Rotary Club of Santa Maria South

 
Club Executives & Directors
President
President-Elect
President Elect Nominee
Past President
Secretary
Treasurer
Community Service
International Service
Chair Vocational Service
Youth Service
The Rotary Foundation
Public Relations Director
Chair Membership
Web Master
 

Bulletin Subscribe

Subscribe to our eBulletin and stay up to date on the latest news and events.

 

Club Information

Welcome to our Club!

Santa Maria South

Service Above Self

First Three Mondays of Month - 6:00 p.m.
Santa Maria Inn
801 South Broadway
Kent Room
Santa Maria, CA  93454-6668
United States
DistrictSiteIcon
District Site
VenueMap
Venue Map
 

Home Page Stories

Rotarians Hard at Work ...
 
The Best Man for the Job ...
 
Vicki and Fran Slaving in the Kitchen ...
 
Bob Stirring Things Up ...
 
There was lots of work done by some excellent Rotarians.  Thanks (alphabetically) to David Bixby (minus a dog with 4 names), Vicki Conner (chair of the event), Peter Garcia, Joe Gruba (and his new knee), Fran Hutchinson, Paul Moe, and Bob Peters.  We got to do extra because the lady doing the first feeding was supposed to have 20 kids helping her, none of whom showed up.  Our menu was chili dogs (David did not get to repeat his star performance from a few months ago because the in-house supervisor insisted on heating the dogs in the oven, so they wouldn't split [which they did, any way], but he regaled us with stories of cases past, present and future), cole slaw, strawberries (brought by the lady from the first group -- packaged by Naturipe, out of Salinas, huge, bright red inside and out, juicy and sweet), cheesecake (also from the first feeding) and sodas.  Ask Bob Peters about the can of extra-light soda he discovered; it will be on display at next Monday's meeting for those who might want a taste treat.  If you weren't there, you missed a good time.
 

 
On November 9, Rotary Santa Maria South honored club member and guest veterans in attendance with a complimentary bottle of wine. Veterans introduced themselves and described their service history. The evening's program was about the Veteran Success Center at Allan Hancock College, presented by Dean of Student Services Rob Parisi.

 
Club member Joe Gruba, chairman of the International Committee, showed club members the water filtration system being recommended for use in La Paz villages. Rotary Santa Maria South Board will be discussing a possible donation for sending some of the filtration systems to La Paz. Systems are available at $50 each and can transform hundreds of gallons of water into drinking water.
 
 

 
On Monday, October 19th, District Governor Jim Bell joined members of Rotary Santa Maria South for both a Board meeting and a club meeting, sharing resources from Rotary International with Board Members, inspiring stories from Rotary with club members.
 
Board members shared information about recent the recent trip to La Paz for a needs assessment and follow-up, as well as current fundraisers and community service activities.
 
Encouraging members to stay committed to Rotary whatever their level of engagement and contribution, spoke about not only the importance of the thousands of projects Rotary directs, but the thousands upon thousands of “acts of kindness” generated by those projects around the world. Each Rotarian plays a role in bringing that to pass, according to Bell. Promising a free dinner to each charter member if his speech was too long or too boring, Bell was happy to hear that the charter members wanted to buy HIS dinner after his presentation.
 
Charter Members Joe Gallas and Alain Hurdle time Jim Bell's Presentation
 
Rotary Santa Maria South past president Bob Ogden announced a Paul Harris recognition for President Peter Garcia, in gratitude for his mother’s returning health after a cancer diagnosis. DG Bell congratulated the two of them and explained the Paul Harris recognition program for the guests in the audience. Governor Jim was also delighted with the country music provided by Peter and Bob in his honor and enthusiastically joined in the singing of the weekly club song.
 
