Dear Doug - you are one of my favorite people, Jan. (WVRC on Nov 14th)
Yes, that's Jan Cipolla, who prints our Windmill. The note was enclosed in some
material she sent Doug this week - and it's an example of what I am asking EACH
ONE of you to do, please. No printed cards, but some message, to Doug at home.
We had a really full meeting. Started off with the Pledge, by DON PARKS. PP
STEVE DAY and PP JIM DOWNIE combined on You're a Grand Old Flag. LEE DUNAYER
provided the Invocation, which was "The International Responsibilities of a
Rotarian" written by Cliff Dochterman. This stresses our need to develop a World
View, while maintaining our own citizenship responsibilities.
We had a number of guests. STU GILMAN led off with two Special Guests -
Steve Lore is a contractor, former member of Wilshire Rotary, and likes the
idea. Ed Gault is a neighbor, and is a retired actuary. TONY MARRONE brought Bob
Wilson, who has chaired the recent capital fund drive at UCLA - and I think he
belongs to Santa Monica. PP JOHN SINGLETON had his son, Todd, who is also a
Special Guest. KEVIN
KOMATSU introduced Yvette Garfield, PP of UCLA Rotaract, and RUDY ALVAREZ had
her counterpart, Karina Quintero, who is the current President. PP STEVE DAY
brought along one of his partners, Arnold Anisgarten, who is a big UCLA fan.
PP JIM SUMNER was accompanied by Warren Dodson - and Warren always points out
that he isn't a guest, since he pays his own way! Prexy TED brought his own
Special Guest, Bob Flick. Bob is an attorney, lives in the Palisades, and is on
the Board of Junior Achievement. Finally, RALPH SMITH introduced Geoff Wilson
and Tina Foster, both of whom are with Junior Achievement. Summary - that's at
least FOUR Special Guests, and we salute STU, JOHN, and Prexy TED for bringing
Some special recognition's: PP HOWIE HENKES was asked to step to the podium.
This month marks the FIFTIETH Anniversary of HOWIE joining WVRC - that's some
record! Prexy TED had an anonymous donor who provided a brand new Ulysses S.
Grant note (that's fifty big ones, in case you didn't know) and based on a
dollar a year, HOWIE richly deserved this award. PP JIM DOWNIE was saluted for
his long-time lugging of that heavy keyboard, for monitoring our sound system,
for knowing where all the switches are - indeed, for making our music program
go. We are in your debt, JIM.
PP STEVE DAY provided six tickets to the recent UCLA/Stanford football game to
Sean Scott, who used them to bring some inner city kids to the game. STEVE, that
was a nice gesture - and as I said before, most of us don't do as many nice
things as we could.
Birthdays were upon us, but truth be told, most of those who came along in
November weren't there for their recognition. Anyway, SUSAN ALLEN started out in
Detroit, on the 4th. MIKE YOUSEM chose Omaha on the 6th, and PP TOM LENEHEN
liked that date also, but he started in Evanston, Illinois - which he pointed
out was the home of Rotary International. ALON DORON started out in far-away Tel
Aviv (and we've missed you, ALON). Nearby Santa Ana spawned HENRIETTA LIAN, on
the 16th (just missed a double fine, since birthdays falling on a meeting day
get to pay extra). NEVIN SENKAN also choose a far-away birthplace, Ankara,
Turkey - on the 20th. The next day was special for LEE DUNAYER, and Los Angeles
was the place. PP RON WANGLIN also liked
Los Angeles, on the 23rd. AL BELLANCA came aboard in Buffalo NY, on the 27th,
and DON NELSON chose San Diego, but preferred the next day. PP JIM SUMNER is
from Spartanburg, South Carolina (and you'd never know it from his speech) but
anyway, his date was the 30th. Congrats to all.
Prexy TED found a young coach, Sean Scott, who has worked with TED'S twins on
basketball. They played their first game at the Palisades Rec. Center recently,
and WON. And who was a courtside spectator but Jack Nicholson - (maybe scouting
long term for his beloved Lakers). Anyway, this coaching ability will be put to
good use as Sean forms the Westwood Rotary Young Stars Basketball Team. The team
will draw from the Venice Boys and Girls Club, and these kids are mostly from
single parent families. Certainly they are at-risk youngsters, but with the
financial help of Sally Phillips they can be brought along in the sport they all
love, Sean spoke of his own boyhood, with basketball giving him a chance to
break out of the mold of his inner-city life. He played at Maryland, and has a
gift for getting his kids to not only play well, but to see another side of life
beyond their immediate surroundings. Sean concluded his remarks by presenting a
jersey of the
Westwood Rotary Young Stars to Coach Steve Lavin. Helena Selkirk was also with
us - she is the Athletic Director of the Venice Boys and Girls Club, and they
have an ambitious program which she supervises.
