About Us

     
                                                                     

                                                                         POINT LOMA ROTARY CLUB HISTORY
                                                      
Club Home Page / District Home Page / Club Bylaws 
 
 Table of      I. INTRODUCTION  II. PLRC SIGHTINGS  III. DONATIVE PROGRAMS  IV. HUMANITARIAN PROJECTS  V. COMMUNITY SERVICE  VI. ROTARIANS   
Contents:       AT WORK   VII. YOUTH PROGRAMS   VIII. SPEAKERS/NEW MEMBERS   
IX. FIELD TRIPS  X. SOCIAL FUNCTIONS   XI. FUTURE PROGRAMS   
    
   
                                                                                                            I. INTRODUCTION 
The PLRC was founded on April 17, 1950. It was incorporated in 1952. Rotary Foundation, the charitable arm of  Rotary International, was founded in 1917. Point Loma Rotary Club Endowment Fund, the charitable arm of the PLRC, was incorporated in 1983. Current operational details, including the distinction between the PLRC Board and its Endowment Board are available here. PLRC Endowment funds as of November 2021, amount to $292,311.  

PLRC members have met at multiple Point Loma venuesand currently, at the San Diego Yacht Club (SDYC). The PLRC meets on Fri days at 12:10 PM at the SDYC, 1011 Anchorage Lane, San Diego, CA 92106. Our postal address is PLRC, P.O. Box 6454, San Diego, CA, 92166, USA (Map). PLRC members have visited or hosted Rotary members from 56 other US clubs−from Hawaii to Florida and from 35 countries and overseas  territories. Click here for the alphabetical listing of those 125 locations. The flags from most of those Rotary venues appear in the adjacent photo by Gus Goldau and Peter Phillips. 

As the PLRC approaches its 2025 Diamond Anniversary, we herein strive to spotlight the extraordinary work   undertaken by the PLRC’s active members, board members, event organizers, and presidents. The PLRC especially recognizes the resolute leadership of its past Presidents and District Governor. They have not led followers. They have inspired leaders. This integrated, evolving club history illustrates its dedication to both Rotary's Four-Way Test. Our club's About Us webpage thus proceeds via the PLRC’s prominent events, with a sprinkling of significant non-fundraising pro- grams portraying the PLRC's social acumen.   

Tech Note: To enlarge 
the size of any narrative, picture, or other image on this webpage: On a PC->  Ctrl +  or on a MAC-> Apple icon, System Preferences, Displays,  Scaled.       
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       II. PLRC SIGHTINGS                                                                                                         
Various PLRC structural projects dot the San Diego landscape. One of them was the Shelter Island gazebo/belvedere, constructed in 1979. It became a focal point for residents, visitors, weddings, and other festive events. The Port District replaced it, in 2005, near the end of Shelter Island Drive.   
                                                                                                                                                                                                 
Contemporary structural evidence of the PLRC's existence includes the Liberty Station Rotary Clock Tower. This sol-
ar powered creation was initiated via a City of San Diego application process. The original $20,000 price tag was
split between the PLRC, Hervey Foundation, and the Davis family. Jim Davis was a mem- ber of PLRC for over 25 years. He served in many capacities, including Club President.
  
Although Jim passed in 2008, this project was completed in 2010, under the direction of Dick Thorn. Dave Lee- dom's photo of the clock's dedication plaque is pictured right. The PLRC is responsible for its perpetual upkeep. Club membersdirected by Dick Thornrefurbished the PLRC clock tower in 2021. It has thus been painted twice, with one battery change.
 
The Cabrillo National Monument is at the southern tip of the Point Loma Peninsula. It commemorates the
landing of Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo at San Diego Bay in 1542. The site was designated as California    Historical Land- mark in 1932. Cabrillo was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1966.                                                                                                                                                                                  
The Cabrillo National Monument Tidepool Plaque (pictured left) lists the several organizations, including the  PLRC's $3,500 contribution, to the evolution and enhancement of the Point's environment. The tidepools, also known as the Rocky Intertidal Zone, offer amazing views of the Pacific Ocean, and the opportunity to discover the native plants and species that live in this unique habitat. The pictured trailer, on which the above plaque is affixed, is used by park rangers to gather and take shift breaks. These Cabrillo photos were provided by Leon Scales. 

The Village Lights plan was developed by the Point Loma Association (PLA) in cooperation with the County and City of San Diego. PLA identifies and advocates for public realm improvements that contribute to the quality, character, culture, and livability of the Peninsula. Construction began the summer of 2021. 

The PLA gathered sponsors to create a series of light assemblies at various locations in Point Loma. This initiative was  supported by a PLRC donation. Its acknowledgment plaque (pictured left) appears on the southside of Rosecrans Street      Photo by Gus Goldau       on the blue light pole at Rosecrans and Canon Streets. May 7, 2022 was the grand opening of the area's City Lights                                                project.                                                                                                                                                                                                          Photo by Bill S   
                                                                    
               
All PLRC projects are humanitarian in nature, because Rotary's raison d'être is to serve humanity. But they can be organized into some descriptive subcategories, beginning with:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        III. DONATIVE PROGRAMS                                                                                                RIDE THE POINT (RTP)
This is the PLRC’s largest fundraiser. In its nine-year existence (2013-2021), RTP’s total proceeds have been $248,000. The PLRC donates the RTP funds to UCSD's Moores Cancer Center.  
 
