Surf Beat: January 24th, 2017


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January 24th, 2017

IMG_0134President Ken King called the meeting to order at 12:30pm.


Invocation:  Randy Mulch from the Salvation Army

Pledge:  Dick Woltman

Song:     David Shaw led us in You are My Sunshine (after many days of rainy weather)

IMG_0592Lora Fisher announced that this week is President Ken King’s birthday, noting that he is the “finest” president we know. (As in fining-est.)  Lora said we would celebrate with President Kennedy’s famous birthday song “Happy Birthday Mr. President”   Kevin Quinn came up dressed as Marilyn and Lora said Ken would have a choice.  He could have a song by Kevin/Marilyn…..or……Judy Nelson dressed as Marilyn.  Who would he choose?  President Ken chose both for $500.  The club sang Happy Birthday and La Valencia presented a birthday cake in his honor.


Birthdays – Mark Leinenweber (not here) and Diane Salisbury, who chose a song for $10.

Annivesaries:  Penny Shurtleff – paid $50 for her blissful 3rd marriage.

Rotary Welcomed…

  • Sam Levy – Craig Schneipps’s guest
  • Ken Liem —  guest of Peter Nguyen, works for Coldwell Banker
  • Matt Roy – guest of John Hoss


  • Club relations:  Will Creekmur reported that there was nothing to report.


  • Bill Burch – Final report for Laughing Under the Stars  (10/29). Huge success and thanked everyone and reminisced about the process and shared the names on the committee and the sponsors. The club gave them a big round of applause!  Raised $70k for the club. Silent auction – $13k.  Great job Bill and team!!!
  • Ken highlighted the February 24th – five-way Rotary meeting, 7am at the San Diego Braille Institute, 4555 Executive Drive, San Diego, 92121. The La Jolla Rotary meeting will be held at the regular time and location.  We are not hosting this event.  The speaker will be a district leader.
  • The Model UN coming up in April.  Cindy Greatrex will provide details later.
  • Craig Schneipp – thanked all thanks essay reader volunteers for RYLA.  An email went out for instructions.  Readers do not have to show up – essays from 21 students at La Jolla High will be sent out by email.
  • President Ken announced we have several events at one time coming up in the March-May window, including the April 7th anniversary party, RYLA and more.
  • Wade Aschbrenner passed around sign ups for May 6 scholarship interviews.
  • Bob Pecora – gave an update on STRIVE – interviews will be in April or May.  He reminded every member to get involved.

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  • Lora Fisher then presented Ken with a birthday cake from La Valencia.  It was cut and distributed to the club.
  • The Wheelchairs going to the TJ Rotary Club of the Day of the Kings event.


Happy bucks:

  • Sally Fuller – paid a fine to once again tout the fact that she went to see the next president of the US and showed off her autographed red hat, as well as a photo of herself with then-candidate Trump.

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  • Claire Reiss — paid happy bucks because she was delighted to have attended the Presidential inauguration.


  • Claude Rosinsky– paid happy bucks as she is proud that Dr. Ben Carson was approved by Congress, noting that she had introduced him to Mr. Trump. President Ken then praised Claude’s philanthropic work.


Mark ChristopherWhat do I do?  Mark is the founder of Sanctuary Architecture.  Mark’s wife Ana is one of his best PR reps.  He has four children Miquele (lives in Florida), Alexandra (who gave them their first grand daughter Aanie), Ian and Eliot (managing a Michelin Star restaurant in San Francisco).  Mark has known since the agent of nine that he was destined to be an architect.  On an airplane with his mom, he opened a magazine to a page with an article on Frank Lloyd Wright and his love for this field was sparked.  He attended the   University of Michigan and went on to work in Birmingham, Michigan and worked for protégées of Eero Saarinen.    He moved to San Francisco where he designed several hospitals In 1978 he moved to La Jolla and in 1987 he made the jump to open his own firm.  His firm designs custom single-family homes – he showed us a few.  He has won nine Home of the Year awards.



