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Rotary Club of Tiburon-Belvedere

Fellowship and Service

Address: Sam's Anchor Cafe
Tiburon/Belvedere, CA 94920
Phone: 415-789-0161

Club of Tiburon-Belvedere

Monday, March 29, 2021



Cindy Siciliano, of the Rotary Club of Tiburon Sunset, has been helping the residents of the homeless encampment at Dunphy Park in Sausalito. Linda Emberson and George Landau of the Rotary Club of Tiburon-Belvedere joined her on Sunday, March 7, to prepare and serve a pancake breakfast.

Technology and Disaster Preparedness

“It doesn’t matter what we say, actions define us,” said Jacques Sochan, who learned that lesson from his grandfather. He’s been living in Tiburon since 2005 and is concerned about disasters, and so he's taking action to prepare for the possibility of a flood, fire or earthquake. He does it, because “This is my home, and I want to feel safe here,” he said. He talked about his grandmothers, who lived in Poland, with one in a city and one in a village. The nearest police officer was 20 miles away from village and visited once a week, and his grandmother in the city rented a room to an officer. There was no crime in either place.

“In Tiburon, we need to prepare for disasters,” he said. Tiburon is between the Hayward and San Andreas faults, and the Calaveras fault could be the source of a big disaster in the Bay Area. Changes in air pressure, quality and density affects the earth’s crust, and we could have a major earthquake earlier than predicted. “In the case of an earthquake, we’ll be cut off,” he said, adding that he’s been working with Dr. Thomas Cromwell on disaster preparedness.

He believes technology can protect Tiburon from the repercussions of earthquakes. He bought a drone that allows him to monitor Tiburon area, and he’s trying to get a bicycle so he can ride to St. Hilary Church, for example. If there were a disaster, he could launch the drone, and it could check for damage within five minutes. He can also use it to look for lost dogs, cats or husbands. It has a specialized camera and sensors, so it can measure liquid and tell if gas is coming out a house. In addition, it can locate a fire and find out which gases are being released.

Purple Air Sensors became popular when we were experiencing poor air quality as a result of wildfires, but they’re not very accurate. The EPA has a program to loan high-tech sensors to the community, but they have to apply. The community could raise money to purchase a sensor, and it would cost $10,000 to $15,000.

Floods are also a danger, and several years ago, we had an atmospheric river that brought 5 to 6 inches of rain in an hour. One historic rainstorm in 1862 lasted for 28 days, and if that happened now, it would cost $750 billion dollars to recover.

Another gadget that would help is a Robotnik (above left), which has wheels and can turn around, and it has lots of sensors that identify problems like gas leaks. Yet another is a surfboard (right), which can go under a house to find out what’s going on.

“My biggest dream is this. It’s a hovercraft,” he said, showing us a photo. It travels 45 to 55 mph on water, and “Even if it’s choppy, you can go,” he said. “If we’re cut off at low tide, we can’t launch a boat,” he said, but a Hovercraft will work to move people across the bay to hospitals. The main drawback is its expense, and he has started a nonprofit, Ring Mountain Initiative that accepts donations to purchase one.

My biggest dream is this. It’s a hovercraft,” he said, showing us a photo. It travels 45 to 55 mph on water, and “Even if it’s choppy, you can go,” he said. “If we’re cut off at low tide, we can’t launch a boat,” he said, but a Hovercraft will work to move people across the bay to hospitals. The main drawback is its expense, and he has started a nonprofit, Ring Mountain Initiative that accepts donations to purchase one.

Community involvement is important, and Corte Madera has neighborhood response groups, but Tiburon doesn’t. He would like to create similar groups, equip each one with a drone and train someone to operate it.

He showed a photo of a display with lots of dots, and he told us that each dot is a drone, and the drones can fly and be directed by a computer program. “We could protect the entire Tiburon Peninsula,” he said.

Jacques lives near the Tiburon Peninsula Club and is a block captain. He walks through the neighborhood three times a day, checking for problems. He hears stories about thieves cutting catalytic converters off Priuses to get the previous metal they contain. His car was ransacked, and lots of packages are stolen as well.