The purpose of the event is to connect our community by providing the Family-friendly (6- mile), Enthusiast (25-mile), and Metric Century (62-mile) bicycle rides. Each of them highlight the natural beauty, historical sites, recreational opportunities, and healthy lifestyles available in the Point Loma area. The associated Healthy Lifestyle Expo is a showcase for local business and non-profits. It is open to the public and usually attracts hundreds of spectators. 

PLRC Rotarian Rich Stakelum has valiantly shepherded this annual event from the outset. His army of 250 volunteers were enlisted from the Point Loma Association, Peninsula Lyons Club, San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, Rotaract Club, Point Loma Nazarene University, Grossmont College, UCSD Moores Cancer Center, and the San Diego Gulls. For sponsorship  opportunities, click here.   
 
Richard and Gale Krause are pictured here, when an earlier RTP donation
was presented to the Moores Cancer Center. Gale's hus band Jim Krause was a 35-year PLRC Rotarian−who died of pancreatic cancer in 2012.                                                             Photo by Leon Scales: Krause family---Gale Krause (center),                                                                                                                                                                                                       Richard Stakelum & Tim McCully, past President
The ride begins and ends at Liberty Station. The event is advertised in local, state, national, and inter- national venues. Many of the 2021 RTP’s 762 ridersages 5-94came from outside the local community, including out-of-state and international riders. The 2021 cohort came from Los Angeles and Ventura Counties, Big Bear, Tahoe, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Texas, Washington, Wisconsin, Utah, Italy, Germany, and Mexico. VIP riders included local, state, and federal community leaders and media personalities. 
 
The most inspiring “snapshot” of this annual event is the 2019 video, narrated by Gale Krause. Her son Andrew and Steve Ford (Jim’s riding buddy) are pictured here, during the 2021 RTP. Andrew is riding Jim’s bike. Every year, either Andrew or Gale's her son Mark rides Jim’s bike. The 2022 RTP date is Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022. 
 
                    Photo by Sarah Hervey                    
                    
  POLIO ERADICATION                                                                                                                                     
Background. For over 30 years, Rotary and its partners have driven the effort to eradicate polio worldwide. Rotary’s PolioPlus program was the first initiative to tackle global polio eradication by vaccinating children on a massive scale. As a core partner in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), Rotary members have contributed more than $2.2 billion and countless volunteer hours to protect nearly 3 billion children in 122 countries from polio. Rotary’s advocacy efforts have played a role in decisions by governments to contribute more than $10 billion to the effort.

When Rotary and its partners formed the GPEI in 1988, there were 350,000 cases of polio in 125 countries every year. Today, they have reduced polio cases by 99.9 percent. Nearly 19.4 million people are walking, who would otherwise be paralyzed.  Over 1.5 million people are alive, who otherwise would have died. Further detail is available in RI's World Polio Day 2021 video.   

Liberty Station Stroll. 
World Polio Day is October 23 of each year.On that day, in 2019-2021, the PLRC's Liberty Station Stroll has fundraised to assist in the quest to totally eradicate this paralyzing dis- ease. Due to club member generosity, annual Polio Plus giving averages $3,000 which in turn immunizes 5,000 child- ren against this terrible disease. 
 
In addition, all Polio Plus donations are matched 2-1 by the Bill and Melinda Gate Foundation. That multiplier effect yields a significant value added to all Polio Plus giving.   
Prior PLRC Polio Programs.
 [TBA]                                       

Paul Harris AwardPaul Harris, and several others, held the first Rotary Club meeting in 1907 in Chicago. The Paul Harris Fellow recognition was established in 1957. It acknowledges individuals who contribute, or who have contributions made in their name, of $1,000 to The Rotary Foundation. One becomes a Rot- ary Foundation Sustaining Member upon donating $100, or more, per year to the Annual Fund. One becomes a Society Member upon donating $1,000, or more, each year to the Annual Fund, or Polio Plus, or approved Foundation grants.   

The purpose of the Paul Harris Society is to honor and thank individuals for their generous, ongoing support of The Rotary Founda- tion. Rotary districts often honor new members of the Paul Harris Society by presenting them with a certificate and chevron at a district or club event. For the various donation levels in the Paul Harris wheelhouse, click here. A number of our members have contributed multiple times−including a Platinum Foundation Circle recipient, who has thus donated 12 times.       

Paul Harris Society gifts have helped provide:
• Vocational training for teachers establishing an early childhood education center in South Africa • Water filters, toilets, and hygiene training to prevent fluorosis, diarrhea, and other diseases in India • A scholarship for a medical professional in Italy to research treatments that minimize mortality rates among premature babies • Peace-building seminars for 200 teachers and 1,300 students in Uganda • Treated mosquito nets and medical
services that prevent malaria in Mali.                                    

