This Week’s Presentation, Jim Bonesteel Executive Director of The Rensselaer Plateau Alliance

Join us this week at Moscatiello’s on Thursday night at 6:00pm to hear Jim Bonesteel, Executive Director of the Rensselaer Plateau Alliance. The Rensselaer Plateau is one of the largest and most ecologically intact native habitats in New York State. The preservation of this landscape for future generations is the vision of the Rensselaer Plateau Alliance.

The Plateau covers about 118,000 acres in the towns of Berlin, Brunswick, Grafton, Hoosick, Nassau, Petersburgh, Pittstown, Poestenkill, Sand Lake, Stephentown and the Village of East Nassau.

The RPA has recently begun steps to merge with the Rensselaer Land Trust.

As always, if you can’t join us in person, you may do so using the Zoom link located on our calendar page.

Menu choices this week include Antipasto Salad, Chicken Marsala, or Cheese Ravioli

Meeting Clipboard 5/25/23

Rotary Meeting (Moscatello’s) 5/25/23 Minutes

Menu: Rustica Salad with Chicken/Chicken Florentine/Portabella Ravioli

Members in attendance: Jim Lehayne, Peter Brown, Deb Brown, Pat Bailey, Andy Leyhane, Roberto Martinez, Phil Kellerman, Dick Drumm, and via Zoom, Becky Raymond, Ray Hannan and Charlie Foote

Guests: Joan Bishop

Guest speaker: Ed Kellerman: The Beauty of Public Speaking

Next week: Jim Bonesteel from Rennselaer Plateau Alliance

Old Business:

Gift of Life Annual Golf Tournament – the upcoming week is the drawing for the Barrel of Booze fund-raiser for Gift of Life.

Town of Schodack Music and Movie Nights.

Pat and Phil reported they attended the first movie night at the Town Park and sold out of 25 boxes of popcorn at $3 dollars a box, and also sold some drinks for a gross net of $100 to the club. The attendance was fair but both thought the event for Rotary was quite successful.

Pete and Deb agreed to attend and have a table at the June 6th music in the park.  Phil suggested that popcorn be sold at the music events.  Becky agreed to join Deb Rodriguez for the August 1st music night. Phil agreed to attend the Friday, August 18 movie night and Ray and Pat agreed to join him.

Phil asked those volunteering to be in touch with him prior to their attendance so he could make arrangements to pick up popcorn.

Dues: Members were reminded to pay dues by June first. Roberto and Jim said that they would follow up with those who have not paid.

Check update: Phil said that there was no word from Christine Fowler on the initial check presented to the South Sudan Water Project. Murray was not in attendance to provide an update.

Membership update:  Danny from Casey’s wants to join and Mary Alice Caldes has paid to be a member.

New Business:

Becky discussed the Freedom from Fistula foundation and the lack of pre-natal care in Africa causing fistula.  She asked that the club make a donation and Roberto followed up by suggesting that the club match a donation by Rotaract of up to $200.  Members approved the motion.

Speaker:  Phil introduced his brother, Dr. Ed Kellerman, who spoke about “The Beauty of Public Speaking.” Dr. Kellerman addressed what makes a good public speaker and what makes one person more persuasive than another speaker.  He discussed how important it was for speakers to stick to no more that three main points during any talk, and that research was critical to boosting any talk.  Sticking to a time limit, proper eye contact and language, and fluency help make for good public speaking.  

This Week’s Guest Speaker, Ed Kellerman: The Beauty of Public Speaking

Joining us at Moscatiello’s via Zoom for this week’s meeting is SRC’s Phill Kellerman’s brother Ed Kellerman as our guest presenter. Ed who visited our club a few weeks ago will be speaking on “The Beauty of Public Speaking”. Looking forward to seeing everyone this Thursday. Once again if you are unable to attend in person, you can join us via Zoom using the link on the calendar page.

