Rotary Club
Of East Hartford
  High Gear

Volume 2 | Issue 34


It was a sunny and unseasonably warm day at the Ridge with temperatures approaching 70. Mary and Jack Martin were in their usual places checking people in and selling raffle tickets. Sgt. At Arms Marc Glass was strategically positioned in the meeting room doorway, shaking down every attendee for donations. He did so well that he passed on announcing them during the meeting due to time constraints. This scribe is hoping his donation for good penmanship was effective.

Happy 90th Birthday to Us

President Dave rang the bell and we sang the rotary song, pledged allegiance and Bill Saunders gave us our invocation. The East Hartford Rotary Club’s 90th anniversary is on Feb 23rd. Steve Jacoby brought a cake and we all sang Happy Birthday. We then lined up for our lunch. Now this scribe has been known to complain about the food presented by our caterer from time to time, and this week was no different. Specifically, why can’t we have lunches like this every week! We were treated to delicious chicken and beef dishes, roasted potatoes and broccoli, plus salad of course. Dessert was ice cream on top of our birthday cake.


After lunch President Dave rang the bell to start the meeting and we began with the introduction of guests. We had two potential new members today, Jim Tucker head of Gengras Cheverolet dealership in East Hartford, and Jairo Lemos a local volunteer for the Connecticut Association of Human Services. Also gracing us with her presence was Chickie Amberg. After the welcome song President Dave noted that one of our song leaders was absent. Art Bradbury has a little pneumonia, and so was absent. Let’s hope he is better soon.


Eagle-Glass Finds Winning An Adjustment

Marc Glass was called upon to give the Sgt. at Arms report. He needed to announce

that he paid $5 for the Eagles still being Super Bowl Champs. Such a devoted fan of his football team might be expected to make such a donation each week, perhaps incrementing the amount by a dollar, until they are unseated.  I guess we will find out just how devoted Marc is to his team over the next couple weeks.


Other donations (that could be deciphered) included:

·         Bob Buettner - $5 on WFSB

·         Dave Amberg - $18 for a birthday, and $2 for the club’s birthday

·         Jack Martin - for having met a 100 year old woman who is sharper than he is

·         Mary Martin – leaving early

·         Dick McCarthy - $50 for a birthday and $15 for an anniversary

·         Bill Saunders - $4 for an unrecorded reason

·         George Schoen – for the latest Red Sox slugger

·         Steve Jacoby – for the beautiful day

·         Dan Russell – for not bringing back good weather from FL

·         Nick Cecere – donated $2 for something and $1 for something else

·         Ned Lynch - paid for the Red Sox and for leaving early

·         Larry Hangland – paid for nothing just in case he does something

·         Neil Cunningham – paid

·         Wes Willett – paid because Marc was still celebrating the Eagles, and again for good Sgt. At Arms penmanship

·      (Unfortunately the penmanship did not improve at this point)

·         Somebody – paid for taking time to be something

·         Frank Collins – paid for a birthday

·         Kevin Kickery – paid for having his Dad back home

·         Jack Sayre – paid for the Red Sox

·         Jim Watts – contributed for something

·         Dan Larson – paid for leaving early

·         George Agnelli – paid for something

·         Alex Wisz – paid for something

·         Anwar Hossain – paid for the good weather

·         Hope Firestone – paid because it is almost spring


Announcements included a board meeting Monday night at the Y. The board will be discussing what to do with all the ducks we have. If anyone wants to contribute ideas, please let a board member know.


On Feb 28 we will be hosting the district governor as our speaker. People might want to dress up a little. (The scribe did not take this personally. He shows up in his work attire each week. Guess it’s not a dress down day next Wed).


Hope Firestone announced that we will be having our annual Mystery Ride this year either in late May or Early June. Cost will be $75 and will include transportation, an activity and food. Guaranteed to be even better than last year!


Alex Wisz encouraged people to sign up for Job Shadowing. Members had several questions that Alex will follow up on. Each table had a balloon today, and Steve Jacoby announced that the person at each table with the next birthday got to take the balloon home.


President Dave gave a brief history of the East Hartford Rotary Club. The club was chartered on Feb 23, 1928, at which time there were approximately 2700 clubs in existence spanning 47 countries. Club meeting were originally held at the Congregational Church, and were then moved to the “new” Sunset Ridge Country Club in 1931. The meeting locations changed several more times over the years, eventually landing back at the Ridge.

Human Trafficking Right Here in River City

Neil Cunningham picked Hope Firestone’s raffle ticket, which her husband promptly returned to her so she could accept her winnings. We were then introduced to our speaker.


Jillian Gilchrist is the head of the Connecticut Trafficking in Persons Council. The council was created by the General Assembly to make policy recommendations to address human trafficking in Connecticut. There is a lot more of this activity in our state than most people realize. We learned that there is quite a bit of human trafficking taking place in nail salons.


Connecticut is a hotbed for human trafficking because it is the only state that does not license nail technicians. We also have human trafficking taking place at illicit massage businesses throughout the state, with East Hartford having more than one of these establishments. Human trafficking is also taking place among construction workers, landscaping, and domestic workers. The casinos have both sex trafficking and labor trafficking taking place. We were encouraged to call the authorities if we suspect human trafficking might be going on.


That’s all for today. - Wes

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