Save the date for our Foundation Bowl-a-Thon

Microsoft Word - Foundation Bowl-a-Thon flyer.docx

Over the years SRC has held bowl-a-thons to raise funds for a variety of causes — Rotary’s PolioPlus, Blue Star Mothers, Capital Region Nordic Alliance, student scholarships, etc. After a one-year hiatus, it’s coming back as “Foundation Bowl-a-Thon,” scheduled for March 1, 2020.

Please save the date!

Here’s the official flyer with all the details. We will be emailing copies to all SRC members so you can help share it on social media, print out dis distribute it via bulletin boards or as handouts at various events, and any other way you can think of to help publicize the fundraiser for the Oley Foundation and the Freedom From Fistula Foundation.

Meeting Clipboard: 12/12/19

SRC ClipboardHeld at Quigley’s Restaurant
573 Columbia Turnpike
East Greenbush, NY 12061

Members Attending (18): Phil Kellerman, Murray Forth, Terry Brewer, Bill Dowd, Dean Calamaras, Doris Calamaras, Charlie Foote, Debbie Rodriguez, Debbie Brown, Peter Brown, Pat Bailey, Wells Packard, Roberto Martinez, Jim Leyhane, Dick Drumm, Kevin Leyhane, Carol Orvis, Mike Bennett.

Guests (2): Jodi Sullivan, Jean Carazza.

Screen Shot 2018-02-15 at 2.09.50 PMMEETING NOTES: President Phil Kellerman presided, welcoming members and two guests. Phil also circulated for members’ signatures a sympathy card for former member Bonnie Nasca whose husband passed away last week. The attendees also agreed to send a monetary donation to the Carol A. Whittaker Global Health Travel Award Fund as requested in Phil Nasca’s obituary. … Members are reminded to contribute their returnable beverage containers from the holiday to our ongoing Clynk recycling-and-redemption effort for ShelterBox. Official plastic bags and bar-code stickers can be picked up at any meeting at Quigley’s. Phil K. also reminded members tonight was the final night of sales of free market coffee as a fundraiser for ShelterBox, with $5 from the sale of each bag going to the aid organization. …

Bloody Mary BasketMurray Forth took final reservations for the 6 p.m. Thursday, December 19, Holiday Party & Gift Basket Raffle he and Maggie are hosting. He stressed that anyone bringing appetizers or desserts limit the size to servings for four to avoid having too many leftovers. Also, attendees are strongly urged to bring along a themed gift basket for the silent auction. Suggested themes have been posted on the webite. …. Terry Brewer reported that Sunday, March 1, 2020, has been reserved for a Foundation Bowl-a-Thon to raise funds for two organizations we regularly support — the Oley Foundation for people using tube feeding and the Freedom From Fistula Foundation that deals with women’s obstetrical issues in sub-Saharan Africa. The site of the event will be the East Greenbush Bowling Center (formerly called Spare Time) on Columbia Turnpike. The contribution is $15 per person for as many frames as you can bowl in one of two sessions — noon to 2 p.m. and 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. We also are soliciting $100 lane sponsors from businesses, individuals, groups, or families. Anyone interested in sponsorships is asked to contact Terry or Murray. …

giftsDebbie Rodriguez thanked all who participated in our annual Adopt-a-Family drive in partnership with Circles of Mercy. The final gift donations will be delivered there on Friday. Debbie delivered another carload of gift earlier, along with a check for a $500 SRC grant to purchase personal hygiene kits. … This was the last dinner meeting of 2019. After next week’s holiday party and a hiatus for the Christmas and New Year’s weeks, we will resume Thursday sessions on January 9. Anyone who has been assigned program dates in January (check the chart on the website calendar page) is asked to let both program coordinator Dick Drumm and webmaster Bill Dowd know the speakers and topics ASAP.


Five SRC members attended the Albany Rotary Club’s annual silent auction fundraiser in support of District 7190 Gift of Life, which usually raised about $5,000. From left: Jim Leyhane, Roberto Martinez, Phil Kellerman, Doris Calamaras, Dean Calamaras. Several donated auction items, and Dean and Doris continue to be SRC’s liaisons with GOL.



