Weekly Meeting Photos
    Sean Dalgarn  -  Growing Veterans


November 23, 2020     28th  VIRTUAL MEETING

Opening :
Football Pool Grid - Seahawks vs Eagles Monday 11-30-2020   (Click Here)  (Click Here for game schedule)
Pre-Meeting Social Time
Book Report – Peter Theisen reported on the historical novel, Deep River, by Karl Mariantes, about a Finnish immigrant family who settles on the lower Columbia River in the early 19th century to make their fortune in the logging industry. (Deep River is an estuary of the lower Columbia, about ten miles from the river’s mouth on the Washington side.) It is a story about love, politics and economic struggles. Peter has a special affinity for the story line, as it somewhat mirrors that of his own family. Mariantes also wrote a semi-autobiographical book about his time in Viet Nam, Matterhorn.
Opening Welcome 
President Gary called our 28th virtual meeting to order at 12:30 PM with Sandee Lindhout ringing the bell. John Harris played a rousing piano version of America the Beautiful and Mike Plenkovich gave a heartfelt and inspiring Thanksgiving-themed invocation.
Club Announcements 
Major Project coordinator Jennifer Moehl gave an update on RCOB’s support of the Max Higbee Center. Five RCOB members were recognized for their exceptionally generous contributions to this project. In a video, the mother of a long time client of the Center shared her appreciation for the new facility.
Dick Tucker provided information about RCOB’s annual Salvation Army bell ringing, which will be on December 12 from 9-5 at the four local Haggen stores. An email sign up form has been sent. These will be outdoor locations. If you have concerns about social distancing, contact Dick for possible alternative opportunities to serve.
President Gary mentioned that those wishing for a longer Zoom social time at our weekly meetings may log on beginning at noon and/or after the meeting ends at 1:30 PM.
Board Action by Email November 19, 2020
The membership proposal for Vinson B. Latimore proposed by Doug Cole and Debbie Ahl to fill the classification “Healthcare – Senior Living”.  He is the CEO of Gibraltar Business Group He will be eligible for membership on December 7th unless written objection is received on or before December 5th mailed to Sandra Lindhout, 2200 Vining St., Bellingham, Wa.  98229
The Board approved the 2021-2022 Nominating Committee recommendations being announced by Chairman Past President Cathy Buckley as follows:
President:  Peter Theisen
President-Elect:  Paul Grey
VP-Program Chairman:  Doug Cole
Treasurer:  Steve Gray
Past President:  Gary Goldfogel
Board of Directors (2 years):  Shauna Naf & Felicity Dye will join John Pedlow and Steve Hettick
The Board approved the Tax 990 form completed for the 2019-2020 Rotary year at no charge to the club by member Susie Thomson.  Thomson & Co. PLLC has done this for the club for years.  Thank you Susie!!
Service Grant Awards:
The Service Fund Committee met on Nov. 12 to review 6 proposals received to date. All proposals were deemed meritorious by the committee and ultimately, they selected four projects to recommend for funding at this time. Proposals not selected at this time will remain in the pool for consideration in the next round of applicants in early 2021.
Organizations proposed, approved by the Board and the RCOB Foundation for funding at this time are:
  • Backpack Buddies ($1,000) - A program that provides weekend food bags for at-risk students in Whatcom County. 12 students will receive weekly food bags for one year. Sponsored by Teri Treat
  • Boys and Girls Clubs ($1,000) - This will provide 250 meals to kids enrolled in the club programs. Sponsored by Lynda Hinton
  • Growing Veterans ($1,000) - This is a therapeutic farming program for veterans. The funds will be used to purchase weed fabric for the garden beds. Sponsored by Brad Burdick
  • Salvation Army ($1,000) - This funding will provide $20 gift cards to be included in Thanksgiving food boxes for struggling families. 50 families will be served. Sponsored by Shauna Naf
2020-2021 Major Project announcement - Max Higbee Center is the unanimous selection of the committee. The Center started as grassroots effort led by educators, families and people with developmental disabilities who wanted quality recreation and social opportunities. Today, the Center serves over 400 individuals in Whatcom County through its welcoming social and recreation programs.  Jen Moehl and John Dunne will be leading the fundraising of this project. Members can donate from their tax-deferred accounts directly to RCOB without incurring a tax liability. Click Here for Donation Form
These programs also provide vital respite support to families. The stress and financial responsibility as a family caregiver can be extraordinary and lifelong. The services that Max Higbee Center staff provide are essential in supporting families to work, rest, and fulfill obligations while maintaining a safe and enriching environment for their family member with a disability.  Their new facility at 1400 N. State Street, currently under construction, will allow the Center to expand its program capacity to meet an urgent community need. Our contribution to the project will be funding the new recreation room, the largest and most actively used room in the new facility, which is to be named the Rotary Room.  Click here for further information.  
