THE CLUB ASSEMBLY, WESTWOOD VILLAGE
We started off with the Pledge, led by PP JIM SUMNER. He's been there, as far
as supporting the US of A, and he added these historical notes: Our Pledge of
Allegiance was first recited by school children in 1892 - this
in commemoration of the discovery of America 400 years before. The words,
"Under God", were added by Congress in 1954. JIM, thanks for that background.
PP STEVE SCHERER gave the Invocation - first allowing us to sit down - and
again, a job well done.
As dessert was being served, President Elect PETER MORE introduced several
guests, including Pat Cashin, Executive Aide to DG Rick, who was accompanied by
his wife, Betty. John Lehne, Assistant Governor for Club Service was next,
followed by SALLY PHILLIPS, who is the moving force behind our continuing
support for Polio Corrective Surgery. PETER, as Chair of this Club Assembly,
then called on President TED IHNEN. Prexy TED focused on three upcoming, or
continuing, events. First, he reminded us of the upcoming visit of R.I.
President Bhichai Rattakul to WVRC on January 23rd - this will be an evening
meeting, at Riviera CC. Next, coming up soon is the
joint meeting with LA 5, just before the
SC-UCLA game - that's Friday, November 22nd, at Our Lady of the Angels Cathedral
downtown. The complex has only been opened a couple of weeks, and Joy and I
toured it this past week - very impressive. The Convention Center is across
their very large Patio ! - and remember we will have a bus leaving from
Westwood, so mark the date, please. Prexy TED'S final thought was that he was
distributing MYRON TAYLOR'S Four-Way
Test book, as a speaker's gift. A lovely idea, TED, and certainly well
LENORE MULRYAN, who is so closely associated with our Ambassadorial Program,
briefly introduced Erin Rattazzi, an outbound scholar who will be studying in
Capetown, South Africa, next year. Erin was a state champion hurdler in high
school, before she suffered a terrible accident. She has more than overcome
this setback, and is looking forward to her coming experience. Next, LENORE
brought forward Lee Broekman, who has just returned from her year aboard,
studying at the University of Amsterdam. You will remember Lee as an outstanding
candidate for our Ambassadorial Program, and she certainly proved that judgment
to be correct during her time there.
intent in Holland was to study the European Community as it proceeded with the
integration of the several members into a Union. During her brief year there,
she not only learned a great deal, but also formed an interfaith dialogue group,
which continues today. Composed of Muslims, Jews and Christians, other
participants included several faculty members, plus the Chancellor of the
University - which gives some idea of how effective she was in starting and
growing this innovative program. Lee then highlighted four Dutch words, and
explained each one in its relationship to English. She found the Dutch to be
politically liberal, but conservative socially and fiscally. They have drug
policies, which work for them, and as a result drug-related crime has been
reduced. Being there during the 9/11 tragedy provided additional insight into
the Dutch character. Lee is currently on full scholarship, plus full tuition,
at USC, working toward her Masters, an! d teaching two undergraduate classes in
communications. She is another outstanding example of the quality of those we
attract into our Ambassadorial Program - thanks for your report, Lee.
We next heard from the five Avenues of Service Chairs, each one highlighting
their particular activity.
BECHTEL - Youth Service, and he listed their programs, highlighted by PETER
MORE'S wonderful visual. You may recall that Jim's daughter, Ellen, has had
serious medical problems since she was five, and JIM was pleased to credit Dr
Jorge Lazareff for his wonderful care and skill in his several operations on
Ellen. Dr. Lazareff is dedicated to spreading his Global Neuro Rescue program to
3rd world countries - he will be speaking to us at a regular meeting soon.
