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Club History - 2011-2012
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Below is the year of President Elizabeth McCoury, 2011-2012.  If you would like to go in chronological order, start at the bottom and scroll your way up.

 

On the evening of June 22, Frank Haislip was sworn in as our new president by Cap Neilson, who the very next day was destined to become the District Governor.

The venue for our Installation of Officers celebration was the Hampton History Museum.

 

During the June 20th meeting Ned Spencer was designated our Rotarian of the Year because of all his hard work and unassuming service, especially as Chair of the Community Service Committee.

 

The June 6th program was Eboni Davis, recently returned from South Korea as a member of a Rotary Group Study Exchange (GSE) team.  We learned about Korea and what it is like to spend a month in the midst of an entirely different culture.

 

Immediately before the June 6th club meeting, this year's and next year's boards of directors held a joint meeting to smooth the transition.

 

On June 2nd, a nice spring day, several Peninsula Club Rotarians and at least as many of the Rotarians' family members, had a work day at "In Coretta's Care," a preschool in Newport News.  The work day was in collaboration with Preschool Partners and Smart Beginnings, two organizations that work to raise the standards of targeted area preschools.  Our project here was the playground.  Starting with a muddy mess, we added several tons of gravel, reconstructed and improved a retaining wall for the gravel, made repairs to both a wooden fence and a chain link fence, trimmed trees and vines, and gave them (and assembled) a picnic table.

 

April 26 was Sponsor's Day at An Achievable Dream Academy, where sponsors of An Achievable Dream can meet AAD students.  Here Dr. John Frantz and Jim Pierce, of the Peninsula Rotary Club, are seen with Zakyah Daniels and Jada Perry, respectively.  Zakyah is, as luck would have it, interested in becoming a doctor.  The Peninsula Club has been working with An Achievable Dream, especially at the Tennis Ball, for many years.

 

In Costa Rica our Rotary Foundation Matching Grant for installing filtration stations for the incoming water at ten schools is drawing to a close.  Pictured here is the newly-installed station at the El Llano school with four members of the Escazu Rotary Club.

 

On April 25th our newest member, Lisa Crump, was officially inducted into the club.  At left is President Elizabeth, Lisa, sponsor Paul Szabo, and District Governor Elect Cap Neilson.  On the right, Cap is congratulating her.

 

At our annual Career Day on April 18th, the Rotarians were almost outnumbered by the students from Peninsula Catholic High School.  Led by veteran emcee Greg Richardson, the Rotarians answered career-oriented questions from the youngsters.

 

On April 11th, instead of our normal meeting, we had a more relaxed "after hours" get-together at 5 PM at the Park Lane Tavern at Peninsula Town Center.  There was enjoyment and comradery all around.  In the inset are Cap and Linda Neilson, who were that day celebrating their 49th wedding anniversary.

 

On April 4th the club was visited by a bit of living history.  Chief Master Sergeant (Retired) Grant Williams was one of the original famed Tuskegee Airmen.  He told us about the early days of the World War II organization that helped revolutionize our thinking about race.  His red clothing was inspired by the fact that the tails of the squadrons' airplanes were painted red.

 

On March 28th the speaker was another Martin Gracey Award winner, Bobby Freeman.  He spoke about the Newport News Public Art Foundation, which he originated.

 

On March 21st Paul Trible, former senator, present CNU president, and the first recipient of the club's Martin Gracey Award for Excellence, paid us another visit and discussed CNU and the state of education in America and in Hampton Roads.

 

On March 19th the CNU Rotaract Club, co-sponsored by the Peninsula Rotary Club, held its fifth annual Richard Summerville Leadership Seminar.  The top photo shows Dr. Lisa Spiller, an expert on marketing, giving an animated and energetic keynote speech.  Below that on the left, Pat Resto, Peninsula Club member, leads one of the breakout sessions.  On the right Dr. Spiller warmly honors Dick Summerville, Peninsula Club member and the man for whom the seminar series was named.

 

On March 14th Christina Anderson, a senior at Christopher Newport University and current president of the CNU Rotaract Club (Co-sponsored by the Peninsula Rotary Club) told us about her club's activities, accomplishments, and goals.

 

The Williamsburg Winery was the venue for this year's Charter Night celebration on February 17th.  Our annual Charter Night commemorates the founding of the Peninsula Rotary Club in 1978.

