Rotary This Week 2019-08-23 04:00:00Z 0
This Week's Duty Assignments Loretta Rowe 2019-08-23 04:00:00Z 0

If you would like to mark your calendars,
we are scheduled at the following locations
through December 2019:

2019
Aug 23 - The Clarion
Aug 30 - NO MEETING - Observance Labor Day

Sep 06 - The Clarion
Sep 13 - The Clarion
Sep 20 - The Clarion
Sep 27 - The Clarion

Oct 04 - The Clarion
Oct 11 - The Clarion
Oct 18 - The Clarion
Oct 25 - TBD

Nov 01 - The Clarion
Nov 08 - The Clarion
Nov 15 - The Clarion
Nov 22 - The Clarion
Nov 29 - NO MEETING - Thanksgiving 

Dec 06 - The Clarion
Dec 13 - The Clarion
Dec 20 - The Clarion
Dec 27 - NO MEETING - Christmas

Blue BOLD dates are scheduled Board meeting days.

Any questions, please contact Loretta at: lrowe@maine.rr.com

Rotary Meeting Locations Loretta Rowe 2019-08-23 04:00:00Z 0
Rotary Meeting Locations Loretta Rowe 2019-08-23 04:00:00Z 0
Passing of Former Member 2019-08-20 04:00:00Z 0
08/16/19 Bits & Pieces Erik Jorgensen 2019-08-19 04:00:00Z 0
08/16/19 Hans Brandes, Girls' Youth Home in Peru Erik Jorgensen 2019-08-19 04:00:00Z 0
Craig Lapine is the founder and executive director of Cultivating Community. Cultivating Community grows sustainable communities by expanding access to healthy, local food; by empowering youth and adults to play diverse roles in restoring a local, sustainable food system; and by modeling, teaching, and advocating for ecological food production.
 
Since 2001 Cultivating Community has run programs that use a food justice lens to build leadership, civic engagement, and environmental ethics among teens. It supports garden-based education for elementary and middle school students throughout southern Maine. The organization leads and administers the City of Portland’s community garden network and operates a network of farm-stands across four of Maine’s five largest cities (Portland, South Portland, Lewiston, and Auburn) that are accessible to customers using SNAP and WIC benefits. Cultivating Community offers a Citizen Gardener Workshop Series to create and empower home and community gardeners, and its New American Sustainable Agriculture Project (NASAP) is Maine’s largest land-based farmer training program.
 
Craig serves on Portland's Parks Commission. He is on the network team for Food Solutions New England—the UNH-based entity that convenes New England’s annual Food Summit and that published the New England Food Vision. He also currently holds seats on the Portland Food Council and the Cumberland County Food Security Coalition. He is a past president of the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association and past chair and treasurer of Maine’s Eat Local Foods Coalition.
 
*08/23/19 Craig Lapine, Exec Dir Cultivating Community Bob Fowler 2019-08-19 04:00:00Z 0
MEMBERSHIP DUES 2019-08-13 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Amy Chipman
(Photo: Heydi Yajaira Sánchez Bracamonte of Perú and Hans Brandes.)
 
Hans Brandes was an engineer and project manager at Bath Iron Works Corporation for his entire career. His connection with Perú began in 2011 when his son did service work there. In 2012 he discovered Corazón de Esperanza, the only youth transition home in Northern Perú. It is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing hope to orphaned children, at-risk teens and impoverished women through the support of youth transitional homes, orphanages, schools, youth development, women’s sustainability projects, short term mission trips and volunteer programs. Hans has been a sponsor since 2012 and has travelled to the home (Casa Hogar Luz de Vida) almost every year, staying for 3 months in 2017.

Hans has worked hard to learn the Spanish language, in order to connect with the youth at Luz de Vida. The reward for all those hours spent learning the language is when you can sit down and talk with the youth and learn more about them, especially to listen to their hopes and dreams. 
 
Joining Hans for the meeting is Heydi Yajaira Sánchez Bracamonte, one of the youth who lives in the youth home in Peru. This is a truly rare occasion that one of the youth is here in the United States. Heydi was an orphan for 10 years before becoming a resident at Luz de Vida. She represents what our mission is: transitioning peruvian youth from poverty to independence. She is currently studying at the local university in elementary education in order to become a school teacher.
 
Hans and his wife, Mary, live in Maine and they have two children.
 
*08/16/19 Hans Brandes - Girls' Youth Home in Peru Amy Chipman 2019-08-13 04:00:00Z 0
08/09/19 Take Me Out to the Sea Dogs John Marr 2019-08-12 04:00:00Z 0
08/09/19 Bits & Pieces Tom Talbott 2019-08-12 04:00:00Z 0
 

Our annual visit to Hadlock Field, home of the Portland Sea Dogs, will take place this Friday. Since this ball team came to town 26 years ago, we have had a summer meeting almost every year at Hadlock. We are always warmly welcomed and have a wonderful outing in the picnic area of the ball park (past the first-base side of the park).   
 
We are sure to have a couple of the players share their experiences of what it's like to work and play for a minor league baseball team.
 
Bring a friend…prospective member…your children...your parents/grandparents...or extended family…smell the fresh-cut grass...enjoy the sunshine...and some time away from the daily grind. Go Sea Dogs!
 
The food is ball-park fare, so leave your diets at home for one day.
 
(Directions to meeting site at the ballpark: Go to the main gate and signs or ushers will direct you to the meeting site....the picnic area is on the right side of the field down the first-base line.)
 
PARKING IS AVAILABLE AT THE FITZPATRICK STADIUM LOT.
 
*08/09/19 Portland Sea Dogs at Hadlock Field 2019-08-09 04:00:00Z 0
08/02/19 Bits & Pieces Ben Lowry 2019-08-06 04:00:00Z 0
Kodak Korner 2019-08-05 04:00:00Z 0
08/01/19 Cornhole Tournament in Pictures 2019-08-05 04:00:00Z 0
08/02/19 Catherine and Tom Wilbur Erik Jorgensen 2019-08-05 04:00:00Z 0
August Birthdays & Rotary Anniversaries 2019-08-02 04:00:00Z 0
ClubRunner's Mobile App 2019-08-01 04:00:00Z 0
07/26/19 Bits & Pieces Jake Bourdeau 2019-07-30 04:00:00Z 0
Catherine and Tom Wilbur are best known for Wilbur’s of Maine, a chocolate candy store located on Bow Street, Freeport. They opened up the store in 1983 and ran it until they sold the company to their son, Andy and his wife in 2016.
 
In 1969 Catherine and Tom met in Okinawa when Tom’s Marine Corp Helicopter squadron was redeployed there from Vietnam and she was teaching on Kadena Air Force Base. They were married in 1970. After traveling around the U.S., they finally settled in Maine in 1979, where they both taught in the local area. Five years later, they decided to open up the candy store, which became Wilbur’s of Maine.
 
Tom joined the Freeport Rotary Club in 1988 and while new to being a Rotarian, was asked to chair their exchange student program….followed by a stint on the District exchange student committee as the outbound chair. He’s been working with the Rotary Youth Exchange program for about 12 years.
 
Besides supporting her husband’s Rotary efforts, Catherine has worked on projects with the Brunswick Chamber and the New England Retail Confectioners, among others.
 
In March/April of 2018 they both applied and were accepted to be members of the District team headed to Kakamega, Kenya…..as his Freeport Club has supported the Kakamega Orphanage for many years.
 
Though they are pretty much retired, they still travel and plan to go to Argentina in September to visit two of their past exchange students.
 
Tom is going to be speaking about the Kakamega Children’s Center in Kenya….their needs and accomplishments.
 
 
(Photo L-R: Betty (from Kenya), Catherine and Tom Wilbur in Kenya.)
*08/02/19 Tom and Catherine Wilbur 2019-07-29 04:00:00Z 0
07/26/19 Russell Voss, NU Brewery Alan Nye 2019-07-29 04:00:00Z 0
The community-focused brewery, NU Brewery (pronounced “New”), founded by President Chris Ventimiglia (left in photo) of Freeport and CEO Russell Voss (right in photo) of New Gloucester, is located at 437 Lewiston Road in the beautiful rural community of New Gloucester, Maine.
 
Nu Brewery is a quality driven brewery with a mission to craft innovative beers. Taking an individualistic approach to brewing, Chris and Russell have a vision to innovate the end-to-end brewing process towards scalable, sustainable beers that their customers can enjoy in the tasting room, at their favorite eatery, or at home.
 
Nu Brewery’s Craft American Light Lager....the flagship in the line-up of beers (at right).... will be produced for wholesale and retail in cans, kegs, and crowlers.
 
Their tasting room is a “teaching tasting room.” It’s about letting people know what they’re drinking, teaching them what is actually put into their beer and that raises the value of what they’re drinking. Tours of the production room are offered when the tasting room is open.
 
The two men have been friends for 20 years, and they came up with the idea for the brewery four years ago. The process towards completion has been slow, but with an outpouring of community support, they are now sharing the brewery with their neighbors. Visit their tasting room and see for yourself. For more information, go to: nubrewery.com.
 
*07/26/19 Russell Voss, NU Brewery 2019-07-23 04:00:00Z 0
07/19/19 District 7780 Governor Andy Glazier Ben Lowry 2019-07-21 04:00:00Z 0
07/19/19 Bits & Pieces Julie L'Heureux 2019-07-21 04:00:00Z 0
District Governor Andy Glazier will be visiting our Club this Friday. Andy has been a Rotarian in his heart since he started hanging around the Rotary Club of Kittery in 1991. After accompanying his significant other of twenty-nine years to more Club, District and RI functions than he can count, he finally became a legitimate dues-paying member in 2012.
 
Professionally, Andy has served as an active and reserve officer in the Army Corps of Engineers and has a successful career managing building construction, as Glazier Builders, Ltd.
 
Two of Andy’s significant “Rotary ‘aha’ moments” were a 2013 District trip to Guatemala and a 2016 District trip to Cuba, where he and Pam experienced beautiful people living in extreme poverty – families who, in spite of their dire circumstances, exuded determination, cheerfulness and optimism. These were very grounding, value-restructuring experiences. Andy urges all Rotarians to take advantage of Rotary opportunities to travel to and participate in service projects in developing nations.
 
Pam and Andy have three adult sons and three grandchildren, dispersed about the country, which provides a perfect excuse to travel.
 
*07/19/19 District Governor Andrew Glazier, Rotary District 7780 2019-07-19 04:00:00Z 0
07/12/19 Bits & Pieces Ben Lowry 2019-07-16 04:00:00Z 0
07/12/19 President Amy Chipman - Inaugural Address Tom Talbott 2019-07-15 04:00:00Z 0
Passing of Former Portland Rotarian 2019-07-13 04:00:00Z 0
Amy Barnes Chipman joined the Portland Rotary Club 17 years ago. Her father had been a member of the Club. Her mother told her “anybody who is anybody is a member of the Portland Rotary Club”! From the time she attended her first meeting, she was “hooked,” recalling how everyone was so warm and welcoming.
 
Her first year, she and Dick Giles led the drive for the St. Vincent De Paul’s Thanksgiving Dinner and was amazed at how many hands went up when asked who could volunteer.
 
After that, she was the ongoing Foundation Chair, where her knowledge and enthusiasm re-introduced the Foundation to our members. She was instrumental in educating everyone on how half the money contributed to the Foundation comes back to the District for projects here in our community; as well as the benefits through partnering with other Clubs, where we can also get very large global grants. Our members’ contributions set the bar for other Clubs…..we put Portland on the map!
 
She loves the “spinoff” activities of bonding with members through the tennis league and the ski group. She hopes to be spending more time with Club members throughout this year on service projects and socials, sharing in the wonderful fellowship we have to offer.
 
She is honored and excited to lead our Club into the new Rotary year.
 
Join us this Friday for the 2019-20 Inauguration of incoming Club President, Amy B. Chipman. 
 
*07/12/19  2019-20 Inauguration 2019-07-08 04:00:00Z 0
Volunteer Opportunities 2019-07-04 04:00:00Z 0
06/28/19 Portland Club Assembly Julie L'Heureux 2019-07-04 04:00:00Z 0
06/28/19 Bits & Pieces Jake Bourdeau 2019-07-01 04:00:00Z 0
06/21/19 Club Service Day at Fort Williams 2019-06-24 04:00:00Z 0

Please join us this Friday for an action-packed and engaging Club Assembly at the Clarion Hotel. It will include updates on our many service activities, an overview of our club’s financial health, a report on Membership, and a look back at our collective accomplishments & highlights over the Rotary Year.
 
We will also have an opportunity to thank President John for his countless efforts for a job well done during 2018-29!

Please invite a potential new member to attend, as this is a perfect opportunity to learn more about our active club.
*06/28/19 Club Assembly / Year Wrap-up 2019-06-23 04:00:00Z 0
06/22/19 RotaryFest 2019! 2019-06-23 04:00:00Z 0
MOC Photos 2019-06-18 04:00:00Z 0
06/14/19 Rocco Risbara/Dan Bacon - The Downs Julie L'Heureux 2019-06-16 04:00:00Z 0
06/14/19 Bits & Pieces Alan Nye 2019-06-16 04:00:00Z 0
In lieu of our regular Club meeting, we will have a Club Service Day at Fort Williams, 1000 Shore Road, Cape Elizabeth. 

We look forward to welcoming you to Ft. Williams Park,  RAIN OR SHINE. We will still do the work, even if RotaryFest on Saturday is moved inside. Right now it looks like we might have a light shower or two. You might want to bring a rain jacket, just to be prepared.

Please arrive at NOON for lunch, or 12:45 PM, for instructions and assignments.
Meet at the PICNIC SHELTER on your right, across the road from the main flagpole on the hill. 

Dress in long sleeve shirts, long pants and work shoes. Terrain will be hilly in some places. Bring a hat, sunscreen and bug spray of your choice. There is a some poison ivy that will be marked off and identified.

Please bring your own LABELED: Work gloves, hand snips, clippers, pruning shears, lawn or leaf rake, pole saw, string trimmer or weed wacker (gas only), pruning saw, and other items suitable for trimming, cutting and hauling debris into piles.

For those of you QUALIFIED, we could use a few more chain saws for tree work. We require that you bring all appropriate safety equipment for this work. SAFETY FIRST!

Please contact TONY WAGNER (below) directly, if you have any questions. 

On behalf of the DG John Lobosco and the RotaryFest Committee, I thank you for participating.


Tony Wagner
Rotary Club of South Portland/Cape Elizabeth
229-3254
*06/21/19 Club Service Day at Fort Williams 2019-06-16 04:00:00Z 0
06/07/19 Heather Davis, Learning Works Bob Martin 2019-06-11 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bowen Depke
 
 
 
Rocco Risbara (left) of Risbara Bros., and Dan Bacon (right), Project Manager of Gorrill Palmer Planning.
 
The Downs is a new and exciting mixed-use development in Scarborough, Maine. Located in the heart of the community, The Downs surrounds the historic Scarborough Downs harness racing track and will become home to a modern town center with supporting residential and commercial elements. The 500-acre mixed-use development will create numerous recreational opportunities and will include walking paths throughout 500 acres of preserved green space. Tree-lined streets will connect the planned community, which will seamlessly balance recreation, retail, residential, and commercial development. Together, all elements will create the premier place to live, work and play. The Downs development will bring new-found vitality to the center of town and launch Scarborough forward into its next chapter. Phase I broke ground in October 2018.
 
Pools, ice rinks, indoor and outdoor fields, a community meeting space – just a few of the possibilities coming to Scarborough’s newest athletic complex. Edge Sports Group, a company that specializes in recreational and athletic projects, has signed an agreement to be The Down’s first non-residential development. ESG is conducting a feasibility study to determine what amenities will be included within the Scarborough facility. Construction will begin this summer and the complex will open in Spring of 2021. If you’d like to weigh in on what you’d like to see at The Downs athletic complex, visit https://www.facebook.com/EDGESPORTSGROUP/
 
Phase II is in process and advancing……for up-to-date information, visit: thedowns.com
 
*06/14/19 Rocco Risbara and Dan Bacon - The Downs Bowen Depke 2019-06-11 04:00:00Z 0
06/07/19 Bits & Pieces Dick Hall 2019-06-09 04:00:00Z 0
05/31/19 Bits & Pieces John Marr 2019-06-04 04:00:00Z 0
05/31/19 Deb Nelson, Author - Finding Health After Cancer Jake Bourdeau 2019-06-04 04:00:00Z 0
Earle Leavitt's Celebration of Life 2019-06-03 04:00:00Z 0
Heather Davis joined the LearningWorks team in September 2016. Prior to LearningWorks, she was the executive director of The Telling Room, a community writing center in Portland, for five years. Heather earned a BA from St. John’s College in Santa Fe, NM, where she studied philosophy, literature, and the history of math and science. She earned an MA from Goddard College, where she designed an individualized program that combined coursework on youth development, arts education, and creative writing with a practicum as a writing teacher at TRUCE, the Harlem Children’s Zone’s after school arts and education program. Heather relocated to Portland, Maine in 2008 from Austin, TX, where she co-founded a youth writing center called Austin Bat Cave and served as the senior grant writer for Creative Action, a nonprofit arts education organization.
 
She is a member of the Institute for Civic Leadership’s Upsilon class, where alongside peers from the nonprofit, public, and private sectors, she studied a facilitative leadership model designed to foster deep collaboration in the workplace. Her professional accomplishments have been recognized by a St. John’s College Award of Merit, which is given to outstanding alumni in recognition of their achievements within their chosen field; the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities, which presented a National Arts and Humanities Youth Program award to Young Writers & Leaders, a literary arts program for refugee and immigrant youth that she designed and launched at The Telling Room; and the 2018 Metamorphosis Visionary Leader Award.
 
She is a 2019 Maine Network Partners Fellow. Heather lives in Portland with her husband Matt and two children.
 
*06/07/19 Heather Davis, Learning Works 2019-06-03 04:00:00Z 0
Deb Nelson loves a good story. While studying the relationship surrounding cancer, nutrition, and lifestyle choices, she discovered a treasure trove of inspirational stories. She set out on an adventure to capture some of these stories. Thanks to the people she met and the information they shared, Deb changed the course of her own story and is now an integrative nutrition health coach. She is energized by speaking to groups and sharing information about healthy living and supporting her clients as they reach their health goals. She can be contacted at: deb@bewellcg.com
 
*05/31/19 Deb Nelson, Author 2019-05-28 04:00:00Z 0
05/17/19 Bits & Pieces Tom Talbott 2019-05-20 04:00:00Z 0
05/17/19 Six of Rotary's Newest Members Dick Hall 2019-05-20 04:00:00Z 0
05/10/19 Steve DiMillo, Portland Waterfront Committee Alan Nye 2019-05-13 04:00:00Z 0
This Friday's Portland Rotary meeting is being organized and conducted by the new members of our Club. Come to learn more about them and join in on the fun!
*05/17/19 Portland New Members Program 2019-05-13 04:00:00Z 0
05/10/19 Bits & Pieces  Ben Lowry 2019-05-11 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jim Willey
Steve DiMillo has been working with the family business of DiMillo’s Restaurant since age 8….starting out washing dishes and working virtually every department prior to assuming the current position as Manager. While he oversees all aspects of the restaurant, his emphasis is on customer service and he’s committed to providing an enjoyable dining experience anytime a customer steps on board the floating restaurant.
 
He is active in the community, serving on various boards and committees, including the board of the Maine Restaurant Association. A 1978 graduate of Deering High School, he resides in Portland with his wife, Marge. Their son, Steven and daughter, Chelsea have joined the family team.
 
When he’s not at the restaurant, he enjoys spending time with his grandchildren, skiing, riding his motorcycle and boating with family and friends.
 
*05/10/2019 Steve DiMillo, Portland Waterfront Committee Jim Willey 2019-05-10 04:00:00Z 0
05/03/19 Brittney La Shier/Lizzy Handschy, Co-Chairs of Portland OPS Bob Martin 2019-05-06 04:00:00Z 0
05/03/19 Bits & Pieces Bob Martin 2019-05-06 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jesse Harvey
On Friday, we will have two Co-Directors of Portland Overdose Prevention Site (OPS) speak at our club meeting: Brittney La Shier (on left) and Lizzy Handschy (on right).
 
In 2017, opiate overdoses tragically took the lives of more than one person a week in Portland, and more than one person a day in Maine. We believe those deaths are preventable and that Mainers deserve innovative and effective solutions to the Opioid crisis.
 
Opening an Overdose Prevention Site (OPS) in Portland would be a powerful step toward significantly reducing these tragic deaths. In an OPS, trained medical professionals care directly for individuals as they use pre-obtained drugs, ensuring that the individuals use sterile supplies, and in the case of an overdose, are quickly revived with the overdose-reversal drug, Naloxone.
 
Operating in dozens of cities around the world, overdose prevention sites offer an affordable, effective, scientifically proven way to keep everyone in our communities safe, alive and cared for. It’s time to stop pushing people with substance use disorders out onto the streets and into the shadows. Isolation compounds addiction. Care enables recovery. Portland OPS is a new nonprofit organization dedicated to saving lives at the epicenter of Maine’s overdose epidemic, by establishing a municipally sanctioned OPS in Portland.
 
The Portland City Council Health and Human Services & Public Safety Committee will begin a discussion about overdose prevention sites at their May 14th meeting, at 5:30PM in City Hall.
 
*05/03/19 Brittney La Shier/Lizzy Handschy, Co-Exec Directors, Portland OPS Jesse Harvey 2019-05-03 04:00:00Z 0
04/26/19 Luke Holden, Luke's Lobster John Marr 2019-05-03 04:00:00Z 0
04/26/19 Bits & Pieces Ben Lowry 2019-04-28 04:00:00Z 0
Opioid Task Force Symposium Ben Lowry 2019-04-23 04:00:00Z 0

Luke Holden grew up in Cape Elizabeth, Maine – a third-generation lobsterman who started learning the trade at age 13. After attending Georgetown University and beginning an investment banking career on Wall Street, Luke was remiss to find that every lobster roll available in New York was overpriced, drowning in mayo, and diluted with celery. He craved a real Maine-style roll and simply couldn’t find one.

Luke saw an opportunity to bring a casual seafood spot, like the homegrown lobster shacks of his childhood, to New York’s culinary landscape. In 2009, Luke decided to harness his passion for excellent seafood and his family’s 40-plus years in the Maine lobster industry to open the first Luke’s Lobster in the East Village with his dad Jeff, a lobster processor, and Ben Conniff. To keep up with demand, Luke and partners opened Luke’s Lobster’s own seafood processing facility in 2012. The complete vertical integration ensures every lobster served at Luke’s is handled with care and kept pristine.

Today, Luke spends the majority of the year in Maine, where he maintains relationships with lobstermen and oversees production at Luke’s Lobster’s processing facility. He also sits on the board of the Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative, the Island Institute, and the Tenants Harbor Fisherman’s Co-op, which he helped found. Luke’s donates a portion of its proceeds to The Ocean Foundation and the Island Institute, helping preserve Maine’s fishing communities and the sustainability of our oceans. Over the years, Luke has also been included on the Forbes’ 30 under 30, Inc's 30 under 30, Zagat’s 30 under 30, and Crain’s 40 under 40.

*04/26/19 Luke Holden, Luke's Lobster 2019-04-23 04:00:00Z 0
04/19/19 Bits & Pieces Bob Martin 2019-04-23 04:00:00Z 0
04/19/19 Zoe Sahloul, President New England Arab American Organization Ben Lowry 2019-04-23 04:00:00Z 0
04/12/19 Gordon Smith, Maine Director of Opioid Response Jake Bourdeau 2019-04-16 04:00:00Z 0
04/12/19 Bits & Pieces Dick Hall 2019-04-14 04:00:00Z 0
Rotarian Magazine - Opioid Use Disorder 2019-04-14 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Curran

Zoe Sahloul is a passionate advocate for inclusion and social integration of Arabs and other Muslims living in Maine. Born in Beirut, Lebanon, Zoe immigrated to Canada in 1992 to escape the civil war and to find peace and safety. She is the founder and president of the New England Arab American Organization (NEAAO), a group whose mission is to help ease the integration of Arab immigrants into American society and bridge the gaps between cultures.

In addition to serving as a board member for several organizations, Zoe currently partners with a variety of groups including 'Through These Doors,' Westbrook Police Department, Westbrook Community Center, 'Portland Empowered,' and Westbrook School Department to support marginalized Arab communities. Zoe is also focused on creating avenues for new Arab immigrants to engage in their communities by establishing collaborative connections to create more opportunities in the workforce. She is a strong and passionate advocate for women’s rights and justice, children’s rights and protection, education, and a leading voice for immigrant social integration and racial equity in Maine. Zoe also served as the founding board chair of the Maine Immigrant Rights Coalition.

Zoe will be focusing her talk at Portland Rotary on the work of NEAOO and their efforts to support New Mainers.
 

*04/19/19 Zoe Sahloul, President New England Arab American Organization John Curran 2019-04-14 04:00:00Z 0
Leavitt Obituary 2019-04-08 04:00:00Z 0
04/05/19 Bits & Pieces Alan Nye 2019-04-08 04:00:00Z 0
04/05/19 Vanessa Pike, Fore Points Marina Bob Martin 2019-04-08 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rusty Atwood
Gordon Smith was appointed by Governor Janet Mills as the first Director of Opioid Response in January of this year (2019). Previous to this position, Gordon had been with the Maine Medical Association in a variety of positions for 39 years, the last 25 years serving as Executive Vice President. He is a native of Winthrop, Maine and a graduate of Winthrop High School, the University of Maine and Boston College Law School. He and his wife reside in East Winthrop and are the proud parents of two adult daughters and two grandsons. While at the Maine Medical Association, Gordon held a number of Board positions including the Daniel Hanley Center for Health Leadership, the Maine Cancer Foundation, the Maine Health Data Organization, The Area Agencies on Aging and Maine Quality Counts. He also was very active in a number of national medical organizations including chairing the Litigation Center and the Advocacy Resource Center of the American Medical Association. He is the recipient of several awards and honors including the American Medical Association Lifetime Achievement Award for Medical Society Executives.
*04/12/19 Gordon Smith, Maine Director of Opioid Response Rusty Atwood 2019-04-08 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bowen Depke
Vanessa Pike left her riveting insurance career in 2010 to begin a position in tourism. For 8 years, as the Membership Director at Visit Portland (greater Portland’s Convention & Visitors Bureau), she supported local hospitality & tourism businesses and promoted the destination to tourists. In keeping that theme, she now promotes Portland as a destination to tourists arriving via boat.

Fore Points Marina is a 150-slip marina presently under construction on the eastern waterfront of Portland. With slip demand greater than supply, the marina fills a void in Casco Bay for local and transient boats of all sizes. Slips range from 25 to 545 feet and the marina is being built with the latest and most advanced technology available. This is the first phase of Portland Foreside development - 10 acres of land that is being transformed to mixed-use buildings and public green space along the waterfront.

 
*04/05/19 Vanessa Pike, Director of Sales, Fore Points Marina Bowen Depke 2019-04-05 04:00:00Z 0
April Birthdays/Anniversaries 2019-04-05 04:00:00Z 0
03/29/19 Bits & Pieces Alan Nye 2019-04-02 04:00:00Z 0
03/29/19 Charles Roscoe, Schools For Refugees Ben Lowry 2019-03-31 04:00:00Z 0
Rotarians In the News 2019-03-25 04:00:00Z 0
03/22/19 Bits & Pieces John Marr 2019-03-25 04:00:00Z 0
03/22/19 Geoff Iacuessa, Portland Sea Dogs President Dick Hall 2019-03-25 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Amy Chipman

Charlie Roscoe was born in Hartford, Connecticut in 1944. He graduated from Bowdoin College and Northeastern University Graduate School of Public Accounting. As a Certified Public Accountant, he worked for Coopers and Lybrand in Boston and Portland, Maine and Berry Dunn and McNeil (BDMP) in Portland. At BDMP, he was the second managing partner, succeeding Burchard Dunn, one of the Firm’s founders. Charlie retired from public accounting in 2005.

Throughout his auditing career, and until the present time, he has served his community in many ways, including: 

Schools for Refugees, Inc., Co-founder and President
Maine Community Foundation, Chairman of the Board of Directors
Maine Handicapped Skiing (Maine Adaptive Sports), Co-founder
Preble Street Resource Center, Treasurer of the Board of Directors 
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, Board of Advisors
Maine Seniors Golf Association, Secretary
Portland Country Club, President of the Board of Directors
YMCA of Portland, Board of Directors
Maine International Trade Center, Board of Directors
Piper Shores Retirement Community, Treasurer of the Board of Directors 
Yarmouth, Maine Planning Board
Maine Health, Corporator
Breakwater School, Board of Directors 

Charlie and his wife, Susan, live in Portland, Maine and enjoy boating, golf and world travel. They frequently visit Uganda to oversee the St. Bakhita Nursery and Primary School located in the Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement, which is administered by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
 

*03/29/19 Charles Roscoe, Schools for Syrian Refugees Amy Chipman 2019-03-25 04:00:00Z 0
Rotarians In The News 2019-03-19 04:00:00Z 0
03/15/19 Bits & Pieces Tom Talbott 2019-03-18 04:00:00Z 0
03/15/19 Beth Stickney, Maine Business Immigration Coalition Julie L'Heureux 2019-03-18 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Justin Lamontagne

Geoff Iacuessa was promoted to President & General Manager of the Portland Sea Dogs on September 10, 2018, after serving eight years as the Executive Vice President & General Manager. The 2019 season will be Geoff’s 20th season with the organization. He began his career with the team as an intern in 2001 and was hired as Director of Group Sales prior to the 2002 season. In 2004 Geoff became the Director of Sales and Promotions and after the 2006 season, Geoff was promoted to Assistant General Manager for Sales and Promotions.

Geoff was honored as the 2015 Eastern League Executive of the Year. In 2011 he was named to the Portland Press Herald’s “40 under 40” list, recognizing 40 local business leaders under the age of 40. Geoff is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst with a degree in sport management. In addition to his work with the Sea Dogs, Geoff serves on the PeoplesChoice Credit Union Board of Directors, the Maine Children’s Cancer Program Board of Directors, and the Portland Community Chamber’s Economic Development & City Affairs Committee.

Geoff lives in South Portland with his wife, Kristie and son, Hudson.
 

*03/22/19 Geoff Iacuessa, President/GM Portland Sea Dogs Justin Lamontagne 2019-03-18 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rusty Atwood

How immigration policy affects Maine’s economy.

Beth Stickney directs the Maine Business Immigration Coalition (MeBIC), dedicated to providing information, education and advocacy on immigration and related issues from and for the business and economic perspective. Beth is an attorney who has specialized in immigration law and related policy for more than thirty years. Prior to MeBIC, she was the founding executive director of the Immigrant Legal Advocacy Project (ILAP), Maine’s only statewide nonprofit provider of immigration and related legal aid.  Beth has also worked on human rights and refugee and asylum issues in Central America and Europe, and is co-author of the leading legal treatise on how immigration laws impact families, Immigration Law and the Family (Thomson Reuters). 

*03/15/19 Beth Stickney, Maine Business Immigration Coalition Rusty Atwood 2019-03-09 05:00:00Z 0
03/08/19 Bits & Pieces Bob Martin 2019-03-09 05:00:00Z 0
03/08/19 Scott Dunn, Dunn Family Maple Jake Bourdeau 2019-03-09 05:00:00Z 0
03/01/19 Bits & Pieces Jake Bourdeau 2019-03-05 05:00:00Z 0
03/01/19 Thrive2027 - Co-Chairs Tony Cipollone and Katie Fullam Harris John Marr 2019-03-04 05:00:00Z 0

Scott Dunn is a fourth-generation maple syrup maker, as well as the Vice President of the Maine Maple Producers Association. Growing up in Vermont his family collected sap from trees and boiled it over an open fire to make maple syrup. Today he owns and operates Dunn Family Maple in Buxton, Maine, with his family collecting sap from about 1500 trees. Maple syrup is produced using modern technology, including reverse osmosis and a high-efficiency evaporator. Hosting several maple events each spring, Scott is able to spread his love of maple to the public by offering tours that explain the entire process and samples of their different maple products.

Scott’s presentation will cover his family history of maple production, sap collection and how they process maple sap into syrup with modern technology. The challenges associated with todays maple market and where Maine ranks in maple syrup production compared to other producing states.

For more information, go to: dunnfamilymaple.com
 

*03/08/19 Scott Dunn, Dunn Family Maple 2019-03-04 05:00:00Z 0
02/22/19 Bits & Pieces Julie L'Heureux 2019-02-25 05:00:00Z 0
02/22/19 Elaine Mullin & Carol Colton, Portland Area Villages Alan Nye 2019-02-25 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott
Tony Cipollone is President and CEO of the John T. Gorman Foundation, a Portland-based private foundation dedicated to improving the lives of disadvantaged people in Maine. He joined the foundation in 2011 and since then has helped advance a range of new investment strategies aimed at improving results for children, youth and families. Prior to that, he was Vice President for Civic Sites and Initiatives at the Annie E. Casey Foundation, where he worked in senior leadership for over 20 years and helped develop and lead numerous initiatives related to education, community redevelopment and policy advocacy, including Casey’s national KIDS COUNT project. Tony received his doctorate in Administration, Planning and Social Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education

 

Katie Fullam Harris serves as Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Accountable Care Strategy for MaineHealth, Maine’s largest health care system. She works with policymakers and employers to shape and respond to public policy and market changes; she leads the System’s efforts to develop new system initiatives that support MaineHealth’s accountable care goals; and she is presently helping to lead a system-wide effort to respond to the opioid epidemic. Prior to joining MaineHealth, Katie was the Director of Government Relations for Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Maine. She has also served as a program director for the Maine Development Foundation and as Assistant to the Commissioner for the Maine Department of Mental Health, Mental Retardation and Substance Abuse Services.

Katie currently serves on the Boards of the Maine Community Foundation, the Alfond Scholarship Foundation, and the Edward Daveis Benevolent Trust. She also volunteers for the Olympia Snowe Women’s Leadership Institute, the American Heart Association in Maine, and Rippleffect.

A native of Maine, Katie has an MS in Health Care Policy and Management from the Muskie School at the University of Southern Maine and a BA from Columbia University. She is an active runner and outdoor sports enthusiast, and she and her husband live in Cumberland with their 2 dogs.
 

*03/01/19 Co-Chairs Tony Cipollone & Katie Fullam Harris, Thrive2027 Council Matt Wolcott 2019-02-25 05:00:00Z 0
Time For a Laugh...... 2019-02-20 05:00:00Z 0
02/15/19 Bits & Pieces Julie L'Heureux 2019-02-19 05:00:00Z 0
02/15/19 Jean Yarbrough, Bowdoin College Tom Talbott 2019-02-19 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott

Carol Colton and her husband lived and worked in Massachusetts for 38 years. After raising their family, moved to Portland 12 years ago and love everything about Portland and Maine. Carol retired 6 years ago from a 35+ year career in insurance as a personal account manager, and loved the opportunity it gave her to interact with, and provide service to, her clients. Coming from a family that was always active in community service (including her Dad, a life long Rotarian), after retiring, she was looking for a way to give back to the community. Hearing about the growing movement for seniors to age in place, and knowing Maine has a large percentage of seniors, Carol was thrilled to be part of the steering committee to develop Portland Area Villages, an initiative to help neighbors age safely and securely in their homes. As a Vice president of Operations and Treasurer, she spreads her passion for this program wherever she can. Carol also serves on the Board of Directors of Back Cove Neighborhood Association and coordinates Shoveling for Seniors in Back Cove.

