NOTE: TO SHOW THE MOST RECENT STORIES ON TOP OF THIS PAGE, STORIES ARE LISTED HERE IN REVERSE CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER (MOST RECENT ON TOP, EARLIER DATES BELOW).
Woodland Girls Fastpitch
Softball Fields Update
Shawn Seyk reports the ground has been leveled and lighting poles are being installed for the new Woodland Girls Fastpitch Softball Fields (WGSF) at the Woodland Sports Park. The WGFS project received $45,600 from our Club earlier this year; proceeds from our 2022 Dinner Auction.
November 27th Meeting
With President Karl Diekman away on unexpected family business, President-elect Bob Nakken banged the bell to get our meeting started today. Back by popular demand, Jim McGibbon, Dan Stroski & Steve Venables combined again to lead us in Rotary Grace.
We had a full house today. Bob Nakken introduced his daughter Alyssa Nakken and his 'beautiful' wife Gaye (sorry, didn't get a picture of Gaye). Woodland Sunrise Rotarian Byron McConnell visited us today. Mark Ullrich introduced his wife Audrie. Rickaye Harris Jorz, sister of our guest speaker Dave Jorz, introduced Dave's wife Dee Jorz, as well as friends Alan & Diane Drever, and Scott Hefner.
Immediate Past President Shawn Seyk reported the Club's Nominating Committee was placing in nomination the names of the following members for Club Officer and Director positions starting July 1, 2024:
(One-year terms; the President-elect will also serve as the Club President July 2025-26)
President-elect - ANIEK PFLAGER
Secretary - GARY BUNCH
Treasurer - TOM SCHWARZGRUBER
(Two-year terms beginning July 1, 2024)
Board of Directors - DERREK KAFF, GENA BRAVO, and MIKE RUSSELL
The nominations period will remain open until the Club's next meeting, Tuesday, December 5, when the election of Club Officers and Directors will take place. Last year Bob Nakken was elected as President-elect for the current year and will serve as Club President beginning July 1, 2024.
Yvette Roy celebrated her birthday today, November 27, (Woodland, 1960), and the Club sang 'Happy Birthday' to her. Kevin Haarberg celebrated his 69th birthday on Nov 24 (Yankton SD, delivered by Tom Brokaw's father). Tabb Randolph celebrated a birthday on Nov 17 (Woodland).
Dan Stroski took the Recognition helm today, asking several questions about Thanksgiving. Among the happy Rotarians, Tim Pettit got some sight restored after he had cataract surgery on his right eye recently. He gets the same surgery on the left eye later this week. Clyde Brooker was happy for the staff of Woodland Healthcare who gave his wife Krim a successful hip replacement surgery earlier this month. Jayne Williams was thankful her husband Jeff is recovering well after recently undergoing successful emergency heart surgery to avoid a likely heart attack.
Woodland High School aluminus and current Folsom resident, Dave Jorz, was our guest speaker today. Dave gave us a story of his crossing of the United States by bicycle earlier this year which at age 76 years likely makes him the oldest male to do so. Read more about Dave's journey in this Daily Democrat article.
WHS Interact Food Drive
Jayne Williams reports Woodland High School Interact (sponsored by our Club) conducted a food drive recently collecting about 500 items which will be donated to the Woodland Food Closet this week.
November 14th Meeting
President Karl Diekman led us in our last meeting before Thanksgiving (We will be DARK on Nov 21), and announced the Woodland Rotary Holiday Open House, sponsored by the three Clubs in Woodland, will be held from 4:30pm-6:30pm on Friday, December 8, 2024 at the Gibson House Barn Gallery. Members and spouses are encouraged to attend. Cost is $45 per person. Tickets may be purchased
Woodland Sunrise Rotarians Byron MacConnell and Don Sharp visited us today. Don Sharp reported Sunrise Rotary is currently conducting an auction via email to acquire a certificate good for one round of golf for four players at Yocha DeHe Golf Club, plus the purchaser gets a room for one night at the Yocha Dehe Casino Resort. Highest bid received by Friday, November 17th wins. Contact Don Sharp at email@example.com for more information or place a bid.
Dan Stroski is looking for volunteer families willing to consider hosting inbound Rotary Youth Exchange students for up to three months sometime during the 2024-25 academic year. He also is looking for outbound students, ages 15.5-18.5 years, to travel to and attend high school in another country. Contact Dan Stroski if interested or for more information. Shawn Seyk reminded past Club presidents the annual Nominations Committee meeting will be held 5:30pm Wednesday, November 15th at Tabb Randolph's office to determine officer nominations for the year starting July 1, 2024. It is expected nominations will be reported to the Club on the November 28th Club meeting. Yvette Roy reported the Club's meeting December 5th will be an 'orientation' session for all members, with many of us participating.
Gary Bunch took the lead on today's Recognition by asking everyone attending who had served in the U.S. military to stand and be thanked for their service. Those who stood were Frits van der Hoek, Steve Venables, Mark Ullrich, Gary Wegener, Don Huff Jr., and President Karl Diekman. Gary also asked each of them to describe their assignment in the service. Don Huff Jr., our only veteran who served in WWII, talked about joining the service during the war at age 17, and being on a carrier in 1945 waiting to invade Japan just prior to the atomic bomb being dropped.
.Derrek Kaff was happy his son just accepted a new full-time IT job in Boulder CO to go completely off the family payroll. Mark Ullrich celebrated his 74th birthday on Nov 10 (Woodland) and was really happy the SF 49ers bounced back with a win Sunday. Don Huff III was happy to spend two weeks in Kona on the Big Island with his father, had some recent success in pigeon shooting, and will soon be headed to New Mexico for deer hunting. Gary Wegener was happy his daughter Kristen and his son-in-law, who had eloped in January, had a wedding reception recently at a 'speakeasy' in San Francisco's North Beach neighborhood.
Captain Ivan Tien, Yolo County Commander for the California Highway Patrol, was our guest speaker today. A twenty two year CHP veteran, Captain Tien gave us a look at the staffing, operations, safety focus of the CHP service in this area, how they handle freeway construction zones, and addressed several questions from us today. Many thanks to Derrek Kaff in arranging for and introducing our speaker today.
