Rotary meeting: August 24, 2021
PRESIDENT BOB MILLER (Business Services Manager at First US Community Credit Union) called us to order by thanking Rotarians who volunteered at Tuesday’s meeting. Special thanks went out to the following; ALISON CAGLEY (Executive Director at Friends of Sacramento Arts), JAYDEEP BALAKRISHNAN (Associate Dean of California State University, Sacramento), and TODD ANDREWS (President at Andrews Construction, Inc) who’s roles as greeters did not fall short of making us feel welcomed; JOHN SWENTOWSY (Owner at Swentowsky Photography) who captured the moments we wouldn’t want to forget as our evening’s photographer; TODD KOOLAKIAN (Director of Philanthropy at The Sacramento Children’s Home) who sponsored our wine reception so that each and every one of us could keep our glasses full; and JOHN GORALKA (President of The Goralka Law Firm) assuring the days remembrance as Pulse Reporter.
SARAH HODGE (Director of Resource Development / NeighborWorks Sacramento) had the honor of delivering our thought for the day. She read an inspirational poem from the book All Along You Were Blooming- Thoughts for Boundless Living, a collection of poetry by Morgan Harper Nichols.
“Let us leave room for bold adventure and wake up at dawn in search of wonder. Let us find joy in the grit of the wonderlands and look for Light in everything. For all along, we were made for this: to step fully into unknowns, to know deep within the night, within the soul, we were not meant to go alone. In every single moonlit tree, we were meant to see those leaves, and we were meant to see the beauty in the swaying arms of branches. So let us find rest in these woods so new to us, knowing this is where we will learn to grow to love to trust.”
The Committee Spotlight shone on none other than PAST PRESIDENT PETER DANNENFELSER (Chairman of the Membership Committee). PETER started off describing the scope of Rotary Club by reminding us of its 34,000 clubs around the world, with at least 1 in almost every country. He represented that the Membership Committee’s responsibility is to reach out to members they haven’t heard from in a while to encourage engagement. In addition, Rotary member’s responsibility is to wear their pin, and when people ask what their pin means, take the opportunity to inform them of Rotary’s commitments and participation in promoting the welfare of the community.
Most of our growth is cultivated by members who extend invitations to others, so don’t forget to invite a friend!
  • PAST PRESIDENT THOM GILBERT (Retired, Gilbert Associates, Inc.) sponsored Tuesday’s meeting and donated his time to the California State Railroad Museum Foundation (CSRMF). THOM  is the chairman of the CSRMF and served on the board for over 8 years. CSRMF provides funding for ongoing support of numerous programs at the California State Railroad Museum in Old Sacramento and Railtown 1897 State Historic Park in Jamestown. Got to the CSRMF website to sign up to become a member. A membership gives you exclusive perks such as getting early presale tickets for their most popular train ride event, The Polar Express and the silver sleigh bell. This event sells out every year and is a train ride in Sacramento that consists of seven separate cars pulled by vintage locomotives from the California State Railroad Museum’s collection. And lets not forget the ever so popular Spookamotive that will roll again for Halloween!
  • RUTH TESAR (CEO of Northern California PET Imaging Center) informed us of Sac Century’s efforts to spread word about the upcoming Sac Century Challenge that takes place on October 2, 2021. Last weekend, volunteers spent time going up and down the bike trail handing out information. From 8:00AM-12:00PM, this Saturday, August 28th they will be doing it once again! If you’d like more information to join, just reach out to RUTH over email by CLICKING HERE
  • KATHY HERRDFELDT (Owner/President of Home Care Assistance) announced that application are now being accepted for the Jean Runyon Award. This award profiles a Rotarian who embodies the qualities and character of one of the first female Rotarians to join our club. This aware considers attributes such as service to the community, opportunity creating, generosity, and leadership. You can view submission guidelines as well as submit nominations at this link.
  • On October 12th from 10:00 AM- 3:30 PM there will be a blood drive taking place at the Greek Orthodox Church. We need your blood! This donating event is private and not live on the Vitalant website, but Rotary members can sign up thorough this link: Rotary Blood Drive . Feel free to use this link: Rotary Members Link to Donating for other times and locations you can give before or after October 12 as well! If you are able to volunteer to help please contact SHARNA and send an email with the times you can volunteer. Come on out, all the cool kids are doing it!
  • There will be a Rotarian Barbeque on September 5th at 3:30 PM hosted by PAST PRESIDENT BEVERLY BRAUTIGAM and PAST PRESIDENT HAL BARTHOLOMEW. Don’t forget your swimsuit because there will be a pool on site!
