Meeting Notes from April 10, 2018
 
By Neil Gambow
Photography by John Searles
 
Meeting called to order by President Marv at 7:15 a.m. on the dot and the Rotary Pledge was led by Ann Searles.   The thought for the day was given by Harold Bauer in the form of a poem about aging by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
 
Announcements 
 
Ann Searles – Services for Don Gwinn’s mother-in-law will be held Saturday, April 14, at 3 p.m. at Three Crowns chapel (the former Swedish Home).  The Aging Well Conference is coming up on May 4 at the Levy Center. Volunteers are welcome.  Horton Kellogg is now home and would appreciate calls from his fellow Rotarians. 
 
Chris Joyce – Tonight (Tuesday) the final event of Pathways to Peace, a three-part series, "Sustaining the Peace," will be held at RI from 6-7:30 p.m.
 
Bruce Baumberger – Our Youth Exchange student from seven years ago, Oton Ortega, is coming back to Evanston as a Northwestern undergraduate student in civil Engineering.  He has been in contact with us and looking forward to seeing us again.   This was also noted by our guest, Marga Hewco.
 
Lucas Albright – looking for a couple of volunteers to help him finish his move this Friday, April 13.
 
Elaine Clemens – We are actively collecting baby food or donations for the Infant Welfare Society.  A list of the foods that are acceptable was sent out in an earlier email.  She then gave a brief history of the organization through 1946.
 
Marissa Naujokas – The Taste of Evanston Committee is ramping up and is looking for people to join the effort.  They are now meeting every other week.  Randy Usen is leading the work to secure sponsors and will take any suggestions.
 
Kea Gordon – The Vocational Service Committee has awarded a two-year scholarship ($1,000/yr.) to Kirkland Codd, who will be attending Joliet Junior College.
 
Neil Gambow – The Garden Club of Evanston is sponsoring a program called “Climate Conversations – Get On Board” on April 19 from 6:30-9:00 p.m. at RI. 
 
Linda Gerber – The volunteers for the trip to Mexico are leaving this Friday, April 13.  Linda gave a detailed description of the trip and who they were meeting. 
 
Zbig Skiba – He gave a detailed presentation on the Tree Planting and Celebration.  The project has achieved its goal of the number of trees equal to the number of club members.  The planting will be done on May 5 at Elliot Park, starting at 10 a.m.  There will be a celebration afterwards.
 
Marv Edelstein – There is a District 6440 Assembly Training Seminar on April 28 at Harper College starting at 8 a.m. focused on training for the various roles in a Rotary Club.  Anyone leading a club committee or serving in any capacity with the club is urged to attend.  Check the District 6440 website for more information.  The next Board meeting is moved from April 16 to April 23.
 
Roasts & Boasts
 
Ann Searles – boasted the recent Evanston Round Table newspaper for publishing an article on Rotary’s program, “End Polio Now,” featuring Carol Pandak of our club.
 
Program
 
21st Century Dads: Breaking the Cycle of Father Absence
 
Speaker: David Hirsch, Senior VP and Financial Advisor
 
David started out by asking the fathers in the room to participate in an exercise to fill out a small card showing ages of children, grandchildren,and so on and he would come back to it later.  He quoted some statistics concerning fatherless children that drove him to this calling:
 
  • Fatherless children are four times more likely to grow up in poverty.
  • Fatherless children are nine times more likely to drop out of high school.
  • There are 24 million fatherless children in America.
  • The issue is not race-based.
 
When he was six years old, his parents divorced and he was raised by his mother and grandfather, who played a major positive role for him.  After the birth of his fifth child, he committed to his wife to be a better father and began to dive into the subject of fatherless families.
 
His first real public project was a meeting at the Union League Club to discuss the issue.  He invited Mike Singletary to attend as a draw,which worked very well, as he had 129 people attend.  One action was to solicit essays from young people on the value of fatherhood.  Some 30,000 essays came in and in the ensuing review process, selected 500 essays for publication in a book.  That book found its way to Harpo Studios and resulted in an interview with Oprah Winfrey. 
 
In 2015, he decided to cycle the entire length of Route 66 to honor dads.  It took 21 days to go 2,325 miles and he did it.  He now uses cycling at an inside track to engage people in his program.  David wrote the book “21st Century Dads” recounting his honor cycling trip which was donated in his honor to the library by our club.  The motive for the book is to keep him and others from falling into the trap of complacency about the subject. 
 
At the end of the program, he came back to the exercise.  He asked each table for the high and low score for the exercise, which was simply to add up all the ages of the people on the list which is the years of fathering.  The high score was an astounding 816 for Don Chirco and the low was 10 for Jacob Bachmann.  Dave asked both to see him after the meeting.  He then closed his comments by handing out a very nice custom-designed “Great Father” coin to all the fathers. 
 
David Hirsch and Marv Edelstein
 
Guests and Milestones
 
Visiting Rotarians
 
John Hewco – General Secretary, Rotary International
Marga Hewco – Rotary Club of Chicago
David Hirsch – Speaker and member of Rotary Club of Chicago
 
Other Guests
 
2nd Lt. O. Lawton Wilkerson – Guest of David Hirsch, Veteran of WWII and a Tuskegee Airman (how cool is that!!)    
C – Exchange Student
Shannon Seidler – Guest of David Hirsch
Bill Blanchard – Guest of David Hirsch
Jane Grover – Guest of David Hirsch
 
Guest O. Lawton Wilkerson, a former Tuskegee Airman, was sitting at Harold Bauer's table
 
Birthday
 
Ken Green
 
Club Anniversaries
 
Helen Oloroso – 8 years
Bill Vernon – 14 years
 
Paul Harris Awards
 
Marv Edelstein – PH+1 (this was awarded on March 13)
 
 
Sponsors