Questions and Answers

“What is your day job,” asked Marshall Gross.

“I do commercials for a few businesses,” said Jacques, and he also designs websites and does marketing for them.

Jacques mentioned that he’s a geologist, and Bill Lindqvist said, “I’m also a geologist.” He reported that the USGS set up earthquake prediction system and took it down because they couldn’t predict earthquakes accurately. “We’re in the realm of the gods when it comes to earthquakes. … These things are not predictable,” he said. He added that he has a satellite phone so he’ll have a way to communicate in a disaster.

Jacques said it’s also a good to have a landline.

Linda Emberson lived in Santa Cruz during the Loma Prieta earthquake, and “We did have our landline,” she said.

Revati Natesan said that she was in Shoreline Park, between Main Street and the Railroad and Ferry Depot Museum, and a drone hovered over her, which she found disturbing. She asked about laws governing drones.

Jacques said that some drones are toys, and owners can fly them up to 400 feet. He has a big one that requires registration, and it has a number. However, he said that in an area like Shoreline Park, you should not fly a drone.

“How do you get a drone to go underneath a building?” asked Linda Emberson, and Jacques said one would use a gadget on wheels.

He added that every fire station should have a drone with someone trained to operate it. Also, the local rescue project has six volunteers from the Corinthian Yacht Club.



A small Rotary club in Marin County is making big changes in people’s lives in Ecuador. The Rotary Club of Marin Evening has launched three microcredit projects in low-income communities in the last several years, and Keith Axtell, a member of the club who was instrumental in the projects' success, oined us to tell us about them. “Your club partnered with us on these projects,” he said.

Small Businesses

The newest endeavor is a microcredit and business development project in Santa Elena Province. The goal is to establish small manufacturing and craft businesses so local residents can make a product they can sell. “People do better if they make something, than if they sell something someone else has made,” said Keith, explaining that the project will allow a group of low-income and unemployed people to become self-sufficient. Global projects require a local Rotary club to be a partner, and Marin Evening’s partners are the Rotary Club of Salinas Spondylus; Hogar de Cristo, a nonprofit in Guayaquil, which they’ve worked with in the past; the Province of Santa Elena; and the City of Salinas.

The program will have five or six phases, and 100 people will participate and receive training in business planning and development. They will also have training in marketing and social media, so they won’t be dependent on having a storefront. Hogar de Cristo will provide vocational training in a manufacturing or craft industry, which might be baking or making shows, whatever they’re interested in. They will microcredit loans to establish the businesses, and Hogar de Cristo will provide business mentoring and marketing assistance. “It’s kind of a full package, and this has worked well for us in the past,” said Keith.

Despite Covid-19, the project is moving forward with physical distancing and masks, with some parts being done virtually.

Keith showed us a photo of some women cutting out sandals in a shoemaking business in the first project. His club started it in 2015 as part of a previous global project, in which 605 people from a large slum area participated and got business development training. They received $248,000 in microloans, allowing them to establish 87 new businesses in Guayaquil.

He showed us a pair of sandals and explained that they’re popular footwear, because Guayaquil is hot most of the year. The women can make and sell them at profit for $12 or $14 a pair, and they’ve signed a contract with a retailer, which was one of the goals. In another project, a group of women began making backpacks, and they too got a contract with a retailer. Disinfectant is a big need in the large poor community, and another company produces disinfectant. A market entrepreneurial fair on the Malecón in Guayaquil gave them an opportunity to show their wares.

Fish Market

“This has been a great partnership project,” Keith, and he explained that the Fishermen’s Association has a contract with the local Rotary club to operate the fish market. It was a challenging project, and “We’re very proud of how it turned out,” he said.

Questions and Answers

“Why do they call it a microcredit loan?” asked Angelo Capozzi.

“They start at $50 to $100,” Keith replied, and they are considered small loans. Small loans paid back in weekly installments has been successful, and “They pay back in small increments as they earn,” he explained. “They have to pay the loans back. This is not a giveaway program,” he said. The frequency of payments also means that it’s obvious if they’re starting to go off track, and someone can step in to help them. Microcredit projects have a high success rate and the first project in Esmeraldas had a 100 percent success rate.