The number of Paul Harris Fellows reached the 1 million mark in 2006. Notable figures have been named Paul Harris Fellows.  They include U.S. President Jimmy Carter; Russian President Boris Yeltsin; U.S. astronaut James Lovell; UN Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar; and polio vaccine developer Jonas Salk. The notable Paul Harris Fellow, Rob Cenko, is pictured here− when receiving his latest Paul Harris recognition.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     IV. HUMANITARIAN PROJECTS                                                 Photo by Frank White

FIJI WATER SANITATION PROJECT                                                                                               
Fiji's tropical paradise consists of breath-taking rainforests and lush vegetation. But it does not have safe drinking water.
Fijian villages suffer chronic outbreaks of waterborne diseases like typhoid, leptospirosis, and dysentery. Rainwater stored in volcanic rock catchments is contaminated with disease from vegetation and runoff, particularly after heavy rains−as depicted in this linked villager's video. Debra Gookin thus shepherded an innovative think-globally-act-globally project. 

The first of two related projects started in 2014 and ended in 2016. The PLRC immediately submitted a second grant           proposal in 2016. It completed that project in 2019. Debra's many visits to Fiji inspired her to develop and oversee these                           PLRC Sweat Equity                 projects. The PLRC worked with Fiji’s Savasavu Rotary Club, Rotary Club of San Diego, and the Fijian Ministry of Health, to build and deploy 870 Safe Water Fil- tration Stations (SWFS). These SWFS devices are serving over 4,000 villagers in Fiji.

Each device consists of two buckets, a super-fine micron filter, a stand to put it all on, and instructions on how to use it to remove bugs and disease laden organisms. The stands were designed and prefabricated in San Diego via Rotarian labor. They were then shipped to the Fiji villages. The related training and installation were done in close partnership with the Fiji Ministry of Health. Its employees and nurses live in the SWFS villages. They thus train the families in their respective dialectsand thus, local inhabitants training Fijian residents. The filtration systems are deployed without disrupting the Fijian village culture. Once trained, the Fijians take the water stations home, to set them up for individual use.  Residents who have these portable SWFS are thus able to easily get water to drink. That helps them avoid sickness caused by contaminated water.  

Debra, and the PLRC Rotarians who worked on this long-distance venture, take pride in the health improvement facilitated by their "hands on" adventuretwo Global Grant projects to install water filtration systems in homes, clinics, and schools. 

Rotary International Global Grant projects are the most highly esteemed form of Rotary projects. They are selected through a comprehensive evaluation process. It was a major accomplishment to complete them as successfully as done by the PLRC. Its members are thus proud of the villagers' uniformly positive reactions to this substantial improvement in their daily lives. Pictured in the adja- cent photo of a Fijian SWFS storage facility are: Fiji Minister of Health−the Hon. Jone Usamate, Fiji's Sava- savu Rotary Club project leader Jeff Mather, and PLRC project leader Debra Gookin.    

SHELTER BOX PROJECT
Background. In April 2000, a Cornwall, England Rotary Club adopted ShelterBox as its millennium project. ShelterBox ultimately became the largest Rotary Club project in the world, with affiliates in countries across the globe. ShelterBox provides emergency shelter to people affected by disasters and humanitarian crises. The ShelterBox staff and volunteers have helped to shelter and provide aid to over 2.1 million people−in over 100 countries.
 
By the end of 2004, nearly 2,600 boxes had been dispatched, following 16 major disasters. In 2005, ShelterBox provided more than 22,000 boxes−including to a number of those who had lost their homes during Hurricane Katrina. In 2018, with the support of Rotary Clubs from around the world, ShelterBox provided shelter and supplies for 210,000 people whose lives were devastated by disaster. ShelterBox was able to respond to world events 18 times, sending a variety of essential shelter and aid items to 17 different countries. In most of them, local Rotary clubs provided invaluable in-country assist- ance. Pictured: ShelterBox units in Chad's Niger Lake Basin. 
 
PLRC Contributions. A ShelterBox HERO is a Rotary Club that has committed to making an ongoing impact in worldwide disaster response by pledging to support ShelterBox annually for three consecutive years. Sustained annual donations help ShelterBox stay prepared for upcoming disasters. HERO Clubs enable ShelterBox to have the resources to timely respond when disaster strikes. Clubs like ours thus allow Shelter Box to purchase and pre-position such aid, resulting in a more efficient and timely disaster response. 
 
Upon the third year of consecutive giving, HERO Clubs like the PLRC receive a banner reflective of their giving level. As 
provided on the ShelterBox webpage: “We can always be confident that your [RI] organization will lead the world in the speedy reaction to these disasters, through the efficiency of your logistical and management structure and the dedication of your members.” In 2009, long-term PLRC member Tim McCully became the PLRC’s ShelterBox Ambassador−our PLRC liaison with the ShelterBox charity. The 2021 PLRC check for $2,000 (pictured right) will buy two shelter boxes. They will be de- livered to two families in dire need of humanitarian relief. PLRC's total dona- tions for this project now stand at $13,000. At the end of the 2021-2022 Rotary Year, the PLRC will be listed on the HERO page. Upon its dispatch of the Shelter Box Silver Award (pictured left), the organization commented that: "We could not have reached them without clubs like yours."                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Photo by Frank White 
Ukraine Project. Russia's 2022 invasion of Ukraine triggered a prompt club-wide response. The early March meeting Invoca-
tion linked this epic event with RI's 4 Way Test for all things Rotary (weblinked above). The ensuing bottom-up club member initiative reacted to hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians fleeing the Russian government’s invasion. Led by Tim McCully, Point Loma Rotarians−−expressed a keen interest in an immediate club response to this humanitarian crisis. By engaging RI's Humani- tarian Assistance−Disaster Relief Partner ShelterBox, the Club provided $5,500 in one week: $1,500 from the Club Endowment Fund, joined by $4,000 in private individual donations!  
 
