Burlingame Rotary Club
Founded in 1925

High Gear Bulletin


Zoom Meeting - Wednesday, July 14, 2021

High Gear Editor: Marilyn Orr

As his first duty of his Rotary year President Joe La Mariana called the meeting to order after some Zoom issues were finally resolved.
Pledge of Allegiance:
Joe then asked our speaker, the Honorable Jerry Hill, to lead the group in the pledge.
Chris Ramirez delivered some thoughts on Leadership.
Welcome to a new year and a new(ish) president. This week, I thought it would be great to talk about leadership. As we continue to navigate these uncertain times, the thought of leadership is important and one that cannot be dismissed. Leadership is not about seniority or the position in which one holds in an organizational hierarchy. Leadership has nothing to do with titles or personal attributes. Leadership is not the management of things. Leadership is about having followers, inspiring, and having the ability and capacity to translate vision into reality. Like Bill Gates once said, “As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.”
As we enter the new year, I leave you with this thought, how may we as a Club, Fellowship, and even individual leaders in our communities, inspire and translate vision into reality for our community and for our Club. Ask yourself, what are you doing to be better and give back to the community that has given you everything in which you see. How can you inspire others to do the same as your influence is what makes each of us leaders?
Joining us for our Zoom meeting were Marie Chuang, Hillsborough City Council, Andra Lorenz, City of Foster City, Mark Hershman, Peninsula Clean Energy and former Chief of Staff to Senator Jerry Hill, and Hilary Gans, RethinkWaste. Welcome to all.
President Joe recognized and thanked board members who have termed out. He gave a shout out to Past President Chèri Carr, Mike Heffernan, Frances Boscacci, Lisa Goldman, Sheryl Young and Mike Horwitz. He also commented on the fantastic year past-president Emily Matthews just completed.
Some upcoming events and dates were noted. The first Board of Directors meeting will be held on Wednesday, July 28th. On August 11th this year’s District Governor Danielle Lallement will lead our program. An all-important date is September 1 when we plan to return to in-person meetings. Our location is yet to be confirmed but stand by!! And, last but not least is our 10th Annual Golf Tournament to be held on October 11th.
President Joe then called attention to the new Rotary International President, Shekhar Mehta and his International theme for the 2021-2022 Rotary Year, ‘Serve to Change Lives’. District 5150 has adopted the theme and focus this year of ‘Protecting the Environment’.
Newscast +
Fritz Brauner began by comparing our undecided lunch location to the Mystery Night that was an event we would hold annually in the distant past. Fritz then apologized to Phil Siegle for misstating his birthplace as Newark, NJ rather than Trenton, NJ, a faux pas that one should not make.
After informing us of the irony of National Mac N Cheese Day paired with National Tape Measure Day, Fritz noted that it was also Bastille Day which is celebrated in France. He used that as a segue to suggest that we had another important day to celebrate. It was a week belated, but we acknowledged President Joe’s birthday with a few cupcakes and candles and a rather off-key rendition of “Happy Birthday”.
The Tables are Turned:
The interviewee becomes the interviewer. After being surprised by Mark Lucchesi at a prior meeting, Alex Buljan used the same tactic and randomly chose a Rotarian to interview. He selected John Delaney as his “victim” for his rapid-fire interrogation. We learned quite a bit about John. He divulged that he was born in Nutley, NJ and moved to California when he was in high school. John attended and graduated from Saint Mary’s College. When asked why he selected banking as a career, John noted that he worked his way through college as a bank teller. He has now been in the industry for 38 years. Moving on to favorites John admitted that Friday is his favorite day of the week, Christmas is his favorite holiday, favorite junk food can be found at McDonald’s and his favorite childhood TV shows were Love Boar and Fantasy Island. When asked if he had a nickname growing up John admitted to being called Chopper! Who would have guessed!
President Joe introduced our speaker, Senator Jerry Hill. He quickly reviewed Jerry’s 35+ years of public service from leading a homeowners’ association to city councilman in San Mateo followed by San Mateo County Board of Supervisors. It was then on to State office culminating as a state senator for California.
Jerry reflected on his past years of service noting his belief in the value of community. He quoted Tip O’Neill who said, “All politics are local”.  Jerry noted that his motivation usually was a result of getting mad at things he saw, finding something that just wasn’t right. Early on he realized there was no year-round homeless shelter in San Mateo County. He was able to establish a location in SSF. There were children in the County who had no health insurance. The supervisors were able to provide a solution.
Jerry commented on the challenge to raise the millions of dollars it takes to run for State-wide office. Those funds usually come from special interest groups who all want something. And that is a problem with our politics today. Jerry shared a quote from Former Assemblyman Jesse Unruh back in the 1960s who said, “Money is the mother’s milk of politics” and “If you can’t take their money, drink their booze, eat their food, screw their women and vote against them, you don’t belong here.” However, things have changed in that if you don’t reward the special interest donors you may not get re-elected. So often politics trumps policy. When he got to the Assembly, he recognized the local aspect of the job as each member voted based on the constituency they represented.
Jerry made a decision to concentrate his efforts on issues that would make life better for Californians. One began with the PG&E explosion in San Bruno. It was discovered that it was not an accident but the result of corruption in the regulating agency as well as within PG&E. He advocated for changes so this disaster would not happen again. Other legislation that Jerry worked to effect change involved a minimum age for marriage, which did not exist in California, to protect young girls. There is now liability for the driver and the companies that run party buses where alcohol is consumed thanks to Jerry’s  efforts. If a physician has any disciplinary actions pending and he is still practicing, he must disclose to all his patients the details of the conditions under which he can work.
An issue that Jerry felt very strongly needed his attention was tobacco use among our youth. With the introduction of e-cigarettes, especially the Juul flavored products, there was a 58% increase in smoking among middle school students and 78% of high schoolers. Legislations was signed into law which prohibits the retail sale of any flavored tobacco product. Jerry did note that the tobacco industry will have a bill on the November 2022 ballot to overturn this law.
Jerry then shared his views on the partisan politics in Sacramento. He stated that moderate Democrats and Republicans can work together to get things done. As an example, there were enterprise zones in California where a business could earn $2800 a month tax credit for employees. It turned out there was a strip club in Rancho Cordova that was taking advantage of a loophole in this program. Partnering with a Republican colleague they were able to change this law to prevent this type of abuse. Unfortunately, this type of bi-partisan cooperation no longer exists. The divisions between the parties have just gone to the extremes.
Jerry worked with three different California governors, Arnold Schwartzneger, Jerry Brown and Gavin Newsom; each with a unique style but committed to doing the best for the State of California. Jerry then took questions from members around affordable housing mandates, how to make California work better, and his political plans for the future. He responded to one question with his view that we need a robust two-party system to ensure we have a broad spectrum of solutions for our State.
President Joe thanked Senator Jerry Hill for his appearance at our meeting. He then presented him with a Polio Plus certificate indicating that we would be donating five polio inoculations in his honor.
The meeting was adjourned.
Meeting Recording:
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Jul 21, 2021 12:15 PM
The Psychology of Money: Timeless lessons on wealth, greed, and happiness
The Psychology of Money: Timeless lessons on wealth, greed, and happiness

