Posted by Stacey Poole on Nov 08, 2023
Immediate Past President Christopher Wiseman (Nonprofit Management | Glaucoma Research Foundation) called today's meeting to order at 12:15 PM and welcomed those online and those attending in person at the Anzu Restaurant in the Hotel Nikko. President Sunny Singh (Financial Services: Advising | PK Wealth Management) was feeling under the weather but very appreciative of the well wishes and good thoughts sent to him.
Visiting Rotarians and Guests
Today's Visiting Rotarian was Alexander Kuch who is a member of a Rotary club in Germany. He currently resides in New Zealand and attends his Rotary meetings at midnight. Today's guests from Catholic Charities were Everett Highbaugh, Morgan McCarthy, Tony Alioto, and Elizabeth Driskill. Also in attendance was Malik Seneferu.
Grant Presentation
Dan Joraanstad (Financial Services: Advising | Retired) on behalf of the San Francisco Rotary Foundation presented a $9,333 check to Catholic Charities to support the work of St. Joseph's Family House. Everett Highbaugh from Catholic Charities gave a presentation on the services provided by St. Joseph's Family House, which include 90- to 180-day housing for families, debt counseling, meals, vocational services, and a social worker with a goal of helping the family to obtain sustainable housing.
Elizabeth Driskill, Bridget Mahoney, Darlene Wilson, Christopher Wiseman, and Dan Joraanstad
Remembering PRIP Rick King
Today's audience observed a moment of silence to remember Past Rotary International President Rick King. Many members of our Club had the honor of knowing Rick, who had infectious energy and a passionate love for Rotary. See more information here.
Heidi KühnHonoring Heidi Kühn
Today's audience honored Heidi Kühn for winning the 2023 World Food Prize Laureate. See full story here. Heidi was present at today's meeting and provided examples of how the work of Roots of Peace is training women in Afghanistan to survive and thrive.
Club Events for Rotarians
Check the Club's calendar for upcoming Committee meetings and service projects. Past President Christopher urged members to register for the Holiday Party and Annual Meeting before December 1, 2023. On December 1, the price for individual tickets will go up. We also need at least 45 Club members to attend in order to have a quorum for our Annual Meeting. Register for the Holiday Party and Annual Meeting here.
Share Your Good News ($20 for Twenty Seconds)
Here are today's donors:
  • President-Elect Bob Hermann (Information Technology: Administration | Retired UCSF) donated to acknowledge the nominees for open Board positions and to express his excitement for the potential incoming leadership of our Club.
  • Scott Plakun (Management Consulting | The Plakun Group) donated in honor of his recent discovery that a friend he has known for 20 years had attended his college graduation in 1974.
  • Sacha Shashi (Information Technology: Consulting | Nimbus Systems) donated to share and give an update on the international water project that he has been working on.
  • Ozan Yasavur (Engineering: Mechanical | Bioforcetech Corporation) donated to celebrate the 100th birthday of the Turkish Republic on October 29, 2023.
Guest Speaker
Larry Booth (Engineering: Mechanical | Frank M. Booth, Inc.) introduced today's speaker - Ravinder Sehgal (Education: University | San Francisco State University). Ravinder is a professor of biology and a member of our Club. His mother, who is a member of a Rotary club in Stockholm, Sweden, had introduced him to Rotary.
Ravinder SehgalProfessor Sehgal discussed his work studying deforestation and emerging avian diseases in Congo. Several times a year, he travels to Cameroon and the Democratic Republic of the Congo where he meets with his students in remote areas of the rainforest. While there, they capture 50-60 birds a day in order to test their blood in an effort to determine how deforestation is affecting the birds. He described the conditions that he and his students endured in order to study the birds: they are escorted by armed eco-guards, have no electricity or Internet, and must often bribe their guides to obtain access to roads. 
The deforestation is a result of the rainforest being cut down in order to make room for palm trees to create palm oil, an ingredient in many foods and cosmetics. Professor Sehgal and his students found that deforestation leads to increased bird disease as the number of mosquitos drastically increases in areas where deforestation occurs, and the female mosquitos spread disease. Professor Sehgal closed by saying that he is proud to have trained the next generation of biologists to continue his work when he can no longer do it. He reminded Club members that we can help his cause by not purchasing items made with palm oil, by spending more time outdoors, and by listening to the birds.
Past President Christopher thanked Professor Sehgal and announced that 100 children would be inoculated against polio in his name.
The meeting concluded at 1:30 PM.
Meeting Volunteers
Past President Christopher thanked today's meeting volunteers: Stacey Poole (Law: Family | Lerner Poole & Stewart, LLP) for serving as scribe; Jim Patrick (Retail: Office Supplies | Patrick & Co.) for serving as photographer; Carrie Schucker (Counseling | Retired) for managing the microphone; Kirt Burdick of the Academy of Art University for managing the audio-visual equipment during our in-person meeting; Maureen O'Shea (Governmental Relations | Retired), Robert Beadle (Real Estate: Sales | Coldwell Banker), and Frank Yoke (Development | Frank Yoke Consulting) for serving as greeters; and Ozan Yasavur and Ann Daugherty (Financial Services: Private Trading | IBN Financial Services) for doing check-in at the Hotel Nikko.