President Todd Koolakian called the Rotary Club of Sacramento to order for January 23, 2024.
Steve Huffman opened the proceedings with a Thought of the Day noting the civic contributions of women from Sacramento’s earliest days. Those who arrived with the Gold Rush were almost all young men. However, especially with the arrival of Sisters of Mercy in 1857, women impacted our community through female-owned charitable and educational enterprises.
Our next networking night is scheduled for February 1 from 5:30-7:30pm at Bailarin Cellars on K St. Please reserve your spot ASAP!
Nominations are open for the Jean Runyon Community Service Award! Please nominate a Rotarian that has shown exceptional dedication to empowering women. Visit the link to learn more and name your nominee.
Our club’s Community Grants Program is looking for a few more committee members to share the work and joy in granting awards to local nonprofits doing meaningful work. Contact Christie Holderegger for more information.
Spread the word to high school students to compete in the annual Rotary Youth Speech Contest on February 29th at 4:30 p.m. Also, if you are interested in being a judge, contact Sharna Braucks for more information.
Let’s Go Skiing!
The following Rotarians tuned up their skis and hit the slopes with many generous gifts: Nancy Smith-Fagan, Hon. Kim Mueller, PP Walter Dahl, Elke Von Schlosser, PP Brian Van Camp, Maggie Hopkins, President Todd, and Dr. Barbara Arnold. These Rotarians celebrated new grandbabies, wedding engagements, a successful year real estate and memorial gifts of past family members/friends/Rotarians.
Jennifer Basye Sander, daughter of late club member George Basye, presented a bequest to our Rotary club from his estate.
The Main Event: The Search for Anna Judah
Dick Noonan introduced featured speaker Christine Pifer-Foote, a docent at California State Railroad Museum and expert on the life and work of Anna Judah (1828-1895). Christine shared her three years of research pursuing Anna’s story supporting her husband Theodore “Ted” Judah’s career in the railroad industry. Anna joined Ted in advocating for the building of the Transcontinental Railroad, and Anna documented the journey through her art. Their advocacy spearheaded the approval of the Pacific Railway Act of 1862 that was signed by President Lincoln. Though Ted Judah did not live long enough to see the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad, Anna did – though due contentious relations with the “Big 4” investors in the Central Pacific Railroad, she was not invited to the Golden Spike Ceremony on May 10, 1869 that signaled the realization of Ted’s dream.
A talented artist, Anna’s paintings and pressed flowers have taken on historical importance and have been displayed widely, including at the U.S. Capitol. Rotarians can view Anna’s work right now at a special exhibit at the California State Railroad Museum in Old Sacramento.
Greeters were Harold Bellamy, Joel Hockman and Steve Johanson. Pulse duties were handled by Christie Holderegger, and photography by John Swentowsky. The wine reception was sponsored by Ted White and Moira Doherty.
Next week’s meeting will feature Natalie Collins, president of California Association of Wine Growers.