District Governor Jim Bell, President Peter Garcia, and Bob Ogden
 
Bob Ogden, Peter Garcia and Jim Bell Jammin'
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
Joyce Ellen Lippman, Executive Director of Central Coast Senior Citizens/Area Agency on Aging, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties, was the presenter Monday, October 5th, for Rotary Santa Maria South. As she explained to club members, the organization’s mission is to help keep seniors safely and happily at home. Providing periodic senior needs assessments for the two counties, the Area Agency on Aging is able to prioritize needs and help fund programs and services to address the most pressing needs. Priorities from most recent senior survey showed that “understanding Medicare” was the most often cited need, with food and nutrition being number two on the list, indicating that economic factors are now impacting seniors’ abilities to provide adequate and healthy food for themselves. Transportation was also identified as an ongoing need. Lippman also expressed hope that recent legislation requiring both home care agencies and workers to register might help professionalize the industry, although, because it will also increase home care costs, it is likely to engender a larger underground home care industry, as well. Lippman encouraged those with seniors in facilities or in home care to make periodic, unannounced visits, and evaluate first-hand how the providers are doing. Protection of seniors is an increasingly difficult task as thousands of baby boomers each year now retire and enter the “Golden Years”!
 
Chris and Joe Gallas join President Peter at the piano and other club members in a weekly singalong.
 

 
Rotary Speaker Dr. Cherylynn Glaser, Clinic Manager of Aegis Substance Abuse Treatment Center in Santa Maria gave a presentation, followed by a spirited question and answer session.  Here, Cherylynn answers questions of club members Joe and Chris Gallas:
 
 

 
Four intrepid Rotarians, Dick Best, Vickie Conner, Paul Moe and Bob Peters, boarded the SOS mobile food wagon and drove out to the project apartments on W Alvin Street to serve the needy. 
 
 
 
 
 
The Rotary Club of Santa Maria cooked up some delicious chicken verde in the SOS truck to serve to residents of a nearby apartment complex. Our guests enjoyed the tasty meal!
 

 
 
 
 
The last week of August will find Rotary Santa Maria South International chairman Joe Gruba, club president Peter Garcia and past president David Bixby (pictured above left to right) in La Paz, Mexico, reviewing past joint club projects and meeting with the Rotario de la Paz club members about future joint projects. In addition, the three will be purchasing and delivering school supplies and textbooks for village school children.
 
On Monday, August 24th, the club held an internal club fundraiser to raise funds for the school supplies.
The fundraiser, a replay of the seventies game show “The Match Game”, featured club members in period costume, contestants, “celebrity” players and crazy, “fill-in-the-blank” questions:
 
 
 
 
“Celebrity Panel” members (pictured above left to right) at the game table included club members Pat Haley and Bob Peters, as well as PCPA celebrity Kitty Balay.
 
 
 
Contestants included club members Phil Sinco and Fran Hutchinson (pictured above far left and second right), Karen Gruba (second from left) and game show champion and club president-elect Steve Wagner (far right).
 
The “Match Game” fundraiser garnered well over the funds needed for the school supplies and a good time was had by all!
 

 
Central Coast Rescue Mission (CCRM) Director Larry Cooney was the featured speaker at the club’s August 10th meeting. In addition to describing CCRM history and residential rehab program for 18 men recovering from drug or alcohol abuse, Cooney shared plans for the organization’s new “hot breakfast” program, which will include the CCRM mobile van traversing Broadway in the a.m. to distribute hot breakfasts and coffee to addicts and homeless individuals on the streets of Santa Maria. CCRM Residential program participants Kevin McGowan (left of Cooney in photo) and Dmitri Milyaskiy shared their touching stories of their descents into abuse, their current activities in the program, and their hopes for a bright future. It was an inspiring and interesting program night at Rotary Santa Maria South!
 
CCRM - Kevin McGowan (L), Dir. Larry Cooney (C), Dmitri Milyaskiy (R)
 
 

 
Rotary Club member Victoria Conner presented an overview of the Economic Alliance of Northern Santa Barbara County.
 
Rotary Santa Maria South club members sing at the end of every meeting. Here (from left) Fran Hutchinson, Joe Gruba, David Bixby and Georgia Shore lead the club in "Everybody Loves Somebody Sometime" accompanied by Club president Peter Garcia on piano (not shown).
 
