The Flywheel

February 5, 2016

NEXT MEETING: February 5, 2016

Richmond Fab Lab: Where Students and Community Can "Make Almost Anything”!

Funded by a Chevron grant to the Fab Foundation, our school district is implementing a Fabrication Laboratory (aka “Fab Lab”) at Kennedy High School, to serve the entire district K-12 and support community entrepreneurship.  A Fab Lab is a small-scale digital workshop equipped with computer-controlled tools: 3D printers, laser-cutters, routing machines, 3D scanners, 3D milling machines, and programming tools.  In a Fab Lab, you can “make almost anything”, or in other words, create different types of projects and products.
Our district is the location for the only K-12 Fab Lab on the West Coast. Philip Gonsalves, Senior Director for Mathematics, Science, and STEM Education for the West Contra Costa Unified School District, will give us an overview of what this means for Richmond.


  • Dan Tanita cuts ribbon at new dental clinic at Coronado Elementary school in RichmondLast Friday Dr. Dan Tanita had the well-deserved honor: cutting the ribbon marking the opening of a free dental clinic for WWCUSD students at Coronado Elementary School. Thanks for establishing this great community resource, Dan.
  • Richmond Rotarians joined Jim Young’s family and friends for his memorial service at the Arlington Community Church last Saturday. Many rose to recall the myriad contributions Jim made to the people of Richmond and beyond. We will miss you, Jim.
  • Downtown David Brown, Esq. and Herb Cole reminded us to sign up for the Saturday, February 6 Rotary-Salesian Crab/Pasta Feed. $45/adults and $25/children. This is our second biggest fundraiser of the year.
  • Menehune Don Lau informed us that Mike Winters has been with the club for 48 years and that today is Felix Hunziker’s birthday! Ho’omaika’i ‘Ana!
  • Alan Blavins and David Brown reported that the 2015 Rotary auction raised over $30,000. Alan presented to Shana Bagley Howe the first of his auctioned sketches (it’s beautiful!).

MEETING OF January 29, 2016


President Alan Blavins called the meeting to order, asked Dan Tanita, DDS to lead us in the Pledge of Allegiance, and asked for a silent prayer for peace and for our friend Jim Young. Joe Bagley rang the Rotary Bell for each of the 13 years that Jim was a member of our club. Sergeant-at-Arms Sid Chauvin offered the quote of the day: “Politicians are people who, when they see the light at the end of the tunnel, will buy more tunnel.”

Visiting Rotarians and Guests

Alan Blavins introduced guest and prospective new member Felix Osegura (thanks Felix for helping with the projector!).

David Cole brought Julie Costa.

Rebecca Nang and Markida Brodie were guests of our speaker, Tiffany Harris.

Recognitions and Happy and Sad Dollars

  • Swampy Joe Bagley said that Jim Beaver sent in $100 for his birthday.
  • Hank Covell had happy dollars because the Salesian Boys and Girls Club Bagna Cauda raised over $40,000! And for RJ, who is being paid to attend the Superbowl as he is in charge of the sound set up.
  • Oh! Henry Moe was also happy because the Salesian boys basketball team beat El Cerrito, making them the top of the league at 5-0!
  • Alan Blavins was happy because his son is coming to visit for Alan’s birthday.
  • Herb Cole is happy because 7 Rotarians have signed up for the international project assembling and distributing over 250 wheelchairs in Monterrey, Mexico.
  • Connie Tritt, CPA, had sad dollars because 2 of her cats had to be put to sleep and because she is going to miss several Rotary meetings due to tax season.
  • Shana Bagley Howe had very sad dollars for missing her dear friend Jim Young.
  • Erle Brown had super happy dollars because he is leaving for Puerto Vallarta for 5 weeks.
  • Big Daddy Josh Surowitz (with a cry baby voice) had happy dollars for not watching the GOP debates.


The Girls Inc. Experience

Program Chair Extraordinaire Stacey Street introduced Tiffany Harris, CEO of Girls, Inc., a nonprofit organization that inspires girls 5-18 to be strong, smart, and bold. There are three affiliations in the Bay Area: Richmond, Oakland, and Alameda.

Girls, Inc. provides media literacy, economic literacy, adolescent health, violence prevention, and sports participation. They partner with community-minded organizations like Home Depot, Night Riders, Nutiva, and Eileen Fischer. Among other great things, they provide after school programs and STEM programs, teach life skills, go on college tours, and provide college scholarships.

The Girls, Inc. Bill of Rights:

Girls have the right to be themselves and to resist gender stereotypes.
Girls have the right to express themselves with originality and enthusiasm.
Girls have the right to take risks, to strive freely, and to take pride in success.
Girls have the right to accept and appreciate their bodies.
Girls have the right to have confidence in themselves and to be safe in the world.
Girls have the right to prepare for interesting work and economic independence.

For more information, and to volunteer, donate, apply to be a board member or mentor, look here and here.

- Shana Bagley Howe, Rotating Scribette