Posted on Feb 14, 2018

Pledge of Allegiance and Innvocation

President Mike, bake from celebrating his birthday in Los Angeles, asked Jim Shypertt to lead us in
the Pledge of Allegiance.
Cheri Carr gave a very inspirational Valentine Day invocation reminding us to take nothing in life for granted and to value the friends and friendships we have. She charged each us to go home and express our love to that special someone, and today is the perfect day for it....Happy Valentine's Day.

Guests and Visiting Rotarians

Don Shoecraft, past-president and member of San Mateo, was introduced.
Doug Winnett brought his lovely wife to lunch.


We were reminded of our Spring Fundraiser. So save the date, Sunday, May 20th for our second annual Bistro event at the Doubletree in Burlingame. This event is how we fund our community giving and the Japanese exchange program. We hope to attract attendees from outside the club. More to come.
Jennifer Pence brought our newest member to the podium.  As we welcomed her, Sarah Haas told us a little bit about her background. Membership Chair Cheri Carr explained a bit about new member requirements to be able to exchange the round badge for the official “square” badge.
Jerry Kuehn, current program committee chair, has passed the torch to new co-chairs Emily Matthews and Nancy Bush.  Program committee meetings will continue on Tuesdays at 7:30 at the offices of Carr McClellan.


In the absence of Nancy Bush, Mary Murphy introduced our speaker Don Shoecraft.  Don is a journalist and writer who has followed his craft for more than 40 years.  He has retired and un-retired several times.  He is the author of four commissioned histories.  He shared one of those with the club.  Wings of the Phoenix, a History of San Francisco International Airport.   Our airport began its existence on May 7, 1927 when the City and County of San Francisco leased 150 acres in Millbrae and began operations as Mills Field.  This property had been purchased by Darius Ogden Mills in 1862.  But the concept for an airport began well before 1927.  After the 1906 earthquake most of the country believed that San Francisco ceased to exist.  The idea of an airport was an effort to change this perception. The “Big Four”, Stanford, Huntington, Hopkins and Crocker helped spur and support this effort.  A successful airport would also help San Francisco attract the 1915 Exposition whose location was then up for bid.  Don shared photos and stories of early aviation in California.  One of the first Aviation Meets was held at Dominguez Hills in Los Angeles (future site of LAX). 
A delegation of the San Francisco Merchants Exchange, lead by DeYoung and Hearst, attended to see if it was a commercial success and could be duplicated in San Francisco, showing that San Francisco was indeed the Gateway to the Orient.  With the financial success of the Dominguez Hills Meet, one was hastily built. The Tanforan Air Show drew 100,000 attendees.  They hosted a second air show in 2011.  With that success President Taft awarded the 1915 Exposition to San Francisco.
With Don’s time growing short he quickly showed photographs of the first runways and small out buildings.  The airport has been expanding rapidly since the 30’s with the advances and increases in air travel.  One of the most interesting slides was an overlay of the original airfield on top of SFO as it appears today.  An amazing history.  Thank you, Don.