President Dave Cohen (Cohen Durett, LLP) opened the meeting by welcoming everyone and thanking Past President Skip Lawrence for donating the wine for the wine reception, thanking Kevin Williams (KVIE)and Aaron French (Zanker Road Resource Mgmt.) for the introductory musical interlude. He also thanked the Greeters for the day, Diane Schachterle (America Civil Right Institute) and Gabriel Gendron (Lyon Real Estate).
He then broke the news that stalwart office soldier Cindy Pringle has changed to part time as of September 1st and then will be retiring at the end of President Dave’s term. It’s bittersweet news since on the one hand we can’t imagine how we’ll get by without her, on the other she’s certainly earned it.
President Dave then had the honor of introducing the District’s First Lady Elise Fong and her 1st Lady Service Project. In fact, it’s actually a family affair with daughters Katy and Sarah Fong being essential parts of the effort as well. The project is to bake homemade cookies which sell for $1 for a package of two, all proceeds going to the Rotary International Foundation. So far they have raised $1,300, so multiply that by two to figure how many cookies that is (that comes to 2,600 cookies for those without ready access to a calculator). By the end of the meeting most of the cookies were sold with President Dave jumping in to buy up the remainder.
Kathe Nathan (Golden Pacific Bank) then stepped up to the podium to offer a thoughtful and inspiring Thought for the Day. We were off to a great start.
Sargent-at-arms John McIntyre (Mercy Foundation) proceeded to welcome our honored guests, the most notable being Visiting Rotarian Gurpreet Singh Sidhu from the Rotary Club Sriganganagar,India who was in town visiting his son and daughter. He offered some very kind words which were gratefully received, after which he and President Dave exchanged club flags. What a world.
Another guest notable to everyone was Past District Governor and Past RCOS Executive Director Hal Shipley who recently lost his wife of 63 years, Lona. Hal expressed his gratitude for all the support he has received during this difficult time from Rotary members. We’re here for you Hal.
President Dave then introduced the head table: Chair of the Day Assistant District Governor JR Springer, our Speaker District Governor Glenn Fong, Chair of the Greeters Committee Jerry Haley, long time member Elfrena Foord (Foord,Van Bruggen & Pajak), and Meeting Sponsor Pat Derickson (Stafford King Wiese).
Speaking of the Meeting Sponsor, Pat Derickson was then invited to the podium. Pat is the President of Stafford King Wiese Architects, one of Sacramento’s oldest and prestigious architecture firms. Founded in 1945 it has always been recognized as the “go to architect” by school districts throughout California. That tradition continues, though their portfolio includes medical and retail facilities as well.
Charitable giving for the meeting was the poignant reminder of our very own Trio of Heroes, recently returned from France. Maynard Nelson led that charge by alerting the club that CSUS has a goal of raising enough money for Anthony Stadler to be able to graduate debt free with our gratitude. Please note that CSUS has the following link for direct contributions to this cause or you may send an Email to Ema in the office who will process your contribution.
Here are the links for the Anthony Sadler Community Scholarship:
District First Lady Elise Fong was called upon again to describe another service project she has initiated called “Fun for the Favelas.” The Favelas are the slum neighborhoods that occupy so much of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. While visiting for the Rotary International Convention in June of this year, Elise and Glenn and many others had the opportunity to meet, talk and play with many children from these neighborhoods, and fell in love with them. Noting that they more or less had the basics, they didn’t have any “fun stuff,” like dress up clothes and toys. So she is taking donations to gather these items and ship them to the children of the Favelas. President Dave promptly donated $100 to the effort. If you too would like to contribute to this worthy project please contact Elise at email@example.com
President Dave then introduced Chair of the Day, Assistant District Governor J.R. Springer to the podium to introduce our honored speaker, District Governor Glenn Fong.
DG Glenn gave a powerful and enthusiastic presentation about what Rotary was when it started, what it has evolved into over the years, and what it would need to evolve into in order to stay relevant.
He made special note of the bonds that tie us together. He related the story of John in his home club of Roseville who could boast perfect attendance for 66 years. He was in his 90’s and the news came that he had only a few more days left to live, so the club president brought their bell and held a meeting right at his bedside so he could depart knowing his record of perfect attendance was completely unblemished.
He noted the importance of diversity, not just of skin color but of generations of which there are at least five today with very different views of the world. To stay relevant, therefore, flexibility is paramount, flexibility in terms of club experiences and the use of social media and websites. He was able to report that the District’s membership has increased for the first time in six years.
DG Glenn then made a broad survey of the multitude of efforts Rotary makes on behalf of our local communities and the world: the efforts of our local foundations and of the Rotary International Foundation, of the Paul Harris Fellowships, and Polio Plus with the news that Nigeria has been free of polio for a year.
He also honored two of our most esteemed members, Past President and Past District Governor Fred Teichert, (Teichert Foundation) and Past President Susan Sheridan by presenting them with special pins to honor their community and club efforts on behalf of Rotary.
Finally, DG Glen promoted the District Conference May 18-22 in Berkeley by playing a video featuring his irrepressible daughter Katy who single-handedly no doubt will be responsible for the most well attended District Conference ever!
With that, President Dave dismissed everyone wishing them a good week!