Rotary International


John F. Germ

Rotary District 5160 Governor:

Fred Collignon

Durham Rotary President:
Ravi Saip


Rowel Editor: Phil Price
Rowel Publisher: Jen Liu




March 28th, 2017


The  2017 Harvest Festival will be held on September 17, 2017


2017                                         Calendar for Durham Rotary



1 2 3 4
5 6 7
Joan Webster of the California Women for Agriculture
(Steve Plume)
8 9 10 11
12 13 14
Single Malt Scotch Tasting by Paul Bissett
(Steve Greenwood)
15 16 17 18
19 20 21
Steve Lambert, Butte County Board of Supervisors on Oroville Dam situation
(Larry Bradley)
22 23 24 25
26 27 28
Mr Stephen Arrington, former navy diver who was arrested with John DeLorean for smuggling drugs and recently pardoned.
(Glenn Pulliam)
29 30 31


2 3 4
No Meeting
5 6 7 8
North Valley District Assembly at  Chico Campus of Butte College
9 10 11
(Dave Jessen)
12 13 14 15
16 17 18
No Meeting
19 20 21 22
23 24 25
Dina Zaphris, President & Founder In Situ
(Jim Kirks)
26 27 28 29

President Ravi Saip opened the meeting.  He asked K. R. Robertson to lead the pledge, which he did.  President Ravi then asked Larry Bradley to lead us in a song.  He led us in “God Bless America”.  Jim Patterson then gave the invocation.


Ravi, with the assistance of Jen Liu, showed two video clips.  The first was about a the Rio Branco School for the Deaf created and supported by Rotarians in Brazil  It was narrated, in part, by a young woman who came to the school when she was a young child who could not sign.  She is now a teacher at the school.  The second was a short clip about Rotary Foundation and education. 


Roy Ellis auctioned 4 Giants baseball tickets which he donated to the club.  They are for the game on April 12th at 7:15 pm and are seats 7, 8, 9 and 10 in row 65, section LB104.  Larry Bradley was the successful bidder at $50.00.  



April 8th: North Valley District Assembly.


April 11th: Dave Jessen


April 25th:  Jim Kirks  will present Dina Zaphris, founder of In Situ Foundation.  She will present a program on Dogs Saving Lives by Early Detection of Cancer.


May 9th:   Daryl Polk


May 16th:  Hot Dog picnic at Durham Park


May 23rd:  Jen Liu


June 13th:  ??????


June 27th:  Demotion Party by Mike Wacker.


If a Tuesday is not listed above, there is no meeting that week.




Glenn Pulliam introduced Stephen Arrington, his program for the night.  Larry Bradley introduced Steven Heithecker, who is becoming a member.




The next meeting will not be next week.  Ravi has adopted a twice a month meeting schedule to keep things less expensive as the BCCC has raised the price of our meals and in hopes we will be more members attending fewer meeting.  However, May will have three meetings because the Student Picnic will be in the middle week, and not at the BCCC.


The next meeting will be April 11th with Dave Jessen presenting the program.




Scholarship Interviews


Roy Ellis will be conducting scholarship interviews on May 1, 2017 at 8:00 am.  They will be at the High School.  Anyone who wants to attend, please let Roy know.


Letters From the District Governor Elect

Dear Rotarian,

Exciting news! District 5160 needs administrative support for our Governors and leadership team members. Are you or your firm looking to apply your amazing organizational skills for a worthy cause? Perhaps you would like to get more involved with our Rotary District? We are looking for an independent contractor for freelance work. This could be the perfect project for you!

Due to the critical nature of certain tasks that must be completed for the benefit of all Rotary Clubs in District 5160, the District has budgeted funds for an independent contractor who would provide administrative support to the District.

Services to be performed are administrative and clerical support activities for the District Governor and district leadership team. The ideal candidate will have excellent time management skills and provide the services from his or her home or office, and will have up to date computer equipment, phone and supplies. The fee will be determined, along with the services provided. Invoices will be submitted for services performed to the district monthly. This position will work closely with the District Governor and District Governor Elect and will meet weekly or bi-monthly via in-person meetings, Go to Meeting, or phone conferences.

Skills Required:

Excellent communication skills through phone conferences, in-person meetings, and all forms of electronic communications, including email, text, Facebook and other social media, and on various devices such as smart phones, computers, lap tops, iPads or other tablets.

Good computer skills on MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook or other email platform.