Meeting Clipboard 5/18/23

Rotary Meeting (Moscatiello’s) 5/18/23 Agenda

Menu: Chicken Ceasar Salad, Linguini with Baby Clams in white wine sauce

Penne alla Vodka

Members in attendance:  Debbie and Peter Brown, Phil Kellerman, Dick Drumm, Pat Bailey, Ray Hannan, Murray Forth, Jim Leyhane, Andy Leyhane, Kevin Leyhane, Roberto Martinez.  Zoom: Becky Raymond, Carol Orvis and Charlie Foot. 14 members

Guests in attendance: Dr. Kathy Platoni


The Pledge

The Blessing

Theme for the Year:  “Growing Fellowship and Service Locally and Globally”  

As discussed at the board meeting we are looking for service projects and guest speakers should relate to this theme.  

Proxy Votes:  If unable to attend proxy votes can be submitted to a board member who will be in attendance.  Proxy vote may also be submitted using the Remind App text notification.

Remind App:  Allows group texting for quicker sharing of information in the case of rescheduling, proxy voting, and may serve as a quick reminder for events.  Limited to 150 characters.  To join group:

Send a text to the number:  81010

Text this message:  @srcrot

Guest Speaker:  Dr. Kathy Platoni, Phil introduction, joining us via Zoom to speak on PTSD at 6:50p

Phil introduced his longtime friend whom he met in college in Miami.  She has an extensive portfolio and many honors.  She’s retired Military and a clinical psychologist. 

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder represents a brain injury from an acute external event. It became defined in 1982. It is an injury and not a disease. The new thoughts are that it can be modified in a positive way by acute psychological intervention by a team of therapists. Now  it is not considered a psychotical event, but a structural change in the brain that can be seen on PET Scans.  The traditional response of exercise therapy and therapy animals has some beneficial effects. Patients often avoid driving, have flash backs, have negative thoughts about themselves, and can’t experience joys they once had.  Treatment is individualized and there are no medicines that are clearly effective. 

NEXT Weeks Speaker:  Tentative Dan Fumarola from Casey’s.

Gift Of Life 25th Annual Golf Tournament: Thursday September 14, 2023.  Brochure and link to register is on the website.  Thanks to those who bought tickets to support GOL.

Grant update, Jim and Roberto: Distict Grant 23-34 has been submitted. Thanks for everyone supporting the effort. Awaiting awardees for this year’s grant, 22-23, from Maple Hill and Rensselaer.  Thanks to Terry Brewer for tracking.

Event & Summer Nights in the park Pat & Phil:  Schedule for summer events posted and sign up for Summer nights it the park. Continue to sign up and work out details with popcorn pick up.  We have committed to the Friday Movie Nights, so those nights are a priority.  Hoping to fill the Music in the Park Tuesdays.  June 6th is one of the early unfilled nights.  Kevin will post updates to the website so folks can continue to fill in slots. Phil has the sodas and we will sell for $2 and the water is $1.50. He will pick up the popcorn and we will sell for $3.  Phill will pick up popcorn as it is needed. 

Maple Hill Check update, Phil? We got a thank you from Maple Hill for the $1044.  No word yet on the getting back the previous $500 check.  

Viking Gym update, Ron / Jim: Viking gym has been ordered and should arrive the end of June and will be assembled by the Schodack employees. Waiting for more information from Ron or Dan Annis.

Membership update, Roberto & Kevin: Hopefully Dan from Casey’s can talk to the group and become a new member in July.  Same Will Potts from Chick Fillet.  Kevin will get Will the application. Phill Kellerman is actively recruiting his old boss to become a member and he will ask her to attend a meeting to reintroduce her.

Dues, Murray, update: Due June 1st to Murray.  Murray has NOT received many dues payments.  Two weeks left.

New Business:  

Rotaract Update:  Becky Raymond gave an update on Rotaract.  The Board met with Becky, John Justino and Debbie Rodriquez .  They went over what was going well and what was not. They enjoyed being involved with community activities such as the Bowling Event.  They are trying to increase their social media presence. What has diminished has been in person attendance.  Because the school is a computer school, many attend via zoom.  They are trying to get alumni involved and will meet again in June. They did award a scholarship of  $200 to one of the members. 

