Meeting in Review: June 10, 2015
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Posted by Dennis Cravedi
The meeting was called to order at 12:35 PM by President Jennifer Hara who led members in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Words of inspiration were offered by Nancy Riker who shared a tweet from Biz Stone, the co-founder of Twitter: “Think about what is valuable before thinking about what is profitable and know that there’s compound interest in helping others—start early!”
Secretary Haleh Vaziri introduced the following guests and Rotarians visiting from other clubs:
Catherine Androus, Tour Director of Androus Tours, invited by Marjorie Scott;
- Maria B. Apanio, Consultant at the Inter-American Development Bank, invited by Clara Montanez;
- Caroline A.A. Baker, invited by Marjorie Scott;
- Bennett A. Bramson, working in philanthropy and visiting from Colorado's Aspen Rotary Club;
- Vinette Brown, Development Director of College Summit, invited by President Jennifer Hara;
- Rhett Butler, Owner of Nationwide Takeover, LLC, invited by Kenneth Brown;
- Bernice Chu, Research Associate at the Institute of Medicine, invited by Laura Khor;
- Kevin Clinton, Chief Operating Officer of the Federal City Council, invited by Glen O'Gilvie;
- Tony Dai, Chief Editor of the Economic Information Times, invited by Dr. Sam Hancock;
- Marie Drissel, invited by May Gwinn;
- Daniel Flores, Vice President of the Greater Washington Board of Trade, invited by President Jennifer Hara;
- Kimberly L. Fogg, President of Global Sustainable Partnerships, Inc., invited by Dr. Sam Hancock;
- Ericka Harley, Executive Assistant at the Center for Nonprofit Advancement, invited by Glen O'Gilvie;
- Meco Hart, Executive Assistant to Mike Tyson at Iron Mike Productions, invited by Kenneth Brown;
- Hugh, Administrator of Press, Television and Radio in China's Guizhou Province, invited by Dr. Sam Hancock;
- Juan Jara, Vice President and Area Manager at Eagle Bank, invited by President Jennifer Hara;
- Rustin Lewis, Executive Director of College Summit, invited by President Jennifer Hara;
- Marilyn Livingood, Environmental Scientist, invited by Marjorie Scott;
- Brian Logan of Brian Logan Real Estate, invited by Ed O’Brien;
- Idy Marcus, Founder of E Resolve, invited by Lisa McCurdy;
- Emeka Moneme, Deputy Executive Director of the Federal City Council, invited by Glen O'Gilvie;
- Dennis Motiani, Executive Director of the National Operations Center of Excellence, invited by Tom Kern;
- Develter Noel, visiting and bringing us a banner from Belgium's Menen Rotary Club where he is a past president;
- Alicia Rule, Management Consultant, invited by Abrahem Helal;
- Justin Silveri, Vice President and Relationship Manager at Eagle Bank, invited by President Jennifer Hara;
- Amitra Spencer, Intern at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, invited by Laura Khor;
- Tim Williamson, Research Associate at the University of Maryland, invited by Alicia Fougere; and
- A. Zeitline, CEO of the Editorial Research and Reporting Association, invited by Dr. Sam Hancock.
Acting Sargent-at-Arms Ken Kimbrough announced the birthdays of:
- Darren Crew on 7 June - A member of our club since 2006, sponsored by Norm Coe, Darren practices intellectual property law.
- Jim Freeman on 9 June - A Rotarian since 1966, Jim joined our club in 1979, sponsored by Paul Reichardt. Jim served as our President during 1985-86; his classification is utilities-gas.
- Bill Simmons on 11 June - Joining our club in 1978 with Lloyd Wilson's sponsorship, Bill's classification is insurance-life;
- Monica Conroy on 13 June - A member of our club since 2000, sponsored by Bob Shriner, Monica served as President during 2008-09, and her classification is moving and storage.
President Jennifer made the following announcements:
- The Changing of the Guard will be held on Saturday, 27 June from 5:30 to 7:30 PM at the National Guard Association of the United States on One Massachusetts Avenue, NW. The cost per ticket is $40.
- Movie Night is on Thursday, 18 June. Please see Ed O’Brien and/or May Gwinn to learn where and when the movie-goers are meeting and which film they will see.
- John Jackson needs volunteers for this month’s Grate Patrol. Please talk to him if you are available to help on Tuesday, 16 June and/or on Friday, the 19th.
