The meeting was brought to order by Andrew H. and Lloyd G. led the pledge of allegiance.

Hal R. called for visitors and guests, but the only “guests” today were two Red Badge members to be announced later.

Henry V. provided a reflection on what we love about California; it is important to remember why we’re here even with high cost, traffic congestion, long service queues, etc. Henry reminded us of some of the unique California experiences: driving pacific coast highway, visiting Yosemite, benefiting from the diversity in culture and cuisine and the regions’ productivity that provides half of the fruits and nuts to the U.S. and powers the technology industry around the world. President Andrew H. requested a repeat of this reflection on each quarterly estimated tax payment due date.

Andrew H. gave some quick kudos to Andrew S. and Rami W. for all of the behind the scenes work they do on behalf of the club.

Tina O.H. reported out on this morning’s breakfast at St. Lukes. Lots of help from club members was provided, and the food was all appreciatively received.

**Event announcements and reminders**
  • May 17: Rotary District event on the USS Hornet. Click here more details.
  • May 19: Los Gatos creek clean-up with the Interact group. Meet at 9:45 at the creek trailhead, essentially under the main street overpass below the hair salon. Wear comfortable clothes, and please bring work gloves and water for yourself. Contact Andrew H. with questions.
  • June 14: Annual Family BBQ. Tickets will be available starting next week. Some food and soft drinks will be provided, but please sign up for a potluck item and BYOB. The event starts around 5PM.
  • June 25: Roast and Toast (formerly “debunking”). Enjoy a roast and toast of Andrew H.’s presidency year at Villa Ragusa. Tickets will be available soon for this evening affair.
  • July 30: Lisa N.C. announced that there will be a Fisher House (veteran family support) dinner on this Tuesday evening in Palo Alto. If you want to cook at the Fisher House, please arrive by 4:30PM, otherwise bring your cooked item by 5:30PM. Lisa will circulate a link for a Google doc to sign up.
  • Amy P. encouraged members to send her info on upcoming events or photos/videos from events they are sponsoring so they can be appropriately mentioned on our website.

Andrea L. announced that Irena U. was experiencing some medical issues, and a sympathy/support card was circulated.

Amy P. showed a video she recorded at the Great Race of a “30 something” woman who was touched by Rotary in scholarships and international experience at an early age; Rotary really changed her life. She traveled to the Great Race because it was sanctioned and Rotary sponsored. This kind of simple story is a powerful way to get the message of Rotary across to others. You have probably seen stories like this too, so turn on your phone’s camera, and send the video to Amy!

Hal R. and John C., along with Andrew H. welcomed our club’s newest Red Badge members. Hal introduced Sandeep C. and John introduced Randy C. Both Sandeep and Randy join our club with the legacy of fathers who were Rotarians. Randy’s father Ray was a long time force in our Los Gatos club and community.

Tina O.H. then introduced today’s speaker, Paul J., also a club red badge member. Paul is Superintendent of the Los Gatos Unified School District, and is already signed up to do an in-depth District visioning presentation in September. Paul used the time today to talk a bit about his background, his philosophy, and offered a quick assessment on where things stand at the District.
Playing off the “Thrill of Victory...the Agony of Defeat” line from ABC’s Wide World of Sports, Paul observed that in real life it is almost always the opposite. The agony of defeat or failure almost always precedes the thrill of victory, and it is grit, determination, will, hard work and fearlessness that lead to that thrill. He provided several interesting examples of athletes who came back from stinging failures to meet their personal goals and set records.
The sports theme is important to Paul since he was a serious high school swimmer. During high school, he left Sacramento and boarded at a home in Southern California to train with the U.S.-leading Mission Viejo swim team. He practiced with several other athletes who went on to become Olympians, and his coach told him he could possibly become the best butterfly swimmer in the world. During 1979 he achieved some important race milestones, but his Olympic dreams ended with the U.S. pulling out of the U.S.S.R-based Olympics to be held in 1980.
Still, Paul’s “thrill of victory” was what came out of this experience. A full scholarship to college. The ability to pass on the love of the support to his family, and particularly a son who is a competitive swimmer. Paul noted that his current “thrill” is being a grandparent to two lovely grandchildren.
He again noted that he will be back in September to talk in detail about progress at the district. But had a couple of comments for us today:
  • His first goal as Superintendent was to stabilize the situation, and he feels like all have made good progress towards that goal. He has observed 150+ class sessions and shared feedback with the teachers.
  • He sees great potential still in how the District can grow.

Andrew H. adjourned the meeting.