DIGITAL EDITION   No. 78   May 28, 2014     EDITOR: Layne Bowen     PHOTOGRAPHER: Diane Moresi

Our Program For June 4th

25-Year Anniversary of the Fall of Communism

Gospe.JeffOur very own member, Jeff Gospe, will speak to the club about the fall of communism in Eastern Europe, starting with the first free elections on June 4, 1989, events he experienced first-hand exactly 25 years ago in Cracow, Poland.

Jeff specialized in Soviet/East European affairs & languages at Stanford University in the late ’80s, where he also worked at the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution & Peace.  Jeff spent most of 1989 as a university student in Eastern Europe and Russia, then joined Ernst & Young for several years as a consultant to multinational corporations and governments in the former Soviet bloc.

Jeff will share his personal experiences living under communism, witnessing its downfall, and working in the earliest days of the transition to market capitalism.



June 11: Rotary Club of Santa Rosa Academy Awards
June 18: Applying the Science of Story to the Art of Communications
June 25: Debunking of President Peggy


Visit our district at:
Check out Rotary International at:
Come see us at:
earn more at:




President Peggy welcomed everyone to what she said is the soon-to-be-FINEST club in District 5130! The Pledge was then led by Ann Gospe who skillfully (due to her military background, no doubt) knew every single word! Tim Delaney then shared some Old Testament wisdom as sort of a keynote to our Town Hall style meeting:

Proverbs 18 (12 though 21)

Pride first, then the crash.
But humility is precursor to honor

Answering before listening,
Is both stupid and rude

A healthy spirit conquers adversity
But what can you do when the spirit is crushed?

Wise men and women are always learning
Always listening for insights

A gift gets attention,
It buys the attention of eminent people

The first speech in a court case is always convincing –
Until the cross examination starts!

You may have to draw straws
When faced with a tough decision.

Do a favor and win a friend forever,
Nothing can untie that bond.

Words satisfy the mind as much as fruit does the stomach,
Good talk is gratifying as a good harvest.

Words kill, words give life:
They’re either poison or fruit – you choose.

Birthday Boy Dick Jenkins

Birthday Boy Dick Jenkins


President Peggy took the opportunity to announce a special birthday recognition for Dick Jenkins, who yesterday celebrated his 90th Birthday. Dick has been a member of our Rotary Club for 44 years. He was a fellow classmate with Former President George H.W. Bush at Yale University. As birthday cake was served, President Peggy then led the club in singing Happy Birthday to Dick and to thank him for all his years of service above self.

Dick, you are truly an inspiration to all of us. You have a great charm, sense of humor, and attitude towards life. You continue to be a gift to our Club!


We have a new proposed member, Home Care Assistance business owner Peter Holewinski, who is sponsored by Debi Zaft.

President Peggy prepares for the Town Hall meeting

President Peggy prepares for the Town Hall meeting


The topics for the Town Hall Meeting were displayed on each table. A sign- up sheet was made available for those wishing to speak.

The purpose of our Town Hall Meeting today was to hear from our membership on our topics at hand. The first topic is the Pillow Fights. Unfortunately, as many of you have already heard, Wayne Rowlands, a very active and cherished member of our club, has resigned from the club due to what was most likely well-intentioned, but in reality, harmful communications concerning the Pillow Fights. So, mistakes have been made and mistakes ARE being made which need to be corrected.

To give just a little timeline to the Pillow Fight topic, the board heard about the idea back in May 2013. There was a group of Rotarians who wanted to put it on and so, brought it to the board for approval. The board had its doubts and questions and told the committee to go back and answer the questions we put to them, do their due diligence and come back when they’ve addressed all that. They did just that. They came back in Feb. 2014 and presented their due diligence report. They addressed the safety, the site, the changes that would be needed, the insurance etc. The board felt better about it and decided to try it for a year and see if it is what we want for the future. It being February already and the PF scheduled for Sept. the Board members felt the pressure of time and wanted to give the committee enough time to be successful. Our mistake was right there. In hindsight we probably could’ve taken a little more time before voting, but we didn’t. We voted “Yes” to the PF and agreed to focus on the Giro Bello until it was over and then focus on the PF. President Peggy apologized for that mistake. Other mistakes are being made. Wayne Rowlands’ exit was due to damaging communication going outside of our club and possibly damaging his reputation in the community.