Mike Kimball and Fritz Brauner will give us their take on the best-selling book by Morgan Housel, “The Psychology of Money: Timeless Lessons on Wealth, Greed, and Happiness.” A few of the obvious-sounding but useful points they will discuss are “Things that have never happened before happen all the time,” and “The most important part of every plan is planning on your plan not going according to plan.” Knowing Mike and Fritz, this promises to be an informative and entertaining program that you won’t want to miss.

Jul 28, 2021 12:15 PM
Aug 04, 2021 12:15 PM
US Dept of Transportation
Aug 11, 2021 12:15 PM
District 5150 District Governor
Aug 25, 2021 12:15 PM
Art and the impact of the pandemic on the art world
Sep 01, 2021 12:15 PM
Burlingame City Update
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Upcoming Events
Program Committee Meeting
Zoom Meeting contact Rotary@nolamarketing.com for access
Aug 03, 2021 8:00 AM
Program Committee Meeting
Zoom Meeting contact Rotary@nolamarketing.com for access
Sep 07, 2021 8:00 AM
View entire list
Member Birthdays
Jerry Kuehn
July 1
Dennis Zell
July 5
Joe La Mariana
July 7
Julius Aires
July 8
James Shypertt
July 11
John Delaney
July 11
Paul Belzer
July 13
Emily Beach
July 27
Charles Rosebrook
July 28
Cheri DeLacy
July 30
Paul Watermulder
Genie Watermulder
July 3
Doug Person
Robin Person
July 8
Marianne Kristofferson
David Kristofferson
July 17