VIVA 2018
Save the date November 3, 2018 
Come as your favorite movie character or dress for the red carpet. 
Click the Oscar Night Logo below to go to the VIVA 2018 website
News Updates

Sherry Sim introduced our presenters, Steve Geil, Past President and Fundraising Chair of Cayucos Rotary, and Jim Brescia, County Superintendent SLO County Office of Education.

Steve began by telling us that he was looking for a project and heard about Rancho El Chorro. He was very impressed with what he saw when he toured the property
but realized a serious upgrading was needed. The property is 247 acres and the kids study under the shade of oak trees. Rancho El Chorro reaches over 10,000 young
people a year and focuses on Environmental Literacy. With help from various Rotary Clubs, the importance of high ethical standards, conflict resolution and the 4 Way
Test are an important part of the curriculum. By partnering with other Rotary Clubs, this project will enhance Rotary’s image and brand to a broad spectrum of young
people, their parents and grandparents. It will also bring hundreds of Rotarians together for a single purpose and, most of all, be FUN!

Jim explained that children are very literal when they are young. They start out being taught right and wrong. Later in life, this is challenged on a
daily basis by a constant bombardment from different mediums; musical lyrics, action movies, television shows,

video games, and peer pressure. Learning the Four-Way Test’s ethical standards of conduct early on, will better prepare them for the future, thereby benefitting society as

a whole. This is where Rotary comes in. There are various ways Rotary can partner in this project from providing $15,000 to build a yurt to $350—$500 for a bench or by joining with other Rotary clubs to adopt part of a project. As we have done for years and will continue to do for Camp Ocean Pines, this
is just one more way to get involved with helping the youth of California.

Thank you for a great presentation Steve and Jim.

Dennis White introduced his long-time friend, Bobby, telling us that he was the first person to start the community Thanksgiving Dinner in Cambria. He said that his job description is compassion.

Bob started off by telling us that he moved to Cambria in 1974 when Cambria was made up of ranchers, farmers, hippies and retirees. He recently started the Estero Bay Kindness Coalition after discovering that, in the Estero Bay area a large percentage of children are beneath the poverty level. These children receive free or reduced meals at their schools. For the most part, the school cafeteria is their primary source of nutrition all week. Unfortunately, many children go an entire weekend with little or no food with any nutrition.

In 2017, the group committed to filling 12 backpacks each week for students who were otherwise not going to be eating on the weekends. By the end of the school year, they were filling 40 backpacks each week. Each backpack includes breakfast, lunch and dinner, along with snacks, juice and milk, to help bridge the
gap over the weekend. This year, they have teamed up with the Cambria Connection to provide similar backpacks to students at Cambria Grammar School where 70% of the children are below the poverty level! And they are hoping to start a program where these same children can receive the backpacks during the summer when they are not getting lunch at school. They are calling this program Got Your Back.

Bob is asking for help to fight childhood hunger. Donations can be made to Cambria Connection (put “Got Your Back” on your check). To sponsor a child for a week, it is $12; for 1 month, $48; 1 semester, $228 and, for an entire school year, $456. They also accept donations of food including healthy cereal, evaporated milk, canned fruit, dry fruit, canned vegetables, canned chicken, tuna, beef, peanut butter, jelly, instant rice and boxed juice.

Thank you Bob for such an informative presentation.

Membership Chair Nancy McKarney began by reminding us that we are united in common goals and lifelong bonds.

MEMBERSHIP BASICS: Bring ‘em In, Make ‘em Comfy, Keep ‘em Happy.

AWARENESS: SHARE CLUB ACTIVITIES & ACCOMPLISHMENTS with Friends, Associates, Other Organizations; WEAR YOUR PIN & ROTARY APPAREL; HELP DISTRIBUTE ROTARY PUBLICATIONS: the Rotarian, Club Brochure, Event Flyers; INVITE A GUEST TO LUNCH: Family, Friend, Relative (Not all Guests Need Be 
Potential Members); BOAST: “PROUD MEMBER OF THE CAMBRIA ROTARY CLUB!” on Business Cards, Email Signature, Your Business Marketing Materials.

SHARE THE JOY!: LUNCH INVITATION; Special Interest Programs; Celebrations/Awards; Make Your Own Burger

Buffet! DETERMINE INTEREST LEVEL, Submit Proposal*, Invite Back, Regardless.

SEQUENCE: 1st lunch: YOU PAY FOR YOUR GUEST. Proposal Submitted by Sponsor. Board Classification Review & Notification to Members. 2nd Lunch: CLUB PAYS. Invite Potential Member back; Determine Applicant’s

Interest. 3rd Lunch: CLUB PAYS. Invited to Become a Member; Completes Membership Application. Orientation Meeting is Set Prior to Induction 4th Lunch: INDUCTION, CLUB PAYS.

ORIENTATION: NEW MEMBER MENTORS (Monitor & Guide - Encourage NEW MEMBER ACCLIMATION). Red Badge: Greeter, Committees, Board Meeting, Roster Madness, Projects... Help Get Em Involved! Encourage New Member to Join Your Table, Committee, Project... Don’t be shy, introduce yourself to the Red Badge.

BE INVOLVED!: NAME BADGES AT THE MEETING; Do us all the favor...Newbies & Seasoned; SHERIFF PIN CHECK AWARDS; MEMBER FACTOIDS; MIX IT UP NOW & AGAIN MEMBER DISCOVERY MINUTES; Business & Personal Interests, FINE FREE; JOIN A COMMITTEE (Committees & Board Meetings are open to ALL); Visit A Committee Meeting With No Commitment; BE PART OF SOMETHING SPECIAL; Be a RYLA Counselor, Pick-Up Trash, Set-Up/ Clean-Up Viva, Serve Beer at Chili Cook-Off, Walk in a Parade.....Dive in Beyond Friday’s Lunch; ENCOURAGE FEL- LOW MEMBERS TO JOIN YOUR FAVORITE COMMITTEE OR PROJECT! - Play together for more fun!

