Welcome to Needham! We are a great group of 40 members strong and growing. Men and Women, young and old – we meet for lunch every Tuesday. Our projects focus on giving back to both our community here and beyond.
JOIN US FOR LUNCH!
Needham Sheraton: 100 Cabot Street
With interesting speakers and an energized group
every week, you will come away inspired.
Posted by Jim Brown on Apr 15, 2014
Needham Rotary Club News for April 8, 2014
The highlight of our weekly meeting was clearly the presence of Henry Hicks, and his engaging wife, Amy Hicks. Henry, now retired from being the long-time anchor of the history department at Needham High School, and the former head of the Needham Historical Society, presented a program filled with early Needham historical facts. He opened with a scene from 1856 at the now long-gone Fremont Street Railroad Station where five to ten thousand Needham residents greeted presidential candidate John C. Fremont, pathfinder of the West and the first Republican candidate for president. Needham was a fiercely independent place, strongly anti-slavery and disgusted with Democrats who had extended the boundaries of slavery and installed the hated Fugitive Slave Act in the famous Compromise of 1850.
Henry's stories were fascinating snapshots of Needham history. In a visit in 1789 George Washington (he must have slept somewhere in Needham) pronounced the roads of Needham to be the worst he had encountered in America (we're doing a bit better today). In 1849 the Town of Needham voted (meaninglessly) to impeach Massachusetts senator and long time hero, Daniel Webster, because he was a Mason (Needham opposed and voted against the Massachusetts Masonic Party). Throughout the 19th century, Needham battled hated enemy Boston as it fought annexation by securing its own water supply by digging what were then the deepest wells in America. The water wars of those years helped found Norfolk County and shape today's towns and water supplies to the west of Boston.
We wanted our "classroom time" with Henry to go on for the whole semester, even though a couple of members remembered being lucky to get a "C" in Henry's classes at Needham HS! He was a demanding grader and the kind of teacher people fondly remember for life! We also learned that his wife, Amy, is still a synchronized swimmer and an athlete who still "throws the hammer."
Rotary Club business for the day included an autobiographical talk by Needham Rotary Club member Kathy Whitney. She and her husband, Bill, shared his 20-year plus radar career in the Navy, moving to Massachusetts for his second career in electronics at Raytheon. She recently retired from more than 30 years at Cox and Cox as a legal secretary. Perhaps most interesting about Kathy is her heart for volunteering to help others. She manages to find time for what seems like every Rotary project, at her church, at the Community Council, the spelling bee, library, the Charles River Gala, and other Needham events. She is the go-to person if you want your event to succeed, and along the way "connects" people across our community! She also cross-stitches, recently completing 50 vests for a boy's school in Uganda. She and her husband restored a 1982 Jarvis sailboat, she's the co-commodore of friendship sloops, she boats to Maine regularly and has an email tag, "bigboatmama."
Many of us other Rotarians are still striving to achieve the level of volunteerism that Kathy so ably demonstrates! She is a role model for us to follow!
PS: She needs auction item donations for the Charles River Gala next week!
Other meeting notes:
One of the roles of club presidents is to keep the membership happy. This past week President Glen Davis got an "A" grade from at least one member, Lois Sockol, who has been "complaining" lately about the lack of whipped cream at our luncheon buffet. Glen ceremoniously delivered the whipped cream to Lois as a demonstration of his presidential responsiveness.
Finally, the club meeting on April 15th, tax day for those of you not paying attention, is a day for important club business. The leadership team has been busy thinking about how to improve club structures and improve club participation in projects and event planning. President Glen will be leading our vital discussion of Board proposals.
OUR HARD AT WORK BOARD COMMITTEE WORKING ON HOW TO EFFECTIVELY DELIVER MORE SERVICE TO OUR COMMUNITY AND WORLD!
Posted by Kathy Whitney on Apr 01, 2014
Posted by Rich Forte on Mar 25, 2014
BRAZILIAN ROTARY EXCHANGE STUDENT PEDRO GARCIA LOPES GAVE NEEDHAM ROTARIANS AN INTRODUCTION TO THE DYNAMIC AND EXOTIC COUNTRY OF BRAZIL
Posted by Jim Brown on Mar 18, 2014
Posted by Jim Brown on Mar 11, 2014
Posted on Mar 10, 2014
FOR MARCH 4, 2014
President Glenn Davis welcomed our speakers for the day who are visiting Rotarians from Kathmandu, Nepal. Mangala Shrestha and her husband, Jagan Nath Shrestha, presented a picture of a local Rotary club “on fire” with the Rotarian spirit of serving others.