PLRC's immediate response took advantage of available matching funds from a ShelterBox major donor, resulting in a total of $11,000 of real-time support to Ukrainian refugees. With a ShelterBox team already on the ground in Poland−where approxi- mately half of the Ukrainian refugees are now located−ShelterBox used the funds to distribute winter clothing, blankets, heaters, tents and shelter kits to arriving refugees. (Jpeg created by Margaret Varissimo.)
        
          
                                                                                                                                                                                                          
BARREL OF BOUNTY
Rob Cenko initiated this program in 2019. The Barrel of Bounty moniker was spawned by the view that PLRC members have had good fortune bestowed upon   them−and their bounty can be shared with those less fortunate. PLRC club members can thus embrace the connection of contributing to a group in need. Dur- ing the first found of PLRC COVID responses, Shannon Osborne thus donated dinners to the three beach area fire departments: Ocean Beach, Point Loma, and the Morena District.   
                                                                                                                                      
This program is designed to support organizations in the following demographic groups−one for each quarter−Q1: Seniors; Q2: At-risk youth; Q3: Veterans; Q4: Food distribution banks, or faith-based groups in the local community. Barrel of Bounty also supports a local organizational group−Veteran’s Village of San Diego. VVSD has served all veterans since 1981. It is nationally recognized as the leader in serving homeless military veterans. VVSD provides services to more than 3,000 military veterans throughout San Diego. PLRC thereby supports local veterans in a very tangible way. 

At present, Rob and Shannon shop at the Dollar Store and Big Lots, fetching various goods for this project. PLRC members bring   such necessities to the weekly Rotary luncheons or to Shannon's home. Club members thereby provide useful products−that are inexpensive to purchase.                                                                                                                                                                                                  
Barrel of Bounty has a cash donation component. The PLRC club’s membership has the oppor- tunity to donate a (non-specified) amount each quarter. This prog ram has served the San Diego Blood Bank and Surf Riders. PLRC’s latest donation was to Birth Line of San Diego, pre-  sented by Shannon Osborne at a recent Rotary luncheon (pictured left).                                                       Flyer by Ray Blavat

The above flyer has been sent to various organizations. They can thus: (1) initiate a related campaign at their offices; and (2) distribute the flyer to their vendors and contractors. The goal is to reach out to their clients to help market Barrel of Bounty, to congeal as many organizations as possible at each venue, and to help our less fortunate community members. 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
THOUSAND SMILES FOUNDATION                                                                                                                                                                   
Background. The Thousand Smiles Foundation provides free maxillofacial surgery, dental treatment, and various associated proce- dures to children from financially challenged families in Mexico. This project is totally funded by donations−including but not limited to Rotary International Grants, grants from other foundations, individual Rotary Club donations, and personal donations. Some essential details can be accessed via the 4-minute video−narrated primarily by the Coronado Rotary Club’s Dr. Jim Vernetti. This project is com- pletely managed and run by volunteers. Both professional and other volunteers donate their services and time.

PLRC 2022 Participation. Our club launched its participation in June 2021. It invited Bob Chalifa to speak to the PLRC club members      about the Thousand Smiles organization. He is its Auxiliary Treasurer, Past President (1987-1989), and on the Board of Directors since 1985. A cohort of PLRC volunteers will journey south to the Thousand Smile Foundation’s operation at Ensenada Mexico's General Hos- pital. For two days, they will volunteer their time to make lunches for the estimated 100 volunteers who will participate in  this heart-wrenching to heart-warming triumph.    
 
                                                                                               V. COMMUNITY SERVICE
VETERAN'S FISHING DAY                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            In 2018, club members Alan Brown and Carter Shuffler initiated a PLRC program called Veteran's Fishing Day. They chartered the Malihini (pictured left in
2021)−to take a boatload of veterans for a day of ocean fishing. The California Fish and Wildlife agency authorized a free no-license day for the vets. V.V.S.D. brought these military vets to the pier.

Donuts and Starbucks coffee were provided, when the veterans and PLRC volunteers first arrived at the pier. A trio of singers known as the Sweethearts of Swing, were dressed in period WAC outfits while singing World War II songs. The event was recorded in this vibrant videocrafted by CaliforniaLifeHD on the first Veteran's Fishing Day (2018). 