Bring em In • Make em Comfy • Keep em Happy


Thank you Nancy for such an informative and inspirational presentation.


Richard Torchia introduced Bohdi Hodges, former librarian at Cambria Grammar
School saying that, in his 40+ years working in school districts. He has had his share of
librarians. But, when he met Bohdi, he found someone doing great things. Bohdi explained that a parent had come to her saying that her children had never owned a book because of the cost. Bohdi decided to start a book exchange so kids could take books home during the summer. The program was so successful, she decided to ex- pand it year-round. In addition, the students are taught to respect books and care for
them so they can turn them back in in exchange for a new book.

Jill Southern thanked Rotary for helping to make the library the center of the school and for helping to promote literacy.

Richard Torchia, Youth Service and Miguel Sandoval, Community Service presented Bohdi and Jill with a check for $750. The club also presented a pile of books donate by our generous members.

Sherry Sim, Asst. DG and Pres of Rotary Club of Cayucos, introduced our District Governor, Sandi Schwartz. She described Sandi as the most personable, relatable person. She always has a big smile and a big heart and is not afraid to get dirty. Sandi has been a member of Rotary (Bakersfied East) since 1994 and was President in 2013/14, the year Bakersfield East was named Best Medium Size Club. She gained 7 members during her Presidential year, got a leadership award and attracted major donors. Sandi is a retired RN with 7 children and 11 grandchildren.

Sandi began by telling us how, when she as a Home Health Care nurse, she had to keep her lipstick in an ice chest because of the heat in Bakersfield.
She chose to join Bakersfield East because it had the oldest members and she saw them as possible future clients! She told us about a fellow club member whose wife committed suicide by drowning. Members of their club looked for her for 12 days before finally finding her body. She knew then that Rotary was where she needed to be. She quoted Sir Clem Renouf who said “Rotary takes ordinary people and gives them opportunities to do more with their lives than they ever dreamed possible”. Sandi experienced this first hand while walking the streets of India in 2004 with Bruce and Jane Howard for National Immunization Day.

District 5240 extends from North of Kern County, East to China Lake and South to Thousand Oaks. As of July, there are 72 clubs with a total of 3,249 members.

DG Sandi explained that she does not do her job alone. She has a wonderful staff consisting of Jacque Jans, her “Chief of Stuff”, Scott Phillips, Chief Operating Officer and, Melinda Westfahl, who handles the District calendar and scheduling. She, by the way is Mike Griffin’s sister. As DG, she reports to John Matthews, RI Director and RI President, Barry Rassin. A bit of trivia: John Matthews, who is retired from COSTCO, told her that parking spaces at COSTCO are wider than most other parking lots because the shopping carts are so much wider than others. Who knew?

Sandi puts a lot of emphasis on club retention. We have to be a club people want to be a part of. She also encouraged everyone to consider attending the 2018 District Conference in Bakersfield on October 5-6.

DG Sandi Schwartz presented Monty & Julia with a Major Donor Level 1 Award and People of Action Awards to Bonnie Cameron and Linda Sherman.

At the end of the presentation, President certificate showing a donation of $500 to Polio Eradication

ulia Rice gave us a fascinating presentation about Nigeria, the home country of Ore Okubadejo,

the exchange student our club is sponsoring and who will be staying with the Rice’s and Porters during her stay. She explained that Ore is a member of the Yoruba Tribe which consists of 40 million people, about 21% of the population of Nigeria. Ore will be arriving here August 15 and will be leaving behind her mom, a Rotarian, and 4 siblings.

Some interesting facts about Nigeria:

The Fine Master (Alas...there was no time for our favorite Fine Master)

Nigeria has the highest rate of twin births with 158 twins born per 1,000 people. One half of the population is under 15 years wold.

The name, Nigeria, comes from the River Niger. Nigeria is multi-cultural with 500 ethnic groups and multi-lingual with 600 distinct languages.

Religions: Muslim 50%, Christian 40%, indigenous beliefs 10% Nigeria is the most populist black country on earth.
Nigeria is home to the 2nd largest movie industry in the world.

Bruce Howard plus Gerry & Paula Porter told us about some of the experiences they have had in Nigeria.

Thank you all for this interesting program. We are definitely looking forward to meeting Ore and getting to know more about her and her country.

VIVA Chair, Mary Ann Carson, reminded us that the theme this year is Oscar Night! And she pointed to the little Oscar statues on our tables. She also reminded us that this is our major fundraiser and we need EVERYONE to get involved! Ron Castadio will be the Master of Ceremonies and Bob Kasper will be the Auctioneer.

Sue Oberholtzer is handling the Grand Raffle and has $17,200 worth of tickets to be sold. So far she has collected only $2300. So, please get out there and ask your friends, neighbors, family members, strangers on the street to buy a ticket for this great raffle.

Patty Griffin is in charge of Sponsors and has already knocked it out of the park! Pacific Premier Bank (Phillip Sullivan) and Sydney Peak Stone (Christel Chesney) have signed on as $2500 sponsors and Patty is working on another 8 $1,000 sponsors. Way to go Patty!

Judy Schuster reported that she has already sold 2 tables for VIVA! You too could sell a table.

Miguel Sandoval announced that the menu will include salad, prime rib with potatoes and veggies and a dessert of cheesecake with raspberry sauce. Eggplant parmigiana will be available for those not wanting the beef. He will also be arranging for show tunes to play during dinner and a variety of popular songs for dancing after dinner.

Linda Sherman told us that tickets for the event are available on-line at or you can purchase by check (made out to RCC Foundation). Tickets are $85 each. She also told us that, so far, we have collected 2 bottles of wine. At this time last year we had 200! So, please considering donating or asking for donations of wine.


