Posted by Dora Dye on Jul 25, 2022
Maria Victoria Lozano joined our Club on July 19, 2022. She is not new to Rotary. At age 14, Maria became a member and former president of an Interact club. In 2013, she was a Rotary exchange student in the Philippines, and in 2019, she joined Rotaract at the United Nations as a volunteer.
Maria is from Venezuela and comes from a restaurant family in Rubio. While living in Caracas, she developed her skills as a pastry cook. Five years ago, she joined her sister in San Francisco and found work as a pastry chef. During the pandemic lockdown, she was out of work. To survive, Maria and her sister founded Andina, a pop-up Venezuelan kitchen serving such items as arepas and other Venezuelan foods. Her life and business were the subject of a San Francisco Chronicle story recently.
While I have not yet tasted Andina's arepas, I have eaten arepas (thanks to the availability of international cuisine all over the San Francisco Bay Area) and highly recommend them. I hope that we all have an opportunity to try Maria's cooking and to get to know her.

When asked why she had joined our Club, Maria explained, "I want to be part of a community to meet people and help those in need." She would like to create a partnership among Rotary, restaurants, and small grocery stores in which produce and other food items headed for disposal could be used to make meals for those in need. She would also like our Club to connect with her hometown Rotary club in Venezuela where her mother is now the club president.
Editor's Note: In this column, we invite a new member in our Club to share with us. Please join me in welcoming this new member the next time you see her in person at any of our events.