 

 
Peter Gilli, Planning Division Manager, City of Santa Maria, shared information about the Proposed Revisions to the Downtown Specific Plan.  He invited club members to participate in the July 23rd  Downtown Plan input-gathering meeting in Shepard Hall at the City Library.
 
 

 
 
On July 6th, new Rotary Santa Maria South president Peter Garcia shared priorities and suggestions for the year amid a rousing, music-filled evening of enthusiasm, laughter, and camaraderie. Starting off the evening with the club singing “God Bless America” in honor of the recent Independence Day, Peter also introduced a musical motto for the year. His choice? Everybody Loves Somebody Sometimes. (Two verses were sung by club members!)
 
Bob Ogden, Ken Parker singing - Peter and Nicolette at computer
 
On a more serious note (no pun intended), Peter shared information on meeting costs and logistics, community service opportunities, monthly activities, fundraisers, and key dates to calendar.
 
 
One highlight of his talk was the announcement, made with Joe Gruba, that the Foundation had approved the Rotary Santa Maria South travel grant for two club members to travel to La Paz in August on a fact finding and service mission to determine previous project status, future needs, and to deliver school supplies to rural village schools. Including other club members planning to go, Peter is guessing that there will be four or five club members participating in the visit this year.
 
 
Peter finished his remarks by introducing his 2015-2016 board members to the Club:
David Bixby, Immediate Past President
Stephen Wagner, President-Elect and Membership Director
Richard Best, Secretary
Paul Moe, Treasurer
Joe Gruba, International Service Director
Susan Ziemba, Vocational Service Director
Nicolette Reeves, Youth Service Director
Victoria Conner, Community Service Director
 
Other leaders announced included Phil Sinco, who will lead the Foundation and handle programs; Bill Thompson, taking charge of public relations; and webmaster Bob Peters, who also coordinates Central Coast Rescue Mission community service opportunities.
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
A small but mighty contingent of Rotarians served meals for the homeless on June 29.
Pictured above are:  Dr. Peter Garcia, Bob Peters, Joe Gruba.
 

 
Santa Maria Rotary South’s first meeting of 2015 was highlighted by a talk from Noelle Tolentino, daughter of club members Ken and Diane Parker, who gave the club an overview of the history of wine grape growing and winemaking in the Santa Maria and northern Santa Barbara County area. Club members were delighted to enjoy a wine-tasting with the presentation, courtesy of Riverbench winery, which provided tastings of its Estate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines.
 
Club president David Bixby and event co-organizer Jane Kokkinakis gave details on the club’s upcoming “Community Walk” benefiting “Growing Grounds”, a program supporting employment and recovery for local residents with mental health issues.  Zoran Sajovic gave an overview of the fundraiser he is working on and members were encouraged to participate in both to help the club support local causes.
 

 

New President David Bixby was installed at a raucous sendoff event for 2013 - 14 President Ken Parker.
ImageImage

 

 

 
Image
Image
 
Santa Maria South Rotarians supported the Central Coast Rescue Mission meal for homeless individuals on Monday, June 30, at the Foursquare Church in Santa Maria by serving meals and helping with setup and clean up.  Thanks to our club members who volunteered:  David Bixby, Peter Garcia, Fran Hutchinson and granddaughter Alyssa, Bob Peters and Georgia Shore - A great way to end the 2013-2014 Rotary year!
 
 

 

Rudy Gutierrez, City of Santa Maria, will be speaking on the exciting Special Olympics event coming to Santa Maria.  The Monday, July 21 meeting begins at 6 PM in the Kent Room at the Santa Maria Inn.

 

 

 

Interact faculty advisor Phil Norton is requesting two Rotarians to serve as judges for the Interact club-sponsored Orcutt Academy High School Speech Contest May 19th. Contact Vicki Conner if you are interested. She did it last year and claims it was great fun to see what the students included in their speeches. Please consider volunteering, as we want to support our Interactor projects!