Angelo said that he was happy that our club has given support.

George Landau pointed out that Keith mentioned that men do fishing, and women do the cleaning. He recalled that in Africa, only women got the loans, because the men weren’t reliable. “Who gets the loan? Is it a partnership or an individual?” he asked.

“It’s a single person loan,” Keith responded, adding that most clients—70 percent—are women. “Women are more accustomed to working in groups,” he said, and they are more likely to use their earnings to benefit the family, spending it on items like food and education.

Keith and his wife Holly, who is a former District Governor, have been to Ecuador several times but have worked mainly on Zoom for the most recent project. “Because of Zoom, we can keep in touch well,” said Keith, and they get regular progress reports.

“If you go again, be sure to go to the Galapagos,” said John Kaufmann. “It’s one of the most fascinating trips I’ve taken.”



Aprl 21                  Mary Kay Sweeney, Homeward Bound of Marin

Meetings will be on Zoom until further notice. If you'd like to attend a meeting
or be a guest speaker, please send an email to rotary@telli.com



Wednesday, March 31       Happy Hour, 4 p.m., Club at Harbor Point. No host

May, TBD                           Educator of the Year Awards




All in-person Rotary meetings and events have been cancelled or postponed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We will be meeting on Zoom at 4 p.m. on Wednesday until further notice. If you'd like to join us, we'd be delighted to meet you. Please go to https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81915154482?pwd=MDVHWWVjemovQ2ovdjJkZzczeW9qZz09,

Our usual meeting place is Sam's Anchor Cafe, and we gather at 5:30 p.m. for an early evening meeting on the first and third Wednesday of the month and for lunch at 12:15 p.m. on the second and fourth Wednesday of the month. Most weeks, either a guest speaker makes a presentation or we have a program. Attendance is $10. Food and drinks are no-host  We welcome guests. If you'd like to hear a speaker, offer to be one or find out more about Rotary, pay us a visit. We'd be happy to make your acquaintance.

Board of Directors Meetings
Meetings of the Board of Directors are open to all members and take place monthly at a time to be announced. For information, please send an email to judith@telli.com.

Contact us at rotary@telli.com.

If you'd like to be a guest speaker, please contact Marianne Strotz at properties@pacbell.net.

Send mail to Rotary Club of Tiburon-Belvedere, P.O. Box 220, Tiburon, CA 94920.

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tbrotary. Hope you "like" us!



Scroll down to see our photo gallery of Rotarians at work and play!



The Rotary Club of Tiburon has donated funds to the following local organizations that are serving Marin's most vulnerable residents during this challenging time:

• Ambassadors of Hope & Opportunity www.ahoproject.org

• Canal Alliance https://canalalliance.org/

• SF Marin Food Bank https://www.sfmfoodbank.org/

• St. Vincent de Paul https://www.vinnies.org/

• Vivalon https://www.vivalon.org

In addition:
• To support local business, the club made a donation to the Tiburon Peninsula Chamber of Commerce's COVID-19 Tiburon Small Business Fund. https://www.tiburonchamber.org/

• To assist families need, we purchased 10 boxes of fresh produce from Servino Ristorante to donate to the food pantry at The Ranch. www.servino.com

• To help give kids whose parents are financially challenged a good summer, we donated funding for scholarships to The Ranch's summer camp program. www.theranchtoday.org

Food insecurity is an increasing problem. If you'd like to find out more about it and how you can help, go to https://www.mymove.com/moving/guides/food-donation/.


The Rotary Club of Tiburon-Belvedere supports a wide range of programs, with a focus on youth, literacy and community. We believe that reaching out to others makes a better world and encourage others to join us. Here's what we're supporting in 2020-2021

Youth—Investing in the Future

• Ambassadors of Hope and Opportunity: Support to provide a safety net of stable housing, guidance and community connections for young people 16 to 25, who are homeless or in danger of becoming homeless in Marin County.