Most of the veterans had never been fishing offshore. But these 40 inexperienced anglers, fly-lining live bait for tuna aboard the deck of the rocking and rolling Malihini, enjoyed this exhilarating experience. A Malihini deckhand gave a brief seminar at the bait tank, plus hands-on training at the rails. This is now an annual event (but for Covid), supported by various organizational sponsors and PLRC volun- teers. It was featured in a Western Outdoor News story (Oct. 18, 2019). 

PLRC EAST COUNTY VETERAN'S STANDOWN
There is a pressing need to help people on the street, including both veterans and civilians. Rob Cenko and Doug Nau embraced that need in east county, by contacting social service groups. He amassed various resources to put together the PLRC's first east county mini-Stand Down. This PLRC event is modeled after the annual Veterans Village Stand Down. Veterans Village of San Diego (VVSD) has served all veterans since 1981. It is dedicated to the theme “Leave No One Behind.”

For over forty years, VVSD has sought to provide services and support to our nation’s heroes. Each
year, VVSD helps thousands of our most vulnerable veterans to re- claim their lives−through pro-grams programs offering transitional and permanent housing, mental health counseling, substance use treatment, and employment and training services. 

png by Ray Blavatt         Rob coordinated the first east county version of VVSD’s annual Stand Down−PLRC's Wellness Fair−with co-organizer Doug Nau, CEO of My KoZee, Carl Reed at V.V.S.D. (both pictured right, with Shannon Osborne, Community Service Director), other service groups, and some governmental agencies. The event was held on April 21, 2022, at the and some governmental VFW Hall, 136 Chambers Street, El Cajon, CA. Pictured left: Stand Down Family Health Medical Group. Pictured right: Stand Down Red Cross Blood Mobile Group. The group photo (below left) commemorates the providers who participated in the Stand Down.

The participants saved a soul−a suicidal vet with ulcers on his feet and legs, diabetic, and in critical condi- tion−who was taken to an ER. He would have otherwise likely died on the El Cajon streets. Another vet learned that he qualified for more benefits, due to his exposure to Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. He had no clue about his entitlement. 
 
The Stand Down offered haircuts and beard trims. Other student volunteers canvased the general area, in search of vets, to give them notice of this event. That search also produced five vets from the recent Middle East conflicts and five civilians−all of whom ex-pressed their deep appreciation for services rendered.  

This event garnered Channel 10 TV exposure. That coverage prompted the incoming Lakeside   VFW Commander to drive to the event−with a view toward hosting a like event at her local  hall. The Mayor met with every provider. He personally thanked them, and the PLRC for its  participation. County Supervisor Joel Anderson prepared Certificates of Appreciation for all attendees. Photos were taken by Paul Mitchell Barber School personnel. Pictured right are Darnisha Hunter (Regional Taskforce for Homeless), Rob Cenko (PLRC Pres. Elect), Bill Wells (El Cajon Mayor), and Lili Patch (PLRC club member).     
 
SAINT PAUL'S MANOR HOLIDAY SING ALONG
This event exemplifies the heartfelt sharing that PLRC members offer the local community, during the Christmas  season− since 1989. PLRC member Dick Thorn has served on the Board of St. Paul’s Senior Homes and Services since 1992. The late Mifflin Ward, Dick’s mentor in Rotary and law, had been a resident at St. Paul’s senior living facility. Dick drove Mr. Ward to the weekly Rotary meetings.

Over the years, various PLRC members have been residents and patients at St. Paul’s. Our members have both sung, and been sung to, by other PLRC club members. As Dick describes this annual holiday Sing Along: “It is our own ‘Circle of Life.’ It means a great deal to me. We meet those we might have never met otherwise, to share a most rewarding  afternoon. We get so much from them. I wouldn’t trade that time for anything.” 
 
OPERATION HOLIDAY HELPING HAND
In 2021, the PLRC’s Rotary Endowment Fund celebrated its 16th year of partnering with the San Diego Yacht Club and the San Diego Armed Services YMCA for a very special program. The SDYC’s Holiday Helping Hand tradition helps military families cope with serious physical, financial, and separation concerns.
 
Recipients are local military families, primarily lower-ranked enlisted personnel, who are decidedly in need of a helping hand during the holidays. Each family is carefully screened by the Armed Services YMCA for recent struggles with challenging financial difficulties.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    
DISTRICT's MEMBER RECOGNITION 
Congratulations to Point Loma Rotarian Mike Whitehurst on receiving the Citation for Meritorious Service from the Rotary Foundation Board of Trustees. Mike has served on the District Foundation Committee for many yearsin the role of District Grants Chair, and now as Major Gifts/ Legacy Giving Co-Chair. He has done a number of grants in India and has traveled to India as part of his involvement with these grants.
 
Mike is currently responsible for procuring the PLRC's weekly luncheon speakers.  

OCEAN BEACH CLEANUP 
The Ocean Beach Veterans Park (at Abbott and Newport) was the site of the May 2022 PLRC, San Diego Blood Bank, and San Diego  Voter Registration beach annual cleanup event. Also in attendance was Pt. Loma’s Warren Walker grade school, Caesar Chavez Jr. High, and the USD women's basketball team.

Surfrider Foundation of San Diego County is a community of people who protect the ocean and beaches for all to enjoy. Its mem- bers endeavor to promote clean water, coastal preservation, ocean protection, beach access, and the reduction of plastic pollu- tion.