Blood Drive - Steve Ban reported that our blood drive will be open for the entire Rotary year, until June 30, 2021. We are participating, along with the other clubs in our Area G, in a District 5050 challenge against the other District Areas. He is encouraging friends and relatives to join in. Those who can't donate blood can donate plasma. Currently, the W. Bakerview office is the only donation location open in Whatcom County. Click Here for additional information. You must schedule your donation appointment on the eflyer in this link to make sure your donation is counted. If you have already given blood and didn’t follow these procedures, please contact Steve and he will make sure that your donation is counted.
The minimum age for donating blood is 16 and those 16 and 17 would need parent’s permission to participate. 
URGENT:  We are still looking for Website/Tattler sponsors for the next Rotary year starting July 1st.  It is a great opportunity to advertise your business and support Rotary.  $350.00 for the year.  Please check out the current sponsors on our website by going to on the home page.  If you "click" on a sponsor it will take you to their website.  It also shows up in the Tattler.  Contact Sandee if interested.  We have 2 spots remaining.
All Rotary meetings will be held Virtually on Zoom until at least January 1, 2021 due to Covid-19 social distancing.  You can look for an email from Sandee each week prior to the Monday 12:30 meeting (you can start  logging in at 12:15 for short socializing) with the link for that privacy protected meeting.  If you have not done so, please download the Zoom app on your computer (you need a camera and microphone on it), iPad or phone.  There is no cost to you.  If you do not have either, you can also call in.  On the invitation, there are US phone numbers you can call and enter the meeting ID number also indicated on the invitation. 
RCOB has now set up a Venmo account for ease in payment of Happy Bucks, Minister of Fun, Dues or donations to the club.  Our account is @RCOB-Bellingham.  If you do not have a Venmo account you can set up an account with your computer then download the app. on your phone (just Google "Venmo" and you will find all the information you need)  You then attach it to a debit or credit card (a fee on your end) or attach to your checking account at no cost.  Payment will be sent directly to the RCOB checking account. When you use it for the first time it may ask you the last 4 digits of the RCOB phone number which is 0282.   Give Sandee a call if you need help.  360-734-5532
Website and Phone App instructions:
Here is a tutorial on how to login for the first time.  (Click here)  In order to login you need to know your user name and password in your Clubrunner account.  The user name is Yourfirstname.Lastname.264 unless you have changed it.  Example: Sandra.Lindhout.264  The password is initially set by Clubrunner at 264 unless you have changed it.  Sandee can see your Username from my computer but not the password.  She can also change your password for you from her computer at your request if you run into problems.
Once you have originally created your User Name and Password you can download the ClubRunner Mobile app on your phone:                                                             
Here is a link for you to take a look at the app:

Please contact Sandee at 360-734-5532 or if you run into any trouble.
Former member, Dale Ring joined us again
Doug Cole introduced his guest Vinson Latimore of the Gibraltar Business Group. 