The mission of Portland Area Villages is to support, educate, and empower seniors in the greater Portland area who wish to remain living in their own homes as long as possible, allowing them to maintain active, social, safe, and independent lives. This will be accomplished with a multi-faceted approach which will include volunteers who will provide services to members, establishing a vetted network of professional providers from which members may draw, providing a comprehensive list of established community services available to members, and enabling social connections and activities for members and volunteers.

*02/22/19 Carol Colton, Portland Area Villages VP of Ops Matt Wolcott 2019-02-19 05:00:00Z 0
Sweetheart Auction Loretta Rowe 2019-02-19 05:00:00Z 0
02/08/19 Bits & Pieces Dick Hall 2019-02-12 05:00:00Z 0
02/08/19 Carolyn Nishon, PSO Bob Martin 2019-02-12 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Jean Yarbrough is Professor of Government and Gary M. Pendy, Sr. Professor of Social Sciences, with teaching responsibilities in political philosophy and American political thought at Bowdoin College. She has twice received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, first in 1983-84, when she was named a Bicentennial Fellow and again in 2005-2006, under a “We the People” initiative. She is the author of American Virtues: Thomas Jefferson on the Character of a Free People (Kansas, 1998), has edited The Essential Jefferson (Hackett, 2006) and, her most recent book, Theodore Roosevelt and the American Political Tradition, (University Press of Kansas, 2012) won the Richard E. Neustadt Award for 2013 (awarded annually by the American Political Science Association (APSA) for the best book on the Presidency). 

Ms. Yarbrough is the author of numerous articles and essays in American political thought and public policy, as well as other topics in political philosophy. She serves on the editorial boards of The Review of Politics and Polity, and is a past-President of the New England Political Science Association.

A graduate of Cedar Crest College, she earned her M.A. and Ph.D. degrees at The New School for Social Research in New York City.

*02/15/19 Jean Yarbrough, Bowdoin College Bob Martin 2019-02-11 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Alan Nye

President John Curran called the meeting to order by welcoming 53 members and 4 guests. PP Cyrus Hagge (photo at right) gave the invocation which was a New England adaption of the Lord’s Prayer:

Our Brady who art in Foxborough
Hallowed be thy arm
Thy bowl win will come
The game will be won
In New England as it will be in Atlanta.

Give us this Sunday
Our Super Bowl win
And bless us with raining touchdown passes
Gronk’s spikes and glorious high 5’s.

For thine is the MVP
The best in the NFL
And the glory of the Patriots.

We did the Pledge of Allegiance and PP Laura Young led us in singing the Star Spangled Banner.


President John recognized Earle Leavitt for all his contributions to Portland Rotary and welcomed him into the ranks of being an Honorary Member. When asked if he wanted to say a few words, Earle did exactly that by responding with “Thank you.”


Roger Fagan (photo at left) gave a brief recap of his latest 3-H trip (Hearing, Hands and H20) to the Dominican Republic. He noted that 16 people went from Maine, Florida and Alaska and 5 different clubs were represented. Over 100 hearing patients were seen and 148 hearing aids were distributed. 80 water filters and 80 solar lights were installed and 120 patients were seen for prosthetic devices. In over 22 trips to the DR, Roger said that 2275 hearing aids have been fitted. Roger will be a featured speaker in an upcoming meeting to flush out all the details of the most recent trip.


1st VP Amy Chipman (photo at right) discussed the dinner last Saturday at the Italian Heritage Center for the federal employees that were temporarily unemployed due to the government shutdown. Unfortunately only about 20–25 people attended (probably because the shutdown was lifted the day before), but Amy said the event committee raised lots of funds and the event was a success.



Patty Erickson (photo at left) spoke about the Rotary Sweetheart Auction coming up on February 8, 2019 at the Italian Heritage Center and telling us that volunteer sign-ups and auction donation forms were on the tables. If you have any items, please contact PP Loretta ASAP BEFORE THIS FRIDAY AT: lrowe@maine.rr.com.


Charlie Frair (photo at right) did a wrap-up of the funds raised at the Veteran’s lunch in November 2018 and noted that we needed to distribute $5,000. Five groups were nominated by different Rotarians for the funds:

Betsy Ann Ross House of Hope (nominated by Roxane Cole)
Honor Flight (nominated by Bob Trail)
K9’s on the Front Line (nominated by Mike Robinson)
Veterans Count (nominated by Joe Reagan) 
Maine Veterans' Home (nominated by Charlie Frair)

Instead of choosing one group to receive the funds as in previous years, Charlie and the committee decided to give $1,000 to each of the sponsored groups. Great job Charlie and Paul Tully and all who worked on the committee and volunteered. 


Chris Force took care of the weekly raffle and PP Paul T. Gore’s ticket was chosen. Paul magnanimously allowed Roger Fagan to try winning the $227 jackpot, but alas, it was not to be. He drew the Ace of Clubs. 


PP Bill Blount (photo at left) told us of the Club's participation in helping the Deering High School Choral director, Dr. Peter Stickney obtain an electric keyboard for the chorus. Asking for a show of hands of those who could and would like to donate for this cause, Bill encouraged everyone who did raise their hands to contact Elise at 899-6342 or portlandrotary@maine.rr.com


Foundation Chair/PP Dick Hall had the pleasure of announcing that Justin Lamontagne was a Paul Harris Fellow for the second time. Congratulation Justin!

(Photo at right L-R: PP Dick Hall and Justin Lamontagne)

 

 


WCSH reported a story on one of our trained recovery coaches for the Opioid Recognition and Awareness to help break the cycle of addiction. Click on the following link below for more information: 
 

 

02/01/19 Bits & Pieces Alan Nye 2019-02-04 05:00:00Z 0

Our speaker/program this week will be Carolyn Nishon, Executive Director of the Portland Symphony Orchestra (PSO). Carolyn joined the PSO staff in August 2008, after participating in the year-long Orchestra Management Fellowship Program through the League of American Orchestras, where she served as the Orchestra Manager of the Aspen Music Festival Concert Orchestra and worked with symphonies in North Carolina, Spokane, and Baltimore. Carolyn received her bachelor's degree in English and Psychology from the University of Michigan, where she served as the Executive Director of the Michigan Pops Orchestra.

*02/08/19 Carolyn Nishon, PSO 2019-02-04 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Marr

PP Bowen Depke did a fabulous job running through the extensive list of accomplishments of this week’s guest speaker, Don Perkins, President and C.E.O. of the Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI). The Institute, under Mr. Perkins leadership, is a welcome fixture on a tumultuous waterfront. While GMRI is located on Casco Bay, its purview extends far beyond.

Mr. Perkins offered up a balanced report focusing on many of the known influences climate change is making on the coastal biology of Maine, New England, and beyond. Early on in his presentation, Don made it clear that he wasn’t going to be dragged into climate politics and would concentrate on clear changes impacting the lands and seas of the world’s coasts. If you have coastal property you are concerned that statistics indicate that flood potential is adversely impacting values. It is predicted that the sea level will rise 9 feet or more over the century. Think of what Commercial Street will look like! But, it’s much more than property values at risk, it impacts livelihoods even more profoundly. Think about the vanishing fish stock and the affect it has on crews, dock workers, boat builders, mariner mechanics and so on.  Of course, we also must think about what the world would be without a plentiful Maine lobster!

Despite the adversities facing coastal communities and their populace, Don was not delivering a somber message, nor a cautionary tale. He focused on facts, facilities and opportunities to embrace dynamic changes and create a new iteration of the coastal water economy. To be sure, the sea level is rising, and the water temperatures are similarly changing. The Institute has been gathering ocean related data and developing a composite of the life therein. The current picture is worrisome and requires understanding and adaptation in order to improve.  Fortunately, the fishers and fishing industry of Maine have been willing to make changes in order to continue and grow. The bottom line of the fishing industry is staggering....over 1.5 billion dollars a year. The lobstering industry is close to half of that number. The lobster catch has spiked over the past decade, but the future is quite likely to be much different, but not non-existent, according to Perkins.

Nature and mankind have been adapting and reemerging in a similar form for time immemorial.  Don expects that to continue in a favorable manner, despite dramatic challenges. The problem is that the changes are coming fast, and we are on “the bleeding edge.” We must react with alacrity or accept the consequences. Perkins points to the emergence of aquaculture as an immense opportunity, if it’s managed properly. When most people think of aquaculture they think of salmon or maybe, oysters, but it can be much more. An example of potential is the growing of kelp. Kelp grows prolifically in the winter when the fishing industry is in a lull.  Currently, kelp is not a high-dollar business but there are ways to develop a market. If that seems like a pipe dream, Don asked us to consider that salmon are being given a start for life in abandoned paper mills, to wit: Bucksport. While we can be creative and embrace change, Don maintains, we must save the ocean environment.

The statistics related to Don’s fish story can be found on the Gulf of Maine Research Institute website and are worthy of review. In response to the deluge of data and details, Don got some terrific questions during an abbreviated Q & A session. 

For example,
What do we do with the problematic green crab? Not sure it’ll ever become a commercial success, despite Italian cooks, he suggests we compost it. 

Will the venerable Maine tiny shrimp make a comeback or be farmed? Unfortunately, the water change is the death nell for that sumptuous delight, so look to Canada.  

The take away from Don is simple, “we’ve got to stop looking backward and start looking forward.”

(Photo L-R: Don Perkins and member, Jerry Angier.)
 

02/01/19 Don Perkins, Gulf of Maine Research Institute John Marr 2019-02-04 05:00:00Z 0

Everyone’s Phone Number at Your Fingertips . . . and Much More!

Have you done the easy ClubRunner download yet?

How would you like to have not only your own Rotary Club members contact information, but also the entire District at your fingertips? You can and so much more by downloading the new and improved ClubRunner Mobile App. You can also access club and district leadership, stories and events all with just a few clicks. Connecting to them is as easy as clicking on the phone number or email address.

You can download it on the AppStore or GooglePlay and be on your way in minutes. Now would also be a good time to make sure that your profile is current, and if you do not have a picture saved, considering updating your information now!

Reach out and collaborate with other like-minded Rotarians from around our district and be one of the People of Action that your are!

Watch the short video here if you want to check it out before downloading.

- Click to: Download on iTunes App Store (free)

- Click to: Download on Android App Store (free)

 

Rotary Goes Mobile 2019-02-02 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Dick Hall

Chief Bob MacKenzie started by giving kudos to Portland Rotary for all the work we are doing with our awareness training and the recovery coach training.  He then gave us an update:

• The District 7780 committee meets monthly and all are invited to attend. The committee last met 1/24/19. Reducing stigma really makes a difference, and this is the #1 goal of the committee. The committee is always looking for ideas.

• New Hampshire Rotarians will be starting substance use disorder awareness and naloxone administration training soon.

• Through a Rotary Club, the District now has an account so it can accept donations to be used for the work.

• Last August, the Kennebunk “Above Board” group had a fundraiser to benefit substance use disorder. After the first 125 $25 tickets sold out, they expanded the event to 180 people. At the event a live ask netted $21,000, with a total of $55,000 from the event. The event will be August 23rd this year.

• Some proceeds will be used for more recovery coach training. A training was created to teach emergency responders to use the techniques from the coach training, primarily to treat everyone with respect. 25 first responders will be trained 1/28/19.

• From the results of this training a 2-hr training will be created and be added to this years mandatory training for all ME police officers.

• The Governor is very supportive of substance use disorder. Other groups such as Pine State Association and the National Education Association are developing training for all their members.  

• AmeriCorps will be providing a person, to work with the Kennebunk Police and Rotary to support the opioid epidemic efforts shortly.

Q&A

What is happening with the pushers? ME Drug Enforcement is very active. There continue to be more drug dogs. Laws are being adjusted to focus on dealers not users.

What is the status of treatment beds? We are gaining ground with new beds being added in many parts of the state. Pine Tree Recovery Center and a Saco outpatient facility recently opened. We still need more but now are able to find a place for all who want treatment, even if they have to go out of state.

Where is the product coming from? Phentenol, the most addictive drug, is primarily coming from China.

What about the doctors who are pushing drugs? The chief said he heard there was a class action lawsuit to force drug makers to pay for the effect of their drugs, similar to the tobacco lawsuit.

How does legalization of marijuana affect things? The chief was not a supporter of legalization. He says that he has heard many times that marijuana was the first drug to be used. His daughter started with marijuana, and got hooked on opioids. She went through treatment and seemed to be doing better, but Thursday night she was arrested for dealing phentenol.

Which drug cause most overdoses? Phentenol by a wide margin. It is so strong and works so fast that it catches people by surprise. Often, when Narcan (naloxone) is not immediately available, it is fatal.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Photo L-R:  1st VP Amy Chipman, Chief Bob MacKenzie and Matt Wolcott.)

 

 

 

 

(Photo L-R: the Club's Opioid Task Force - back row: Bruce Moore, Tom Ranello, Chief Bob MacKenzie, Jesse Harvey; front row - Jan Chapman, Gracie Johnston, Doreen Rockstrom and Megan Peabody.)
 

01/25/19 Chief Bob MacKenzie, Opioid Program Update Dick Hall 2019-01-29 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Marr

As the New England Patriots prepare for the Super Bowl, our club showed that we are in sync. President John Curran was in the DR with our 3H team, affording the first occasion of our 1st VP President Amy Chipman to take charge of the weekly meeting. She got the house in order, despite the bell being MIA. In standard tradition she commenced with a moment of inspiration/invocation.

Leave it to Charlie Frair to find a way to co-join the spirit and guidance of the venerable Doctor Martin Luther King and the moral fabric of the Rotary Creed. Charlie brought together the history, poetry and majesty of the voice of M.L.K. and the words and deeds of Rotary International.

1st VP Amy asked Paul T. Gore to sing forth without any instrumental accompaniment. P.T.G. summoned his immense pride, energy, and sincerity and led us in a grand performance of “God Bless America,” then Matt Wolcott led us in our “Pledge of Allegiance.


Our current 7780 District Governor, John LoBosco was recently diagnosed with a life threatening affliction which requires surgical intervention, to provide repair and recovery. The condition is of significant debilitation to require that John stay off his feet and utilize a wheel chair. Regardless of the limitations, the evening prior John tended to the duties of introducing the latest effort of the District to get out the message of opiate recovery to those seeking training in identification of the warning signs of an overdose and how to administer the life-saving medicine, Narcan (naloxone).  A card was signed and being sent to John, from his Portland Rotary friends, to buoy his spirits as he prepares for the procedure. We ask that all keep John in their thoughts and prayers.


PP Bill Blount, (photo at left with 1st VP Amy) obviously, enjoys breaking out in song even when he has to drag us who were born off-key along. There was hope that the new piano would be available but, alas, that’s to come soon. If you don’t have a piano, but you have passion and talent, you improvise when you can. Bill figured that everyone knew the words to “Oh, Suzanna” and needed little help, but he still needed to secure his spectacles in order to assure perfection of his rendition of Steven Foster’s 1848 song of longing love. He made it all the easier for us by first belting out the tune on his harmonica, helping us to get into tune, in the key of whatever may be.


Once a Rotarian, always a Rotarian, is the way to be and Mark Rajotte proved the point. Recognizing the plight of workers going without a government paycheck for the work they were doing, Mark knew that something must be done to lessen the sting, so he reached out to “ever ready” Mike Fortunato and suggested that the Rotary Club of Portland sponsor a dinner to help our friends in need. In just a little more than one week, the Mark and Mike (photo at right) duo pulled together a ziti luncheon at the Italian Heritage Center (one of the sponsors). Mark and PP Roxane Cole reached out to Hannaford and asked if they could help and got a contribution of $2,500 in gift cards, along with a $1,000 donation from the Cape Eliz-SoPo Rotary Club, as well as many donations from club members.  


The weekly raffle got off to a new deck this week, since Linda Varrell pulled the Queen of Hearts from the pack last week, only to donate the money back to the club. With Mike Fortunato conducting the raffle, this week Julie L’Heureux got a chance to find the queen in the new deck of 52, but decided to let the lady rest and the pot to grow by plucking the 5 of spades.


2nd VP Ellen Niewoehner (photo at right) and PP Loretta Rowe are coordinating the “Sweetheart Auction,” which will be held on February 8th at the Italian Heritage Center. Many items are needed and any assistance you can offer, running for gifts or setting up and delivering, will be appreciated. If you can be at the IHC at 10 AM that would be perfect. Bottom line, help is desperately needed, so just get there and give a hand. (See separate article this issue.)


Charlie Frair returned to the podium to remind us that we had a phenomenal Veteran’s Appreciation luncheon event and raised some significant funds to distribute to veteran related organizations. At this time there are two organizations in the running, but time is still available for others to solicit support from the club. If you know of a veterans organization that has a worthy outreach project, please, invite them to make application. Contact Charlie Frair or Paul Tully for additional details.


Ben Millick (photo at left) is teaming up with Green House to facilitate a program to help the newest, non-native, members of the Greater Portland community.  Many of the immigrants, similar to our forebearers, come with talent, energy and ideas looking to be part of the greatness of America.  They are often stymied by procedures, language barriers, and business basics as they try to bring dreams to reality. Ben and the group will offer 6 months of training and assistance through mentorships and instructions to our new neighbors. Contact Ben at: bmillick@clarkinsurance.com if you are willing to mentor or sponsor a core business presentation.


PP Roxane Cole is now a PHF x 6, while Mike Reed is a PHF x 7, as well as member of the the founders club donating $1000 a year to the Foundation. It was the honor of our District Governor Nominee to District 7780, PP Dick Hall, to introduce these newest awards to these most-worthy recipients. (Photo at right L-R: PP/DGN Dick Hall, Mike Reed and PP Roxane Cole.)


Gracie Johnston is doing a terrific job as our Community Service Chair and that is especially obvious when we help the needful who come to the Preble Street Food Kitchen for dinner. Gracie, along with Jesse Harvey, (photo at left) spoke of the latest dinner when we were able to offer fresh fruit as part of the meal. This is just another example of little things making a big difference in the lives of those unfortunate who experience food insecurity.
 

01/25/19 Bits & Pieces John Marr 2019-01-29 05:00:00Z 0

Don Perkins has served as the President/CEO for the Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI) since 1995. Don works with GMRI's staff, board, and external partners to drive GMRI's evolution as a strategic science, education, and community institution that serves the Gulf of Maine bioregion and to scale GMRI's impact beyond. Since 2013, Don has served as the Executive Director of the Harte Charitable Foundation developing their investments in the stewardship and sustainable development of the Gulf of Mexico. Don is dedicated to building creative, strategic organizations, traditional or virtual, that contribute to solving intractable problems and creating new opportunities in marine conservation, STEM literacy, and common property governance and management.

Don is active in the marine policy arena on multiple levels. He currently serves on the board of the Gulf of Maine Lobster Foundation and recently co-chaired the Governors Ocean Energy Task Force. He was co-founder of Friends of Casco Bay and the Maine Marine Research Coalition. He previously served on the boards of the Gulf of Maine Council on the Marine Environment, Gulf of Maine Ocean Observing System, Maine Department of Marine Resources Advisory Council, and Maine Legislature’s Task Force on the Development of Aquaculture. Reflecting his broader interest in governance, Don currently serves on the board of MMG Insurance.

Don brings an unusual mix of corporate and non-profit experience to GMRI. Prior to joining GMRI, Don instructed at the Hurricane Island Outward Bound School, directed the Marine Conservation Corps in California, served as a financial advisor to Native American tribes, advised The Health Foundation on its Latin American initiatives, and managed the operations of Binax, Inc., which provided diagnostic tests and tools for infectious diseases.

Don was born in Waterville, Maine and has lived in a variety of Maine's coastal and inland communities, as well as overseas in Israel and Brazil. Don holds a B.A. in Anthropology from Dartmouth College and a M.B.A. from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business. Don’s greatest sources of pleasure are his family, sailing along the coast of Maine, and an early morning run or swim.
 

*02/01/19 Don Perkins, Gulf of Maine Research Institute Matt Wolcott 2019-01-29 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Bob MacKenzie is a 30-year veteran of law enforcement, currently serving as Chief of Police with the Kennebunk Police Department. Chief MacKenzie began his law enforcement career in 1988 with them and rose through the ranks, being promoted to Chief of Police in 2008.

Chief MacKenzie is a graduate of the 243rd FBI National Academy in Quantico, VA, and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice through Husson University. He is the producer of the “Point of No Return,” a 30-minute movie which depicts the consequences of underage drinking and has been shown in 34 states. Chief MacKenzie is a Past-President of the Kennebunk Rotary Club, in which he has served for the past eleven years and is the Chair of the Rotary District 7780 Recovery Initiative.

The Chief will be making a return visit to the Portland Club to report on a broader effort with clubs across Southern Maine to tackle opioid addiction and offer ideas on how Rotary can be part of the solution.
 

*01/25/19 Chief Robert MacKenzie,  Update on Programs for Opioid Users Bob Martin 2019-01-25 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Julie L'Heureux

Dr. Susan Miesfeldt  first went to Africa with her daughter to volunteer in an orphanage. While there, through American Cancer Society connections, she established links with a number of cancer care providers throughout Tanzania. Her connections there have grown since that first trip. 

She presented an overview about her dedication to helping the efforts of the Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Center (KCMC) and the Foundation for Cancer Care in Tanzania and included information about the barriers to cancer care provided by KCMC, the development efforts to solicit support for the program and the Rotary partnership to construct the KCMC Family Village.

In Tanzania, at least 35,000 new patients are diagnosed with cancer each year and, sadly, about 80 percent will die due to limited access to care. Cancer incidence is predicted to increase by 70% in the next 2 decades. Deterrents to receiving treatments are caused by the distance patients must travel to reach the cancer care centers and the high cost of transportation and housing.

To improve the situation for patients who need access to care, the Foundation for Cancer Care in Tanzania has a vision to partner with regional and international partners for the purpose of building a comprehensive and sustainable cancer care system in the Northern Zone of Tanzania focused on (a) lowering cancer incidence (b) reducing cancer mortality and (c) improving the quality of life.

Background information about the KCMC, located at the base of Mount Kilimanjaro, is that it was founded in 1971 by the Good Samaritan Foundation. The major referral hospital for a population covering over 15 million people in the Northern Zone of Tanzania. Although it is a large and growing complex, the hospital currently has 630 beds and 40 baby incubators. For education, the KCMC supports 1852 students, 1300 staff and 1000 visitors daily. It’s a world-class center for patient care, teaching and research.

Dr. Miesfeldt described the three phases of the cancer care facility: (a) an infusion center (b) an in-patient cancer center and (c) a Family Village.

A Family Village assessment demonstrated the need by evaluating the cost, distance and lack of transportation/housing as being documented barriers to cancer care in Tanzania. Studies show that at least 40% of children abandon their cancer treatment. There is a need to address these treatment barriers.

(Photo L-R: President John Curran, PDG Carolyn Johnson and Dr. Sue Miesfeldt.)
 

01/18/19 Dr Sue Miesfeldt, MMC Oncology & Int'l Care in Africa Julie L'Heureux 2019-01-22 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Tom Talbott

President John Curran opened the meeting by welcoming 49 members, 2 visiting Rotarians and 4 guests. He invited PP Russ Burleigh to provide us with the Invocation. With the Super Bowl on the horizon, Russ gave us a history of the event. The first two years, 1967-68, the game was called the AFL-NFL Championship. In 1969 it took on the name Super Bowl, and it was a landmark game. The underdog NY Jets came out on top of the Baltimore Colts, backed by the words of Jets QB Joe Namath, who had guaranteed victory.  The Pledge of Allegiance was followed by Gracie Johnston leading the way on the singing of ‘God Bless America.’  


PP Laura Young (photo at right) reported on the “New Members Meeting” held on Jan 11. This was a chance to hear from new members on how they were acclimating to the club. Good news is that all noted that they felt very welcomed, and that so far, Rotary was proving to be more than they had expected – in a good way. Lot of appreciation for our strong speakers program. There is still some nervousness just before the weekly meeting when they first arrive...... in a roomful of new people, wondering where to sit, etc. So a reminder for all of us to reach out to invite a new member to sit with you for lunch, and get a chance to know them better.


President John welcomed Tim Cronin (photo at left), Coordinator, and Nanette Dyer Blake (photo at right), Community Outreach and Development Specialist from the Portland Public Schools “Make It Happen!” (MIH!) program to speak with us. MIH Is an academic and college readiness program, designed to help multilingual students in grades 9-12 create stronger academic profiles, that improves their ability to be accepted into college and getting financial aid. The program challenges the students to take more challenging classes, be involved in the community, to find jobs and other roles that improve their personal and professional development. Coordinators work with students to improve standardized test scores, and writing competitive college applications. MIH! Is always looking for adult volunteers who can be an academic coach, working to help the students in a wide variety of ways. Volunteers would commit to 1-2 hours per week per semester. Interested? Reach out to Nanette at 842-4657, blaken@portlandschools.org.


Paul Tully reported that we have $5,000 from the Veterans' Lunch to provide to Veterans support groups, but no specific requests have been made to date. If you have a suggestion, please contact Charie Frair: cfrair47@yahoo.com.


Mike Fortunato teamed up with past Portland Rotarian Mark Rajotte, who put together an idea to have a pasta dinner to support federal employees who have been affected by the government shutdown. Members of the Coast Guard, TSA, DEA (and others) would be served at the Italian Heritage Center (IHC) in Portland, Saturday Jan 26th, 3-5pm. No speeches, nothing political, just a way of saying we appreciate you and you are not forgotten during this crisis. This is coming together quickly. We will need your help hosting these families at the dinner. 

Donations to help fund food gift cards are needed. The IHC is also involved and will have their members participating. We had a show of many hands for donating $50, so please, if you volunteered to do this, please send it in! You can send a check made out to the Rotary Club of Portland and give the check to Elise or mail to: P.O. Box 1755, Portland, ME 04104.  


Mike Fortunato and PP Kris Rosado (photo at left) jointly announced a planning meeting for the Maine Outdoor Challenge (MOC) – Tuesday Jan 29, noon, at the Portland Boys and Girls Club. Lunch will be served. Fact – the MOC is our major fundraiser, netting the club north of $25k annually. Kris and Mike have been at the forefront on making this event happen for a long time, and have more than earned the right to ask others to step into their leadership-sized shoes.  Seize the day!  Also, Kris noted that now is the time to be reaching out to businesses for sponsorships for the 2019 MOC. No need to wait for Kris to ask you – just go make it happen!   Yes – info sheets will be coming so you have the materials. Same goes for teams – we need more. Capacity is 45 – last year we had 40. It’s all profit at that point, so let’s not leave money on the table. LL Bean charges us for 45! 


Community Service Chair, Gracie Johnston (photo at right) had two reminders: First, volunteers are needed at Preble Street on Wednesday, Jan 23rd, 3:30pm. Be sure you sign in when you arrive; second, on Thursday, Jan 24th at 6:00 pm, our Rotary Club will host “How To Recognize and Respond to an Opiod/Heroin Overdose” at the Dana Center, part of Maine Med at 22 Bramhall Street. Seating is limited, so register at portlandrotary.com ASAP or contact Jan Chapman: janchapman1966@gmail.com or call 408-582. (Parking is available on Bramhall Street or in the Maine Medical parking lot on Chadwick Street.)


1st VP Ellen Niewoehner touted the upcoming Sweetheart Auction to be held at our Feb 8th meeting at the Italian Heritage Center. We need items! Did you get something recently that doesn’t do it for you, but might be treasure to someone else? Donate it! It’s fun! Forms are available, so get them in soon.

WE NEED SOME BIG-TICKET ITEMS, also for a live auction! Email Loretta at lrowe@maine.rr.com with your donation items ASAP and she will complete the donor form for you. (Again....see separate article this issue about the auction.) Please let us know ahead of time if and what you plan to donate, so we can prepare the necessary paperwork. Please don't walk into the meeting on Feb. 8th bringing a donation. It creates unneeded chaos.  


Need some luck? Talk to Linda Varrell! (Photo at left: Linda and Jerry Angier) Normally we get down to 10 or fewer cards in our weekly raffle before someone wins, but Linda deftly pulled the Queen of Hearts from almost the full deck to take down the prize of $326. Linda kindly donated that back to the club. Thank you, Linda.
 

01/25/19 Bits & Pieces Tom Talbott 2019-01-20 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jake Bourdeau

Kicking off the meeting, President John Curran welcomed 52 members, 1 guest and 1 visiting Rotarian. Gracie Johnston gave an impromptu invocation that was spot on. Mike Fortunato led the Pledge of Allegiance, and 1st VP Amy Chipman led us in the patriotic song, “America.”  

President John presented the Rotarian Birthdays and Anniversaries: one highlight called out was a Rotarian who has been a member for 52 years, Mark Stimson. Congratulations!! 


Visiting PDG Carolyn Johnson (photo at left) presented information on Learning Works, which is a non-profit group that helps new Mainers with learning the English language and other helpful life skills. President John and Gracie Johnston recently visited Learning Works, and learned how Rotarians can volunteer to help as tutors, offering 1.5 hours per week. Learning Works holds formal English language classes several time per week, and volunteers can provide short presentations on topics such as finding jobs, signing up for health insurance, figuring out how to enroll a child in school, etc. PDG Carolyn said that people with expertise on specific subjects could really help the people learn about various life skills while learning how to better communicate in English. If you are interested in these volunteer opportunities, please reach out to Gracie Johnston at: gracie.johnston@newscentermaine.com



PP Loretta Rowe (photo at right) presented information on the upcoming “Sweetheart Auction,” which will be held on February 8th at the Italian Heritage Center. Loretta asks that you donate gift-worthy items, or useful services, and that you submit the DONATION FORMS in advance of the Auction/meeting, as this will help make the Auction run more smoothly. Please bring items and/or a completed donation form to a Rotary meeting before the event, and/or email Loretta with the information. (See separate article in this issue for ideas.) Please do not hesitate to contact Loretta with the donations at 883-5432 or lrowe@maine.rr.com.


Charlie Frair (photo at left) noted that one of the fun parts of being part of the Veterans' Committee is the Veterans’ luncheon. This year the luncheon’s fund raising efforts doubled the previous annual fundraising effort. Charlie is looking to streamline the donation recipient process, and is requesting members submit a brief write-up of what an eligible veteran-based group does to support veteran services to be considered as a recipient for some of the proceeds from the luncheon. Club members will read the write-ups and vote on them at an upcoming meeting. Ballots will be available in mid-February with the selection occurring in March. If you are interested in providing information on a particular group for the ballot, please contact Charlie Frair: cfrair47@yahoo.com


Gracie Johnston (photo at right) noted that help is needed for preparing and serving dinner at the Preble Street Resource Center on January 23rd. Six members have already signed up, but we could use a few more. Please contact her if you can make it.: gracie.johnston@newscentermaine.com


Joe Reagan noted that volunteers may be needed for a Point in Time survey, which is completed to survey homeless people identified in our community. Gracie let us know that more information on this topic will be provided on the Rotary website. 


Gracie also reminded us of an important training event “Recognizing and Responding to an Opiate/Heroin Overdose” for All District 7780 Rotarians and guests about recognizing and responding to an Opiate/Heroin Overdose. It will be held on Thursday, January 24, 2019 (snow date on February 21, 2019) from 6-7:30 pm in the Maine Medical Center Dana Auditorium, 22 Bramhall Street, in Portland.  (Parking is available on Bramhall Street or in the Maine Medical parking lot on Chadwick Street.) Space is limited to the first 100 people who register....Please RSVP by email to portlandrotary@maine.rr.com    FMI contact Kennebunk Police Chief Bob MacKenzie: rmackenzie@kennebunkmaine.us or call 207-604-1339.


2nd VP Ellen Niewoehner shared information that on Thursday, January 24th, the Rotary ski group is planning to meet at the Gray Park and Ride at 9:00 am, and carpool to the South Ridge at Sunday River. Anyone interested, please contact Ellen at: eniewoehner@banksis.com.  


Ellen then requested our speaker to pick a raffle ticket from the can for the weekly drawing. Bruce Nelson's name was selected, who picked the 4 of clubs out of the deck. The pot continues to grow, as the Queen of Hearts continues to hide in the remaining cards.   

(Photo above at left: Bruce Nelson and 2nd VP Ellen Niewoehner.)


1st VP Amy Chipman, PP Bill Blount and Gracie Johnston from the Music Committee led us in song. It was a bright and cheerful Rotary moment.

(Photo at right above – L-R: 1st VP Amy Chipman, PP Bill Blount and Gracie Johnston.)

 

01/11/19 Bits & Pieces Jake Bourdeau 2019-01-14 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Kay Aikin, Chief Executive Officer of Introspective Systems, joined us to talk about the state of entrepreneurship in Maine. Aikin pointed to a number of statistics to demonstrate her point that “tech-based startups support U.S. economic growth.”

Using her own company as an example, Aikin said that tech companies pay twice the national average in salaries and have a jobs multiplier of five. “Policy makers should focus on spurring high-growth technology-based startups,” she said.

But as she noted, the challenge for Maine is that the state ranks 37th in the country for tech-based jobs. New Hampshire sits at the number one position, with Massachusetts at number two. While the state has strong assets in the Maine Technology Institute, mentors, and Maine Angels, access to capital, a strong educational base, and venture capital backed accelerators are additional components for success that are lacking in Maine, but prevalent elsewhere. Pointing to the success of Vets First Choice, a startup backed by David Shaw that recently went public, Aikin said that there was no reason that Maine could not become more of a “startup state” to take advantage of its quality of life.

Aikin reviewed the high technology aspects of Introspective’s software platform and the sophisticated array of products it offers. “We solve the hardest enterprise problems by combining complexity and artificial intelligence,” she said. Introspective Systems was awarded a several million dollar grant to help the Department of Energy with its “Internet of Things” (IoT) software which is being used to develop a microgrid to manage energy. Isle au Haut has become a laboratory for Introspective where the company is using its fractal control software to create a microgrid that will help the island produce and store its own electrical energy using supercapacitor batteries. The project is designed to replace an aging cable system that is very expensive to operate and replace. The Introspective project will make the island’s electricity 45 percent less expensive. Had Isle au Haut not elected to work with Introspective, they faced a $1.5 million cost to replace their electrical cable which would have increased their electricity cost to 80 cents per kilowatt. With the new system, which includes renewable energy, the island can eventually reduce its costs to ten cents per kilowatt.


 

(Photo L-R: Justin Lamontagne, Kay Aikin and President John Curran.)

01/11/19 Kay Aikin, Introspective Systems Bob Martin 2019-01-13 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Curran

Dr. Susan Miesfeldt is a medical oncologist and Medical Director for the Cancer Risk and Prevention Program at MMC. She received her MD from Tufts University School of Medicine and completed residency and fellowship training at the University of Virginia and University of Michigan Schools of Medicine.

