Calendar of Events

March 4, 2014

Lunch begins at noon - Meeting begins at 12:30 p.m.

Meet Jamey Peacock
Director of Customer Development, TMM Inc.

Jamey has been working in the transportation logistics / supply chain management industry for 20 years, along with launching a couple of small business start-ups in the retail world.  He spent ten years with the nation’s largest third party logistics company, C.H. Robinson Worldwide (CHRW), before joining the TMM team at the end of 2010.  Jamey’s principal roles prior to his move were Business Development Manager, Sales and Marketing Manager, and Senior Sales Executive.  He was also a member of CHRW’s National United Sales Team.  Jamey has experience in developing and expanding modal divisions that broaden capabilities and services to better benefit clients.  His strength lies in increasing and growing customer bases, while at the same time training and motivating his team.  Two important aspects of his life are his faith in God and his family.  He currently serves as the Executive Level Adviser for the TMM Cares Club and is an adviser to the Board of Directors for Harvest Time International in Sanford FL.  Jamey has a passion for leadership, less fortunate children, fatherless boys, and his country.

Jamey is married to his bride of eight years, Sheena.  They have six children,  Alena (eight-year-old adopted daughter), David (four-year-old son), Benaiah (two-year-old son), Reece (twelve-year-old legal guardian of) and Tony (six-year-old legal guardian of).  The family also has 2 pets,  a dog, Montana and a cat, Dakota.

Happy Birthday Rotary

Rotary celebrated a Birthday on February 23, 2014.  For more information use the following link:

Minutarian update, Week 35
Rotarians of 6970,

February 23rd, is an anniversary. On that day, 108 years ago, Paul Harris, Gustavus Loehr, Silvester Schiele and Hiram E. Shorey gathered in Loehr’s office for what became known as the first Rotary meeting. Celebrate Rotary!

Our clubs have been doing great with their polio commitments. The US Government has joined the fight again this year providing $205 million to the Centers for Disease Control, in January.

Last week I mentioned it was the fundraising time of year in Rotary. Gingie and I were blessed to be invited, and witness what I suspect will total well over $100 thousand in funds for great things in our communities. The events included: Daytona Beach West Stock Car Hall of Fame, Palatka Sunrise Wild Game Feast, Jacksonville Riverside first ever Riverside Craft Beer Festival, and an all Marion County Club effort with their Ocala Discovery Fest. WOW!

Just a reminder, keep those awards applications coming in!
Have a Great Week, and thanks for all you do!

Engage Rotary, Change Lives

District Governor Art

February 25, 2014

We meet at River City Brewing Company
Lunch opens at noon - Meeting begins at 12:30pm
Dr. Nikolai Vitti, Duval County School Superintendent

Dr. Nikolai P. Vitti was selected as Superintendent of Duval County Public Schools (DCPS), the 20th largest district in the country, in September of 2012. Dr. Vitti and the School Board initiated a new strategic plan focusing on developing great educators and leaders; ensuring an equitable and efficient use of resources; engaging parents, caregivers, and the community; and developing the whole child. 
Using the new Strategic Plan as a guidepost, Dr. Vitti developed a School Allocation Plan that equally distributed resources across over 160 schools, passed a $1.7 billion dollar budget, and completed a reorganization of the District Office shifting resources to schools, including the expansion of music an art programs at each elementary and middle school.  

The 2013-14 school year brought about new programs and resources including:
•    Overage centers to assist students who are more than two years out of their age cohort and the   GRASP Academies focusing on dyslexic students.  
•    Reading Coaches were placed in all schools and math coaches were allocated to lower performing schools. 
•    Successful legislative lobbying led to a hybrid high school diploma that aligns to the District’s goal of preparing students for college and the workforce. 
•    Career Academies, culminating in Advanced Placement, Industry Certification Exams, and Dual Enrollment Courses have been expanded and internship opportunities have been increased.  This was made possible through the expansion of the secondary schedule to incorporate eight periods in all middle and high schools to offer additional elective classes to all students.
•    A revamped curriculum and assessment team developed new Curriculum Guides for all courses along with assessments directly aligned to the Guides. This was completed with teachers. 
•    A Teacher and Coach Academy were offered to build the bench of future leaders as well as to train teachers on inquiry based instruction rather than teaching to the test.
•    An agreement was made with the Teachers Union implementing Common Planning in all secondary schools which allows for job embedded professional development as well as the opportunity to share best practices. 
•    Another major initiative was the creation of the Parent Academy which offers courses throughout the county to assist parents to advocate for their children academically, become better parents, and build personal and job skills. 
•    In less than a year, Dr. Vitti has worked with the city’s leading educational philanthropists to raise over $35 million dollars through the Quality Education for All fund to focus on recruiting and developing human capital.

