Posted by Bruce Cathcart on Sep 29, 2017
Dick, Jeff, Joe, Roy and Baird are greeted by Dr. Bruce, Sandy and Kevin
President Baird called our meeting to order at 12:00 noon and made the announcement to several Rotarians that arrived out of breath and a few minutes into the pledge that we would be going back to the old start time of 12:15 beginning with the next meeting. He then led the members in the pledge of allegiance. Jeff Fishbein gave the invocation.
We had only one visiting Rotarian this day, our speaker District Attorney Mike Hestrin from the Rotary Club of Corona.
We had only one guest this week, Dan Fissori’s guest Javier Lopez from the Coachella Valley Housing Authority.
Baird again announced that starting Friday October 6, 2017 we would resume our normal meeting time of 12:15 PM.  Please spread the word and try not to be too EARLY!!!
Our next Club Board meeting will take place on Tuesday October 17th at 5:30 PM at a new location to be determined.
Volunteers are still needed for the Props and Hops event coming up on November 18th.  We will still be participating with the City of La Quinta for the Brew in LQ through the Rotary Club Foundation, but club members will not be asked to volunteer or participate in the Brew in LQ this year.  It was determined that the club could just not field enough volunteers for both events on the same day.  So please sign up to work at the Props and Hops event.  Please see Allan Levin for the sign-up sheet and for answers to any questions you may have.
Saturday, November 11th at 2:00 is the dedication of the "Never to be Forgotten Fountain" honoring our Veterans and Active Men and Women.  The event will be held at the new site of  Dick and Victory Grund’s Old Town Artisan Studio located at 78046 Calle Barcelona, La Quinta, CA. 92253. The Ribbon Cutting and Open house will last until 5:00 pm. There will be demonstrations of classes that they have now and ones they plan to have in the future. Their mission is to offer 'hands on" art classes and experiences and to support art education for those with physical, emotional and financial challenges. We hope you can come by on opening day. 600 children painted tile this summer for the fountain. It will be a beautiful tribute. Thank you all!
Robert announced that we have 72 La Quinta High School Students signed up for our Interact Club and that they will be having their first meeting in the very near future.  Any members interested in working with our High School Rotary Interact Club should see Robert.
Sandy Stewart announced that the Club received a Thank You letter from Dominic Francisco, one of last year's scholarship recipients.  It was a well written letter updating us on his progress and expressing his heartfelt thanks.
Our Speaker this Friday will be our District 5330 Governor Dr. Manzoor Massey.  Here is his message:
“What is life? The caring answer is not: “Be what you want to be”, or even “Be the best you can be!”  Each is nothing more than a platitude, a cliché that does little for personal development, self-esteem, confidence, or actual results. There is a saying that if you teach a man to fish, he will eat for a lifetime. This website is designed to teach you how to fish in the lake of achievement for the rest of your life; how to develop the internal psychology of success; how to win at the game of life, and how to win your own success in the field of personal development and self-help.
When it comes to self-help and personal development, building your confidence towards a better self and life achievement, it helps to have life coaching from someone whose career has been devoted to helping people establish a development plan for themselves. Life ideas you can implement immediately:
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  • Building a win-win mentality with yourself and others
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What is life without success? How do you achieve the personal education, self-development, personal improvement, and success that you have been looking for? Come and look within for information on self-improvement and building a success attitude.  Go to to learn more.”
On a really sad note… earlier this week Rey Neufeld received a message from Marji Vasholz about our dear friend and past La Quinta Rotarian Lothar.  Apparently Lothar has had a severe heart attack and the emergency procedure left him with dementia.  "He is cognitively impaired and not likely to recover."  I know that we all send our positive thoughts and prayers out to Lothar’s wife Marji and the entire Vasholz family.
With almost $300.00 in the raffle Bruce C. had his ticket pulled.  As is his usual custom Favorite Server Dominic was given the opportunity to pick a marble and greatly enhance her tip for the day.  Unfortunately for her (but fortunate for the club members) she drew a white marble and was awarded the $5 consolation prize for her efforts.