John Trifiletti introduced our first speaker, Nancy Reynolds from Challenged Athletes Foundation.  She is the Senior Director of Business Development.  The Challenged Athletes Foundation’s goal is to provide physically challenged people with the tools they need to pursue active and healthy lifestyles. They advocate for all levels of physical activity as a way to enhance quality of life for all.  Nancy provided a great overview of the history, activities and monetary needs.

In 1994, an effort to help one man launched a global change in the way athletes with physical challenges are perceived and perceive themselves. Jim MacLaren was an exceptional athlete, first as an amputee and then as a quadriplegic. After losing his leg in a motorcycle accident, Jim became a pioneer, achieving feats that others never thought possible for amputees. Jim may no longer be with us, but his legacy lives on through Team CAF.

Each year they host a large athletic event in La Jolla.  This year it will be October 22nd.

Nancy introduced Carlos Moleda, Don Ankeny and James Sa – all challenged athletes

Carlos  Moleda spoke to the club from his wheelchair and shared his personal story of the loss of his leg in 1989 as a member of the Seal Team 4 in Panama.  Nine out of the ten members of his unit were wounded, four fatally.  Carlos was hit near his spine and leg, and lost feeling in his lower body, forever.  He said he was extremely angry for awhile – but a friend visited him and the wise words he said turned Carlos around.  His friend reminded him he was still a Navy Seal and the same person on the inside.  From that day forward, Carlos decided to tackle life as a Navy Seal and was re-introduced to sports with his new challenge.  Competitive sports proved to be the best way to recover from this traumatic injury, and Carlos said it literally saved his life.  He lives in South Carolina and flew in to speak and help coach and train others.  He was introduced to Challenged Athletes in 1988 – did an Iron Man and broke a record.  He is now a spokesperson and trainer for CAF and travels the world.  He recently climbed Mount Kilimanjaro –only the second person in a wheel chair to achieve this goal.  He has a wife and son and has built a nice life for himself, noting that a wheelchair will not define who he is.  He says sports empower people to tackle this given life.  He quoted a line from Rocky Balboa, “nothing is going to hit you as hard as life”.

He then answered many questions and President Ken presented the speakers with a Rotary gift of time.

In closing, President Ken shared another piece of wisdom from his grandfather.  When Ken would tout his successes and say to his grandfather “Look what I’ve done….I’m very successful!!”  His grandfather would say “money often costs too much….be careful!”.


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  Photos by Susan Rutan. Reported by Susan Rutan. Edited by Susan Farrell. 

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Member spotlight: The power of the press

When Teguest Yilma helped found the Rotary Club of Addis Ababa Entoto in 2002, she thought polio had already been eradicated from most of the world. But while Ethiopia had been free of the disease, Yilma was shocked to learn that new cases had started cropping up in surrounding countries such as Somalia.

“I was thinking, it’s not possible, we can’t be free if the countries around us are not free,” she says. Yilma, the managing editor of Capital, Ethiopia’s largest English weekly newspaper, has brought a journalist’s skills to the fight against polio. She became vice chair of the Ethiopia PolioPlus Committee in 2014. She believed her expertise in media could be particularly useful in relaying information about the campaign to end polio. “What better way of communicating than with a newspaper?”

Her efforts include  publishing information about polio vaccinations and working alongside fellow Rotary members to expand immunizations and services to children who have suffered deformity or paralysis caused by the disease. Her journalistic and humanitarian efforts have not gone unnoticed. Last year, Yilma was given the French Legion of Honor, France’s highest distinction.

“I’m really interested and I’m really motivated by the truth,” she says. “Not only the public’s right to know, but also giving the public information that makes their lives better.”

Club Meetings Unless otherwise noted, all club meetings are Tuesday, 12:00 noon – 1:30 p.m. at La Valencia Hotel, 1132 Prospect St., La Jolla (Map)  Check out the Upcoming Guest Speakers on the Club Calendar


                      Upcoming Events


Jan 28, 2017
8:00 AM – 3:30 PM


Apr 22, 2017


May 20, 2017


Jun 20, 2017 – Jun 14, 2017

Click here to visit the district website. 


Rotary Club of La Jolla is one of sixty clubs in the San Diego area’s Rotary District 5340 and one of the 34,000 clubs that make up our parent organization,

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