PROGRAM: Maple Hill Mental Health Highlights

Jodi Sullivan explains Maple Hill’s mental health program.

Maple Hill Junior-Senior High School today was named one of just 35 schools in the nation selected by the National Council for Behavioral Health’s teen “Mental Health First Aid” pilot program.

The project, which began last year with eight schools, has been expanded with the support of entertainer Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation.

“This first-of-a-kind program will truly make a difference in our communities, and we are excited that our state was chosen … ,” said Glenn Liebman, CEO of the Mental Health Association in New York State (MHANYS).

The course specifically highlights the important step of involving a responsible and trusted adult. To ensure additional support for students taking the training, Maple Hill will train approximately 30 school staff in “Mental Health First Aid for Adults Working With Young People.” Overall, the program aims to ensure that students are able to recognize when a friend or peer may be struggling, and to feel confident what to do to help.

Jodi Sullivan, a vice principal at Maple Hill, is the lead staff member working on the multi-faceted mental health wellness programs at the school.

In her presentation to SRC, she outlined the many components of the Scho0dack Central School District’s ongoing efforts — emotional and physical wellness, skills training in area beyond the classroom, conflict resolution, restorative practices, curriculum writing, creation of a Twitter page called (@maphillwellness (WIldcat Wellness), and many other activities.




Former SRC member Phil Nasca passes at 77

• Former SRC member Phil Nasca died Friday at the age of 77. The following is his obituary as published in today’s Times Union.

Screen Shot 2019-12-11 at 10.45.44 AMALBANY — Philp C. Nasca, 77, born in Buffalo, died suddenly on Friday, December 6, with his wife of 54 years, Bonnie, by his side.

Phil was welcomed into the next life by his parents, Philip L. and Jean Nasca; his son, Jason; his brother Carl; and his sister, Carol. No doubt, there’s a party going on! Phil’s children, Andrea (Damien Schwartz), Christopher (Kimm), and Tony; his grandchildren, Kayla, Michael, Ayana, Abrielle, Nichole, Cassidy, Dylan; and great-grandchild, Izabella will miss his humor and his impromptu history lessons. Phil is also survived by his brother, Patrick, and by many relatives and friends whom he cherished.

Phil’s many interests and hobbies included: astronomy, fishing, travel, history, bird-watching, rocks and minerals, politics, music, old movies, reading, photography, coin-collecting, and exploring new places and making friends around the world.

Phil’s career and commitment to public health was summarized by our good friend, Carol Whittaker: Dr. Nasca returned to the Capital District from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where he had been a faculty member and administrator, to become Dean of the University at Albany’s School of Public Health in 2007. He was well known and respected for his expertise in cancer epidemiology, especially those cancers affecting women and children. He served on numerous grant review boards for national agencies including the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society. His return to Albany was a homecoming of sorts as he had previously served in the New York State Department of Health as the director of cancer epidemiology before accepting the academic appointment in western Massachusetts. In 2001 a Fulbright Fellowship took him to Vietnam where he worked closely with colleagues at two schools of public health there, collaborations that lasted throughout the remainder of his life. He and his wife, who joined him in Hanoi on the first Fellowship and a subsequent one, formed lasting friendships there which took them back to Vietnam frequently and they hosted visiting Vietnamese friends and colleagues often.

He will be especially remembered for his creation and support of the Center for Global Health at the UAlbany School of Public Health and for the many worldwide partnerships that were established and have thrived since the Center was established early in his tenure as dean. He traveled extensively to partner public health schools and agencies and encouraged students to study and to undertake internships abroad. He will also be remembered for being able to establish new programs and manage effectively even during times of budget restraints. He especially enjoyed interactions with students as a teacher and mentor.

Our family wishes to acknowledge the care given to Phil by Drs. Jonah Marshall, Ami Neghandi, and Padma Sripada. Additionally, the nursing staff of St. Peter’s Hospital provided daily compassionate care. Heartfelt thanks to each of you. Phil’s wish to have a simple exit from this world will be honored and his ashes will be scattered at his favorite beach in Cape Cod. Phil’s colleagues and friends at the SUNYA School of Public Health are planning a tribute, and there will be a similar gathering with our very large family and friends in the Buffalo area to celebrate his life. Both events will take at future dates.