HEUER - International Service. Leading off with the Japanese Student Exchange,
which started over THIRTY FIVE years ago, it includes our PLLUS Exhibit at the
last several Conventions, Polio Corrective Surgery, the Group Study Exchange
program, and we are working toward establishing a Sister Club with Rotary in
China. The Emergency Preparedness Program comes under their banner, and PDG
ANDY ANDERSON called our attention to CERT - standing for Community Emergency
Response Team, and their web address is
KOMATSU - Community Service. They help in so many ways - the Parkinson's
Exercise Program, Salvation Army, Braille Institute, Meals on Wheels, the
Westside Family YMCA, the American Heart Association Walk, the WLA Chamber of
Commerce, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and their newest program is Angel
Flight. This is headed by CATHY REZOS and when their pilots deliver
patients to local airports, we will be organizing pickup and delivery by car to
complete their service.
SMITH - Vocational Service. Their two most pressing needs are to revive the
Junior Achievement program, which we used at University High School recently.
It was well received, but not continued, and we have had considerable interest
in starting it again. We are participating in the District Softball Tournament -
our particular 'rival' is an upstart bunch from Manhattan Beach, led by two
former WVRC members (guess who?)
LEVER - Club Service. As you probably know, this committee runs the club
internally, and the list of their activities is indeed long. They are
responsible for the Demotion Party, the Sweetheart Brunch, Picnic at the
Siskel's, the upcoming joint meeting with LA 5, the Golf Tournament, (and while
they might deny this), the Windmill, Call a Colleague, an Evening at the Geffen
Playhouse, Dinner for Eight, our computer classes, and electronic communication
(in the persons of PP RON LYSTER and PP DAVE WHITEHEAD, plus the ever-present
Once again, we thank PETER MORE for his wonderful visuals - they helped to focus
on the affairs of each of our service committees.
YOE cannot resist one final thought
about our Avenues of Service, as briefly outlined above. Have YOU thought about
becoming more involved? - the list is long, and the opportunities for SERVICE
are unlimited! That's what Rotary is about.
Governor Richard Mendoza was introduced by PDG ANDY ANDERSON. This was
particularly fitting since Rick was one of ANDY'S Zone Representatives when ANDY
was DG in 1994-95. Rick was pleased to say that this was what really started
him on the path to being a District Governor, and certainly he could not have
had a better mentor than our own ANDY. The Rotary theme for this year is "Sow
the Seeds of Love", and Rick emphasized this during his talk. He has some
Kahunas - these being big fish who are leaders, I gather - and among those named
were our own TED IHNEN and RUDY ALVAREZ, plus Pat Cashin and John Lehne. He
pointed out that his wife, Helen, "was the wind beneath his wings".
Rick feels that our greatest challenge is membership, and he urged us to
concentrate on that activity. He feels strongly about eradicating Polio by
2005, and noted that we expect to have seen the very last of this dreadful
disease by the end of THIS YEAR. However, to be certified Polio Free, we need
three years without any polio cases, which is why the year 2005 is so honored.
Rick believes this can be our finest hour - and I would have to confess that I
feel the same way. What more important contribution can we make?
Our District Governor wants to emphasize Service Above Self, the very heart of
our Rotary Creed. He noted that Club Service is charged with keeping all our
members involved. Literacy should be encouraged, since up to 25% of all our
residents are considered to be functionally illiterate. If you think about this
handicap, you will recognize that one cannot fill out a job application, for
example. This can only lead to a lifetime of poverty, or crime.
Rick complimented Westwood Village for its twelve years of leadership in
contributions to the Rotary Foundation. He then proceeded to specifically name
those who have been real movers in WVRC. He began with LENORE MULRYAN, then
PDG'S BILL GOODWYN and ANDY ANDERSON, PP DOUG DESCH, PP STEVE DAY, PP YOSH
SETOGUCHI, PP RON LYSTER, PP GEORGE DEA, PP MIKE NEWMAN, MYRON TAYLOR and RUDY
ALVAREZ - and we salute each of you for your continuing efforts in helping
others through Rotary.
District Governor Rick Mendoza concluded his remarks by reminding us to believe
in Service Above Self. You cannot do this alone - and that is the strength of
YOE, Ernie Wolfe