• Del Mar Middle School’s Liberia Project: Support for the students’ service-learning projects to help their sister school in Liberia, thus encouraging altruism at home and helping children in a disadvantaged country across the world.

Dave Hutton Rotary Award for Service Above Self: An annual award to a graduating eighth-grader with a record of outstanding community service at Del Mar Middle School.

• Educator of the Year Awards: Annual awards to outstanding educators in local schools, whose unique projects give children a worldview that encourages them to become good citizens

• Global Book Exchange: Support for the Global Book Exchange in San Rafael, which collects lightly-used books and redistributes them to teachers at schools with limited budgets, disadvantaged families and nonprofits that serve children, as well as schools throughout the world.

• Marielos Fund: A scholarship to send a young woman in El Salvador to medical school.

• Rotaplast International: Support for volunteer medical teams to provide life-changing surgery for children with cleft-lip and palate in needy communities around the world.

• Rotary Youth Leadership Awards: Scholarships so high school sophomores and juniors can attend a special camp that guides them to develop their leadership skills.

• Young Performers International: Scholarships for kids to take music lessons and develop their performing skills. Music makes kids smarter!

Meaningful Projects—Service Above Self

• Canal Alliance: Support for a population that includes many of Marin County's essential workers, who have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 pandemic.

• Marin Villages: Support for programs that help seniors age in their own homes. Members pay a small fee and can enjoy social get-togethers and access to volunteers for help with tasks such as getting to appointments, changing light bulbs or assisting with pets.

• Service to the Community Awards: Recognition for people who serve the community in meaningful ways, but don’t often get acknowledgement.

• St. Vincent de Paul: Support for helping Marin’s neediest residents obtain nutritious food, affordable housing, meaningful employment and a voice in the community.

• Vivalon: Underwriting for Whistlestop's Thanksgiving Feast for Seniors.

District Designated Funds

Rotary's District Designated Funds helped establish this sewing shop in Esmeraldas, Ecuador. Photo: Courtesy of Keith and Holly Axtell

Funds from the Rotary International Foundation's annual campaign earn District Designated Funds for our club. This year, we're contributing our international funds to the Rotary Club of Marin Evening's new microcredit project in Ecuador and the Rotary Club of Mill Valley's greenhouse project in the high Andes n Peru.

District Designated Funds also support local projects, and this year our funds purchased boxes of produce for the food pantry at The Ranch.



Marianne Strotz, Revati Natesan and Geneva Michaelcheck at Happy Hour at the Club at Harbor Point. Photo: Marshall Gross


Julie Aubrey visited from Rotary International's headquarters in Evanston, Illinois.

(l. to r.) Irene Russell, Kathleen Defever, Helen Lindqvist and Bill Lindqvist at the Tiburon Peninsula Chamber of Commerce mixer at the downtown Tiburon firehouse.


President Annette Gibbs presented Jessica Hochkiss with a check for $1,000  for The Ranch from the club’s foundation, which will help low-income children attend day camp. “We currently have two large summer camps going on,” said Jessica, and she explained that they take kids to Angel Island every day. “The camp has gone on for 40 years,” she said, and some of today’s campers have parents who attended when they were young.

The Ranch is a nonprofit, and “Every little bit helps,” she said, expressing her gratitude.


Past-president Linda Emberson and incoming President Annette Gibbs at the Installation Celebration

Lata Setty, Zohre Grothe and Lata's son, Deven Ramachandran

Warren and Irene Russell


Having fun at the Tiburon Classic Car Show!
Rotary in the community: Cindy Siciliano and Linda Emberson made it look easy, as they spent the day flipping burgers, hot dogs and corn on the cob for scores of happy customers.


Past District Governor Ron Gin, now district membership chair, presents Mike Keran with a pin in honor of his being chosen Rotarian of the Month for District 5150.

District Governor Jayne Hulbert and First Husband Gene Duffy paid the club a visit.