President Peggy met with 10 -12 Past Presidents last week and we decided to have a forum in which people can communicate their thoughts in a way that would be helpful. The Pillow Fight Committee will be making a presentation to the membership after the Giro Bello is over. This meeting will help them prepare. This meeting will also help the Board understand what the membership is thinking but not saying to the right people.

Doug Johnson

Doug Johnson addresses the members

President Peggy asked Doug Johnson, as Director overseeing our fund raisers to address the membership, and asked Yale Abrams to be our Moderator for today and Jose Guillen and Marnie Goldshlag to be time keepers.

The other four topics were discussed to help us with ideas on how to make our club stronger, more respectful of one another, more fun.

As moderator, Past President Yale Abrams led us in the discussion of the following topics:
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  • Pillow Fights
  • Recommendations for addressing conflict within the club
  • Ideas on how to achieve better communication
  • Getting more members involved in club projects
  • Strengthening the club and making it more fun


Doug Johnson with greeters Wally Lowry and Bart Eddy

Wally Lowry with greeters Doug Johnson and Bart Eddy


Pledge: Ann Gospe
Invocation: Tim Delaney
Ticket Sales: Julia Parranto
Greeters: Bart Eddy and Doug Johnson
Ticket Collector: John McHugh
Note takers: Jack Abercrombie, Matt Fannin, Layne Bowen, Board members
Facilitator: Yale Abrams
Time Keepers: Jose Guillen/ Marnie Goldschlag

After our group discussion, President Peggy left us with the following quote from John F. Kennedy:

In this quote from John F. Kennedy, saying “I’d like you to substitute the word Club for his word “World”.”

“If we cannot end our differences, at least we can make the world safe for diversity.”

John F. Kennedy


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Jose Guillen

Jose Guillen


Karen Ball

Karen Ball

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Kris Andweson

Kris Anderson

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Past President & Master of Ceremonies Yale Abram

Past President & Master of Ceremonies Yale Abram

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Ryan Thomas

Ryan Thomas



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Carmen Sinigiana

Carmen Sinigiani

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Debi Zaft & Don McMillan discuss Giro Bello volunteers

Debi Zaft & Don McMillan discuss Giro Bello volunteers

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Gesine Franchetti

Gesine Franchetti

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Birthday cake for Dick!

Birthday cake for Dick!

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Rick Allen signs Dick's card

Rick Allen signs Dick’s card

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Miss Sunshine (A.K.A. Penny Tibbetts) presents the birthday card

Miss Sunshine (A.K.A. Penny Tibbetts) presents the birthday card


A standing ovation for Dick Jenkins

A standing ovation for the well loved Dick Jenkins



Rotary Club of Santa Rosa Officers

President: Peggy Soberanis, President Elect: Mark Burchill, President Elect Nominee: Jose Guillen, Past President: Bill Rousseau, Secretary: Jack Abercrombie, Treasurer: Cecil G. Humes, Sergeant at Arms: Jack Geary

President Rotary International

Ron D. Burton, member of the Rotary Club of Norman, Oklahoma, USA

Governor, District 5130

Helaine Campbell, Rotary Club of Sebastopol Sunrise

Attendance Secretary

Jack Abercrombie P.O. Box 505 Santa Rosa, CA 95402 707-538-4770

Board of Directors

Tim Delaney, Debra Dorfman, Matt Fannin, Jose Guillen, Doug Johnson, Nicole Le, Robert Pierce, Jack Tolin, Cathy Vicini