Her research focuses on cancer prevention and early detection, as well as access to care. She has received research support from the NCI, Maine Health and Human Services, MaineCancer Foundation, and the Susan G. Komen Foundation, and served as Principal Investigator for the NCI Community Cancer Centers Program (NCCCP). She has participated in several state task forces and work groups related to cancer screening and prevention, and is presently serving on the State of Maine Commission to Study Incidence of and Mortality Related to Cancer.

Dr. Miesfeldt is a member of the American Cancer Society’s Board of Directors, New England Division, as well as the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s International Affairs Committee.
 

*01/18/19 Dr. Sue Miesfeldt, MMC - Cancer Care & Int'l Service in Africa John Curran 2019-01-13 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Our January 4 meeting was a Club Assembly, dedicated to bringing everyone up-to-date with the extraordinary accomplishments of the Club, and introducing two new members.


Three guests joined the 51 club members for lunch: Richard L’Heureux, spouse of Juliana L’Heureux; Eduardo Oliveira (photo at left L-R: President John Curran and Eduardo Oliveira), a member of the Novo Hamburgo Rotaract Club in Brazil who is currently an intern at CIEE International headquarters in Portland; and, Dean Rock, a resident of Cumberland who is the provider of the 3H team’s prosthetic hands.

 


With Peter Moore conducting the weekly raffle, Jerry Angier had the opportunity to take home the raffle pot, but drew the wrong card.


President John thanked the members of the committees that serve to put on the meetings—Meeting Day, Program, Windjammer, and Public Relations. He also gave a special salute to the team who sponsored and managed the Veterans Appreciation Luncheon back on November 9, 2018.


President John shared the Treasurer’s Report, copies of which were distributed to the members, and highlighted the balanced budget for 2019 was possible due to an increase in dues. He also mentioned the difficulties the club had faced with not being able to meet the catering minimums imposed by the Holiday Inn and the Clarion earlier in the year. Our shift from the Holiday Inn and the negotiation of lower luncheon minimums helped keep our loss in this category from being higher. Projections show that the Club should break even at the end of the 2018-2019 fiscal year. 


PP Dick Hall, chair of the Rotary Foundation Committee, reported that the Club was on track to meet the goals of contributions of $17,000 to RI Foundation, and $15,000 to Polio Plus. He stated that 62 members of the Club had not made a pledge or contributed to the Foundation this year and he has sent an email encouraging them to participate.


The Club’s International Service Committee work was reported by four of its members:

Roger Fagan shared the progress of the Hearing division of the 3H (Hearing, Hands and H2O) Project and plans for its next trip to the Dominican Republic (DR), noting that several other clubs, including one from Alaska, will be joining in this project. He received a request for help from our partners in the Dominican Republic to help with one young girl who had a special hearing issue. Roger was able to diagnose her need, provide a hearing aid, and coach the caregivers in the DR on how to install the device so that she would not have to wait until the team arrived in their country to help her. 

Liz Fagan reported on the continuing progress of the hearing team’s work in Kosovo and announced that the Wakefield, Rhode Island Rotary Club would be managing this geography of the project this year. Liz has also recruited 12 audiologists and speech pathologists to visit Kosovo to work with the students and also gathered books and therapy materials. She was invited to make a presentation in Kosovo, but opted instead to gather the research data and shared it with the students she worked with last year so they could make the presentation instead. She called that a great learning experience for them.

David Small provided a presentation of pictures showing what life was like in the Dominican Republic bateyes, which are largely populated by Haitian immigrants, to demonstrate the impact of the water portion of the 3H project. Bateyes are the employer-owned villages of dwellings provided to the workers in the sugar cane fields, which are typically constructed of wood or cinderblock and have no electricity or water. While rain water is collected in barrels, there is no potable water provided in the homes. Workers cut a ton of sugar cane by hand per day with machetes, for which they receive $5.00. The bateyes have a church, school, and a commissary and there are water monitors who help teach people how to treat the water to make it safe since there are issues with intestinal diseases. Consequently, the water filters provided by the 3H team have become extremely sought-after since they considerably improve the resident’s quality of life. The 3H team will be providing a new design of filter this year, a six-piece plastic system that will be easier to install and maintain. David said that the 3H team decided to adopt a batey for concentrated work over time rather than spread a few installations over more areas. They will return to Batey 50 for the third year with lights, filters, school supplies, and will also work to install a large-scale system. “Thousands of people have been affected by our work,” David reported as he encouraged more Rotarians to participate. People are especially grateful to receive solar lights.

President John reported on the Hands portion, recognizing the work of Dean Rock who was present. John said that this year the team would be working with Centro de Protesis and Terapia Fisica instead of the hospital. This NGO has a dedicated staff, some of whom use artificial limbs. Dean Rock passed around an electronic version of his 3D device, which will be installed for the first time on the next trip. The team will travel out of Santo Domingo to Puerto Plata on the northern coast.


President John reported on the progress of the New Mainer Task Force, led by Max Chikuta, which has been working to find areas of potential collaboration with a number of organizations that have evolved to address issues affecting these people. The group reports that the biggest challenges are in the areas of mentoring and vocational guidance and will be working with “Make It Happen,” Learning Works, and the Immigrant Welcome Center, which is focusing particularly on entrepreneurial support. The group is also working to add a New Mainer Award that will provide a scholarship from Rotary at the University of Southern Maine. In addition, the task force is working in collaboration with the Music Committee to find funds to help the Deering High School Choral Group secure a new keyboard.


Gracie Johnston (photo at right) shared news from the Community Service Committee, noting that “community service is the life blood of our club.” She highlighted the club’s work with Preble Street (last Wednesday of every month); Thanksgiving dinner at St. Vincent de Paul where 110 meals were served this year; bell ringing to support the Salvation Army Christmas campaign; Thanksgiving dinner this year at the Portland Recovery Community Center; Maine Inside Out, the organization helping folks move from incarceration back into the community;  and Journey House Sober Living, which is part of the Opioid Recovery Task Force effort that includes Recovery Coach support and training in the use of Naloxone. Gracie reported that thanks to the effort led by Doreen Rockstrom, the club was able to secure 100 units of Naloxone at no cost. This amount would have cost $40,000, if obtained through purchase.


The work of the Youth Service Committee was reported by Jan Chapman (photo at left) who related the efforts with the Lyseth School Reading project, in partnership with Maine Law, where students in kindergarten through third grade are read to by volunteers and leave their session with a new book. The Committee also supports the Rotary Youth Leadership Award, which sends high school students to Camp Hines for leadership training. The goal is to send ten students this year. Other projects include a mentoring program at Portland High School and Deering High School, and the Rotary Youth Exchange that gives students in Portland schools, age 15 to 18, a chance to travel abroad.

Jan also presented information for the flyers distributed on each table describing “A Call to Action” for All District 7780 Rotarians and guests about recognizing and responding to Opiate/Heroin Overdose. The educational program will be held on Thursday, January 24, 2019 (snow date on February 21, 2019) from 6-7:30 pm in the Maine Medical Center Dana Auditorium, 22 Bramhall Street, in Portland.  (Parking is available on Bramhall Street or in the Maine Medical parking lot on Chadwick Street.) RSVP to Kennebunk Police Chief Bob MacKenzie: rmackenzie@kennebunkmaine.us or call 207-604-1339.


PP Laura Young highlighted the work of the Membership Committee by inviting two sponsors, 1st VP Ellen Niewoehner and Tom Ranello, to introduce new members. Ellen introduced Mike Anderson, a ten-year veteran broker with Malone Commercial Brokers who lives in Gorham; and, Tom introduced Michelle DiSotto of Scarborough, who works with Goodwill Industries. Please be sure to welcome both new members to our club.


(Photo L-R: PP Laura Young, 1st VP Ellen Niewoehner, Mike Anderson, Michelle DiSotto, Tom Ranello and President John Curran.)
 

01/04/19 Portland Rotary Club Assembly Bob Martin 2019-01-07 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Justin Lamontagne

Kay Aikin graduated from Pennsylvania State University with one of the first sustainability engineering degrees in the country. She has spent her career as an energy engineer, architectural designer, and business development executive. Kay’s expertise involves reconciling diverse needs requirements, engineering feasibility, and budgetary limitations to ensure that every project is both cost-effective and sustainable. She has spent the last 4 years with her Introspective Systems co-founder Dr. Caryl Johnson studying the application of complex system design in relation to the integration of Distributed Energy Resources into the electrical grid. Kay’s engineering focus has been on electrical grid and Iot applications for xGraph as an expansion of her experience in sustainable technologies. She helped design the xGraph computing platform as the first Autonomic Computing System used to distribute intelligence to the edge of the Internet of Things. 

Before Introspective Systems she had 25 years as an owner and executive in the construction industry, running design/build construction companies, managing multi-million dollar sales forces, and consulting on business and market development issues. She has also given back to the industry by working as a Regional Vice President of the Pennsylvania Home Builders Association, helping to shape responses to industry and community concerns. As a sales manager for Shulte Homes, a large nation-wide modular homebuilder, she helped spearhead the move from small starter homes to larger custom homes.
 

*01/11/19 Kay Aikin, Introspective Systems Justin Lamontagne 2019-01-07 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Curran

Please join us this Friday for an action-packed and engaging Club Assembly at the Clarion Hotel. It will include updates on our many service activities, an overview of our club’s financial health, a report on Membership, and a look back at our collective accomplishments & highlights during the first half of this Rotary Year.

Please invite a potential new member to join you, as this is a perfect opportunity to learn more about our active club.

*01/04/19 Portland Rotary Club Assembly John Curran 2019-01-04 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Marr

All Rotarians are well aware of the 4-Way Test, but few really know where it came from. Thanks to an invocation/inspiration provided by PP Tom Talbott, (photo at right) who researched the origin of our guiding principal. We now know the rest of the story. Truth be told, the genesis of the 4-Way Test preceded the Rotary, but was developed in Chicago. In 1893, Herbert Taylor, a native of Norway who made his way to Chicago and found fortune by being the quintessentially honest business person, emblematic of Rotary, developed the essence of the 4-Way Test in order to guide his business dealings. Taylor began his career in the tea business, but moved on to fame and fortune with Club Aluminum, hawking cookware of superb quality. However, in the course of marketing the product, he insisted that every word be without exaggeration and distilled a 7-operative guidance down to the 24 words we know as the 4-Way Test. The test was not immediately embraced by Rotary; it took years and in 1942 it was adopted by Rotary and became our core principal. Taylor went on to become President of Rotary International in 1954 and his 24 iconic words live on in the heart of every Rotarian around the world.


We had two visiting guests at this meeting, which was immediately preceding the Christmas holiday. Michelle DiSotto (Goodwill NNE) has submitted her application to join our Club and will soon be formally brought in. Not too soon thereafter, we will be introduced to Bonnie Guerrette (more to follow).


President John had a full agenda to follow, but one of his objectives was to inform us of the hard work the Nominating Committee has been doing to bring us the new slate of officers and Board of Directors for the coming Rotary year.  

Chairing the Nominating Committee, Immediate Past President Don Zillman, gathered a strong committee who helped nominate the slate of officers for 2019-20, as follows: 

President: Amy Chipman
1st Vice President: Ellen Niewoehner
Second Vive President: Bob Martin
Two Board Directors: Gracie Johnston and Mike Fortunato
Secretary:  Bruce Moore
Treasurer:  Scott Blakeslee
Sergeant-at-Arm:  Dave Putnam

The slate, including past members completing terms and those nominated, was unanimously approved by the members.

 

 

 

 


(Photo L-R: Dave Putnam, Mike Fortunato, Bruce Moore, Bob Martin, Ellen Niewoehner and Amy Chipman. Missing: Gracie Johnston and Scott Blakeslee.)


President John thought it appropriate to highlight the Vocational Service Committee work and asked a committee member to bring forth their message:

Bob Fowler (photo at right), is the Executive Director of Milestone of Greater Portland serving the homeless and substance dependent community within our borders. Milestone has been serving the Portland community since 1957 at the India Street home, making it the longest standing facility in the City serving this needy citizenry. The India St. facility has 41 beds to assist with 3-7 day detox and prep programs for those trying to recover. They have a satellite facility in Old Orchard Beach. Bob got his Master’s Degree in Social Welfare, but realized that his job at Milestone required more business management than he realized, so he went back to school and got another Masters in Business and Public Policy. He has honed his skills and is focusing them on making Milestone the premier recovery facility in the state. Bob envisions Rotary and Milestone as a perfect intersection of interest.


Prospective member Bonnie Guerette (photo at left) came before the Club to give us a glimpse into her past life as a substance abuser; it was a hard hitting eye-opener. It’s difficult for most of us to imagine how hard life can be when you spend about 4 decades trying to break away. Suffice it to say that Bonnie’s childhood was somewhere on the spectrum of hard to horrible. She grew up in Connecticut and that’s where the horrors began. She went on to get a degree in nursing and was thought to be a solid citizen, but she had a secret life that she lived as a user of cocaine and heroin, in an attempt to suppress the horrors of her childhood. Over time, Bonnie found her way to Maine as an attempt to escape, but fell in with the wrong crowd. She got involved in a gang which resulted in Federal charges and prison time, but brought the thread of recovery she is now holding onto. She is giving back to the community by taking her experiences to help the drug-addicted street people we have in the City. Bonnie has taken the Naloxone course and is helping to educate more of us to help save lives. Bonnie wants to go on and create a “Safe House” for women in Portland and we are ready to lend our support to help this obvious area of need.


2nd VP Ellen Niewoehner and PP Loretta Rowe have taken on the task of fundraising and decided to resurrect the “Sweetheart Auction,” aka, not too long ago, as the Re-gifting Auction, where you can find a good home for that Christmas gift that just wasn’t as perfect for you as someone had thought! If you have a new or gently-used item you want to donate for auction, please get in touch with Ellen or Loretta and make our auction a financial success. The funds raised will go toward covering the ever-growing operating cost of the Club. Please bring as many guests as you can and tell them to bring their generous spending habits with them to help stimulate our economy. The auction will take place at the Italian Heritage Center on February 8th, offering plenty of space and good food to get you in a giving and buying mood. For further answers to any questions, contact Ellen at: eniewoehner@banksis.com or Loretta at: lrowe@maine.rr.com.


PP Larry Gross was ready to give away close to $300 to the finder of the elusive Queen of Hearts. It was determined that Paul Tully should try his luck and pluck the correct red Queen. Alas, Nobleman Paul T. pulled out the King of Hearts and had to retreat a tad penny poor, but still smiling.


Portland High School counselor, Johanna Burdin introduced us to Hind Al Shammari, a Portland High School student, as she was our Youth Service Award recipient this month. Her proud mom, Gada Al Freh, was also introduced.

(Photo L-R: Johanna Burdin, Jan Chapman, Hind Al Shammari, President John Curran and Gada Al Freh.)
 

12/21/18 Bits & Pieces John Marr 2018-12-28 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Tom Talbott

This week we welcomed Amy Schram, a Senior Community Relations Specialist with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) as our guest speaker. At the outset, she noted that at any time we had questions to feel free to jump in. It didn’t take long for our inquisitive group to commandeer her presentation with both questions and personal experiences. 

Amy provided an overview of the BBB. Over 106 years, the non-profit organization has built a database that currently holds information on 5.5 million businesses, much of it free and accessible to the public. The BBB acts as a moderator and facilitates dialogue between customers and businesses, as well as B2B. 

Amy then turned her focus to the issue of scams, fraud, identity theft and cybersecurity.  You might want to check out the free BBB service, Scam Tracker: go.bbb.org/ne-scamtracker.  Here you can find what current scams may be hitting your area, what is being reported, and how to report ones you see. This year alone, 48,000 scams have been recorded by the system. All of this information is shared by the BBB to the FBI, the Federal Trade Commission, local and state government, police, as well as community or regional organizations such as AARP or SMAAA.

Scammers are almost impossible to catch because the vast majority operate outside the U.S. Hot spots include Jamaica, Dubai, Toronto, China, and Russia. Scammers have sophisticated systems, and use throwaway phones. They move quickly, and take advantage of every nugget of information they can obtain.

Let’s face it.....on the Web, there is so much information about you already posted. Your address, your phone, your relatives – all so easy to obtain. Now add in more personal info from Facebook, LinkedIn, your business website, or other social media sources. The clever caller may say your name. They make a statement just to hear your response. For example, they will say they are calling about your Verizon account, and you say sorry, you use Sprint. Next week you get a call from someone saying they are from Sprint and your bill is overdue. These predators will make 1000 calls a day, just looking to add snippets of info, that can used, or be sold to another scam company. Bottom line is that with your info out there, it is just a matter of time before it will be used against you. 

Imposter scams are the most predominant. Calls ‘from’ banks, cable and phone companies, utilities, credit cards, online shopping stores, even the police, will sound real, but it is a trap.

The “police” call to say you have overdue parking tickets, they’ll describe your car, and give you a few hours to pay or risk arrest. They’ll even have a 207-exchange number. It’s very misleading, and easy to fall for.

If you do not recognize the phone number, resist answering. If it is a legit call, they will leave a message and you can call back. One suggestion:  Go to NoMoRoBo.com (NMRB) and see how you can block recorded/automated phone calls. NMRB will detect it before you answer and disconnect the line. Free for land line, small charge for smart phones. 

An interesting meeting, with lessons we should heed.

 

 

(Photo: President John Curran and Amy Schram.)
 

12/21/18 Amy Schram, Better Business Bureau Tom Talbott 2018-12-28 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jake Bourdeau

John Wolcott, aka Santa and Matt Wolcott’s father, has a 38-year career in clausmanship. He is a sitting recycled (2 times) Rotary Club President of his East Greenwich, RI club. Mr. Wolcott presented both facts and/or folklore about his research on St. Nick, which is the precursor to Santa Claus, and other regional beliefs.

Mr. Wolcott discussed Nordic gods, to Christian saints, to Coca Cola through the various sagas, folklore, and documented history. While he presented his research about Christmas and the associated holidays, he said that it is up to us to determine what was history and what was folklore. 

Many of the European countries have slightly different stories, but all generally have a similar theme. Additionally, not all countries talk of jolly old men at Christmas, for instance: 

- Oden, the Nordic God of War, rides with his chariot and two horses called Thunder and Lightning (aka Donner and Blitzen, in German);  

- the Romans celebrated Saturnalia for the God of Saturn;

- In France, Pere Noel is popular;

- Befana in Italy, who is an elderly woman giving gifts on the eve of Epiphany;

- Jultomten in Scandinavia watches kids from under their stairs and gives presents to those that behave; and,

- St. Nicklaus, who was born in Asia Minor (Turkey at the time) to a wealthy family and became a bishop and was known to be very generous and kind. 

Most of the stories of St. Nicklaus (St. Nick) seem to mimic some current understanding of Santa Claus. St. Nick was born to wealthy merchants who died by plague around 280 AD. His uncle took him under his wing, and St. Nick was then educated across Western Europe. St. Nick became a priest and then a bishop. He was known for his generosity to sailors and children, where St. Nick would offer shelter and food. In one story about St. Nick, he was helping three sisters who had lost their father, but still wanted to marry. To grow their dowry, he was said to secretly drop gold coins down their chimney or into their drying stockings or shoes.  It was said, that the Italians sailors loved St. Nick so much, that in approximately 1100 AD they moved his casket from Turkey to Italy when Christianity was in jeopardy there, and they heard that the casket could possibly be destroyed. 

What we largely think about Santa Claus comes from a poem written by poet Clement Clark Moore: “Twas the night before Christmas.” In more recent times, it seems that the red suit, jovial attitude, and big white beard may have come from the 1930s era Coca Cola ad, which the company was trying to promote cola sales through the slow winter months. Something caught on there.

No matter whether folklore, history, or the truth was being told, one could tell that John Wolcott had the Christmas and Rotary spirit.
 

(Photo L-R: John & Donna Wolcott (Matt's parents), Matt Wolcott and President John Curran.)

12/14/18 John Wolcott - History of St. Nick and Santa Jake Bourdeau 2018-12-19 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Julie L'Heureux

President John Curran greeted 47 members, along with 2 visiting Rotarians and 2 guests. PP Cyrus Hagge (in photo at right) gave an invocation that included reading a charming seasonal poem about a snowball, written by Sheldon “Shel”  Silverstein, an American writer known for his cartoons, songs, and children’s books.


Ben Jackson addressed the Club about how he encourages the students at North Yarmouth Academy to learn about the Community and International Service programs supported by the Rotarians. He described how he was introduced to the International Service and good works of Rotary when he was inspired by the Evergreen Colorado Club. When he joined the Rotary Club of Portland, he took the experience of “Service Above Self” to the students at North Yarmouth Academy. One program he built upon was to encourage the student “Dress Down Day” to become a fund raising opportunity, whereby students can help the Rotary with raising money to fund charitable programs. 

(Photo at left L-R: Dick Giles and Ben Jackson)

Ben presented Portland Rotarian Dick Giles, who serves on the International Service Committee, with a $600 check from the students’ fund raising. The purpose of the donation was to help purchase school supplies for children in the Dominican Republic who are also helped by the “3H Project” (Hearing, Hands and H2O). Dick Giles accepted the donation and thanked Roger and Liz Fagan for their leadership of the Dominican International Service program. Appreciation is extended to the generosity of the North Yarmouth Academy students and to Ben for advising them about Rotary.


President John acknowledged Rotarians who have birthdays in December and the many Rotarians having anniversary dates for joining the club. Congratulations to all!


President John asked the staff personnel who serve our Club at the Clarion to join him at the podium, where he proceeded to thank them for their good food and service to our Club over the past year and gave each of them a holiday bonus showing our gratitude.
 
(In photo at right L-R: Jenn, our server, President John Curran and Kim, chef at the Clarion.)

Megan Peabody (in photo at left) presented a report about the benefits of the Rotary Short-Term Exchange (STEP) program. She became interested in joining Rotary because of her experience as a youth exchange student who benefited from the STEP program. Check the website www.exchangestudent.org to learn more about the short-term exchange. Megan would like to see the Portland Rotarians promote the program and help students to apply. Applications will be distributed to all area high schools.


1st Vice President Amy Chipman (photo at right), acting on behalf of the Nominating Committee Chair, PP Don Zillman, reported that the committee of PP Roxane Cole, PP Peter Goffin, PP Larry Gross, 2nd VP Ellen Niewoehner, Patty Erickson, Justin Lamontagne, Linda Varrell and himself have met to establish a slate of officers for the Rotary year 2019-2020 for our approval.

Nominations:
President: Amy Chipman
First Vice-President: Ellen Niewoehner
Second Vice-President: Bob Martin
Secretary: Bruce Moore

Treasurer: Scott Blakeslee
Directors: Gracie Johnston and Mike Fortunato

Hearing no nominations from the floor, the slate of officers will be voted on at the Friday, December 21st meeting.


Mike Reed (photo at left), Chair of the Fund Raising Committee announced that in order to offset a deficit in our operating budget, a "Sweetheart Auction" (formerly known as our re-gifting auction) is being organized to take place at a meeting in February, possibly February 8th, but sometime in that month. A wine tasting is also planned for late March or April.

 


PP Dick Hall is the chair of the Club’s Foundation Committee. He introduced five Rotarians who received Paul Harris Fellows and each is a participant in a “Circle of Five,” those who donate $200 a year for five years, to meet the goal of receiving their pin. George Crockett received a red stone “ruby” pin for his 6th Paul Harris; PP Russ Burleigh received 2 blue “sapphire” stones in his pin; 1st VP Amy Chipman received five blue “sapphires” in her pin, and John Houghton and Mike Fortunato each received four blue “sapphires” in their pins. A standing ovation congratulated the generous group.

(Photo at upper right: PP Dick Hall, John Houghton, Mike Fortunato, George Crockett, PP Russ Burleigh and 1st VP Amy Chipman.)


PP Loretta Rowe (photo at left) led the weekly raffle drawing and President John's name was selected by our speaker to try his hand at winning the $221 pot. With so many cards in the deck, John was able to find the 7 of Spades. Seems that Queen of Hearts is going to stay hidden for a while.


PP Bill Blount led the singing of three Christmas Carols, including “Santa Claus is Coming to Town,” joined by members of the Music Committee, as a segue to the introduction of the distinguished guest speaker....John Wolcott aka Santa Claus, himself. (See separate photo in this issue.)
 

12/14/18 Bits & Pieces Julie L'Heureux 2018-12-18 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott
Amy Schram has been with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 2011 and serves as Manager of Community Relations. Her focus is to foster the business to consumer relationship and educate the public at large on Scams, Fraud, & Identity Theft issues, Cybersecurity concerns, and all BBB programs and services. She delivers close to 200 programs each year, speaking to thousands of business and community members throughout Eastern Massachusetts, Maine, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
*12/21/18 Amy Schram, Better Business Bureau Matt Wolcott 2018-12-18 05:00:00Z 0

As we receive applications for prospective members to join our Portland Rotary Club, the names of the applicants will be included in our Windjammer. Any information and/or comments you would like to share will be handled confidentially. Please contact Loretta Rowe: lrowe@maine.rr.com. Your input will be appreciated.

PROSPECT                 BUSINESS
(Sponsor)                                                                           

Mike Anderson             Malone Commercial Brokers
(Ellen Niewoehner)

Michelle DiSotto           Goodwill Northern N.E.
(Tom Ranello)


Thank you.

Prospective Rotarians Loretta Rowe 2018-12-14 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott

John Wolcott (Matt's father) is a retired Systems Engineer and president of Systemetrics, Inc., a software development firm. Since his retirement, he has been a school bus driver in East Greenwich, Rhode Island. From Thanksgiving through Christmas, however, he dons the red suit and morphs into the jolly old elf from the North Pole, with whom you may be familiar.

A 38-year veteran of Clausmanship, he will introduce us all to the original Saint Nicklaus and follow the legend that has led to our modern-day Santa.

John is also president of his Rotary Club in Greenwich, Rhode Island, its first “re-cycled” president.

 

*12/14/18 John Wolcott, History of St Nicklaus to Santa Matt Wolcott 2018-12-10 05:00:00Z 0

At PRCC, we are thankful....


...For the Rotary Club of Portland's gift of Thanksgiving Dinner and

...FOR THE MANY MEMBERS AND VOLUNTEERS WHO MAKE RECOVERY POSSIBLE FOR OTHERS.

 BY PASSING IT ON....WE GIVE TO ONE ANOTHER.

 

PRCC offers over 35 different recovery groups and activities each week. Our members hold meetings such as Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, SMART recovery, Refuge Recovery, Wellbriety, and many more. We also have groups for family members...Addict in the Family, and Adult Children of Alcoholics and Dysfunctional Families. All groups are open and welcome new members and visitors.

That's not all...recovery is also about wellness, creativity, and celebration. Join us for yoga, the Artist's Way, Music Therapy, or Spoken Word night. Interested in Attitudinal Healing or a session of Reiki? For a full schedule, check out Facebook or our website at portlandrecovery.org.
 

PRCC Says "Thank You Portland Rotary" 2018-12-05 05:00:00Z 0

The Deering High School Choral musical family will be presenting a holiday program for us this Friday. At Deering, the young people are committed to a high-quality choral program.

The vocal ensemble performs repertoire that is both stylistically varied and of high musical quality. Students are aware that being a member of the Deering Chorus is different from being in any other class. During rehearsals, students are asked to concentrate on greater refinement of previously acquired choral skills. These skills include diction, articulation, dynamics, octavo reading and producing a beautiful tone. Emphasis on part singing and sight reading are also part of this group. A great deal of time is spent on vocal and musical techniques, as well as performance standards. 

Many of the students who become involved in the choral program remain for their entire high school careers, primarily because being in a choral group is like being part of an extended family, as there is a special bond that is created among people who make music together. 

A select group of students from DHS's chorus, under the direction of Dr. Peter Stickney, will be performing selections that celebrate the diversity of the holiday season. In between songs, we’ll provide some narrative that relates to the context of each selection. Please be sure to join us!

*12/07/18 Deering High School Chorus - Holiday Program 2018-12-05 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jake Bourdeau

President John Curran welcomed 49 members and 4 visiting guests to our meeting and asked David Small to give the invocation on Friday. In honor of the holidays, David presented his modified version of “A Thanksgiving Prayer for a Winter Day.” Shortly thereafter, Queenie led us in the Pledge of Allegiance, and we followed that by singing ‘America the Beautiful.’


Please congratulate PP Dick Hall as the next District 7780 Governor for 2021-22. With his extensive Rotary resume, we can understand why he was elected. 


Peggy “Queenie” Wescott has been voted in as the next honorary member of the Portland Rotary Club. PP Peter Goffin (at left with "Queenie") presented this achievement after discussing the many ways that Queenie has helped our club and Rotary’s endeavors through her many years of service and club membership.  


Recently Portland Rotary’s Jesse Harvey presented on a discussion panel following the public showing of “Recovery Boys” at the Portland Museum of Art. Keep up the great work, Jesse!


Dave Putnam (at right) presented on Long Creek’s game night. Rotarians baked pies and spent their monthly Tuesday evening game night with the boys in the Cedar Unit. Several Rotarians helped, including: PP Don Lowry, PP John Marr, PP Jim and Barbara Willey, Mike Fortunato, Dave Putnam, and Erik Greven. Dave Putnam observed that the kids were having a good time, and that it’s worthy time being shared with them. The group meets once a month on a Tuesday evening. If you would like to join them, contact Jim Willey (jimandbarbarawilley@gmail.com) or Mike fortunator (michael.k.fortunato@gmail.com.


Rusty Atwood, in charge of the weekly raffle, had the speaker select a ticket from the can, for a shot at a pot of over $1200. To no one’s surprise, a ticket with three initials was selected. Some of you may be thinking HHH, but it was the PTG ticket that was selected. PP Paul Gore (at left), thought for a while, channeled his luck, and ultimately picked the Queen of Hearts out of a ten card stack. Coincidentally, he noted the Queen of Hearts was picked in honor of Queenie. 


Ben Millick reported on the Club’s New Mainer Task Force, where several Rotarians are reaching out to service organizations who are helping new Mainers in their communities. The club will be hosting speakers on this topic in the coming months, and the committee is speaking to several organizations with this focus. The club is evaluating potential club partners moving forward, so if you are interested in this topic, please reach out to President John Curran, Ben Millick, or Max Chikuta


On December 5 at noon, there will be New Mainer Task Force event where you can tour Learning Works, and see how they are helping some new Mainers locally. 


Member Dave Smith has had some health issues recently, and he is asking for those Rotarians that have some cheer, to stop by and say hello. Have a speedy recovery, Dave. 


Gracie Johnston (at left) reported on the Thanksgiving activities at Saint Vincent DePaul, where over 50 volunteers helped serve at least 106 Thanksgiving meals. Gracie also called for volunteers for the Salvation Army’s lunch-time bell ringing to be held in Monument Square in the coming weeks. Good news, based upon her email this week, it looks like all the volunteer slots have been filled.    


For more than 40 years, a number of Portland Rotary's members have been involved with helping with Meals on Wheels on Christmas day. For more information, you can contact PP Larry Gross at Southern Maine Agency on Aging at lgross@smaaa.org


The Crutches4Africa, December 8th event is being rescheduled. Stay tuned for the new date.
 

11/30/18 Bits & Pieces Jake Bourdeau 2018-12-05 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Dick Hall

Alain Nahimana shared his personal history and the reasons he co-founded and is currently Executive Director of the Greater Portland Immigrant Welcome Center (IWC).  Alain, who has been in the United States for 8 years is originally from Burundi. In his home country, he was a business owner, and currently speaks 6 languages. Like all asylum seekers, he was not permitted to work for 150 days while his application was being reviewed; he needed to survive on General Assistance of $50 biweekly for food, $25 biweekly for other expenses, and rent subsidy.

Alain's first job was as a janitor including cleaning of toilets. He then was lucky to get a front desk job at a refugee program, then on the phones for Time Warner. He left Time Warner due to the verbal abuse from clients. He moved on to a courier service, and then to Coordinator for the ME Immigrant Coalition. Alain told us this story to show how difficult it is for an immigrant, even one with a professional background and mastery of the language. 

Alain co-founded IWC to address the barriers for immigrants to overcome:  language, entrepreneurship opportunities, and personal aspirations. Because immigrants must work 2 or 3 jobs to support their families, there is no time left to attend classes and learn English. IWC has created a computer-based learning lab, to allow people to learn at their own pace during the time they have available. To address entrepreneurship, IWC is working with finance, accounting, and banking professionals to offer mentoring help; already 50-100 people have expressed an interest. To assist immigrants in defining their aspirations, IWC provides an Immigrant Business Hub, with a professional atmosphere and a suite of shared services. When an immigrant comes to that space, they can explore their dreams and not be mentally stuck in their present situation.

For more information, you can go to: www.welcomeimmigrant.org/

(Photo L-R: President John Curran, Alain Nahimana and PP Laura Young.)

11/30/18 Alain Nahimana, Ex Dir Immigrant Welcome Center Dick Hall 2018-12-05 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jesse Harvey
Jesse Harvey spoke from the podium to promote a movie about those with Substance Use Disorder called "Recovery Boys." It is being screened in Portland on Thursday, November 29th at 5:30 p.m. at the Portland Museum of Art. After the film there will be a panel discussion with Jesse being one of the panelists.
 
THIS IS A FREE EVENT.
 
Movie: Recovery Boys Jesse Harvey 2018-11-26 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Laura Young

Originally from Burundi, Alain Nahimana is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Greater Portland Immigrant Welcome Center. Previously, he served as the Coordinator for the Maine Immigrant Rights Coalition (MIRC).

Alain brings his experience with community organizing and coalition building to foster collaboration, build partnernships, and advance the agenda for immigrant integration.

*11/30/18 Alain Nahimana, Ex Dir Immigrant Welcome Ctr Laura Young 2018-11-26 05:00:00Z 0
Additional photos taken at the meeting on Friday:
 
 
 
 
 
PP Ben Lowry (looking pretty happy).....
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Gracie Johnston (looking pretty pensive).....
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
And one from last week's Veterans' Appreciation lunch....Auta Main, Veterans Program Mgr, Bureau of Employment Services; our own PP Bob Traill; and Debbie Kelly, Maine Director, Veterans Employment Services.
 
Photo Ops 2018-11-20 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Ben Lowry

Our meeting of November 16th fell on the day of the first snowstorm of the season, so attendance was fairly sparse at The Clarion, with 30 members attending. The Clarion put out a beautiful spread for us, much to the delight of members such as Past President Don Zillman, who seems ready to load up for his next big road race. (see photo at right).

