Posted by John McIntyre on Jan 12, 2018
No mellows were harshed at today’s meeting of the Rotary Club of Sacramento.
Welcome: President John Lemmon (Knox, Lemmon & Anapolsky, LLP) called the meeting to order at 12:15pm, to the strains of Johnnie B. Goode, which picked up where Elfrena Foord (Foord, Van Bruggen & Pajak) left off from her elegant piano ministrations. President John acknowledged Elfrena, as well as Ed Wright (Martensen Wright, PC), who organized today’s Wine Reception. President John thanked today’s greeters, Tina Reynolds (Uptown Studios), Robyn DeLong (Coldwell Banker), and Jaena Nakagawa (Tri Counties Bank), and also made special note of the triumphant return of Mead Kibbey.
Thought for the Day: Provided by Nancy Teichert (Writer and Conscience), who expressed her pride in being part of a free press and made us mindful of how vital it is to our society.
Introduction of Guests: Following the Pledge of Allegiance, Sergeant-At-Arms Callee Setzer (Setzer Forest Products) introduced several guests for today’s meeting:
  • Mike Appezzato from GOOD, guest of Steve Johansen (Johansen & Associates)
  • Karen McDougal from McDougal & Co. and her son Duncan McDougal, guests of Robyn DeLong and Steve Huffman
  • Mary Barber of Legacy Law Group, guest of Denny Evans (Northwestern Mutual Financial Network)
  • Debbie Lemmon, guest of President John Lemmon
  • Bret Rossi of KMTG, guest of Robyn DeLong
  • David Song, newly accepted to Stanford, guest of LuAnn Richardson (Re/Max Gold)
  • Eduard Goffart-Winkin, RCOS Rotary Youth Exchange student (Belgium), guest of John McIntyre (Mercy Foundation)
  • Tim Bystrowski of HUB International, guest of Paul Bystrowski (HUB International)
  • Stephanie Mann of USPS, guest of Kelley Moran (Moran & Associates)
  • Laura Mason-Smith and Colin Smith, guests of Dennis Smith (Tsakopoulos Management Company, LLC)
  • Grant Taylor of Stonebridge Properties, guest of Dan Fenocchio (Cunningham Engineering)
  • Keri Thomas of Sutter Health, guest of today’s speaker Joe Devlin (Pot Czar)
Additionally, we had one visiting Rotarian, Hans Haesslein from the Passport Club.
While Sergeant-At-Arms Callee went in search of refreshment after that lengthy recitation of guests, President John introduced those who joined him at the Head Table:
  • Chair of the Day, Past President John Frisch (Newmark Cornish & Carey)
  • Speaker, Joe Devlin, Chief of Cannabis Policy & Enforcement, City of Sacramento
  • Writer Nancy Teichert
  • Bob Daly (Financial Network Wealth Advisors)
  • Bob Miller (First US Community Credit Union)
Recognition: Following several minutes of fellowship among members, President John took the opportunity to recognize Hugo Bogren (UC Davis Medical Center) on the occasion of his 85th birthday, which caused Dick Osen (law, retired) to spring up, as if possessed, to lead us in the birthday song in Hugo’s honor.
President-Elect Diane Woodruff was then called forward to recognize members who cleared a new Eddie Mulligan threshold – Bob Daly and Bill Proffit (Land Park Ski & Sport), each for their first EM, Dick Osen for his second, and overachiever Elfrena Foord for her seventh!
Club Announcements: President John noted that the club meeting on February 13th would honor Valentine’s Day. He encouraged everyone to bring someone they love to the meeting and to provide photographic evidence (preferably historical). He was kind enough to provide a sample, shown on the video screen, of an impossibly skinny, tall guy with a lovely date.  President John also introduced new RCOS staff member, Barbara Clegg, who apparently comes to us from a family of seafarers. Welcome Barbara!
Ed Wright strode forward saying he needs help to cultivate additional Wine Sponsors – don’t be shy or hesitant – if you will provide the wine, the club will be happy to provide consumers.
Bob Miller shared several photos of Golf 4 Kids check presentations to each of the four programs we support with the event’s proceeds (this year more than $38,000!): Bowling Green Elementary, Fern Bacon Elementary, Luther Burbank High School, and the Ralph Richardson Center. He also announced that Golf 4 Kids would be postponed until May 2019, to avoid conflicting with the Sacramento Century event. Bob made clear that this delay would not impact our ability to continue supporting these important programs and he hoped the change of date would encourage greater club participation.
Building Together: President John noted that Bob Miller had been featured in the movie Lady Bird but that, apparently, his first acting appearance was left on the cutting room floor (although his back makes a cameo). Still, Bob nobly offered $100 toward his next Eddie Mulligan for this recognition. Rita Gibson (Rita Gibson Insurance & Investment Services) offered $100 in honor of Lady Bird’s homage to Sacramento and quoted Joan Didion’s line that opens the film (“Anybody who talks about California hedonism has never spent a Christmas in Sacramento”). John Swentowsky (Swentowsky Photography) donned his Georgia Bulldogs hat and put $100 toward his next Eddie Mulligan in honor of his son’s school, having been prepared to pay more, if they’d gotten past Alabama….  Lastly, in a display of Rotary fellowship and collegiality, Laura Heintz (Stanford Youth Solutions) told of having been hit with a “rate audit,” which required her organization to drop everything and respond. Among things needed were comparables for their facilities. She was at a loss, but called Past President John Frisch, who came up with comparables by the next day – and SYS sailed through the audit. Laura put $100 toward John’s next Eddie Mulligan.
Speaker Introduction: Past President John Frisch introduced speaker Joe Devlin, citing his lifelong connections with Sacramento and his courage in taking on a position that leads to people to offer playful job titles, like “Pot Czar.”
Speaker: Joe Devlin, aka “Doobie Director” and “Captain Cannabis,” provided a humorous but sobering presentation of the challenges that result from Proposition 65 which changed State law on January 1st to make it legal in Sacramento to purchase cannabis for recreational “adult use.” He noted that while this is so for the City of Sacramento, where there are now 30 medical cannabis dispensaries, 13 of which have now added adult sales, other communities throughout our region have taken a wait-and-see approach.
Mr. Devlin made several observations and cited areas where there are opportunities for systematic improvement. For example, the daily limit for individuals to purchase is extremely high – he believes that these per-day quantities will be reduced, particularly for edibles and vaping. It is possible that the value of marijuana cultivation in California could exceed $20 billion/year. Right now, California grows between 5-12 times the amounts of cannabis needed for use in the state. Last year, $4.8 million in revenue from cannabis came to Sacramento. Mr. Devlin anticipates that this amount could double in the relatively near future.  Banking issues remain a challenge, especially with the federal government still considering cannabis illegal. Rigorous testing standards are being put into place to ensure that legal cannabis is free from pesticides – there is a substantial push to grow marijuana organically, without any pesticides. Legalized pot remains contentious, given that California is taking a different path than the federal government, but there are moves and countermoves in the offing. Mr. Devlin recommended we invite him back, if he’s not incarcerated for doing his job, sometime in the future to see how the landscape has changed.
Next Meeting; Prior to announcing next week’s event, Callee Setzer allowed an ebullient Mike Bullington (Pacific Advisors) to announce that, during our meeting, his daughter had given him a 2nd grandchild and that he would contribute $100 in her honor toward his next Eddie Mulligan. Thereafter, Sergeant Callee noted we would gather again at the same location next Tuesday where our speaker will be Anthony Wright, CEO of Health Access California.
Adjournment: President John gaveled the meeting closed at 1:30pm.
Thank you John Swentowsky (Swentowsky Photography) for the photos!