Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with Kelly

Perennial club favorite Kelly Brothers will join us next Tuesday for our weekly meeting. A popular local radio and TV personality as well as the former partner of a wealth management firm he co-founded, Brothers will regale attendees with stories of his family’s migration from Ireland to the U.S. and offer salient insights into today’s investment markets. As usual, the meeting will be at noon at the Hellenic Hall of the Annunciation Greek Church, 600 Alhambra Boulevard. Reservations are requested. Keep an eye out for the ClubRunner email with the registration link. See you Tuesday!

Vision for Zoo Closer to Reality
Reported by Steve Heath
Featured Speaker
Five years ago, Jason Jacobs told the Rotary Club of Sacramento that big changes were coming to the 90-year-old Sacramento Zoo, but that he couldn’t be specific about them yet. Back then, he was the Zoo’s brand-new Executive Director/CEO.
Five years later, Jacobs has a very clear vision for the future of our Zoo, and he shared it with Rotarians on Tuesday: Less than five years from now, we will be able to walk through the gates of the first new major zoological park to be built in the U.S. in more than three decades.
The new facility, which will cost well over $100 million by the time the last flamingo settles into its new habitat in late 2027 or early 2028, will be in Elk Grove, just west of Highway 99 off Grant Line Road. Will it still be called the Sacramento Zoo? “We don’t know,” says Jacobs. “That hasn’t been determined yet. Elk Grove is in Sacramento County, so in that sense, it will still be Sacramento’s zoo, but we don’t have a name for it yet.” That’s because they have not yet folded the lead naming rights. Jacobs says there is interest, and hints that the price tag could be in the high eight-figure range, which would put it in the same ballpark, so to speak, as Golden 1 Center. “There are some very generous people out there,” said Jacobs, “and they care very much about seeing the vision become a reality.”
With ample parking and, perhaps someday, a light rail station at the front gate, the new zoo will be more than five times the size of the current, landlocked facility in William Land Park. It is expected to attract more than a million visitors annually. In addition to bringing back elephants, hippos, and other large species that have been absent from the current zoo because they could not be properly cared for, the new zoo will include a grizzly bear rescue center, greatly expanded habitats for giraffes and lions, and a 250-foot-long cheetah run that will enable visitors to witness the big cats’ legendary speed. There will also be a large, walk-through avian center where the popular flamingos will have more room to spread their wings, and an expanded health center operated jointly with the world-renowned UC Davis veterinary school. It will have a safari-like vibe, and a restaurant just outside the gates that will offer diners a view of the animals even after the park itself closes for the evening.
Jacobs said there were times when he questioned whether they would be able to find a new location and create the kind of facility the community deserves. “Our board has been working for 25 years to make this a reality,” he said. “In the end, the City of Elk Grove stepped up in a big way.” He said they expect to break ground in 2025 and host their first visitors in late 2027 or early 2028.
Rotarian Spotlight
Elfrena Foord (Arata Brothers Trust) did the honors for this popular meeting segment, spotlighting three club members with birthdays in March:
Beverly Brautigam (Brautigam Financial Services) has been a member of our club for 30 years and served as our President 14 years ago—the first Certified Public Accountant, and second woman, to be our Club’s president. Beverly worked for two of the then-Big 8 accounting firms before starting her own CPA practice. She has a Master of Tax degree from Golden Gate University, where she also taught in that program for several years. She was the first woman President of the Sacramento Estate Planning Council, but her specialty turned out to be the tax consequences of divorce.  She is a co-author of a 400-page textbook on that subject, which she annually updates. For more than 30 years, she has used this textbook when she taught CPAs and family lawyers statewide through the California CPA Education Foundation. In addition, she served as its president in 2005. Beverly sold her tax preparation practice in 2006 to concentrate on her investment advisory practice, as well as her work with the tax consequences of divorce—which includes having served as an expert witness in several California counties. Beverly has been married for 42 years to Hal Bartholomew, also a Past President of this club. Not only do they maintain their marriage while helping others get divorced, but also they live on 10 acres in Elk Grove on which they planted a vineyard 20 years ago. Three years ago, they, and their partner, began using their grapes and started Christopher Cellars winery. Now, Beverly and Hal enjoy the fruit of their labor with their two sons. Fun Fact:  Beverly started baton twirling at the age of 4, taught for several years, and was a majorette through High School.