Duties may include, word processing, creating spreadsheets and maintaining data, keeping master district calendar, fielding telephone calls, keeping records online and via document filing. Software skills, internet research abilities are required. A more complete services description is available should you have questions.

This unique position will enjoy many perks including interaction with leaders of all clubs in the District, and a birds-eye view inside District events, socials and District governance. The ideal person will have a friendly, positive attitude and a service-oriented approach to life.

If you would like specific details about the services to be provided, please email Dess Benedetto at by April 3, 2017. This posting is being announced first to Rotarians, and thereafter will be posted to the public. Please feel free to forward this announcement to any qualified candidates you recommend.

Yours in Rotary service,

Gary Vilhauer

Gary Vilhauer
District Governor Elect 2017-18


Rise Against Hunger

(formerly Stop Hunger Now)


The packaging meals for hungry kids will take place on April 29, 2017.  Lunch will follow.




Great news for my fellow Northern Area Rotarians! Recently, you received an invitation from District-Governor-Elect Gary Vilhauer to attend your April 8 Area Assembly. In response to popular demand, we are now doubling the chance that you'll be able to attend! Remember, the goal is to get the Rotary info you've requested into your hands more conveniently than ever! To that end, you can now choose whichever of TWO Spring Training Northern Assemblies that best fit your schedule!

Register at the link below to attend a Spring Assembly ...the one planned for you, or the one in Redding!

Spring Assembly - North Valley (Beernuts) Area Saturday April 8, 2017 -- 8:30 AM to 1:00 PM  .
Location: Butte College Chico Center, 2320 Forest Ave., Chico

Remember, this area assembly has invited PDG George Chaffey to be your lunch speaker. (Never heard him before? You’re in for a treat!)


or as an alternate, you could drive north –


Spring Assembly - North State Area Clubs
 Saturday April 22, 2017 -- 8:30 AM to Noon -- Especially for the Redding/Red Bluff (North State Perfect 10) Area and Mountain Foursters Clubs.
Location: Shasta Union High School District Offices, 2200 Eureka Way, Redding


Topics include Must Know Info for new & long-time Rotarians, tips on Successful Service Projects and Awesome Fundraising Projects, Planning Ahead for Your Club and Member Development Today -- yes, that includes everything from Millennials to Retirees!


Dora Burke, Dar Meyer’s friend, will be delivering the quilts she makes every year for Rotoplast at the April 8th Assembly.


Celebrate with us in Atlanta


Children getting drinking water


It's just a few months until we'll be together at the Rotary Convention in Atlanta - 11-14 June - celebrating The Rotary Foundation's 100th anniversary, networking with old and new friends, and enriching our Rotary experience. If you haven't registered yet, there's still time, and you can save if you register by 31 March. If you've already registered, be sure to invite your Rotary friends.


The Host Organization Committee has planned several exciting events to enhance your stay in Atlanta. For the kickoff event, on the evening of Saturday, 10 June, the dress code is casual, as you'll sit under the stars in Centennial Olympic Park and be entertained by first-class bluegrass music. Grammy Award-winning performer Ricky Skaggs will get everyone up on their feet clapping and dancing to the fiddle and mandolin, and cloggers will perform in their country style. Food and drinks will be available from food trucks and beverage carts stationed at strategic locations. We're anticipating a packed event, so purchase your tickets early!

From Monday through Wednesday, 12-14 June, you can choose from more than 100 breakout sessions on a wide variety of topics. Here's a sneak peek at topics being developed for Atlanta:

Be sure to check the website regularly for more program highlights.




Bring guests, who you think you can interest in becoming a member, to meetings.  We will be having a visit from the District Governor or an Assistant District Governor to assist us with membership.  In the meantime please invite Durham business owners and/or managers to one of our meeting.




Glenn Pulliam volunteered that his son Gabrial, who lives in New York, was recently nominated for a Daytime Emmy.  Glenn contributed $20.  Roy Ellis didn’t think that was enough for such an honor and added $30.


Steve Plume auctioned the Grinder .  Mike Wacker got it for $50.


Must Be Present To Win

Mary Sakuma was not present to win this drawing.