The San Diego County Chapter is part of Surfrider’s national network of grassroots activists. Its members serve as the first res- ponse to local threats to the county’s 72 miles of coastline. They are the boots on the ground, who implement this mission through campaign, program, and educational initiatives in San Diego County’s communities. 
 
                                                    VI. ROTARIANS AT WORK 
In addition to all the programs that the PLRC has generated, the last Saturday of every April is Rotarians at Work Day (RAWD). This RI program began in 2006. It was a joint effort between two Rotary Districtsone in the United States and one in Mexico. 

Club members are asked to donate four hours of their time to various designated projects. See, for example, the installation of the PLRC Rotarian clock at Liberty Station−pictured left, with our club members in their RAWD t-shirts. (See Rotary Clock Tower project described in the above Introduction.)  

Pictured right is the 2015 RAWD work product near the "Hat." That structure on Shelter Island replaced the gazebo paid for by the PLRC in 1979. PLRC workers de-weeded and planted some greenery to improve the otherwise barren land adjacent to the Hat. 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Photo by Dave Leedom
The left photo was taken at the Point Loma Correia Middle School in 2006. PLRC members cleaned the 
school’s north-facing grounds of trash and leaves. Dave Brum- mersted (far right) is proudly displaying a momentous “find.” See the dug-up gear wheel−which resembles the Rotary wheel in the background Rotarians at Work banner. The young Rot- arians in training are former member 
Byron White's daugh- ters.
 
The right photo was taken on the Ocean Beach SeaWorld Drive entrance. PLRC club members worked there over a two-year span (2007-2008) to help beautify that entrance. Former mem- ber Pete Hedley's most helpful grandchildren posed in front of the banner. Both photos were taken by Judy Byram−then Club Photographer and Community Service Director.  

On February 25, 2022, Point Loma Association (PLA) Historian Maureen Summers was  the PLRC Rotary luncheon speaker. She rekindled the PLA-PLRC connection by including
these pictures in her presentation. Club member Dave de Rosier’s wife Kerri penned the
description of the Utility Box Project that she and Dave devised in Summer 2011. The 
following is an edited version of her account (linked here (p.5-6):        

The Point Loma Rotary Club was looking for a new project for its annual Rotarians at Work Day. Kerri asked Dave if the club would consider prepping boxes for the upcoming utility box project−and cleaning existing boxes. That theme morphed into dedicating a box to various area service clubs for their work. PLRC sponsored the box at Catalina and Talbot.

On cleanup/prep day, the PLA divided the individual box sponsors into four teams. Each group proceeded to work with buckets, blue tape, rollers, paint brushes, Goo Gone, Simple Green, scrub brushes, and sponges. Dave and Kerri deliv- ered water to the troops. The teams prepping the boxes had to first clean boxes (several are pictured right), let them dry, then come back and prime them. As Kerri remarked: “They did a terrific job, and we thank them!” Pictured right is the artist, Julia Anderson. Kerri de Rosier took this photograph.     
 
 
                                                                                               VII. YOUTH PROGRAMS 
ROTARY YOUTH LEADERSHIP AWARD (RYLA)
The RYLA program originated with Rotary International in 1972. It was modified by District 5340 for the students in San Diego and Imperial Counties. The RYLA award is directed to 11th grade students. They submit an essay and are interviewed by a panel of Rotarians. Those chosen attend a three-day, no-cost camp. It encourages leadership in youth, inspired by a diverse group of exceptional speakers. The students make life-long friends, and discuss the ethical and social issues of the day.

Students are grouped into 32 "families" of 8-9 students and one Rotarian Facilitator. These families are identified by a name chosen to represent a large US university, such as USC or Michigan. The families spend the three 
days as a cohesive unit, listen- ing to the various speakers, gathering as a unit to discuss what les-
sons they learned, doing team building exercises, and generally modelling the maturity and discipline that resulted in their parti- cipation in RYLA.

The PLRC is allocated four slots for students from Point Loma High School. Space at the camp is limited to about 300 total stu-
dents. As articulated by club member Jim Piburn: “With the sizeable number of participating Rotary Clubs and high schools, we
feel very blessed. We have been participating with RYLA selection since 2009.” During most of the past decade, PLRC has been 

able to get at least one club member to participate as a Facilitator.

LEADERSHIP, ETHICS, ASPIRATION, and DETERMINATION (LEAD)                                                                                                     
The comparable youth LEAD program is a two-day leadership and personal development program for 8th grade middle school students. They are selected by their school administrators−chosen for their maturity, leadership skills, and academic excellence. Each participating school selects one young man and one young woman. The camp is developed and presented by Rotarians in District 5340 and comes at no cost to the student or the participating schools. All ex- penses are paid by the Rotary Clubs of District 5340.
 
The PLRC has four spaces for LEAD students−two from Correia Middle School, and two from Warren-Walker. Space at the camp is limited to about 200 total students. The PLRC has been participating with LEAD for over 10 years. At least one club member participates as a Facilitator at this camp as well.