In lieu of flowers, and in honor of Phil’s dedication in the fields of education and public health, donations may be made to one of the following: The Carol A. Whittaker Global Health Travel Award Fund: A check may be made out to “The University at Albany Foundation” and sent to SUNY School of Public Health, 1 University Place, Rensselaer, NY, 12144 and include on the memo line: “In memory of Phil Nasca.” You may also email at The Center for Global Health to request information on how to make your donation online. Or donations may be made out to: “The Stephen Piorkowski Epilepsy Scholarship” in Phil’s memory and sent to: Stephen Piorkowski Epilepsy Scholarship, 163 Adams Place, Delmar, NY, 12054.


Your RSVP and input needed for our Holiday Party

SRC Party 2019

You have just four days left to submit your RSVP for our annual Holiday Party & Basket Silent Auction.

We’re planning a traditional holiday prime rib dinner at the East Greenbush home of Maggie and Murray Forth at 6 p.m. Thursday, December 19. It’s just $25 per person for the main meal and beverages.

Here’s your pre-party “to-do” list:

• If you haven’t yet let Maggie or Murray know you’re coming, please do so no later than this Thursday either by letting Murray know at this week’s dinner meeting, or by calling the Forths at 518-477-7433.

• We’re asking guests to bring an appetizer or dessert, but to avoid an overload — or “underload” — in either category it would be appreciated if you would call Maggie well in advance to coordinate your contribution.

• We hope you’re working on  your themed gift basket for the silent auction fundraiser. (If you’re stuck for ideas, check the club website at for some tips.) It’s a major, fun part of the festivities each year.

In the holiday spirit,
Your Rotary Club

P.S. Did you spot the Rotary emblem in the holiday scene above?

Who are the global visitors to our website?

Rotary PassportThe SRC website is regularly visited by club members seeking calendar items, event information, contact data, etc. But, those are not its only visitors. So far this year we have welcomed 359 visitors (no doubt a few of them repeats) from 40 countries.

We get the most visits from Nigeria (60), followed by the United Kingdom (32), and South Africa (21).

A quick review of our statistics for 2019 show visitors from the following, listed alphabetically:

• Australia (9)
• Bangladesh (8)
• Brazil (3)
• British Virgin Islands (2)
• Bulgaria (1)
• Canada (11)
• China (21)
• Colombia (2)
• Côte d’Ivoire / Ivory Coast (1)
• Czech Republic (2)
• Egypt (4)
• France (6)
• Germany (14)
• Hong Kong (1)
• India (33)
• Indonesia (5)
• Israel (5)
• Ireland (19)
• Japan (7)
• Jordan (4)
• Kenya (14)
• Lebanon (2)
• Malaysia (3)
• Netherlands (6)
• New Zealand (8)
• Nigeria (60)
• Pakistan (8)
• Philippines (19)
• Portugal (3)
• Russia (2)
• Serbia (1)
• South Africa (21)
• Sri Lanka (5)
• Sweden (2)
• Switzerland (1)
• Togo (1)
• Uganda (6)
• United Arab Emirates (1)
• United Kingdom (32)
• Zimbabwe (6)

Meeting clipboard: 12/5/19

SRC ClipboardHeld at Quigley’s Restaurant
573 Columbia Turnpike
East Greenbush, NY 12061

Members Attending (14): Phil Kellerman, Murray Forth, Terry Brewer, Debbie Rodriguez, Debbie Brown, Peter Brown, Pat Bailey, Becky Raymond, Wells Packard, Ray Hannan, Roberto Martinez, Jim Leyhane, Dick Drumm, Andy Leyhane.

Guests: None.

Tea for Two
A gift basket idea.

