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Call To Order - President Dudley Thompson

President Dudley Thompson opened the 5,380th Civic Thursday in-person and zoom meeting at 12:30 pm. 

Thought For The Day - Dudley Thompson

President Dudley gave an impromptu Thought for the Day from his notebook of ready-to-use inspirations. He quoted Winston Churchill: “Success is not final, failure is not fatal, it is the courage to continue that counts.”  

Visiting Rotarians and Guests

Past President and Past District Governor Ed Jellen announced there were no visiting Rotarians. Online, his guest was his wife, Julie Jellen. In the Ballroom, Leeann Alameda, Bruce Nye and Stew Epstein introduced their guests.

New Member Induction – Kevin Jenkins

Gary Flaxman introduced our newest member, Kevin JenkinsKevin was elected as a trustee to the Peralta Community College District in November 2020. He helps students, faculty and staff in many ways such as furthering educational opportunities and addressing school safety and COVID concerns. Kevin is also the proud father of his son Elijah. Welcome, Kevin!


President Dudley made the following announcements:

Thanks to Past President Carla Betts who decorated the Ballroom tables on St. Patrick’s Day and provided additional décor to President Dudley in the form of a flashing green light on his bowtie for the day.

Thanks to the volunteers who worked at the Oakland Marathon’s Rotary water station for six hours. For the first two hours, runners received extra-strong Gatorade and presumably extra strength. At that point, Rotarians learned they should be diluting the drinks with water.

Thanks to Tom Limon for organizing the Weekend Ski Trip.

Thanks to Jesse Schmidt and the Business Development Committee for putting on a successful Margarita Mixer attending by some 60 members and guests.

Weekly meetings will continue in-person in the Ballroom and on Zoom for the month of April. However, there will be no noon meeting on the 28th because the annual Gala takes place that night.

The Club now has a Meeting Production Team, whose job it is to come in, set up and put on the weekly meetings. It replaces the Audio-Visual Committee. Today marked their first day on the job.

Re-Introduction of Ed Jellen

Past President Michael Bruck reintroduced Past President and Past District Governor Ed Jellen. Ed is a California native from Los Angeles who was elected class president twice as well as student body president and voted most likely to succeed. His first job at the age of 13 was as a paperboy delivering the “Los Angeles News” on his bicycle to 50 customers. His other work experiences include dishwasher, busboy, and stockroom clerk. He also was a delivery person for his father’s furniture store. Ed graduated from UC Berkeley and then from Cal School of Law. He practiced law in San Francisco for 15 years and has been an Adjunct Professor at UC Berkeley and Stanford. He was appointed to serve as US Bankruptcy Judge in the 9th Circuit Court where he served for 25 years. At the Rotary district level, he served as District Governor in 2014-2015. He’s initiated many projects and has been a major donor to the Paul Harris Society. Ed enjoys photography and bridge and is an avid reader and crossword puzzler while listening to 50’s rock and roll music. 

Oakland Rotary Endowment Campaign

Past Pres. Linda Chew gave a gave an update on the Oakland Rotary Endowment Campaign underway this month. In just the past six years, ORE has given $1.16 million to local and international communities including 65 grants to local nonprofits. ORE funds KinderPrep, Enterprise Institute, Karl Stucki World Community Service, and Saroni-Lena Scholarships to name a few. 

A gift of $150 can purchase 2+ wellness backpacks for veterans. For $250, supplemental classroom materials can be provided to a KinderPrep teacher. $1,000 can purchase a computer to give homeless people electronic access to the services they need, and $2,500 can provide a scholarship to a Saroni-Lena student for one year’s tuition.

Linda was followed Kelly Friedman, Executive Director of City Slickers Farm (CSF). With support from ORE, CSF has increased wellness and built community through access to gardens, green space, and city farming. They run the west Oakland farm park on 1.4 acres with 37 chickens, ducks, a rabbit, garden and other farm features. CSF grows food/plants for education purposes and to give-away to the community.  Kelly expressed her appreciation for Rotary’s support!

Linda returned to the podium to announce about $60,000 has been donated toward the $100,000 goal. The campaign is in the final stretch. For postponers, aka procrastinators, now is the time to donate. To pay online go to www.oakland-rotary.org/donate . Choose Oakland Rotary Endowment for your donation.

Speaker for the Day – Gary Meyer

C J Hirshfield, introduced today’s speaker Gary Meyer. Gary’s knowledge of film is unmatched and is the founder of Landmark Film chain, former co-director of the Telluride Film Festival and inductee into the San Francisco Film Hall of Fame. 

Gary first showed a slide of the new Academy Museum in Los Angeles which recently opened. The museum has a theatre, gala space under a transparent dome, and other museum exhibits. Some exhibits include features on The Wizard of Oz, North By Northwest, ET, and other famous movies. The museum also dives into the history of makeup artistry, animation and silent films. There is a collection of Oscars in a semi-round room displaying various Oscars from past winners.  

This year the Academy Awards are changing some formatting and being hosted by a trio of women including Amy Schumer.    

For Best Documentary, most of the nominees can be streamed online. Summer of Soul and Flee are two that are fabulous, he says. Two short documentaries made by San Francisco filmmakers are nominated.  

In a peculiar twist this year, the Best Actress nominees are not in any of the films nominated for Best Picture. Best Director is an interesting category, but Gary thinks Jane Campion from Power of the Dog will be the likely winner. Best Picture is a toss-up between Coda and Power of the Dog. Coda would be a surprise winner, but many think it could win as a dark horse.  

Ukraine Relief Donations

President Dudley talked about many suggestions that have come in for making donations to benefit the needs of Ukraine people. The Karl Stucki World Community Service Committee vetted these suggestions and has recommended two places. One is World Central Kitchen which is providing meals within Ukraine. The other is The Rotary Foundation Ukraine Relief Fund. It will administer emergency grants of $50,000 each to Ukrainian Rotary Districts or Districts in bordering countries to provide shelter, medicine, clothing and other needs.  

Also, Barbara Beery has a friend who is giving $10,000 towards Rotary Ukrainian efforts and will match the gifts of others. At the meeting, the following Rotarians pledged gifts toward the match: Barbara Beery, Alex Poulsen, Peter Sherris, Ralph Sklar, Robert Kidd, Deep Rajbhandari, Lois Corrin, Jim Boessenecker and Joe Goralka.


Keith Uriarte rang the bell for Kevin Jenkins.

Lorna Padia Markus, Mary Rudser, David Douglas, Linda Boessenecker, Robert Kidd, Michael Bruck, Dudley Thompson, Peter Sherris, Jack McAboy, Linda Chew and Joe Goralka rang the bell for Ed Jellen.

Elida Scola rang the bell for David Stein.

Keith Uriarte rang the bell for Renia Webb.


President Dudley adjourned the meeting at 1:33 pm as he reminded us to Serve to Change Lives and Don’t Keep Rotary a Secret!

Next Meeting, March 31 – David Montejano – North-South Commerce During the American Civil War

Robert Kidd, Speakers Committee Chair, announced next week’s speaker is David Montejano, Professor Emeritus of Ethnic Studies and History at UC Berkeley. He will discuss commerce and merchants, both North and South, who engaged in treasonous but highly profitable trade with the enemy during the American Civil War. 

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