Glenn Pulliam secured Stephen Arrington of Paradise who spoke about his life and his fight against drug use by youth. He talks so fast and covered so much of his life that I couldn’t do justice him by trying to cover it myself.  It is easier to insert the following from an article by Mary Nugent that appeared in the Chico Enterprise-Record in 2016 which basically summarizes much of what he talked about.  It should be noted that I have modified the article with the addition of two bracketed paragraphs which add to and update the article, which are matters he discussed:


“Stephen Arrington has a message. “I share this. I’m a combat vet, a trained warrior. And I fell because of drugs. Now I’m fighting for youth. I’m at war for our kids. It used to be the front lines were overseas but now, they’re here.”


Arrington is talking about the war to save youth from drugs, as well as alienation, bullying, gangs, prison and suicide. It’s a tall order, and 23 years ago, he started Drugs Bite for the cause. He travels the country speaking to youth and the people who work with them.


Drugs Bite is part of Arrington’s eclectic resume: Navy bomb disposal frogman, convicted as codefendant in the John Z. DeLorean trial, addict and prison time, chief engineer for an inmate fire crew, recognized by President Ronald Reagan for saving a life, and hired by Captain Jacques Cousteau as chief diver and expedition leader.

For Arrington, 67, it’s been quite the ride, and it’s not over. “My story,” he said, “is about hope.”


He has spoken at more than 3,000 public school assemblies, at youth and adult lockups, universities, youth organizations and churches. He spoke during the Foster Youth Leadership Convention last year at Chico State University. He is a writer and lay youth minister.


After high school, Arrington enlisted in the Navy, where he served four tours in the Vietnam war and was a bomb disposal diver. He became acquainted with marijuana, was discharged from the Navy, developed an addiction and eventually, made associations with people involved in a major drug cartel.


He said he was under the threat of hitmen to copilot a plane from Colombia to California loaded with 650 pounds of cocaine. He was arrested in 1982 in Los Angeles and was a codefendant in the infamous John Z. DeLorean trial.


[He indicated that what happened is that he was lured away from his studies at San Diego State University by a person, who offered a job as a pilot and right-hand man with a promise of a large salary which would be increased in future years. But, unknown to him, this person was actually a cocaine transporter for the Medellin Drug Cartel. Soon, Arrington found himself being ordered to co-pilot a plane to Colombia. When he first refused, men with guns convinced him to go along for the ride. Later, Arrington was ordered to drive a cocaine-loaded car from Florida to California. At this point he wanted out so he abandoned the car and tried to walk away. But heavily armed undercover DEA agents arrested him].


Arrington was sentenced to five years in federal prison. “I pled guilty because I was guilty,” he said.

He found the monotony and finality of prison life suffocating, and made the decision to follow God and do something about his moral character. It paid off. He joined an inmate fire crew, where he was elected chief engineer and helped in numerous emergencies, including a rescue of people trapped in a crashed military aircraft in the Mojave Desert. His sentence was reduced to three years.


Six months later, he was released from prison and began teaching at the College of Oceaneering in Los Angeles Harbor. After saving the life of a young man who was drowning, he was honored by the Red Cross. He could barely believe it when a year later, he was invited to join the Cousteau Society, and was hired as a chief diver and expedition leader.


While working with the Cousteau Society, Arrington said he had some wild experiences with sharks while he was in a plastic underwater cage. “At one point I was eyeball to eyeball with a shark. But the plastic cage was the adventure of a lifetime. Prison is like a cage too, but it’s different. It’s a fear that doesn’t go away.”


After five years, Arrington resigned from the exciting job to become a full-time drug education and motivational speaker to youth across the country.


Drugs Bite really started with Arrington’s own youth. “I had a childhood where nobody cared for me, and the Navy became my family. I understand when kids feel alone. I really address the family unit, because divorce is rampant. Every kid knows kids whose parents got divorced. Bedrooms of teens today are multi-media centers. How much time they spend on the Internet, Facebook, texting and school — so then how much time do they spend with their parents?”


Arrington said it’s a complicated problem and too often tragic. “It’s a tough time to grow up in America,” he said, sharing statistics from the Centers for Disease Control Medical Library. “Suicide is the number three killer in kids ages 10 to 14, and the fastest growing group is girls. In ages 15 to 25, suicide is the number two killer.”


Arrington, who has three children of his own, has studied many situations that affect youth, including divorce and foster care. “So many kids don’t have good role models. I work to motivate young people to live a life of meaning. I can’t preach or bore them, so I tie in jail bars and shark cages. My message to them is to be disciplined, study hard and be motivated, and make right choices. I always tell kids: If you make a mistake, it doesn’t mean you are the mistake.”


