPETAR was up next, and was briefly introduced by PP STEVE SCHERER. STEVE pointed out that this was the second time around for RON, who gave us a craft talk over twenty years ago (in 1982, to be exact). He also is a fellow alumnus of Illinois, but both RON and STEVE did not attend the recent Rose Bowl game!
As RON looked at his Rotary picture from 1982, he found some differences. He had more hair, no gray then, he could go into the kitchen and remember why he went in. Back then he didn’t have hearing aids but in the interest of saving his marriage, he has them now. This came about because of their viewing TV, with strong differences of opinion as to the proper decibel level but he usually ended up asking her, “What did they say?” He admits that now, when she asks him to turn UP the TV, he finds that very satisfying…
He still loves the practice of law, but it is no longer the major focus of his life. RON was born in the south side of Chicago, some nine months after VJ Day and he now realizes there may be some significance in that interval of time. His father was born in Prague, the son, grandson and greatgrandson of a doctor. He was able to escape from Czechoslovakia in 1940 and came to the U.S. Working his way through college as a janitor, he graduated in Chemistry. Among his accomplishments was inventing the adhesive that they put on what is now called Duct Tape. Unfortunately, his entire credit for this invention was a $1,500 bonus, since his company drew the patent. His mother came here from Germany in 1934, which was probably the low point of our Depression.
Thus, Ron grew up in Chicago. He swam on the swim team in high school and played clarinet in the orchestra. In deciding between Cornell and Illinois for college, his father much favored Illinois, somehow. Finishing his BA in Chicago, he then got his law degree from DePaul (not to be confused with that other school promoted constantly by Mr. WESSLING…Taking the bar exam in Chicago in February turned out to be a life-changing experience, when for three straight days the temperature never reached five below zero. So he rode to LA in a friends car, took the Bar, and met a girl from Chicago who was attending USC to become a Teacher of the Deaf.
Wanted to continue his education, to become a teacher, he received a scholarship from New York University. The scholarship wasn’t really enough to support himself, so he proposed to Jill! After getting his Masters in Law at NYU, he figured he could use some practical experience, and his interest was in Labor Law. His hero was Clarence Darrow, known for the Scopes Trial and the criminal trials in Chicago with Leopold and Loeb. However, what Darrow really was, was a Union Attorney. So they moved to Washington D.C. where he worked for the National Labor Relations Board. His job was to argue Labor Relations cases for the NLRB, but they both wanted to return to LA. So, moving out here, he worked as a trial attorney for the NLRB for a year and a half. Once he figured out that there was more money to be made ‘on the other side’, he became a Management Attorney for another firm. RON decided he could do this on his own, so he took a couple of Associates with him and formed his own firm.
RON and Jill have two kids. Melissa Renee is now 32, and works with the Multiple Myloma Foundation. She does fundraising for them, and was married this past September. Her husband is a wonderful guy and now they are waiting for grandkids! However, when she called home to ask them to bring her pills to the wedding, RON asked Jill if maybe they could find some ‘look-alikes’. However, he reported that they didn’t do that… While attending Reed College, which RON knew was a very liberal school, Melissa Renee called to report that two students were studying on the grass outside her dorm room. RON easily explained that people did their studying on the grass in Oregon, but she replied, “Dad, they’re buck naked”! Their son, Scott, is 28, and is looking to work in the Film Industry. He has studied Lighting at Boston University, and wants to become a cameraman. But instead of just being a cameraman, he wants to operate a SteadyCam (sp?). This is a camera mounted on a vest, and steadied by a gyroscope - so good, so far. However, the catch is that you have to buy the equipment RON estimates that would cost about three years college tuition! At present, Scott is the camera operator at Staples, where you can see the action on a large screen not what he wants to do, but it is a living. RON’s wife, JILL, has returned to USC to get a second Masters, in Social Work. When RON called her father to report this good news, he said to him, “You know what that means” and there was a click on the other end of the line. She has that Masters now, worked afterward for Kaiser, and now has a successful private practice.
Most of RON’S practice now is Labor Relations. He represents clients in their negotiations with Unions Teamsters, SCIU, Steel Workers, etc. He also handles all negotiations for the Red Cross. In one instance, he was trying to change the contract so that Sick Leave would be paid in dollars, not as part of the contract. A Union organizer finally said to him, “Klepetar, if you bring up Sick Leave one more time, I’ll break your arms.” RON didn’t bring it up again…RON somehow became a major witness against the Teamsters for the US Attorney’s office. Knowing the Teamsters, he recognized there were risks attached, but in answer to a friend’s inquiry, he said his major change was to suggest his wife and he change cars! Unions are no longer the force they were, dating from the Reagan Administration. He also does Litigation, which involves a lot of jury trials, and he has discovered that he loves speaking before groups. He also ran a number of classes for UCLA, on Labor Relations. His dad died in 1984, and has always been his inspiration. RON is delighted to be back with WVRC, and we certainly welcome him!
Words of Wisdom: Yogi Berra
If you don’t know where you are going, you will wind up somewhere else.