Paul Grey introduced our speaker, Sean Dalgren
Referencing three of the Rotary International "Areas of Interest” (Promoting Peace, Supporting Education and Growing Local Economies), Paul Grey introduced our speaker, Sean Dalgarn, executive director of Growing Veterans. Sean served in the USAF from 2005-2009 and was deployed to both Iraq and Kuwait. Growing Veterans is a non-profit organization, helping veterans to cope with PSTD and other issues affecting former service personnel, through organic farming. In Washington State, veterans are 8% of the population but account for 23% of suicides. So, the main goal of Growing Veterans is saving lives. Veterans need strong support systems, opportunities for professional development, a culture of peer support and a sense of purpose. The organization operates organic gardens in the Lynden area and on Whidbey Island, which provide “dirt therapy” to those veterans working at the garden. The garden also contributes to a strong local food system (they donated over 4,000 pounds of organic food to the Bellingham Food Bank this year), provides the benefit of sustainable agriculture by reducing soil depression, opens jobs in the farming industry and provides camaraderie and peer support for those veterans working in the field, which helps mend the disconnect between civilian and veteran populations. There is also a formal peer support training program. Last year, the organization trained 126 Peer Supporters and also refers participating veterans to area Mental Health Therapists as needed. One of the more popular products the farm produces is El Fuego Pepper “Fire in the Hole” Hot Sauce. Bell Ringing organizer Dick Tucker will be giving one bottle to each Salvation Army bell ringer next month at a cost of $12 ea. Products such as hot sauce and honey may also be purchased on their website:
At the end of Sean's presentation, Paul presented, on behalf of the RCOB Service Fund, a check for $1,000 to Growing Veterans, which will be used to purchase weed fabric for the garden beds.
Covid Update:
Dr. Garrett Jeffrey reported that, similar to the rest of the country, Whatcom County is experiencing increasing numbers of people with positive COVID-19 tests and a resulting increase in hospitalized patients. None of those hospitalized has needed ICU care thus far. Garrett stated that PeaceHealth/St. Joseph Medical Center is preparing for the expected continued increase in hospitalized patients and feels confident that the hospital will have the capacity to meet that need. He, again, stressed the importance of everyone in our community following the CDC preventative guidelines, as well as the latest restrictions ordered by our governor, in order to flatten the curve of this latest COVID-19 surge.
Program Recordings:  We are now recording the speaker portion of our meetings:
Missed a meeting? Remember a great speaker but want to revisit the content? You can catch the recording on our Rotary Club of Bellingham YouTube page:
November Rotary Anniversaries - Thank you! 
Cathy Buckley
Member Since 2000
Thank you for 20 years of service! 
John Holtzheimer
Member Since 1969
Dick Tucker
Member Since 1986
Ken Culver
Member Since 1989
Stephanie Bowers
Member Since 2001
Paul Grey
Member Since 2001
Mike Diehl
Member Since 2003
John Moffat
Member Since 2014
Kim Perry
Member Since 2015
Shauna Naf
Member Since 2017
Kathie Hardy
Member Since 2019
John Mahoney
Member Since 2019
November Birthdays
  • Brian Griffin
  • John Holtzheimer
  • Bob Nicholl
  • Gary Goldfogel
  • Catherine Riordan
  • Peg Larson
  • Rud Browne
  • Greg Grant
  • Sandee Lindhout
Dec 14, 2020
"Who is ALICE in Whatcom County? Why do one in 3 households struggle to make ends meet?"
Dec 21, 2020
Bellingham Symphony Holiday performance
Dec 28, 2020
Holiday - New Years Holiday
Jan 18, 2021
Holiday - Martin Luther King Day
View entire list
Interested in being a sponsor?
Download the website sponsorship guide
Executives & Directors
President Elect
Executive Secretary
Vice President/Program Chair
Past President
Director/Vocational Service & Membership
Director/Community Service
Director/International & Youth Service
Director/Club Service & Meetings
Website Administer
Editor:  Steve Ban
Reporter:  Doug Cole
Invocation:  Mike Plenkovich
Greeter: Susie Thomson, President Gary and Sandee
AV:  Dominique Zervas and Rick Kaiser
Music:   John Harris's "America the Beautiful"
Minister of Fun:  Kirstin Hunt
Book Review:  Peter Theisen "Deep River" by Karl Mariantes