 

 

Image

Caption: Rotary SM South club president Ken Parker, Talent Show Winner of First Place Coast Hills $1000 prize Isaiah Guerrero and Bob McIntyre, representing Coast Hills Federal Credit Union

Image

Isaiah Guerrera, First Place (r), Melody McCormack 1st Runner-Up (l) and Emily Rich (c) 2nd Runner-Up

Area teens took most of the top honors in Saturday’s "Santa Maria Has Talent!" competition, directed by Rotarians Georgia Shore and Diane Balay.

Fourteen-year-old Santa Maria pianist Isaiah Guerrero walked off with an armload of trophies when he won first place for his performance of his original composition Sonata in G minor as well as the “Outstanding Teen Instrumentalist” award.  Guerrero was presented the first place $1,000 Coast Hills Talent Award by Dr. Bob McIntire, representing Coast Hills and Santa Maria Rotary South club president Dr. Ken Parker. Rotary Santa Maria South and Coast Hills Federal Credit Union have co-sponsored the talent event for five years.

Twelve-year-old Lompoc dancer Emily Rich won double awards as 2nd runner up with her authentic Flamenco and also took the “Outstanding Achievement in Dance” award.   Adult Santa Maria singer Melody McCormick also was a double award winner when she was selected 1st runner up and winner of the “Outstanding Achievement  in Singing by an Adult”.

Santa Maria teen sisters, Kristina and Isabella Melsheimer, won “Oustanding Achievement in Singing by Teens” and took home the coveted people’s choice award as “Santa Maria’s Favorite”, as well.  The Favorite award was presented in honor of Jeff Kuster, who stage managed the event for the past four years.

Image

Caption: Sisters Isabella & Kristina Melsheimer took home "Santa Maria's Favorite" honors

Santa Maria soprano Bridget Lee, 11 years old, won “Outstanding Achievement in Singing by a Child”.

Image

Caption: Bridget Lee won the "Outstanding Achievement in Singing by a Child" award

Image

Caption: Roxanne Ventriglia and Ryan Miller served as hosts for the event, also performing the opening act

Co-hosts for Santa Maria Has Talent! were business owner/community leader and performer Roxanne Ventriglia, and Ryan Miller, executive editor of the Sun and New Times, who also took home a runner-up trophy from the 2012 talent show with his foot-stomping, entertaining performance of "Trouble" from The Music Man.

 

Image

Caption: Saturday night judges: (l to r) Peter Garcia, Cynthia Valenzuela, Joe Payne, Amy Curti and Judge Jed Beebe

The talent winners were selected by a panel of judges out of more than 100 contestants of all ages over a three-night period, May 8, 9 and 10. Rotarian and judge Peter Garcia, local psychiatrist, has a degree in Music Education and studied at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. Santa Maria attorney Cynthia Valenzuela is a part-time dance instructor for Allan Hancock College, and for eight years directed the Nutcracker Ballet. Joe Payne is a professional music teacher and the Arts editor of the Santa Maria Sun. Trained in piano and voice, Amy Curti teaches music for the Artist-in-Residence program at Joe Nightingale Elementary and leads Glee Clubs at St. Joseph's High School and the Orcutt Arts Academy. Santa Barbara County Superior Court Judge Jed Beebe, president of the Santa Maria Philharmonic Society, plays violin for the Philharmonic and the Lompoc Pops orchestra and plays viola, cello, piano and organ, sings tenor and directs a church choir, as well. Attorney Matthew Guerrero of the San Luis Obispo firm of Maguire & Ashbaugh, not pictured, served as a judge Thursday and Friday evenings. He serves on numerous local boards and is an avid supporter of the arts in both Santa Maria and San Luis Obispo County.

Santa Maria Has Talent is sponsored by Santa Maria Rotary South.  Proceeds support charitable causes in the Santa Maria area and provide partial support of two elementary schools in La Paz Mexico.

