Posted by John Dean on Jul 21, 2020
President JT Harold Forbus (Accounting | Bogdan & Frasco) called the meeting to order at 12:15 PM. 50 participants joined this meeting via Zoom. There were no visiting Rotarians. Among the guests was Patricia Frost, today's guest speaker.

President JT commented on the return (i.e., "almost" return) of baseball. Last evening the San Francisco Giants defeated the Oakland A's, 6-2, in a pre-season game before ZERO fans at the Oakland Coliseum. This was not exactly a classic version of the national pastime, but it was a good start.
Rotary Moments 
President JT shared how Rotary is truly international. To illustrate, he showed two photographs. The first was a screenshot of a Facebook post from Mario Fernandes of Ribeirão Preto, Brazil (outside São Paulo). Mario posted that he had visited our Club in 2016 and gave a shout out to past president Stephanie Schmautz (Elder Care and Senior Services | The Carlisle) and past president John Hoch (Financial Services: Advising | Retired). 

President JT also showed a photograph of Muhammad Aslam Chishti from the Rotary Club of Islamabad Downtown in Pakistan. Muhammad is the self-described “pin king” of Rotary with hundreds of Rotary pins covering his hat and shirt. President JT mentioned his intention to give Muhammad a Rotary Club of San Francisco pin at the next Rotary International Convention.
Week In Review
President-elect Mary Liu (Real Estate: Sales | Vanguard Properties/JM Real Estate Group) reported on the District 5150 Rotary Means Business panel discussion and networking opportunity held on July 18, 2020 via Zoom. 117 people—including Rotarians and non-Rotarians—participated in the event, which was moderated by PDG Sue Rokaw (Law: Insurance | Deans & Homer). Topics addressed by the panelists included women in leadership; finding global talent; and conducting business and growing a business in a COVID-19 world. After the panel discussion, participants went to breakout rooms for discussion and virtual networking. Feedback has been great, and the committee is already beginning to plan another event. Mary thanked John Mathers (Management Consulting | eVo Associates), Tricia Tran (Medical Services), Sunny Singh (Financial Services: Advising | Wedbush Securities) and Stacey Poole (Law: Family | Lerner Poole & Stewart LLP) for their help in facilitating the breakout sessions.