WHS Interact Club at Conference
Gary Wegener reports five of our Club's Woodland High School Interactors attended the District 5160 Interact Kick-Off event held last Sunday in Winters along with about 80 Interactors from throughout northern California in attendance. The event highlighted resources available within the district and offered opportunities to network with other Interact clubs on a wide variety of issues. Kudos to Interact Club President Sofia Bruns, Vice President Yoselin Mendoza, and their leadership team for jumping at this opportunity despite getting short notice.
November 7th Meeting
President Karl Diekman opened today's meeting to a spirited crowd!
Foundation Chair Tom Schwarzgruber presented Peter Holmes with his 3rd Paul Harris pin in recognition of his significant financial contributions to the Rotary Foundation. Gary Wegener reported members of our Club sponsored Woodland High School Interact Club attended the Interact District 5160 Conference in Winters this past weekend.
For the first time, Derrek Kaff took the helm on Recognition today (As Chuck Maltese put it, the first time anyone has had a gun with them in that position!) asking various questions about films, music, and awards in the popular culture. Nick Roncoroni fessed up to celebrating his 44th birthday on Oct 26 (Sacramento). Lori Ross was happy the LV Raiders fired their head coach last week and finally won a game! Kevin Haarberg was happy he and wife Lorie enjoyed a great trip to Tuscany (Italy) last month.
Our guest speaker today was Senator Bill Dodd who represents Woodland and surrounding communities in the CA State Senate (Senate District 3). Senator Dodd, who hails from Napa, reported on the many issues and related legislation going on in the California legislature today. He also responded to several questions from members. Senator Dodd was joined by his District Representative Lysette Marshman who works out of his Vacaville office. More about Senator Dodd can be found on his website: https://sd03.senate.ca.gov/
Rotary Work Shirts
Want a 'Rotarian at Work' tee shirt? Mens and womens tee shirts and polo shirts are available for purchase. If interested, select and print the order form below. Complete the form with your desired purchase and return it to Yvette Roy either at a Club meeting or by email to Yvette at firstname.lastname@example.org no later than Friday, November 17, 2023.
Yvette says the size charts are a bit small, so you might want to look at them on-line. They can be viewed on the Russell Hampton website: https://www.bestclubsupplies.com
Click on the 'Clothing/Apparel' tab on the front page. Look for:
Ladies T-Shirt Item#: RFTEE4MC
Ladies Polo Shirt Item#: RFP97c
Mens T-Shirt Item#: RTEE4MC
Mens Polo Shirt Item#: RP97c
(Note: Search bar does not find the polo shirts)
Payment will be expect when items are delivered.
Questions? Call Yvette directly at 530-908-7425.
Switchback Ridge Wine Tasting
Chuck & Joyce Maltese, Les & Gail Engelmann and Chuck & Linda Santoni enjoyed a wine tasting at Switchback Ridge Winery on Nov 2 which is part of the package they purchased at the Club's 2023 Dinner Auction. Thanks to Switchback Ridge Winery and host Kelly Peterson for the donation!
October 31st Meeting
President Karl Diekman welcomed a good sized audience to the Halloween meeting of the Club. Karl said he wore special socks for the occasion, but since we never saw them we'll just have to take his word for that. Christian Sherrill was ready for Halloween, and was also happy his company, Premier Chiropractic, is currently celebrating its 20th year in business.
We had several visiting Rotarians today including Waylon Eng from the Rotary Club of Orinda (a guest of Don Sharp); Don Sharp and Byron MacConnell (Woodland Sunrise) and Lisa Olson a new Rotarian from Wheeling (West Virginia), near where President Karl once lived, who is out here 'pet sitting' for her daughter. Don Sharp shared the sad news that Gary Holman, the long-time Sunrise Rotarian and past President, passed away last weekend.
Secretary Aniek Pflager led the Club through an election to approve new Club Bylaws language dealing with the nomination and election of Club Officers, and a change in a Club Committee. The proposed language had been emailed to the membership for review and consideration on Oct 18th. Club members unanimously approved the new Bylaws language by voice vote. The newly approved language can be viewed here.
Chuck Maltese was in charge of today's Recognition and asked for a variety of responses including notable things that happened on your honeymoon. Marie Galbo said her husband's friends played some pranks on them during their wedding. Lori Ross outlined some vows she and husband Art recently renewed to each other on their anniversary. Dick Hoppin was happy about no longer having to wear a sling to support his shoulder following recent surgery. Lisa Martinez Dunham was busy being our Splinter writer today.
Rogellio Villigrana, Director of the Early Academic Outreach Program (EAOP), UC Davis, was our guest speaker today, giving us an extensive look at this State funded effort to serve area K-12 students who are either the first of their family to go to college or who are considered socioeconomically disadvantaged. EAOP provides these students with information about college entrance requirements, how to apply, what happens when you arrive, and how to pay for a college education. Thanks to Wendy Casas for arranging for and introducing 'her brother' from law school today. Also attending today was Monica Peña-Villegas, EAOP Regional Assistant Director for the Woodland area who can be reached for more information at 530 752-9227 or at email@example.com. More about EAOP can be viewed on its website: https://eaop.ucdavis.edu/
Support Our Partners!
Visit the websites of our Club's Partner organizations (addresses below) to learn about the amazing work they do for our community:
WOODLAND LITTLE LEAGUE - https://www.woodlandlittleleague.com/
ALL LEADERS MUST SERVE - https://www.allleadersmustserve.org/
THE BIKE CAMPAIGN - https://www.thebikecampaign.org/
MOSAIC - WOODLAND CHILDREN'S MUSEUM
FRIENDS OF ADULT DAY HEALTH CARE - https://www.friendsofadhc.org/
YOLO CRISIS NURSERY - https://yolocrisisnursery.org/
October 24th Meeting
President Karl Diekman welcomed a good sized group to our meeting today and reminded us today is World Polio Day. Our Polio Plus Warrior Mark Ullrich talked about Rotary's efforts to eradicate polio worldwide and asked Club members who are also members of the Polio Plus Society to join him for a group photo. Society membership is open to Rotarians pledging to contribute a minimum of $100 a year to Rotary's End Polio campaign until the eradication goal is achieved.
Mark Ullrich and wife Audrie celebrated their 17th wedding anniversary (Woodland) on Oct 21. Don Huff III celebrated his 71st birthday (Woodland) yesterday, and also had good results on the opening day of duck season over the weekend. Mike Chandler and wife Randi will celebrate their 27th wedding anniversary (Woodland) on Oct 26.