This is an opportunity to learn about the district and the international websites.  No charge but it is in person and on one of our Rotary nights.  Many of us already attended a session tailored for our club.  Thanks to Sue Austin, Whitney Pangburn and Denise Denoto.

Please join the District Training Team on May 25 for an in-person training to help you become more proficient with the tools you use to help manage your club and membership. 


What: ClubRunner/MyRotary Training

When: May 25, 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM

Where: Glenville Senior Citizens Center, 32 Worden Rd, Glenville, NY 12302

Who: All incoming club officers are encouraged to attend, but the training is open to everyone!

Epilepsy Local Chapter: Ray Hannan gave a talk about epilepsy and how it affects many including himself.  The Club had a motion and voted to give the local chapter $200. If members want to personally give more, please contact Ray.

This Week’s Guest Speaker, Dr. Kathy Platoni, Speaking on the Subject the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

This week we return to Moscatiello’s where guest presenter Dr. Kathy Plactoni will be joining us remotely and she will be speaking on the topic of post traumatic stress disorder. The meeting will begin at 6:00pm and as usually if you can not join us in person you can do so remotely using the link posted on our calendar page.

Dinner choices will include Chicken Ceasar Salad, Linguini with Baby Clams in White Wine Sauce, or Penne all Vodka. Looking forward to seeing everyone this Thursday.

Meeting Clipboard 5/11/2023

SRC Rotary Minutes 5/11/2023  Moscatiellos

Members in Attendance: Pat Bailey, Peter Brown, Debbie Brown Dick Drumm, Murray Forth, Ray Hannan, Phil Kellerman, Andy Leyhane, Kevin Leyhane; 

By Zoom:  Charlie Foote, Jim Leyhane, Roberto Martinez

Proxy:  Carol Orvis, Becky Raymond

Guests:  Ed Kellerman and wife, Sarge:  Will Potts

Old Business:

MH check for Iron Giraffe Project:  Phil reports no news, and Murray will check to determine if the check has been cashed.

Scholarship:  Columbia has reported their selection; still waiting to hear from Maple Hill and Rensselaer HS.   Principals from those schools need to sign the grant application to ensure participation in the next round

Slate of Officers 2023-24:  Six specific Board positions are required to apply for Rotary Grants.   Murray Forth moved to accept the following slate, the motion was seconded by Kevin Leyhane, and passed unanimously.

President, Peter Brown; President Elect, Roberto Martinez; Vice President, Jim Leyhane; Secretary, Pat Bailey; Treasurer, Murray Forth; Foundation Chair, Jim Leyhane; Membership, Terry Brewer; Public Relations, Kevin Leyhane

District Grant Updates:  Letters of participation needed from the schools; Slate of Officers posted on Club Runner; and Goals from 2023-24 submitted.  All is in order for the submission deadline.

Gift of Life:  Barrow of Booze drawing is  May 26th and tonight is the deadline for purchasing tickets ($20 or 2 for $30).  The Gift of Life Tournament is scheduled for September 14th.  Details to follow.

Summer Nights in the Park:  Sign up sheets were circulated for both Music in the Park on Tuesdays, and Movie Nights on selected Fridays.  Phil K and Pat B are negotiating with “What’s Popping” to provide popcorn to be sold at all events.  

Summer Calendar Program Update:  With the addition of a visit to the USS Slater, the only date still unfilled is August 31st.    The Slater and Jersey Boys at MacHayden will require advanced sign up.  

Presidential Changeover:  July 6, 2023 at the Browns

Reminder:  Dues are due by June 1st,  $175, or 2 installments

New Business:

Membership update:  Kevin introduced Will Potts, Manager of the soon to be open Chick-fil-A on Rt 4 who will be joining our club.  The new owner of Casey’s Restaurant has expressed interest in becoming  a member as well.

