DSV Rotary Meeting Schedule

June 13

  • Speaker – Chris Behring, Rotary International in Melbourne
  • Greeter – Mary O’Donnell
June 20
  • Speaker – TBA
  • Greeter – Jim Vlantis
June 27
  • Speaker – TBA
  • Greeter – Mary Whipple
Meetings every Tuesday, 7:00am
Black Bear Diner
807 Camino Ramon
Danville, CA 95426



May Meeting Highlights

Geoffrey Kasangaki, hailing from Uganda, shared a powerful story with us about Asante Africa. During the world’s longest school lockdown (22 months) caused by Covid-19, 4.5 million students were unable to return to school.

In response, Asante Africa introduced “Community Learning Groups” to provide sustained education outside traditional school settings. Led by local staff, alumni, and community volunteers, these groups taught essential skills like entrepreneurship, leadership, human rights, business planning, health and hygiene, and communication.

Today, even as schools reopen, the Community Learning Groups continue to support out-of-school youth in their transition back to the classroom or into adult life.

Learn more about Asante Africa Foundation at: AsanteAfrica.org


Chris Behring, DSV Rotarian David Behring’s son, presented May 9th about his 543 Mile Hike on the Camino de Santiago Trail in Northern Spain. He started in France in the Pyrenees, walked about 12-18 miles per day, from about 7am – 3pm daily for 35 days. This is a pilgrimage that approximately ½ million people do per year. Chris did this to deepen his Christian Faith. He did this journey solo, although he met many wonderful people along the way.

He stayed in hostiles, ate local delicious meals, hand-washed his clothes along the way, and had to endure blisters and back issues. He learned that your backpack should be only 10% of your body weight. Chris’ backpack weighed 25lbs…Ouch!

The traditional Camino de Santiago hike is 487 Miles, but Chris went an additional 56 miles to the coast at Camino Finestra.

Chris is truly a remarkable young man. His next “journey” will be going back to school to get his master’s degree in education as he hopes to be a guidance counselor helping underserved children in North Carolina.


In a special recognition, Jim Vlantis (left) presented Terry Church with his Polio Plus Pin in honor of his contribution to the Polio Plus program.

Polio, a disease that once plagued humanity, now stands as the second human disease to be eradicated worldwide.

The Polio Plus program, initiated by Rotary International, has been instrumental in this achievement. Through the program, Rotarians in 122 countries have worked tirelessly to vaccinate an astounding 25 billion children, protecting them from the devastating effects of polio.

Together, we are making a lasting impact on global health, bringing us closer to a world free from the threat of polio.

Learn more about Polio Plus at: rotary.org/plus-polioplus

We were thrilled to honor Karen Kolokithas, a dedicated second-grade teacher at John Baldwin Elementary School, for her outstanding commitment to her students. With over 20 years of service, Karen’s unwavering dedication has made a lasting impact. Despite the delay caused by the pandemic, she was unanimously chosen by her fellow teachers and administration to receive this well-deserved award.

Pictured: Daniel Kodam, Joe Romanga, Principal at John Baldwin, Karen Kolokithas, and Terry Church, our incoming President-Elect for our Rotary Club, celebrating this remarkable achievement.


Ken Mintz was a previous board member for the San Ramon Unified School District (SRVUSD), and is now involved in a program called “Access to Excellence.. Success Re-imagined”. Within Contra Costa alone there are 19 different school districts, and within San Ramon Valley Unified School District there are approximately 30,0000 students. 96% of the students graduate, and 95% go on to college. SRVUSD is tied for the top School District in the State!

SRVUSD focus/strategic direction is on the following:

  • Deep Learning, Innovation & Academic Excellence
  • Equity
  • Social & Emotional Well-Being
  • Stewardship of Resources
  • Shared Leadership
  • Culture of Responsiveness

With a budget of $450M it staffs approximately 3,000 employees, of which 85% of the budget goes towards personnel/administration. Sadly, we are one of the lowest-funded School Districts in the State of California. Currently SRVUSD has a declining enrollment. There is a Parcel Tax which is up for renewal which will equate to $144/household within our District.


Congratulations, Jennifer!!




We had a fantastic turnout at the 13th annual Bocce Challenge tournament, with Joe and Jennifer Shuen, Steve and Sandi McKae, Terry and Donna Church, Jack Worthington, and Jim Vlantis representing DSV Rotary. A special mention goes to the Martinez Rotary Club for organizing this event for the past 10 years.

Through the tournament, we raised over $100,000 for polio eradication, which is then generously matched 2:1 by the Gates Foundation. It’s incredible to see the impact we’re making together!

Both of our DSV teams performed exceptionally well, making it to the playoffs. At 2 pm, Jack and Sandi headed to one court while Joe and Jennifer went to another. Surprisingly, our opponents didn’t show up, resulting in automatic victories for our teams.

Although we had the opportunity to advance to the next round, we decided to conclude the day as waiting for another 30 minutes with no guarantee of our next opponent’s arrival seemed impractical. With the temperature reaching 89 degrees, we had already enjoyed a great day of fun and camaraderie. It was a successful day for our two DSV teams, winning all of our games.