PP Russ Burleigh presented a very thoughtful invocation, telling a story that began when he was just 9 years old. His grandmother relayed the memory of hearing the news that “the president has been shot,” referring to the assassination of President Lincoln in April of 1865. Ninety-eight years later, Russ was working in Dallas and he and some of his co-workers excitedly watched as Air Force One came in on final approach over the parking lot of The Dallas Symphony office, close enough so that they could see the rivets on the wings. Twenty minutes later, the same group of office mates joyously watched as the motorcade whizzed by, with President and Jackie Kennedy waving to the excited crowds that had lined the route heading into the city. Within a half hour, Russ and his office mates were stunned by the announcement on the radio: “The president has been shot.”  His mind raced back to his grandmother uttering those same words. This Thursday, as we enjoy cherished time with loved ones around a Thanksgiving feast, take a moment to remember where you were on November 22, 1963, when the face and hope of our nation was lost and Camelot came crumbling down.  

PP Roxane Cole led our group in the pledge and PP Laura Young guided us through our National Anthem.

President John announced that our own Bob Clark received a prestigious award at the Day One dinner last week and that the award was presented by Rotarian Ralph Hendrix.


Terri St. Angelo gave an early update on the very successful Veteran’s Luncheon on November 9th at The Holiday Inn. While the two event leaders, Paul Tully and Charlie Frair, took some much-deserved time off, Terri headed to the podium to give us a few statistics: we served 217 veterans, 31 of their family members, 71 non-Rotarians, with 14 sponsors and 336 total attendees. With 77 volunteers, this event has now become one of the most recognized and powerful veteran events in all of New England. The final tallies on fund-raising, etc. will trickle in over the next few weeks, but suffice it to say that The Portland Rotary Club should be very, very proud of this accomplishment. 

President John recognized Charlie and Paul for their fantastic leadership of the event. Also recognized were the Rotarians who started the Vets lunch 4 years ago - PP Peter Goffin and Mike Fortunato.


The District 7780 Recovery Initiative Committee on the opioid crisis is now picking up steam.  With a very well attended educational meeting in Wells last week, Jan Chapman was pleased to provide a brief background on the goals of this group, which has now attracted attention from Rotary International. Simply put, the goals are twofold:  to save lives and to reduce the stigma of SUD (substance use disorder). With roughly 50 Rotarians and concerned citizens attending the meeting at York County Community College to receive training on the use of Naloxone (or Narcan), the drug that can aid in reversing the effects of an overdose, we can feel good about the beginning steps of this most imperative initiative. And, with another 16 students (this writer included) set to graduate from our second Rotary-sponsored “Recovery Coach Academy,” we are now set to really make a difference in this ongoing crisis that has affected so many families in Maine and beyond. Please speak with Jan, Bruce Moore, Gracie Johnston, Jesse Harvey or myself if you’d like to join in this most important work. And mark your calendars for November 29th, when the movie “Recovery Boys” will be shown at 4:45 at the Portland Museum of Art. (See separate article this issue)


PP Dick Hall was proud to offer a Paul Harris Fellowship Award to PP Bowen Depke, who proudly accepted his PHF+1 pin (with a sapphire!) on behalf of his ‘Circle of Five.’  These circles, along with sustaining members who pledge $100 per year, are the lifeblood of our club’s giving to this most important arm of Rotary.  Please consider a gift or pledge as the year winds down.

 


Matt Tassey offered up $1267 to any Rotarian who could just get through two simple steps:  have your name pulled from the can and then merely select the Queen of Hearts from a dwindling deck of cards.  Well, Justin Lamontagne was able to get through the first of these steps but, when facing just eleven cards, we could see that his hand began to tremble and sweat quickly formed on his brow. He closed his eyes and, for a split second, he saw the unbridled joy on his children’s faces as they opened a thousand dollars in extra Christmas gifts. The image of squeals and warm hugs warmed Justin as he reached out.....but then, like the slap of the winter wind, reality hit and he held up the Three of Hearts. Justin, with a small tear running down his left cheek, went back and took his seat, satisfied with his chance at glory.
 

11/16/18 Bits & Pieces Ben Lowry 2018-11-20 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Marr

The irony of a cautionary message being delivered by our guest speaker Kathleen Summers-Grice, being accentuated, interrupted and eventually concluded by the Clarion alarm, couldn’t have been orchestrated any better. Lest the message was insufficiently promoted, given the interruption and storm depleted attendance. The bottom-line, simply stated, is the migration of the toxic stimulant methamphetamine is making its way south from Washington County and taking over Cumberland and York Counties. Of late, much of our attention is concentrated on containing the proliferation of heroin/opiate drugs and reducing the associated death statistics. As if the opiate tragedy is not enough of a fright, we now must be just as vigilant of the methamphetamine re-emergence. Meth addiction has shrunken from the public consciousness shadowed by the painful death count associated with tainted, high- powered heroin. It is not a stretch to say that we are fighting a two-pronged world war that demands a high intensity, well balanced attack if we have any chance of gaining some degree of control over our worldwide, powerful and well financed enemy.

Ms Grice is the principal of Eaton River Strategies, a consultant and public affairs firm, and has been contracted by the Consumer Healthcare Product Association. As the Association title suggests, they are interested in the retail distribution of common health care products, such as pseudoephedrine based cold medicines. The masses assume that the ingredients of over the counter medications are perfectly safe, if taken as instructed. However, there are certain components which can be repurposed to create distinctly different new products. The hallmark of the described re-formulation is methamphetamine, aka speed, crystal or just meth, derived from your common Sudafed cold medicine. Despite the infamy methamphetamine, it continues to be a scourge that captures too many. Given the popularity of the TV series, “Breaking Bad,” one might think that just about everyone is familiar with the power and implications of this high-powered stimulant. Nobody starts out thinking “today I want to get hooked on meth.”  However, the allure of the drug as an energy enhancer is captivating. It seems that meth has a particularly powerful, if not unique, brain influence that hastens the likelihood of addiction and makes recovery a long and painful exercise.

The rate of addiction, long ago, caught the attention of the authorities and they began to crack down by trying to dry up the primary source of home cooked meth, i.e. the pseudoephedrine-based cold medicines. The drug manufacturers did not want the dispensing of such cold medicine to require a doctor’s prescription, so they worked with the Federal authorities to find a reasonable compromise. The compromise was to require that these cold meds be kept behind the pharmacist counter and to be signed for and tracked, to prevent the practice of purchasing multiple packages of the drug to distill into meth. The purchase of multiple packages for drug making purposes is called “smurfing” and those who make the buys are called smurfs and pick up cash for making the buys. The stipends for “smurfing” are relatively small in comparison to the big bucks the providers make, but are enough to get unknowing accomplices into the procurement process. When a young person of legal age is asked if they would like to “make a few bucks” by making a simple buy of a legal medication, they think nothing of it. The kids are not the only ones duped. Our speaker told of us of a middle aged, well educated friend who was asked by her son, who was studying overseas, to bring him some of his preferred cold medicine she thought nothing of it. When she went to the local pharmacy and asked for 10 packages of the cold medicine, she was alerted by the pharmacist that she ran the risk of going on the list sent to the Feds and could be incarcerated and fined.

While much of the methamphetamine illegally distributed in the U.S. comes from organized crime outside our borders, it still is cooked locally and requires “smurfing” in order to be successful. The manufacturing techniques, sad to say, are readily available on-line. The meth labs are danger zones and prone to fire and the toxic chemicals are easily transferred and can contaminate an entire home requiring thousands of dollars in remediation to make the building habitable. The residue of a meth cook is significantly troublesome to the public safety agencies in the area. It is so bad in some areas of the state that workers are told to avoid picking up Mountain Dew bottles since it is a tool of choice of makeshift labs. The simple lesson Ms. Grice is delivering is that smurfs may be cute, but Smurfing is a criminal activity and you will be prosecuted, so don’t buy more than your immediate personal needs.

 

 

(Photo L-R: Mike Fortunato, Kathie Summers-Grice, President John Curran and Matt Wolcott.)
 

11/16/18 Kathie Summers-Grice, SMURFING: Substance Abuse John Marr 2018-11-19 05:00:00Z 0

District Governor John LoBosco is pleased to share with us that the Nominating Committee nominated Past President Dick Hall of The Rotary Club of Portland to be our District Governor in 2021-22. 

Dick first joined Rotary in 1984, when he followed his grandfather and father by joining The Rotary Club of Worcester, MA. Dick's father (age 96) and his uncle (age 86) are still members of that club. Dick's father served as Governor of District 7910 in 1987-88. Dick's sister and his daughter are Rotarians in our District's Westbrook-Gorham and Portland Sunrise clubs.

Keep an eye out for the District Newsletter in December, when Dick's nomination will be formally announced (as our Bylaws require) and some of Dick's extensive Rotary resume will be shared at that time.

Please join us in congratulating Dick on his nomination and thank him for his willingness to serve.
 

Breaking News from the District Governor 2018-11-19 05:00:00Z 0
Here are more notable photos taken at our Special Veterans' Appreciation Lunch:
 
 
 
Checking in so many veterans and guests.......
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
by the many volunteers. These two dapper gents were (L-R) Past Presidents Tom Talbott and Bill Blount........
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
and the Marine Honor Guard, bearing the colors.
They looked so good, we had to get their photo in twice.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
MORE Photos Corner 2018-11-14 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

She arrived in a bus with a group of others from the Veterans Home in Scarborough, hunched over in her wheelchair, the clear oxygen lead clipped under her nose almost obliterated by her smile and bright eyes. Clear, bright blue eyes that drew you down to talk to her. Her handshake gripped you firmly in her soft hand. “Thank you for having us,” she said after I parked her at a table and helped her get situated. Her name was Norma Merrill, a veteran of World War II, who continued to smile as she told her story. She coded and decoded messages for the Navy in a job so secret that not only was she escorted to and from work, no one, not even her family, knew what her wartime task was until the Department of Defense finally declassified the war five years ago. “I knew the war was over when I sent out the messages about the Battle of the Bulge,” she said. Stationed in Europe, she had a special story to tell if she was captured, along with a song to sing to make the enemy think she was crazy. “They told me to sing dum diddy dum diddy dum dum,” she laughed. When I told Norma I had been drafted into the Army during Vietnam, she said, “You poor boys, sent over there to fight. Oh, I prayed for all of you.” 

The Holiday Inn By-the-Bay was filled with stories last Friday from veterans who served in every conflict since World War I, the war said to end all wars, the cessation of which, Armistice Day, formed the foundation of our current Veterans Day observance. Charlie Frair and Paul Tully led a team of Portland Rotarians who organized the largest Veterans Day luncheon ever sponsored by the club, with over 75 Rotarians who volunteered to implement the well-planned event. The Holiday Inn staff set enough tables to serve 328 guests, and extra chairs were set up for more. 

 

President John Curran welcomed television personality Erin Ovalle (pictured at right) to manage the ceremonies;

 

 

Denny Breau (pictured at left) provided music for the packed room;

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

the colors were presented by the 1st Battalion, 25th Marines (pictured at right); 

 

 

 

 

 

World War II Marine veteran Past President Bob Traill (pictured at left) led the Pledge of Allegiance; Kathy Grammer, assisted by trumpeter Betty Rines, directed the National Anthem; and Colonel Andrew Gibson, Senior Army Chaplain of the Maine National Guard, offered the invocation.

 

 

 

 

Gulf War vet Past President Kris Rosado saluted fallen comrades with a moving toast, while describing the special "Fallen Soldier" table (pictured at right) set up to honor those who gave their lives in battle.

 

Mayor Ethan Strimling (pictured at left) extended appreciation to veterans on behalf of the City of Portland and recognized several elected members of the Legislature and City Council, including our own Erik Jorgensen. Representatives of a variety of organizations who provide services and assistance to veterans were also invited to stand and be recognized, several of whom the Club has acknowledged with financial contributions.

Past President Russ Burleigh conducted the audience in the traditional rendition of the Armed Forces Medley, with veterans from each service standing as their military branch’s song was sung.

Major General John W. Libby (Ret.), Maine National Guard, thanked the Club for its “marvelous expression” of gratitude, and also recognized family members who were left at home when veterans deployed. “There are family sacrifices,” he said, “when the duties of four hands are taken up by two hands.” He added, “if you really want to thank a veteran, engage with the organizations that serve veterans.” Gen. Libby also pointed out that while Veterans Day celebrates the 6.6 percent of the U.S. population who have served in the military, over twelve percent of Mainers have been in the armed forces.

Captain Jonathan D. Bratten (pictured at right), Command Historian of the Maine National Guard helped put into perspective the service of Maine men and women in the armed forces, especially the 34,000 Mainers who served in World War I, with an interesting presentation focused on that war. He said that the WWI generation needed to be seen as an inspiration for all of us. “They knew we needed to be ready to serve,” he said. “But may we not be needed.”

“Thank you so much,” Norma said when lunch was over and I wheeled her to her bus to go back to Scarborough. “You don’t know how much this means to us.” Yeah, Norma, I think I do. Dum diddy, dum diddy, dum dum.

11/09/18 Veterans' Appreciation Lunch Bob Martin 2018-11-14 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Curran
We are proud and honored to have received the letter below from Senator Angus King regarding our Veterans' Appreciation Lunch and wanted to share it with our members and friends.
 
Special Letter from Senator Angus King John Curran 2018-11-14 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott

Kathleen Summers-Grice is the founder of Eaton River Strategies, a full-service public affairs and consulting company offering clients strategic guidance on corporate and political initiatives since 2006. Ms. Summers has over 30 years of experiences in politics and public affairs in New England.

As founder of Eaton River Strategies, Ms. Summers-Grice has developed and implemented strategic grassroots campaigns, earned media initiatives and grasstops engagement in every New England state, for clients such as Verizon, Pfizer, AARP, Delta Airlines, Ford Motor Company, and the United States Chamber of Commerce.  

Nationally, she has also helped clients such as AARP develop cutting edge engagement programs. Her work in designing and implementing AARP’s 2016 voter engagement campaign, “Take a Stand”, made her a finalist for Campaigns and Elections Reed Award for the best public affairs campaign that year.

Before founding Eaton River Strategies, Ms. Summers served as the New England Representative for the United States Department of Labor. Sworn into this position in 2003, she acted as Secretary Chao’s Regional Representative, serving as the primary liaison between the Department of Labor and elected officials, stakeholder groups, and state labor officials. She has also been at the center of Republican politics as the Deputy Political Director for Fred Thompson’s 2008 Presidential campaign, and a consultant on numerous gubernatorial, congressional and senatorial campaigns.  

In 2005 she was tapped by the International Republican Institute to provide political training to elected officials in Morocco as part of their Democracy in Training Program. In 2012 she was recognized by Campaigns and Elections as one of their top 500 including being one of the top political operatives in New England.

Kathleen graduated from Providence College with a bachelor’s degree in American History in 1987 and with a master’s degree in American History in 1989. She is from Upton, Massachusetts and now lives in Cumberland, Maine with her husband Roy.
 

*11/16/18 Kathie Summers-Grice, Smurfing: Substance Abuse Matt Wolcott 2018-11-13 05:00:00Z 0
Friday, November 9, 2018
Portland Rotary will host a 4th Annual
Special Veterans' Appreciation Lunch
at the Holiday Inn By-the-Bay
88 Spring Street, Portland 
 
Join us in honoring the men and women
who have served our country.
 
Please arrive early - check in begins 11:30 a.m.
Program will begin at 12:00 p.m.
 
Our special guest speakers will be
Major General John W. Libby, Retired
Military Historian, Captain Jonathan D. Bratten
 
All veterans are our guests and their meals are complimentary.
The cost for all other attendees is $25.
Please pay at the door...cash and checks only.
 
Required pre-registrations - SOLD OUT!
 
*11/09/18 4th Annual Special Veterans' Appreciation Lunch 2018-11-09 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Tom Talbott

With a busy agenda slated for the meeting, President John Curran began the proceedings by welcoming 46 members, along with 5 guests, then inviting PP Cyrus Hagge (Photo at right) to provide the Invocation. With our Veterans' Appreciation Lunch planned for next Friday, Cyrus read a solemn poem by Arlo Guthrie, “When A Soldier Makes It Home.” It was followed with a moment of silence and reflection, and the Pledge of Allegiance. Meredith Small led us in “My Country ‘Tis Of Thee.


Three bites into lunch and President John was back at the podium! He welcomed 5 guests, recognized 5 birthdays, and 12 Portland Rotarians who “joined in November” anniversaries. Hats off to PP Bob Traill who has notched the longest run, serving Portland Rotary for the past 38 years. 


Rusty Atwood introduced Victoria Caron, Dir. Of Guidance at Cheverus HS, to tell us about our Youth Service Award recipient, Nina Lee. Described as “driven, gregarious, strong, a leader,” Nina was twice Class president, a varsity athlete in soccer and swimming, a Key Club member, and a very active community volunteer, including 264 hours alone at the Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital. Nina’s goal is to someday be a cardio-vascular surgeon.


Terri St. Angelo (Photo at right L-R: Amy Chipman and Terri St. Angelo) conducted the weekly raffle with $1222 on the line. 1st VP Amy Chipman had the honors of having her name drawn, but the 7 of Clubs offers no pay day, so the pursuit of the Queen of Hearts continues. 


Charlie Frair is in countdown mode for next Friday's Veterans lunch. Plenty of good news to rally around – over $15k raised so far, 72 volunteers ready to serve – both new records. We could use some more early set-up volunteers. If you are helping – be on time!  With the event at the Holiday Inn By-The-Bay, parking will be an issue due to another large event at the venue at the same time, so try to carpool if possible. Bring $25 cash or check, limit the need to make change. Ceremonies start at 12noon. 283 registered so far, and we’ll stop at 330. 


Gracie Johnston reminded us of the several important upcoming events. On Nov 15th 5:00-6:30 pm, there will be an “Overdose Recognition and Response” class at York Community College. On Nov 21st we will supply, cook, and serve a Thanksgiving lunch at St. Vincent dePaul Church, Portland. Always a meaningful event, we had over 50 Rotarians involved last year. Sign up sheets are out on the tables. Set up starts 8:00 am, lunch at 10:30am.

Gracie then introduced Leslie Smart, Exec. Dir. at Portland Recovery Community Center, and presented her with a $500 check to help keep the center open on Thanksgiving Day. (Photo at right L-R: Leslie Smart and Gracie Johnston.) The center opened in 2012, an independent non-profit. It does not provide treatment; its purpose is to provide peer support. 24-100 people per day visit and participate in a wide range of activities. There are meetings with recovery coaches, all volunteers. Many volunteers have personally been in recovery, imparting what they’ve learned in their journey. Leslie shared that she has been in recovery since 1989, and that nationally 23 million are on that same path, with another 22 million estimated who need help. Everything is free, and though there is a state contract, there is a strong reliance on donations. She thanked Rotary for their increasing support and recruitment of new coaches. (See separate article regarding this subject.)


Final items came from President John, including news from Gus Karlson that Portland Rotary has again won the Club Service Trophy at the MS Regatta!

Ralph Hendrix donated courtside seats to our raffle to help World Polio Day. $510 raised from raffle, triple matched by the Gates Foundation for a total of $1530. 

We finished by all sending “Best Wishes!” to our David Smith, who is rehabbing at home after surgery. Speedy recovery David! 
 

11/02/18 Bits & Pieces Tom Talbott 2018-11-06 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Dick Hall

Rusty Atwood (L-R in photo at left: Rusty Atwood and L. Sandy Maisel) gave an extensive introduction of our speaker so we were all very aware of his background and expertise in the field of political analysis. When he took the podium, Portland Rotary was again treated to the insights of Colby professor and noted author, L. Sandy Maisel. Sandy started by telling us he was surprised to be invited back after so many of his predictions in 2016 did not come true. He did remind us several times, that even if there is a significant chance of winning, there is still insignificant chances of losing.

Sandy discussed the present Republican majority in the House and the expected changes in the upcoming election. Based on a review of history, he told us not to expect a large change after the midterms, as the predictions are that 27-44 seats will change, leaving the house with a Democratic majority of four seats. He explained that there are two basic theories in this election, the first being it is a referendum on Donald Trump and the second being a typical reversion to the mean, from the extremes. Key issues in the election are Trump, health care & drug prices, immigration, taxes and jobs. Depending on the location in the country, the priority shifts dramatically.

Trump’s strategy of supporting senators in areas he was strong, is a perfectly rational strategy and has a strong chance of resulting in a Republican Senate, thereby giving him the ability to claim he was the reason for the win. Trump probably realizes that Republicans cannot hold the House, and he does not want to be associated with a loss.

Sandy told us that the Democrats have an 87% chance of winning the House and the Republicans have an 86% chance of winning the Senate. He again cautioned that this means there is a 1 in 7 chance that either of those predictions will be wrong. Democrats are in trouble in the Senate because small states have equal power to big states, and small rural states poll as having immigration and the Kavanaugh nomination being top issues for them. Trump campaigning on those issues will probably be a winning strategy.

Most of the current political prognosticators are giving House predictions of 204 wins for Democrats, 197 wins for Republicans and 34 races still considered toss-ups. The expectation is that Democrats will win a few more toss-ups, resulting in taking control of the House. Sandy’s prediction is the Democrats will win the House by 10 and the Republicans will end with 53 in the Senate.

Sandy moved on to the governors races, which he predicted will move toward the Democrats, with potential major changes in Alabama and Florida. He told us that the reason that governors races are important is that the states control the creation of districts. Gerrymandering, manipulating the electoral boundaries to favor one party, has become a very significant factor in elections. It creates winning districts, and also tends to increase polarization of the electorate. With a 2020 census, districts will be redrawn by the governors elected this time.

 

(Photo L-R: Rusty Atwood, L. Sandy Maisel and President John Curran.)
 

11/02/18 L. Sandy Maisel, Political Predictions Dick Hall 2018-11-06 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jan Chapman

HOW TO RECOGNIZE AND RESPOND TO AN OPIATE/HEROIN OVERDOSE

A call to action for all Rotarians:  The Rotary District 7780 Recovery Initiative Committee in partnership with the City of Portland Public Health Division’s Overdose Prevention Project, is pleased to announce an opportunity for Rotarians in District 7780 to be trained in Recognizing and Responding to an Opiate/Heroin Overdose on Thursday, November 15, 2018, from 5:00 PM to 6:30 PM Pratt & Whitney Building, Hannaford Hall on the Wells YCCC Campus.

Rotarians will learn about the opioid epidemic and substance use disorder and will be trained in how to recognize the signs of an overdose, how to perform first-aid, as well as how to administer Naloxone (the drug which reverses the affects of opioids). Naloxone will be on hand to give out to those who attend.  The goal of this training is not only for life-saving purposes, it will hopefully help reduce the stigma attached to those with substance use disorder.  Please click on this link to RSVP, or email me at the email address* below.   https://doodle.com/poll/8uq5tf95utm5bimy

Anyone with questions or requests for additional information is urged to contact Chief Bob MacKenzie at the Kennebunk Police Department, 207-604-1339 or email*: rmackenzie@kennebunkmaine.us

NOTE:  We are planning a similar program in Portland on 1/24/19 at 6pm. Details to follow.

Substance Recovery Initiative Jan Chapman 2018-11-06 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jake Bourdeau

President John Curran brought the meeting to order, welcoming 49 members, 2 visiting Rotarians and 1 guest. Gracie Johnston gave the invocation, and the Pledge of Allegiance and patriotic song were initiated by those present at President John’s request . 


PP Dick Hall and 1st VP Amy Chipman were up at the podium to pick this year’s “Circles of Five” winners, and those selected will receive the Paul Harris Fellow during a future meeting. Of note, Amy was asked to pick a ticket for her “Circle of Five” and she declined to pick out of conflict of interest. It was fitting that Amy’s name was selected anyways. 


Matt Wolcott introduced Mark Foster as the newest member to the Portland Rotary Club. Mark works for the People’s United Bank. He was asked by Matt to speak about his links to Rotary. After a brief introduction about himself, Mark said that he looks forward to working with the Club members on our various projects. Please introduce yourselves to Mark Foster in the coming months. 


Charlie Frair discussed the need for volunteers for the upcoming Veterans’ luncheon where over 300 people are expected. Of note, the veterans that have signed up have expressed great interest in hearing the speakers. If you plan to volunteer and have not done so, please provide your name to Charlie Frair. He asks that volunteers arrive at 10 am before the lunch for training. Please check the Club’s website for more information. 


PP Larry Gross ran the weekly raffle for a shot at over $1,000. With less than 13 cards remaining, Larry verified the Queen of Hearts was still in the deck. 3H’s ticket was drawn, however, the Queen of Hearts was elusive and she remains in the deck. 


Mike Reed discussed the Club’s general fund shortfall, and described how a fundraiser to get more funds into the Club is needed. Mike and others believe that donations from other fundraising events previously earmarked for outside uses, should not be allocated to run the Club’s day-to-day expenses, and that the shortfall should appropriately be made up from the members. Please send Mike your thoughts for a fundraiser at:  mreed0729@hotmail.com.
 

10/26/18 Bits & Pieces Jake Bourdeau 2018-10-30 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rusty Atwood

L. Sandy Maisel is the Goldfarb Family Distinguished Professor of American Government, past chair of the Department of Government (for 20 years), and founding director of the Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs at Colby College, where he has taught since 1971. He is the author or editor of more than twenty books (several in multiple editions), including most recently Trumping Ethical Norms: Teachers, Preachers, Pollsters and the Media Respond to Donald Trump and American Political Parties and Elections: A Very Short Introduction and Evaluating Campaign Quality: Can the Electoral Process Be Improved? 

From Obscurity to Oblivion: Running in the Congressional Primary chronicled Maisel’s unsuccessful bid for the Democratic nomination for Congress from Maine. His published articles have appeared in many political science journals and anthologies, including the American Political Science Review, American Journal of Political Science, the Journal of Politics, and the Legislative Studies Quarterly.

Maisel has served as president of the New England Political Science Association, twice a member of the Council of the American Political Science Association, and chair of the APSA’s research sections that focus on Political Organizations and Parties and on Legislative Studies. He has twice been awarded Fulbright Distinguished Lecturer grants, has been a Visiting Fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington and at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, and has served as a Visiting Professor at the University of Melbourne and Monash University in Australia, at Harvard University, and at Stanford University. 

Maisel and his wife, Patrice Franko, who is the Grossman Professor of Economics, Professor of Global Studies and current director of the Goldfarb Center at Colby, live in Rome, ME.

*11/02/18 L. Sandy Maisel, Colby College Rusty Atwood 2018-10-30 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Brit Vitalius, owner of Vitalius Real Estate Group and one of the state’s leading experts on the multi-family housing market, shared his observations and research on this real estate segment. He noted that housing challenges in Portland have brought out tensions in the community, particularly with those threatened by growth. Vitalius said that the combination of forces affecting real estate are challenging the region’s leadership to have a regional conversation about housing. According to Vitalius, these forces are the new tax code; interest rates, condo conversions, local regulations, affordable housing, and NIMBY opposition to development, particularly to proposed affordable housing units.

Using a presentation he recently made to the Maine Real Estate and Development Association (MEREDA), Vitalius detailed the rapid growth in the multi-family market, and observed that he believed that the market may be reaching the high point of the growth curve because he sees some cooling off of pricing. The bulk of the market is comprised of 2, 3, or 4-unit buildings. The median price for this market product in the East End (Munjoy Hill) is $650,000; in the West End, it’s $520,000. “Off the peninsula, it’s $395,000,” he said. Vitalius said that cap rates have remained steady as rents have increased. (The cap rate is a metric used in commercial real estate which reflects the ratio of net operating income to a property’s asset value—divide the operating income by the building’s sale price—and demonstrates the projected annual return on a real estate investment.)

Vitalius also said that the buyers of these properties tend to be varied, but the numbers of out-of-state buyers are less than is commonly thought. He said that the number of projected developments in Portland is much less than those planned outside of Portland. He said that investors outside of the city are much more patient. As the market levels off, he expects rents to remain close to what they are now, but still be affected by housing shortages. Current average rents in Portland apartments range from $900 per month for a studio space, to $1100 for a 1-bedroom, to $1,350 for a 2-bedroom, topped by 3-bedroom space at $1,500. As rents level off, Vitalius said that Section 8 subsidies have caught up with rent increases.

Vitalius said that critical keys to growth in the Portland area include a serious conversation about affordability, solutions to the region’s public transportation problems, and new approaches to the issue of housing density—and building height—in Portland.

10/26/18 Brit Vitalius, Affordable Housing in Portland Bob Martin 2018-10-30 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Erik Jorgensen

District Governor John LoBosco joined us on Friday, October 19 at the italian Heritage Center to bring us up to date on happenings in our sprawling District 7780, which extends from greater Portland through the New Hampshire Seacoast region, and into northeastern Massachusetts. Three months into his year of service, DG John has been focusing on refining the district’s strategic plan and promoting the many good works being conducted by clubs.

The plan, which was developed following input at “visioning sessions” held across the district, focuses on four areas: public image, membership, collaboration, and leadership.  

John noted that in the past year, our district membership has increased, which is good news. Currently the membership stands at about 1600. He is hoping to see that number ramp up to and pass 2000 and is urging clubs to shoot for 10% growth per year. This is a figure which has to be higher in fact, to offset the fact that Rotarians age and move. And while he did admit that the average Rotarian age is on the older side, he hastened to note that Rotarians tend to live longer. No joke. 

The challenges facing Rotary membership development are not unique in a world that is apparently moving faster than in the past. Lions Clubs and Kiwanis for example, are experiencing similar challenges. He spoke of some inter-club cooperative projects that have been successful and urged members to think broadly about how best to serve, even if it requires consorting with Lions. 

The District is promoting “Little Free Libraries,” those small “leave-one-take-one” book kiosks that have sprouted up in recent years. He believes that every club should consider installing and maintaining one of them. He is considering an interclub construction project, whereby clubs could join forces on a weekend and build a bunch of them together. 

He had good things to say about many of the club projects being undertaken in Portland and elsewhere, noting “Crutches4Africa,” “Hearts and Hands” and the new work that started in our club around finding ways to address the opioid use disorder crisis, among others. He also spoke about the rise of RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards). Watch for a new interactive map of international projects from the district on the Rotary7780.org website, with the goal of sharing expertise, best practices, and collaboration.

Finally, he announced a special district conference to occur next spring, a family picnic in June at Fort Williams Park, Cape Elizabeth. There will be kite flying, kids’ events, and a glimpse of the new Children’s Garden at the park, which the South Portland – Cape Elizabeth Rotary club has been involved in developing. Stay tuned for more information on that event.
 

 

(Photo L-R:  District Governor John LoBosco, President John Curran and Assistant Governor Bill Anderson.)

10/19/18 Rotary District Governor John LoBosco Erik Jorgensen 2018-10-24 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Dick Hall

President John Curran brought the meeting to order by welcoming 50 members and 4 visiting Rotarians to the Italian Heritage Center. David Small (photo at right) gave a baseball Invocation as his and the club's prayer to help the Red Sox in their quest to win the World Series. The Pledge of Allegiance was led by Ben Millick, followed by "My Country Tis of Thee" started from the audience.

Visiting Rotarians included District Governor John LoBosco, Tom Roberts and Assistant Governor Bill Anderson. Guests included Sheriff William King and first lady of the District, Sue LoBosco.


Sheriff William King (photo at left - on left with President John Curran) gave a presentation on his recent training at the Recovery Academy. He started by telling us he began using the term Substance Abuse Disorder, but through the training realized the term 'Substance Use Disorder' was more appropriate and the correct term to use.  He told us of the wide range of attendees, many of whom had struggled with past drug use themselves. He said attendees included social workers, spiritual people, public employees, and people who wanted to help a loved one and the community. William told us what occurred on each of the seven days of training, including some of the surprises for him along the way. He was totally in support of the training, and put his to work shortly after when trying to help a nephew who was struggling. William provided support, then connected to another support person, who was better able to connect with his nephew.


PP Dick Hall, with the help of DG LoBosco, awarded three Paul Harris Fellows (PHF). The first two were to PP Kris Rosado, PHF #5 (PHF +4) as he was the winner picked from the #4 Circle of Five. He was awarded PHF +5 for a personal contribution, awarding a PHF to a Rotarian in Germany who hosted Kris’s family. PP Bill Blount was awarded PHF +8, which is a striking pin with three rubies. Bill has made regular contributions himself, and also has had matching support from his previous employer.

(Photo above L-R: PP Kris Rosado, PP Dick Hall, PP Bill Blount and DG John LoBosco.)


 

David Ertz conducted the weekly raffle and DG LoBosco pulled Bruce Moore’s ticket. Alas, Bruce pulled a black jack, so no win.

(Photo above L-R: Bruce Moore, President John Curran and David Erzt.)

 


 

Paul Tully (photo at right) told us that 170 have already preregistered for the Veteran’s lunch for Nov. 9th at the HIBTB. He encouraged all Rotarians to preregister and we are expecting 400 and need a count. He told us we will have an excellent program, and Rotarians can feel free to donate to support the effort.


Joe Reagen (photo at left) asked us all to think about what it feels to give to others. Then he told us that the Long Creek Youth Center teens got that feeling when they prepared a dinner for the Rotarian volunteers. The teens decorated their space and prepared dinner. The teens got the good feeling of giving and the Rotarians felt appreciated.


President John announced a teaser. The New Mainer Task Force committee met today, before the meeting. They are looking at several opportunities to serve and plan to come forward to the club soon.


PP Bill Blount was surprised to be asked to lead us in song.  In keeping with David Small, he led us in a rousing rendition of "Take Me Out to the Ball Game."
 

10/19/18 Bits & Pieces Dick Hall 2018-10-23 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott

As the founder of Vitalius Real Estate Group and Designated Broker, Brit Vitalius has been representing buyers and sellers of multi-unit investments since 2004. He established the firm in 2011 to provide a full complement of residential, multi-family and commercial brokerage services to clients.

An active member of the community, Brit is a yearly presenter at the Maine Real Estate and Development Association’s Annual Forecast Conference for the multi-unit sector, and he is a leader and advocate in the landlord community. Brit is in his fourth term as President of the Southern Maine Landlord Association, a group which seeks to keep landlords up-to-date on important issues, trends and regulations. In the wake of the 2015 Noyes Street Fire, Brit became an active participant in multi-unit fire safety issues, and he was asked to serve on Portland’s Fire Safety Task Force. He is also a member of the Board of Maine Listings and personally owns and manages multi-unit investments in Portland and Yarmouth.

*10/26/18 Brit Vitalius, Affordable Housing in Portland Matt Wolcott 2018-10-23 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Ben Lowry

At last Friday’s meeting, we were all asked to find one of the “post-it” notes on our tables and write down what we knew about the company “IDEXX.” I wrote “pet pharmaceuticals”….my father, sitting next to me wrote, “I have no idea.” Tara Jenkins then spent the next 30 minutes providing some much-needed clarity to me, my father and the rest of the Portland Rotary Club. 

Founded in 1983, this now 2 billion-dollar business employs over 8000 people in several countries, with over 3200 of them in Westbrook, Maine.  Despite my own son being hired as an intern this past summer, I was surprised to learn that they do not make pet medications, but rather focus on the development of tests and testing equipment that are used by veterinarians and other providers throughout our pet-loving world. With 98% of homes treating pets like family, the race to keep these “fur babies” living longer lives is on. 221 patents show the extent of the efforts by the amazing folks at IDEXX to keep on the leading edge of this ever-burgeoning industry.  And, of course, to attract the talented research and development scientists, the IDEXX “lifestyle” is made to be very attractive, with a gorgeous new facility, which is set to expand with 800 new employees in Westbrook by 2020, offering dining, a gym and various clubs, as well as providing employees paid time off for community service opportunities.