Shawn Seyk was proud of his girls soccer team again as they prevailed, 4-2, over the previously unbeaten and first place Premier League team from Granite Bay last Sunday. Jim Nolan was in charge of Recognition today asking different probing questions. Asked by Jim Nolan about books he had read recently, Derrek Kaff recommended the 'Book of Joy' by the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu. Gone for awhile, Peter Holmes had attended (and paid for) his daughter's wedding, and then vacationed with wife Christine in San Diego.
Jennifer Shaffer (left), Executive Officer, and Jessica Blonien, Chief Cousel, Board of Parole Hearings, with the CA Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, were our guest speakers who provided us an extensive program on 'California's Parole Hearing Process'. Thanks to Program Coordinator Wendy Casas for arranging and introducing this interesting program! More information about CA Parole Hearings can be found at the CA DCR website for Parole Hearings: https://www.cdcr.ca.gov/bph/
October 17th Meeting
President Karl Diekman presented Preston Schaub with a special recognition pin, given by District Governor Claire Roberts during her visit last week, as our 'Rookie of the Year' for his significant contributions to the Club as a new member.
Dan Stroski reported he is working with District 5160 to reestablish our Club's participation with Rotary Youth Exchange. This involves locally housing one or more foreign exchange students for the school year with three different families for about 3 months each. Volunteers are needed. Dan believes we would likely get a student from Eastern Europe. Visiting Sunrise Rotarian Don Sharp thanked the Club for supporting the Sunrise Salmon BBQ last weekend. Gary Wegener just returned from a European river cruise he took from Prague to Bulgaria. Gary also mentioned the City of Woodland has a contract in place to repair the Freeman Park gazebo which sustained damage in last winter's storms; and 2023 Beer Booth tips totaled about $1500 and will be donated to the Yolo Food Bank. Jeff Burger thanked those members who helped him tend bar at the Sunrise Salmon BBQ.
President-elect Bob Nakken was given an early warning on his Oct 21st wedding anniversary with wife Gaye (1978; Carmel). Responding to Recognition leader Kevin Haarberg's question about where did you spend your honeymoon, Yvette Roy said she has been on a honeymoon the last 21 years, but the first one was spent at her mother-in-law's place. Jim McGibbon was proud his alma matter, McGill Medical School, was named the top medical school in Canada for the 19th consecutive year. Don Huff Jr. said he was the last of his high school class.
Eric Williams, Captain, Fraud Insurance Division, CA Department of Insurance, was our guest speaker today giving us a presentation of the work of the Fraud Division. Thanks to Dan Stroski for arranging and introducing his best friend to speak with us.
WHS Interact in the Community
Jayne Williams reports Woodland High School's Interact Club, sponsored by Woodland Rotary, gave out candy to children attending Movie Night on Main on Oct 13 (top) and had a great night assisting at Woodland Sunrise's Salmon BBQ on Oct 14.
Meet Our New Member -
Chuck Bruns, sponsored by Yvette Roy, was installed as a new member of the Club on September 19, 2023 by President Karl Diekman. At our request, Chuck provided us with the following bio. If you haven't already done so, please take a moment to introduce yourself to Chuck when you meet and welcome him to the Club.
I was born in the suburbs of Arcadia, California in the early 1960s and then, before turning ten in the very early 1970s, I moved with my family - Mom, Dad, a sister, and brother - to Meadow Vista, California. I attended and graduated Colfax High and then earned an English degree from UC Davis in the mid-1980s. I traveled to Europe and settled in New Orleans where I was a waiter for three years at famous Brennan’s Restaurant in the French Quarter. I returned to California to be able to teach and coach. I now reside in Wild Wings of Woodland with my family of five. Although my parents are now deceased, I make it a routine to visit my brother who covers the news working at the Washington Post and my sister who is a rancher in Wyoming.
I am a father and husband - parenting my oldest daughter (Olivia) who is a freshman at Cal Poly SLO as a plant science major; middle daughter (Sofia), a junior at WHS and current president of Interact at WHS; and my 7th grader, Isabella who loves her chickens and raising other animals as a part of the Esparto 4H. My wife, Dr. Jennifer Bruns holds a vice presidential role with the PetSmart corporation and travels all over the country to support and help facilitate the operations of veterinary practices and their respective staff.
I continue to teach part time (tutoring) and coach cross country, basketball and track and field and was once an active youth minister right here in Woodland with Holy Rosary Catholic Church. I have devoted my career to the youth in Woodland, Clarksburg, and Davis. The cross-country team that I currently coach is ranked 5th in the state and the team plans to make the state championships this year. I am active with running and track clubs and hope to someday once again, run and finish a complete marathon of 26.2 miles.
I am working on writing my biopic book that profiles many legends of Woodland - especially its sporting community - and I will have more time to complete interviews and actively write in my semi-retirement. From Jack Yerman and Jill Camarena, Felix Castillo, the 2018 WHS Championship girls soccer team to MLB coach Alyssa Nakken and boxing Olympian Vicente Escobedo, these are just some stories I’m working on. And I enjoy gardening, traveling, reading, viewing the cinema as well as golfing, skiing, and hiking.
Rotary Calgary Nicaragua Project -
Oct 2023 Update
In 2020 our Club was involved in a Rotary driven effort establishing a UNICAM or “University in the Country” in the Nicaraguan municipality of Tuma-La Dalia (located approximately 100 miles northeast of Nicaragua’s capital of Managua) to train local high school graduates to become qualified dentists, optometrists, and family doctors and provide care for a medically underserved population of approximately 300,000 people. Responding to a request for funding from the International Host Rotary Club of Calgary (Canada) and the local Host Rotary Club of Jinotega (Nicaragua), the Rotary Club of Woodland contributed and solicited additional financial support from other area Rotary clubs, as well as several individual donors. We collected a total of $5000 USD which was forwarded to the Rotary Club of Calgary.
The COVID-19 pandemic and policy decisions by the Nicaraguan government delayed the project, and other difficulties resulted in narrowing the scope of the project to just dental students who went into a 5-year program to graduate. University of Managua faculty members provided the training for these students, all of whom are from the local region and, it is hoped, are likely to remain after graduation. Eventually, with funding from two Rotary Districts and a Global Grant, more than $70,000 US were raised for the project.