Dee Johnson (State of California-Retired) is one of our newest members, having joined the club about nine months ago. Dee was born an Army brat in Denver, Colorado, and lived in Japan and Germany before moving to Santa Clara, California, when she was 10. She graduated from UC Berkeley in 1971. Before going to law school, she took a year off to dabble in music. She impulsively enrolled in an actual school for rock and roll music in San Francisco where she had fun singing and writing a few songs. Then she thought, “No career future there,” so she went to law school. In 2015, Dee retired after nine years in private practice and 31 years as a lawyer with the State of California, including many years with the California Department of Real Estate. Her next stint was as an Administrative Law Judge. She traveled up and down the state, holding hearings or mediations with school districts on one side and the families of children with disabilities on the other. She especially enjoyed helping school districts and families settle their often-emotional disputes without a hearing. Dee has an abiding love for animals and has rescued many dogs and cats. She has had a furry companion or two ever since law school. She also loves photography and is headed to Ireland in June for a photography trip. Fun Fact: Dee’s administrative law judge travels involved unexpected adventures. During one snowy mediation up in Burney Falls, alarms rang not just at the school but all over town: the local bank was being robbed and the town was sealed off. Dee had already checked out of the motel, waived her credentials to the CHP, and squeaked out of town through the barricade.
Liz McClatchy (Safety Center-Retired) is a 33-year Rotarian. She was born in Watsonville, California, and moved to Sacramento to attend Sac State for her final 2 years. She majored in mathematics and worked full-time. Liz had had two big careers. The first was at the Bank of California, for 25 years, moving from bookkeeper to Vice President & Regional Manager. The second was in the nonprofit world as President and CEO of the Safety Center for 24 years. Liz made history here in Sacramento as the first woman member of the Sutter Club, and then their first woman board member. She has traveled to 43 countries and loves meeting people from different cultures.  Her late husband, Jedd McClatchy, was talented in being able to engage with the locals, even when it was just on brief stops from a cruise ship. She even visited Ukraine in 1988 back in the Soviet Union days. Fun Fact- Liz won a National Rifle Association competition, with a perfect 100 score while shooting a .22 rifle in a prone position, when she was just 10 years old. But she never took up shooting as a hobby. Another fun fact: When Liz was a senior in high school, her English teacher had every student enter an essay contest by writing on the topic of “How the American Merchant Marines Contribute to the Prosperity of the USA.” That was a daunting task, as Liz knew nothing about the Merchant Marines. However, Liz’s essay won first place. The prize? A three-week trip, with stops at four different Hawaiian Islands, for her and her mother, on a Matson freighter with just six cabins.
Club Announcements
JOHN SWENTOWSKY (Swentowsky Photography) reminded members that volunteers are needed to help at Loaves & Fishes on Thursday, March 30th. He will be sending out a sign-up reminder on Wednesday.
BOB ROSENBERG (Inve$tnet, Inc.) Announced that the club’s grant proposal for the $800,000 Honduras WASH project had been approved and that the fundraising has almost been completed for the water, sanitation, and hygiene project. He congratulated fellow International Services Committee member MAGGIE HOPKINS for her work writing the grant proposal and noted that we have achieved something unique in the Rotary world by obtaining financial participation from every club in our district. This makes ours the only SuperWASH district in all of Rotary.
MAGGIE HOPKINS (Capital Premier Lending and Premier Realty) said that the deadline is Wednesday for the submission of nominations for the annual Jean Runyon Award. Nominations must be submitted through the online form, which can be found at https://rotarysacramento.com/get-involved/jean-runyon-community-service-award/.
Past President JOHN FRISCH (Newmark Commercial Real Estate) is looking for a few good (young) men to help with Sons’ Day on April 4th. Sons and grandsons, ages six through 20, are needed to help with the program. If you can help, contact John at John.Frisch@nmrk.com, or Executive Director STEVE HEATH at steve@rotarysacramento.com.