Christel Chesney told us that the decorations will be “Simply Elegant”. And, we know Christel means what she says. Cannot wait to see the magic she performs at the Vet’s Hall. Suggested dress code is either elegant or movie character.

Bob Kasper shared that we have a Live Auction donation of 2 nights at the Cass House with dinner for 2. He would love to pair that with something like a limo to take the guests wine tasting or something else that would make this donation even more special. He also asked us to think about a friend with a fun job that could provide an experience (visit to a movie set, walk-on part on a TV show, batting practice with the pros).

Julie Jenkins explained that we are hoping to have 30 Silent Auction items this year. She asks that donation forms (available on-line and at our weekly meetings) be filled out and given to her along with a photo of the donation item. She would appreciate not receiving the actual item until Sept. 14 due to lack of room for storing said items. Donations of wine and/or gift certificates can be given to Linda Sherman at anytime.

Nancy McKarney has created business cards for VIVA and asked that everyone take some to put on counters of local businesses as a way to get the word out about the event. They will be available at our Friday meetings.


Bob Putney introduced Fire Captain, Emily Torlano who has been with the Cam- bria Fire Department since 2000. She received her paramedics license in 2004 and was promoted to Captain in 2015. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Fire Safety Administration and is working on her Masters in Organizational Leadership.

Emily began by introducing Michael Castellanos, a Cambria native and Engineer with the Department. Engineers are required to be certified fire fighter as well as Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT’s). She also introduced Reserve Fire- fighter, Leo Salas.

The Cambria Fire Department was established in 1886 and is the 2nd oldest in San Luis Obispo County. In addi- tion to fighting fires, the department provides advanced life support, ocean and cliff rescue, hydrant mainte- nance (there are 460 of them) as well as rescuing people locked out of their cars, changing batteries in smoke and CO2 detectors and fire weed abatement. The Department recently lost a grant that enabled them to hire additional personnel but they are working on a new grant.

Training requirements have gotten much stricter. There are fewer people willing to be reserve firefighters (part- time) or volunteers because they are required to complete 1700 hours of training. As a result, there are only 12

reserves on the books.

Emily also reminded everyone to register with NIXLE to get community alerts and notifications. To register, simply text your zip code to the number 888-777. She also brought Cambria Area Fire Evacuation Plan brochures for anyone who would like one.

When asked why so many personnel respond to 911 calls, Emily explained that the fire engine must be “at the ready” in case of emergency so the 3 personnel assigned to each engine need to stay together. She also advised anyone noticing cars parked in such a way as to block access to a street, to contact the fire de- partment. They will send someone out to have the car(s) moved.

Fire hydrants need to be maintained on a regular basis because they can rust making it nearly impossible to operate. In an emergency situation, every minute counts so it is important that hydrants be maintained, although maintaining 460 hydrants is no easy task.

We actually went past our usual ending time because it was such a great presentation and there were so many questions. Thanks to Emily and her crew for taking the time to tell us about the Cambria Fire Department.

Janet Meyers introduced our speaker, Dr. Alex Erickson. Doctor Alex, along with his wife and fellow veterinarian, Casey Erickson, purchased Cambria Veterinary Clinic in January 2016. Dr. Alex is a second generation veterinarian, his father having been practicing for over 40 years. Alex literally grew up in the veterinary world since his dad’s clinic was right next door to their home. He jokes he was cleaning kennels soon after learning to walk. Alex attended Kansas State University and obtained his Doctorate from UC Davis Veterinary School in 2008. It was while at Davis that he met his future wife, Casey. The are the proud parents of 4 year old Nora and 2 year old Thomas.

Dr. Alex began his talk by inviting anyone with questions to feel free to interrupt
him. A number of our pet loving members did just that. Alex explained that cats
are usually considered seniors at 8 years while dogs depend on the breed. Arthritis is probably the most com- mon ailment in senior pets. Common symptoms include more sleeping than normal, pet stops jumping up to greet you, has trouble jumping into the car, going up or down stairs and doesn’t want to be pet (a sign of pain).

He explained that a Belgium study on senior pets showed that pets who had not seen a vet in over a year can be found to be suffering from numerous ailments that could have been prevented.

He also told us that there is no proof that grain-free diets are beneficial to pets. Fewer than 1% of dogs have grain allergies. He encouraged pet owners to look for foods that indicate they are good for your pet’s age group. Asked about cat food, he said cats do benefit from moisture so wet food or dry food wettened with water or broth is encouraged.

Thank you Dr. Alex for a fun (he has a great sense of humor) and informative talk.


Emphasize Service Above Self

Program Suggestions

Create full year Club Calendar.

Programs tied to Monthly Theme where possible.

Give more information to member about programs.

Ease workload on Program Chair, who will keep the calendar up-to-date as Programs change.




President Mike’s Step Down Party

Everyone turned a wee bit Irish in honor of our departing president. Our

club’s motto was on full display throughout the room: If it ain’t fun, it ain’t Rotary! And there was no lack of blarney in the room!

Kudos to everyone involved in this “production”. What a fantastic send-off for President Mike. Otis, as producer, director and choreographer did a stellar job. Behind the scenes, Heidi, Kate and Karen had their hands in everything. You had everyone in tears laughing.

Thanks to our intrepid photographers Elaine Beckham, Patty Griffin & Sue Oberholtzer for the photos and to Linda Sherman for providing the music for the evening.

click the Title at the top of the page "President Mike's Step Down Dinner" for links to photos and puppet theater



Janet Meyers introduced our speaker, Anne Wyatt, executive director of HomeShareSLO, a housing policy planner and former County of SLO planning commissioner. Anne enjoyed life in Cambria while operating the Bridge Street Inn from 1997 to 2011.

