Posted by Jim Brice on May 16, 2013
Mitch and I have been enjoying a very lazy vacation, South Beach was amazing (especially Mojitos and stone crabs), and I can't believe how warm the water is. I know you are all looking forward to the Open Heart Kitchen service coming up May 23, and don't miss the PNR Foundation meeting right after Fridays club meeting!
Have a great week!
Posted by Jim Brice on May 15, 2013
Pleasanton North Rotary have recognized the academic achievements of Mark Chen and Takashi (Sean) Sato in their selection as January and February 2013 Students of the Month.
Chen, a Foothill senior, was nominated by the school’s senior department his success with advanced placement classes in variety of a subjects including honors global studies, English, calculus, history, biology, computer science, chemistry, Spanish, and economics.
Foothill’s faculty singled out Chen for his hard work, diligence, and maturity.
"Mark Chen is the perfect choice for the Student of the Month Award,” wrote Spanish teacher Karen Maurice in endorsing him for the honor. "He is very dedicated and serious about his education, and it shows in everything he does."
Sato’s affinity for language learning drew support from Foothill’s languages department.
"Sean Sato is our man," wrote department leader Tom Diehl. "Sean is not only a diligent and outstanding student. He is a very respectful and helpful young man as well. "
A Foothill junior, Sato was one of the top students in advanced placement Japanese. He is also taking advanced placement Spanish and world history.
Chen and Sato were presented Student of the Month Certificates and $50 awards by Foothill Vice-Principal Rich Gorton at the May 10 meeting of Pleasanton North Rotary, the program’s sponsor.
Below: Mark Chen and Takashi (Sean) Sato are the January and February Students of the Month for Pleasanton’s Foothill High School. Chen (left panel) and Sato (right panel) were presented certificates recognizing their achievements by Rich Gorton, Foothill High School vice-principal, at the May 10 meeting of Pleasanton North Rotary, the program’s sponsor (Photo by Dave Cherry).
Posted by Jim Brice on May 16, 2013
Let’s face it. Foster care is the pits. Regardless of your home situation, you are separated from your parents, brothers, and sisters and relocated in possibly indifferent home situations where your foster parents are paid to care for you and where you can be shipped off to another home at any time. Ultimately, at age 18, you are handed your bag and directed to the street.
Shawn Farrell, the fine friend of Pleasanton North Rotary’s Gina Piper, reported on an alternative scenario for foster kids at Friday’s PNR meeting. It is called the Children’s Village of Sonoma, a residential program that places these children in healthy group home environments, with foster parents, foster grandparents, and better odds for a successful adult life.
The concept of Children's Village is similar to El Oasis, the orphanage PNR supports in Mexico. It extends care and guidance for 6 kids in four group house (24 children overall). Siblings can stay together under the guidance of full-time foster parents, with additional backup from professional case managers, educational support, and community involvement, such as team sports.
Farrell noted that the founders of Children Village are planning to build a fifth home on the campus to house six more foster kids. The project will cost $500,000. A recent charity poker tournament for the facility, supported by PNR, raised $38,000 for the cause.
PNR president-elect Frank Hanna hopes our chapter will continue to lend a hand. After Farrell’s presentation, he noted Children’s Village is precisely the kind of local project he hopes to support during his presidential year.
Posted by Jim Brice on May 07, 2013
The Keystone Ball has again become one of the happiest and energetic events on Pleasanton North Rotary's calendar.
More than 160 adults who receive services through the Keystone Adult Learning Center participate in the annual formal dance May 3 at Pleasanton's Hilton Hotel. PNR sponsored the event with assistance from the Hilton, Skip Hensley of Girasole Grill, Pleasanton, and Vince MacNamara of MacNamara's Steak and Chop House, Dublin.
As shown in the photo montage below, PNR members decompressed after Friday's Membership Mixer for fun on the Keystone dance floor.
Posted by Jim Brice on May 07, 2013
Top Rotary District 5170 officials joined Pleasanton North Rotary officers at PNR’s May 4 Membership Mixer to explain the numerous benefits of Rotary International.
Russ Hobbs, membership director of Rotary District 5170, described his 30-year experience with the organization. He credited Rotary for helping him develop leadership, organizational, a public speaking skills during time spent behind a podium on Rotary’s behalf. These abilities, along with business connections established through Rotary, proved invaluable for his sales work for All State Insurance in Santa Cruz and later in Sunnyvale, CA.
His life was enriched spiritually from the opportunity to play a hands-on role in inoculating African children against polio and in distributing wheelchairs in Mexico, he said. In particular, he remembered the incredible joy expressed by a disabled child as he was lifted from a crude push cart and set into a sleek new wheelchair from the Rotary program.
District 5170 president Joe Hamilton brought Bob Tucknott, past president of Dublin Rotary, Ron Hyde and Richard Flanders, each a past president of PNR, to the podium. Each has provided extraordinary services to district, Hamilton said. Tucknott -- a frequently visitor to PNR meetings -- was singled out for his exceptional member recruitment abilities. Hyde, a retired Alameda County court judge, has unselfishly volunteered time to oversee background checks for Rotary members enrolled in District 5170’s Youth Protection program. Richard Flanders was responsible for the best attendance ever for the district’s annual Avenue of Services training event in San Jose last year. All three are superb models that new Rotary member would be wise to emulate, he said.
