Rose’s Ruminations April/May 2018 for June Pinion
Oh my goodness – Here I sit writing my last Pinion! Last year as I calendared my Pinion due dates I wrote in June “Last Pinion – Time Flies! I had no idea just exactly how true that was going to be for me.
I missed my April summary in the May Pinionbut I want to do a small recap of April because some really amazing things happened in April. April 4thwas a day I had been waiting for – It was the first meeting of the Communications Team led by Dana Jones, Club Administration. This is a team that is always very busy making us relevant on our Web site, on our Facebook page, through our weekly e-bulletins, our Pinion, and photos, photos, photos. The team is made up of Dana, Padmaja, Maria, Jeff, Mary Lynn, Steve Cho, Audrey, and Sandi P. Together they talked how best to coordinate communication among each other. We addressed old password issues, updated all sites and they agreed to meet on a quarterly basis to review how things are going and what they can do to strengthen club communication. Great communication in a large club is key to its success. This is a great group of very collegial Rotarians that I know will work wonderful together for the next 2 years.
April 7, 2018 – Jeff Schinkel began a marathon of community service projects. Jeff, Margo, Tina, Rich G, and Tina’s son Jacob kicked off the beginning of cleaning and preparing to build a new shed to house tools needed to attend to a bee population for LEAF.
April 10 -Niles Rotarians joined our amazing Rotaract Club at Durham Elementary as they hosted an Astronomy Night for the kids. Included in this group to name a few were Sandy S., Sherry, PP Lisa L., Adam, Margo, and Jeff. A few Interactors from Fremont Christian were able to get in on the fun. Of course, this was all documented by our Ambassador of Fun and huge Rotaract supporter Mary Lynn.
April 13- we were honored by the Music at the Mission’s Buccaneer Masquerade Ball for our generous support of Music and Arts in our community. We all dressed up in our best pirate attire, and had a wonderful evening full of laughter and fun. Thank you again Gael Stewart for a night I won’t forget!
April 14 – on to the District Training Assembly and the finals of the Richard D. King Speech Contest. We heard from some very inspirational young speakers. It was a great day.
April 21 – we joined City of Fremont, Newark Cub Scouts Troop 441, and Niles Mosque volunteers planting trees, plants, and spreading tanbark at Buena Vista Park the day before Earth Day.
April 22 – the annual Jeff Falk Day at the A’s was a huge success with over 35 Rotarians tailgating and enjoying a big barbeque by Sandra and Daren Young.
April 5 – Gael Stewart received her Blue Badge – We were joined by her very proud daughter Jen and her 2 children – Way to go Gael.
April 12 – We inducted Irshad Rasheed. Welcome Irshad – I am looking forward to getting to know you better.
April 19– We welcomed our newest Niles Rotarian Stella Levin. Stella has been attending with Ray for a while we are so glad to now call you Niles Family.
April 26 – We inducted Jasmine Basrai as our newest Rotarian and honored her father Gary for his 30 years of dedication to Niles Rotary – Jasmine grew up a Niles Rotarian and I am so happy she has joined us officially.
So if you’re counting – that is 3 community service projects, 2 socials, a district event, and 3 new Rotarians in 1 month. April was an AMAZING Month, but we didn’t stop there.
WECOME MAY 2018!!!