Their Chandragiri Rotary club is busy with literacy programs (especially for young women who traditionally are not educated equally with men in their society), vocational technical training, career counseling, and sponsoring an orphanage, old age homes and housing for the physically disabled. Because Kathmandu only has eight hours a day of electricity, their club has put up solar powered streetlights and trained people in sustainable energy development (Jagan Nath is a professor of energy studies and President of the Nepal Solar Energy Society).
They are in the Boston area visiting their son and his wife and their grandkids, and they plan to be here for several weeks. Their smiles, optimism, and stories of the needs of people in their community and the ways that Rotary and Rotarians meet those needs, provided our members with tangible and compelling insight into the global “connections” that we enjoy as Rotarians with 1.2 million other men and women members!
NEEDHAM ROTARY CLUB BUSINESS DISCUSSION
The program was the perfect finishing touch on a discussion about whether the club wants to “take it to the next level” in increasing our involvement with needs in our community of Needham, around the district and around the world. Rich Forte, even though hobbled with his foot injury, led a positive discussion by members around the topic of “what’s next for us?”
This discussion is timely given the fact that no member has stepped up to take the role of club president for next year. Our succession plan was broken by the sudden resignation of our designated new president due to business transfer. Even though this week the district training program is being conducted for new presidents, we have not yet sent a person. If YOU want to serve, please tell President Glen immediately.
Listeners to the discussion heard a commitment by a majority of those present to a reinvigorated effort to add new projects (such as the Music Awards Program done by Rachel, Greg and others), recommit to and perhaps redesign long standing programs (such as the Pancake Breakfast), and to redouble our efforts in membership, fund raising and weekly programs. Those who spoke praised the spirit of the club, the enjoyable camaraderie of members and our reputation for community service in the town.
Clearly, we need to tell our story, add new members, increase our revenues (money allows more service) and be willing to change some of our habits and ways. Interestingly, our Rotarian guests from Nepal said that many of the things we were going through are regularly faced by their club many thousands of miles away!
The discussion was challenging, interesting and positive, and most were expressively committed to “taking it to the next level.”
We skipped humor for the day (with apologies to Doug George, who no doubt had a couple of really good ones for us). There were plenty of “glad to be here” happy thoughts, Ron and Lois were back with us after several weeks away in “sunny, warm Florida” (they had to rub it in), and (perhaps the biggest news) Bill Paulson is happy with his new job at Keller Williams Realty. Bill also volunteered to begin a new feature of our weekly club meetings, a five-minute verbal biography. What an interesting guy he is and sitting right next to us!
COMMUNITY COUNCIL OF NEEDHAM PROJECT ON MARCH 8TH
Hey, Needham Rotary, pat yourselves (collectively) on the back for an outstanding day of service to the community. On Saturday, March 8th, about fifteen members, family and friends gathered at the nonprofit Needham Community Council Building at 570 Hillside Avenue, to lay about 600 square feet of carpet tiles in the newly refurbished second floor storeroom (next to the clothing thrift store). It was a great “hands-on” project for the club and thanks to all those who gave up their Saturday to help. We got paid with free donuts and coffee and a whole lot of satisfaction that comes from volunteering!
Special thanks for leadership and technical help (and tools) go to Dan Tibma and Doug George without whom most of us would have been either standing around or making really BIG mistakes!
The pictures show intense concentration, hard work and a whole lot of fun that was had by all. But, it took several days to get all of the carpet glue and fibers from under our nails!
Posted by Douglas George on Feb 25, 2014
Posted by Jim Brown on Feb 18, 2014
Posted by Marty Lindemann on Feb 17, 2014
Needham Rotary Club
Tuesday, February 11, 2014
Location: Needham Sheraton Hotel
Our meeting was changed to the Sheraton at the last minute from the Senior Center (scheduling conflict at the center), and was called to order by President Glen Davis. He led us in the Pledge of Allegiance, we sang patriotically with gusto and prayed earnestly, but due to the sudden change of venue, we didn't have a program.