During Charter Night Jim Pierce presided over a brief ceremony welcoming two new Paul Harris Fellows and raising the PHF status of fifteen others.

Jim Pierce's house is around the corner from the Winery, so before the Charter Night festivities he invited everyone in for a social hour.

 

We were visited February 8th by this year's recipient of our CNU scholarship, Andrew Garmon--a physics major from Northern Virginia.  At left he is shown with Past President John Frantz, who is our principal contact with the CNU scholarship administrators.

 

On February 8th, Dawn Lee was inducted into the club as a new member.  At right, Diane Hagemann puts on her Rotary pin.  Dawn is the business manager at an attorney's firm.

 

On December 21st the Club did its yearly day of bell-ringing for the Salvation Army at two locations.  On the left is Rob Dick and Danny Carroll at Patrick Henry Mall.  On the right, Harvey Weinstein and Gail Pearce at Peninsula Town Center have a moment of fun as Tom Morris prepares to take his turn for the next hour.

 

On December 14th, long-time Rotarian Abe Firestone brought his wife, Ernestine, to lunch with him.  It was their 65th wedding anniversary!  At left is Abe and Ernestine with the cake the club presented them.  On the right, President Elizabeth gives a surprised Ernestine an armload of roses.

 

During the Christmas season, Rotarian Kim Feinauer of the Salvation Army has been giving us traditional Christmas music as we eat our lunch.  He has been bringing in--and playing--an astonishing variety of different musical instruments, both woodwind and brass.

 

On December 3rd, for the second year in a row, our Christmas party was held at the home of David and Cathy Miller.  For candid photographs see the Christmas party item in the Photo Albums.

 

An Achievable Dream, in partnership with the Rotary Club of the Virginia Peninsula, held its 19th annual Tennis Ball on November 12th.  Above is the dining room, and below is the silent auction room.  For more photos go to the Photo Album.

 

 

  

Our $20,000 project in Costa Rica, installing water purifying filters at ten schools, has now started.  On the left we see installation at one school underway, and on the right the finished assembly.

 

At the November 2nd meeting the president, Chris Ohlhaver, and the rest of the officers of the Peninsula Catholic High School Interact Club were sworn in.

 

The Peninsula Rotary Club was much in evidence at the 2011 Rotary District 7600 Conference in Short Pump, just northwest of Richmond.  Above, Cap Neilson speaks from experience of what can and can't be done when major disaster strikes.  Below is the Hall of Friendship, where our club had a display.  Diane Hagemann was busy as co-chair of the conference.  Ray Spencer, Danny Carroll, Cap Nielson, and Jim Pierce gave a break-out seminar on the mechanics of Matching Grants and grants funding.  Jim and Cap were prominent throughout the conference in their positions as past and future District Governors.

 

 

                        

On October 5th Steve Adams, Chair of the Vocational Service Committee, presented this year's Martin Gracey Award for Extraordinary Service to James O. Shaw, Jr, MD, the founder of the Lackey Free Clinic.  The Martin Gracey Award is given to persons who not only have high ethical standards, but who have established something that will be of lasting value to the community.

 

On a Thursday night, September 29th, before a packed house at the Cooper Elementary Magnet School, Immediate Past President John Frantz presented school principal Chevese Thomas with a donation of $12,000 for the Star Achievers Academy.  Star Achievers Academy is a three-way public-private partnership among the Peninsula Metropolitan YMCA, the Peninsula Rotary Club, and Cooper Elementary Magnet School for Technology.  The money donated will go towards programs that improve the reading skills of the students.

 

On September 24th we (and District 7600) welcomed the GSE team from South Korea with a reception at the home of Jim and Suki Pierce.

 

On August 24th we had our debut meeting at its new location--in a meeting room at the Hampton Sentara CarePlex Hospital.

 

The August 10th meeting was held at the Food Bank of the Virginia Peninsula, at its brand new home.  We heard about the Food Bank and saw its offices and warehouse facilities.

 

On a tolerably warm July Saturday the club added the last component of the picnic shelter at the Newport News Boundless Playground, its floor of concrete paver stones.  For more information and photos CLICK HERE.

 

 

At the July 6th meeting we were visited by the new District 7600 Governor Jim Bynum.

This photo shows the new President Elizabeth with the equally new District Governor Jim.

 

The installation of officers was held June 26th at John Frantz's home.

....and a fine time was had by all.

Our new President Elizabeth McCoury is sworn in by the equally new District Governor Jim Bynum.