  • Would you like to have access to information about Rotary Club with a press of a button? ClubRunner is an app available for download that will give you access to club related information as well as the ability to contact other Rotary members. It’s available on both Android and Apple Devices.
JOHN MCINTYRE (Chief Philanthropy Officer at Mercy Foundation) introduced our speaker, DR. OLIVIA KASIRYE. He mentioned that when people meet DR. KASIRYE, the first thing they wonder is “what’s up with that Texas accent?” Be assured this is a common misconception and easy mistake to make. However, in fact, DR. KASIRYE (one might argue wisely) bypassed Texas entirely and both she and her lilting accent hail from her native Uganda.
DR. OLIVIA KASIRYE, M.D. is the El Dorado County Public Health Officer and the Sacramento County Public Health Officer. She has over 20 years of experience including her work as the Medical Director of the Sacramento County Child Health and Disability Prevention program and the Maternal, Child and Adolescent Health program and as the Communicable Disease Controller. KASIRYE received a Medical Degree from the Makerere University Medical School in Kampala, Uganda. She also has a Master of Science degree in Epidemiology from the University of California, Davis. She is Board Certified in Public Health and General Preventative Medicine and has been employed by El Dorado County Department of Health and Human Services as the Public Health Officer since August 2009.
According to DR. KASIRYE an aspect of the Public Health Department is the that they coordinate with the state, CHP, and CDC who provided them news about things going on nationally and internationally. KASIRYE then took us on a brief timeline of events for Sacramento County regarding the COVID 19 pandemic. It all began when an article from the CDC was released stating that they had noticed an outbreak in Wuhan, China, which was Sacramento County Pubic Health’s first indication of COVID-19. After that, they started monitoring people that were coming into the United States that were reported to them by the CDC. Initially anyone who contracted COVID either had a history of travel or a history of contact with someone who had COVID. A pivotal point of the pandemic’s presence in US was when there was a contraction that didn’t have any such history. That meant we had COVID in our community, but we just didn’t know it… The timeline for the progression of COVID within Sacramento County was as follows:
Timeline of Events- Sacramento:
  • February 19th– First case in Sacramento diagnosed
  • February 26th– First case of community transmission diagnosed at UCD
  • March 4th– Placer County announces first death
  • March 5th– Sacramento County declares public health emergency
  • March 9th– exposure in school, closure
  • March 10th– Sacramento County announces first death
  • March 19th– Sacramento County issues first stay at home Public Health Officer Order.
As most already know, a recent surge has emerged. DR. KASIRYE pointed out that the reason a stay-at-home order was not issued this time`  was because we now have a vaccination.
Sacramento Vaccinations by Zip Code:
  • Folsom
    • Full vaccinations- 45,500
    • Population fully vaccinated- 55%
  • Galt
    • Full vaccinations- 13,474
    • Population fully vaccinated- 52%
  • Isleton
    • Full vaccinations- 945
    • Population fully vaccinated- Undetermined
  • Sacramento
    • Full vaccinations- 415,562
    • Population fully vaccinated- 81%
  • Unincorporated Area
    • Full vaccinations- 136,574
    • Population fully vaccinated- 23%
The Public health department created many organizations that are working diligently to administer vaccines and educate the public on other health safety measures that combat the spread of COVID. DR. KASIRYE expresses how the Public Health Department is hopeful during this surge because infections rates have already begun to plateau. They believe it is because we are better equipped to respond to outbreaks since so many organizations were created to defend against it. With continued efforts there is a positive outlook on our ability to recover from the COVID-19 Pandemic.
When reporter JOHN GORALKA asked DR. KASIRYE if there is any additional information she wished to include, her answer was simply “GET VACCINATED.”
If you didn’t make it to the August 24th meeting, don’t fret! You can watch a recording of it HERE. Not to mention, there’s still a chance to make it to the next one!
On August 31, 2021, from 12:10 PM – 1:30 PM, we will be meeting at The Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church. Next Tuesday’s guest speaker will be the Mayor of Sacramento, Darrel Steinberg. Darrell Steinberg is one of Sacramento’s most accomplished public servants, serving the Sacramento community for more than 20 years.
Upcoming Rotary Club Meetings at a Glance:
  • 8/31 – The Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church 12:10 – 1:30 PM
Speaker: Mayor Steinberg – Sacramento
  • 9/7 – The Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church 12:10 – 1:30 PM
Speaker: DARK
  • 9/14 – The Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church 12:10 – 1:30 PM
Speaker: John Frisch (moderator) + Panel – Commercial Real Estate