Due to continued instability in the relationship between the project implementer UNICAM University and the Nicaragua government the original project will not be fully realized and is stopped with completion of the dental education portion of the project. In accordance with The Rotary Foundation (TRF) policy, the remainder of the project has been cancelled and unused funds have been returned to TRF. Although, the project fell short of its larger goal, the parties involved can be proud of the work completed, it will have a lasting positive impact.
We have received word this week from the International Host Club Project Leader that 67 students continue their dental training with faculty members from the University of Managua and went on to report:
“Many of these dentists will hopefully remain in Nicaragua to provide desperately needed services in the poorest parts of the country. The students in the other professions continue to be trained. The faculty modified some of the plans and is managing without the financial support in various ways. Most importantly, the commitments to the students are being met and most will graduate. We don’t know how many will remain in Nicaragua because of the current political situation. Hopefully, many will but I am certain some will or already have left.
After the difficulties met throughout the project, I believe I would do it all over again if the outcomes were similar. I want to thank everyone again for their incredible patience and support throughout.” – Israel ‘Sonny’ Belenkie
Some of the dental training equipment acquired with this grant.
Oct 10th Meeting -
District Governor's Visit
President Karl Diekman welcomed District 5160 Governor Claire Roberts to our meeting today. The Club Board met with DG Claire prior to the start of the regular meeting. District 5160 Treasurer Lynn Jepsen and Assitant District Governor Ramon Urbano (both with Woodland Sunrise) also joined us. We had a good crowd today.
Brian Dwyer correctly identified the author of today's Inspirational Quote and President Karl presented him with a Rotary pin. Jim Nolan reported the Club has received word from Rotary International our application to host a Rotary One World Program delegation has been approved. Our Club will host a delegation of five young professionals and a facilitator from Ukraine on the Rule of Law: Processing War Crimes during April 5-13, 2024. More information about the One World Program can be viewed here.
Tim Pettit fessed up to celebrating his 79th birthday on Oct 6 (Roseville). Derrek Kaff will celebrate a birthday on Oct 15 (Granada Hills), and Tom Schwarzgruber will celebrate his 73rd birthday tomorrow, Oct 11 (Woodland).
District Governor Claire Roberts presented Jim McGibbon with his Paul Harris Fellowship pin +4 today in recognition of Jim's significant financial contributions to the Rotary Foundation.
DG Claire Roberts recognized Yvette Roy and Aniek Pflager for their inspiration and support of the Club.
District Governor Claire Roberts gave an extensive review of activities, initiatives and support provided to Rotary Clubs through both Rotary International as well as District 5160.
October 3rd Meeting
President Karl Diekman reminded us about the District Governor's visit next week. Among his announcements President Karl shared the Club has received a 'Thank You' letter from the Friends of Yolo Adult Day Health Care for the contribution the Club provided them in July. Rotary Grace leaders Dan Stroski and Steve Venables reunited this week to lead us.
Gary Bunch took charge of today's Recognition. Gary asked Dick Hoppin to report on his recent shoulder surgery and made Tim Pettit pay his fine! Dick said he had surgery done on his right shoulder last January, and three weeks ago he had the left shoulder worked on. Dick was thankful both surgeries were successful! Nick Roncoroni was happy about his son Adam's 10th birthday today. Don Huff III has a cautiously optimistic outlook for the upcoming duck hunting season...as long as the weather cooperates! Since the SF Giants ended the season with a losing record, Bob Nakken conceded his wager with Gary Bunch and 'rang the bell' for the Rotary Foundation. Bob doesn't know yet what the change in the Giant's manager position will mean for his daughter, Assistant Coach Alyssa. Mark Ullrich was happy the SF 49ers continued their winning streak this past weekend.
Chuck Maltese offers marital advice: Recently reminded every husband should treat his spouse just as he did when they went on their first date, Chuck took his wife out to dinner, and afterwards drove her back to her mother's place.
Jen Boschee-Danzer, Executive Director, NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) Yolo County, was our guest speaker today providing us with a presentation on 'Community Conversations on Mental Health'. More about NAMI Yolo County can be found on their website: https://namiyolo.org/. Thank you to David Pinto, who has family experience with NAMI Yolo County and now serves on their Board of Directors, for arranging and introducing this interesting program!
September 26th Meeting
President Karl Diekman returned from his Rotary trip to Africa to lead a well attended meeting today. During the trip President Karl visited our Kenya WASH project and talked with local Rotary leaders there about the current delay in Phase Two of the project. Karl reported the issues causing the delay are internal to the local Rotary club in Karen, and Karl expects their Club will eventually resolve those issues so the project can proceed as originally planned.
Female members of the Club presented Ann Taylor with a cake in celebration of her 90th birthday coming up on October 1st. The Club followed with a chorus of 'Happy Birthday' to Ann.
Visiting Woodland Sunrise Rotarians Don Sharp, Byron MacConnell and John Martin joined us today. Dan Stroski joined by Zoom from his RV traveling somewhere. Lori Ross introduced her guest, Mandy Tanberg, Real Estate Agent, Bellavie Real Estate. Steve Venables introduced his guest, Will Anderson, West Point graduate; engineer with Luhdorff & Scalmanini; and current Comannder of the Yolo Post 77 of the American Legion.
Blair Voelz 'rang the bell' for completing his grape harvest this year. With the pot at $390 and 19 cards remaining, John Martin (with 'assistance' from Chuck Maltese) managed to find a free lunch. Eric Sharp was happy for a whole lot of things! In charge of today's Recognition, Clyde Brooker asked a bunch of 'punny' questions; like Why did the golfer change his socks? Answer: 'Because he had a hole in one'. What was he thinking??? Anyway, Clyde will also celebrate a birthday on Sep 29 (Yucaipa CA).
Wendy Casas introduced Danny O'Neel as our guest speaker today. Danny is the Board Chairman and a peer mentor for Warfighter Overwatch, an award winning non-profit organization providing supportive services to veterans and first responder families. Danny gave us a program on his experiences as a veteran in the Iraq War and how he dealt with resulting PTSD, suicidal thoughts and other major challenges, as well as the programs of the organization. More about Danny and Warfighter Overwatch can be found on its website: www.warfighteroverwatch.org
Meet Our Returning Member -
David Molinaro (left), sponsored by his good friend Don Huff III, was reinstalled as a member of the Club earlier this summer after an extended time away from the Club. While he already knows many in the Club, newer members may not know David. At our request, David provided us with the following bio. If you haven't already done so, please take a moment to introduce yourself to David when you meet and welcome him back to the Club.