- Max Salas, whose house caught fire last week, has been transferred to the Georgetown Rehabilitation Center where he is recovering from second-degree burns as well as a broken leg and back. If you would like to contact him with well wishes, Executive Director Gretchen Kearney has the information about how to reach him.
Special Presentation on Our Club’s Signature Fundraiser
Chair of the Signature Fundraiser Committee Lisa McCurdy highlighted next year’s Rubber Duck Derby as an event that will enable our club to help the community while showing off the best of Rotary—creating a family-friendly, fun environment and attracting new members. She extended the club’s appreciation to the committee’s members: Joan Bristol, Jennifer Galloway, Terrance Lovelady, Dan Mullin and Hal Vaughn among others who have so far contributed to this project’s development. Lisa then introduced fundraiser consultant Bennett Bramson.
Visiting from the Rotary Club of Aspen, Colorado, Mr. Bramson explained the benefits of hosting a rubber duck derby—the generation of revenues to benefit local charitable causes and an increase in club membership. He reiterated Nancy Riker’s words of inspiration, stressing that the duck derby exemplifies the Rotary motto of “service above self.” Mr. Bramson showed a short video of the derby hosted by his home club last year, noting that the event invited participation from various groups and engaged the entire community across all ages, while facilitating a great social networking opportunity. The Aspen Rotary Club has gathered sponsors for over 33,000 ducks this year, making it the fourth largest race among Rotary Clubs nationwide. The Cincinnati Club tops the list, having sponsored over 150,000 ducks. Mr. Bramson asserted that we have great potential to lead fundraising numbers among Rotary Clubs across the country.
This Week’s Guest Speaker—Former Mayor Anthony A. Williams
Glen O’Gilvie provided a brief introduction for a well-known and frequent Rotary guest, former DC Mayor Anthony A. Williams—emphasizing his roles as head of the Federal City Council and Chair of the Leadership Council for a Cleaner Anacostia River, established under immediate past Mayor Vincent Gray.
Mayor Tony Williams started by speaking broadly about what he called the “cycles of the American City”—growth, decline and rebirth. Many cities in the United States grew during the early twentieth century, spurred on by industrialization. Suburbanization followed World War II as Americans began fleeing cities in search of better schools, more space and less crime. Mr. Williams described how he, as mayor, had to lead Washington, DC into the third phase of the cycle—rebirth. His mission as he took office in 1999 was to rejuvenate and to transform the “public realm”—the city’s parks, public facilities, buildings and streets. The key components to effecting change within the public realm, he contended, is accountability, transparency, stewardship and public safety.
Mr. Williams talked about his work on the Federal City Council—an organization he said was established to solve some of the city’s most pressing issues through the intervention of its leadership. The Council strives to create private-public partnerships by utilizing private sector means to achieve public sector ends while being mindful that DC operates within a global economy. One of the final points the former Mayor made was to underscore the importance of coordination between government agencies. Referring to his time in the U.S. Air Force, he drew an analogy to the aftermath of the Asiana Airlines flight that crash-landed in San Francisco several years ago in which the Federal Aviation Administration was able to share in real-time, all over the globe, what went wrong and how to correct it. He pointed to the bankruptcies of major American cities—from New York and Cleveland during the 1970s to Washington, DC in the late 1980s to several more in the 1990s and 2000s to Detroit just a couple years ago—insisting that if public officials would share knowledge and experience, such costly mistakes could be averted. That sharing between governments would not only add to the public good but would also foster trust in government.
When Mr. Williams concluded his remarks, there was time for only a few questions. Responding on the topic of Home Rule for DC, the former Mayor stressed that while he is for it, he is “realistic and as a public figure, you need to play the guards that you’re dealt so to speak.” He also praised the “continuity of good government” that the city has enjoyed since he took office and commended the quality of the civil servants that current Mayor Muriel Bowser has appointed.
President Jennifer presented our “Trees for the Capital” certificate to Mayor Williams as Rotarians awaited news of the raffle drawing. May Gwinn bought the lucky ticket from Cherry Baumbusch Claiming the small pot of $53, May did not select the ace of spades from our deck of cards. So the large pot of $1,000 will continue to grow.
Our meeting was supported by Greeter May Gwinn as well as by Balraj Gupta and Stu Shalloway at the Hospitality Table.
At our next meeting on 17 June, we will hear from guest speaker Karl Bergner of Germany’s Embassy to the United States.
President Jennifer adjourned our meeting at 1:35 PM.