May 3 -I did some catch up on my Rotarian of the Month pins. My January pick was Mary Lynn our Ambassador of Fun. Mary Lynn is everywhere but my focus for January was her undying support for the Rotaract Club of Greater Fremont. In June 2017 they had maybe 3 members. Marty agreed to be President. Because Mary Lynn has supported them, allowed them to use her home for game nights, activity nights, and is always present at their meetings, Marty with his small group has grown the club to 16 members in just 6 months. They had enough support to sponsor their first community service event with Niles Rotarians. Mary Lynn – thank you for not giving up on this group and encouraging them in their growth, we even have 2 Rotoractors attending the International Convention. My February pick was not present, so I moved on to March. My March Rotarian of the Month was Jeff Schinkel. This guy is amazing, creative, funny and fun! He has just been everywhere – he mans our Facebook page – he is now our Community Service Director, but if anyone in the club asks his advice or assistance he says yes. Jeff – thank you for all you are to our club – you have made my year very special. We have had a tough year in our We Care department! In May of 2017 I asked Margo Hood if she would be my We Care Advisor. She smiled and said, “Yes because you asked me.” I do not think either of us ever imagined what this year would be like. We encountered some very difficult losses, tragedy, and some very sick Rotarians. The entire year Margo has exhibited kindness, caring, coordination, great communication, patience, and has just loved on every person or family that has needed us and her. You are a treasure Margo – thank you for all you have done. At this meeting a big Congrats to our Sergeant at Arms Sam Forbes for his Paul Harris plus 1. And it was announced that Lisa Lorenz was named Conference Chair for the 2018 5170 District Conference to be held at San Jose State.
May 5 – THE DAY had finally come for us to complete the painting of the United States map at Niles Elementary. A great gang showed up including Dana, Rick J, Sherry, Margo, Jeff, Tina, Sandy S., and Tina’s son Jacob!! We finally have this one DONE!
May 6- Steve and Amy Cho hosted a hike or bike ride with a Steve Cho barbeque. It was a wonderful day! Sunny and quiet – half the group went for a rigorous bike ride in the morning while some of us showed up for the grub. Lovely day – thank you Amy and Steve.
May 10- I announce my February Rotarian of the Month – Daren Young for an absolutely, successful Hot! Hot! Chili Pepper Challenge. This would not happen without this fearless, tireless leader, and the entire Area 3 benefits from his commitment to Service Above Self. Thank you, Daren. Also, at this meeting we were honored to have a good friend join us – Richard Flanders. Richard announced that a Tribute Dinner to Richard D King is scheduled for November 2, 2018. It will be a Celebration of Rick’s 50 years in Rotary. It will be attended by 4 other past International Presidents. It should be a lovely evening, but you may want to get your tickets early.
May 17 – I hopped a plane for a short visit to Playa Del Carmen Mexico and PE Brian Hughes took the reins at the meeting. I hear there was a lot of fining going on! I was sorry to not be there as Dan Smith was honored with his Paul Harris plus EIGHT – that is $9,000 to the Rotary Foundation – thank you so much Dan. Also, our comedy relief team Manuel Franco and Rich Godfrey gave a heartfelt yet incredibly funny look into the small hospital in Guatemala we have adopted.
May 19- a group of Niles Rotarians and students’ parents gathered at Cabrillo Elementary to weed, clean, spread tanbark, and plant a vegetable garden. They planted corn, watermelon, beets, strawberries, jalapeños, eggplant, rosemary, squash, pumpkins, and sunflowers.
We had great speakers the next two meetings, BUT our focus was completely on the 5170 District Conference. We are encouraged by great signups and Niles Rotarians are stepping up to assist in every area. It is getting exciting.
May 31 – we finish our month with a REALLY fun Feed the Hungry. We have had some changes at Centerville Free Dining and we have worked on embracing the changes but also having fun. Well May 31 was the day we are all rolling together, serving together, laughing together, and really making Mankind OUR Business! Also, this week I was honored to be asked to hand out four $1,000 scholarships – 2 at Washington High and 2 at Fremont Christian. This was very important to me and yes, I cried because I have worked with three of the four students in Rotary for that last few years. They are wonderful, amazing leaders of our future. I am so blessed to know them.