I was born in East Los Angeles, as my dad was a Highway Patrolman and we moved around a bit. I mostly grew up outside of Santa Rosa CA near Fulton. After high school I tried out several universities before settling at Chico State. Upon graduating I brokered potatoes and onions out of Oregon and Washington for a few years. Next, I managed the valley region for a large wholesale produce company based out of San Jose. Near the end of 1989 it was clear the company I was working for was failing. I had a wife in law school, two kids and would soon need a job. Thinking I was a smart guy, I opened the Sac Bee and looked in the want ads under businesses for sale and listed there was a dairy, ice cream and ice manufacturing company in Woodland. I was able to come up with enough cash for a down payment, and 33 years later, I'm still running Yolo Ice & Creamery. I was a member of this (Woodland) Rotary Club for many years before taking a lengthy leave. I made a lot of friends through the Club and look forward to making more. I have three children, and four grandchildren. When I'm not working I like to travel, hunt, fish, do woodworking & moonshining, and drink red wine while enjoying my family and friends.
September 19th Meeting
With President Karl Diekman still traveling President-elect Bob Nakken once again took the helm today in front of a modest sized group on a pleasant late summer day. President-elect Bob inducted Chuck Bruns, who was sponsored and introduced by Membership Chair Yvette Roy, as the newest member of our Club.
We were joined by three members of the Woodland Sunrise Club today: Don Sharp, Byron MacConnell, and Sue Westwood. Sue reminded us dinner and grand prize raffle tickets are available for Woodland Sunrise's Annual Salmon BBQ scheduled for October 14, 2033 at Waite Hall in the Yolo Fairgrounds.
Carl Rodegerdts will be celebrating his 87th birthday (Woodland) on Sep 22. Tom Schwarzgruber thanked those who attended and helped out at our special evening meeting last Tuesday in their backyard. With the pot at $371 and 20 cards remaining, Lisa Dunham managed to find a free lunch! Chuck Moore fessed up to celebrating his 66th birthday (Woodland) on Sep 6.
Rotary Beer Booth Chair Gary Wegener reported the Club will receive $3100 from our work at the County Fair this year. President-elect Bob fined Gary Bunch for his many complaints about how the SF Giants are playing this year. Bob proposed a friendly wager between them: if the Giants finish this season with more wins than losses, Gary will donate $100 to the Rotary Foundation. If the Giants finish the season with more losses than wins, Bob will donate $100 to the Rotary Foundation. Gary accepted the challenge! Rob Beggs was happy his granddaughter competed well in a recent gymnastics tournament and will move on to State-wide competition.
Don Huff III was in charge of today's Recognition, asking about a memory from the late Gary Wirth, a story how you enjoyed this summer, or a good memory from your childhood. Don's father, Don Huff Jr., was happy to be back in town after spending the summer at his family's place in Lake Tahoe.
West Sacramento Estate Planning and Probate Attorney Lauren Jones was our guest speaker today giving us a presentation on Estate Planning Misconceptions. Thank you to Wendy Casas for arranging and introducing this excellent program. The complete visual slide presentation Lauren presented can be found here. More about Lauren's firm can be seen at her website: https://laurencjoneslaw.com
Special Evening Meeting
at the Schwarzgruber's
The Club enjoyed a special evening session on Sep 12, as 54 members, spouses and other guests gathered in the beautiful backyard of hosts Tom & Gail Schwarzgruber for a dinner of BBQ dinner of hamburgers, salads and ice cream and received an extensive demonstration by Woodland Police Department's K-9 Officers Dave Shepherd and Ryan Royal, along with their K-9 partners Ricky and Lochi. President-elect Bob Nakken presided as President Karl Diekman is traveling for Rotary. In addition to the Schwaragrubers, thanks also go to members of the Woodland High School Interact Club who helped out, as well as Aniek Pflager, Carl Rodegerdts, Tabb Randolph and Don Huff III for their assistance.
September 5th Meeting
With President Karl Diekman traveling (see post below), President-elect Bob Nakken took the helm at today's meeting. Prospective new member Chuck Bruns was introduced by Yvette Roy as her guest.
Club Grants and Service Committee Chair Blair Voelz reported the Kenya WASH Phase Two project (see project explanation below on this page) is on hold today because of a decision by Kenya Rotary authorities to 'suspend' the project for unknown reasons. Blair indicated Club President Karl Diekman is in Africa now and plans to be in Kenya soon in an effort to learn more about the situation and hopes to get this important, yet long-delayed project going again.
Tim Pettit fessed up to celebrating his 20th wedding anniversary with wife Nadine on Aug 31st (Murphy's CA). Kris Kristensen got an early warning on his Sep 19th wedding anniversary with wife Kathy (2015 in Live Oak CA). Marie Galbo plans to celebrate her 78th birthday on Sep 11th (Trenton NJ). Dick Hoppin 'rang the bell' in thanks for being reminded last week about his 59th wedding anniversary with wife Muffy coming up tomorrow. Sep 6.
Eric Sharp 'rang the bell' for a recent trip to Hawaii where he watched is granddaughter play volleyball, but he also got some successful deer hunting accomplished in the rugged mountains on the Island of Molokai. Christian Sherrill was happy a family member come down to Woodland's truck show over the weekend and Christian got to ride up and down Main Street in the big truck parade. Mark Ullrich was in charge of today's Recognition and asked questions about the history of the Labor Day holiday. Mark was also happy about a recent family vacation to visit Disneyland and Universal Studios, though he discovered he no longer enjoys the rides that much.
Dooba Eibensteiner, Lead Pastor, Living Hope Church, was our guest speaker today presenting us with a program about his counseling work with Crossroads Christian Counseling. Thanks to Mark Ullrich for introducing our speaker today. More about Crossroads Christian Counseling can be found at its website: www.crossroadswoodland.com
President Karl Travels for Rotary
As we know, in addition to being our Club President, Karl Diekman also serves Rotary as a Technical Advisor to the Health Education and Wellness Rotary Advisory Group (HEWRAG). He is in Egypt today (Sep 4) where he is seen in this photo speaking to the Rotary Club of El Tahrir in Cairo as a HEWRAG representative at the launch of the End Cervical Cancer for Egypt Project which is Rotary's latest Program of Scale. In this photo the lady looking at Karl is the Project leader, Dr. Amal El-Sisi. The man in the background on the left is the District Governor and the man on the right is the club president. Karl says he has plans to make two more presentations in Egypt. One to the Rotarians from the District there to encourage them to take up advocacy roles. The second will be to women's groups in low-income areas to encourage them to take advantage of the these services.
