Club Dark November 23, 2022
Happy Thanksgiving !

Next meeting
Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Chairman of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors

David Rabbitt

David Rabbitt, Chairman of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors. He will be talking about county issues and will leave time for questions and concerns from our members.

PLEASE NOTE: Meeting In-Person & via Zoom!  Please register.

–> Debi Zaft will email you the link for online, once you have paid.  Use this link to payCLICK HERE!

Wednesday December 7: TBD
Wednesday December 14: Telemedicine
Wednesday December 21: Dark For The Holidays
Wednesday December 28: Family Trivia

Click here for the current calendar (Subject to updates).


Bell Ringing 2022 12/3&10/22

Come out and help spread some Holiday cheer. Ring bells, create smiles & raise money for the Salvation Army to carry out their mission in our community. There are still spots open.  Click Here To Sign-Up

Keep checking back.  New socials coming soon!

Rotary Announcements

Salvation Army Bell Ringing @ Safeway – This year we will be serving at both doors of the Safeway on 4th St.  This means that over the course of two weekends we will be filling 16 2-hour shifts. If we all do a little bit, we can make a huge impact. Sign up to ring with family members and friends. Ring for a shift with a new Rotaractor.  Invite one of our Youth Exchange students to ring with you and get to know them better.  Ask a new club member to ring with you.  Invite a young professional that could be a good prospective Rotarian to join you in this act of service.

Creativity is encouraged – dress up, play an instrument, sing carols, bring your kids/grandkids (they bring in the best donations!), and have fun!

–> Follow the link to sign up –

Questions?  Contact our Bell Ringing coordinator Casey (Kara) Carter.

May 27 – 31, 2023: The Rotary International Convention will be in Melbourne, Australia. You can sign up now and book you room(s). This will be RI President Jennifer Jones’ convention so it should be epic as the first woman RI president.


Visit our district at:
Check out Rotary International at:
Come see us at: http://rotarymeansbusiness

Watch The Meeting:  Did you miss the meeting?  Here is a link to the recording of last week’s meeting:
(Click here for recording
Please note it is only available to view until: 11/27/22


Andrea Geary led the club in the Pledge of Allegiance and Four-Way Test. 

Her comments today were “The Seven Rules of Life.” Number 1, Smile; Number 2, Be kind; Number 3,  Don’t compare;  Number 4, Avoid the negativity; Number 5, Make peace with your past;  Number 6, Don’t give up; and, Number 7, Take care of your body and mind.

Rotarian of the Month for August

President Kris presented Kurt Groninga with his Rotarian of the Month pin. Even though Kurt has been traveling, he has continued to work with the Cherkasy Rotary Center on the joint Ukraine project. He was acknowledged for his outstanding leadership in acquiring funds for first aid kits for the citizens of Ukraine.

Visiting Rotarians

There were no visiting Rotarians today.


There were no guests today, but Robin Yonash, who will become a member on November 30, 2022, was introduced as a “guest/member.” Please join us for Robin’s induction on November 30th.


Ginny Cannon reported that Dan Balfe, who made an appearance on Zoom today, continues to rest following his concussion.


Pete Lescure, our experienced raffle host, asked Robin Yonash who pulled Sam Macmillan’s number today. However, he did not pull the winning marble. He received the consolation prize of $10. Sam drew the Second Chance ticket winner who was Bill Hatcher. He selected the Scratcher as his prize.

Traveling Obie

President Kris asked Susan Kowacki how Obie did on her cruise. Susan reported from Zoom that Obie did not fit in her carry-on bag, so she took a photo of Obie with the ship. She will bring the picture in when she is feeling better.


Salvation Army Bell Ringing – Casey Carter announced that sign-ups are going well, but time slots are still available. A Sign-up Genius email will be going out soon in hopes of filling the  remaining spaces.  Click Here To Sign-Up

Ukraine Update

Jeff Gospe and Kurt Groninga gave an update on Rotary’s efforts to support citizens in Cherkasy and Zaporizhzhia. Kurt is a joint member of the Rotary Club of Cherkasy Center and the Rotary Club of Santa Rosa, and in constant communication with Rotarains in Ukraine. 

Jeff reported that we have completed the First Aid Kit Project, which provided 6,000 kits to civilians and medical workers. Each kit serves 10-15 people. The cost in March was approximately $25 per kit, but inflation has increased the cost to roughly $56 per kit.  As a Ukraine Rotary District, they will continue with the First Aid Kit project. They expressed their appreciation for the kits and asked if we would join them in providing funds for warm clothing, small medical equipment, and supplies. They are asking us to investigate the possibility of creating a joint Rotary consortium to fund not only the funds for warm clothing, but also medical supplies and equipment. They used some of the last allocation of funds to purchase a small 4-wheel drive vehicle to distribute the supplies and equipment to civilians and volunteers. Jeff clarified that after the final purchase of first aid kits at the end of October, there was $20,038 left. At a recent joint meeting, an allocation of $4,000 would go toward a psychological rehabilitation mental health program for children. The program will provide clinical psychologists working with 150 kids in 10 sessions 4/20 to help the children with strategies for dealing with life in a war zone. They will also provide the technology for the children to access the program online and in the schools.