 

 

At the May 5th clu b meeting, President Ken Parker announced that the club's collaborative international project to provide a computer lab for the village school in the mountains above La Paz has reached a major milestone. The "Computer Salon" as they call it, is now open, featuring a 21 computer stations...one for the instructor and 20 for students (with capability of serving two students at each computer). The computer lab project is a joint effort led by Rotary Santa Maria South, with partners being The Rotary Club of Santa Maria and the Nipomo Rotary in cooperation with Club Rotario de la Paz. Rotary International provided additional funds for the project.

In addition to the computer stations, a projector, large screen and internet capability were installed.

As Ken says, "It's amazing what a small group of international Rotarians can accomplish when they work together as a team!"

 

 

A dozen Rotary Santa Maria South club members turned out March 21st at the Madonna Inn to celebrate the club's first female member (Anne Green, inducted in 1988 as the first woman Rotarian in Santa Maria), as well as all the other women pioneering the "women in Rotary" wave. The District dinner benefited the Rotary Foundation, and also celebrated Rotary's quarter century of polio eradication worldwide. Dinner speakers were representatives of the Rotary Foundation's current and previous programs, e.g. Group Study Exchange, Rotary Exchange Student, Ambassadorial Scholarships. Keynote for the evening was Dr. Sylvia Whitlock, first female Rotary president, second woman inducted into Rotary. Dr. Whitlock described the eleven year process of legal efforts to allow women in Rotary, an effort culminating in a Supreme Court decision that also opened the way for women in all service clubs. Dr. Whitlock's club is in Duarte, California, and had only fifteen members when it challenged Rotary International.

Rotary Santa Maria South's Anne Green was also the club's first female president. Her sponsor into Rotary was Dr. Robert (Bob) McIntire, retired Air Force colonel and Cal Poly professor.

Anne, who now lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, flew in for the "Women in Rotary" dinner and celebrated her role as the Santa Maria South club's first female member with club president Ken Parker and wife Diane, other longtime friends, and newer club members.

ImageImage

ImageImage

 

 
Rotary Santa Maria South members collected and donated several "tubs of love" for the Central Coast Rescue Mission warm clothing drive. The club also helped distribute several bins of warm winter clothing to two organizations for the homeless. Clothing in the bins were collected by Orcutt Academy high schoolers. The warm winter clothing drive for homeless individuals at Orcutt Academy High School was organized by the OAHS Interact Club's Community Service Committee.
 

 

 Superintendent/President Kevin Walthers, PhD, Allan Hancock College was the club's speaker January 13th, sharing progress on bond-funded facility improvements, approach for utilizing the College's recent large gift, and his overall philosophy on better serving students.

ImageImage

 

 

Rotary Santa Maria South's Club President Ken Parker and President-Elect Nominee Peter Garcia presented an overview of the Club's Rotary District grant project in La Paz at the January 27, 2014 meeting. Rotary South has been partnering with the Rotario de la Paz Club for ten years now, providing a shade structure, classroom paint and supplies, sports equipment and sewing machines and fabric for village single moms. Last year, the Club spearheaded a joint La Paz project to build a 20-station computer lab and provide software and other school support. Rotary Club partners in the grant effort include the Santa Maria Rotary Club, Nipomo Rotary, Rotary Club of Redondo Beach, and the Rotario de la Paz Club. In October, Ken and Peter travelled to La Paz to monitor grant progress. Computer stations had been installed, but needed still to be bolted to the ground and the fiber connection had been lost due to an "errant tractor" incident, but all was being ameliorated and the project was moving forward.

As part of the program, Peter recognized the Orcutt Academy High School (OAHS) Interact Club which provided $500 for school supplies to the school, supplemented with $250 from Rotary Santa Maria South. Students had raised the money from Orcutt Academy High students donating for school supplies for the La Paz village students. Ken and Peter had received two Rotary club banners from the Roario de la Paz club and presented one of the club banners to OAHS Interactors Christian Fernandez and Jordan Bashline. OAHS instructor and Interact Club Advisor Phil Norton attended the Club meeting with the Interactors.