Cindy Siliciano of the Tiburon Sunset Rotary Club (left) and President Linda Emberson of the Tiburon-Belvedere club get ready to toss goodies to kids at the Labor Day weekend hometown parade. (Photo: Marshall Gross)


Welcome New Members

Membership chair Angelo Capozzi welcomed new members Neelam Kanwar (upper photo) and Lynn Spitler (lower photo).


Jim Deitz

It is with profound sadness that President Linda Emberson announces the passing of beloved member Jim Deitz on Friday, July 13. Jim exemplified Rotary's motto, Service Above Self, and his altruistic spirit was a model for everyone. He was devoted to his family, loved dogs and was one of the best. We'll miss him terribly.


Good Work

(l. to r.) Lisa Brinkmann of Marin Villages accepts a check from Marianne Strotz, and Michael Heckmann presents a check to Michael Keran for St. Vincent de Paul. Photo: Lynn Fox


Rotarian of the Month

District 5150 named Michael Keran Rotarian of the Month for May. Mike's much-deserved honor is in recognition of his ongoing commitment to St. Vincent de Paul and helping the homeless in Marin County. In addition, he recruits a crew of Rotarians to serve lunch at the St. Vincent de Paul Free Dining Room in San Rafael every month. May marked the beginning of the 12th year of this service project.


Annette Gibbs (left) and Shelby Gross joined the Rotary contingent and got into the spirit
of this year's first Friday Night on Main


Celebrating Earth Day

Having Fun at Friday Night on Main

Angelo Capozzi (left) and Neelam Kanwar planted trees at Homeward Bound as part of Rotary International's initiative to plant one tree for every Rotarian. Photo: Marshall Gross


Lending a Hand at St. Vincent de Paul

Stalwart volunteers (l. to r.) Klaus Meinberg, Michael Keran and Angelo Capozzi in the kitchen of the St. Vincent de Paul Free Dining Room in San Rafael. The Rotary Club of Tiburon-Belvedere serves lunch on the fourth Thursday of every month and will begin its twelfth year of volunteering, under Mike Keran's leadership, in May. Angelo is team leader for the club's participation in the REST program, and he and Klaus also served dinner to a group of homeless men at St. Hilary's Church the same day. Service Above Self at its best!


First meeting at Sam's


Rotary does REST

The Rotary Club of Tiburon-Belvedre hosted dinner for a group of 25 homeless men who were spending the night at St. Hilary's Church on Thursday, February 15, as part of the REST (Rotating Emergency Shelter Team) program.

Members of the Rotary crew (above, l. to r.), John Kaufmann, Angelo Capozzi, Brian Walker, Raja Ramachandran and Deven Ramachandran, took a break before serving dinner to guests in Tarantino Hall. Lata Setty, Annette Gibbs, Bill Goldberg, Zohre Grothe, Karl Hoppe and Lata Setty were also on hand to help. The evening featured good conversation, great appetites and uplifting camaraderie, as well as good food.which included homemade lasagna that Deven, Lata’s son, helped prepare as a family Valentine’s Day project, and Mary Kaufmann'a delicious oatmeal cookies and cupcakes decorated with hearts.


Karen Glader welcomes new member Valerie Marsh to the club and gives her a Rotary pin.


Rotarians have fun in the Day Before-Labor Day parade.



The Town of Tiburon issued a proclamation in honor of the Rotary Club of Tiburon-Belvedere's 40th anniversary, which we will celebrate in June, and the 100th anniversary of the Rotary International Foundation. Pictured, left to right, are George Landau, President Linda Emberson and Tiburon Mayor Jim Fraser. Photo: Marsall Gross.


Visitor from Afar

Rehmah Kasule (above left), with President Linda Emberson) is the Immediate Past President of the Rotary Club of Kampala/Impala in Uganda. She took the opportunity to visit us when she was at a conference in San Francisco in October. In 2010, she received recognition at the White House for her work in empowering women and met President Obama. She then wrote a book, From Gomba to the White House. She shared an African proverb: “When you walk fast, you walk alone. When you walk with others, you go far.”