A slideshow and photo display illustrated examples of PNR’s support for worthy local and international causes. A partial list includes:
- School of Imagination & Happy Talkers, a preschool in Dublin, CA for children with autism and language learning difficulties.
- East Bay Stand Down, an intensive 3-day intervention for homeless military veterans.
- Open Heart Kitchen, a free meal program for the elderly in Pleasanton
- REACH group homes for disabled adults in Pleasanton and Livermore
- Habitat for Humanity.
- Annual PNR memorial scholarships for graduating seniors at Pleasanton Foothill High School
- Rotary Youth Leadership Awards for high school students to a six-day summer camp providing leadership training
- Keystone Ball, a prom for disabled adults
- Sweethearts Valentine Dinner at Pleasanton Garden Retirement Community
- Amador High School Mock Trial Competition
- El Oasis Orphanage
- Latin American Wheelchair Giveaway to needy children and adults.
PNR has been strengthened recently with the addition of Chris Anderson, Darlene Espinoza Ed and Lara Golden, Carol Moberg, and Susan Tremaine. Four more candidates attended the Membership Mixer to potentially increase participation.
Below: A collage of photos from the 2013 Membership Mixer shows Richard Flanders, Joe Hamilton, and Russ Hobbs speaking.
Posted by Kevin Greenlee on May 07, 2013
Pleasanton North Rotary’s own Mio Ueki, its foreign exchange student from Kobe, Japan, joined 15 other students involved with District 5170’s foreign youth exchange program for a four-day trip ending May 5 to Yosemite National Park.
Kevin Greenlee, PNR’s Youth Services chair, helped lead the expedition. The student group included current inbounders, next year's outbounders and one rebounder (gone and come back already, he said.
The Freedom Rotary Club hosted the group in the Upper Pines Campground. It arrived Thursday afternoon, set up Shelterbox tents for the students, and had a pasta dinner with s’mores* by the camp fire. Students were assigned tasks, including meal prep and clean up.
Keith Henderson from Santa Cruz Rotary and Shelterbox, the Rotary-backed program of packaged tents and other survival gear for disaster-prone communities, led a group to the top of Upper Yosemite Falls. The students went to Rotarian camps for dinner. Saturday the group got dropped off at Glacier Point and hiked down to Nevada Falls, then back to camp via the mist trail. Dinner was a big barbeque with tri-tip steaks, ribs and chili. An ice cream social rounded out the evening.
“We broke camp Sunday morning and arrived home with blisters, sore muscles, and a lot of great memories!” Kevin said.
* S’more are a camp fire treat of graham crackers with melted marshmellows and chocolate prepared over an open flame.
Below: Rotary Youth Exchange participants shown at Glacier Point above Yosemite Valley.
Posted by Jim Brice on May 02, 2013
Florence and Richard Flanders were twice blessed with the births of their twin son and daughter on April 15.
Shown in the pink blanket, Brennyn Grace was born at 2:43 pm. She weighed 4 pounds, 11 ounces and was 17.75 inches in length.
In the blue blanket, Ryson Phoenix, was born a minute later. He was 6 pounds, 2 ounces and 19.25 inches.
Richard reports the twins behave most of the time. Florence and he are trying to catch up with their sleep.
"We are joyful and happy with the arrival of the twins," he wrote to PNR in an email.
Richard is a past president of PNR and active member on the club's behalf especially in terms of its relations with Rotary International District 5170. His vocational category is attorney at law.
Posted by Jim Brice on Apr 29, 2013
Bruce Jones May 5
Tom Hall May 12
Jerry Prettyman May 13
Susan Case May 18
Dave Pitcher May 22
Ed and Lara Golden May 21, 1994
Jerry Prettyman and Hathily Winston May 18, 1990
Susan DuPree and Hollis Bascom May 26, 1990
PNR Membership Anniversaries
Susan DuPree 16 years May 7, 1997
Posted by Jim Brice on Apr 11, 2013
PNR members are organizing at least 3 foursomes to play in REACH’s Seventh Annual Golf Tournament & Dinner Banquet July 29 at Castlewood Country Club.
Our club is a long-time friend of this non-profit provider of housing facilitating independent living for disabled adults in Pleasanton and Livermore. The cost of admission for this charitable event is $150 for golf, dinner, and live auction. Details are available on the REACH website.
Posted by Jim Brice on Mar 28, 2013
PNR Past President Richard Flanders (2001-2002) was honored March 23 with a "Significant Acheivement" Award from Rotary 5170 during its district conference in Napa.
Richard was singled out for voluntary work beyond the call of Rotary duty including his management of the highly successful District 5170 Avenues of Service program in Napa earlier this year. In our PNR circle, Flanders is touted for this legal acumen as a trial lawyer and new member recruitment ability. He was not told about the Rotary 5170 award until the surprise honor was presented at a Saturday breakfast meeting.