Anne began by telling us that HomeShareSLO is a local non-profit that facilitates home
share matches between those with an extra room and those looking for affordable
housing. The organization was started in 2017 as a service to seniors living alone in San
Luis Obispo County. There are over 11,000 single seniors in the county and probably just
under 500 in Cambria alone. The average income for single senior women is $1100 a
month. The program helps to share the ideas of home sharing, brings people and rooms together and performs extensive background checks on renters. A minimum income is required for home seekers and there is a multi-part matching process. Why home share? Besides the extra income, it can provide companionship, security, community building and likely allow you to stay in your home longer. For more information, go to

It was a very interesting presentation. Thank you Anne.

Pres. Mike, as one of his last chores as President, took time to thank a number of people who helped make his year as President a successful one by gifting them with a copy of Be Mindful & Stress Less by Gina M. Biegel. This book was ded- icated to Mike’s nephew, Tomas, who committed suicide a couple of years ago. This is a topic on many people’s minds lately so this book is very meaningful.

Thanks went to PE Roger (probably for taking over so Mike could finally rest), Secretary Julia Rice, Treasurer Bonnie Cameron (who received a
standing ovation for her many years as chief bean counter); Otis Archie, PR; Donna Crocker, Family of Rotary who said she hopes we don’t get sick because she like writing happy notes; Ron Perry, Sergeant at Arms for ringing him in every week; Janet Meyers, for providing great programs all year; Mary Ann Carson, Community Service; Bob Putney, TRF, and Richard Torcia, Youth Services. He will catch up with a few others, who were not in attendance, at the next meeting.

Pres. Mike ended the meeting with a quote from JK Rowling, “There are some things you can’t share without ending up liking each other”. A wise man, our President!

Janet Meyers introduced Michael Bradley, Chief Executive Officer of the California Mid State Fair. He is a 4th generation Californian and provides a unique combination of fairs and exposition management, non-profit leadership and business development; he’s de- veloped an extensive background in agriculture and hands-on experience in marketing and community relations. Most recently he has directed the Arizona National Livestock Show in Phoenix as the CEO.

Mike told us that the Fair began having entertainment in 1969 with Buck Owens as the
first artist. This year’s entertainment will include some of the biggest names in the industry including Luke Bryan, Demi Lovato, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw, Eric Church and Pitbull, to name a few.

50% of attendees come from outside a 50 mile radius and 440,000 people attend annually. Because of this, it was decided to adopt a new slogan, “America’s Favorite Fair”.

The mission of the California Mid State Fair Heritage Foundation is to preserve and enrich the heritage of the 16th District Agricultural Association and showcase agricultural industries to the community; to offer support to the 4-H and FFA projects and create agricultural education opportunities; maintain a standard of excellence in the facilities and create capital improvement opportunities and to serve as an arm of the California Mid-State Fair that can accept charitable donations. A new building, the Paso Robles Pavilion, is a 100,000 square foot building which was a gift from the Heritage Foundation. The building will only house events related to the Fair and agri- culture, but can serve as shelter during natural disasters.

One of the main goals of the Fair is to give kids a learning experience. Many under the age of 40, according to Mike, believe milk comes from the grocery store. California produces more food than Iowa and Texas combined. Future Farmers of America (FFA) is the largest single youth organization in the country with over 85,000 students in California FFA clubs alone!

At the end of his presentation, Mike advised us that 2 tickets to any non-sold out performance, either for the 2018 or 2019 Fair would be donated to out club! Than you Mike!


We welcomed back former club member Maleika Lacey who told us about the health benefits of Essential Oils. She is a representative of dōTERRA, a company built on the mission of sharing therapeutic-grade essential oils with the world. Having seen for themselves the incredible benefits that can be had from using these precious resources, a group of health-care and busi- ness professionals set out to make this mission a reality.

Maleika also told us about the dōTERRA Healing Hands Foundation® which
brings healing and hope to the world by providing global communities with the tools needed to become self- reliant.

Through projects addressing the needs of microcredit lending; access to healthcare, education, sanitation and clean water; and fighting child sex-trafficking, individuals are empowered and lives are changed. Join us in these efforts.

The dōTERRA Healing Hands Foundation is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organiza-

tion. dōTERRA International provides for all overhead and administrative costs of the foundation, ensuring that 100 percent of all donations go directly to those receiving aid.

You can get more information about dōTerra at


Community Service: Chair, Mary Ann Carson told us about the committee determines where
the donations will go based on the following criteria: does the community want it, does the com-
munity need it and does the community support it. This year, the donations were given to Youth
Support: Sober Grad ($400); CUHS Bronco Boosters ($550); CYAA ($250); 5th Grade Field Trip to
Yosemite ($250); Cub Scouts ($250); Cambria Education Foundation ($400); CASA ($400); ART Beat
Homework Club ($1,000); Santa Lucia Middle School Leadership Class ($100). For Veteran Support:
American Legion Flag Memorial/Fireworks ($250); Operation Holiday Package ($250). Other Community Support Projects included CERT ($550); Feed the Needy ($1,000); Maintenance of Rotary Trash Can ($360); Special Olym- pics/Tip A Cop (300); Peace Poles at Vet’s Hall and each of the schools ($1,500). So, if anyone asks you what Ro- tary does for the community, let them know that we have donated over $8,000 to organizations and groups dedi- cated to making life better for all of us. And, if you have any ideas for donation that you would like to see made, bring them to the Community Service meeting. The group meets in the lounge at the Lodge at 11:00 on the 2nd Friday of the month.

Youth Services: Chair, Richard Torchia spoke about the 4-Way Test Essay Contest for7th grad- ers. About 40 essays were submitted this year and cash awards were given to the 3 best essays. In addition, 6-$1,000 scholarships were given to graduating students at Coast Union High School this year and 5 students were sent to RYLA this year. He was pleased to advise us that Ken Cooper and a few of his friends are donating the funds to send an additional 4 students to RYLA next year!

