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Join us on a Wednesday convenient to you and experience the fun and friendship of the Rotary Club of San Jose!

Contact our Executive Director, Leslee Hamilton for more details (408) 297-6101.

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“Service Above Self”

Rotary is a service organization of business and community leaders united worldwide.  Rotarians are making a positive impact in our local and global communities.

The Rotary Club of San Jose

Benefiting the community and our world through action, integrity, service, and fellowship.

The Rotary Club of San Jose is the largest, most active and well-known service organization in the community. We are a leadership organization working together to make a difference. Our members include local business, nonprofit, professional and civic leaders. We form lasting friendships through our shared Rotary experiences including weekly meetings with interesting speakers, committee meetings and projects, social events and group service projects within our community and internationally.

Diversity & Inclusion

Having a diverse and inclusive Rotary Club means we value and welcome individuals of all ages, cultures, ethnicities, and races to our Club. We invite younger people, women, and minorities who support Rotary’s values, ideals, and mission to join our members in service to our community, and we strive to give all members equal opportunities to serve as leaders within our Club.

The Speaker for October 28th: Rick Young

"How the Plastic Industry has Used Recycling to Sell More Plastic"

Rick Young is an investigative producer working with the PBS documentary series FRONTLINE since the early 90’s.  In 2009, he launched a partnership between FRONTLINE and the Investigative Reporting Workshop at American University that has produced a dozen FRONTLINE documentaries, including the most recent, “Plastic Wars,” a collaboration with NPR. He was a John S. Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford in 2007-08.  Before turning to journalism, he spent six years as an investigator for the U.S. House of Representatives.


The Meeting Summary for October 21, 2020

Rotarian Andrew Bales sent a musical Cuban piece, Danzón No. 2, to President Fernando who played it and then called the 5272st Rotary meeting to order at 12:15 p.m. Rotarians and guests were welcomed.  President Fernando recognized the October birthdays of Rotarians. 

Rotarian Gary Giannini gave a heartfelt eulogy for Bill Del Biaggio. Bill was born, reared and educated in San Jose before attending college in Oregon where he played football. He was Gary’s roommate in college. Bill was honored throughout his life for his philanthropy, efforts to improve our community and service on numerous nonprofit boards. Bill’s careers included beer distribution and banking. Bill’s lovely wife Helen predeceased him. Bill is survived by two sons and five grandchildren. Bill, in the Jesuit tradition, was a “Man for Others.” 

Following the eulogy, Rotarian Jeremy Harris played Auld Lang Syne. 
Rotarian Catherine Tompkison gave an update on the many activities that Military Care Committee have done to support our veterans. Catherine and Dave Sylva are co-chairs of this vibrant committee. 

Rotarian Karen Philbrick sponsored new member Irma Garcia who was born and reared in San Jose. Irma’s parents were hard-working immigrants who taught her the value of money. She graduated from Oak Grove High School and San Jose State University. She has an M.A. in English. Irma currently serves as the communication and Operations Manager at the Mineta Transportation Institute.  Irma is an avid reader and runner. 
President Fernando presented Julia Casto with her Blue Badge. Her sponsor was Randy Zechman. 
President Fernando made the following announcements:
1.    World Polio Day is this Saturday October 24.
2.    Thanksgiving program will feature Rotarians who describe that for which they are thankful. Please contact Lenoir Kieve if you would like to participate.
3.    Fine Opportunities will come up next week; contact Gay Crawford if you have news to share.
4.    The Emerging Artists program from last week is now on YouTube just click on this link.
5.    Cub Scout Popcorn sales are online this year. Look for "Search for a Scout" and enter Alex Pizarro and ZIP Code 95112 or use code CDG8ETGZ before you check out. The order will be shipped directly to your house.
6.    Friday noon is Zoom Chat n’ Chew lead by Rotarians Linda Gold and Dave Sandretto. The Zoom meeting ID is 835 1560 0036 and the passcode is 921440

Rotarian Rod Diridon introduced our speaker Carl Guardino who spoke on “Building our Future in Broken Times.” He started with his theme - stretch goals, build bridges with each other and lift others up. He explained that California Needs to address THEE - Transportation, Housing, Education and the Environment.