IDEXX, despite 87% of their work going toward pets, also works on testing for clean water, as well as diagnostic equipment to keep our livestock healthy. With 39% of product sales to foreign nations, their ever-expanding efforts are truly becoming global.

As STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) students continue to matriculate world-wide, there seems to be some amazing possibilities right here in our own back yard for not only well-paying employment but to join IDEXX in their efforts to become “a place of purpose, innovation and opportunity.” 

 

(Photo L-R: Pete DeWitt, Tara Jenkins and President John Curran.)

10/12/18 Tara Jenkins, IDEXX Ben Lowry 2018-10-16 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Ben Lowry

President John Curran welcomed 48 members and 1 guest to last Friday's meeting. PP Russ Burleigh offered a thought-provoking poem as the invocation. The poem, entitled “Autumn,” was written in 1866 by an American poet, whose identity remained a mystery until Russ gave us enough clues to realize that the composer was Portland’s own Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.  

Tom Ranello led us in the Pledge to the American Flag and Meredith Small led us in an a cappella rendition of “My Country Tis of Thee.” 


It was reported to us that member David Smith suffered a minor stroke on October 6th and is recovering in New England Rehab. Most members of the club signed a card and we were encouraged to pay an afternoon visit to room 119A. Get well David!


PP Jim Willey introduced our newest member, Major Rhonda Ferreira (in photo at left), who is a member of the Salvation Army. Rhonda and her husband, who is soon to retire from the Army, live in Old Orchard and have a 15 year-old son. She is a past member of the Red Bank, NY Rotary Club, so she’s a veteran of “Service Above Self.”


Paul Tully (photo at right), Charlie Frair, Bruce Jones and so many others are working diligently on the organization of our annual Veteran’s Day luncheon, set for November 9th at noon at The Holiday Inn By-the-Bay. With over 100 folks already registered, we’re off to a great start but, with over 400 people expected, it is imperative that you pre-register on our Rotary website. The cost to veteran’s, as always, is free of charge, while the cost for others is $25. Last year, we had over 60% of the club volunteer the day of the event and the club needs your help again, so please do sign up to help. With two powerful speakers expected, this will once again be an excellent event so please plan on attending. Also, Bruce Jones is working to obtain sponsors, so if you know of an individual or business that may want to participate, please contact Bruce: bjones@cop-inc.com  or 650-3773.


PP Kris Rosado (at left) has been working with the United States Service Academies, most specifically West Point, in getting qualified young people accepted for these prestigious positions. If you know of a young high school student who may have some interest, please connect him/her with Kris so that he can explain the requirements for consideration. Contact: krisrosado67@gmail.com  or 443-257-7523


Gracie Johnston (at right), donning her very appropriate Red Sox jacket, took to the podium to offer up several opportunities to volunteer within the local community. On October 24th, there is a need for helpers at Preble Street, followed by a Recovery Coach Academy on the 27th, with classes at USM on Saturdays thereafter until certification is complete (see separate article this issue).  And it’s not too early to be thinking about our annual St. Vincent DePaul Soup Kitchen opportunity the day before Thanksgiving, on November 21st. And lastly, start getting your warm clothing ready so you can participate in our annual bell-ringing for The Salvation Army in December.


Rusty Atwood, with Jan Chapman (at left), had a chance to have a very nice (and wealthy) weekend, but could not draw the elusive Queen of Hearts for our weekly raffle. The pot thickens!

 


Liz Fagan offered more than just the banner of the Wakefield, Rhode Island Rotary Club from the podium, instead announcing that this club of a childhood friend would be joining our efforts in the 3H project. With this addition, we now have clubs from Maine, Rhode Island, Alaska, Florida and Oregon involved in our efforts to help those less fortunate in the Dominican Republic and beyond.
 

10/12/18 Bits & Pieces Ben Lowry 2018-10-16 04:00:00Z 0

Our Rotary District Governor John LoBosco joined the Rotary Club of South Portland-Cape Elizabeth, Maine, in 2005 and served as its President in 2010-11. He served on the club’s board for six years and as an Assistant Governor in the Portland area from 2013-2016. 

He enjoys working with clubs on long-term planning. His favorite Rotary event every year is the Rotary Christmas tree and wreath sale at Mill Creek Park in South Portland. 

John is an attorney at Unum Life Insurance Company of America in Portland. He is a graduate of Cornell University and Georgetown University Law Center. 

John resides in Cape Elizabeth with his wife, Sue (an adoption social worker). 
 

*10/19/18 District Governor John LoBosco 2018-10-16 04:00:00Z 0
The Rotary Club of Portland, along with Greater Portland Health, is hosting a Second 4-week session Recovery Coach Academy class.

Sessions started October 27 and are held at USM. We are hoping to get a few Rotarians to do this training and become recovery coaches.

This training is free and open to anyone who wants to participate and help those dealing with substance use disorder. We encourage Rotarians to please share this opportunity with others you know who might be good candidates.

To register, go to:  https://goo.gl/bcKuROeutmspR7zw1 
For more information, contact: Jesse Harvey at (207) 874-2141 x5031 or email at: jesse@journeyhousemaine.com 

Details are below:
 

 

Second Recovery Coach Academy 2018-10-10 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Alan Nye

President John Curran opened the meeting and called on Bruce Jones for the invocation, which focused on mastering civility – an especially important topic in our current political climate. After the Pledge of Allegiance, PP Russ Burleigh led us with the singing of "The Star Spangled Banner." President John introduced visiting guests and Rotarians and also made note of the June Rotarian birthdays and anniversaries in the club. (Russ pointed out that it was his 80th birthday – and Bob Traill was heard to call him just a young whipper-snapper.)


President John (photo at right) introduced our newest member: Marissa Fortier. Marissa comes from Saco and is the Deputy Director for the Michael Phelps Foundation. Welcome to the club!

 


The Raffle was conducted by Patty Erickson and Mike Reed (photo at left) won the chance at the prize by drawing the lucky queen of hearts. Unfortunately for him, Mike drew the 5 of clubs. Good try.

 


Charlie Frair (Photo at right) then spoke about the Veterans Appreciation Lunch coming up on November 9th at the Holiday Inn By-The-Bay. Replete with slides and handouts, Charlie made clear that the rationale behind the Veterans’ Appreciation Luncheon is as follows:

The purpose of the Annual Veterans’ Appreciation Luncheon is to honor, appreciate, acknowledge and thank Veterans for the military service to our country.

The excellent handout listed the intentions of the luncheon, the actions needed to fulfill the overall purpose, and the goals of this year’s luncheon as well as the 5-year goals of the luncheon. It’s abundantly clear that Charlie, his committee and all the volunteers have a clear focus and keen understanding of why this project is important to Veterans, our Rotary club, and the community at large. Hats off to all the hard-working Rotarians and volunteers who have made this project so successful!



Bob Clark
 (photo at left) spoke about the 10th Annual Kids & Claws Dinner to be held Tuesday, October 30th at the Portland Expo. This is a time for everyone to meet the Maine Red Claws and even shoot some hoops. Proceeds benefit the Boy & Girls Club, so contact Bob or go online for more information.



First VP Amy Chipman (photo at right) spoke about the recent invitation by District Governor John LoBosco to attend a Special District Assembly to discuss Foundation, Membership, and International Service Opportunities. It is scheduled for November 3rd at Husson University in Westbrook and the cost is free. All Rotarians are welcome. (see separate article this issue.)


Imogen Fullager (photo at left) was in town on a tour of Maine partially sponsored by her Rotary Club in Tasmania. A Social Economist by training, she has been working lately on issues relating to aquaculture, especially sea urchins. She contends that since Tasmania and Maine have opposite summers and similar marine resources, it might be possible to develop a fishery that could provide a steady year-round supply of a product by taking advantage of the alternate growing seasons in the hemispheres.  Her visit to Maine has taken her from Portland to Augusta to Lubec, and included time hosted by both PP Bowen Depke and Erik Jorgensen.


And last but not least, President John pointed out to the club that Portland Rotary has had 7 members of our club go on to become District Governor. This was just a preamble to his announcement that PP Dick Hall (photo at right) has thrown his hat in the ring to become a District Governor. In order to become a District Governor, the member must be recommended by his or her own club and so after politely asking Dick to step outside, the club voted unanimously to approve Dick’s application. Good luck Dick in becoming the 8th member of Portland Rotary to hold this esteemed position!
 

10/05/18 Bits & Pieces Alan Nye 2018-10-10 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Erik Jorgensen

On Friday, we had an update on passenger rail in Maine from Patricia Quinn, the executive director of the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority. She was joined by her colleague Jennifer Crosby, and together they told the story of the rail-based success story that is the Downeaster. 

The Downeaster has steadily become more central as an element of the region’s transportation infrastructure. Ticket revenues have been outpacing cost increases, and this last summer marked the first time that income has exceeded a million dollars for a single month. 75,000 visitors to Maine have arrived here by train in the past year, enjoying the recently refurbished cars.

Trains always require subsidy in order to be feasible, and the Downeaster is currently recovering 52% of its $23 million annual costs in fares. This puts the train among the most economically competitive passenger lines in the Amtrak system, where it also garners some of the highest customer satisfaction ratings of any route. Most of the operational funds come from the Federal government. 

The Downeaster has been shown to have a positive economic effect on both ends of the line, from Thompson’s Point concerts to the Boston Garden, where the last northbound departure of the day is often pushed back to accommodate a late game, making the train a viable option for Maine-based sports fans. In addition, the line is making efforts to promote travel within the state. A new “Discover Maine Ticket” is available that provides 10 trips between any Maine stations for just nineteen dollars. There are also more people taking advantage of the train in commuting to Portland from southern Maine. 

Our speakers remarked on several innovations that have come online recently, including a new layover facility in Brunswick and siding improvements near Yarmouth. Both of these have opened the door for a better schedule and more runs to service the towns north of Portland. The train is aiming to reach Rockland at some point, but that remains in the future.

Another possibility in the future is a mini-link to Westbrook, featuring light rail cars that could run from “Becky’s Diner to the Kohl’s plaza in Westbrook in 10 minutes”.  Such a spur could feed the Amtrak station at Thompson’s point, while also easing congestion on one of the most crowded corridors in the state. 

At the end of a lively series of questions from the audience, our own Jerry Angier made a pitch for the volunteers who serve as “train hosts,” helping with onboard customer service between Portland and Boston.

 

(Photo L-R: Linda Varrell, Patricia Quinn, Jennifer Crosby and President John Curran.)

10/05/18 Patricia Quinn and Jennifer Crosby, AMTRAK Erik Jorgensen 2018-10-10 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott

Tara Jenkins is responsible for the team that defines and implements the key experiences and practices that will attract employees to IDEXX and keep them highly engaged and retained. Her team drives the employee engagement strategy, the strategic talent planning process, the employee value proposition, corporate social responsibility, talent planning & assessment, the IDEXX performance experience, the IDEXX competency framework, innovative talent product development and deployment using business product management methodologies, talent analytics, and employee marketing and communications. 

Prior to joining IDEXX, Tara worked in all areas of the HR discipline with increasing levels of leadership responsibility. After graduating from Cornell University with an Industrial and Labor Relations degree, Tara began her career in a large investment management company, The Capital Group Companies, based in California. Over the past 20 years she has worked in a variety of industries, including head of HR at one of the largest regional law firms in the Northeast US and at a national environmental engineering firm. While at IDEXX over the past five years she has been a Senior HR Business Partner, the leader of Total Rewards and Communications, and the HR leader for the international business, working in the Netherlands.   She received her master’s degree in Organizational Development and Leadership while working at IDEXX. 
 

*10/12/18 Tara Jenkins, IDEXX Matt Wolcott 2018-10-10 04:00:00Z 0

Invitation from District Governor John LoBosco to join a Special District Assembly to discuss Foundation, Membership, and International Service Opportunities and Strategies!

WHO: All Rotarians are welcome! We are hoping, in particular, for a good turnout from Club Foundation, Membership, and International Service chairs.

WHEN: Saturday morning, November 3, 2018 from 8 a.m. until 12 noon.

WHERE: Husson University, 340 County Road, Westbrook, Maine.

COST: FREE

REGISTRATION: We need you to register so we know how many to expect. The venue can seat up to 135 people, so we will have a waiting list after we reach that number. Please register ASAP by either going to the District 7780 home page (under Events and Registration) or by going directing to https://rotary7780.org/event/joint-foundation---membership-seminar.

SPECIAL GUESTS: Julia Phelps, former Rotary International Director and current Foundation Trustee will share insights into current happenings in Evanston regarding the Foundation. Assistant Regional Rotary Foundation Coordinator, Greg Roche, also will join us to connect with you and explain how he can be a valuable resource for us.

AGENDA:
8:00 - 8:30 Social (coffee and muffins)
8:30 - 9:00 Julia Phelps, "A Week in the Life of a Foundation Trustee"
9:00 - 10:30 Joint Session
10:30 - 10:45 Break
10:45 - 12:00 Breakouts

The first half of the morning will be a joint session with presentations on the Foundation and Membership. After a break, we will have three concurrent breakouts: Foundation, Membership, and International Service. The International Service breakout will focus on opportunities for Rotarians to travel abroad to engage in hands-on service. On the Foundation side, we will be talking about District Grants, Global Grants, Polio Plus, the Peace Scholars Program, the Annual Fund, and Major Gifts. As for Membership, we’ll be discussing strategies to achieve our Governor’s challenge to increase membership throughout the district by at least 5% this year. We will have plenty of time for questions and dialogue among the participants.

This is a great opportunity to roll-up your sleeves and connect with your colleagues from around our district to learn and share. WE HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE!

FOR MORE INFORMATION: For more information, contact the event chair, Lawrence Furbish at 207-490-6840, lkfurbish@mac.com.
 

Special District Assembly 2018-10-02 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Tom Talbott

PP Roxane Cole welcomed our guest speaker for the day, Catherine Menyhart, Founder of Making Space, LLC. The daughter of a Rotarian father, Catherine was introduced early on to “Service Above Self,” remembering all too well selling Christmas trees on chilly nights. It was also thru Rotary that she was treated to intercultural experiences as a very young girl. At the age of 2, her family hosted their first international exchange student, the first of 25 that Catherine would come to know in her home. Learning, and understanding, different cultures, would become a devotion that she now shares, teaches and coaches on a professional level. 

What do you think of when you think of “culture.” The audience volunteered words such as people, language, customs, music, traditions, values, education, clothing, food. Catherine agreed, and then noted that all of these items are still just the tip of the iceberg, that there is so much you don’t see below the surface that makes understanding different cultures so fascinating and challenging. 

Catherine set forth a series of propositions.

First: “A shared set of values, norms, behaviors and practices held and expressed by a particular group of people.” 

With an American father and British mother, Catherine noted that most people would say, “What’s the difference?” In fact, it was considerable. Her father was an advocate of the American Dream – go out and make your way, go for it, be successful. Her mother – you stay where you were born. 

Second: “The ability to communicate and behave effectively and appropriately where there are cultural differences.”

Some people, or businesses, may have the best of intentions, but the way they go about it can create conflicts. “Let’s get it done” is great, but getting it done appropriately can be tricky.

One can certainly think of Rotary’s work on Polio Plus, where in some tribal cultures there was great suspicion and resistance to the inoculations.   

Third: “Core Intellectual Competencies.”    

A. Self-Awareness. Explore your own identity. How were you conditioned? How was conflict dealt with in your life, in your family, school, work?

B. Awareness of Others. For example, the respect the Japanese have for elders.

C. Emotional intelligence and mindful awareness. When someone walks right up to you and crowds you, crossing that invisible line into your personal space, how do you handle it?

D. Intercultural Bridging. Learning and building understanding and empathy for others.

With a series of diagrams on the slide show, Catherine showed a set of different cultural differences that are very common:

Direct Communication. Say what you mean, mean what you say. What you say is more important than how you say it.
Indirect Communication.
Story telling. How it is said is more important that what is said.  Yes, may mean no or maybe.

Dealing with problems. Some see obstacles and plow through. Others deal with problems by going around it. 
Concepts of time. We are accustomed to meetings at specific times and being on time. If we say 1pm, the meeting is 1pm. In other parts of the world, 1pm is a rather flexible window of time.

Catherine suggested that we explore our own individual cultural identities, urging that we learn to observe in a neutral manner, suspending judgement, pausing and reflecting. Develop empathy and mindfulness of others. 

It was here that she asked who was familiar with the “Platinum Rule.” We know the Golden Rule - “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” The Platinum version takes a similar, but slightly altered, perspective. “Do unto others as they would like to do unto themselves.” To do this, you need to understand the framework of their culture and their communication styles.  What is accepted here, may offend somewhere else. As we know, it can be complicated. Catherine gave us a lot to think about! 
 

 

(Photo L-R: PP Roxane Cole, Catherine Menyhart and President John Curran.)

09/28/18 Catherine Menyhart, Making Space, LLC Tom Talbott 2018-10-02 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Gathered at the Gateway Community Center, President John Curran welcomed 36 members and 2 guests to our Friday Rotary meeting; PP Tom Talbott (photo at left) led our invocation, invoking memories of his high school yearbook quotation from a long-forgotten rock band. (Sic tempus transit.) We sang 'America The Beautiful" and enjoyed our lunch, catered by the Long Creek Youth Center culminary team. 


Jan Chapman (photo at right) encouraged volunteers to join our reading program at Lyseth Elementary School in partnership with Maine Law.

 


Charlie Frair reminded us of the Veterans Appreciation Lunch on November 9 at the Holiday Inn by the Bay. Pre-registration is required (call 899-6342, or sign-up on the website, portlandrotary.org) with no charge for Veterans, $25 for non-veterans. 


David Small (In photo at left with Patty Erickson) won the opportunity to search for the elusive Queen of Hearts to secure the week’s pot of $1,085, but was only able to find the 9 of Hearts. The pot dost increase in size.


Roger and Liz Fagan, along with President John Curran, presented a report on their fascinating trip to Kosovo earlier this year. This Rotary-sponsored effort focused on the areas of hearing loss, speech pathology, and prosthetic devices for limb loss in a country still suffering from the traumas of war. Roger reported that seven students from Heimerer College, which has the only speech pathology program in Kosovo, shadowed and participated in the hearing clinic at the public hospital. Roger said that he asked for no more than 30 patients, but they brought him 65. “Luckily, I brought 100 hearing aids,” he said. Roger related that many people with hearing loss also suffer with PTSD, brought on by the extended conflict in the country. He also said that they discovered one difference in medical practice there: “We learned that Doctors are not paid much,” he said. “As a consequence, they take money under the table.” Roger said that they were sensitive to the fact that the hearing aids they brought with them had apparently violated some customs restrictions. When Roger and Liz met with the Prime Minister of Kosovo, Ramush Haradinaj, Roger apologized for violating any rules. The Prime Minister asked to see the devices, and upon looking at them, he pounded his fist into his hand and said: “This has my blessing!”

President John reported that the staff at the Kosovo hospital was well trained and capable in prosthetics and orthotics, but they had no budget, which limits their impact. John reported that Rotaract students acted as translators for the team, and they also had the opportunity to meet with five different Rotary clubs, enlisting their participation in the project for future programs. He said that the Yarmouth, ME club will be responsible for going forward with the project in Kosovo. He shared pictures of patients who suffered limb loss both from congenital disorders and the effect of land mines. “The kids are great to work with,” he said. “They are very inquisitive.” He reported that the project was able to provide new hand models for patients to experiment with, as well as to measure patients for later fitting with a device. “We saw a lot more loss of limbs above the elbow,” he said. “Something our 3D printing device is not able to handle.” As a result of meeting with Kosovo Rotary Clubs, they were able to identify other sources of 3D printers in the country which will help in addressing this need.

Liz Fagan shared the travails of traveling in countries where one doesn’t know the language, relying on Google Translator to book flights. Google wasn’t much help, she reported, since her effort to buy a plane ticket ended up with the purchase of a tractor. Liz commented on her surprise at the number of NATO forces still in the country, their numbers as large as the local police presence. She said that when the team arrives in the Dominican Republic, they have a plan, and can immediately execute it. In Kosovo, however, their plans for clinics were interrupted to accommodate the passion of Dr. Gani Abazi, a Kosovan doctor now studying at Harvard. Dr. Gani arranged for Liz and Roger to meet with the Prime Minister, and they appeared on Kosovo national television. The resulting publicity not only highlighted the work of Rotary, but also moved Roger and Liz to Kosovan Rock Star status where they were recognized on the street, offered meals, ice cream, and other refreshment, but also thanked for their efforts. 

Even though Liz and Roger are now home, Liz is engaged in extensive follow-up to help the students at Heimerer College in Pristina, Kosovo. “They offered me a job teaching at the college,” Liz said. “But I told them it was a long commute.” Liz related that most people in Kosovo speak English, but it’s difficult to fund tuition for Kosovans to come to the U.S. for school. Consequently, she is helping to provide them with ways to improve their education in speech pathology. Liz put out a call to her speech pathology colleagues, and twelve responded that they would do guest lectures in Pristina. She is also receiving boxes of text books, earlier versions of diagnostic tests, and other materials to help build a resource library at Heimerer. “Our house is a mess,” Roger reported, but it was pretty clear listening to them tell their story that they don’t mind a bit.

 

(Photo L-R: President John Curran, Drs. Liz  and Roger Fagan.)
 

09/28/18 Bits & Pieces Bob Martin 2018-10-02 04:00:00Z 0
Jennifer Crosby is the marketing and sales coordinator at the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority. She received her Bachelor of Science in Communications degree from The University of Southern Maine, and currently lives in Portland, ME. Jennifer volunteers and serves as Vice President on the Board of directors for The Theater Project a non-profit community theater in Brunswick, ME. In her free time Jennifer enjoys spending time with her family and her miniature dachshund Chihuahua, Willow. 
*10/05/18 Jennifer Crosby, Amtrak 2018-10-02 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jake Bourdeau

Ms. Tess Chakkalakal, Ph.D is an Associate Professor of Africana Studies and English at Bowdoin College.  At the Rotary meeting on Friday, she presented about several of the most influential African American authors in American history discussing many of their theories and influences.  Ms. Chakkalakal introduced authors such as Booker T. Washington (1856-1915), William E.B. DuBois (1868-1963), and a lesser known author Charles W. Chestnutt (1858 – 1932).  According to Ms. Chakkalakal, these three writers were some of the most influential people helping to try and solve the race problem in America over the years, and she touched on how each of them had a somewhat different approach or solution. 

Later in Ms. Chakkalakal’s presentation, she focused on Mr. Chestnutt’s history and writings, and how he may have been ahead of his time.  She noted how Chesnutt put forth yet a different way to think about race and equality that may be more relevant today than ever. According to Ms. Chakkalakal, Charles Chestnut advocated a revolutionary and unpopular idea at the time: amalgamation and intermarriage were the answers to race problems in America and elsewhere.  Once a society became similar in color and family history over the years, there may be no base for racial disagreement and conflict.  In his transcript to a highly diverse “Future America,” Chesnutt wrote about a world in which race is not a problem, and if no one can see a difference, differences are no longer important or relevant. 

Ms. Chakkalakal noted that Chestnutt’s novels and stories were often written in a style of literary irony in that they are primarily marriage plots where bi-racial partners fall in love, are prohibited to be together by family and/or social customs, and their lives end in tragedy. 

According to Ms. Chakkalakal, she believes Chestnutt may not have been embraced by the movement that celebrated race differences and achievements in the African American movements of the early 1900s when William DuBois was embraced, and for this reason, Chestnutt is not widely studied today.  According to Ms. Chakkalakal, Chestnutt would have thought that celebrating the differences in races could actually worsen a racial situation. Basically, checking boxes about one’s race could make a problem worse, because if everyone lays claim to race, then differences appear to matter more (and not less) in a society.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Photo L-R: Tess Chakkalakal, 1st VP Amy Chipman, and Bob Martin.)
 

09/21/18 Tess Chakkalakal, Bowdoin College Jake Bourdeau 2018-09-26 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Tom Talbott

First Vice-President Amy Chipman called the “jam-packed” meeting to order at the Clarion Hotel, bringing PP Cyrus Hagge to the podium for the Invocation (photo at right). Cyrus first had an announcement of great import – a $5000 check from the White Pine Foundation – a nonprofit/nonpartisan organization dedicated to “advancing good civics and free enterprise.” Cyrus asked PP Laura Young to come up and receive the check, which will go to the purchase of books for our school reading programs, a program that Laura was instrumental in developing this past year. With that, Cyrus lamented the carnage of squirrels on our roads the past few weeks. He went looking for a few words to say about this phenomenon, and (his words) ran across this one. “May we get what we want, may we get what we need, but may we never get what we deserve.” Nuts. 

John Houghton led us in the Pledge of Allegiance, and Matt Wolcott directed our chorus of “God Bless America.”  7 visiting Rotarians and 2 guests joined the 46  members in attendance.


After lunch, Amy set the tone for a big pay day by going immediately to the raffle. Enlisting 2nd VP Ellen Niewoehner (on left in photo at left) as the custodian of the cards, Ellen had our guest speaker drawing the “halfway to victory” ticket. Guest Mark Foster (at right in photo at left), who will be joining our club soon, overcame the PTG odds factor and earned the right to pull a card. With $1042 on the line, the 8 of Hearts got the better of him, and the prize remained in the bank.


Rusty Atwood (photo at right) updated us on the Veterans Appreciation Lunch. Friday, Nov 9th 12noon, Holiday Inn By The Bay. All Vets are complimentary guests, $25 Non-Vets. We have two top-notch speakers. First, military historian Captain John Bratton. Our keynote speaker is Maj. Gen. John Libby, Retired.  Flyers are on the tables – please take and distribute. Rusty added a personal note by thanking all those who participated in the ALS Walk a few weeks back.


Elise Hodgkin made everyone aware that our PP Loretta Rowe’s surgery was successful, and she is resting and recovering.  Everyone sends their best wishes!


Gracie Johnston (photo at left) talked about serving dinner at Preble Street this upcoming Wed (Sept 26)....we could use some more help! 5 people signed up so far, so please let us know. 


John Knupp from South Portland/Cape Elizabeth Rotary Club joined us for lunch, as well as to remind us about the “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer” will take place on Oct. 14th at Fort Williams Park, Cape Elizabeth. Registration at 9am, Walk at 1030am. FMI: PortlandMEStrides@cancer.org


Roger Fagan (photo at right) asked for assistance on Oct 6th, loading crutches into containers for the “Crutches4Africa” program. Tony Wagner, a member of the South Portland/Cape Elizabeth Rotary is the contact person if you can assist. Contact Tony at tony.bellner@gmail.com


Jan Chapman (photo at left) thanked Cyrus for the $5000 Grant for reading books, perfectly timed for her announcement regarding sign-ups for the Lyseth School Reading program. Sheets are on the tables for the Oct, Nov, and Dec sessions. We could also use someone who speaks Spanish.


Dave Putnam (photo at right) spoke about the monthly program at Long Creek Youth Development Center. On the 3rd Tuesday each month, if you can spend 2 hours from 6p-8p visiting the young men of the Cedar unit, it means a lot to them. Typically, a night of games, pizza, soda.  Dave acknowledged the dedication of PP Jim Willey and Mike Fortunato who have given so much time and effort into LCY development programs. Join in if you can!


PP Laura Young (photo at left) briefed everyone on the Membership Committee’s strategy for bringing in members, as well as helping new members develop in the club.  Check out the recent Rotary Magazine – great article on this topic. If you have someone interested, let Laura know.  Our club will host New Member Orientation meetings, including people who have not applied.  First one will be Oct 12, next Nov 16, usually at 11am before our club meeting.  We are going to renew our mentor program. In January, all new members will meet to give us some feedback. Next May 17th, the new members will bring back an old tradition and take over the club with their own special program.  We are also looking at teaming up with Propel with joint events, great chance to meet new people. 

Laura has added a side note – “Makeshift Coffee House”, with 6 meetings coming up, outside of Rotary. Political yes, political no. Democrats, Republicans, Independents coming together to share and talk thru issues. More details coming!


Our Club Protection Officer, Nan Heald (at left in photo at right), together with Bob Knupp (at right in photo at right), from So Po/Cape Eliz Rotary talked to us in tandem about our club’s “Protection Policy.” As Rotarians, we interact with many people, including young adults and children. While many organizations have their own system of background checks before there is interaction, i.e. Long Creek, other programs do not. The reading program is a good example. Nan sought the consultation of the Maine Can Do Group, experienced in the area of sexual harassment.  The object is to create awareness of the problem and guidance for employers. The Portland Rotary was the first club and so far, the only club in the state to sign the pledge drafted by the District.  In summary, we strive to act in accordance with the 4-Way Test. Be respectful of each other, guests, those who serve us our meals…wherever we are.  We want to be “Rotary Correct.”
 

09/21/18 Bits & Pieces Tom Talbott 2018-09-26 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Roxane Cole
Catherine Menyhart, M.Ed., has worked in international education and intercultural training and coaching for over 15 years. She is the founder of Making Space LLC and devoted to supporting intercultural development and mindful leadership practices in leaders, educators, and learners of all ages, so that they may become catalysts for positive change in their organizations and communities. Previously, as the Manager of Training and Development at the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE), Catherine managed learning and development programs for 900+ worldwide employees, specializing in intercultural communication and leadership in the workplace. She has also worked as the Resident Coordinator of the CIEE Study Center in Dakar, Senegal. She holds a master’s degree in Education from the University of Southern Maine and taught French at Casco Bay High School, an Expeditionary Learning School in Portland, Maine. She received her B.A. in International Relations and French from Grand Valley State University. She is an IDI Qualified Administrator and Senior Facilitator of Personal Leadership.
*09/28/18 Catherine Menyhart, Founder Making Space, LLC Roxane Cole 2018-09-26 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Julie L'Heureux

President John Curran opened the Rotary meeting at the Clarion by welcoming 45 members, 1 visiting Rotarian and 2 guests. Charlie Frair presented the invocation, recalling the wise words from his recently-deceased father, given when he was in need of inspiration. “When the going gets tough, the tough get going,” led Charlie to become a high school varsity athlete. “Our world is round, so what seems like the end, is really just a beginning,” are words that consoled Charlie at a time when he had experienced a personal loss. Our patriotic song, “My Country ‘Tis of Thee” was led by PP Bill Blount.

President John introduced Rotary guests and described how our club is reaching out to collaborate with community organizations. He welcomed Alain J. Nahimana, the Executive Director​ of the Immigrant Welcome Center in Portland and Merissa Fortier, who is the associate director of the Michael Phelps Foundation, with a mission to improve education about children and water safety, located in Portland. Also, he reminded the club about the contact for Crutches4Africa being Roger Fagan. Long Creek Development Center's game night is on Tuesday, Sep. 18th.


PP Bill Blount and assisted chorus, led a singing of the “Grand State of Maine” song. (Photo at right: PP Bill, Gracie Johnston, Erik Jorgensen, Dave Putnam and Nan Heald.)


 

Visiting Rotarian from Tampa, Florida-  Larry Vickman exchanged Rotary banners with President John.

(Photo at left L-R: Larry Vickman and President John Curran.)

 


Thanks to Gracie Johnston (On left side of photo at right), the Community Service chair, for organizing the Preble Street Rotary volunteers. Ali Brauner (On right side of photo at right), volunteer manager at Preble Street was with us to tell how the program was going. She thanked the Rotarians for their volunteer services and described the essential volunteer work needed to help with the meal services for the hundreds of people who are served at the Preble Street Resource Center Soup Kitchen on Oxford Street. “The need for volunteers continues to grow.” she said, "The Resource Center is extending the services for all three meals served each day. Portland Rotary volunteers at the kitchen from 3:30-6:30, on the last Wednesday of the month. Every day, Preble Street serves 1,000 meals, seating 350 people at each meal. Over the past six years, Portland Rotary has provided 1, 500 hours of volunteer help. Volunteers should sign up in advance of the 4th Wednesday or any day when they can work, so the Preble Street staff can organize their schedules accordingly. Email: volunteer@preblestreet.org or check the logon at portlandrotary.preblestreet.volunteerhub.com 


Paul Tully reported updates to the Second Annual Veterans' Appreciation Lunch to be held on  November 9, 2018, at the Holiday Inn on Spring Street, at 12 noon. A committee made contact with several military leaders and they have confirmed the speakers for this year’s program who are Major General John W. Libby, retired adjutant General of the Maine Army National Guard and Captain Jonathan D. Bratten, Command Historian, of the Maine Army National Guard. Captain Bratten will speak about World War I history. Publicity has been offered by Maine Today. The goal is to exceed 300 veteran guest participants.


1st  Vice President Amy Chipman introduced Francine Laporte (On right side in photo at right) as the newest Portland Rotarian. In fact, Amy and Francine first met at a Rotary social program hosted by Charlie Frair. Francine grew up in Brooklyn and has traveled across the United States, Canada, Japan, Europe, Central and South America, before finding her second home in Oaxaca, Mexico. She volunteers as an English language tutor, and is a fund raiser for economically disadvantaged students and an immigrant advocate. We cordially welcome Francine to the Rotary Club of Portland!


With Bruce Jones conducting the weekly raffle, that has reached $1,010, Meredith Small got an opportunity to try and find the Queen of Hearts, but the elusive queen just did not want to be found and the pot continues to grow.
 

09/14/18 Bits & Pieces Julie L'Heureux 2018-09-18 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Dick Hall

Mark Roberts, a police officer for 18 years and now a Senior Fire Investigator with the State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFMO) along with his Accelerant Detection K9 partner Deacon, gave a fascinating talk about their work.

Deacon is a 4-year-old yellow Labrador retriever, who works with Mark as part of the investigation in the State of ME Fire Marshall’s Office. Maine has 500 fires annually, and with 12 investigators, reviews 150-200 possible arsons. Maine typically has 11-21 fire-related fatalities per year. Investigations often focus on accelerants, and K9s are trained and certified for 50-60 different accelerants. After the dog detects, confirmations of the chemical are done by the Maine lab. The dogs provide evidence in the investigation and can quickly work a large area in 2-3 minutes.

We were surprised to learn that Deacon is trained using his basic hunting instinct. He finds accelerants and earns his food doing so. His only food is given when he works. This means he  trains every day, when not actually working a fire scene. He is a very happy dog, as dogs love to work.

Science has demonstrated that dogs have 220 million olfactory sensors while humans have only 5 million. 1/8 of a dog’s brain is dedicated to scent determination and scent discrimination. Dogs smell things independently and can keep the layers separate. Deacon does not smell pizza, he independently smells crust, sauce, cheese, meat etc. Dogs are entirely unbiased, so he makes objective decisions all the time. People are more trusting of the investigations by dogs than by people. 

State Farm Insurance pays for the Arson Dog Program which was established with the Maine State Police under the guidelines of the Maine Criminal Justice Academy. The Maine program is the longest running and one of only two arson training programs in the country. All dogs are second chance, second career. Deacon failed as a disability dog as he was too high energy, but that made him well suited as an arson dog.