Visiting Rotarian Richard Goore from the Arden-Arcade Club invited members to attend his club’s annual Poker Tournament, benefitting the Firefighters’ Burn Institute, on March 25th at the new Niello BMW showroom. Interested members can find more information by clicking here.
DAVID BRANDENBURGER (Newmark Commercial Real Estate), said there is still room for more contestants in our annual high school speech contest, which will be held March 20th at Sacramento Children’s Home. Contact David at David.Brandenburger@nmrk.com for more information.

Past President SUSAN SHERIDAN (Law-Retired) announced that posters, rack cards, and other printed promotional materials for next September’s 9th annual Sacramento Century bicycle challenge have been received and will be distributed to cycling clubs and bike shops all over the state shortly. She asked for volunteers to remain after the meeting to help bundle rack cards for shipping.

They’re Gems for Giving
President LINDA GEERY (California Lawyers Association) recognized BOBBIE HALES (Gilbert CPAs) for being named to the Business Journal’s list of most-admired CEOS. Bobbie added to the celebration of her recognition with a $200 contribution toward her next Eddie Mulligan.
President-Elect TODD KOOLAKIAN (Sacramento Children’s Home) celebrated the birth of his first niece, Violet, on February 24rd, with a $250 contribution toward his next Paul Harris.
JUDY KJELSTROM (UC Davis-Retired) contributed $100 toward her next Eddie Mulligan to celebrate her milestone achievement as a $50,000 fundraiser for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer fund.
Past President SUSAN said she was so delighted to see LAURA HEINTZ (Stanford Sierra Youth & Families) in attendance that she wanted to contribute $100 to Laura’s next Paul Harris and $100 to Laura’s next Eddie Mulligan.
PAUL KEEFER (Pacific Charter Institute) added $100 toward his next Paul Harris because it will be baseball season again shortly, adding, “Go Giants!.”
Meeting Sponsor
TIM MATTHEIS (WMB Architects) told the audience that the firm he works for is celebrating its 50th year of working on projects with public and private clients all over the state and showed photos of some of their work. His clients have included several club members’ organizations: Spare Time Sports Clubs (LARRY GILZEAN), Fairytale Town (Past-President KEVIN SMITH-FAGAN), and Pacific Charter Institute (PAUL KEEFER).
Thought for the Day
“Most of us don’t play enough,” said JUSTINO SANTA (eFundraisingConnections), who provided the thought for the day. “Play,” he said, “including going to places like the zoo, is important for both physical and mental health.”
ROBYN DELONG (Coldwell Banker) stood in for KATHE NATHAN (Banking-Retired) as Sergeant-at-Arms. Robyn introduced the following guests:
Bret Bartholomew, son of Past-Presidents HAL BARTHOLOMEW and BEVERLY BRAUTIGAM.
Visiting Rotarians Mr. and Mrs. John Cutter, Rotary Club of Manila (Philippines), who exchanged banners with President Linda.
Visiting Rotarian Richard Goore, Arden-Arcade Rotary.
Elba White, guest of TED WHITE (Sacramento Delta Property Management).
Former member Steven Walker, guest of ROBYN.
Prospective member Shane Heskett, guest of PAUL KEEFER.
Andrea Haverland, Sacramento Zoo, accompanying guest speaker Jason Jacobs.
Meeting Volunteers
Greeters included LIZ MCCLATCHY, THERESA WHEELER (Prevail Public Affairs), DICK NOONAN (California State Railroad Museum Foundation) and Past-President KEN NOAK, JR. (Newmark Commercial Real Estate).
NANCY and Past-President FRED TEICHERT hosted the pre-meeting wine reception.
JOHN SWENTOWSKY was the meeting photographer, STEVE SHIFFLETT (California State Parks-Retired) offered the Smile for the Day, and Past-President KEVIN SMITH-FAGAN (Fairytale Town) was Chair of the Day, introducing guest speaker Jason Jacobs.
Photo Gallery
(Courtesy of JOHN SWENTOWSKY, Swentowsky Photography)