Escondido Sunrise Rotary Bulletin

District 5340 Governor, Chuck Pretto Joins Us…

August 18, 2022


Call to Order



President Tina Pope rang the bell at 7:37am to call the meeting to order.


Pledge of Allegiance and Invocation

Jim Ponder led the pledge of allegiance and Chris Miller delivered the invocation


Guests and Visiting Rotarians

Tina Pope introduced her guest: Dane White with the Escondido Board of Education.  He was invited to Rotary by Tina and was officially welcomed as a new Sunrise Rotary Club member.  He lives in Escondido with his wife and 2 daughters.  Welcome Dane!


Birthdays and Anniversaries

Brad Allaband will be celebrating a birthday on 8/23.  

Barry and Lee Baker celebrated 52 years of marriage vacationing at Bass Lake for a week.  Their 7 adult children, along with their spouses and 18 of their 25 grandchildren, joined them for 3 of those days.  They hiked Yosemite, spent time on the lake boating, inter-tubing and fishing.  A great time was had by all and both Barry and Lee feel incredibly blessed.



High 5’s and Announcements


Judy Fitzgerald announced that Kirk and Kim Henson’s, Fix Auto shop is going to be honored at the Greater Escondido of Commerce Induction and Awards ceremony on 8/25 with the Business of the Year Award.

Jack Anderson, Jerry Faye, and Judy Fitzgerald expressed gratitude to Rich Aeling for the exceptional and timely service Aellott has provided.


Mike Dunlap shared pictures from his trip to Iceland and shared thr richness of the culture and beautiful scenery.


George Beitner was still recovering from a grueling 5 days of activities that would shame the Iron Man Competitor.  George competed in the first Tin Man Competition, a series of events against young men in their 20’s and 30’s.  The events included golf, pickle ball, volleyball and corn hole.  He felt very proud of sharing the 1st place position with a 30-something year old.  Although this was a very memorable experience, George will be retiring from competing as he feels he’s had his day in the sun and wants to give the young ones a chance to shine.  He later confessed that it was more due to the 3 day recovery time post competition that he will not be subjecting himself to anytime soon.



Tina reminded everyone to mark their calendars to attend the Membership Month workshop that will be held online on October 20th.


Liz Pope invited the Rotarians to participate in the LEAD training for the intermediate school students enrolled in the 4th to 8th grades.  Two students from each school have already been selected to attend the camp.  The students are from the San Pascual Academy, Quantum, and Escondido Union.


Richard Agnew gave an update on the Grape Day 5k.  There are approximately 165 runners already registered and $57k had been raised and The Clash is still in the lead.  It is expected to grow after next week after Palomar Health promotes the event.  

Jim Ponder encouraged the Rotarians to be intentional about taking the fliers with them as they go out in the community and leave them at businesses and shops that support community events.



A Moment in History

Barry Baker took us down memory lane recalling how the name “Rotary” was chosen by the founders.  The first membership group were a few men who came together to do good in their community.  The first meetings were rotated between the businesses and the meeting host was given the title Rotarian.  When the membership grew too large to be accommodated at businesses they establishing a regular meeting place and officially named the group Rotarians.



Who Are You Anyway?


Barry Baker invited Rotary District Governor Chuck Pretto to be interviewed by Kendra and Liz.  Chuck answered the 3 questions stating he joined Rotary because the motto “Service above Self” appealed to him. Chuck supports the American Cancer Society after his wife had once been diagnosed with cancer and is now cancer free, thanks in large part to the organization.  He also shared that his favorite hobby is rocketry and that he regularly goes to the Imperial Valley to shoot his 18” tall rockets.




District Governor Chuck Pretto joined the San Diego Rotary in 1992 at 34 years old.  He graduated USD with a law degree and is currently a business law attorney, regularly providing services to his wife whose family owns and operates Koby’s Swap Meet in San Diego.  He and his wife live in Mission Bay after becoming empty nesters and decided to downsize and live closer to the water.  He has 2 identical twin granddaughters who bring him great joy and whom he regularly spends time with.


District Governor, Chuck Pretto Speaking to Sunrise Rotarians…


He initially believed Rotary was a networking group and quickly realized it was much more.  He was considering leaving Rotary when then club President Jim Hughes challenged him to host and exchange student.  He reluctantly agreed not knowing if he had the capacity and ability for such a challenge, but his wife showed enthusiasm in the opportunity to host an exchange student.  This was a life changing experience for him and his family.  He realized through this experience that, “A world that unites creates lasting change in our community, the globe and in ourselves.  We are transformed when becoming a Rotarian.”  He and his family have since hosted 7 exchange students, many of which his family regularly keep in touch with.


For the upcoming year, Chuck has made a commitment to get involved and make changes in the mental health services, especially focusing on young teens.  While researching mental health issues facing this young demographic, he learned that San Diego county has the highest suicide rate in California, many linked to social media pressures especially affecting young women.  He extended an invitation to the Sunrise Rotary to participate in supporting mental health services at Rady’s Children’s Hospital, Vista Hill Hospital and True Care Mental Services.  From working alongside the healthcare treatment centers he has learned that San Diego still needs 20,000 mental health care workers.  


Chuck is working with the PEACE organization who are asking Rotary clubs to donate PEACE poles at local high schools to bring an awareness to the teen mental health crisis.  The motto “May Peace Prevail on Earth” is etched in different languages intended to reach everyone in the community.  San Diego’s first Rotary President has committed to dedicate in person the poles donated by Rotary Clubs.



PEACE Pole Proposal

Jim Ponder proposed that the Sunrise Rotary Club make the commitment to provide a PEACE pole at San Pascual High School.  President Liz Pope approved the proposal.


President Tina pictured with District Governor, Chuck Pretto…


Opportunity Drawing

It should come as no surprise that whenever John Boyce attends a meeting he wins everything.  He didn’t draw the winning card, but he did take home the lunch money.  This begs the question, which Rotarian has he taken to lunch with his winnings?



Next Week’s Meeting…


Join us on Thursday August 25, 7:30 AM at the Chamber of Commerce…

Our program will be presented by: Escondido High School District Superintendent, Anne Staffieri


Meeting Adjourned

President Tina Pope thanked the guest speaker and closed the meeting at 8:33 am