Next Week’s Speaker:  Dr. Kathy Platoni, speaking on PTSD, hosted by Phil Kellerman

Purchase of a new banner for display at events:   The current banner for our club is too big to easily hand on a table or from a canopy.  Pat Bailey moved the club purchase a smaller one and would make those arrangements.  Andy Leyhane seconded the motion, which was approved unanimously.  

Club Assembly:

 Will Potts is from the South, the son of a Baptist Minister.  During college he worked at the local Chick-fil-A and was given the training and experience to “move up the ladder”  One of his mentors was a Rotary member and encouraged Will to consider connecting with Rotary clubs as he moved locations.  Most recently he opened a Buffalo site as interim manager and 5 weeks ago relocated with his wife to this area to open the Chick-fil-A on Route 4 in East Greenbush.  Welcome, Will!!

Phil introduced his older brother Ed and his wife Sarge who live in Gainsville, Florida.  Ed has recently retired as a Professor at the University of Gainsville, and gave an overview of life as a Floridian as well as that of Phil’s older brother

This Week’s Meeting Another General Club Assembly

With Julie Ritchie unable to attend the meeting this Thursday we are switching to another general club assembly to discuss end of the Rotary year projects as well as the summer schedule. I will work to try and schedule another guest speaker for May 25th which was also scheduled to be a general club assembly.

As always we will do our best to provide a hybrid option for our meetings, with the link posted on the calendar page of the website.

Menu choices this week include: Antipasto Salad, Chicken Lemon, Baked Ziti

Looking forward to seeing everyone again this Thursday.

Meeting Clipboard 5/4/23

Southern Rensselaer Rotary Club


May 4, 2023

MEMBERS ATTENDING ( 11 ): Dick Drumm, Debbie Brown, Peter Brown, Jim Leyhane, Roberto Martinez, Andy Leyhane, Murray Forth,  Pat Bailey, Ray Hannan, Terry Brewer and Phil Kellerman. 

By Zoom: 

GUESTS (2) Michael Bennett, Joe Corr

President Elect Peter Brown called the meeting to order.

Theme for the Year: “Growing Fellowship and Service Locally and Globally.” 

Hybrid Meeting:  Please let Kevin Leyhane, Jim Leyhane or Roberto Martinez know if you plan to join the weekly meeting via Zoom.

Proxy Votes:  If unable to attend please submit your proxy votes to President Kevin Leyhane or any board member who will be attending the meeting. Proxy votes can also be submitted using the Remind App. Text to the number 81010.


Website updates: We are still updating club information on MYRotary (International), Club Runner (District),  A Zoon meeting with 3 Rotary District officials; Sue Austin, Denise DiNoto and Marissa and club members; Peter Brown, Roberto M., Jim L. and Pat B. went well and several problems were resolved. Jim stated it was a very helpful session.

Albany Water Project Video Presentation: No change

 Exchange Program: No updates but things are progressing

Gift of Life: The District Rotary is once again offering the barrow of booze raffle. See Jim Leyhane for tickets. Tickets are $20 for one and two for $30. The drawing will be held live on Facebook on May 26th. Proceeds will go to the Gift of Life. Jim reported the deadline is next week. 

Gift of Life 25th Annual Golf Tournament: Will be held Thursday, September 14, 2023.  The brochure and link to register can be found on a post on our website.

Student Scholarship Update:  Per Terry Brewer, Columbia High School has selected a student. Maple Hill and Rensselaer will send in their nominations. The student recipients, one parent and a school administrator are invited to attend the Club meeting on June 8th. He repeated that things are moving forward.

Music in the Park:  There are four Movie Nights in the Park scheduled to be held on Fridays. We are approved by the town to do both the Music in the Park and the Movie Nite. We will be selling popcorn and soda and possibly penny candy. Signup sheets are being circulated. We all need to participate. Please check the schedule for spots still open. 

Dues: A reminder from our Treasurer, Murray Forth, that our yearly membership dues of $175.00 should be paid by June 1st or you can opt to make two payments of $87.50 each.

Summer Program: Schedule is now updated and available and will be posted and updated to calendar on our website. Slater visit was discussed as an outing for this summer. Kids would be welcome date is tentative August 10, 2023. 