Instead, we enjoyed lively table talk, tossed some ribbing around the room, sang loudly for our birthday boys (see pic below), and had some important discussion about the upcoming leadership needs of the club since we no longer have a designated president for next year (2014-15).
Libby Pero from Capron Lighting, a soon to be new member as soon as the Board acts on her submitted application.
1. The meeting on February 18th at the Sheraton is a really important meeting and we hope all our members will be present. We will be honoring the winners of the recent Needham Music Awards which we sponsored. They will be giving entertaining encore musical presentations for us. The room will be filled with lots of visitors and guests. It will be an excellent opportunity for us to make contact with non-Rotarians and friends and to tell our story of how we work in our community and around the world.
2. We need someone to quickly step up and volunteer to be next year's president! District training classes for new presidents begins next month and missing that opportunity is a loss for the new president and the club! Call or email Glen Davis as soon as possible. Our experienced Board and cadre of past presidents stands ready to help you and support the upcoming year's programs.
3. Rotary International announced the extraordinary gift of $1.1M from Rotarians Terry and Barbara Caster to the Polio Plus Fund (Couple’s $1.1 million gift boosts push to eradicate polio). Moreover, the couple's gift will be matched two to one by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. This comes as news from India that the country has now been polio free for three years! Thanks to each of you that has made a contribution to ending polio!
There's an excellent year-end report on the country by country status of the polio fight at http://www.polioeradication.org/Dataandmonitoring/Poliothisweek.aspx
We remembered with fondness our founding father, George Washington, and observed that he was the only president to die in the 1700's and who never resided as president in Washington, D.C. (only New York and Philadelphia).
Marty Lindemann won the draw and blew the chance to win $72. The kitty swells next week!
We had no humor for the day. Just kidding:
1. Three guys were talking in the pub. Two of them were discussing the amount of control they have over their wives, while the third remained silent.
After a while one of the first two turns to the third and asks “Well, what about you, what sort of control do you have over your wife?”
The third fellow says “I’ll tell you. Just the other night my wife came to me on her hands and knees.”
The first two guys were amazed. “What happened next?” they asked.
She said “Come out from under the bed and fight like a man.”
2. As a trucker stops at a red light, a blonde catches up. She jumps out of her car, runs up to his truck and knocks on the door. The trucker lowers the window, and she says, "Hi, my name is Heather and you're losing some of your trailer's load."
The trucker ignores her and proceeds down the street. When the truck stops for another red light, the woman catches up again. She jumps out of her car, runs up and knocks on the door. Again, the trucker rolls down the window. As if they've never spoken, the blonde says brightly, "Hi, my name is Heather, and you are losing some of your load!"
When the light turned green the trucker revs up and races to the next traffic light, stops, jumps out of his cab and runs back to the blonde's car before she can repeat her warning. He knocks on her window, and as she lowers it, he says, "Hi, my name is Kevin, it's winter in Boston, and I'm driving the salt truck!"
Posted by Jim Brown on Feb 04, 2014
Posted by Kathy Whitney on Jan 28, 2014
Posted by Douglas George on Jan 14, 2014
Posted by Jim Brown on Jan 07, 2014
Posted by Rich Forte on Dec 17, 2013
Posted by Jim Brown on Dec 10, 2013
Posted by Kathy Whitney on Dec 03, 2013
Posted by Jim Brown on Nov 26, 2013
Posted by Douglas George on Nov 19, 2013
Posted by Kathy Whitney on Nov 12, 2013
Posted by Jim Brown on Nov 05, 2013
Posted by Rich Forte on Oct 29, 2013
Posted by Douglas George on Oct 22, 2013
Posted by Jim Brown on Oct 15, 2013
Posted by Kathy Whitney on Oct 08, 2013
Posted by Rich Forte on Oct 01, 2013
Posted by Douglas George on Sep 24, 2013
Posted by Rich Forte on Sep 17, 2013
Posted by Jim Brown on Sep 10, 2013
Posted by Jim Brown on Sep 03, 2013
Posted by Douglas George on Aug 27, 2013
Posted by Jim Brown on Aug 20, 2013
Posted by Rich Forte on Aug 13, 2013
Posted by Douglas George on Jul 30, 2013
Posted by Douglas George on Jul 23, 2013
Posted by Jim Brown on Jul 16, 2013
Posted by Rich Forte on Jul 09, 2013
Posted by Douglas George on Jul 02, 2013