Prior to being named Superintendent of Duval County, Dr. Vitti was the Chief Academic Officer of Miami-Dade County Public Schools (M-DCPS) which won the Broad Prize for Excellence in Urban Excellence in 2013.  As the Chief Academic Officer, he led the 66 lowest-performing schools in the county while also driving the work of Language Arts/Reading, Math, Science, Social Studies, Career and Technical Education, Early Childhood Education/Head Start, School Improvement, Title I, HIPPY, Title II and Summer Programs district-wide for over 320 schools.  

Prior to serving as the district’s Chief Academic Officer, Dr. Vitti was the Assistant Superintendent of the Education Transformation Office (ETO) where he autonomously led a region of 26 schools identified as “persistently lowest-achieving” by the USDOE/FLDOE. Under his leadership, the 26 ETO schools increased in almost all areas of school accountability and all previously identified Intervene Schools (lowest performing category) improved and avoided sanctions.  In addition, each of the 10 high schools improved their graduation rate by an average of 12 percentage points and participation and performance in Advanced Placement, Dual Enrollment and Industry Certification courses significantly increased through an emphasis on infusing a college-going culture in secondary schools.  Under his leadership, ETO was recognized as a model for urban education and turnaround by both the USDOE/FLDOE. 

Before returning to Miami to lead ETO, Dr. Vitti served as Deputy Chancellor of Schools Improvement and Student Achievement at the FLDOE as well as Bureau Chief of School Improvement/Executive Director for Region One/Lead Director for Differentiated Accountability.  In these roles, he led statewide professional development for superintendents, district administrators, principals, and teachers on school improvement initiatives.  He also guided the work of five regional offices that directly served the state’s lowest performing schools and their districts.  He managed the Bureaus of School Improvement, Federal Education Programs, Family and Community Outreach, Federal Programs, Early Learning, Just Read Florida!, and Equal Educational Opportunities.  
Before joining the FLDOE, Dr. Vitti served as principal of Homestead Middle in M-DCPS, where he moved the school from a “D” to a high “B” and improved the school in each accountability area.  Before his appointment as principal, Dr. Vitti joined the cabinet of M-DCPS as the Knowledge Management Officer, where he was responsible for coordinating multiple district-wide initiatives. Prior to working in Miami, Dr. Vitti played an instrumental role in transforming the educational culture of a 4,000 student high school in the Bronx, New York.  Dr. Vitti began his educational career as a teacher at both the high school and middle school level in North Carolina and New York where he notably raised student achievement at each school.

Dr. Vitti received the prestigious Presidential Scholarship from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and was a member of the Urban Superintendent Program, which has developed a number of successful superintendents throughout the country.  In 2012, he completed his doctorate from Harvard in Education, Administration, Planning and Social Policy.  He received his masters in the same field from Harvard.  Dr. Vitti also holds a Master's in Education from Wake Forest University where he was awarded a Master Teacher Fellowship, and a B.A. in History.  As an undergraduate, he earned Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa recognition. 

Dr. Vitti is married with four school-age children who all attend public schools.
Minutarian update, Week 34 
Rotarians of 6970,

The reports are still coming in, but you really made Rotary Has A Heart have a major impact. Our week of food projects was topped off with Fletcher High Interacts fourth Annual Stop Hunger Now event. In all there were about 200 volunteers packing food, enjoying the fellowship and having fun. Interactors from New Smyrna Beach, Palatka, Daytona, Ponte Vedra Beach and Jacksonville along with Rotaractors from the Jacksonville area and Rotarians from all over packed 24,000 meals in less then 2 hours. What a blast, all for a great cause.

It’s fundraiser time! There are wonderful events going on in Ocala, Palatka, Daytona and Jacksonville, and that’s just this week. Check the District Website Calendar for information.
The registration form for District Conference will be available this week on the District Website and from your Club Presidents. Please register early.
And lastly, the first application for the Presidential Citation has been received. Congratulations to Club President Ed Book, and the Rotary Club of Downtown Gainesville! Great job!

Have a Great Week, and thanks for all you do!

Engage Rotary, Change Lives
District Governor Art

Rotary Has Heart - Food Drive

A thank you from Jacob Dobbs: 
First of all, the First Coast Rotaract Club would like to thank the Rotary Club of South Jax for their commitment to this project and to getting their members involved! 

Altogether there were 17 awesome volunteers, 8 of them Rotarians, working shifts from 9 in the morning to 6 in the evening for the Rotary Has Heart Food Drive. We worked very hard soliciting food donations, weighing bags of food, and packing it up for the Children's Home Society in an effort to tackle child hunger here in Jacksonville. Not only did the local community's response exceed expectations, but I'm pretty sure Publix will be coming to us next year to do it again. Pat yourselves on the back - we've raised 2,018 pounds of food!