Kurt reported that those he has spoken with remain resilient and optimistic. They believe they will win the war within a year.

Click image to see larger. For full version contact Jeff or Curt

Click image to see larger. For full version contact Jeff or Curt

Jeff shared photos from the Rotary Club of Zaporizhizha, composed of a group of women in their 30s whose club has doubled in size in the last year. Zaporizhizha is located near a nuclear power plant. Their recent email describes how they have been providing humanitarian aid while under constant missile attacks for more than a month. The Rotary Club of Healdsburg, our club, and a district grant raised close to $60,000. They have used funds to create technical hubs with a computer and printer for people to contact their loved ones and conduct necessary business. They have also purchased medicines, thermal underwear for the medical workers, small gas burners, and hot water heaters for the hospitals. The photos showed the purchases as well as the annual calendar created by Ukrainian children for an art contest. It may be available for sale in the next month.

RYLA Presentation

Our guest speaker was Cassie Pitkin, Director of RYLA. She was a 2006 camper at RYLA representing Petaluma High School. As the director she is working to bolster participation for 2023 and would like to encourage representation from Santa Rosa High Schools. Cassie shared a video made during camp in the summer of 2022. 

Mary Graves introduced our member Tasia Henerson who was a RYLA participant a number of years ago. Tasia expressed the importance of RYLA to her and how it led to her joining Rotaract and Rotary.  Here is a link to Cassie’s RYLA Camp Video

Youth Committee

Mary quickly segued into soliciting volunteers for the Youth Committee following the presentation. If you are interested in being a part of the committee, please contact Mary Graves.

Rotary Youth Exchange

Craig Meltzner gave a brief update on the Rotary Youth Exchange program. Our outbound student to Germany is Marcos Stevens. He is focusing on language acquisition and making friends at school. He reports that classes are difficult. 

Craig emphasized that a big part of Youth Exchange is making international friends and connections with the host family and students both in and out of school.

The Meltzners are the host family for our inbound student, Chiara Puddu from Italy. She will join the Stevens, her second host family, right after Thanksgiving. On her latest report card Chiara received straight A’s. Good job!

Thank you to the Gospes for hosting William Folkesson, our Swedish inbound student, and for taking Chiara and William to their cabin in Calaveras County.

William is having a bit of a post-football season letdown, but doing well. 

When candidates for a second host family for William fell through, he asked his best friend if his family would host him. Hats off to Mary Graves and William, who made it all work out.

Outreach for a youth exchange student was extensive. However, a candidate was not selected during the interviews. The Rotary Club of Sebastopol recommended Alexander Barrett for us to consider. Following her interview, the committee selected Alexander as our 2022-2023 outbound student. She was born in Kazakhstan and moved around during high school. She is enthusiastic about youth exchange and understands the expectations of the program.

International Service Committee – Formally known as World Community Service 

President-elect Ann Gospe announced that the next meeting would be January 17, 2023.

At the meeting this week, the committee voted to fund the following projects: Amigos de Guatemala. The committee agreed to continue supporting our current middle school and high school students. Project Amigo. We will continue to support the educational pursuits of a number of children through our funding. The Global Grant with the Rotary Sunrise Club of Sebastopol. Telemedicine. Again, this is a project we have supported for sometime. 

Ann stated that the committee would like input from Club members for other International Service Projects. A project recommendation form will be put on the website, and/or emailed to members to make suggestions or recommendations for future projects. The committee still has about 60% of the budget remaining to be allocated.

Next meeting

President Kris announced that Jaime Rojos, of Rojos Winery, has donated a bottle of wine to be raffled off at our next club meeting. Jaime is considering joining the Rotary Club of Santa Rosa following his visits as Odalis Medianero’s guest.

Program Slides

Included above inline

Club Job Openings:

Still need a few bulletin writers. Need a person on the board for Vocational Service Recognition

Additional Pictures:

(Click on image to view additional meeting pictures)


Governor, District 5130

Jennifer Strong


Debi Zaft P.O. Box 505 Santa Rosa, CA 95402

Board of Directors

Kris Anderson – President
Ann Gospe – President Elect
Casey D’Angelo – President Elect Nominee
Ray Giampaoli – Past President
Debi Zaft – Secretary
Karen Ball – Treasurer
Robert Pierce – Sergeant At Arms
Julia Parranto – Club Service- Membership
Andrea Geary – Club Service – Club Meetings
Matthew Henry – Club Service – Fund Raising
Charlie Howard-Gibbon – Club Services – Member Activities
Pete Lescure – Club Service – Records and Outreach
Casey Carter – Member Involvement
Mary Graves Community – Service – Youth
Tim Fawcett – Vocational Service
Scott Bartley – International Service
Paul Hamilton – Foundation Representative

DIGITAL EDITION No. 480 November 16, 2022  EDITOR: Diane Moresi PHOTOGRAPHER: Jeff Gospe PUBLISHER: Richard Lazovick