Marshall Gross donated two beautiful puppets that he won in a gift basket to Rotaplast's mission in Cebu City, Philippines. Dr. Angelo Capozzi (with the big dog) reports that the puppets are making kids smile every day before undergoing surgery, and the mission is going well.


Tiburon Challenger

Charlie Oewel, representing the Rotary Club of Tiburon-Belvedere, accepted a generous check from Ashoo Vaid (middle) of Wells Fargo and tournament director Brendan Curry (right) at the conclusion of the Tiburon Challenger. The funds will go to the club's education projects. (Photo: Getty Images for Revd)


Rotary welcomes Kimberly Brooks

District Governor Jeri Fujimoto (center) inducted new member Kimberley Brooks (right) as Kimi's sponsor, Joe Lavigne, looked on. Photo: Marshall Gross



Tari Nix and friend pull wagons with books for kids from the Global Book Exchange, as Marianne Strotz walks alongside, wheeling a Rotary sign. (Photo: Marshall Gross)

To see more photos of the parade, go to www.tiburonrotary.org and click on "Photo Gallery."


President Linda Emberson (left) of Tiburon-Belvedere and President Marilyn Nemzer of Tiburon Sunset hitch a ride with Michael Heckmann in the Day Before Labor Day Parade. (Photo: Marshall Gross)

Dana and Chester (left), making friends.

Winter in August was the theme of the Tiburon Peninsula Chamber of Commerce's mixer at the Boardwalk. President Linda Emberson took the prize for the most creative hat.


Jon Rankin views the on-court action at the annual Bocce Ball Tournament, a fundraiser for Rotaplast International. (Photo: J. Wilson)


Changing of the Guard

Thanks to President Marianne

President Linda Emberson (left) thanks outgoing President Marianne Strotz (right) for her two outstanding years of leadership with a special Rotary jacket, as Karen Glader, the club's new secretary, looks on. (Photo: Marshall Gross)


Honors for Angelo

Dr. Angelo Capozzi (left) and Dr. John Kaufmann with a child who underwent surgery during a Rotaplast mission to Peru in May 2016. (Photo: Courtesy of Rotaplast International)


Service Above Self

Dave Hutton presents the Capt. Dave Hutton Rotary Service Above Self Award to Kendall Hermann, graduating senior at Del Mar Middle School, for her outstanding performance in community service. The presentation took place at a special awards assembly in June. Photo: Marshall Gross


Teachers of the Year

(Left to right) RUSD Superintendent Nancy Lynch, Bel Aire School's Kelly Morphy, Reed School's Ross Modlin, Rotarian George Landau and Erin Turner of St. Hilary School (photo: Marshall Gross)



Mary Kaufmann and Jon Rankin got into the spirit of Carnaval, a fundraiser for the Rotary Club of Tiburon-Belvedere. For more, see the photo gallery at www.tiburonrotary.org. (Photo: Marshall Gross)


In 1976, Tim Severin decided to test the theory. He built a similar boat, in Bantry, where Tom’s family is from, and he sailed it to North America, demonstrating that Brendan could have done it. [Severin wrote a book about his experiences, The Brendan Voyage, and it was made into a film.]

Severin also encountered a tribe of American Indians with white skin, brown and reddish hair and blue eyes. The name of the tribe was Duhare, a name that comes from ancient Celtic. Their carvings were the same as those in the west of Ireland, and the only person who reputedly reached North America early was Brendan, suggesting that he and the tribe are connected.

Tom’s family coat of arms has a red hand, and legend has it that when the first Europeans came to North America, one of Tom’s ancestors cut off his right hand and threw it to the shore so he could be the first to touch the new land.

“Was your ancestor called Lefty O’Neill?” quipped David Albert.

Terry Graham said she has done some research and discovered that when the first ships arrived from England, some of the tribes met the ships and tried to communicate with the sailors. Welsh sailors understood what the Indians were saying, leading to speculation the natives’ language came from Ancient Welsh, which is also related to Hebrew.

Tom added that the Irish and Welsh languages are Gaelic, and the first people in England and Ireland were Phoenicians, who are from the Levant region of the eastern Mediterranean.