August 29th Meeting
President Karl Diekman took the helm of our last meeting prior to Labor Day today. Dan Stroski and Steve Venables led us once again in the Rotary Grace.
Visiting Rotarians Don Sharp & Byron MacConnell (Woodland Sunrise) joined us today. Frits van der Hoek and wife Kari celebrated their 18th wedding anniversary on Aug 27. Dick and Muffy Hoppin will celebrate their 59th wedding anniversary (Palo Alto) on Sep 5. With the pot at $326 and 22 cards remaining, Mike Chandler enlisted Gena Bravo and Chuck Maltese to help him select a card. Result: free lunch!!
Jayne Williams took charge of Recognition today explaining last week her organization, All Leaders Must Serve, using a $5,000 contribution from the Club, brought recent Pioneer High School graduates together with representatives of local employers to discuss fears and concerns young people experience entering the adult world. Much of the discussion centered on building and maintaining trust in the work place. Jayne asked members today 'How do you want to be remembered?', and 'Name someone you can trust'. Yvette Roy (Lead by example. Say what you do, and do what you say.) and Derrek Kaff (Would like to be known for leaving a place better than he found it.) were among those who responded. Don Huff III just returned from a Celebration of Life for his sister Susan Huff Morning (Jan 29, 1951-July 23, 2023) held on Aug 27 in Mammoth Lakes CA where she and her family have lived for over 25 years.
Mini Garcia, Code Compliance Officer for the City of Woodland's Community Development Department, (shown above with her colleague Isabel Pantoja) was our guest speaker today, giving us a look at the duties of and issues facing code compliance in the City. The complete visual slide presentation Mini presented can be found here. More information about City of Woodland Code Compliance can be found on their website. Thank you to Wendy Casas who arranged for and introduced this interesting program.
August 22nd Meeting
Following a week off for the County Fair, President Karl Diekman presided over a good size crowd today. Past District Governor and District 5160 Foundation Chair Mark Roberts visited us today to present the Club with a $15,000 District Grant check for the Camerena Little League Field improvements project, complimenting other support by our Club. Accepting the check was Club Grants and Service Committee Chair Blair Voelz, and Woodland Little League President and Club Board member Brian Dwyer.
Also visiting us today was Woodland Sunrise Rotarian Brad Miller. Yvette Roy introduced her guest Chuck Bruns. Don Huff III managed to find a free lunch today.
Lori Ross was happy she and husband Art became 'empty nesters' as their son moved out of the house. Dena Lawrence, who was thanked for her work in creating the Club information poster displayed at the County Fair last week, gave us an update on her son Micah who turned one year old this week. With his grape harvest anticipated to start this week, Blair Voelz was very happy the scattered rains that damped our area yesterday missed his fields. Barbara Sonin was happy her son retrieved his dog and remaining belongings which he had left with her last year.
Kris Kristensen led Recognition today, asking questions about the top crops produced in Yolo County. Kris also 'rang the bell' in memory of Gary Sandy, Yolo County Supervisor, and former Mayor and City Council member with whom Kris worked in the 1980-90s. Gary Sandy passed away last week. Jim Nolan reported the Club has submitted an application to Rotary International to host a delegation of 5 young professionals and a facilitator in the Rotary One World Program, much like Group Study Exchange. More about the One World Program can be viewed here. Jim expects a decision on our application sometime in September. Gary Wegener reported the Rotary Beer Booth was a success this year, despite a day's delay in getting the beer from the distributor. Gary thanked Brian Dwyer, Yvette Roy, Jim Nolan, Frits van der Hoek, and Mike Russell for their participation. Gary expects to have a financial report from the Beer Booth next week.
Part of our Member Programs, Preston Schaub was our speaker today, giving us a presentation on his family, upbringing in Florida, education, professional development, and marriage to wife Leslie. Preston is a Deputy District Attorney in the Yolo County District Attorney's Office. He and Leslie make their home in West Sacramento.
Rotary at the Fair!!
BEER BOOTH SCHEDULE
|| BEER TRAILER MGR
|| TABB RANDOLPH
|| BEER POURER/SERVER
|| ERIC ZANE
|| BEER POURER/SERVER
|| CLYDE BROOKER
|| BEER TRAILER MGR
|| BRIAN DWYER
|| BEER POURER/SERVER
|| YVETTE ROY
|| LEAD WINE BAR
|| DAVID PINTO
|| BEER POURER/SERVER
|| JIM NOLAN
|| BEER POURER/SERVER
|| FRITS VAN DER HOEK
|| BEER TRAILER MGR
|| MIKE RUSSELL
BEER BOOTH UPDATE FROM GARY WEGENER:
Distributor has delayed beer delivery until Thursday. Due to projected high temperatures, decision made to delay opening one day. Fair will start 4pm Thursday & Friday; Noon on Saturday & Sunday. Final orientation session at 2:30pm Thursday.
CHECKOUT THE YOLO COUNTY ROTARY
INFORMATION BOOTH (MAIN EXPO BLDG)
Supporting Rotary Family on Maui
From District 5160 Governor Claire Sammon Roberts - I know that many of you are eager to help our Maui Rotary family so I am sharing this information from Ted Faigle, the District Governor Elect for District 5000, about how we can support our Maui Rotary family…I know that more information will be forthcoming as we move forward but for those of you who want to respond now, this is the best way to do so. If you have any questions please let me know.
Today has been a tragic day for our families and friends on the Island of Maui. The fires across the island have changed lives forever. Truly devastating. Our sympathy, thoughts and prayers are with everyone impacted.
Rotary members are people of action, and we can take immediate action. As we come together to recover and rebuild, we need to support each other. We need to Create Hope for Maui.
Through our Hawai’i Rotary District 5000 Foundation, a relief fund has been established. Foundation President Dave Hamil and Treasurer Sharon Amano will handle all donations.
A committee will be organized shortly to find the greatest needs for distribution of monies. A single fund will be the most helpful over time to provide the most significant benefits.
Please consider donating to this special fund using the link or QR code.