Richard Flanders responds to an "Appreciation" award from Rotary District 5170 in October 2012 for his management of the District 5170 Avenues of Service program.
Posted by Jim Brice on Mar 28, 2013
Thanks to last minute magic from the Pleasanton North Rotary Foundation and donations from individual PNR members and Foothill faculty -- all nine students deemed qualified to attend Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA) Camp have been awarded scholarships enabling them to attend the highly touted leadership program this summer.
This year’s recipients are Hayley Do, Amanda Jocson, Naayl Kazmi, Angela Kim, Lauren Liao, Kimberley Szeto, Dawn Wong, Stephanie Yu, and Jennifer Zhu. All attend Pleasanton Foothill High School.
The students qualified for the program after successful interviews with a PNR panel comprised of Tina Case, PNR president; Kevin Greenlee, New Horizons chair; and Michelle Jurich, a teacher at Foothill High School.
The PNR Foundation initially approved one $495 scholarship from income generated by the 2012 A Starry Night Fundraiser. Five more scholarships arose from donations from Rich Carson, Greenlee, Jurich, and the PNR's Parker family. The Foundation designated unused travel money for two more scholarships at a monthly meeting, March 21.
This year’s RYLA camp will be held August 4-9 at Mission Springs Camps and Conference Center, Scott’s Valley.
Posted by Jim Brice on Mar 21, 2013
Pleasanton North Rotary has decided to add a bonus to its direct hands-on monthly support to Open Heart Kitchen. PNR President Tina Case (aka Hello Kitty) presented a check for $1000 to the charity's executive directory Linda McKeever during ceremonies at the the March 15 lunch meeting. Ms. McKeever said the demand for hot meals for the elderly continues to grow in the Tri-Valley. Open Heart Kitchen served 260,000 meals in 2012. Services from three grade school kitchen were added in the Tri-Valley this year, she noted.
Below, PNR president Tina Case presented a check for $1000 to Lionda McKeever, executive director of Open-Heart Kitchen to support the non-profit group's dinner program for the elderly in the Tri-Valley.
Posted by Jim Brice on Mar 21, 2013
Chuck Eggers was induced into Rotary International's Paul Harris Society as four other members of Pleasanton North Rotary were recognized for multiple Paul Harris Fellow Recognition at its March 15th meeting.
The presentation of Paul Harris Fellow recognition is the Rotary Foundation's way of expressing its appreciation for a substantial contribution to its humanitarian and educational program. It is named Rotary's founder, Paul Harris, a Chicago lawyer who started Rotary International with three business associates in 1905.
Rotary members earn entry into the Paul Harris Fellowship by donating late least $1000 over time to the foundation's annual programs, PolioPlus, or the sponsor portion of a foundation grant. Donations in multiples of $1000 earn multiple recognition awards.
PNR Chuck Eggers earned early into the Paul Harris Society this year. His was presented his Paul Harris Society pin in ceremonies March 15. Chuck received a certificate, medallion and pin, the three emblems of appreciation for Paul Harris fellows.
Four other PNR members received multiple recognition. Patricia Katherin Ritter was induced into the society on behalf of PNR past president Herb Ritter. Herb received a three-ruby pin signifying his donations of $9000 to $10,000 to the Paul Harris Society over his 24 years as a PNR member.
Davy Cherry received a two-rub pin for rising to the level-7 for donation of $8000 to $9000. A one-rub pin was awarded to Dominic Pipitone for donating $7000 to $8000 during his experience as a PNR member. And Maurice Turner was honored with a two-sapphire pin for a double multiple for donations between $3000 and $4000 donor.
PNR was 100% Paul Harris Fellow Club, with all members donating at least some money to the Paul Harris Society. Overall, the chapter donated $25,000, according PNR president Tina Case.
Collage top down: Dominic Pipitone, with Ron Hyde who represented Pleasanton North Rotary Foundation, and President Tina Case. Maurice Turner with Ron and Tina. Certificates were presented to each member of the Ritter Household include Katherine, Herb and each of their children. Don Cherry receives his multiple Paul Harris pin from Ron and Tina. Chuck Eggers was accepted into the elite society this year. He is shown with Tina and Ron below.
Posted by Jim Brice on Mar 20, 2013
Audrey Gladfides organizes an awesome crew comprised of PNR members and fellow University of California alumni to make direct hands-on contribution to the completion of new duplex house on March 16 in East Oakland.
Her team put in a full day for manual labor from 8:30 am to 3:15 pm.
Tangible progress was made through the day. Ed Golden and Ron Hyde installed exterior trim for second-story windows. Amy Fenech and Rose Polis cauched windows and painted walls. Kevin Greenlee and Jim Brice dug a trench for a water main in the morning. In the afternoon, Kevin cut away away excess fiberboard about the outside edges of windows. Jim joined the heroic brace removal crew to remove temporary lumber support to freestanding, two-story walls on four on the seven duplex units on Edes Street in Oakland.
Front row below from left: Jim Brice and tough guy Kevin Greenlee. Rear from left: Ed Golden, Dominic Pipitone, Amy Fenach, Rose Polis, and Group Leader Audry Gladfides.