Labrador retrievers are used as there is no worry about dog bites, people are comfortable with Labs, and Labs can scent the crowd to detect bystanders who may have accelerants. There is still no technology yet to replace dogs.

For more information, go to: https://www.maine.gov/dps/fmo/investigations/index.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Photo L-R: PP Bob Traill, President John Curran, Officer Mark Roberts and his K-9 partner, Deacon.)


 

09/14/18 Mark Roberts, K9 Arson Investigations Dick Hall 2018-09-17 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Tess Chakkalakal [pronounced “Chah-KAHL-ickle”] is the Peter M. Small Associate Professor of Africana Studies and English at Bowdoin College. She has published widely on nineteenth-century African American and American literature. She is the author of Novel Bondage: Slavery, Marriage, and Freedom in Nineteenth-Century America (Illinois, 2011) which earned the Robert K. Martin Prize for best book on American literature and “a must read” title by Choice.  

Her book, Novel Bondage, takes apart the interconnections between marriage, slavery, and freedom, as conveyed in nineteenth-century novels and short stories by black and white authors. She examines how these early novels established literary conventions for describing the domestic lives of American slaves and their search to fulfill their aspirations for personal and civic freedom. Her work also focuses on Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin, a book that was written in the shadow of Bowdoin College. Prof. Chakkalakal’s writings challenge readers to reconsider the “marital work” of nineteenth-century fiction and its historical role in shaping our understanding of the literary and political meaning of marriage.

She is co-editor of Jim Crow, Literature, and the Legacy of Sutton E. Griggs (Georgia, 2013). Professor Chakkalakal has earned fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Social Science and Humanities Research Council, Duke University, Emory University, and the Mellon Foundation. Before coming to Bowdoin in 2008, Professor Chakkalakal taught at Williams College and Bowling Green State University.
 

*09/21/18 Tess, Chakkalakal, Bowdoin College Bob Martin 2018-09-17 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Traill

Mark Roberts is a Senior Fire Investigator with the State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFMO) and an Accelerant Detection K9 handler. 

The mission of the Office of State Fire Marshal is to prevent loss of life and property for those that live, work and visit in the State of Maine. Their goal is to protect against the devastation of fire, explosions and life safety hazards with integrity and fairness through fire prevention, public education, planning, research, investigation and enforcement of enacted laws and rules. 

As an agency, the State Fire Marshal’s Office is responsible for determining the cause of fires statewide and the investigation of arsons, explosions and fatalities. Mark has been with the office since 2008 and worked as a patrol officer in both Scarborough and Cape Elizabeth prior to that.He and his canine partner, four-year old Deacon, are one of only two K9 teams in the state and have worked together for two years. Deacon is a second career dog, having been acquired from a service dog agency in Michigan.

Mark will be addressing Maine’s Arson K-9 Program.

 

*09/14/18 Mark Roberts, Office of the State Fire Marshal Bob Traill 2018-09-14 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Terri St. Angelo

President Joh Curran welcomed 53 members on a beautiful summer day, when we officially met for our meeting at our new home for this year, The Clarion Hotel.

Invocation was presented by PP Russ Burleigh; the pledge to the flag was led by PP Roxane Cole and back in the spotlight to lead our a capella patriotic song was PP Russ Burleigh.


We celebrated the September Rotarian Birthdays by singing “Happy Birthday” and acknowledged the Rotarian Anniversaries with loud applause.


President John gave special note to Rotarians doing “good work.” Jesse Harvey manned 3 tables at Deering Oaks in honor of the Overdose Awareness Day.


The Maine Cornhole Tournament Event update was given by Terri St. Angelo (photo at right). The event brought in $2334. For the first year AND for this kind of event, that’s awesome! We now have the building blocks and game boards to really expand for next year. Our partner, NYA, will be working with us to allocate the funds soon. We had 26 teams participate. 11 Guests to support the teams. 16 volunteers from Rotary, NYA and the Boys and Girls Club. A special thanks goes out to the “Board Guys!” Russell Voss, Ben Delcourt and friends. Without the boards, we wouldn’t be able to play. Photos were placed on tables for all to see all the smiles at the event. 


Gracie Johnston (photo at left) spoke about the highlighted committee of the week – Community Service. She says this committee and what it stands for is the lifeblood of Rotary. All Rotarians recognize giving back to the community is so important. Some of the things the committee is working on this year: 

Opiod Crisis Initiative – Bring other clubs together to understand and educate on this crisis. 

Preble Street Resource Center Soup Kitchen – Always the last Wednesday of the Month. They are working on making it easier for volunteers to get there. Please consider joining to help on this night.

Thanksgiving Dinner at St. Vincent’s – Cook, prepare and serve dinner to homeless in the area. 

Salvation Army holiday bell ringers – Fun time sharing volunteer time with fellow Rotarians

Opiod Task Force – The group received a $5000 grant from the District and $1000 from Portland Rotary to start the Recovery Coach Academy.  Jesse Harvey was sent to a training for Recovery coaches. The next step is offering classes for people to become a recovery coach in the area. Attendance at 4 classes is needed to become certified. The Committee is hoping to spread this coaching to impact to as many people as possible and work with as many groups as possible to educate on the crisis and stigma.

Gracie ended her update by saying how proud she is of the Community Service members.


Jesse Harvey (photo at right) gave an update on the first ‘Train the Trainers Recovery Coach Academy’ class. Most attendees were from Portland, Sanford and Lewiston. He hopes to pair these students with Rotary Clubs to help spread the education to others. 


President John announced that there will be an Exchange Student coming from Germany and is in need of a temporary host. Contact John Curran for more information: curraj1@mmc.org


On Friday, Sep. 14th, there will be a new member orientation at 11 am at the Clarion Hotel. If you have any potential members or people that may be interested and want more information about the club, please attend.


Our weekly raffle was up to $980. Bob Fowler (at right in photo at left) gave Matt Tassey (at left in photo at left) the chance to pick the queen of hearts, but he was only able to find the 6 of hearts. 

 


Joe Reagan (photo at right) announced that he would be hosting the “Inside Maine” talk show on Saturday, 9/08, 10-1pm. If you would like to listen to any of the podcasts, follow this link. http://wgan.com/podcasts/categories/podcasts-inside-maine/    Joe also announced the Veteran’s Luncheon will be on Nov. 9th. Details of the program will be announced soon.


PP Bill Blount teased us with a John Denver song, but did not have the words for us, so we will have a song next week.
 

09/07/18 Bits & Pieces Terri St. Angelo 2018-09-11 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bowen Depke

A shout out to the Maine Outdoor Challenge crew that is still paying dividends. Michael Reed obtained a Fishing Charter for the live auction. His long-term friend/client Kurt Christensen (Christensen Custom Homes) kindly donated a day-trip of fishing on his lobster boat in Casco Bay.  That auction winner was, PP Bowen Depke, who set out with his two sons and a friend at 8 AM to go 13 miles off shore for the adventure. By the calculation of his youngest son William, they caught around 125 fish, 2 sharks and 11 species. What a great trip to put in their family memory album. A thank you to all for the adventure!

 

 

(Mike Reed and a young fisherman.)

 

 

 

 

(One of Bowen's sons displaying his shark "catch.")

 

 

(Another of Bowen's sons displaying his unusual catch.)

 

 

(This team had quite a few catches of the day.)

It Was a Fish Tale! Bowen Depke 2018-09-11 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Alan Nye

With an introduction by PP Roxane Cole, Catherine Lewis – Board Director and Director of Education of the Medical Marijuana Caregivers of Maine – spoke to our Rotary club about Maine’s Medical Marijuana program. Of interest to Rotarians is the fact that Catherine is a past President of the Hallowell Rotary Club and is a Paul Harris Fellow.

Medical Marijuana Caregivers of Maine (MMCM) is a trade association dedicated to the support and promotion of safe access to medical marijuana. Catherine spent most of her talk attempting to educate and advocate for the proper use of marijuana to alleviate chronic pain, cancer, seizures, severe nausea, PTSD and other conditions. Catherine explained that after a severe automobile injury left her and her husband with long-lasting injuries and pain, they became medical cannabis patients. The success of this treatment prompted them to become medical marijuana caregivers to help others.

Catherine helped to dispel some of the myths about cannabis and stated that many of us have been lied to for years about marijuana’s potential harmful effects and seldom told about the many benefits that proper use can provide. She stated that most of her patients are elderly and many suffer from cancer, are in wheelchairs, have late stage MS, have Alzheimer’s or spend their days in chronic pain.

Catherine’s business, Homegrown Healthcare, specializes in cannabis and alternative therapies. Her goal is to educate people about the many symptoms that cannabis can alleviate and how it can be used in conjunction with or as an alternative to traditional medicine and medications.

Catherine brought some samples of products to show that cannabis use can be without the stereotypical “joint” that must be smoked resulting in a high. Instead, the medicinal properties of cannabis can be made into other products with no resulting smell or euphoria – so that no one needs know that you’re even using the product. She showed us lozenges in different flavors, tinctures to be placed under the tongue, salves and lotions for external use, bath additives, patches and other products.

For additional information, go to: www.homegrownhealthcare.net

(Photo: PP Roxane Cole, Catherine Lewis and President John Curran.)

09/07/18 Catherine Lewis, Medical Marijuana Caregivers of Maine  Alan Nye 2018-09-11 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Roxane Cole

After suffering severe injuries in a motor vehicle accident in 1990, both Catherine and her husband Glenn fell victims to modern medicines’ pharmaceutical trap. She and her husband began their journey with medical cannabis in 2002 to help Glenn eliminate about 9 different drugs he had been prescribed over the years for his injuries. Glenn became an official patient in 2009 under the care of Dr. Sulak. Catherine became his caregiver. Seeing the amazing results that cannabis provided him and their ability to produce such a great medicine, together in 2010 they started HomeGrown HealthCare, Apothecary and Learning Center now located in Winthrop, Maine. As caregivers, they are dedicated to sharing their knowledge with folks suffering from a variety of ailments, including Chronic Pain, Cancer, PTSD and Addiction Recovery. They have been featured in the documentary The Science vs The Stigma in 2011 and on the Kimball & Keyser Report (A Caregivers Path) 7/31/13, Weediquette / S2 EP6 (Reefer Rehab) 9/23/16, TODAY’s “Undercovered” series (Can marijuana help wean addicts off heroin and other opiates?) 5/18/17, and most recently in Season 2 of The Sacred Plant (Healing Secrets Examined) 7/18.

In 2011 Catherine joined the board of Medical Marijuana Caregivers of Maine (MMCM) Trade Association as the Director of Education and in 2015, she became the President of the Board, helping to shape legislation and communication with the overseeing State Departments and Municipalities. She volunteers many hours in the community and at the State House testifying for the medical cannabis program. With the help of many others, they created the largest East Coast Medical Industry Trade Show that has run for the last 7 years. She also sits on the Board of Advisers for New England Cannabis Network (NECANN). Catherine has been educating others with classes and workshops through a variety of industry shows, town hall meetings, fairs and the University of Maine at Augusta (Klahr Center) with MMCM and now at their Learning Center in Winthrop Maine. Enabling people to learn the laws, patient/caregiver rights, business rules, cultivation and preparation of cannabis for better health and natural wellness. Catherine most recently was instrumental in the crafting and recent passing of LD 1539 and LD 238. These two bills will help improve Maine’s Medical Cannabis program, creating a new legitimacy for the businesses within the program.

*09/0718 Catherine Lewis, Medical Marijuana Caregivers of Maine Roxane Cole 2018-09-07 04:00:00Z 0
Two of our members received recognition in the Portland Press Herald as a woman-owned business, who mean business (excerpts taken from the newspaper article):
 
Roxane Cole, who owns Falmouth-based Roxane Cole Commercial Real Estate LLC, is one of the many sole proprietorships that make up the majority of small businesses in Maine.


Founded in 2010 by Roxane Cole, the one-woman firm represents clients who are looking to buy, sell or lease commercial property.

Roxane has been a commercial real estate broker for over 30 years. Before starting her own firm, she was co-owner of a leading Portland commercial brokerage where she was a broker for 23 years.


 
Linda Varrell, owns Broadreach Public Relations in Portland and makes her living by telling other people’s stories, but she has an interesting success story of her own.

Founded in 2006, Broadreach has grown from a one-woman operation to a firm with 12 full-time positions that recently expanded into an adjacent office space. Varrell said the firm’s revenue has increased by 20 percent over the past year.


Before starting her own company, Varrell worked in the banking industry for 25 years, where she mastered both corporate communications and project management. She ultimately decided to put those skills to work for herself and a growing list of clients that include large-scale service organizations, state associations and others.


To read the full articles, please go to: pressherald.com/2018/08/24/meet-3-maine-women-who-mean-business/
 
 
Rotarians In the News.... 2018-08-28 04:00:00Z 0
The fun was abounding at the recent Maine Corn Hole Tournament.
 
 
 
 
The Corn Holes have been lined up for the tournament to begin!
 
 
 

 
Our Club President John Curran in the #3 Green shirt.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Just a few of the many supporters who volunteered at the event: Charlie Frair, Megan Peabody, and PP Dick Hall.
 
Maine Corn Hole Tournament 2018-08-28 04:00:00Z 0
Recovery Coach Academy Jesse Harvey 2018-08-27 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Julie L'Heureux

A big picture statistical overview about The Opioid Crises in Maine was presented by Tim Cowan, MSPH, Director of Data Reporting and Evaluation with the Center for Health Improvement at MaineHealth. The statistical overview was intended to help Rotarians to develop a 360 degree look at substance abuse. The aggregated data tracked statistics about mortality in Maine thru 2016, compared to other populations and in the 16 Maine counties. Information was presented about improving population health by tracking the progress being made to prevent drug and substance abuse overdoses. It’s possible that the data reports forthcoming with more information about 2016-2018 statistics, could report an improvement on population health as a result of the responses to the epidemic. Tim acknowledged how important it is for Rotarians to be aware about how to help stop this epidemic.

A bullet summary from the data reports the following:

1. Drug overdose deaths: Maine had the 7th largest increase in the U.S. from 2010-12, compared to 2014-16. In all the aggregated data reported thru 2016, Maine reported an increase in overall deaths related to drug overdoses.

2. Drug overdose death rates in Maine counties, comparing the same time periods, showed Androscoggin, Cumberland, Kennebec, Washington and York with greater deaths than average for the state.  

3. Unfortunately, Maine is also among the states to report a high number of law enforcement encounters that test positive for Fentanyl.

4. Prevention intervention data reports show that opioid prescribing rates per 100,000 population are declining in Maine and in the U.S.

5. All overdoses and nearly all deaths caused by overdoses, involved some form of opioid- almost all involving some form of illicit opioid (heroin or synthetic form).  

6. Data about babies affected by opioid addiction was also included in the statistics.

Treating substance use disorders and preventing the spread of the crisis are challenging because there is no data readily available to demonstrate clear correlations with progress.  Access to health care is an obstacle to receiving treatment. Support for the Maine Medicaid expansion would give thousands of eligible beneficiaries the opportunity to receive treatment.  Also, the number of residential treatment beds available to those who are in recovery has not increased, but remained flat in recent years, while the crisis has grown. Tim is willing to share his data slides with interested parties. Contact him at: cowant@mainehealth.org.

 

(Tim Cowan and President John Curran.)
 

08/24/18 Tim Cowan, Maine Health Julie L'Heureux 2018-08-27 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Tom Talbott

This week we journeyed to the new Jewish Community Center on outer Congress St. President John Curran opened the meeting, calling on Gracie Johnston (photo at right) for the invocation. Gracie chose a poem titled “To Be Of Use” by contemporary poet Marge Piercy. Gracie noted how much this poem described Rotarians.The first line: “The people I love the best, jump into work head first.” (Link to full text: https://bit.ly/2uXrHjV)  

Mark Millar led us in the Pledge of Allegiance, and PP Russ Burleigh, sans keyboard, led us a capella to sing ‘America The Beautiful’ as our patriotic song. 


(Photo at left L-R: Mike McGovern, PP Larry Gross and PP Tom Talbott)

John welcomed everyone, including Past District Governor Lawrence Furbish and visiting Rotarian Mike McGovern, though that hardly describes him. Mike was President of the Cape Elizabeth Club, our Past District Governor, a Rotary International Director, Rotary Foundation Trustee, Chair of the Rotary International Polio Plus program, and nominating committee for Rotary International President. 


John introduced Jewish Community Alliance (JCA) Executive Director Molly Curren Rowles (photo at right) to the podium to provide an overview of the new facility. The complex opened in September 2017, with its primary function being to enhance and promote Jewish life and continuity both locally and internationally.  For more information, go to: https://www.mainejewish.org/


Extra Extra! Maine ranked first in the U.S. for both revenue and job growth among woman-owned businesses (American Express commissioned report)  That’s great news!  Who did the Press Herald interview for the story? Our own PP Roxane Cole and Linda Varrell! Congratulations to you both! See separate article this issue.


While we’re on the topic of women leading the way, a tip of the hat to Terri St. Angelo and Patty Erickson, along with PP Kris Rosado and a strong cast of supporters, who pulled off a great new fundraiser – the Maine Corn Hole Championship. A beautiful afternoon at North Yarmouth Academy was the setting for 14 corn hole courts and players from near and far. Word got around, and the overwhelming majority of players were non-Rotarians who came to compete for a prize package with some $500 in gift cards, umbrellas, and coolers.  Details on the proceeds, photos, and wrap-up next meeting! (See separate photos!) 


Mike Fortunato (photo at left) thanked everyone who joined him at Long Creek Youth Development Center for the ice-cream social and corn hole games. (Viva corn hole!) Mike is always looking for anyone interested in joining a group that visits center once a month on the third Tuesday. 

 


PDG Lawrence Furbish had some great news, which started with a $5000 grant check to our new Opiod Task Force headed up by Gracie Johnston and Jesse Harvey, and Jesse’s newly opened Journey House Sober Living home he founded in Lewiston.

(right photo L-R: Jesse Harvey, PDG Lawrence Furbish, and Gracie Johnston)

This Grant came from money returned to our District from money originally sent in by Rotarians to the Rotary International Foundation. In all, $52,000 came back into the district, and was parceled out to 8 different clubs. Special note of thanks to Doreen Rockstrom who wrote the grant application.  Great job! Jesse reminded us that there will be an Overdose Vigil held on August 31st, 6p-9p, at Deering Oaks. The Kennebunk Rotary Club will join us. Reach out to Jesse for more info:  jesse@journeyhousemaine.com 


Charlie Frair (photo left) updated us on the Veterans Lunch. Date is set: Friday, November 9th. Big things happening! We will move the venue to the Holiday Inn By-The-Bay, to accommodate what we expect will be upwards of 350+ people in attendance. A new partnership with AARP will help spread the word. In fact, word is that military leadership is all abuzz about the event, given that we’ve been steadily growing the program over the past 2 years. A lot more to come. This is an intensive event that requires many helping hands – so mark your calendars now!



With a pot of $955, the weekly raffle was led by Dick Giles. He asked for the hand of our Past District Governor Lawrence Furbish to select a candidate’s name from the growing pool of players. Mike Fortunato had the winning ticket, but as we all know, that’s only half the battle. Staring down the deck, Mike pulled the 2 of Spades, which is a long way from the payoff card, the Queen of Hearts, and his hopes of winning were quickly extinguished. 

(right photo L-R: Mike Fortunato and Dick Giles)
 

08/24/18 Bits & Pieces Tom Talbott 2018-08-27 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Tom Talbott

It was an away game for Portland Rotary....our annual trek to Hadlock Field, home of the Portland Sea Dogs. PP Bill Blount, noting how we started our relationship with the team back in their inaugural year of 1993, was called upon to introduce our trio of speakers:  Mike Antonellis, Director of Broadcasting/Media Relations, and voice of the Sea Dogs for the past 14 years, accompanied by current pitchers, Josh Taylor and Matthew Kent.  We applauded Mike who recently completed his 3000th career game behind the microphone. 

The format was essentially a fast-paced interview style session, with Mike peppering the two players for their take on the game, life as a Sea Dog, and their career goals.

Josh Taylor (#40), 6’5, 225 lb, 25 years old. Lefty pitcher from Phoenix. Played at Georgia College. Drafted by the Phillies in 2014. Signed by the Arizona Diamondbacks as a free agent in 2017. In 2018 he was assigned to Altoona, but three days later was traded to the Sea Dogs.

Matthew Kent (#21), 6’, 180 lb, 26 years old. Lefty pitcher from Waco, TX, and earned a spot with Texas A&M as a skinny 135 pounder!  Drafted in the 13th round 2015 by Red Sox, assigned to Lowell. Has primarily been a reliever, but this season has elevated to a starter, making the Eastern League All-Star team. As of this date, he leads the league with 9 wins.

Explaining his strategy, Matt said he has 7 different pitches: 5 over the top pitches, and 2 sidearm pitches. Included in that group is a looping 50 mph rainbow, that turns “batters into ballerinas spinning around.” Matt shared his process of moving the ball around, setting up pitches, and giving a batter different looks throughout the game. Drives ‘em crazy.

Matt recalled how he was low on the depth charts, when he busted out in his red-shirt 4th year at Texas with a solid four-week span of solid pitching. Practically overnight it propelled him to being drafted by the Red Sox. Josh spoke about how it can work the opposite way. As a reliever he described how one bad outing can bring down your entire season. Life of a ballplayer!

Both players live with host families. Neither have taken a liking to lobster! And, even with our recent dog days of August humidity, Portland is a lot more comfortable than Waco or Phoenix!

In the clubhouse, there are five nationalities on the team – US, Australian, Dominican Republic, Venezuela, and Puerto Rico. As in any clubhouse, the dynamics are unique, with players coming and going, dreams on the line, brand new players, experienced players with major league experience, and others who are on their last chance. Some have become new fathers, some have lost family members. It is a close-knit group, with everyone trying to live out their dream.

An interesting comment from Matt, who noted that when things are not going well on the mound, it sometimes is a minor adjustment that can take you a step forward. A big adjustment might take you a larger step back. Think about how that might affect you in your life.  Play Ball!  

AND THESE TWO PLAYERS DID.....

In the Maine Sunday Telegram, these ballplayers - both of them pitchers - played in the game against Altoona on Saturday, and each played a part in the score. Matt Kent pitched six innings, giving up only two hits, no runs. After another player pitched for an inning, Josh Taylor took over in the ninth, gave up two hits and no runs and was given credit for a save. Does anyone remember a Rotary meeting where a couple of Sea Dogs talked with us on Friday, and played prominently and effectively in a game the very next day?

(Photo L-R: President John Curran, Matt Kent, Josh Taylor, Mike Antonellis and PP Bill Blount.)


 

08/17/18 Take Me Out to the Ball Park Tom Talbott 2018-08-20 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott
Tim Cowan received his Masters of Science in Public Health in 1994, with a focus in epidemiology. Since then, he has been an analyst and/or administrator for multiple program evaluation and quality improvement projects. Tim has been the Director of the Health Index Initiative at MaineHealth since July 2010. Through the Health Index, MaineHealth prioritizes the community health issues toward which system resources are allocated. Tim oversees activities to analyze data and disseminate information about opportunities for most effectively addressing the priority health issues, as well as to provide feedback on the collective impact being made by the many organizations involved. Decreasing Prescription Drug Abuse and Addiction is one of the seven current Health Index priorities.
*08/24/18 Tim Cowan, Maine Health Matt Wolcott 2018-08-20 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Ben Lowry

Last Friday, the Portland Rotary Club enjoyed our annual outing at Hadlock Field, home of the Portland Sea Dogs. President John Curran welcomed 34 members and 7+ guests. PP Bill Blount (photo at right) once again spearheaded the event, which is always a fun and relaxing meeting, with hot dogs, burgers and the famous Sea Dog biscuits. The membership brought many guests, including a few school-aged children and grandchildren. 

Dave Small (photo at left) provided a wonderful invocation, which mixed many, many baseball teams and terms with words of thanks.

PP Bill Blount led us in the National Anthem (followed by the usual calls to “play ball!”), as well as an energetic Sea Dogs version of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.


Dave Ertz called up PP Paul Gore (PTG) to draw a card in hopes of pulling the Queen of Hearts, which would have won Paul $924 but, alas, Paul did not succeed, allowing our pot to approach the thousand-dollar barrier.


Gracie Johnston asked again for volunteers for the Wednesday afternoon/evening efforts to aid in serving those less fortunate at the Preble Street Resource Center. This monthly opportunity, which runs from 3:30 to 6:30 pm, is a great way to pitch in. Please contact Gracie if you can offer some assistance at: gracie.johnston@newscentermaine.rom  


Our monthly volunteer opportunity at Long Creek Youth Development Center is always on the third Tuesday of the month. Please contact Mike Fortunato (michael.j.fortunato@gmail.com), if you’d like to offer a hand in spending some time with at-risk youths. 


Patty Erickson (photo at right) reminded us that our “Corn Hole Tournament” is fast approaching and the Portland Rotary Club needs our help! The event, which will be on Thursday, the August 23rd at North Yarmouth Academy (rain or shine), will be a fun social, as well as fund-raising effort. The club needs teams of two to participate, volunteers on the day of the event, as well as any large coolers that may be hiding out in your garage or basement. Please contact Patty Erickson (perickson@bathsavings.com) or Terri St. Angelo (tstangelo@andersonwatkinsinsurance.com) to offer up your support.


Jesse Harvey (photo at left) gave us an update on his and our club’s amazing efforts to offer support to the recovery community. Jesse, along with Gracie Johnston, spearhead our Opioid Task Force. Please mark your calendars for August 31 at Deering Oaks, from 6:00 to 9:00 pm, as well as upcoming events on September 9th, the 18th and October 26th. Jesse will be keeping us posted. Portland, Maine, as you may know, is one of the country’s foremost “recovery communities,” with hundreds of men and women working very hard to gain control of their lives back after missteps. These opportunities will be eye-opening and heart-warming for club members, so please do try to attend one or all of these events.
 

08/17/18 Bits & Pieces Ben Lowry 2018-08-18 04:00:00Z 0
Cornhole Championship Fund Raiser Kris Rosado 2018-08-18 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jake Bourdeau
President John Curran opened our weekly meeting by welcoming 48 members and two guests. PP Cyrus Hagge (Photo at right) presented us with our invocation, reminding us of life's lessons through some quotes from Yogi Berra; Steve Mortimer led us in the pledge our allegiance to the American flag and we sang a patriot song a capella.
 

PP Laura Young introduced a new member, Amy Bouchard, who has lived in Bangor, Presque Isle, and now Kennebunk. Amy was a nutritionist and more recently became a financial planner with Merril Lynch. She’s excited about her community service roles, and has taken the “train the trainer” Opioid Recovery class with Jesse Harvey. Amy enjoys hiking, running, and is ushering at Portland Stage Company.  Please introduce yourself and welcome her into our club. 

(Photo L-R: President John Curran, Amy Bouchard and PP Laura Young.)


Chris Force (on right side in photo at right) ran the weekly raffle as the speaker selected a ticket from the holding vessel to try and find the elusive Queen of Hearts. PP Dick Hall’s name was selected, and he picked a two of diamonds, leaving over $890 for next week’s raffle. 


The Clarion has been trying out new menus over the last two weeks for our club and President John asked for a show of hands whether the Holiday Inn or the Clarion had the better food? The majority of those in attendance raised their hand for the Clarion. President John noted that there are a couple other options being considered for the club's weekly meeting venues.


PP Kris Rosado recently returning from his vacation to Erlangen, Germany, shared his experience of reaching out to their Rotary Club. Kris was stationed there during his service in the Army. Kris said that the Rotary Club treated him like family…..taking him on a private tour of city hall, and attending dinner at a restaurant which had been run by the same family for over 360 years. He was given their club banner to bring home and he will send them one of our club banners in exchange. (See "Around the World" separate article for photos.)   


Gracie Johnston (Photo left) provided an update on the Preble Street Soup Kitchen. She noted that there was a tremendous response for the Rotary volunteer night, and said that Preble Street can always use the help. The next Portland Rotary volunteer night at Preble Street is August 22. (See separate email coming about the details.) Contact Gracie to volunteer or further questions: gracie.johnston@newscentermaine.com. Gracie also let us know that she and some others donated their time at a dinner for a local organization, Maine Inside Out, that helps young people who are incarcerated, or formerly incarcerated, integrate back into society. Gracie told us about some of the kids who attended the event, discussed their lifes' paths, and how the organization had helped them get on their feet.

Along those lines, consider attending the Portland Rotary volunteer night at Long Creek Youth Center on the 3rd Tuesday of every month. For further details or questions, contact Mike Fortunato: michael.k.fortunato@gmail.com


Jan Chapman, coordinator of the Summer Reading Program, noted that this summer’s program had just ended successfully and thanked everyone who was involved. Jan talked a little bit about Erin Sullivan who wrote a children’s book called - Peace is a Choice You Make.  The book is about a little girl who discovers ways to work through bullying and negative comments, and how it makes a difference in herself.  In the book, the character makes peace with her inner circle and in the world with others. Jan and Bruce Chapman met Erin at a strawberry festival in Cape Elizabeth, and their conversations led to the Rotary reading program. Erin ended up donating 200 books to the program through the United Way, where the decision to use the book was approved. United Way was pleased with success of the program, which was held twice a week for 8-10 weeks. Approximately 152 books were used.  Thanks again to the volunteers who participated. 

Jan noted plans for the Youth Services Committee this year to include reading at Lyseth School. Other priorities include strengthening a relationship with the Portland High School Interact Club. Meghan Peabody is the liaison from our club to the Interact Club. Interact and Portland Rotary worked together this year on the Crutches4Africa effort. 

Another major effort of the Youth Services Committee is providing liaisons to Portland Schools for the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA). The leadership awards offer a 4-day program for students completing their sophomore year….the experience can be life changing.  Thank you goes to Bill Ross, the RYLA coordinator, and to the school liaisons, who are the key to the success of the programs, including: Rusty Atwood, PP Laura Young, Julie Chase, 2nd VP Ellen Niewoehner, Katie Brown, and Dave Putnam.


PP Dick Hall and Meghan Peabody are helping with the District’s Rotary Youth Exchange effort to host and exchange students for next summer. Please contact them if you are interested in hosting.  


Terri St. Angelo, event coordinator, discussed the upcoming Cornhole Championship Tournament, being held at North Yarmouth Academy on Aug. 23rd. They are currently looking for teams and for volunteers to help at the event with: setup, food sever, beverage sales, grill master, officials, take down and cleanup. If you can help or have questions, contact Terri at: tstangelo@andersonwatkinsinsurance.com.


Gus Karlsen spoke about hosting a couple boats in the MS Regatta, taking place on Saturday, Aug. 18th. Gus said our club has won the coveted trophy (the Dirigo Bowl) 8 times in 15 years, and the proceeds go towards the Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society in Southern Maine. Gus thanked the club for the donations over the years. The goal is to have two boats in the Regatta. Thanks for your donations. Contact Gus at: 239-1568 or karlsen@prodigy.net.
 

 
08/10/18 Bits & Pieces Jake Bourdeau 2018-08-14 04:00:00Z 0
You can meet many different people as you travel the world on vacation. 
 
Here PP Kris Rosado shared lunch with some new friends while traveliing to Germany on a recent vacation trip......
 
 
and exchanged their club banner.
 
Around the Rotary World Kris Rosado 2018-08-13 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Marr

Matt Wolcott introduced our speaker, Dr. Judith Jones, Chair of the Maine Association for Charter Schools (MACS), who started by saying she has always believed that education and health are the keys to overcoming poverty. After a career in public education in a variety of positions ranging from education planning to policy positions, she moved to Maine in 1998 with her husband to “settle down.”  

Judith has been at the forefront of the development of charter schools in Maine, and presented her thoughts on the movement that began 30 years ago in the U.S. Today there are 7000 charter schools across 44 States and D.C, with 3.2 million students. Maine has 9 charter schools, currently serving 2240 students from over 100 towns and growing. 

A charter school is free and open to all students, non-selective. One of the words that Judith kept referring back to was accountability. All charter schools are bound by contracts with their respective states, agreements that state how the school will operate and be accountable for student achievement. The result is that every charter school can be different, each one carving out its own policies, budget, and curriculum. The contract must be accepted and approved by the State, and each school is given a periodic performance review. Maine’s review is every five years. This enabling legislation carefully spelled out the goals and operating practices of the charter schools. It was a model for other states, and for some time was “ranked” as the best in the country. It's still considered one of the 10 best. 

Driving the rationale is that when students are limited to a school choice based solely on their geographical location, they only know the socio-climate they live in. Many parents seek other opportunities, with innovative curriculums for their children, and do not want to be bound by one choice of their local public school. There are two sides to the issue, and those who are against charter schools cite systems that have low budget facilities, inexperienced teachers, and lower performance scores. Judith pointed to the fact that Maine developed legislation with a high bar for performance, and resistance has for the most part faded in Maine. She also noted that the charter school program has received strong bi-partisan support in the state. 

(Photo L-R: Matt Wolcott, Dr. Judith Jones and President John Curran.)

Budgets are frugal, and one of the challenges is that charter schools are not funded with federal or state funds. The school can receive public funding based on the number of students, age, and types of programs offered. It can also receive public and private grants and donations.

Charter schools are seen by supporters as offering distinct choices, while those who aren’t convinced, worry that they will be siphoning off funding from public schools. Dr. Jones pointed out that the funding goes with the student, thus limiting the impact charter schools impose on any system while offering options for those in need. The enabling legislation, which Dr. Jones helped to develop, sets the parameters and protections that guide and govern the schools. The legislation is expansive and allows for advances in education, such as virtual schools which take advantage of technology and respond to individual needs.

The Maine Association of Charter Schools has achieved the success to date by following a rather simple formula. To begin with they work closely with the local community and enjoy a great deal of volunteer assistance. They steadfastly follow enabling legislation that clearly delineates the means and expectations of performance. Finally, they are focused and able to concentrate on specific needs. Proof of the success of charter schools is the fact that each has a waiting list and graduates have a very high rate of matriculation to college.

To learn more about charter schools, check out the website at mainecharterschools.org.
 

08/10/18 Dr. Judith Jones, Maine Assn of Charter Schools John Marr 2018-08-12 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott

Dr. Judith Jones has a B.A. from Middlebury College, a M.A. from Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and a Ph.D. from the City University of New York Graduate Center. She began her career in International Relations and worked for the US Agency for International Development and the State Department. Following her passion for education, Judith switched careers and became program analyst for the NJ Department of Education when community colleges were initiated and teachers colleges were transformed into liberal arts programs. While living in Washington DC, she became involved with the emerging “Six School Complex” and documented this innovative public school choice program in her 1987 book, Six School Complex: A Successful Innovation in Washington, D.C.’s Public Schools. This led to a dozen years of working with the DC Public School system in a variety of facility planning, education planning, and policy positions.

She became involved with the early efforts to create “public autonomous schools” in DC, leading to the passage of enabling legislation for public charter schools by the DC Council in 1994 and by Congress in 1995. As co-founder of FOCUS, she worked with founders, authorizers, and others to develop a high-quality charter school movement in DC, now serving 44% of all public school children.

