The Flywheel

July 8, 2015

NEXT MEETING: July 8, 2015. No meeting next Friday.

Eject the Englishman on July 8th.

alan-blavins-catfish-300Come one, come all! It’s time to throw out the Englishman!!  Come see the premiere of “The Alan Blavins Story: Fact or Fish Tale?”   The Demotion of Alan Blavins also ushers in the reign of our next president, Josh Surowitz.


  • We are not meeting on July 1st. Come celebrate American Independence the following week, as we restore American rule to the Richmond Rotary (see above).
  • Alan Baer reminded all about the A’s game on 7/23. Let him know if you would like to attend.
  • Hercules Rotary invites all to participate in their 4th of July Celebration. You can volunteer to assist or just come out and have a good time.
  • Henry Moe thanked the Club for sponsoring 2 students to attend Camp Royal. Henry also wanted everyone to know that the Bay Area InterAct Clubs are working together to provide items for the Homeless in Berkeley. Donations can be made to Henry or sent to David Brown with a note that the funds go to the homeless project.
  • On July 15th we will not meet at the Richmond County Club so stay tuned for the knife and fork venue for that date. It’s your call, incoming prez Josh Surowitz



Prez Alan Blavins (for the last time) rang the bell and welcomed all to the Happiest Rotary Club in Richmond. Nick Despota led us in the Pledge with Alan offering a moment for Peace and Good Will to all. Sid Chauvin offered “Old Age is coming at a really bad time!”

Recognitions and Happy and Sad Dollars

Dan-flagsMey Saechao did the honors for the first time!!

  • Dan “Painless” Tanita was back from a 3 week trip to Russia to visit some of the dentists who traveled to Richmond in September 2013. Dan visited 4 cities and brought back 3 flags (see picture) from Rotary Clubs he visited. Another delegation of dentists from Russia will visit us on July 24th.
  • Mey reported that John Wilson sent his regards. He has a broken car and a new house.
  • Alan Baer reported on the recent Rotary Bocce Ball tournament. Both of our teams made it to the semifinals…but that was it. Good news! The InterAct Club got Second Place!
  • Simon Ellis was really happy to be at Rotary.
  • Nick Despota was sad that a majority of England’s voters elected to leave the European Union. There are many issues—immigration and climate change, for instance—that can only be tackled by nations working cooperatively.
  • Henry Moe was happy that the Salesian Basketball Team is 10-0 in Summer League.
  • Erle Brown, always the optimist, said Warrior fans should not be upset. Cal fans are still waiting for something good to happen since 1959!
  • Your Scribe was very very very happy to welcome Mey to the Recognitions Team! Thanks Mey!


Stacey Street introduced our speaker Jasmine Tarkoff the co-convener of the Multi-Faith ACTION Coalition which is working together to address the root causes of poverty through public policy change and advocacy. Jasmine is also Executive Vice President of Temple Isaiah in Lafayette. The work of the MFAC is through its committees: Housing/Shelter; Food Security; Jobs and Economic Security; Education and Health. They are working on issues like minimum wage, health care for the undocumented, low cost housing shortage, and housing for veterans and those with housing subsidies. To address these issues they are working on the following initiatives: Asking landlords to make 1 unit or 1% of their units available for veterans or folks with subsidies; establish a Housing Security Fund; Junior Assessing Dwelling Units; spreading the word about the issue (132,000 people in Contra Costa County live below the poverty level); and by bringing on more people to work on the issue. I believe at the end of the meeting Jasmine and Jerry Feagley were planning on meeting to see what could be done in Richmond.

- The Menehune “Rotating Editor”