Calendar of Events

Join Us As We Welcome Rita Reagin

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 

Lunch begins at Noon - Meeting begins at 12:30 pm

Meet Rita Reagin

Extended family, education, civil rights, youth programs, and politics have dominated her life. After teaching soldiers in Germany, Rita Reagin may have been the first white teacher to integrate a Broward County School in1964. She taught at Lanier Jr. High until moving to Duval County in1967, where again she chose to teach in black schools prior to integration. Rita worked as a teacher and district administrator for thirty years.

In 1992, her husband was elected to the City Council; he helped write the ordinance creating Springfield Historic District, a very transitional neighborhood. Historic preservation converged with her other interests. Rita started the process of rehabbing a condemned house and dived into community revitalization activities. In 1993, she solicited the donation of a derelict Main St. building and began writing grants for Springfield Preservation and Restoration (SPAR). When the organization suddenly lost its officers and staff in 1995, just as grants for affordable housing, building renovation, and museum grants were awarded to SPAR, Rita became president and helped rebuild the organization. After retirement in 1997, she served as full-time, pro bono director for the next three years, establishing a community development center and the Heritage Education Center. Until the museum was forced to close in 2007, she served as curator.

Meanwhile, living across from the site of the former Klutho Silent Film Studio, and working to save the beautiful apartment building that had housed his actors, kindled Rita's interest in Jacksonville’s heyday as the Silent Film Winter Capital. In 1995, she discovered that Richard Norman’s moviemaking career had begun just two blocks from her house. Since then, Rita has been deeply involved in preserving the Norman Silent Film Studios in Arlington, as well as the history of silent filmmaking in Jacksonville. Family and health issues have force her to focus on two main goals: preserving and sharing Springfield's evolving history via a Virtual Museum and getting Norman Studios designated a National Park. 

Blood Drive 
We need everyone to sign up for the October 11 "roll-up your sleeve day". 
The Blood Alliance provides a safe and adequate blood supply to the regions it serves and is a member of America's Blood Centers-a national network of independent community blood centers responsible for nearly half of the nation's blood supply.

October Rotary Literacy Project Begins! 

Our club is working with Books A Go Go, an internationally recognized Jacksonville organization.  Books a Go Go places in the hands of disadvantaged children their very first book, thus personalizing and empowering the child’s quest to learn to read.  We will be aiding this highly successful program by donating children’s books or monetary gifts (which can be billed to your account).  New or gently used books are welcome.  A box for donations will be near the entrance to our meeting area each Tuesday in October, beginning with this week’s meeting!  

Wally McCullough reports that Mt Cornelia @ 65 feet is reputed to be the highest point on the east coast south of Nprth Carolina.  It is on Ft George Island. He believes Kitty Hawk is the point in North Carolina that is higher. 

Checking In
Stephen Walsh has settled in Greenville, NC, and misses everyone very much (he moved away from Jacksonville when his wife, pediatric surgeon Danielle, accepted a position there).  He had dinner as a guest at his first Rotary meeting in Greenville.
According to Stephen: "The interesting part is the meeting was held in their own building.  The club was formed in 1919 and the building was built in 1920 (the first of its kind in the world  - see picture ).  It has a kitchen but they bring in catered food.  As you would expect of Rotarians, they were all very friendly and had a great sense of humor.  They also sing!  But it’s a different song each meeting selected from their Rotary song book.   
We miss Stephen, and wish him well (we also miss those fabulous Ribs he organized for us as a fundraiser for Haiti a few months ago!)  If you would like to get in touch with Stephen, President Odette has his contact information.  

Last Week... 


Meet Park Ranger Craig Morris, District Interpretive Ranger

Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Lunch begins at Noon - Meeting begins at 12:30 pm

Please Welcome Craig Morris
Special Use Permits, Volunteers, Historic Weapons
Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve
U.S. National Park Service

Craig is a native of Jacksonville who  attended Terry Parker High School. He earned his BS in Botany at the University of Florida and a BA in History at UNF.

His service as a National Park Service Ranger started in 1987 and through the present he has been stationed at Ft. Caroline National Memorial/Timucuan Preserve.