In 1998, Judith’s personal focus shifted to the state of Maine, where she and her husband Bill retired. At the time, Maine was one of the 10 states without an enabling charter school law. Judith quickly joined MACS, which was working to bring charter schools to Maine. Judith led the group in formalizing their efforts as a non-profit corporation in June of 2000 and in persisting to convince Maine legislators to enact enabling charter school legislation in June 2011. In Judith’s words…

“Access to good education is an avenue out of poverty, but the existing American system denies this access to many children.  It gives school districts almost complete control over taxpayer dollars and resources. Personal experience has persuaded me that better education outcomes will come only with basic structural changes, including allowing parents to choose schools that meet the needs of their children, with the money following the child, not the political winds of the day.”
 

*08/10/18 Dr Judith Jones, Maine Assn of Charter Schools Matt Wolcott 2018-08-07 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Dick Hall

(The meeting started on a light note when this reporter heard PP Paul Gore tell Alan Levenson that he was “looking particularly lovely today.”)

President John Curran welcomed 47 members, 2 visiting Rotarians and 3 guests to a warm summer meeting. Bruce Jones presented us with the invocation, taking quotes from an acceptance speech from a Junior Achievement awardee. Its contents spoke about the importance of compassion in business and personal life and gave us examples of where we can introduce compassion to everything we do.

Mike Fortunato lead the Pledge of Allegiance, and PP Bill Blount led us in "My Country Tis of Thee."


1st VP Amy Chipman introduced her guest and potential member Francine Laporte, and PP Peter Goffin introduced Mary Finnegan, a Portland Rotary member from 15 years ago. Mary had already received hugs and special welcomes from several members.


President John welcomed Immediate Past President Don Zillman back to Maine from the Southwest  and mentioned that PP Kris Rosado was currently in Germany. He also told us that Jesse Harvey was back from CT where he was trained to be a Recovery Coach Trainer for our Opioid Task Force.


President John read a nice thank you note, addressed to IPP Don Zillman, from the Refugee and Human Rights Clinic at the Maine Law School. The program teaches law students how to be effective advocates and supports them in their work at our southern border.


PP Larry Gross, speaking on behalf of himself and his Vocational Service Co-chair PP Jack Carr, was planting the seeds for future vocational service opportunities. He told us that vocational service is one of the pillars of Rotary Service and is included in the Declaration of Rotarians (Page 7 in the Roster). Vocational service uses professions as a way to serve. He cited the example where Jack Carr uses his engineering profession to mentor students at Portland High School, toward getting their own engineering degree.


There was a long list of August birthdays, and several anniversaries. Matt Tassey was the longest anniversary member on the list, 32 years of Rotary.


Jesse Harvey told us that he just completed the training to become a trainer of recovery coaches.  He will be leading the CCAR Recovery Coach Academy (RCA) training sponsored by Portland Rotary, with a grant from District 7780. The dates are Sep 4, 11, 18, and 25 and the class is 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM, with 30 minute break for lunch on ones own. To register, go to: https://goo.gl/forms/bcKuR0eutmspR7zw1. RCA Class applications are due by 6:00 pm 8/16/18. In order to be certified, one must attend all classes. The grant is supplying the scholarships for attendees, and attendees must agree to four hours of community service per month. We had registration for a previous course which was cancelled, so we have (12) carried over applications. This leaves (13) more spots. (See separate article for further details.)


Terri St Angelo, event coordinator, talked about the Maine Cornhole Tournament, which will be held Aug 23, 2018 4:00 PM – 7:00 PM at NYA’s athletic fields, 148 Main Street, Yarmouth, rain or shine! It features bracket elimination, end-of-summer BBQ, Team champion & consolation prizes. Proceeds will benefit the Rotary Club of Portland’s local service projects and Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern Maine scholarship for full-tuition to attend NYA. For further details and to register, go to: https://orange.nya.org/cornhole/. Then Terri invited PP Roxane Cole (below left) and PP Jack Carr (below right) to demonstrate how the “sport” was played.

 

 


 

Gus Karlsen (at left) told us this is the last year he will be Collector-in-Charge for the MS Regatta. Gus brought the trophy we won last year for the service club division, and proudly displayed it up front. It is the 8th time Portland Rotary has won this trophy. Gus gladly collected $50 or $100 from anyone this week, and he will be back next week, so he asked that we “bring our checkbooks.” Usually Portland Rotary has been able to sponsor two boats, at $500 per boat. Gus would like to do that again.


With Jan Chapman conducting this week's raffle, which was over $800, Mike Reed's name was drawn. Mike pulled the Jack of Diamonds from the deck and it was not enough to win the pot that continues to grow.
 

08/03/18 Bits & Pieces Dick Hall 2018-08-07 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Julie L'Heureux

Inspiring yourself to achieve “blue sky space” was the theme of Ryan Vachon’s motivational presentation to our club on Friday. He was born in Boston, where he graduated from Tufts University with a degree in geology. He lives in Colorado, where he is the Executive Officer and Founder of One Premise Innovative Communications with the University of Colorado at Boulder. His career has been inspired by the challenges he has faced, especially while he was learning how to overcome his dyslexia and developmental obstacles. He found ways to inspire himself to be an assertive person and a creative thinker. This growth journey began about 6 years ago, when he found himself confronted by panic attacks. He made a decision to overcome the despair caused by these obstructive emotions. “I finally responded by standing up for myself,” he said.

Believing in the inspirational power of self-motivation has given him the confidence to confront challenges. Among the most arduous of his self-motivating challenges occurred during rock climbing experiences. During his climbs, he was faced with the opportunities and risks he confronted with each step he took, while attempting to conquer treacherous and steep terrains. Quick decision making increased his chances of success, like when he was once faced with a 2,000 foot “predicament”; but emotional decision making could also contribute to tragedy. His advice was “never act on emotion” but work through the “emotional clouds,” and look towards “blue sky space.” 

Confronting fear has been a big part of his life. He has learned to be motivated while striving to overcome fear. Taking small steps towards overcoming fear can lead to “big steps” in directing us to becoming “bigger people.”  

In being decisive, he recommended the acronym “GOALD”: 

G - A goal. “I want to do ‘this’”; and then ask yourself, “What holds me back?”

O - Ownership of the goal.

A - Advise yourself, “What do I do?”

L - Lead yourself through the paths toward the goal; know the challenges (sometimes, this also means facing the realization that there may be too many obstacles in the way of achieving the primary goal.)

D - Dedication for achieving the goal.

In summary, inspiring ourselves to achieve higher goals will give us the added benefit of allowing us to reach out to help others.

 

(Photo L-R: Matt Wolcott, Ryan Vachon, and President John Curran.)
 

08/03/18 Ryan Vachon, Explorer, Fim Producer, Motivational Speaker Julie L'Heureux 2018-08-07 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott
Joining us from Colorado, Ryan Vachon will speak about “concrete ways for overcoming doubt and increasing professional resilience.” As an accomplished scientist, author, climber, and film producer, Ryan, has travelled to Greenland, Alaska, the Andes and the Himalayas researching the changing climate. His work has been broadcast on the National Geographic, History, Discovery, CNN, and BBC channels to name a few and has been nominated for an Emmy Award. Currently Ryan is the executive director of a film production company and teaches at the University of Colorado at Boulder when he’s not professionally climbing.
*08/03/18 Ryan Vachon, Motivational Speaker Matt Wolcott 2018-07-31 04:00:00Z 0

At the recent Opioid Recovery Coach Training, Co-Chair of the Opioid Task Force for our Club, Jesse Harvey met Laurie Quinn from the Philmont, NY Rotary Club in District 7210 (Hudson Valley NY). Laurie is their past district secretary & 2-term club president! Her Club has a Rotary International grant with a Club in Korea- recovery focused!

(Photo L-R: Laurie Quinn and Jesse Harvey.)

Opioid Coach Training 2018-07-30 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Marr

Justin LaMontagne has had to deal with the fear and paralysis that a diagnosis of cancer brings to a family. Since he had a degree of familiarity with the Maine Cancer Foundation, he reached out to them to help his family deal with this hideous disease. The Foundation proved to be the best resource for his family and helped them successfully travel through to a positive ending. The experience made a distinct impression on Justin and he suggested that they make a presentation to the Club. Justin introduced today’s guest speaker, Ray Ruby, who is the Community Outreach Manager for this Maine non-profit focused on prevention and early intervention as the means to reduce the cancer related mortality rate in Maine.

Ray has an interesting background. He grew up in Connecticut but moved to Maine and joined the Portland Police Department. While on the force he continued his studies and went on to obtain a degree in non-profit management and went on to recently join the Maine Cancer Foundation. In preparation for the presentation, Ray did some research since he expected to find that Rotary was involved and assisted with the work of the Foundation. He found quite a legacy of assistance from the Rotary Clubs in the state, particularly Portland.

The Maine Cancer Foundation concentrates on assisting the patients and practitioners. Every dollar that the MCF raises, over 7 million since 2015, remains in Maine. The Foundation leaves the research work projects to the American Cancer Society and supplements the work of the medical and research professionals by concentrating on the practical application of their findings. The MCF realizes that education is a huge component of any care plan to eradicate the disease in an individual. We learned that the people of Maine suffer a higher than normal rate of cancers. It is thought that many of the causes are attributed to lifestyle and environmental factors, consequently by getting the word out, early and emphatically, to the people in the state, they can favorably impact the mortality rate. The most prominent example of the education outreach is the smoking cessation programs that are reducing the number of younger smokers in Maine. The concentration on early intervention and detection is a critical element in any effort to contain the rate and provide a favorable end result. Simply stated, if we avoid environmental and lifestyle factors and recognize symptoms early in the process, we can significantly improve survival rates. The number of products with potentially hazardous ingredients was made known and it was suggested that we examine products prior to applying or ingesting them.

The geography of our state is part of the reason for our cancer rate being higher than the norm. The remote areas of the state suffer limited medical resources and travel can become a factor. When you add to the mix the demographics, it adds to the problem and the need for the services of the MCF. The Foundation works to help people recognize the telltale signs of the disease and seek immediate care. It is widely accepted that early detection and intervention is the most important factor in any effort to reduce the mortality statistic. However, if you think you have cancer, but can't get to a doctor, it is not only frustrating but deadly. Therefore, the Maine Cancer Foundation has programs to help people in need get rides and access to medical care. Every year, there are over 8,000 Maine residents who are diagnosed with the disease and in need of care.

The Maine Cancer Foundation conducts a number of fundraisers to support their outreach and assistance programs. They initiated the “Tri For a Cure,” “Mary’s Walk,” and the “Twilight 5K” run, to help raise needed funds to help the citizens of Maine to concentrate on 1) prevention (no smoking and limiting sun and chemical exposure ), 2) detection (breast self exam, colorectal studies, and noting changes in one’s body), and 3) access to expert health care. These are the things that each of us can do to prolong our life and avoid the disruption and devastation that cancer brings.

The Maine Cancer Foundation is spawning the collaboration and education that is giving us a way to gain some degree of control over the disease. The battle is far from over. In fact, the statistics are not as favorable as we would like, given the effort. There are still too many people who smoke, spend too much time in the sun without protection, are overweight and unaware of the known carcinogens that are omnipresent in our environment. We are all getting older and suffering exposure, but this is not a death sentence nor an excuse. If we pay attention to the signs, we can get the care we need and take advantage of the miraculous care that is being developed to turn the tide on this scourge.

(Photo L-R: Justin Lamontagne, Ray Ruby, Heather Drake and President John Curran.)
 

07/27/18 Ray Ruby, Maine Cancer Foundation John Marr 2018-07-30 04:00:00Z 0
Photos of volunteers reading to youngsters at North Deering Gardens:
 
 
 
 
PP Jim Willey and youngster
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
PP Bowen Depke and Mike Fortunato with youngsters
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
President John Curran with youngster
Summer Reading Program 2018-07-24 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Marr

A new Rotary year has begun, out of the basement cavern we have come, the year ahead will be service and fun, and our new President John Curren will assure it’s well run. President John got us started by welcoming 46 members, 1 visiting Rotarian and 1 guest, then recognized the program theme, the fallen of WWI, and a speaker familiar to us....not a guest, but a son. 

Charlie Frair was asked to offer a moment of inspiration and noted the occasion. While the focus was to be World War I, the war to end all wars, he invoked the inspiration of a war time leader of a later date, Winston Churchill. Charlie offered three quotes from the Prime Minister and hit the mark.

Continuing our patriotic theme, we willingly Pledged our Allegiance to the Flag and followed that, sans instrument or specific song leader, with a heartfelt singing of our national anthem. Our group proved that the right song and the perfect admeasure of pride and passion is beauty in and of its own.  Great job!


It has been determined that the majority of the club prefer a lighter lunch (our third week) in order to keep down the calories and cost. We have honored majority rule and have gone to a meal offering which will keep the price at $17. However, President John advised that we are not selling enough meal tickets to cover our overhead. Consequently, every member is asked to show support, either by buying lunch or making a donation;  how about giving a few dollars while signing in? 


Past President Laura Young remembers asking all of us to bring guests and introduce them to Rotary, in general, and the magnificence of our club and acts of service in particular. Laura, always a woman of her word, brought two guests to the meeting and we believe they will both be sponsored by Laura to become members. 
We also had a guest from far away.. ..Ed Mast, a member of the Lakewood Foothills Club, located outside West Denver, Colorado traded banners with President John
(photo at left).


Every Rotarian is proud of what we do and every club has hallmark service projects, of which to boast. We all bemoan that these acts of service and largess are not well known within the community. When we list the service projects and gifts of our club, we pop buttons with pride but scratch our head later wondering why so few know. Juliana L’Heureux, has taken on the charge of Public Relations and outlined the plans the committee has developed to get the word out and give us better community exposure and enhance our membership efforts. Through collaboration, such as Chamber events, we can get the word in front of prospects and others who need to know. If you have an idea to share or know of an upcoming event, pass it along to Julie.


Our summertime, Savannah-based, member Kirk Duffy told the group of his initiation to our Club’s efforts to help the kids in the Cedar Unit at the Long Creek Youth Development Center. Kirk was instrumental in our serving up an abundant barbecue to the boys, along with a little frisbee can bash on the side. It was the first time that the boys said that they had too much food! Mike Fortunato and PP Jim Willey have been spearheading the Cedar meetings for over 5 years and they keep finding ways to make it better. Despite the addition of Kirk and Joe Reagan, they need more help. If you’re free on the third Tuesday of the month, please consider joining the group. Kirk will tell you that he passed the background check and came away a free and happy man.


The many projects of Rotary only happen because of the help of our members. There is room for everyone to help on any project and we ask that you look around and find the project that best fits your intentions and calendar. Roger Fagan, International Service Chair, asked for members to show up on Thursday, July 26th at the warehouse located at 20 Gooch Street in Biddeford to help with the Crutches4Africa project. It’s a light-lifting night with a start of 5 PM and you should be going home by 7 PM. If you can help please contact Roger at: drrogerfagan@gmail.com. If you’re busy on Thursday, how about Wednesday, the 25th? Our Community Services Chair, Gracie Johnston (gracie.johnston@newscentermaine.com), is heading up our monthly effort to help feed the needy at the Preble Street Resource Center. The kitchen duties are many and there’s something that will fit the abilities of anyone wanting to help. We meet at the center at 3:30 PM and on our way home around 6. The needs are many and we don’t confine ourselves to our club alone. Meredith Small brought to our attention the need of the Saco Bay Rotary Club to find a new sponsor for their signature fundraiser, The Duck Pluck. If your business is willing to help, please get in touch with Meredith at: mertsmall@hotmail.com.


On the subject of plucking, Jerry Angier orchestrated our weekly raffle and offered up a pot of $805 if you plucked the Queen of Hearts. Our speaker of the day, trusty Rusty Atwood, pulled the name of Alan Levenson (photo above L-R: Jerry Angier and Alan Levenson). Alan had good plucking luck the last time his name was drawn and gave his winnings back to the Club. He didn’t have any luck on this day and didn’t have to decide whether to spend or share, so the kitty will be greater next week. Come to the meeting, buy many tickets and enjoy the treasure of Rotary fellowship....a stand alone prize.
 

07/20/18 Bits & Pieces John Marr 2018-07-23 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Terri St. Angelo

Roxane Cole introduced our very own, Rusty Atwood, as our speaker. Rusty asked to be on the program for the July 20 meeting because of the date, July 18, 1918, being a critical turning point in World War I. He wanted to tell us “the rest of the story,” and, by extension, pay homage to many others whose service and sacrifice during “the war to end all wars” has faded into history. He spoke to us about a Centennial Saga involving 1st Lt. Earle Adams Billings. Rusty’s wife, Sue, is the great niece of Earle Billings. 

The Saga began with “the Immortals” of Portland High School, the boys that never came home from the war. Earle Adams Billings was one of those boys. A Gorham native, he graduated from Portland H.S. in 1912, then entered West Point in 1914. According to the Register of the U.S. Military Academy:  “His career at the Academy was one anyone might well be proud in that he graduated with his class in August, 1917, nine months prior to the date set for the graduation of the Class of 1918. His kindness and thoughtfulness toward everyone with whom he came in contact was distinctively prominent in his every act and those characteristics, coupled closely with his loyalty, integrity and his everlasting determination to succeed through squareness to others, gained for him from his classmates a profound respect and admiration.”

Lt. Billings, upon graduating, was assigned to the 9th Infantry, which at that time was overseas. He was one of the few officers of his class who was fortunate enough to receive an assignment to a unit which had already embarked for foreign service.

Before sailing, he married Ruth Dingley Jenkins, daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Samuel Wesley Jenkins of Portland, Maine, on October 10th, 1917. He was with her only until November 2, 1917, at which time he sailed for England. He remained in London a few days and then joined his regiment, the 9th Infantry, in France and was with it until sometime in January, 1918, when he was detailed to an officers’ school as an instructor. In the latter part of March, 1918, he was appointed as range officer, which duty he performed until the thirtieth of May when he was sent to the front to rejoin his organization and was with the 9th Infantry up to the time of his death on July 18, 1918.

Many events were taking place in the world in 1918. The US declared war on Germany. Moscow became the capital of the Soviet Union. The Red Sox won the World Series. The Romanov family was executed in Russia. Nelson Mandela was born. The Battle of Soissons began on July 18 between the Allied (French, British, American) and German troops. This battle ended after four days with 107,000 Alied casualties and 168,000 Germans. 

After falling on the battlefield at Soissons, the West Point class ring of Lt. Billings was stripped from his body by a German soldier. It was recovered when the German was captured a short while later, and returned to Earl’s widow, Ruth. When Ruth remarried and had a daughter, Katharine, the ring eventually was passed down to her. Katherine married another West Point graduate, Edgar Nichols and many years later, Billings’ ring was donated back to West Point. It was carried into space by yet another West Point graduate, Col. William McArthur, in October, 2000.

Upon the completion of the space shuttle mission, the Billings ring was back at West Point to be melted down as part of the Academy’s nascent Memorial Ring Program. Gold from the Billings ring, along with several others, was incorporated into the class rings of the West Point Class of 2002. Each year since, more donated rings are melted and the new class receives rings containing gold from past graduates.

After the war, Portland recognized their fallen sons by planting Linden Trees on Baxter Boulevard, one for each soldier lost. Each soldier from the Great War had a story to tell, perhaps not involving a ring that traveled into space, but important to a family nonetheless.

Rusty recommended several books: one by Richard Rubin, The Last of the Doughboys and Back Over There as good accounts of life as a soldier in the Great War, and a two-volume book by Don Zillman and Elizabeth Elsbach, Living The World War: A Weekly Exploration of the American Experience in World War I.
 

 

(Photo L-R: Rusty Atwood and President John Curran.) 

07/20/18 Rusty Atwood, A Centennial Saga Terri St. Angelo 2018-07-23 04:00:00Z 0

WHAT:  A 2-hour work detail to assemble crutches and other mobility aids for shipment in August. It is an opportunity to meet, work alongside, and share ideas with other Rotarians. GUARANTEED TO BE FUN. Light refreshments will be available.

DATE AND WHEN:   Thursday July 26th,   5 - 7 (??) PM

WHERE:    Warehouse at 20 Gooch St., Biddeford, just off Route 1 downtown (Near the waste plant site)

Dennis Robillard and the Saco Bay Sunset Club are planning to ship another container of mobility aids to Africa in August. They need help packaging and bundling equipment for easy and proper loading. They are a small Club that does a lot. We need another 10-15 people from local Rotary Clubs to help. 

This is a quick hands-on project that many of you have asked for. PLEASE LET TONY WAGNER KNOW YOUR AVAILABILITY AS SOON AS YOU CAN.    

You can contact Tony at his cell 799-7997 or Dennis at 468-0443. This project helps meet the District goal of expanding inter-club collaboration.   

I look forward to hearing from you.

Tony Wagner, Assistant District Governor

 

Collaborative District Effort 2018-07-16 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Terri St. Angelo

President John Curran opened the meeting by welcoming 43 members, 2 visiting Rotarians and one guest, then introduced Past President Russ Burleigh for the invocation. Russ said the word  “Triskaidekaphobia” very slowly. Then told us the meaning – from the Greek 'triskaideka,' meaning “thirteen,” and 'phobos,' meaning “fear.” It is the fear or avoidance of the number 13. Which the day is Friday the 13th of July. He continued to tell us what July means to him.


The visiting non-Rotarian, Jo Courney, was from Cabot Cheese, giving us cheese samples and told us about a Reward Volunteers program. Record the time you spend volunteering in your local community. When you log your time, you can win prizes like New England Vacations, cash for the nonprofit you volunteer with, and so many more. A fun cheese box auction brought in $50 and the winner was….Paul Gore!


Past President Loretta Rowe was making a first appearance from her medical leave. She handed out the new roster books, asked us to review our personal information for accuracy, and to contact her if anything needed correcting. She smiled (tearfully) as everyone stood and applauded her return to the club. We are so happy to see her smiling face again. 


President John Curran gave recognition to the rest of the new board members, then to 'Rotarians in the News': Jesse Harvey for his work on recovery homes that was published in the Bangor News and for his interview on a local radio station and Bob Fowler for his work for Milestone Recovery. 


Jesse Harvey, Co-chair of the newly-formed Opioid Task Force for Recovery, was about to announce the progress of the committee, when Gracie Johnston, his Co-chair,  suddenly appeared on queue to support his announcement. Together they described how the whole Opioid Task Force committee worked on a grant to District and received the $5000 award for their "Train the Trainer" program for Portland Recovery. This program will provide training, 30 hrs. of recovery coach courses and development of a curriculum for recovery coaches and Rotarians for training more trainers in the area. The goal is to offer classes and workshops for schools and organizations to help recognize the needs and support the recovery efforts.


Jan Chapman gave an update on the Summer Reading program. The first week was a very hot day with a handful of participants, but the second week doubled with excitement building for the summer. For more information, contact Jan: janchapman1966@gmail.com.


Mike Fortunato told us that the Long Creek BBQ is Tuesday July 17th. He will give us an update after the event.


Brian McDonough handled the weekly raffle and the speaker pulled Linda Varrell's name from the holding vessel of tickets, giving her a chance to find the Queen of Hearts, but it did not appear. 


Past President Kris Rosado announced that the "Maine Outdoor Challenge" raised $27,805 for Portland Rotary. The next fundraiser, the "Cornhole Championship," has had some changes as the Maine Girls' Academy is closing and will not be our partner. We will now partner with the Boys and Girls Club/NYA Scholarship. Cornhole boards will be made and a date will be announced on when help for those is needed. (see separate article)
 

07/13/18 Bits & Pieces Terri St. Angelo 2018-07-16 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Jake Bourdeau

Allan Brown from MEMIC is a physical trainer by schooling, and he was the speaker at Friday’s meeting. Mr. Brown shared some of his 33-years of ergonomic experience gained from his schooling and from training workers and employers at one of Maine’s largest companies.   

His message about ergonomics really touches close to home, since Maine has one of the oldest work forces (with the average worker age being close to 48 years old) and with over 85% of current jobs being considered sedentary when compared to approximately 50% of jobs in the 1950’s. For instance, Allan and others were noticing that workers in the office were having more aches, pains, or injuries than those in the warehouse. This lead to companies starting to use standup desks to help with posture and change positioning at work.

Mr. Brown also discussed comorbidity which is the coupling of multiple diseases or disorders, and which often occurs as one grows older (e.g., oh, my aching back, and my eyes are going). He also demonstrated how correct posture comes from sitting or standing properly at work, and how changing positions throughout the day will help all of us to reduce strain. He noted that those of us that stand up and walk around the office, and maybe standing occasionally throughout the day, have been shown to be healthier in the long run. 

Allan compared our posture to a seven-button club, whereby the number of buttons one sees on your shirt in the mirror gets smaller (6 buttons), and smaller (5 buttons), as we crouch, slouch, or bend over. If you can align your spine vertically, all seven buttons on your shirt have a shot at showing, and this is the best posture for reducing comorbidities and strain.   

He drove his points home by having Patty Erickson (photo at left) and Elise Hodgkin (photo below) demonstrate how our typical 13-pound head can really affect the musculature, and how holding one’s head in a proper position can allow certain muscles to relax. He went as far as to connect Elise’s upper back muscles to a machine that recorded the muscles' electrical pulses, and converted the readings to sound: the tighter the muscles were when she reached forward, the louder the sound became. With a little practice, Elise was able to relax those muscles using proper posture.

The long and short of Mr. Brown’s presentation is that over the years, gravity can bring you down, but there are some things you can do to counter act it. For additional information, he can be contacted at: abrown@memic.com.
 

(Photo L-R: 2nd VP Ellen Niewoehner, President John Curran, Allan Brown and Justin Lamontagne.)

07/13/18 Allan Brown, MEMIC Jake Bourdeau 2018-07-16 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Kris Rosado
We are in need of 6-8 Volunteers to help assemble cornhole boxes. You don't need to be an expert carpenter, but must be comfortable with using basic power tools, like drills, hammers and paint brushes.  
 
The First Annual Maine Cornhole Championship will be held at NYA on Thursday, August 23rd, from 4-7 PM. We anticipate 64 teams which means we need 32 sets of cornhole boxes.
 
Russ Voss has offered his new brewery on Route 100 in New Gloucester to be used as our manufacturing facility, and he feels confident we can knock out 30-40 sets in one day. Ben Delcourt is also helping coordinate the construction of the boxes. Their plan is for them and a few friends to precut and prepare all of the pieces on a Saturday, and then have a work party on Sunday to assemble and finish the boxes. A date has not been set, so right now we are trying to get an idea of who might be able and willing to help.
 
Please reply to Kris at krisrosado67@gmail.com if you might be able to help, and we will let you know once we have a date.  Hint, the Event is August 23rd, so there are not many weekends left!!
 
We need your help!!
 
Cornhole Championship Help Needed Kris Rosado 2018-07-16 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Roxane Cole

A century ago, The Great War was approaching its climax, with the Western Front battered by German forces seeking to take Paris. Dug in along miles of trenches, the American Expeditionary Force, led by American General John J. Pershing and French Marshall Ferdinand Foch, was determined to repel this advance. The fate of France, and its Allies, hung in the balance.

The month of July, 1918, would prove to be a critical turning point in World War I, albeit costly in terms of lives lost. July 18 marked the beginning of that turning point as A.E.F. Forces went “over the top” early that morning at Soissons and by the time the month was over, the German advance had been successfully blunted. Paris was safe and in three months time, an armistice would be signed and the doughboys could begin coming back from “over there.”

Many, however, did not come back. We, in Rotary, know of one local lad in particular - Harold T. Andrews - whose memory lives on via the memorial square, and flagpole, that bears our imprint. Others fell as well, 67 from Portland whose names are listed on a plaque in front of City Hall. One of the fallen was an Army officer born in Gorham, a 1912 graduate of Portland High and of West Point, Class of 1917, who led his men “over the top” on July 18, and remained behind - never to return to his home, or to his wife of nine months. A small piece of him did return, however, and in a most unusual way - and eventually made an equally unusual journey than the one that brought it home to Portland.

Portland Rotarian Rusty Atwood will identify the officer, offer “the rest of the story,” and, by extension, pay homage to many others whose service and sacrifice during “the war to end all wars” has faded into history. For those among us who travel Baxter Boulevard with any regularity, they are with us still.

(Special thanks to Past Presidents Bowen Depke and Jim Willey, along with other Rotarians whose efforts during our Centennial Celebration prompted Rusty’s interest in bringing this story to a wider audience.)
 

*07/20/18 Rusty Atwood,  July 1918,  A Centennial Saga Roxane Cole 2018-07-16 04:00:00Z 0
The new Club Rosters are out for 2018-19. Please be sure to pick yours up at the next Rotary meeting....there is a book with your name on it. Once you have it, please check your personal information to be sure everything is correct. If you find an error or know of a change, please contact Loretta (lrowe@maine.rr.com) and it will be published in the next Windjammer for you to correct in your own book.
 
Changes to date:
 
Jake Bourdeau, change work address to: 120 Exchange St., #300, P. 04101
 
Jesse Harvey, email correction: jesse@journeyhousemaine.com
 
Thank you.
Loretta
New Roster Changes 2018-07-15 04:00:00Z 0
.In the last Windjammer, under "Bits & Pieces," it was listed that David Snow gave the invocation, but it was David Small
 
.Please accept our apologies
EDITORIAL CORRECTION 2018-07-15 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Julie L'Heureux

President John Curran opened the meeting and introduced David Small (photo at left), who read an invocation written 14 years ago by Beth McLendon titled “The Evening of July 6,” that included: “Last night I stumbled into a lightening bug convention held on my street. Since it was the day after July 4th, I wondered if they were inspired to compete with the fireworks of the day before. The floating sparks weren’t as spectacular as the colorful streamers of independence but their simplicity gained my attention just as easily. Again and again, I watched as the gentle globes gathered together and then dispersed. Everywhere I looked, lights were blinking. They were always on the move. Action oriented and yet reserved. They were too shy to come near me, yet I still felt welcome. No motivational speakers, no Power Point presentations, yet, they captured my interest as no meeting has done before. Their messages were clear. Relax, enjoy the journey of life....float together sometimes....float alone sometimes....be gentle....let your light shine.”


PP Kris Rosado (photo at right) updated us on the Cornhole Championship Fundraiser and our partnership with the Maine Girls' Academy. In planning the event, a suitable site must be reserved with access to a grassy location and parking. The Cornhole Championship will be held on August 23, from 4-7 PM, location to be determined. 


Rotarians with July birthdays were recognized by everyone singing “Happy Birthday." 


Janelle LoSciuto (photo at left) led a patriotic medley singing of the first verse to “You’re a Grand Old Flag,” by George M. Cohen, then “I’m a Yankee Doodle Dandy,” a marching tune with roots in the American Revolution and “This Land is Your Land,” by Willie Guthrie. 

 


 

Justin Lamontagne presented the raffle at $751 and 1st VP Amy Chipman won the chance to find the Queen of Hearts; but it remained hidden in the deck.

 


President John (photo at left) emphasized the areas of partnership between Portland Rotary and the community as (1) to expand on the work with the Opioid Task Force and (2) to help new Mainers in their transition into the community. Additionally, he emphasized how the “lifeblood” of Portland Rotary was exhibited in the good works done by those who volunteer at Preble Street; in the international 3H project in the Dominican Republic and in Kosovo; with the CHE efforts to end childhood hunger, and improving education through reading in the Greater Portland area; and the mentoring with youths at the Long Creek Youth Development Center. 


Committee chairs for 2018-19 were introduced by President John:

Constitution/By Laws - Past President Tom Saturley; Fund Raising - Mike Reed; Good Cheer - Ben Millick; Invocation - David Small; Meeting Day - Jennifer Frederick; Music - Janelle LoSciuto; Program Chair - Matt Wolcott; Roster - Past President Loretta Rowe; Sergeant-at-Arms - Dave Putnam; Vision - vacant; Nominating - Past President Don Zillman

Membership - Past President Laura Young; Foundation - Past President Dick Hall.

Community Service - Gracie Johnston; International Service - Roger Fagan; Vocational Service - Past Presidents Jack Carr and Larry Gross; Youth Service - Jan Chapman; Opioid Recovery Task Force - Jesse Harvey and Gracie Johnston; New Mainers Task Force - Max Chikuta.

Windjammer (Internal Communications) - Past President Loretta Rowe; Public Relations (External) - Julie L’Heureux; Webmaster - Erik Jorgensen and Club Protection Officer - Nan Heald.

(Committee Chairs present: Dave Small, PP Tom Saturley, Jennifer Frederick, Janelle LoSciuto, Gracie Johnston, Jesse Harvey, Roger Fagan, PP Jack Carr, Jan Chapman, PP Dick Hall and Julie L'Heureux.)

 

07/06/18 Bits & Pieces Julie L'Heureux 2018-07-10 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Dick Hall

Portland Rotarian, Jesse Harvey was our speaker this week. As many already know, he is a person in long term recovery from Substance Use Disorder (SUD). Jesse’s focus was to help us understand the problem better and explain how we and others can help.

Jesse said that Portland is a recovery ready community and more communities need to become one also. 418 Mainers died of OD last year while there were only 171 traffic deaths.  More died in the US in 2016 than in the whole Vietnam war. There is a 20% decline in males in labor force due to SUD. Jesse thanked the district and our club for being recovery allies, who enable recovery to happen.

Jesse told us that in five weeks, he will have achieved 36 months in recovery. His mom worked for the UN, so Jesse grew up living in many countries. They moved to Buffalo at age 12, then MA, and his parents divorced while he was in High school. Jesse started drugs as it was easier to get than alcohol, heavily misusing pills acquired from doctors. He added alcohol in college staying 8 months before being asked to leave school. He moved to PA, enrolled in school, and was working for an attorney. After graduation he needed alcohol every 3-4 hours, and his legal problems started. He was in and out psych hospitals multiple times, involuntarily committed 4 times, and discharged to streets. The 5th time, he was discharged to a recovery house. After 3 months, he began working, and 3 months later had a full time job, and now has become more and more involved in advocacy.

Multiple programs are needed to be recovery ready because different people have different needs. Anonymous programs will not allow pushing for the macro changes. SUD is a diagnosed medical condition where the brain gets rewired by the substances. Recovery is a process to health, home, community and purpose.

Adverse childhood experiences lead to disrupted development, and if untreated, will lead to drugs, alcohol and other issues. Recovery oriented systems of care (ROSC) need to have the range to cover the needs of many different people. Lack of a continuum of care is a bridge to nowhere. Many systems treat the acute, with nowhere to go for continuing care. Recovery requires a continuum of care, which includes intervention, harm reduction, treatment, and recovery supports.   

Words have an immense power to wound and hurt, as well as inhibiting the needed changes to society. Health outcomes are different based on words used to describe condition.