He said young people don’t realize the world they enter when they use drugs and break the law. “It’s a slippery path. You dance a criminal waltz and end up in a lot of trouble. It’s miserable and scary.”

Youth can benefit from hearing about his experiences, he said. “I know that kids don’t like to be told what to do. Prison is horrendously boring. Somebody is telling you what to do all the time. You obey instantly or there is punishment.”


Drugs Bite isn’t Arrington’s only project. He and his wife, Cindy, founded the nonprofit Dream Machine Foundation 17 years ago. In rural Fiji in the South Pacific, a team of seven surgeons and a dentist offer free medical and dental clinics. They have treated more than 32,000 Fijians with life- and limb-saving surgeries.


“I am on the short list for a Presidential Pardon (from the 1982 drug smuggling conviction), with some interesting circumstances. President Obama has steered away from pardons for serious or high publicity drug offenders ... My pardon application has been pending for over eight years. Then on Nov. 13, 2015, I got an email from the pardon attorney asking for a lot of updated information on my foundation, my work with youths, and for some specific court documents.”


Arrington said he believes the pardon will happen. “I’m hoping to get it expunged. I have already been forgiven by God. With the rest of my life, I’m doing good work. I like the feeling of it, and I use it as a tool to give others hope.”


[It should be noted that since the article above was written, he has received a Presidential Pardon from President Obama.  Also, another thing not mentioned in the article is the work of he and his wife in providing water, septic and mobile clinics in Figi through their “The Dream Machine Foundation”].


From Rotary International:


Rotary bringing the world to Atlanta in June

Bill Gates to keynote convention 

ATLANTA, Ga. (Feb. 14, 2017) – Rotary’s 108th annual international convention June 10–14 is expected to attract 40,000 Rotary club members from over 160 countries, and will inject an estimated $52.3 million into Atlanta’s economy.

Often described as a “mini-United Nations”, Rotary’s third convention in Atlanta will transform the Georgia World Congress Center into a cultural kaleidoscope as the organization’s global network of volunteers gather to exchange ideas on how to improve lives and bring positive, lasting change to communities around the world. 

Registrants will engage in workshops and hear from a lineup of world-class speakers, including Bill Gates, co-chair, of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Gates Foundation and Rotary International have an ongoing match of 2:1 to support polio eradication efforts up to $35 million a year. Today in Bill and Melinda Gates’ Annual Letter they reaffirmed the important role Rotary has played in polio eradication.  

“Rotary and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have been working together on polio eradication for a long time, and our strong partnership will continue through the final years of the effort,” said Rotary International President John Germ.  “With the most effective resources in place, it’s possible that we will soon see the last case of polio in history. At the convention, Bill will say more about how we can — and will — end polio.” 

Bill Gates will speak at this year's Rotary International Convention. 

Organized by Rotary International in conjunction with the Atlanta Host Organizing Committee of local Rotary members, registrants of the convention will also get to experience Atlanta’s southern charm with visits to the World of Coca-Cola, the College Football Hall of Fame and an Atlanta Braves game.  

“The Rotary International Convention provides an exceptional opportunity to bring together more than 40,000 civic and business community leaders from throughout the world to Atlanta to enjoy our unique brand of southern hospitality,” said William Pate, president and CEO of the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau. “The addition of Microsoft founder Bill Gates as a keynote speaker reflects the importance and good work that Rotary does worldwide.”

The global eradication of polio has been Rotary’s top priority since 1985. Through the Global Polio Eradication Initiative – a public-private partnership that includes Rotary, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) – the incidence of polio has plummeted by more than 99.9 percent, from about 350,000 cases a year in 1988 to just 37 confirmed in 2016. Rotary, including matching funds from the Gates Foundation, has donated $1.6 billion to polio eradication. 

Atlanta’s first Rotary convention took place 100 years ago, when The Rotary Foundation was established with its first contribution of $26.50. The Rotary Foundation’s assets have grown to approximately $1 billion, and more than $3 billion have been spent on projects and scholarships that promote peace, fight disease, provide clean water, support education, save mothers and children, and grow local economies.

About Rotary

Rotary brings together a global network of volunteers dedicated to tackling the world’s most pressing humanitarian challenges. Rotary connects 1.2 million members of more than 35,000 Rotary clubs in over 200 countries and geographical areas. Their work improves lives at both the local and international levels, from helping families in need in their own communities to working toward a polio-free world. To access broadcast quality video footage and still photos go to: The Newsmarket


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