He is the lead park ranger of Interpretation and Visitor Services. He oversees special use permits and is historic weapons supervisor in which the use of historic weapons reproductions, such as blank muskets and cannon firing, are used for educational programs.

He first met Mr. Willie Browne, who donated all his land to The Nature Conservancy, when Craig was a nine-year-old boy.

Sept 13, we inducted our two newest members, Lauren Hopkins and Chris Bouton.  PP James Chansler gave the charge and sponsor, Bob Massey looked on.

Lauren and her husband, James have been married for four years; they met through Rotaract. Their son, Ben is 21 months old and Baby Luke is due at the end of October. 
Lauren has worked at Dreams Come True for four years. As the Associate Director, her main responsibilities are fundraising, grant writing and assisting the Executive Director with programs and management.

Chris has over 20 years’ experience in commercial lending banking and currently works for Ameris Bank at the San Jose Blvd Office as Vice President and Commercial Loan Officer.
Chris moved to Jacksonville 4 years ago from her home town of Salisbury, Maryland when husband George accepted promotion with International Paper Co. here in Jacksonville.
While living in Salisbury, she was a member of the Rotary Club of Wicomico County, District 7630 where she served as Membership Chair.  She was voted Rotarian of the Year in 2006 for managing the Main Fund Raiser “Pirates of the Caribbean” raising a net profit $68,000 for local charities and holding a membership campaign which brought in 21 new members. 
Chris has 3 children; a daughter, Mandy who is 24 years old and two sons in college; Shawn, 23 in Grad school at Salisbury University in Maryland and Mike, 21 who is a senior this year at Flagler College in St Augustine.
In her spare time, Chris enjoys painting and she is also trying to learn how to play the piano.  She looks forward to serving Rotary again.

Ed Morales' table is always fun!

Doug Johnson introduced his son, Mike

It's back-to-school for Rotary Youth Exchange, as we recruit candidates for the Long-Term Outbound class of 2012-13, and Short-Term exchange students for the Summer of '12!!
We could use your help in the following ways:
  • Help spread the word to young people and their parents.  The Long-Term Program is seeking a select few teens who have what it takes to become cultural ambassadors in other countries.  The Short-Term Program offers an opportunity for those unable or unwilling to make a year-long commitment, but still want to explore other lands, other cultures.  We will distribute fliers during our high school presentations, and if you can join us, we would welcome the company.  If you cannot visit an area high school, please make sure your Club members, neighbors, relatives and faith community members know that Rotary offers these programs.
  • Join us as we interview and select candidates for the Long-Term Program.  We need Rotarians who can help with in-home interviews as well as the Interview Weekend in November.  A couple of hours of your time can change a young person's life -- now that's Service Above Self!
    • The Interview Weekend is a great opportunity for potential Youth Exchange Rotarian volunteers: Neophytes, Red Badge's, Rotary partners, Rotaract members, and even host/outbound parents (we call them potential Club members).  We will meet on Veterans Day Weekend (November 11-13) at the St Johns River State College campus in St Augustine.  Depending on how many applications we receive, we are planning a full day of interviews on Saturday and Sunday, November 12 - 13; and perhaps a few hours on Friday, November 11.  We need at least 15 interviewers for the panels who meet with the candidates and their parents for each 3-hour session.  Please contact either Paula Roderick or Bill Learn ( for more information or to sign up.
District 6970 has the best exchange program, hands down!  Join the best team anywhere to help ensure we send our brightest and best "citizen diplomats" around the world!
Members of the Arlington United Methodist Church and their community partner, Arlington Elementary School, want to thank the Rotary Club of South Jacksonville for their generous grant.  These funds were used to purchase almost 50 bean bag chairs to encourage reading by the children during their quiet times in the classroom.   Reading is a major emphasis at Arlington Elementary School with time spent every day encouraging children to learn to enjoy reading on their own.  Pictured here are volunteers from the church transporting the bean bag chairs to the school.  


Blood Drive October 11-Sign Up Today
The Blood Alliance (TBA) provides blood to more than 40 hospitals and medical facilities in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina.