Vocational Service: Chair, Joe Morrow said Rotary began by people getting together
to talk about what they could do to make the world better and to use their skills to help.
The Vocational Service committee is actually a committee of 2, according to Joe, and
without that second committee member, a lot of what was done this year would not have
happened. He asked Otis Archie, his partner in crime, to come up to take a bow. This
committee of 2 organized the Back to School Breakfast for teachers and staff of Coast
Unified, organized the Interact students to serve dinner with flair to attendees of VIVA and put on a great Chamber Mixer. Joe will be passing the torch to Laudon Rowan on July 1. Willing to help Laudon? Let her know. She would sure appreciate the assistance.

Membership: Chair, Chris Cameron reminded us of the importance of membership. To be effective, a Rotary club needs members. We all need to look around at friends, neighbors, members of other groups you belong to and co-workers to see if any of them might make a good member of our club and invite them to a meeting. John Hewko, General Secretary of Rotary International said “Our organizational priority is, and must be, membership...without members, there would be no Rotary. If we can achieve so much with the clubs and members we currently have, what could we do if we had more?” Chris will be passing the gavel to Nancy McKarney next year. If you have ideas for recruiting new members, be sure to share them with Nancy.

Jane Howard, International Service Chair passing the leadership of to Gerry Porter next year. The main goal of the committee it to offer
assistance to projects that are sustainable following the principle of “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." Some of the sustainable projects the committee took on this year were: Project Peanut Butter in Sierra Leone ($2100 towards a global grant). This project teaches people to make a ready-to-use therapeutic peanut butter-like substance to treat SAM (severe acute malnutrition), the single largest cause of child death in the world today. Lords Meade Vocational College near Jinja, Uganda, with the aim of providing quality post-primary comprehensive education for disadvantaged children of Uganda and surrounding countries. This year we sponsored two students ($1,325). Shelter Box provides emergency shelter and tools for families around the world have been made homeless by natural disaster and conflict. Our club was proud to be designated as a Bronze Shelter Box Hero Club for donating $1,000 a year for the past 3 years. We have partnered with the Rotary Club of Newbury Park to provide $3500 to a Mobile Library in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. The library will be dedicated in September, with Bruce and Jane Howard attending to join in the celebration! We also partnered with Rotary Club of Newbury Park to provide training and equipment for a cancer ward in Calcutta, India, and are working on a donation for a pediatric hospital in Bucharest, Romania. And we donated $1000 to a grad school in New Zealand that is offering a Peace and Conflict Resolution Graduate Degree to students such as former Cambrian, Alexandra Scrivner. There is a lot more this committee has done but, since space is limited here, feel free to sit in on a committee meeting to hear about the many projects they are working on. They meet the 3rd Friday of the month at 11:00 a.m. in the lounge at Cambria Pines Lodge.

Public Relations: Chair, Otis Archie makes sure the word gets out about the amazing things our
club is doing. Otis submits information about VIVA to the Rotarian Magazine and works with the
Cambrian to get information about the event out to the public. He is also gathering information for a
new magazine, put out by the publishers of the Rotarian Magazine, that center on a single district
within Rotary so our club’s efforts can be highlighted. Other members of the Public Relations
Committee work on social media (promoting our club via social media) and keeping our website up to
date. If you have any information you would like Otis to know about or if you would like to help out with public relations, contact Otis.

The Rotary Foundation (TRF): Chair, Bob Putney explained that The Rotary Foundation transforms our donations into service projects that change lives both close to home and around the world. During the past 100 years, the Foundation has spent $3 billion on life-changing, sustainable projects. TRF is dedicated to six things: promoting peace, fighting disease, providing clean water, sanitation and hygiene, saving mothers and children, supporting education and growing local economies. TRF was established to put money into the bank where it will gain interest which is returned to our club. Charity Navigator has rated TRF as a 4 Star Charity, their highest level. 91% of donations are spent directly on programs. Bob thanked everyone for their donations to TRF and presented Elaine Beckham with a Paul Harris + 4 Pin. Paul Harris pins are awarded to Rotarians who give $1,000 or more to the Annual Fund, PolioPlus, or an approved Foundation grant . Congratulations, Elaine!

The Cambria Rotary Club Foundation: Chair, Mike Griffin thanked club members who have donated to the Club Foundation by either becoming a Neal Jensen Fellow and joined the Neal Jensen Circle. Mike applauded his better half, Patty Griffin, for all her amazing and awesome work on behalf of the Cambria Rotary Foundation. The Object of Rotary is to “encourage and foster the ideal of service as a basis of worthy enterprise.” Rotary is a service organization. Since 1910, the Rotary Motto has been “Service Above Self.”

Rotary strives to achieve it’s objective of “Service Above Self” through activities in five primary areas. These are often referred to as the Five Avenues of Service.

If any of the Avenues of Service covered at the meeting sound interesting to you, contact the chair. They would love to have more help and input from fellow Rotarians. And, making a difference feels so darn good!

Tom Tierney, Gerry Porter, and Tim Carr installed the Rotary Club of Cambria Peace Pole at the Vets Hall on Saturday, May 5th.


Cambria Rotary Club RYLA coordinator Jane Howard began with a brief overview: RYLA stands for Rotary Youth Leadership Awards. CUHS Counselor Cheryl Seay helps with student selection, alerting students to application deadlines and arranging interview dates and times. Most students are juniors when they apply and attend. This year there were 5 juniors and 1 sophomore from Coast Union H.S. RYLA is conducted for 4 days at Camp Yomah in Ojai. Cristel Chesney, Laudon Rowen and Elaine Beckham drove the students to and from the camp. Jane praised the leadership of the camp: Darin Arrasmith is the chairperson and our own Nancy McKarney is his very capable administrator. Jane brought Tim Carr up to the podium to be recognized as the 2018 Most Outstanding RYLA

Counselor. About 250 attended RYLA this spring, April 19-22. Five RYLA graduates attended the Rotary luncheon. Student Testimonies about RYLA:

ZACK AZEVEDO---He was worried about a specific student ending up in his cabin. As it turned out, this particular student was a terrific person and lots of fun.