Our Fine Master Allan Levin attempted to make his entire budget today by starting with Corry Hunter who had recently celebrated his birthday, his anniversary with wife Kristyn and had a few no make-ups.  It being the end of the month the members in attendance all gasped as Corry threw in $73… admittedly considerably more cash than Kristen normally allows him to carry around.  There was speculation about robbing a bank or an under the table tip from a satisfied client who managed to avoid paying taxes.  It was decided the most likely of reasons was that his Grandma still sends him a check every year for his birthday which Corry had cashed right before the meeting!  Whatever the source, we thank you Corry for your generosity.  Bruce C. despite his Fine Free status this month paid the balance of his “buck a year” for his birthday back in August.  Unlucky Merv gave $5 for his “prophecy gone bad” about the Steelers loss to the Bears last Sunday and Greg Lane chipped in a few bucks for his pesky cell phone that went off during the meeting.  Dr. Bruce gladly paid for the upcoming “Day of Atonement” and to no one’s surprise Dave Turner paid for arriving a few minutes late.  Ending the day on a happy note… Captain Roy threw in a few happy dollars to celebrate the recovery and return to duty of Deputy Sheriff David Solis who was shot 5 times while on duty in Coachella.  Great news Captain Roy!  Thank you and your Deputies for your service.  We’ve got your back!
This day we were honored to have as our speaker Riverside County District Attorney Michael A. Hestrin.  Mike was elected in June of 2014 and took office on January 5, 2015.  He is a native of the Coachella Valley and the son of a Palm Springs Police officer… “So law enforcement is in my blood” he shared with us.  Mike enlightened us all to the challenges he faces on a daily basis in the form of new laws and directives that come from Sacramento.  Being a Sanctuary City or Sanctuary State is just “bad law”!  Our county has a 70% recidivism rate, meaning that 70% of criminals released from jail are convicted of another crime and sent back to jail.  “That’s horrible!” said Mike.  It was clear to us all that Mike is a “tough on crime” D.A. but that his hands are tied when it comes to effectively deterring crime.  He explained that the number of stolen vehicles in our county is way up because there is no longer any punishment associated with the crime.  Despite it being a felony, since our jails are so over crowded a non-violent offender convicted of auto theft will get a two year sentence only to be released within two weeks of reporting to jail!  As Mike said, “You have to work very hard in California to go to prison!”  In fact we learned that it usually takes about 10 felony convictions before you can advance out of the County Jail system and be sent to a State Prison.  One of the more frightening facts that we learned was that the Coachella Valley is “Ground Zero” for the International Drug Trade since it is perfectly located to serve as a distribution center with its easy access to 3 freeways, its wide open spaces and its proximity to Mexico.  And yes, the Mexican Cartel is here and doing a bustling business.  Despite the deck being stacked against Mike and our Local Law Enforcement Officers they have managed to establish two programs that are having great success in impacting the crime rate here in the Coachella Valley and on Crime Prevention.  The first program is the Organized Crime Unit that has had great success with their Gang Impact Team in getting the valley-wide Gang injunction and their two more recent Gang member/Parolee round ups, Operation Desert Impact and Operation Valley Vigilance.  The second program focuses on Crime Prevention and involves Volunteer Officers outreach programs where individual offers interact with children at risk as well as members at the local Boys and Girls Clubs.  These officers are able to establish good relationships with these kids and provide positive mentoring that is designed to help them to make good choices as they mature that will hopefully keep them out of the “system”.  Mike was kind enough to stay late and field many questions from our club members.  It was an excellent and eye-opening presentation and one that made us all very proud of our current District Attorney.  Thank you Mike for all that you do!
President Baird called the meeting to a close at 1:30 PM with the Four Way Test.
This newsletter was written by Bruce Cathcart