MEETING NOTES: President Phil Kellerman presided. He brought packages of fair trade coffees to sell as a fundraiser for ShelterBox, with $5 from the sale of each package going to the international aid agency. … Murray Forth, who with wife Maggie will be hosting our annual Holiday Party & Themed Baskets Silent Auction at 6 p.m. Thursday, December 19, gave an update on the event. He also encouraged members to bring gift baskets to be auctioned for charitable causes. (Some suggested themes have been posted on the website.) … Phil reminded members that the “spare change jar” proceeds this year will go to the Capital Region Nordic Alliance (CRNA), which provides adaptive sports activities for disabled vets.

Screen Shot 2019-11-22 at 6.00.46 PM… Debbie Rodriguez gave a brief update on the Adopt-a-Family holiday project. Many gifts were brought to the meeting. The deadline for giving Debbie the donated gifts — gift-wrapped and tagged with the recipients’ names — is next Thursday, December 12, in time for delivery to Circles of Mercy for distribution. PLEASE BE SURE  to gift wrap each item and label it with the recipient’s name. … Becky Raymond gave an update on the Danes Rotaract’s plans to raise funds for the Freedom From Fistula Foundation (FFFF). The club’s goal is to help raise $750. She said the idea of a bowl-a-thon proposed by Terry Brewer would help toward this effort. Terry then proposed that the club host a dual-purpose bowl-a-thon to raise funds for FFFF and the Oley Foundation. He will speak to the bowling center management about a tentative March date. Phil said Oley has many members locally who most likely would participate, and Becky said the Rotaract students could participate as well. Attendees expressed their approval for the event and willingness to help out. … Next Thursday’s after-dinner speaker will be Jodi Sullivan, Maple Hill High School assistant principal.

PROGRAM: SRC Fundraising

Rotary CashPhil led a discussion on current fundraising efforts by the club, and the development of future fundraisers to support our community service projects. Some outcomes:

• Murray said another recycling/shredding event will be organized for mid-April 2020.

• Terry said he is uncomfortable with the fact that some members donate so much of their personal money to support the club’s charitable activities. He thought the club should be distributing some funds from the current treasury balance. As an example, he suggested giving $500 to Circles of Mercy to enable the family aid organization to purchase hygiene kits for those in need. Debbie Brown made a motion to do so, Ray Hannan seconded it, and it was approved overwhelmingly.

• This led to a discussion about the amount of funds in the club’s treasury. Phil agreed the club should distribute some additional money to charitable causes, but that the club needs to consider investing some of the remaining balance to earn interest that can support grants while protecting the principal. The club’s Financial Committee will follow up.

• Since two past Cafe Capricio fundraiser dinners were financially successful through sales of raffle tickets, Andy Leyhane agreed to follow up with the Albany restaurant about setting up another such event.

• It was mentioned that resuming the “Rotary Home Cooking” series of member-hosted dinner parties or other social events could be helpful in raising funds and promoting social interaction.

How are we doing with our Clynk project?

Screen Shot 2019-12-05 at 12.54.47 AM

Screen Shot 2017-10-03 at 4.05.45 PM
ShelterBox to the rescue.

At just a nickel or so per container, it takes what seems a loooong while to accumulate sizeable dollar amounts for our ongoing ShelterBox financial support project. But, that doesn’t mean we’re not making progress. We are, slowly but steadily.

SRC already has raised more than $400 from collecting reclaimed deposits on glass, plastic, and aluminum beverage containers this year, plus $2,050 in member-and-friend pledges collected by our ShelterBox coordinator, Bill Dowd. And, for every package of free market coffee sold by Phil Kellerman during the holidays, we get another $5.

Pennies make dollars, and the citizens of the world who are victims of natural and man-made disasters such as floods, earthquakes, typhoons, hurricanes, civil war, and the like are helped by SRC’s support of ShelterBox’s international aid efforts.

If you can help with any dollar amount small or large, please let Bill known ASAP. And, thank you all for your generosity and humanity. Each cumulative $1,000 we raise pays for one ShelterBox that contains a tent housing up to 10 people — sometimes for several years each, water purification items, emergency tools, cooking equipment, first-aid kits, sleeping bags or cots, and other basic life-sustaining items.

For more information about ShelterBox, click here and be inspired.