TORI EHLERS---She learned that 20 seconds of confidence such as smiling to someone can be life changing. In her Diversity class she learned that everyone was unique, and she learned how to reach out to fellow students.

FIONA CLOWARD---She learned that it was physically impossible to complete the obstacles of the Ropes Course without relying on, and having trust in, your fellow students. She learned that it was important to take the time to listen to other students’ stories. And she learned not to give up on her


CESAR HERNANDEZ---He felt shy about mixing with new people at first. He tried to hang out with his friends the first day. But by the evening of the first day he found himself bonding with some new friends on his color team and in his cabin. He learned from Camp Director Darin to “take off your cool card” and be yourself. Cesar especially enjoyed the goal setting class and will use the notes he wrote in his binder. He concluded that the four days of RYLA were the best time of his life.

EMMA SISON—Emma said she could describe RYLA in one word---REFRESHING Emma admitted that she started at camp with a bad attitude. At first she worried that no one she knew was on her color team or in her cabin. But then she bonded with two new friends who are still in communication. She was sad to return home from RYLA, but realized a responsibility to share this inspirational experience with those who did not attend. She felt that the RYLA experience can bring out your “inner leader”.

Congratulations to the 2018 RYLA Graduates!

The purpose of the Four-Way Test Speech Contest is to foster ethics in everyday life, as well as in business. The contest is designed to introduce middle school students to the Rotary principles of ethics and service, and to involve local Rotary Clubs with the youth of their communities. It also is aimed at encouraging young people to learn to express themselves well in public. In nearly every profession, the ability to express one’s thoughts and ideas clearly, concisely, and persuasively is an important skill.

This year, about 40 students submitted essays. Richard Torchia, Youth Services Chair, along with Joan Broadhurst, Gail Ortenburger and Sue Robinson reviewed each of the essays and selected the 3 best.

If one of the goals of the Four Way Test Essay Contest is to encourage young people to learn to express themselves in public, it appears to have worked in this case. These three students, led off by a funny, charming and well- spoken and 7th grader, Eli Linn and followed by two of his articulate classmates, Zaul Vasquez and Shanyra Cardenas. It was a pleasure to welcome these three local students to our meeting.


Janet Meyers introduced our speakers, Dr. Laurie Moyer-Mileur, a Registered Dietician and research professor at University of Utah School of Medicine and Barbara Bronson Gray, Vice President of Cambria Community Healthcare District, registered nurse and managing editor at WebMd, among other accomplishments.

Laurie began by telling us that she is legally blind (then proceeded in telling a few blind jokes (we need this lady in Rotary) and was recently approved for a guide dog. She explained that the process of getting medical care to Cambria was a 6-step process:

#1 Define the need: It was determined that Cambria, San Simeon and the surrounding area are medically underserved. For our population of 7500 people 4-6 full-time caregivers are needed. 80% of respondents to a survey on healthcare said more options are needed.

#2 Options Available to Meet Needs: When the Community Health Center was approached about providing more medical personnel, the result was actually a decrease of 2 doctors. Dr. Gong only works 4 days a week and Dr. Dave Griffith provides house call services only for severely ill, immobile patients. So we reached out to Tenet and Dignity Health.

#3 Infrastructure: Tenet agreed to provide services but needed space. First Physicians Partners signed a lease with John & Renee Linn for the full downstairs portion of the medical building on Main St. 

Permits have been pulled and a September opening is planned.

#4 Expect Resistance: Barbara told us they were surprised when they met with resistance, saying “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”. She told us of someone who actually contacted First Physicians Partners urging them not to come to Cambria.

#5 Expect Problems: The original site selected for a medical facility was the old Heritage Oaks building but that did not work out. After signing the Lease with the Linn’s, the permit process was held up due to a new computer system slowing down the process.

#6 Communication: It is important to keep everyone up to date, listen to their stories and focus on the end zone. The new facility will have a full time doctor plus staff, will have extended hours and Saturday hours to accommodate working people. There has recently been interest in setting up an Urgent Care facility her also.

Thanks to both Laurie and Barbara for this interesting and important presentation and for all the work they have done to bring healthcare to Cambria.

Roger Robinson shared information he received from the PETS conference he attended in February. Some of the key points:

  •   In an attempt to better explain what Rotary is all about RI has come up with a new “elevator
    speech” that can be used the next time someone asks you “what is Rotary?: “We’re a
    leadership organization of local business, professional and civic leaders. We meet regularly, get to know each other, form friendships, and through that, we’re able to get things done in this community”.

  •   More people join Rotary for friendship and local impact than any other reason.

  •   Rotary’s #1 priority is membership! Without members there is no Rotary. Clubs may now offer associate, corporate (business), family or other types of membership and our club will be looking into a number of options to increase our membership, integrating new members into the club and providing training where needed.

  •   RI also recommends forming committees (rather than assigning just a single person) for Service, Membership, Publicity, TRF, Grants and Awards, joining Avenues of Service, which already has committees.

  •   When Avenues of Service makes a donation or participates in an activity, it is important that a photo be taken (when possible) and that photo be posted on the District website, social media, etc.

  •   RI also recommends varying our meetings. Some suggestions include, rather than having a speaker every week, alternate the speakers with a vocational talk, a Rotary information session and committee updates. It was also suggested that, for months with 5 Fridays, have an evening social hour at a local bar or restaurant and encourage everyone to bring a guest.

  •   Council on Legislation: Some changes announced are: Attendance: Clubs can relax or tighten rules on attendance; Rule of 85: Rotarians can be excused from attendance if the combined total of years of membership plus age equals 85, with years of membership total at least 20. Fees: Clubs can relax/tighten admission fees. RI dues may increase annually; Meetings: a minimum of 2 are required each month and the club can decide where and when; Magazines: 2 Rotarians living at the same address can request just one copy of the Rotarian Magazine.