August 8th Meeting
With a good crowd joining us today, Foundation Chair Tom Schwargruber presented Blair Voelz with his 4th Paul Harris pin in recognition of Blair's significant financial contributions to the Rotary Foundation.
We were invaded by a large group of Woodland Sunrise Rotarians today: Wayne Ginsburg, Don Sharp, Assistant District Governor Ramon Urbano, and Sue Westwood. Wayne gave us the sad news that long time Rotarian and member of the Crawdads Cap Thomson passed away recently. Sue wanted us to know tickets are available for Woodland Sunrise's Annual Salmon BBQ scheduled for October 14, 2033 at Waite Hall in the Yolo Fairgrounds.
Gary Wegener reports we have successfully filled our Club's Beer Booth schedule spots, but he is seeking others who might be willing to be on a standby list in case an opening occurs. With the pot at $262 and 24 cards remaining Tim Pettit managed to find a free lunch.
With Jim Nolan in charge of Recognition, David Pinto was happy he and wife Rebecca recently spent 5 days hiking at Glacier National Park, the 37th National Park they have visited. Tabb Randolph was happy about his recent, successful halibut & salmon fishing trip to Alaska which he takes annually; even though he had a bout with COVID on his return. Brian Dwyer was happy to report work on improving Camerena Field, paid in part by contributions from our Club, has started.
With lots of time to work, Jim Nolan went on to ask several members probing questions about their spouse, children and grandchildren. Preston Schaub, Phil Safran, Lisa Dunham, and Chuck Moore were among the victims. Read their stories in the Splinter issue for today's meeting.
Our own Lori Ross was our speaker today, giving us an extensive report on her new business, Wabi-Sabi, and her first case helping her developmentally disabled son, Derek Macias, in achieving his dream of living in 'Self Determination' under provisions of California's Lanterman Act.
Meet our New Member -
Phil Safran, sponsored by Gary Wegener, was installed as a new member of the Club on July 11, 2023 by President Karl Diekman. At our request, Phil provided us with the following bio. If you haven't already done so, please take a moment to introduce yourself to Phil when you meet and welcome him to the Club.
Philip Safran - Born May 5, 1955. Youngest child and youngest son of Anne and David Safran. Board and raised in Brooklyn, New York. Attended University at SUNY Albany graduating with a Bachelor's degree in Accounting in 1976.
I worked for several Accounting firms before going to Corporate accounting. My last two jobs were working as a CFO for Corporations. Most notably, I worked for a startup company called HomewiseDocs for 11 years. The Company began with nothing except a business plan and ended up selling for a large amount of money.
I am the father of a young man named David Safran and am the grandfather of a 3 year old girl named Gabriaella Safran.
I retired from Homewise in 2018 largely due to being diagnosed with Parkinson disease. Still I was called into Homewise to work on several projects.
In my 50s I hiked to the top of half dome several times and to the bottom of the Grand Canyon. In my twenties I ran several marathons.
August 1st Meeting
President Karl Diekman, fresh from attending the Rotary trip to the SF Giants/Boston Red Sox, got things going today sporting the shirt he received at the game. Never one to be left behind, Dan Stroski wore his shirt as well.
Blair Voelz reported the Bike Campaign received its $3,000 contribution from Woodland Rotary last week, part of an effort by the Club to distribute $62,700 to various local community organizations this summer.
Lori Ross led Recognition today with a Rotary 'Guess Who' Game. Read the Splinter edition for today's meeting to get the story. Don Huff III was happy he just got back from a drift boat fly fishing trip to Montana. Shawn Seyk was happy his girls soccer team went to the Adidas Cup in Oregon where they were bumped up to the U19 Division and made it all the way to the finals before losing to the #3 ranked team in the State. Brian Dwyer was happy his son's Little League team made it all the way to the tournament in Nogales AZ.
Roger Kohlmeier managed to find a free lunch today. Mike Russell will turn 39 on August 4 (Ellington MO). Jim and Barbara Nolan will celebrate their 51st wedding anniversary on August 4th.
Woodland City Council member, District 1, Rich Lansburgh was our guest speaker today, providing a report on efforts to build a second aquatic center for the community.
Rotary Goes to
SF Giants/Boston Red Sox Game
Woodland Rotary took 54 members, spouses & guests on a bus trip to Oracle Park in San Francisco on Saturday, July 29, to attend the Giants game with the Boston Red Sox. Thanks to Yvette Roy for organizing this great outing!?
July 25th Meeting
President Karl Diekman had some good news for us today: our Club received approval of a $15,000 District 5160 grant request for improvements to the Woodland Little League Field at Camerena Field. Foundation Chair Tom Schwarzgruber presented Ernie Hodges with his 4th Paul Harris pin in recognition of Ernie's significant financial contributions to the Rotary Foundation.
Jayne Williams introduced Woodland High School Interact Club members Sophia Bruns (current Club President, left) and Manahil Shehzad as her guests. We also had visiting Rotarians Don Sharp, Charles Mack and Byron MacConnell (not pictured)(Woodland Sunrise) with us today.
Kevin & Lorie Haarberg will celebrate their 27th wedding anniversary July 27. Lori Ross celebrates her 51st birthday on July 28. Not pictured, Eric Zane will turn 44 years old on July 28 (Woodland).
Gary Bunch took the lead on Recognition today. Eric Sharp was happy he worked on the family homestead at Lake Almanor and caught some fish; plus he's going on a group camping trip with friends on the remote, rugged roads from Placerville through Rubison Springs to the Tahoma area of Lake Tahoe. Fritz van der Hoek got fined for being on television, but he couldn't talk about it because its a high profile case. Lisa Dunham was happy for a nice 4th of July at home with family.
Our program today was 'Member Highlights', featuring Wendy Casas-Raviotta and Eric Zane. Both were born and raised in Woodland and graduated from Woodland High School. Wendy was joined today by her two children, Max and Maya. Read more about Wendy and Eric's stories in Splinter edition for today's meeting.
July 18th Meeting
President Karl Diekman took charge again on this warm summer day at the Hotel Woodland. Yvette Roy says there are still a few tickets available for the Saturday, July 29 Rotary bus trip to the SF Giants vs. Boston Red Sox game at Oracle Park in San Francisco. Cost is $120 per person which includes roundtrip bus transportation and reserved seats in Section LB130. The group meets at the JC Penney's parking lot (County Fair Mall) at Noon for the bus ride to the 4:15pm game time, and is expected to return around 10pm. Contact Yvette Roy to RSVP and get your tickets.