Transportation – Our problems may be worse coming out of COVID unless we think of carpooling, public transportation, and other alternatives to the single occupancy vehicle. Mindset matters and we need to rid ourselves of a “can-not-do” attitude. Caltrain should triple ridership post COVID. 
Housing and Homelessness – We have not met California housing needs in 3 decades. We need to address the needs of homeless, renters and buyers. 
Education and the workforce – He described the Community College to Career Initiative. 
Energy and the Environment – We must be better stewards of our environment. We need clean energy, affordable to everyone. With less traffic during COVID, we see the improvement in air quality.

The club had more questions of Carl than there was time to answer them. 

A donation was made to Our City Forest in honor of our informative speaker. Carl then said that he and 
his wife would purchase 10 additional City Forest trees. 

Next week’s speaker is Rick Young who will talk about “How the Plastic Industry has Used Recycling to Sell More Plastic.”

The meeting was adjourned at 1:14 p.m. but left open for those who wanted to stay and socialize.  

Please click here to view this week’s broadcast.

Respectfully submitted, Karyn Sinunu-Towery, Meeting Summaries Committee.

Join the Planning Meeting for Gala 2021

Here’s your chance to help plan our biggest party/fundraiser of the year, with the proceeds helping to fund our work in the community.
President Fernando has chosen the fun theme Fiesta de Gala Rotaria, and we’re looking for people to help with sponsor recruitment, event planning, the auction, and event logistics.
The first meeting for the Gala Committee will be Wednesday, November 4, 4:00 p.m. via Zoom.
If you’re interested in joining the energetic group that is planning for this entertaining and COVID-safe event, please contact event chairpersons Mauricio Cordova or Sarah Janigian.


Rotary Global Grant Scholarship

Apply for the Rotary International annual Scholarship: A $30,000 Rotary Global Grant Scholarship will be awarded in the 2021-2022 school year for graduate-level coursework or research outside of the United States

The scholarship support is for graduate level overseas study to further international understanding, peace, promote goodwill, learn another culture and/or language, and share one’s own culture.

March 1, 2021 is the deadline for submission (Interviews will be April 3, 2021).  
Application and more information can be found here:

October Birthdays

New Member Irma Garcia

I’m Irma Garcia, born, raised, and locally brewed in San Jose. I was raised by two hard-working immigrant parents. My mother worked in the old canneries and volunteered at school and church events while my father worked his way up from a dishwasher in too many local kitchens to owning two restaurants and some rental properties. As a result of his investments, I learned the value of a dollar working a 1957 National cash register while attending Oak Grove High School and was an avid member of the Southside, now Levin, Boys & Girls Club. I’m a Spartan twice over having been employed there and attended as a student. Having recently received my M.A. in English, I now have the pleasure of serving as the Communications and Operations Manager at the Mineta Transportation Institute. Thank you to my sponsor Dr. Karen Philbrick.
In my personal time, I’m an avid reader, I get plenty of outdoor air (at least 6 days a week) running, biking, or hiking, and have a wonderful and diverse network of friends and family that are a reminder of how far San Jose has come and can still go. I’m truly looking forward to reciprocal opportunities that uplift the extended community and also, hopefully not too far into the future, to in-person events across the board– my dancing feet and passport have been woefully underutilized as a result of this pandemic.


Rick Young
Speaker: Rick Young
Topic: How the Plastic Industry has Used Recycling to Sell More Plastic
October 28th 2020 at 12:15 pm
More info

Larry Gerston
Speaker: Larry Gerston
Topic: Election Recap
November 4th 2020 at 12:15 pm
More info

Book Club
November 9th 2020 at 11:00 am
More info

General McMaster
Speaker: General McMaster
Topic: Battlegrounds
November 11th 2020 at 12:15 pm
More info

Downtown Impact Committee
November 12th 2020 at 8:00 am
More info

Club Board Meeting
November 17th 2020 at 7:30 am
More info

Bob Kieve's Rotary Thanksgiving Program
Speaker: Bob Kieve's Rotary Thanksgiving Program
November 18th 2020 at 12:15 pm
More info

Foundation Board Meeting
November 19th 2020 at 7:30 am
More info


Larry Gerston
Election Recap
Nov 4th 2020 12:15 pm
More info

General McMaster
Nov 11th 2020 12:15 pm
More info

Bob Kieve's Rotary Thanksgiving Program

Nov 18th 2020 12:15 pm
More info