Dr. Jim Brescia introduced our speaker, Daniel Williams, RPM Supervisor, Grizzly Youth Academy.

Daniel Williams explained that Grizzly Youth Academy (GYA) is a partnership between the California Na onal Guard and the Grizzly Challenge Charter School. For youth between the ages of 16 and 18 who have dropped out of high school, or are at-risk of dropping out, we offer a highly-structured environment that promotes leadership, cooperayion, and academic skills, while building self-esteem, pride, and confidence.

Cadet Raul, a 17 year old from Santa Maria, told us that, while in public school, he had a grade point average of 0.17. He did
not care about school and had no life goals. He was constantly scared and nervous. When his guidance counselor told him
about Grizzly, he decided to give it a try. He explained how hard it was, at first, getting up at 5 a.m. and jogging to class but
the program has changed his life. He said he was concerned about returning home after graduation, worried that things
might be different, but he said he soon realized that the only thing that changed was himself. He is proud to say his gpa is now at 3.8 and he is looking forward to a promising future.

Matching cadets with a caring, responsible mentor is one of the most important components of the Grizzly Youth Academy experience. The mentor acts as an anchor of support to the cadet during their 5 1⁄2 month residential phase and continues supporting him/her throughout their 12 month post-residential phase (a total of 17 1⁄2 months). The mentor is key to a graduate’s successful transition to employment and/or continuing education. An established goal for all students is to complete a My Action Plan (MAP). This life plan is a guide for the Mentor and the Cadet to follow after graduation 


Mentoring responsibilities are fully communicated in the mandatory one-day Mentor Training session (see dates below). The Grizzly Youth Academy o ers this training mul ple mes each class, only requiring mentors to a end ONE session. If anyone is interested in mentoring a cadet, contact Grizzly Youth Academy at 1-800-926-0643 or go on line to h ps://

DG John Weiss introduced our speaker, Deepa Willingham, a naturalized citizen of the United States, who was born and brought up in Calcutta, India where she obtained her primary and secondary education under the stewardship of Mother Teresa, who was her teacher, undergraduate degree at the University of Calcutta and came to the United States in 1964 to pursue graduate degrees. She is an active Rotarian and she is the Founder/Chair of PACE Universal. Through PACE Universal and the Piyali Learning Center (PLC) she is
meticulously “selling” the concept of allowing girls to be educated instead of being married in early childhood or being sent to work, or being sold for sex trade. Through her efforts and use of personal resources she is determined to make PLC a poverty eradication proto-type model that others can duplicate to heal a hurting planet. John named her “Trouble Maker” and Jane Howard lovingly refers to her as OCIW (one crazy Indian woman).

Deepa painted a troubling picture for us but, thanks to her work, we also saw hope in that picture. She explained that the planet is in trouble. There are 7.5 billion people in the world and by 2050 there will be 10 billion. One in five of them will be illiterate unless something is done. Poverty cannot lead to peace. More people in the world have cell phones than have toilets. 62 million girls are not allowed to go to school. 2 million children die in armed conflicts. 300,000 children in the United States are at risk. There are between 20 and 30 million slaves in the world. 60% of the world’s hungry are woman. Every 7 seconds a young girl becomes a child bride. Educating women adds 12 trillion dollars to the economy.

Piyali Learning Center, which was founded by Deepa in 2003, is a fully equipped and environmentally sustainable school for more than 200 girls ranging from nursery to 12th grade. Each student receives a state-approved academic education, books and supplies, uniforms, breakfast and lunch, hygiene kits, medical care and life skills training. On this three-acre site, girls have access to computer labs and large classrooms where they study subjects from math and English to dance. Many students face danger at home. So we created Safe Abode for Education (SAFE), which provides on-campus housing for girls at high risk of abuse, exploitation or being sold. SAFE allows them to complete their education while living a life free from fear. For a donation of $375 a year, girls receive 2 meals a day and an education.

Sadly, explained Deepa, young girls in both San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties are also at risk of human trafficking. She is currently working on creating safe houses in our county. Deepa and PACE Universal, whose mission is to end trafficking and abject poverty through education, particularly of girls and women, will be holding a fundraiser, Bollywood Night 2.0, on April 29. For more information, go to: htpp:// uploads/2018/02/Bollywood-Night-2.0-Invita on.2018-op mized.pdf

To view the video Deepa showed us of some of the girls at Piyali Learning Center, go to: h ps:// watch?v=3j8ztlRH9lQ& . Considering these girls are from a rural community in India where girls tend to their families, work as laborers or domestic servants, endure abuse, including being trafficked or married off as children, this video will inspire you.

“We know that if you can get girls into schools and keep them there, you can change the course of a nation.”
~ Queen Rania Al-Abdullah of Jordan.

Dr. Joe gave a fascinating presentation about some ancient teachings that remain relevant to maintaining balance in our lives. He reminded us of some lessons learned over thousands of years regarding the importance of:

  • Feeling safe

  • Experiencing passion and creativity

  • Using our energy carefully

  • Living from the heart

  • Healthy communication

  • Gaining and utilizing wisdom

  • Clearing the mind

  • And perhaps leave us with a reminder to pause and be in awe of this thing called life – and all that it offers

Bob Kasper stepped up to be the auctioneer for the Interact Bake Sale. John Ehlers bought a strawberry cake for $150 and donated it back to sell again. Otis re-gifted a chocolate and vanilla cake he had bought for $100. Chris Cameron and Cynthia Neer joined together to purchase a cake with lots of candy for $150. Laudon Rowan bought a cake for $110. Michael O’Sullivan bought a Mexican chocolate cake for $200. Joan Broadhurst bought an orange cake for $210. Miguel Sandoval bought a vanilla and chocolate cake for $120. Socorro Simons bought a $400 chocolate strawberry cake which she donated to O s. The top buyer of the day was Christel Chesney who bought a carrot cake for $450 and four cupcakes for $100.0 each. Gerry Porter reported that over $3500 was earned for the Interact Club from this bake sale.