 

ImageImage

 

 

 

With Club President-Elect David Bixby presiding for Ken Parker who was out of town, Rotary Santa Maria South club members were presented a program January 6th by Matt Murphy, president of Presqu'ile Winery. Matt described how the winery evolved from the purchase of 72 acres of county land on Clark Road, east of Hwy 101, to the opening of the tasting room in June 2013. The winery is named after the Murphy family compound in the Mississippi Delta, which was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina.  "Presqu'ile" means "nearly an island" in French. While Matt believes that Santa Maria is "the best place on the West Coast, or possibly in the new world" for pinot noir, the winery also produces sauvignon blanc, chardonnay and syrah wines. The family's 2013 production was 5000 cases, with lots of room for growth, as the potential volume could be around 18,000 cases one day. Matt, who is a board member of the Santa Barbara Vintners Association, spends much time on the road promoting the Santa Maria Valley AVA and Santa Barbara County wines. As he says, he isn't trying to put Santa Maria on the wine map, because it's already there, he's just trying to make the dot a little bigger!

Image

 

 
 
 
Speakers
May 09, 2016
Jed Beebe
Current Status of the SM Philharmonic
May 16, 2016
Julie Brodfuher
Marian Hospital Family Practice Residency Program
May 23, 2016
DARK
Fourth Monday
May 30, 2016
DARK
Memorial Day
Jun 06, 2016
Dr. Christopher Lutman
The New Mission Hope Gynecological Cancer Specialist
Jun 13, 2016
TBD (RLYA Student)
RYLA Presentation
Jun 27, 2016
DARK
Fourth Monday
 
RSS
What millennials love about Rotary
From the May 2016 issue of The Rotarian If there is one absolute truth about millennials, it is this: Anyone who says there is an absolute truth about millennials risks being subjected to their collective eye roll. Millennials are individuals, and fiercely so. According to the Pew Research Center, most of them don’t even like being called “millennials,” let alone hearing generalizations about their shared attitudes and behaviors. Case in point: Christa Papavasiliou, 31, recoils at the notion that older folks see her generation as a bunch of selfie-snapping smartphone addicts. “I’m the...
Crisis at the doorstep
From the May 2016 issue of The Rotarian More than a million refugees from Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan streamed into the European Union last year. Most entered via Greece after a harrowing raft trip across the Aegean Sea from Turkey. Once there, they made their way north, often on foot, traveling more than 1,000 miles through the rugged mountains of the Balkan countries toward Germany. That was the uncertain odyssey facing Muhammad Mallah Hamza, a 26-year-old ethnic Kurd, in late 2014 when he decided to leave his native Syria. The trip would lead the recent college graduate to a picturesque...
What's next for Rotary?
From the May 2016 issue of The Rotarian Demographic change is a drama in slow motion. It unfolds incrementally, tick by tock, but it transforms societies in fundamental ways – and the America of the early 21st century is undergoing two such dramas at the same time. Our population is en route to becoming majority nonwhite at the same time a record share of us (like me) is going gray. Either trend by itself would be the dominant demographic story of its era. The fact that they’re unfolding simultaneously has created giant generation gaps. The United States is at a moment in its history when...
Culture: Consuming passions
From the May 2016 issue of The Rotarian A friend recently said something to me that was shocking, maybe even a little subversive. She could afford to retire now, she said, because of this amazing reality: “I don’t need to buy anything more. I have everything I need.” Was this America, home of the free parking with purchase and the brave doorbuster shoppers? The land whose fruited plains are dotted with storage lockers and Container Stores for all our excess stuff? My friend maintained her love of country but held firm. She has enough clothes; her house is fully furnished. She is done. And, at...
Travel: Strange trips
From the May 2016 issue of The Rotarian Over the years, I have regurgitated my share of dodgy dishes eaten on the road. I have had my appendix removed in a Tanzanian hospital. I have watched helplessly, imagining the discovery of my shriveled corpse, as my blood pooled on the floor of a guesthouse room in Borneo after I pulled a leech off my ankle. I know that the last place you want to end up while traveling is in the hospital. Yet, apart from the usual bodily afflictions that come with travel, even stranger maladies prey on our minds when we are abroad. Less well understood than their...