RYLA-LEAD Comparison
RYLA lets the high school students drive the direction of their experience. The LEAD grade school experience is more structured. It provides seminars on ethical responsibility, and improving leadership and communication skills. These eighth graders meet students from throughout Southern California. This program facilitates shared experiences, which improves the empathy for, and the understanding of others.

                                                                                                           VIII. SPEAKERS/NEW MEMBERS
 
Current CurriculumFor dates and weekly/monthly speaker information, click here. Starting in 2021, the PLRC launched an adjunct speaker program for its Friday club member meetings. Local entrepreneurs thus share their expertise to benefit club members, while introducing the PLRC to potential club members. Mike Whitehurst is the current Speakers Program Director.  

The PLRC has hosted a rich cohort of prominent speakers for most of its existence. Recent examples include:            
* Capt. Kenneth R. Franklin, Director of San Diego's former SpaWar cybersecurity facility, now known as the Naval Information Warfare Systems Command           
* Capt. Tim Quast, Commanding Officer of the USS Mercy, a Navy hospital ship that has served as an emergency Covid-19 hospital
* Shawn Dixon, Chief Operating Officer of the San Diego Zoo
* Matthew Dobbs, public liaison for the San Diego Police Homicide  Department, and 
                                                      * Nora Vargas, San Diego County Board of Supervisors.   
                                                   
Pictured above left are Carlos Gonzalez Gutierrez, Counsel General of Mexico for San Diego receiving the Ride the coveted Ride the Point hat from Club President Gus Goldau (Dec. 2021). Pictured above right is Mandy Havlik and family (Mar. 2022). In addition to becoming an new PLRC member, Mrs. Havlik is running for the San Diego City Council seat for District 2. Photos by Rob Cenko. 
                
Other Programming. The PLRC and the Pt. Loma (branch) Hervey Library have been connected since 2000. Each week, the club donates a book−obtained from the Hervey Library−to the guest speaker. In April 2022, the PLRC's guest speaker, Library Director Christine Gon-
zalez (photo left by Robert Cenko), addressed the PLRC at the Hervey Library.     
                                                                                                                                                                          

Much of the library's design follows a nautical theme. It thus includes a faux ship's hull, and an actual working peri- scope from the USS Flasher (photo right by Christine Gonzelez). It extends from the lower floor to the roof. Patrons can thereby enjoy a 360-degree view of the surrounding community. A rotunda, with a terrazzo map of the Point Loma peninsula on the floor, was designed to be a pivot point between the library and the community meeting area. 

This state-of-the-art facility holds 80,000 books and other materials. Book stacks were designed in a radiating fashion so that library staff at the central desk has visual control of most of the library. The roof forms simulate waves breaking on a beach. The Hervey Library is thus a beacon/landmark for the neighborhood that is reminiscent of the region's most notable landmark, the Point Loma Lighthouse. 

MEMBERSHIP OPTIONS
 
New Members. “Rotary Club” means a local club of business and professional men and women. It is a member of the world-wide organization of similar clubs (Rotary International). These clubs are devoted to serving local, regional, or inter- national communities−with a view toward promo- ting world peace. One can become a Rotary member by expressing your interest. If you know someone in one or more of the various clubs in San Diego, ask to be invited to a meeting. Your host will give you an application at the meeting. Alternatively, you can fill out the application contact form, then attend a meeting. You can thereafter click on the New Members page.

Costs: You will normally not be charged for attending your first meeting, depending on each club’s visitor policy. You are encouraged to attend a meeting at a club, or clubs, in which you have an interest in joining. PLRC monthly dues−shared with Rotary's District and International Rotary arms−are $35.00. Weekly luncheons, for attendees who opt to share the meal, cost $25.00.  

From Red to Blue Badge. You will be issued a red badge, with your name and professional identity, upon joining the Point Loma Rotary Club. After taking several steps, you will then be issued a replacement blue badgedesignating you as an Ac- tive Member. Pictured here are Gina Varissimo, her daughter Margaret Varissimothe PLRC's latest member to earn her blue Active Member- ship badge (November 2021)and Club President Gus Goldau. 

Rotary Dashboard. Prospective members can visit Rotary's worldwide webpage. It answers questions one might ask before joining. Members who are new or seasoned can learn more about the Rotary experience via the My Rotary Member Dashboard. It is a place for              Photo by Leon Scales
Rotary members to access tools and information that will improve their membership experience. See especially the Member Center on the Dashboard website.  
 
                                                                                                                     IX. FIELD TRIPS
MERCY TOUR
The PLRC toured the hospital ship USNS Mercy (TAH-19), at the Naval Station San
Diego. This buoyant event was arranged by club member Tim McCully. While on active duty in the US Navy, Tim was Commodore, Military Sealift Command (MSC) Pacific from 2000-2002with headquarters at the Naval Submarine Base on Point Loma. 