Jim Easton, of the Rotary Passport Club of the Central Coast, told us that the Passport Club now has 23 members and they are 100% Paul Harris members! They average over 100 hours service per member. He then introduced today’s speaker: Abe Lincoln (the newest member of the Passport Club). Abe graduated from Cal Poly and is currently Executive Director of the SLO Noor Foundation.

Abe Lincoln began working with the SLO Noor Founda on, the only fully licensed clinic in SLO
County, because he was inspired by Dr. Ahmad Nooristani. Dr. Nooristani was born in
Afghanistan. After his father died, his mother smuggled he and his brother to Pakistan and eventually to the United States where he went on to get his medical degree. He was passionate about giving back so he set out to provide free health care to every uninsured person in SLO County. He has raised enough funds to build a primary care clinic, a vision clinic and a dental clinic in San Luis Obispo and recently opened a primary care clinic in Paso. All services are provided free of charge for uninsured adults in SLO County. Dr. Nooristani has convinced the majority of medical professionals in SLO County to volunteer me to this cause. They depend on grants and donations. You can get more information about the SLO Noor Foundation at


Barbara Burns introduced our speaker, Dr. Tom Neuhaus, Cal Poly Professor Emeritus and co-founder of Mama Ganache Artisan Chocolates, Inc., who spoke about his plan for social justice in the chocolate industry. Dr. Neuhaus explained that most of the chocolate we eat is made by African child labor, many of these children are virtually slaves. In 2006, Dr. Neuhaus co-founded Project Hope and Fairness, with the goal of creating a chocolate industry which does not rely on child labor and, yet returns fair profits to local cocoa farmers and chocolate manufacturers. He’s focused on three cocoa-rich countries: The Ivory Coast, Ghana and Cameroon. 

In The Ivory Coast, Tom selected 7 villages for what he calls his Seven Villages Project, bringing cocoa processing facilities and agricultural equipment to these communities. 

Tom is seeking Board members to help with the success of Project Hope and Fairness 

President Mike presented District Governor, John Weiss, with a club pin. He told us that John joined Rotary in 2001, became Morro Bay Rotary President in 2009/10, has been an instructor at PETS, Youth chair, has brought in 50+ new members and chartered the 1st Interact Club in Morro Bay.

DG Weiss began his presentation by awarding a Paul Harris Service Fellow to Bob Putney in recogniti on of his many services to not only our local club but the District, International and Polio. Congratulat ons to Bob.

DG John then told us that, after a rather large 50,000 person survey, the two most important points of Rotary membership were: 1) Family; and, 2) Service.

He further emphasized that the main objective of Rotary: “Avenues of Service” for which he made a truly personalized presenta on and review of our Club’s Avenues of Service: Club, Vocational, Community, International, Youth and the inherent programs of each.

Barbara Burns introduced our speaker, Dan Dow, District Attorney of San Luis Obispo County. Our County District She told us that Dan is also a proud Rotarian of the San Luis Obispo Club.

Dan made sure Sheri Dick saw that he was wearing his Rotary pin. Dan spoke about the subject
of human trafficking in our county, as well as reviewing this globally (46 million are enslaved!).
Rotary International has established an on-line site with informa on, called Rotary Action Group About Slavery: The FBI says that slavery is the fastest growing crime, especially in California and even here in SLO County. The average age for sex slavery is 16, with children even younger than 12 being trafficked by gangs. Dan reported that it is very lucrative and that there is a demand in our county, a major, major issue here. Also, labor trafficking is happening here. Law enforcement has been educated about this since 2014 and now Rotary is involved, with our District Governor John Weiss supportive.


Cambria Rotary Club Information

Welcome to the BEST Rotary Club in the world!


Service Above Self

We meet Fridays at 12:00 PM
Cambria Pines Lodge
2905 Burton Drive
(805) 927-4200
Cambria, CA  93428
United States

(805) 769-4749
District Site
Venue Map

Annika Wharton gave us a quick over- view of the local FFA program. She has been raising a pig that will be shown at the Mid State Fair and then will be auctioned off. Funds raised in the auction will help fund the FFA Program at the high school. Miguel Sandoval, Chair of Community Services presented Annika with a check for $150 to help with expenses related to raising the pig.

President's Message
Message coming soon from President Roger Robinson, 2018-2019


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Festival of Trees

Trees, Wreaths and other items for the auction will benefit the charity of choice. None of the money will be shared with any other entity. In addition, any profit from the event ( through ticket sales, raffles, etc) will be shared among the non-profits participating in the auction. Save the Date: Tuesday, November 27, 2018.   Tickets $50.00           Please click on the logo for more information

Upcoming Events
  • Viva Meeting
    Robinson's house 3141 Wood Drive
    Oct 09, 2018
    5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
  • Viva Meeting
    Robinson's house 3141 Wood Drive
    Oct 23, 2018
    5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Three Truths & a Lie at San Simeon
Sep 28, 2018
at San Simeon Beach Bar and Grill
Andrew Boyd-Goodrich
Jan 11, 2019
"Camp Ocean Pines: Helping Youth to Connect, Engage, and Grow!"
What We Do



September 2018
Member Birthdays:
  • Roger Robinson
    September 9
  • Shari Long
    September 11
  • Paula Porter
    September 12
  • Otis Archie
    September 13
  • Mary Ann Carson
    October 5
  • Linda Ennen
    October 10
  • Linda Sherman
    October 10
  • Miguel Hernandez
    October 11
  • Miguel Sandoval
    October 11
  • Donald H. Ramirez
    October 16
  • Christel Chesney
    October 21
  • Chris Cameron
    October 24
  • Kathleen Kirby-Miller
    October 25
  • Sue1 Oberholtzer
    October 27