I spoke briefly about PP DOUG DESCH. He is not well, and I reminded everyone of
what a special man he is. DOUG joined WVRC in 1976, and was President in
1980-81. He was our Rotarian of the Year in 1983-84, and District Rotarian of
the Year in 1995. DOUG'S tender, loving care for Opal as she slipped further and
further into Alzheimer's was an example to all of us. He has been our Executive
Secretary for twenty-two years - and I always refer to him as the man who owns
and operates the Westwood Village Rotary Club. I will repeat what I asked at our
meeting today - I would like each of our members to send a note to DOUG, telling
him what he has meant to you - he is special, and we want him to know how much
we appreciate his many contributions.
There were a whole slew of announcements: In date order, here they are -
November 16th, Computer Class at DAVE WHITEHEAD'S office, 1 p.m.
Nov. 19th - Yearling Breakfast at Holiday Inn, 0730, HARLAN LEWIS.
Nov 22nd - FRIDAY, joint meeting with LA 5, at the Cathedral of our Lady of Los
Angeles - busses leave at 10 and 11 a.m. and please WEAR YOUR COLORS! December
15th - "Pearl" at the Geffen, 2 pm - GEORGE DEA.
And of course, the biggie, January 23rd, 6 pm, R.I. President Bhichai
Rattakul. Mid-March, there will be space for 10 of us to drive down to Mexico to
help build a Habitat of Humanity home, along with a larger group from Manhattan
Beach Rotary So you can see that we are busy - and it's exciting.
PP JIM COLLINS stepped forward to introduce our Speaker, UCLA Head Basketball
Coach Steve Lavin. In his first year, Coach Lavin took us to the Elite Eight -
and YOE was with JIM on that trip! Some PAC Ten Conference highlights in Lavin's
six years at UCLA include beating Stanford twice on their home court, and
splitting with Arizona, each of us winning at home. He has won 20 or more games
each of his six years, and taken the Bruins to the Sweet Sixteen five of those
six. The only other coach with five of the last six to the Sweet Sixteen is
Coach K at Duke!
Coach Lavin began by saying he was glad to be back at WVRC - he speaks a lot,
but particularly enjoys visiting here. In reference to our new coach, Sean
Scott, Lavin noted that coaching really begins before the 8th grade – just the
kids Seas will be working with. Last night was the Bruins first game, and they
got trampled. These exhibition teams are older, more experienced, and they have
played together for awhile-
and it showed. The good news is that it was only an exhibition, and the video
will be studied to see where the Bruins can improve - so it will be a learning
Two of this year's players sat out last year - Senior Ray Young, and Junior Jon
Crispin, who transferred from Penn State. Two starters return – Senior Jason
Kapono, who led the Bruins in scoring each of his first three years, and Cedric
Bozeman, who played point guard as a freshman last year. T.J. Cummings will
probably start at forward, and several sophomores will be active - Dijon
Thompson and Ryan Walcott in particular. Entering freshmen include Michael Fey,
a 7-footer, and an eligible redshirt, Ryan Hollins, who is 6'll". Two high
school seniors who have signed letters of intent for next year are Trevor Ariza
and Sean Phales. We do recruit nationally, but try to concentrate on California.
The schedule for this year is tough: non-conference games with Duke, Kansas,
Michigan, St. Johns, and Georgetown, plus all nine other PAC Ten teams on home
Q&A - Guest Warren Dodson, what happened to Evan Burns? He did not qualify, and
has transferred to San Diego State, where he has a better chance of qualifying
PP STEVE SCHERER, how will we match up with Arizona? In 1991, 11 of 13 UCLA
players moved on to the NBA, and this year's Arizona club looks like that kind
of outfit - the best Lavin has seen as a head
ELLIOTT TURNER, what do coaches do to improve their coaching skills? They play
board games, using quarters, nickels and dimes as players, with pennies as the
ballE280A6and they are always looking for ways to improve. Lavin then
interjected that he had an hour and a half bike ride this morning, and that
helps to clear his head. When your team wins, you need to try to humble them a
bit - and encourage them when they lose, of course.
A guest asked, “Does criticism bother you?” At UCLA basketball, it comes with
the territory - as it does for football at USC. PP STEVE DAY - Why do you have a
handout on Ray Young? (My notes now show some of what I would call dissembling –
that is, "My dad was an English teacher, and I was the youngest of six kids. He
installed basic core values in all of us). The average tenure of anyone who
makes it to the NBA is three years, which leaves about fifty more years without
basketball - so everyone needs a life plan.
PP HOWIE HENKES – Will we press this year? Sometimes, but not consistently. We
will change our defenses, and mix them up.
DAVE MATSON, In recruiting, do you look for chemistry, or scoring? We have
tortoises, who are slow but steady, and some rabbits - but we need some of both.
Different schools have different expectations.
Coach Lavin, thanks for your time - and good luck this season….
Final note - Don't forget to write to DOUG, and don't forget that we won't be
meeting this Thursday at noon, OK?
YOE, Ernie Wolfe