The distribution of proceeds from the from the 2023 Dinner Auction through the Woodland Rotary Endowment Community Fund continued this week as checks were presented to various organizations. Above, Yolo Adult Day Health Center, represented by (from the left) YADHC Board members Dawn Myers, Deborah Francis, Maureen Forrest, Lorrie Irish, and Cindy Royval received its $5,500 check from Woodland Rotary’s Dan Stroski and President Karl Diekman. Today Jayne Williams presented a $10,000 check to Becky Heard, Director of Development and Community Relations with Yolo Crisis Nursery. Below, Chuck Moore presents a check for $20,000 from proceeds of the Future Farmers of America (FFA) Live Auctions which take place annually during the Yolo County Fair to Darlene Thomsen, volunteer Executive Director of the Yolo County Heritage Foundation.
Kevin Haarberg was in charge of Recognition today, asking questions about the original names of some famous people. Don Huff III 'rang the bel three times in memory of his sister who passed away last week. Derrek Kaff was happy his mother recovered from a recent bout with COVID. Jayne Williams 'rang the bell' in pride for her grandson who recently landed a job as a certified therapist.
Fire Chief Eric Zane gave an update on the serious, four-alarm residential structure fire on the south side of Lincoln Avenue (400 block) between College and Elm Streets last Saturday afternoon.
Program Coordinator Wendy Casas introduced our guest speaker today, Katelyn Reimer, Director of Hospitality for Matchbook Winery, who gave us an overview of the popular local winery owned by the Giguere family. She also provided us with some samples of their wines.
Rotary Releases Funds to
During July 2023 the Rotary Club of Woodland and the Woodland Rotary Endowment have donated more than $62,700 to local community organizations. Annually the Club sponsors a charitable banquet/auction to raise funds for specific local charities or public institutions. Examples of recent projects funded by the Club include a new scoreboard for the Woodland High School stadium; the children’s playground at the Yolo County Bauer Building; a new flagpole in front of Woodland City Hall, and new fields for the Woodland Girl’s Fastpitch League.
This year the Club decided to fund several smaller projects and sought applications for funding from the community. We are happy to announce the following local organizations have received donations:
Woodland Little League - $9,260. These funds will be used to replace the aging back stop at Camarena Field, located at Christiansen Park in Woodland, CA
All Leaders Must Serve - $5,000. This money will help provide mentoring aid for young adult leaving high school and needing help to determine their life’s path.
The Bike Campaign - $3,000. These funds will be used for several projects. New, secure bicycle racks at the local schools; the purchase of thirty new bicycles for 2nd through 6th Grade “bike skills training” at various Woodland Elementary Schools.
Mosaic- Woodland Children’s Museum - $10,000. This money will be used to build out their Toddler Exhibit. Designed especially for toddlers, the Toddler Exhibit puts our youngest children in charge and lets them learn through role playing and decision making in a safe environment.
Friends of Adult Day Health - $5,500. This money will help to provide services to frail or dependent adults that require an array of long-term care and services to promote health and wellbeing.
Yolo Crisis Nursery - $10,000. This money will go to help build a new nursery in South Davis, and will expand services provided to families in need.
An additional $20,000 was donated to the Yolo County Fair Heritage Foundation. This money came from proceeds of the Future Farmers of America (FFA) Live Auction which takes place annually during the Yolo County Fair. The money will be used to construct a new Auction/Show Ring where youth can display the animals they raised and cared for.
July 11th Meeting - New Rotary Year Begins
Hello President Karl Diekman!
President Karl Diekman began his reign in front of a good crowd at the Hotel Woodland today. It was a busy day since our last regular meeting was three weeks ago.
Immediate Past President Shawn Seyk introduced Diego Borgess and his mother Cecilia as his guests today. Diego graduated from Woodland High School this year with a 4.38GPA and was one of our Club's Scholarship recepients. Diego plans to attend Sonoma State University in the Fall studying Musice Education. Shawn reports our Scholarship winner from Pioneer High School, Tobias Rocha, graduated with a 4.33GPA and plans to attend UCD with a double major in Russian and Political Sciene. We hope to have him join us at a future meeting.
Club Foundation Chair Tom Schwarzgruber presented George Burger with his 7th Paul Harris Pin in recognition of George's significant financial contributions to the Rotary Foundation. President Karl Diekman inducted Phil Safran of Davis as a new member of our Club. Phil was sponsored by Gary Wegener. Steve Venables stood in for Gary during the presentation.
President Karl announced the Club was beginning the distribution of proceeds from the 2023 Dinner Auction through the Woodland Rotary Endowment Community Fund. Club Grant and Service Committee Chair Blair Voelz presented a $9,620 check to Woodland Little League, represented by Brian Dwyer, President of the Woodland Little League. Brian was joined by his son Cohen Dwyer (left) and Riley Salvemini who are star players this year. Blair also presented a $5,000 check to All Leaders Must Serve represented by Jayne Williams, ALMS Founder and Executive Director. UPDATE: On July 12, President Karl, Blair Voelz and Yvette Roy presented a $10,000 check to the MOSAIC Woodland Children's Museum (from the left: MOSAIC Board members Scott Montgomery, Mair Winger, and Board President Jennifer Cruickshank). More presentations are expected in the next few weeks.
With the pot at $710 and just 10 cards left, Nick Ronoroni asked his seatmate, Cohen Dwyer, to select his card. COHEN FOUND THE JOKER!! Nick said he plans to donate his winnings to Woodland Little League.
President Karl was our speaker today, providing us with a discussion on the 2023-24 year ahead, his Rotary Journey, and some of the goals he looks to accomplish. To see all of the slides included in President Karl's visual presentation click here. ?View President Karl's Leadership Plan 2023-24 here.
Rotary Theme 2023-24
Gordon McInally, 2022-23 Rotary International President
Claire Sammon Roberts, 2023-24 Governor, Rotary District 5160
Please consider donating to this special fund using the link or QR code.
BEER BOOTH UPDATE FROM GARY WEGENER:
CHECKOUT THE YOLO COUNTY ROTARY
Lori Ross was happy she and husband Art became 'empty nesters'
Ladies T-Shirt Item#: RFTEE4MC