On to District Conference!!! June 1-3 was District Conference at San Jose State University where my youngest son is now a student and rugby player, says this proud mama. Back to the point – our theme was “Celebrate the Past, Create the Future” and Lisa Lorenz was the 2018 Conference Chair – she did an amazing job. They changed some things up which made for a much better Rotarian experience. As President of the Niles Rotary Club, I was so proud of our Family! We were everywhere. We busted out the Area 3 Hospitality Suite, we graciously and efficiently wo-manned registration and event details, controlled beautifully the minute by minute program flow, with the very special President Linda Anderson from Mission San Jose we collected, displayed and handed out the raffle baskets and had a significant presence at set up and tear down. We were able to spotlight a couple of our members as we enjoyed wonderful treats from our own Nothing Bundt Cake, Subway and Rita’s. AND yet again we participated in a significant project in the San Jose Guadalupe Rose Garden on Sunday. We were everywhere! It was a great conference as the majority of breakout sessions were non-Rotary related and yet Rotary service was highlighted everywhere. A Rotary feel with new information – that’s how you Celebrate the Past and Create the Future. Thank Niles Rotary Family for your amazing support.
June 7 – I was honored to have District Governor Orrin Mahoney present to say a special thank you to Lisa. Lisa also did her thank you’s with a special thanks to a Rotarian that simply signed up to help Olivia Poe with Registration on Friday Night. Following that evening she went to the District Office where she and Olivia were up until 2:30 am preparing materials for Saturday. She returned early the next morning to step back into registration, handled problems, made sure Olivia was fed and taken care of, and then returned on Sunday to be a part of the Community Service Project. She has attended every service project in April and May. For these reasons I was very happy to welcome back to the club after a short leave, and award her May’s Rotarian of the Month, Congratulation Sherry Higgs – we are so glad you are back and look forward to growing in Rotary with you in the years to come.
My first meeting in June I must say will go down as one of my favorites – I bet you thought Krazy George would be my favorite!!! Although Krazy George was FUN – yesterday was special and moving. First, we heard from one of our newer Niles Rotarians Tina Fernandez Steckler as she did her Icebreaker. And she brought a gift – her favorite bottle of Rosé – a girl after my own heart! She did a little pop quiz and the noncompetitive baseball coach in the house – Sam Forbes – won the wine. Congrats Sam and great idea Tina – fun icebreaker. Our speaker was Sandy Stabile as she gave a very moving yet inspiring look into the life and people of Myanmar (Burma). Sandy works with an organization that does surgery on children with cleft palates called Alliance for Smiles where she gets to be on the front row to see lives, families, and villages changed forever. I wish I had room to go into detail but let’s just say I now truly know why globetrotting with this purpose is such a passion of Sandy’s. We are blessed to have her in our club as she represents all that Rotary is, while handing out pins all over the world with my favorite motto of all time “Mankind is our Business.”
So there you go – I’m almost done, 3 meetings left. I can truly say this has been my BEST year in Rotary. I have laughed, struggled, been stretched, been challenged, learned and grown. I step away humbled by the love and support I have been given by my Niles Rotary family. I have learned the importance of listening (I’m a talker), of patience, that everyone needs to explain but once heard great conversation and solutions can occur, perceptions can change, and so can people. Our club is made up of VERY busy community and business leaders with very full lives and yet they CHOOSE to make Rotary Service a priority. How do you ever say thank you? I don’t think you do – I think the best words are “How can I join you? What else can we do together? How can I play a role in the mission of Service and Peace?” Because that’s what Niles Rotarians do every day; they are not looking for favor or awards – they are simply looking for ways to extend belonging, purpose, and through service bring healing and peace to the world one person, one project, one meal at a time. I look forward to joining you again on the lunch table side and in service to our community.
Most of you know my favorite quote is from Maya Angelou – “People may forget what you say, they may forget what you do, but they will never forget the way you make them feel.”
Thank you Niles Rotary for making me feel like I could do it, even when I didn’t think so, thank you for making me feel cared for through my stumbling at the podium, thank you for embracing some of the changes that were important to me, and thank you for letting me know you always had my back that even if I goofed you would all be there to pick me up. We enjoy a great club and really it has been an honor to be a President of Niles Rotary.