It provides a safe and adequate blood supply to the regions it serves and is a member of America’s Blood Centers – a national network of independent community blood centers responsible for nearly half of the nation’s blood supply.

TBA has been enriching lives since 1942 and is a non-profit community blood center licensed by the FDA and accredited by the AABB.

Rotary Literacy Project - October

Our club is working with Books A Go Go, an internationally recognized Jacksonville organization.  Books a Go Go places in the hands of disadvantaged children their very first book, thus personalizing and empowering the child’s quest to learn to read.  We will be aiding this highly successful program by donating children’s books or monetary gifts.  New or gently used books are welcome.  A box for donations will be near the entrance to our meeting area each Tuesday in October.  

“Importance of the Theodore Roosevelt Preserve to Jacksonville”

Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Lunch begins at Noon - Meeting begins at 12:30 pm

Bill Goodyear grew up in Jacksonville, attended duPont High School and Jacksonville Junior College before entering the Air Force Academy, where he was a member of the second class to graduate in 1960.   

He served in the Air Force for 24 years, retiring as a colonel.  He flew B-52s in Vietnam and later served as aide-de-camp to the Commander of Seventh Air Force in Saigon. 

After his service in the Air Force, Bill was employed by Northrop Grumman as the director of business development for the B-2 Stealth Bomber program.  It was in this capacity that he spoke to the Southside Rotary in October of 1996 before a B-2 was named the “Spirit of Florida.”

During high school he often visited St. Johns Bluff and the home of Willie Browne, who then owned the land now included in the Theodore Roosevelt Preserve, which is the subject of today’s presentation.

These are the three main points that will be discussed during today's presentation:      
1)  Circumstances surrounding the creation of the Theodore Roosevelt Preserve in 1969.      
 2)  Selected stories about the life of William H. Browne, III, who owned the land in the Theodore Roosevelt Preserve for the previous sixty-four years. 
3)  Brief account of the sixteenth century French and Spanish occupation of the land now part of the Theodore Roosevelt Preserve.

 Blood Drive Coming Soon

 Our next blood drive is all set to be held on October 11, so be sure to sign up and get the time convenient for you.  Sign up sheets will be on the tables at lunch each week.

Thanks in advance for your participation in this community event!

Last Week At A Glance

PP Robert Harris led the pledge and prayer and Charles Hyatt gave the introductions and led the welcome song. Visiting Rotarians included Anne Renfroe from the Downtown club; Guests included Doug Johnson's son Mike; Martha Bogdan brought Shirley Westrak.

We also welcomed two new members, Chris Bouton with AmerisBank and Lauren Hopkins with Dreams Come True.  We are pleased to have these two new members.  Be sure to stop by and say hello at the door for the next few weeks.

News From Rotary International
Rotary International has prepared a video that is posted on the Rotary website featuring the role that the New York City Rotary Club played during the aftermath of 9-11.  Sandra Kessler, who is the Interim CEO of the American Lung Association of New York, was contacted by Rotary International for information on services provided by the American Lung Association while working closely with the New York City Rotary Club.  The video can be viewed on Rotary’s website at, an interesting recap of Rotary’s 9-11 involvement along with other community organizations.


Tuesday, September 13, 2011
Lunch begins at Noon - Meeting begins at 12:30 pm


As a state licensed and LEED certified interior designer, Ms. Beveridge has practiced in the field for over 35 years, twenty of those years as founder/president of PeopleSpace, Inc., an interior design firm with numerous signature projects for major corporations and financial institutions to its credit. After merging the firm into Gresham, Smith and Partners, a regional architecture, engineering and interior design firm, she helped GS&P expand its market share in the commercial design field, put a capable design team in place, and then left to pursue new interests. She now works as an artist and independent interior design consultant on selected projects.


By reducing her workload in the design field, Ms. Beveridge was able to devote the time to develop her skills as a fine craft artist. Combining her background in design, drawing and woodworking, she uses the hardshell gourd as the anchor form to create her three-dimensional mixed media works.

Since her first juried show in 2000, Ms. Beveridge has participated in numerous juried & invitational shows and exhibitions throughout the nation. She has received several awards and one Best of Show, and was awarded an Art Ventures grant from Community Foundation at Jacksonville. Most recently, her work was included in the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens’ Art Ventures 20 Year Retrospective exhibition.

