April 3, 2014 – Meeting Roundup – Member Biographies
This week we will have one of my favorite programs—member biographies. Over the years I have tried to speculate on these biographies and have failed miserably in predicting them. But that hasn’t stopped me in the past and I see no reason to let it stop me now.
In a new tradition, we will have one new member, Elaine Bartoldson; and one older member, Gary Fleming.
I don’t really know much about Elaine other than she works for Pantran and she has a son who is a recent college graduate. However, there are many questions that need to be addressed. Since she works for Pantran, did she ever drive a tour bus in Italy or Germany? Has she ever driven a big rig across the country delivering machinery for fracking? Was she ever a backup singer for Madonna? Has she been to the Great Wall of China? Was she ever in a documentary movie? Have we ever seen her on PBS, perhaps taking calls for pledges in the background? Did she ever race against Danica Patrick in an Indy race? Did she ever have an international fashion house? Did she graduate from WVU or another prestigious university? Has she ever even seen a good West Virginia football game (they are far and few between lately)?
More is known about Gary Fleming. He has been a banker for at least the past 40 years (that’s how long I’ve lived in the area). He worked for Suburban (how many of you know where that was?), Old National, One Valley, BB&T, Centra, and maybe others that I’m not aware of. He’s a known Yankees fan for some unfathomable reason. He personally bankrolled John Reisenweber’s Golden Moments. He’s one of those rare native Martinsburgers. He’s an avid fan of the Martinsburg High School Bulldogs.
But what about the things we don’t know about Gary? Was he at Woodstock as a roadie? Did he play shortstop in the Yankee farm system? Did he ever meet Babe Ruth or Mickey Mantle? Was he once a male model for Esquire? Did he teach Michael Phelps how to swim? Does he collect old shoe laces as a hobby? Was he ever nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize? Former member John Unger met Mother Teresa. Did Gary meet Mother Seton? Did he ever have aspirations of making an honest living, or did he always want to be a banker?
The only way to find out if I’m remotely correct is to show up this week and learn about a couple of our fellow members.
Secretary Doug Arndt started by outlining the procedure for proposing a new member (note to new members: you are allowed and encouraged to propose members yourself). He also gave the method for resigning—send him a letter or an email. To transfer, one only has to be a member in good standing with our club which means your dues are currently paid.
We have had a net gain of four new members since Mike Hornby became president. One huge loss that we have had is Herman Dixon, who is moving to South Carolina.
We received a District Community Grant for $1,500 which will go to Catholic Charities. More on that later.
We also talked about the Pancakes for Polio Memorial Day Breakfast from 8-11am. Once again, we need a lot of volunteers to cook and serve breakfast.
Answer to last week’s question:
There are many reasons to go to the district conference. The number one attraction is the show put on by the exchange students. It’s worth it just for that. Another reason is the opportunity to meet other Rotarians from around the district. I have made many friends over the years at the district conference. You can learn what other clubs are doing, both as projects and as fund raisers. The plenary sessions provide a lot of information about Rotary and about the district. Try it, you’ll like it.
This week’s question:
Who is going to be district governor in 2014-15?
Margaret Walker, Director of Eastern Panhandle Safe Community program with the Governor’s Highway Safety Program, was a guest of Manuel Washington. Steve Christian brought Jennifer Bishop, Business Deposit Officer for MVB Bank. Kathleen Trumble, a teacher at Martinsburg High School and host parent of Mora Garay, was a guest of the club.
The 29th annual Community Wellness Screening will be April 12th from 6am to 10am at the Dorothy McCormack Center. The cost is a bargain at $40 and the men can get an optional PSA test for $35. Call 304-264-1232 for questions or to register. Last year we only had 40 participants. We are up to 250 this year, but still have room for more. Be sure to tell friends and acquaintances about this terrific program.
April is Bring a Guest for Free month. If you know any good prospects for joining our club, invite them to a meeting.
President Mike announced we are $3750 short of making our Foundation goal. Our members responded by donating $2800 at the meeting. We still need $950, so bring a check this week and we will make it.
On June 13th we will have a “Pick Your Own Charity Luau” at the Purple Iris from 6-9pm. It will feature Polynesian dancers and a fire show. Cost is $55 per adult and $25 per child. It will sell out fast, so get your tickets now.
50/50 was complicated. Art Thomm bought the winning ticket but couldn’t stay until the end of the meeting. He gave the ticket to Dennis McCormick who failed to draw the Ten of Diamonds. One of them will sell tickets this week.