President JT then thanked members of our Club who had responded to a recent request for help delivering Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Dora Dye (Education: Community College | City College of San Francisco) and David Dye (Management Consulting | Retired) picked up and delivered over 100 boxes of finished gowns to be transported to Texas and then picked up cut fabric and delivered them to Something Labs, where the pieces would be assembled into another 10,000 gowns. Bob Hermann (Information Technology: Administration | Retired) then described how he and Dan Joraanstad (Financial Services: Advising | Retired) had delivered plastic shields and installed them at Holy Name School, where school administrators were grateful to have them. See photos here.
Member Moment
Miranti Ojong (Financial Services: Advising | Team Armada), who joined our Club almost a year ago, gave a brief overview of her path to Rotary. Born in Germany, her family moved to Jakarta and then, when she was six, her family came to the United States. Her family had interests in the hospitality industry and in real estate development. She attended Cornell University initially, assuming she would pursue a career in the hospitality industry or real estate. The driving force in her life was that she wanted to make a difference and have an impact. She has traveled extensively, both internationally and throughout the United States. In the course of her professional life, she has founded several companies, including firms offering financial planning, college planning, financial services, and real estate development. Miranti is currently working on sustainable, off-grid real estate development in Northern California with the project set to start soon. A single mom, she added that she is driven and works hard, because everything she does is for her four-year-old son.
New Initiative from the Development Committee
Vice President of Development Christopher Wiseman (Event Planning | Glaucoma Research Foundation) announced that the Development Committee is ramping up and seeking more members. Their first Zoom meeting is on July 29, 2020, and Christopher promised that monthly meetings would be 30 minutes or less. He added that the Development Committee is undertaking a new initiative—a plan to raise $100,000, split evenly between the San Francisco Rotary Foundation and The Rotary Foundation. While Christopher acknowledged this is a big goal, he noted that the needs of our community in this era of COVID-19 are huge, and they are critical. Several donors had already pledged, and $25,000 had already been raised. Christopher urged everyone to give what they could; the goal is for all Club members to participate in this campaign. 
Immediately after Christopher's announcement of the initiative, the following made a pledge:
  • President JT pledged $1,000.
  • President-elect Mary Liu pledged $1,000.
  • Tom Brunner (Nonprofit Management | Glaucoma Research Foundation) pledged $1,000.
  • Nancy Graydon (Development | Glaucoma Research Foundation) pledged $1,000.
  • Wendy Ross (Banking: Management | Bank of San Francisco) pledged $2,000. 
President JT highlighted a few events in the coming weeks from social activities to service opportunities and educational events. Please check the Club calendar for registration and more information.
Guest Speaker
Anita Stangl (Medical Services | Alliance for Smiles) introduced Patricia Frost, today's guest speaker and also Anita's niece. Patricia spent 15 years with the Contra Costa Office of Emergency Services. She retired as its Director last year. Her passion is the needs of children in the face of disasters, and she currently serves as Vice President of the National Pediatric Disaster Coalition. Her topic was “Children and Disaster: Being Aware and Prepared during COVID-19”. 
At the outset, Patricia noted that “COVID-19 had changed everything.” She added that unlike any other disaster in our lifetime, COVID-19 is a truly global pandemic. In recent years, the nation had experienced a flurry of national disasters. Nationwide, in 2019 there were 61 separate declarations of national disaster from floods to forest fires to hurricanes.
Said Patricia, "The majority of families in the US are simply not prepared for a disaster of any kind. Many are in denial and assume it won’t happen here or to me. Or they naively assume the government will help them and care for them in a disaster; or they simply don’t want to think about it; or they procrastinate and never take time to prepare. Even FEMA states 'YOU are the help, until help arrives.' Everyone should prepare a 'Go kit' with emergency supplies; in fact, you should have one in your car and one at home." 
According to Patricia, COVID-19 presents many unique challenges to the healthcare infrastructure and to children. Pandemics are “marathons”: it typically takes years from the time a virus is identified to develop an effective vaccine and to deploy it to the public. COVID-19 is surging in California even though we had time to prepare. Despite initial indications that COVID-19 doesn’t impact children, there has been a 45% increase in child COVID-19 cases in California from June 29 to July 9, 2020. Worse, we now know that children seem to have a delayed reaction to COVID-19 and develop severe complications including lung inflammation and organ failure. This syndrome named MIS-C is likely to start showing a marked increase in children in the coming weeks. 
Patricia also addressed the widespread focus on “minimizing the spread” and noted that this is critical. If we fail to do this, our health care system will be overwhelmed, much like New York City in April and May. She added that the Bay Area alone has over 1.5 million children under the age of 17, but statewide, California has only 3,404 pediatric general care beds in hospitals and only 603 pediatric critical care beds. We have adequate capacity now, but if the surge gets out of control, things will change quickly and our healthcare system will be unable to cope.
With regard to the coming school year, Patricia mentioned that children and hygiene present special challenges. They congregate in groups, such as childcare facilities and schools, making social distancing difficult; they shed more virus when laughing, sneezing, or coughing; and they are always touching things such as tables, mouths, faces, etc. All of these allow the virus to spread much more easily than among adults. Patricia believes it is overly optimistic to believe students can return to school before a suitable vaccine and treatment therapies are developed. That said, she added that schools are a “recovery beacon”: no one wants a year of remote learning, with all of the childcare challenges, reduced learning quality, and employment issues for working parents. Children from disadvantaged households are impacted even more severely due to lower vaccination rates generally; reliance on school breakfast and lunch programs for nutrition; domestic violence issues; lack of in-home or other suitable childcare; and financial pressures from the shelter-in-place protocols. Unfortunately, remote learning is the safest option at this point pending a vaccine. This is a medical issue and not a political one. Patricia ended by noting that more information is available at the National Pediatric Disaster Coalition.

President JT thanked Patricia, and mentioned that 100 children would be inoculated against polio in her name.
The meeting was adjourned at 1:30 PM.
Photos and editing by Dora Dye