While subsequently serving as MSC's Liaison Officer to the Pacific Fleet Command- er, Tim was privileged to be the MERCY Task Group's Commodore for three months in 2005. MERCY then provided humanitarian assistance and disaster relief during its mission to Indonesia, East Timor, and Papua New Guinea. In a classic example of "What goes around, comes around," Tim arranged for the then current captain of the Mercy, Captain Tim Quast, to provide an inspiring pre-
sentation about MERCY's duties.                                                                                                                                          Photo by Tim McCully                                                                             
These include providing emergency, on-site care for U.S. combatant forces deployed in both war and peacetime operations. The ship (and her sister ship on the East Coast, USNS COMFORT) provides rapid, flexible, and mobile medical and surgical services to support Marine Corps Air-Ground Task Forces and Army and Air Force units deployed ashore, naval amphibious task forces, and battle forces afloat. The ship is sailed by U.S. Merchant Marine civil service mariners, while the 1000-bed hospital is staffed by U.S. Navy Medical Corps personnel.     

 

HERVEY LIBRARY VISIT
The PLRC and the Pt. Loma (branch) Hervey Library have been connected since 2000. Each week, the club donates a book−obtained from the Hervey Library−to the guest speaker. In April 2022, the PLRC's guest speaker, Library Director Christine Gonzalez (photo left by Robert Cenko), addressed the PLRC at the Hervey Library.     
                                                                                                                                                                          

Much of the library's design follows a nautical theme. It thus includes a faux ship's hull, and an actual working peri- scope from the USS Flasher (photo right by Christine Gonzelez). It extends from the lower floor to the roof. Patrons can thereby enjoy a 360-degree view of the surrounding community. A rotunda, with a terrazzo map of the Point Loma peninsula on the floor, was designed to be a pivot point between the library and the community meeting area. 

This state-of-the-art facility holds 80,000 books and other materials. Book stacks were designed in a radiating fashion so that library staff at the central desk has visual control of most of the library. The roof forms simulate waves breaking on a beach. The Hervey Library is thus a beacon/landmark for the neighborhood that is reminiscent of the region's most notable landmark, the Point Loma Lighthouse. 

 
                                                                                                                                X. SOCIALS & MIXERS                                            
COMEDY NIGHT 
On March 11, 2022, the PLRC conducted its 19th annual Comedy Night. It benefits vital local charities. They assist future leaders from 
Point Loma schools, seniors, and critical international programsincluding Shelter Boxes for survivors of disasters across the globe. (See PLRC's above Shelter Box program.) 
 
This event featured several professional comedians. Comedy Night is an ideal opportunity for club members to gather for an evening filled with great humor. It will once again be emceed by the PLRC's lone Honorary Member−Tony Calabrese (pictured right). He is back again, as our inspiration, event creator, talent scout, and master of ceremonies. Tony is an immensely popular and award-winning comedian. Point 
Loma Rotary Club contributes all the proceeds of every Comedy Night to member-supported club programs. In addition to public sales, each PLRC member is asked to sell $200 worth of tickets. The various donation levels include: GOLD: $50 ▪ Name and a full-page ad in the event program ▪ Company Banner to be display-ed displayed on the stage as guests are seated ▪ The opportunity to distribute promotional items to audience members ▪ Pro-
minent name recognition on all event publicity, and ▪ Five tickets with VIP reserved seating ($125 value). SILVER: $250 ▪ Prominent name and logo recognition ▪ A on flyers distributed throughout ▪ Name and a full-page ad in the event program ▪ Company Banner to be displayed on the stage Half Page ad in the event  pro- gram ▪ Four tickets ($100 value). BRONZE: $100 ▪ A Quarter Page ad in the program ▪ Two tickets ($50 value). SUPPORTER: $5. Donations are tax-deductible. 

Tony is currently the PLRC's only Honorary Member. He has hosted the club's Comedy Night for two decades. As a thank you, 
Gus Goldau and Dick Thorn presented Tony with this plaque on behalf of a grateful PLRC in March 2022 
  

The event venue is the United Portuguese S.E.S. Hall, 2818 Avenida de Portugal, Point Loma, San Diego, CA 92106 (pictured left). The outer parking area gates open at 7:00 PM. The program begins at 8:00 PM.  
 
DISTRICT 5340 SOCIALS                                                                                                                            The District Governor hosts periodic district-wide mixers. Their objective is to introduce Rotary to potential members. The first 2022 event was held in North County. The second was located at the Legacy Hotel-Convention Center in Mission Valley.  
   
District (and PLRC) PLRC mixers and social events often forge life-long friendships. They facilitate a collective view that we all should serve and give back to others. Together, we enjoy drinking and dining, with a diverse group of like-minded good Samaritans−whose underlying raison d'ê·tre is raising funds for multiple philanthropic causes. Members also graciously open their homes to provide an enjoyable evening of food, drink, and lively conversation with club members and families.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Not pictured: Kay Barron  
                                                                                                             XI. FUTURE PROGRAMS                                                                                                                                                                   
This is an evolving website. It will be continually updated. PLRC members are thus encouraged to submit ideas for potential inclusion on this site. 
                                                                                                 
Please contact the Club Historian if you have a picture of which you are particularly proud. That could be the trigger or another About Us addition. If you have a cache of pictures for Rotary preservation, contact James Morrison.     
                                      
                                                 © PLRC Club Historian
                                                                      Last rev: 05/20/22