No one is immune to implicit biases. Example:  Drug addict should be referred to as a person who uses drugs. Words and concepts can elevate and celebrate – Example:  People seeking long term recover. Recovery ready communities have sustainability and end the stigma and discrimination of the disease or its recovery. Opportunities for Rotarians include recovery coaches, Narcan training, support legislation, educate peers, and value programs. Direct support can be driving people to recovery programs and actively using destigmatized language and person-first language. Contact Jesse if you want to help at: jesse@journeyhousemaine.com.

(L-R: Jesse Harvey and President John Curran.)
 

07/06/13 Jesse Harvey, Opioid Abuse and Treatment Dick Hall 2018-07-08 04:00:00Z 0
Allan Brown has been working directly with Maine companies to help them manage workplace injuries for over 26 years, providing rehabilitation services on site at several of Maine's largest employers. He utilizes traditional clinical tools along with ergonomics to address the causes of injuries and to enhance recovery, a model that has created a paradigm shift in work injury management not only in the State of Maine but also in other parts of the country. The model drastically reduced the severity of injuries and often, with ergonomic interventions, eliminated the causation.
 
Allan has ben published on the model in The Comprehensive Guide to Work Injury Management (1995) by Susan Isernhagen, as well as in a number of other professional publications throughout the country. He has presented nationally on the topics of ergonomics and on-site care. His professional affiliations include having served on the Medical Advisory Board of Maine Employers' Mutual Insurance Co. and as Chair of the Board of Examiners for Physical Therapists in the State of Maine.
State university, earning a bachelor's degree in health, physical education and recreation. He slao has a bachelor's deree in physical therapy from Howard University, and continued his ergonomics training at the University of Michigan.
  
*07/13/18 Allan Brown, MEMIC Matt Wolcott 2018-07-08 04:00:00Z 0

NOTABLE DATES FOR MEMBERS IN JULY

Member Birthday
    3rd - Mark Millar
    5th - Ben Millick
  11th - Alan Levenson
            Charlie Whittier
  12th - Tom Nickerson
            Megan Peabody
  14th - Jack Carr
            Jennifer Frederick
  16th - Julia L'Heureux
  19th - John Marr
  23rd - Peter Noyes
  29th - Mike Reed
  30th - Terri St. Angelo
  31st - John Curran

   
Date-Joined-Rotary Anniversaries
Alan Levenson - 39 years
Bill Reynolds - 44 years
Rob Chatfield - 11 years
Mike Fortunato - 8 years
Steve Stromsky - 7 years
Jerry Angier - 4 years
Tom Nickerson - 4 years
Alex St. Hilaire - 4 years
Elise Hodgkin - 3 years
Tom Saturley - 2 years
Peter Moore - 1 year


                   
CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL!

Birthdays and Rotary Anniversaries 2018-07-06 04:00:00Z 0

The meeting minutes for Portland Rotary Club's Board of Directors are posted on our website the month following their approval. From the "Home Page," click on the "Board Meeting Minutes" in the listing at the left and then the date of the minutes you would like to review. 

Board of Directors Meeting Minutes Loretta Rowe 2018-07-02 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Matt Wolcott

Jesse Harvey will be our speaker at Portland Rotary this week. He is a person in long term recovery from Substance Use Disorder. He works as Peer Support Coordinator for Greater Portland Health, volunteers as Chapter Lead of Young People in Recovery-Portland, and serves on Portland’s Overdose Prevention Task Force, as well as on the Boards of Directors of Health Equity Alliance and NAMI-Portland.

Jesse is an advocate for low-cost, low-barrier, and evidence-based public health interventions, and he has helped to educate healthcare providers, the media, law enforcement, and others in Maine on the value of recovery-ready communities. Jesse is most passionate about recovery houses and overdose prevention sites, and is the Founder of Journey House Sober Living and Portland OPS.

Jesse is a Master’s student at Muskie. In his spare time he likes to walk around Portland and eat Ethiopian food.

*07/06/18 Jesse Harvey,  Journey House Matt Wolcott 2018-07-02 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Michael Dubyak, Chairman of South Portland-based WEX, shared with us the story behind writing his book, The Road to WEXcellence, and read from a couple of chapters. “Why did I write a book? Maine doesn’t tell good stories about its successes. This is a good story,” he said. “I also wanted to share the learnings from my experience.” Dubyak said the book was written to capture all the phases of the story of WEX. “I believe that my behind-the-scene perspective offers lessons.”

Dubyak read from the book’s preface, which began with the story of the culmination of WEX’s effort to launch their IP in 2005. “We were on our road show with 74 meetings in ten days,” he said. “Meetings all around the country with investment banks and potential investors. It was draining. Our owners at the time, Cendant, were in control of the process, and there were two companies trying to buy the firm before the IPO—so we had two due diligence efforts underway while we were raising interest in the offering. If one of the companies was successful, we would have to shut down the IPO.”

Dubyak said that when he opened the drapes of his hotel room on the morning of February 16, 2005 and saw the view of the Statue of Liberty, “I just lost it. I was so overcome with emotion. Here I was, a guy from Maine getting ready to ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange, my emotions flowing, and I just sat down on the couch and cried.” He said that he finally got himself together and met up with Melissa Smith, WEX president, and the rest of his executive team, and they launched their IPO.

“We didn’t do it for the money for ourselves,” he said. “All the money went to Cendant. We saw this as our chance for independence.”

Dubyak then read from the book’s third chapter, which is about entrepreneurial risk. “Entrepreneurs take on risks to survive,” he said, noting that by year 12, most startups have either gone out of business, or disappeared. “Very few survive,” he said. “Staying in business requires ratcheted growth and capital.” Dubyak explained that each round of raising capital is lettered, starting with “A”. “We were on the “I” round,” he said. “We cycled through six presidents before I became CEO. But the management team stayed together. “We called ourselves ‘WEX’ers,” he said. “What made us special; what makes a Maine company special are the people of Maine. We are persistent and loyal and compassionate. Our culture is that of a family, and I am proud to be a part of it.”

In response to questions, Dubyak reported that the firm’s new headquarters should be complete by the fourth quarter of this year and will house 450 employees. He acknowledged that this will present another challenge to Portland’s traffic and parking situation. Asked how the firm’s culture of community involvement plays into its competitive advantage, Dubyak said that high employee satisfaction translates to high customer satisfaction. “We’re now signing customers like Exxon and Shell to ten-year contracts,” he said. “That locks the competition out.”

Since WEX’s IPO opening at $19 per share, its stock has risen to $190.80 per share with a market capitalization rate of $8.3 billion. The book is available on Amazon and at Barnes & Noble.

(Photo L-R: Michael Dubyak and new club President John Curran.)

06/29/18 Michael Dubyak, Chair WEX Bob Martin 2018-07-01 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Erik Jorgensen

Incoming President John Curran welcomed 35 members and four guests. Jen Fullmer, a retired B-1 bomber pilot, was one of the guests who joined us for our lunch. She is currently working to establish a new nonprofit, Boots2Roots. The organization helps veterans transition from military to civilian life in Maine, assisting them with everything from job placement to navigating the real estate market.

1st VP Amy Chipman enthralled the club with tales of Toronto – telling us of a spectacular Rotary International Convention, which she attended with a battalion of Portland Rotarians, including PP Peter Goffin, 2nd VP Ellen Niewohner, PP Bill Blount, Tom Nickerson, Ron Bennett, Bruce Moore, Jan Chapman and Mr. and Mrs. John Marr.  25,000 Rotarians were in attendance at the Toronto coliseum.  They heard not only from Rotary International’s president, but from prime ministers, the head of UNICEF, first lady Laura Bush and others, including Process Anne. Even Canada’s celebrity prime minister, Justin Trudeau, was in attendance.  She said it was “three world leaders, one first lady, and 25,000 friends." 

Jan Chapman reported that the Club’s North Deering Gardens reading program is up and running, with a full complement of readers. She also told her own Toronto story, in which she described the end of a meal when the manager of the restaurant they were at came up and waxed poetic about Rotary and its work for refugees. He then offered them all free drinks, proving the value of going out in public while wearing one’s Rotary pin.

Gracie Johnston made an appeal to members, asking them to step up to help with the Club’s monthly meal at Preble Street. The program has been going well, but the supply of Rotary volunteers has grown a little thin. Brandishing a “Help Wanted” sign, she explained that the program serves dinner on the fourth Wednesday of every month, and that all are welcome.

Finally, PP Peter Goffin was the latest victim of the cruel Queen of Hearts in our weekly raffle. He was close, pulling an ace of that suit, but not close enough to take the jackpot, which continues to grow.
 

06/29/18 Bits & Pieces Erik Jorgensen 2018-07-01 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Alan Nye

Erik Jorgensen introduced Dr. Chuck Radis, a Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of New England and a rheumatologist with an interest in Public Health issues. After 22 years in private practice at Rheumatology Associates in Portland, he now provides rheumatologic services through the Maine Coast Memorial Hospital in Ellsworth. 

Dr. Radis believes that universal health coverage is a basic right. He described the problems with our current health care system as “the bridge is burning.” Dr. Radis indicated that in 2007 15% of our country’s total gross product went to health care and that number is now 17%. He told us that the most common reason for bankruptcy in the U.S. is large medical bills.

Without getting into a full discussion of the Affordable Care Act, Dr. Radis stated that it provided benefits by allowing younger adults to be insured longer under their parent’s policies and by coverage of pre-existing medical conditions. The ACA didn’t, however, control costs.

Dr. Radis argued that a new health care system is necessary and that to be effective, it needs to be:

1. Simple (the current U.S. system is much too complex);

2. Fair (universal); and

3. Sustainable (with cost controls).

Dr. Radis then gave examples of what he personally was charged on his medical bill for same day surgery in 2015 and compared those figures with the medical costs of the individual items. The differences were in some instances staggering. He also gave other examples, like the average cost to Americans for an MRI is $1,119 – in Australia it’s $215. He noted that the only two countries that allow prescription advertising on television are the U.S. and New Zealand and that this advertising adds about 20% to the cost of prescriptions.

Dr. Radis then discussed Medicare and noted that it has substantially less administrative costs as compared with private insurance. Medicare also pays less to hospitals and physicians than private insurance. Dr. Radis said that what Medicare can’t do by law is negotiate the price of prescription medicines and he believes this should change. 

In summary, Dr. Radis believes that the solution to our health care cost crisis is to design a system that looks a lot more like Medicare. His proposal – both during his talk and afterwards when taking questions, provoked skepticism and outright disagreement by some Rotarians who argued that his examples were oversimplified and in some examples erroneous. It was a lively discussion about a critically important topic.

 
 
(Photo L-R: President Don Zillman, Dr. Chuck Radis and Erik Jorgensen.)
 
06/22/18 Dr Chuck Radis, Healthcare From the Physician's Perspective Alan Nye 2018-06-25 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by John Curran
Rotary District 7780 members and family are invited.

The Portland Sea Dogs are happy to host Rotary District 7780 as they take on the Altoona Curve, AA Affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sunday, August 19th at 1:00 PM. Gates open at 11:30 AM. Tickets are $26 pp. Tickets purchased through this link are for the Coca-Cola Picnic Area in Right Field, and include a buffet that runs from 11:30am until 2:00 PM and consists of hamburgers, hot dogs, bbq pulled chicken, baked beans, cole slaw, Coca-Cola products and Sea Dog Biscuits. There is also a cash bar in the area for beer and wine.

What a great way to share an afternoon with fellow Rotarians and prospective members in the District. Invite your friends and family, too!

If any questions you can contact bob.wester@icloud.com, District AG from the Kennebunk Portside Rotary Club or click on the following link to order tickets 
https://groupmatics.events/event/Rotarydistrict7780
 
District Sea Dogs Game John Curran 2018-06-25 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Ben Lowry

President Don Zillman called the meeting to order welcoming 39 members and 1 guest to the Clarion Hotel.

David Small provided a delightful invocation, lamenting and celebrating the changes in our lives, with an incoming club president and with the ever-changing seasons, which all too quickly run from summer to autumn here in Maine. But, with a reading about the joys of summer, we were all able, if just for a day, to feel the excitement that these first few balmy days bring us all as Mainers.

Kathy Grammer’s voice steadied our acapella group through our rendition of “America the Beautiful.

John Houghton brought the lovely and talented Jay Houghton, his beloved wife, to Rotary as his guest.


Gracie Johnston needs your help! The Preble Street Resource Center provides so much  (gracie.johnston@newscentermaine.com) support for the homeless community, which explodes in the summer, and our club has committed to providing volunteers for our Wednesday commitment from 3:30 to 6:30. This could be some of the most rewarding work you can do…so please contact Gracie if you’d like to make an impact on the lives of some of those who are less fortunate than yourself.


Erik Jorgensen was feted for winning his re-election to The Maine House of Representatives. Despite running unopposed, Erik ran a crisp and well-managed campaign. Congrats to our Woodford area leader. We look forward to hearing Erik’s thoughts on the happenings in Augusta. And we promise to not have his talk take place in a bowling alley this year!


President Don gave a brief and carefully worded thumbs-up for the ranked choice voting process which culminated this past week with Janet Mills’ primary victory. As she gathers herself to take on Shawn Moody in November’s general election, we, as Mainers, can conclude that as a national model for this new system, our voters seemed to handle it with great aplomb and stability.


Our search for a “home” continues. After some very successful and warmly received discussions with The Holiday Inn By-the-Bay resulted in an offer to keep us on as Friday guests, our club is finalizing its position as we search for the elusive perfect venue for our Friday meetings (reporter’s note: we began this VERY elusive search back when I was club president about 15 years ago!). While just about all of us want to stay on the peninsula, and just about 100% want to stay on as a “Friday lunch club,” there are so many factors, such as parking, meal cost, and black- out dates, that really cause the Board of Directors to pause and reflect on these rather major decisions. While the decisions are being worked out, and with new consideration being given to the gorgeous Jewish Community Center near Westgate, President Don (with President John in the wings) asks for your patience and understanding as we once again grapple with finding a cozy and welcoming  home base.


Patty Erickson had our speaker, Chuck Radis, draw a name for the weekly raffle and Tom Saturley strode to the podium in search of the elusive queen of hearts which would have netted Tom $690….but the eight of clubs forced Tom back to his seat, in search of a pot of gold at another time. 
 

06/22/18 Bits & Pieces Ben Lowry 2018-06-24 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Michael Dubyak is Chairman of WEX Inc., a leading provider of corporate payment solutions. From 1986 to 2013, Dubyak held executive management positions, including the last 15 years as President and CEO.  His career at WEX spanned the Company’s nine years of venture capital ownership, five subsequent ownership changes and ultimately its Initial Public Offering in 2005. Dubyak has chronicled the story of the founding of WEX, initially known as Wright Express, in his book, The Road to Wexcellence, published by Amazon Digital.

Dubyak’s leadership and vision was instrumental in forming the strategy, infrastructure, and operating philosophy under which the Company continues to excel today. He guided a technological transformation of WEX, developed new market strategies and instituted aggressive growth and market leadership goals. Under Dubyak’s direction, WEX became a publicly traded organization in 2005 with an approximate market cap of $700 million. WEX’s current market cap is $8.13 billion.

Dubyak currently co-chairs FocusMaine, an economic initiative with a mission to create significant job growth across Maine. He has also chaired Educate Maine, a K-16-focused education attainment organization, was Chairman of the University of Southern Maine Board of Visitors, served on the board of the United Way of Greater Portland, the Executive Board of the Maine Chamber of Governor’s Council on Competitiveness and the Economy, the New England Advisory Council of the Boston Federal Reserve, the Center for Grieving Children Board of Directors and co-chaired its Capital Campaign.

Mike has a B.A. from Baldwin Wallace University.  An avid world traveler, hiker, biker and kayaker, Mike and his wife, Denise, have navigated the Colorado River in a wooden dory, hiked 7 days to Machu Pichu, navigated the Antarctica and the Arctic on an ice cutter, and hiked over 75 miles in New Zealand, Patagonia, Ireland, and Bhutan.

*06/29/18 Michael Dubyak, Chair WEX Bob Martin 2018-06-24 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Dr. Chuck Radis is a Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of New England and a rheumatologist (a doctor who specializes in immune system disorders) with an interest in Public Health issues since his years as a public health doctor for the Casco Bay Islands in the 1980’s. He is a board member of Consumers for Affordable Health Care and a member of several state committees developing bills to protect consumers from undisclosed insurance practices. After 25 years in private practice locally at Rheumatology Associates, he now provides rheumatologic services Down East through the Maine Coast Memorial Hospital in Ellsworth.

After completing an internal medicine residency at Brighton Medical Center, Dr. Radis provided primary care to the six year-round islands of Casco Bay. He saw first-hand how critical access to health care is to the health of island families. During his time practicing in Casco Bay, Dr. Radis averaged more than 150 house calls each year and provided free or reduced fee service to islanders without health insurance. As a private practitioner, he provided health insurance to his employees and believes that universal health coverage is a basic right. “Mainers need to take back control of their health care system. We need to develop a system which can negotiate and control the cost of prescriptions and reduce administrative costs. A single-payer system can provide quality health care for all. No one should be left behind.”

He is the founder of the Maine-African Partnership for Social Justice which provides health education programs in South Sudan as well as scholarships to African immigrants at Portland High School.  

Dr. Radis was an unsuccessful candidate in the 2016 Democratic primary for the District 27 (Portland) Senate seat.

*06/22/18 Dr. Chuck Radis, Healthcare from the Physician's Perspective Bob Martin 2018-06-22 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Three of the founders of MaineCanDo, Betsy Peters, Melanie Sachs, and Stephanie Brock, shared with us Friday the story of the creation of Maine’s unique response to the #MeToo movement and acts of sexual harassment by members of Maine’s business community. MaineCanDo (www.mainecando.org) is a website designed to help individuals, organizations, investors, and boards confront issues of gender discrimination and sexual harassment in the workplace, particularly those who have suffered, or witnessed, sexual violence or harassment. 

“This website is the first of its kind to provide a set of tools for individuals and businesses,” said Melanie Sachs, Executive Director of Sexual Assault Response Services of Southern Maine. “Two in five Americans have experienced sexual violence in the workplace,” she said. “And three in ten have observed it.” “Society has raised the bar,” Betsy Peters stated. “The real impact is to humans and society. For enterprises, the strategic imperative is clear, one letter on the internet can bring a company down.” The intent of the website, according to Peters, is to provide an “authentic Maine response” for individuals and businesses. “Maine is a land of small businesses,” she said. “Small businesses don’t have HR departments.” Sachs related that Maine law requires companies with more than 15 employees to conduct sexual harassment training. “Maine is not on the leading edge of this issue,” she said. “California is nine times stricter. But the real question is, are you going to do compliance, or are you going to do better?”

“There’s an ‘ick’ factor to all of this,” Peters stated. “Stuff we just don’t like to talk about.” The effort stemmed from an inciting incident involving Stephanie Brock who said she “drew a line” after offensive behavior toward her from Jess Knox, with whom she had been working on Maine Startup and Create Week. “We can’t grow in a community when leadership looks like this,” she said. She wrote letters to all the boards of organizations with which Knox was affiliated. Knox did not dispute the charges, and agreed his behavior was inappropriate. “I got a swift and fair response from all of them,” Brock related. “But it was a scary thing for me to do. This website will help others who find themselves in the same situation.”

The presentation of the three women struck a chord among members who engaged in a supportive discussion during the Q&A period. Laura Young rose to share her MeToo moment by relating her discomfort and distress at a Portland Rotary luncheon where two male members engaged in jokes about male genitalia. “Other male members around the table looked uncomfortable. What was I supposed to do, laugh? These are never funny,“ she said.

Upon a motion, the club agreed to sign the MaineCanDo pledge as an organization, the first Rotary Club to do so. “I wholeheartedly support Portland Rotary signing this pledge,” Club Protection Officer Nan Heald said.

MaineCanDo Pledge:

We, the undersigned, know that Maine can do better and will do better. Join us in our pledge for Maine to be home to respectful and harassment free workplaces.

We agree to:

• Review workplace sexual harassment policies in light of #MeToo and audit how they work in practice.

• Create and assure that appropriate and safe mechanisms are in place to report, measure and track complaints of inappropriate behaviors whether intentional or unintentional.

• Be proactive in developing respectful workplace cultures.

• Designate and ensure employees know of go-to members in organizational leadership who will ensure grievances are taken seriously, investigated fairly, and resolved quickly.

• Commit to an ongoing review of sexual harassment and discrimination policies, practices, and workplace climate at the highest levels of leadership to ensure they are making a practical impact.

• Use our influence as investors and board members by committing to increased attention on and an intentional review of policies related to human capital and to supporting workplaces that are free from harassment and discrimination.

(Photo L-R: Melanie Sachs, Bob Martin, Betsy Peters, Stephanie Brock and President Don Zillman.)

06/15/18 MaineCanDo Bob Martin 2018-06-18 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Ben Lowry

President Don Zillman welcomed 44 members and 4 guests to our club meeting on Friday.

Charlie Frair provided an interesting innovation with a reading from Ron Sousa, a Canadian philosopher. Entitled “The Obstacles of Life,” this short, inspirational piece concluded that the pursuit of happiness, with its ongoing ups and downs, is the essence of life. So, let us enjoy the journey rather than focus on the concept of achieving “happiness.”

PP Russ Burleigh tickled the ivories as accompaniment to a rousing version of “God Bless America”.


President Don thanked membership for all of their input and announced that discussions are ongoing with the Holiday Inn By-the-Bay and a decision on our luncheon venue should be forthcoming within the next week or two. 


(Photo L-R: Katie Brown, Scott Shibles, Julia Hansen, Moritz Hansen (Julia's father), and President Don Zillman.)

After being introduced by Katie Brown, Scott Shibles, the director of student life at Casco Bay High School, gave a very moving description of our Youth Service Award winner, Julia Hansen. After seeing two of her best friends commit suicide during her junior year, Julia became determined to help those who suffer in silence with mental illness. Julia boldly started up “The Yellow Tulip Project,” which has gained great momentum in allowing those who have felt stigmatized by emotional issues to speak up and have a voice within the community. A well-deserved award for a fine young woman.


PP Laura Young provided a brief announcement about the Summer Reading Program at North Deering Gardens, which runs from July 5th thru August 9th. If you are interested in this very rewarding program, please contact Laura at lyoung@mainecf.org.


Paul Tully and Charlie Frair are already working tirelessly to have an even bigger and better Veteran’s Day luncheon next fall. It was announced that the event will most likely be moved to the Holiday Inn so we may accommodate even more veterans and guests.

 



PP Peter Goffin was selected to pull a card from the deck of cards for our weekly raffle, run by Jennifer Frederick, but, alas, Peter was not able to find the elusive Queen of Hearts.

(Photo L-R: PP Peter Goffin and Jennifer Frederick.) 

 

06/15/18 Bits & Pieces Ben Lowry 2018-06-16 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

Our program this Friday will focus on Maine’s response to the #MeToo movement, the founding of #Maine Can Do, an online resource for employers, managers, investors, board members and workers who have suffered or witnessed workplace sexual harassment. Our speakers will be the founders of this groundbreaking program.

Betsy Peters (above photo) is a business consultant who also launched the first website in the ski industry, conducted a live webcast from the top of K2, developed a program that got 400,000 women in menopause off of pharmaceuticals, and was recognized at the Obama White House for her web-based educational program. Her experience includes serving as an entrepreneur in residence at Maine Technology Institute. She holds an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin and lives in Freeport where she has been a member of the school board.

 

Melanie Sachs (photo left) is the Executive Director at SARSSM: Sexual Assault Response Services of Southern Maine.  She is a licensed clinical social worker and her experience includes working as the former Executive Director of Freeport Community Services. A cum laude graduate of Bates, she holds a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences at Case Western Reserve University. She lives in Freeport where she is Vice-Chair of the Freeport Town Council and a member of Freeport Rotary Club. In her spare time, she serves as a Girl Scout and Cub Scout leader, and an Odyssey of the Mind coach.

Stephanie Brock (photo left), is the General Manager of Red Thread Portland, a company that provides furniture, technology, and architectural systems for innovative workplaces. She also teaches Heated Vinyasa Yoga.  She’s from the other Portland where she graduated from high school and studied at Portland State University. Stephanie loves running, craft beers, yoga and spending time with her daughter. She lives in South Portland.

*06/15/18 MaineCanDo Bob Martin 2018-06-15 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bob Martin

President Don Zillman welcomed 55 members, 1 visiting Rotarian and 1 guest to our club meeting on Friday.

Tom Nickerson gave our invocation reflecting on the death of Robert Kennedy 50 years ago by reading from Ted Kennedy’s eulogy to his brother. Linda Varrell led us in the Pledge, and we sang “God Bless America.” Visiting Rotarians included PDG George Rice, president-elect of the Oxford Hills club, and Kirk Duffey of Savannah, GA who will be with us until October.

 


Mike Fortunato and PP Kris Rosado (photo at right) thanked the army of volunteers who contributed to the success of the Maine Outdoor Challenge. Kris reports that preliminary results show that the event earned $27,000 for Rotary, and an equal amount for the Boys and Girls Club.

Kudos were also shared for the MOC banquet at which participants shared lobster, steak, or chicken, depending upon what they told Mike Fortunato. Tom Ranello and Patty Erickson were applauded for their contributions. Tom displayed excellent auctioneering skills demonstrating his ability to raise $3,400 for one item — PP Cy Hagge’s contribution of a week at his Sugar Loaf estate. The winner got it for $1,700, and Cy agreed to contribute a second week to the runner up if the top price was matched. It was.

Kris introduced a new fundraiser which will take place on August 23 in partnership with the Maine Girls Academy, Maine Cornhole Championship. For those unfamiliar with the sport, cornhole, or bean bag toss is a game in which players toss bags of corn at a raised platform with a hole in the far end. Kris demonstrated the techniques required to achieve mastery of the sport. Watch for more details on this event.


Jen Frederick offered Bruce Nelson the chance to find the Queen of Hearts and take home $625. But Bruce could only find the King, and the jackpot increases.
 

06/08/18 Bits & Pieces Bob Martin 2018-06-10 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Tom Talbott

(Photo L-R: Bob Martin and President Don Zillman.)

Chair Bob “Belichick” Martin had to scramble when our scheduled speaker was unable to attend due to a family illness.  In the wings was ace reliever and soon-to-be outgoing Club President Don Zillman. “Next Man Up” performed with his usual dexterity, providing a year in review, his observations and commentary, and opportunity for club participation.

Don began with a reflection on a week of notable anniversaries....100-50-25. It has been 100 years since the end of WWI. Don, in his role as a Maine Law professor, recently co-authored a comprehensive book on the war and that time period; 50 years equated to Robert F. Kennedy’s 1968 funeral, as well as  Don’s own 50th wedding anniversary to his wife, Linda. (Congrats!); 25 years represented Don’s tenure in the Portland Rotary.

Don’s pre-member perception of Rotary was one of silly songs and funny hats. He was wary of any club that would have him as a member, invoking that famed Marxist expression. (Groucho not Karl) He found out quickly that he was way off, noting that joining Rotary was one of the best things he’s ever done. 

Riffing, he spoke of how Rotary has changed since he joined. In 1989, women were first admitted to Rotary.  How attendance requirements were relaxed to accommodate today’s culture. He referenced how we’ve always been driven by service initiatives and activities, but how incredibly broad and diverse the programs have become. However, some important things stay the same, notably the “Service Above Self” motto and the “4 Way Test.” 

Above all, it’s been the lifelong friendships. To define that, Don said if “20 years separated us, and then someone was to call to get together, the answer would be ‘heck yes!’. 

Today, the club is as vibrant as ever.  Our club was recognized by the District for over 6000 hours of volunteer service this year, local to international.  From the Dominican Republic to Kosovo…where next?  Yes, we have fundraising in order to make financial contributions to help others, but it’s the “hands on” memorable moments where the impact is truly felt. 

Don began to reference some of the highlight programs. CHE – Childhood Hunger and Education, now in its 5th year. Summer reading to young children at North Deering Gardens. Preble Street meals. Locker Project for food-insecure children. The club began to chime in….

…St Vincent DePaul Thanksgiving Dinner, The Veterans Lunch on Veterans Day, Maine Outdoor Challenge with the Boys and Girls Club, the new “Cornhole Championship” for Maine Girls Academy, mentoring at Portland HS and Deering HS, mentoring at Long Creek Youth, Student Scholarships.  

Don interjected that one of the goals of the club was to continue to grow and develop club membership, including the increase of our club’s diversity. He sought ways to help “Friends Who Rarely Attend,” aka Club Members who have difficult schedules, perhaps by giving them a forum to address the club about their work.  He also paused to reflect how Rotary is a place to come to share different opinions and have different views, but we embrace it and welcome it. 

With that, Don opened the floor for reactions. PP Bowen Depke started by thanking Don for his year of service as Club President, which was met with a round of applause. Bowen added that CHE was set up as a 3-5 year plan with arrangements to review, so in the name of truth, we should ask If that vision is still in focus. Dave Small brought forth that we need help on Thursdays in July for summer reading.  PP Russ Burleigh told us that his wife Joan needs some more yarn for her 10th annual knitting project in order to reach her mark of making 150 pairs of kids mittens. Justin Lamontagne gave us good news that his wife had beaten breast cancer, and that he was excited about helping out on the “Making Strides” event in October at Fort Williams Park. PP Peggy “Queenie” Wescott told us how she too had defeated breast cancer earlier this year, and now proudly had a new license plate KYNRSUP. Anagram! “Keep Your Knockers Up”.  Good news shared by Elise Hodgkin, who had lunch with PP Loretta Rowe. LoRo, who has been fighting cancer, is hopeful to return to the club in a few months. Let’s hope so! Katie Brown said the summer Locker Project was in full swing and help was needed with product distribution. Rusty Atwood referenced that we need to reach out to some of our members who have drifted away due to busy schedules, and welcome them back. PP Don Lowry encouraged makeups at other clubs. Dick Giles reminded us of the 800 water filtration systems we helped to implement in the Dominican. PP Peter Goffin reminisced about how Don Z had a previous chance to be club President, back in the Winterfest days, but took a Rotary time-out to be the Dean at Maine Law School. Joe Reagan expressed his appreciation for being invited into Rotary, and has also enjoyed attending other club meetings. PP Dick Hall touted the reactivation of Youth Exchange. Bob Clark spoke of the spirit of volunteerism that is shared between the Rotary and the Boys and Girls Club, with special thanks to PP Kris Rosado who inspired and developed the Maine Outdoor Challenge. 

In closing, Don championed the phrase “How much can get done when no one needs to take the credit?” Well Don, we salute the great job you did this year, but hey, you still have two more weeks to go!
 

06/08/18 Don Zillman, Portland Rotary Wrap-Up Tom Talbott 2018-06-10 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Alan Nye

President Don Zillman opened the meeting by welcoming 52 members, 1 visiting Rotarians and 6 guests. He called on Julie L’Heureux for the invocation which focused on mentoring. After the Pledge of Allegiance, Past President Russ Burleigh led us on the keyboard with the singing of 'God Bless America.' President Don introduced visiting guests and Rotarians (including assistant Rotary District Governor Bill Anderson) and also made note of the June Rotarian birthdays and anniversaries in the club.



Mike Fortunato
(lobster, steak or chicken) brought us up-to-date on our major fundraiser, the Maine Outdoor Challenge, scheduled for the beginning of next week in Freeport. His focus was the meal choice at the dinner on Wednesday and whether those attending had made their choices. Basically, if you haven’t passed on your wishes directly or by way of your team leader, you’re getting lobster.

 



Casey Hartford from Big Brothers Big Sisters spoke about the mentoring program and made a special request for male mentors, since they have 19 boys ready to be matched up with mentors. It takes only an hour a week to become a Big Brother or Big Sister and the need is great. Call 207-773-5437 or visit www.somebigs.org to volunteer.

 


Past President Laura Young talked about the reading program at Lyseth School in Portland and the need for volunteers on Tuesdays and Thursdays, July 5th through August 9th. Contact Laura directly (lyoung@mainecf.org) for more information about this opportunity to “get more than you give.”

 


Past President Dick Hall, as a follow up to his recent email sent to members, spoke about the Rotary Foundation and the importance of giving an annual contribution. He requested that every member of the club make a donation to the Foundation. Dick was also the subject of a friendly tease by Assistant District Governor Bill Anderson for having misplaced the “Pyramid of Peace Award” at the District Conference. This award was for the club’s efforts in meeting all six Rotary Areas of Focus. So that it wouldn’t be lost again, Bill – with a good natured grin – presented the award directly to President Don.



Erik Jorgensen was made a Paul Harris Fellow +2. Club members stood and applauded this outstanding achievement. Congratulations, Erik!

(Photo L-R: Erik Jorgensen and Past President Dick Hall.)
 




(Photo L-R: Dave Putnam, Zoleka Mngqibisa, and Director Kevin Stilphen)

Dave Putnam introduced Director Kevin Stilphen, who introduced our Youth Service Award recipient from Portland Arts and Technology High School (PATHS), Zoleka Mngqibisa. After listening to her many accomplishments, it was clear that this recognition was well deserved.


The weekly Rotary raffle was conducted by Tom Nickerson and Past President Bob Traill graciously picked the Ace of hearts – leaving the sum to be even larger next week. Sorry Bob!

(Photo L-R: Past President Bob Traill and Tom Nickerson.)


 

06/01/18 Bits & Pieces Alan Nye 2018-06-04 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Erik Jorgensen

Bob Martin introduced Friday’s speaker by talking about the power of image, and how in this increasingly visual world, understanding visual communications has taken on new urgency. With that urgency has come increased focus and prominence for schools like the Maine College of Art, which train people not only to add to the Worl’d visual resources, but to help others understand and make use of them.

On Friday we heard from Laura Freid, who has served as the President of MECA for the past year or so, following a career with Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Project. 

With 500 full-time undergrads plus students in the MFA and MAT programs as well as a base faculty of 30, the College is a major presence in downtown Portland.  25% of those who graduate stay on and live in Portland. 

Ms. Freid spoke about how “everything we are doing today succeeds more because of its visual elements and its designs.” Many countries are looking to the US for creative ideas, and students at MECA are being trained to work in the forefront of creative work in the US.  The College has grown more competitive in terms of admissions, and its graduates work in a wide range of professions. Some 60% of the students are interested in design (as opposed to fine art), from fashion, to computer graphics, to graphic arts.  

MECA students arrive in Portland having already worked as artists, developing portfolios and distinguishing themselves in high school.  What does MECA teach its artists? What they learn there, in addition to honing their art skills, includes brainstorming, analysis, and both giving and receiving criticism.  They understand the difference between form and content.  All these are critical abilities for any professional. She also added that MECA students take a range of other college courses in addition to their core art training.

Ms. Freid also spoke about the value of art for art’s sake. Artists generate meaning, empathy, and humanity. And while it is sometimes hard to measure or quantify the value of art, it’s clear that arts and culture deepen community and improve the quality of life. There is also a pecuniary interest, as arts & culture support more than 2000 jobs in Portland. 

She noted that MECA is an “innovation lab” and all the faculty live here in Portland, which is unusual, adding considerably to the richness of our city. We remember Beethoven, Bach and Picasso much more than the rulers of their day or the political arguments that were raging in the background as they worked.