New Member: Top Form is now a corporate member. 

Presidential Changeover: Will be held on July 6, 2023 at Peter and Debbie Browns house. 

Officers for the coming year: Peter invited all to volunteerNew jobs include Public Relations as well as President Elect.  Next week we will vote on this next week.. 

Next Meeting: Thursday, May 11, 2023 dinner at 6:00 pm at Moscatiello’s Italian Family Restaurant, Route 4, North Greenbush. Also, you can join the by Zoom using the link on the websites calendar page. 

Speaker: Mike Bennett Superintendent 

Terry introduced Mike Bennett and explained about the shooting at Columbia H.S. 19 years ago.  He spoke about the recovery efforts after the event on Feb. 9, 2004.  Also that John Romano, the shooter, has been released from prison. The incident took just 8 minutes, but everything changed!

Mike explained he is now Superintendent at Greenville CSD . Before that he was at several other schools as both teacher and principal. 

How do you recover from such an occurrence? 

It started as a normal day at Columbia High School, but during the 5th period he heard a noise and another one and he and John Sawchuck went out into the hall. John approached the shooter and tried to grab him, the gun discharged and Mike was shot in the leg. John had disarmed the shooter.  Police arrived quickly and two nurses on staff treated Mike’s before he was transported to the hospital. 

After treatment Mike was not able to return home due to media attention. His photo on the stretcher was on all the news stations constantly, life had change forever.. School resumed the next day for staff and students, but he was advised not to return to school right away and especially not until after the Grand Jury met.  Going forward; sounds like doors slamming and other loud noises had an effect on him and he had difficulty retuning to the school. Then 2014 Sandy Hook happened and it also had repercussions. 2018 another school shooting happened. Each event took a toll. Also Mike had become an interim building supervisor and then Principal. With time kids began to become involved asking for changes.  Mike has also written an article about the experience. 

NASSP (National Association of School Principals) invited him to become involved. People involved in school shootings all around the country and 13 originally met outside Washington DC. He was in a room of people that understood the experience, but he was the only one who was shot! 

Mike decided he needed to be part of an advocacy group as well as helping to support to others.  He has had an annual trip to DC to promote and plan and the reception has been good. They have developed a program of Best Practices for school shootings including a Guide to Recovery. He spoke about what is in the guide. Section 1 is about securing support and responding to officers, Section II includes reopening the school, Section III is dealing with the kids and staff and attending student’s ongoing needs, Section IV is Holding Commemorations and annual Remembrances, and Section V is listening to students.  The guide includes testimonials from others who have experienced this or something similar.  He explained how he hopes to continue to address the problem. 

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Terry also spoke about his experiences and perspective. 

Mike and Terry responded to questions.   

Menu next week: Antipasto Salad, Chicken Limon (Lemon) and Baked Ziti

Adjourned 7:45

This Week’s Guest Speaker Michael Bennett, “A Guide to Recovery to a School Shooting”

Please join us this week at Moscatiello’s at 6:00 pm on Thursday May 4, 2023 to hear former East Greenbush Teacher a current Greenville Central School District Superintendent Michael Bennett. Michael will be speaking on “A Guide to Recovery to a School Shooting”

As always if you are unable to join us in person you can still view the meeting remotely using the Zoom link posted on the Calendar page.

Menu choices for this week include: Rustica Salad with Chicken, Chicken Marsala, or Manicotti.

This Week’s Speaker, Denise DiNoto, Rotary District 7190 Governor

This Thursday, April 27, 2023 join us at Moscatiello’s at 6:00pm where we will be joined by Rotary District Governor 7190 Denise DiNoto and Assistant District Governor Marissa Multari. Denise and Marissa will be speaking about Rotary District 7190 and the future merger of Rotary districts to create a CNY Rotary District. If you can not join us in person you can join us via Zoom using the link on the calendar page.

Dinner choices will include Chicken Ceasar Salad, Chicken Florentine, or Portobello Ravioli.