Volunteer Activities

Presently, Ms. Beveridge serves on the Board of the Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens and as co-chair of the Arboretum’s 2012 Plein Air Painting Event ‘A Brush with Nature’.

She also serves on the Art & Soul Gallery committee of the Women’s Center of Jacksonville.

Ms. Beveridge has also been a docent at MOCA Jacksonville, an interviewer for the Veterans History Project and a long-term care ombudsman for the State of Florida.

The Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens is one of Jacksonville's hidden treasures. For years, the property, owned by the city, went unused except as a buffer for a water reclamation facility on Millcoe Road off Monument Road near the Florida 9A overpass.

The 120 acres that make up the Arboretum were owned from 1941 to 1961 by the Humphries Gold Mining Co., which strip-mined the area for zircon and other minerals used to make titanium.

When the mining operation ended, what was left behind were rolling sand dunes.

For the next half-century the land was mostly left alone, except for the occasional invader who came to dump trash there.

That gave the site the chance to revert to a natural state, one that encompasses 13 distinct ecosystems. As a result, "the landscape within the arboretum contains almost all the natural beauty the First Coast offers in one location, from marshes to xeric rosemary scrub uplands," said Rachel Sulkers, a senior scientist with Environmental Services Inc., who serves on the arboretum's board and leads guided tours there.

A non-profit board was established and leased the land from the city in 2006 with the idea of creating an arboretum. Volunteers went to work, cleaning up the garbage that had been dumped and creating six trails through the grounds. Those trails range from 800 feet to one mile.

The arboretum is now open to the public at no charge during daylight hours seven days a week. Dogs are allowed as long as they are kept on a leash.

Members In The News

The Ferrari GTO will be featured at the 2012 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, scheduled for March 9-11 on the 10th and 18th fairways of the Golf Club of Amelia Island at Summer Beach adjacent to the Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island.“We’ve had Ferrari GTOs on the show field before, but what we have planned for 2012 should astonish even the most devoted Ferrari aficionado,” says Bill Warner, Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance Founder and Chairman.

Martha Barrett and W.C. Gentry spoke highly of School Superintendent, Ed Pratt-Dannals, saying he was the right leader going forward and Barrett adding the county is “fortunate to have him.”
September 6, 2011

The first Labor Day in the United States was observed on September 5, 1882, by the Central Labor Union of New York. It became a federal holiday in 1894, when, following the deaths of a number of workers at the hands of the U.S. military and U.S. Marshals during the Pullman Strike, President Grover Cleveland put reconciliation with the labor movement as a top political priority. Fearing further conflict, legislation making Labor Day a national holiday was rushed through Congress unanimously and signed into law a mere six days after the end of the strike.

The September date originally chosen by the CLU of New York and observed by many of the nation's trade unions for the past several years was selected rather than the more widespread International Workers' Day because Cleveland was concerned that observance of the latter would stir up negative emotions linked to the Haymarket Affair, which it had been observed to commemorate. All U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and the territories have made it a statutory holiday.

Members In The News Once they were colleagues, he as owner and she as CEO of Solantic Walk-In Urgent Care, the multi-million-dollar clinic chain.
On Tuesday, Rick Scott and Karen Bowling, were brought together again, this time as a pair of public officials as the state’s Republican governor named his former top administrator to the board of trustees at Florida State College in Jacksonville. Congratulations Karen!

The 4th Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission sent six names to Gov. Rick Scott to fill an opening created by the upcoming Dec. 31 retirement of Circuit Judge Haldane Taylor. Among the names, our own Judge, Tyrie Boyer.

Republican Party of Florida Chairman Dave Bitner's decision to step down for health reasons was accepted with regret by party leaders. Now he wants them to ratify his choice for successor. The chairman recommended to members of the Republican Executive Committee that they elect Vice Chairman Lenny Curry to succeed him as chairman.  

Martha Bogdan
and P Odette joined the San Marco Rotary Club for a night of fellowship learning how to cook at the Publix Apron Cooking School! Thankfully, nothing was overcooked!!

Last Week At A Glance