Photos from the Event

February 18, 2013

We meet at River City Brewing Company
Lunch opens at noon - Meeting begins at 12:30pm

Meet Bill Warner
  Founder and Chairman, The Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance

Bill Warner has been around automobiles his whole life.  As a teenager he worked at the local Volkswagen and imported car dealership in the parts department and driving the delivery truck.  On weekends, he worked as a “gopher” for the dealership racing team and became enthralled with motor racing.  Upon earning his degree in Electrical Engineering, he entered the family filter business and started work on the side for Sports Car Graphic Magazine.  In 1971, he began his relationship with Road & Track Magazine which continues today.  His photographs and writing have appeared in Road & Track, Car and Driver, Autoweek, The Atlantic Monthly, Automobile, Automotor und Sport, Classic & Sportscar, Porsche Panorama, and Forza to mention a few.   His photography has won awards from The Los Angeles Art Directors, the Creative Arts Yearbook, and the Sports Car Club of America (Photographer of the Year 1970).  His photos have been featured in the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles as part of the 50th Anniversary of Ferrari and at the Meadow Brook Concours d’Elegance, in Auburn Hills, Michigan.

In 1975, he teamed with Tom Nehl in a Porsche 911 to finish 14th in the third running of the Cannonball Baker Sea-to-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash (AKA The Cannonball run) and with English racing great, Innes Ireland; Can Am racer, George Drolsom; and sedan racer, Dick Starita, to finish 26th in the inaugural running of the Cannonball One Lap of America.  The One Lap was run in a Hertz-Unlimited Mileage Lincoln Town Car.  Warner started racing in 1978 in a Brabham BT-8 and later in the SCCA in an ex-Bob Sharp Racing Datsun B210.  He finished 5th in the American Road Racing Amateur Championships at Road Atlanta in 1982 in Class GT-3 (having started in 22nd place).  His drive earned him a nomination for the Mark Donohue Award.  In 1984 he entered the International Motorsports Association Firehawk Series in a Camaro and had top ten finishes at St. Louis and Sebring, top five finishes at Watkins Glen (twice), a 3rd at Road America, a 2nd at Lime Rock, Ct., and a win in the Escort Series at Mid Ohio, all in Camaros.  Warner won the IMSA Media Challenge (for racing journalists) in 1984, 1985, and 1986.   He participated as a driver in the SAAB World Speed Record Run at Talladega, Alabama in 1986.  Warner has driven factory sponsored road races for Chevrolet, Oldsmobile, Mercury, and Ford.  He currently races the ex-Bob Tullius, Group 44/ ex-Paul Newman Triumph TR-6 and the ex-Group 44 Triumph TR-8 Trans Am/IMSA car in vintage racing. He has been awarded the Skip Barber Cup (Lime Rock) and the John Kelly Trophy (Mid Ohio) for driving.

In addition to racing, he restores and collects interesting cars.  Currently in his collection are a 1957 Cadillac El Dorado Biarritz, a 1958 Cadillac El Dorado Brougham, a 1972 Ferrari 365GTB/4 “Daytona”, a 1952 Muntz Road Jet, a 1971 Porsche 911T (owned since new), a 1979 Mercedes Benz 450SL (Jane’s car), a 1928 Simplex Piston Ring Special, 1978 Bill Mitchell Special Vehicles Development Oldsmobile Omega, a 1970 Maserati Ghibli Spyder, a 2005 Ford GT, and the two previously mentioned Triumph race cars.  The centerpiece of his collection was Edsel Ford’s 1934 Ford Model 40 Special Speedster which he sold in 2008.  Over the years he has restored a Brabham BT-8 (ex-Denny Hulme, Tourist Trophy winner), an Elva Mk 5, a Lotus 11 LeMans (ex-Innes Ireland), the Lang Cooper (nee Shelby King Cobra), a 1953 Oldsmobile Fiesta (now in the General Motors Heritage Collection),  a 1954 Corvette, and a BMW M-1.

In 1996, he founded The Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance near his home of Jacksonville, Florida.  In the seventeen year history of the show, it has raised over $ 2.25 million dollars for Community Hospice of Northeast Florida, Spina Bifida of Jacksonville, The Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society, and the Shop with Cops Program of Fernandina Beach and Nassau County (FL).  For his charitable work, he was recognized by The Rotary Club of South Jacksonville with the Frank Sherman Award;  The WTLV Channel 12, Twelve Who Care Award;  The National Philanthropic Award as Volunteer of the Year (1998)and the American Institute for Public Service, Jefferson Award.

In 2002, he was recognized by a panel of automotive writers and journalists with the Meguiar’s Automobile Hobby Person of the Year.  The ceremony was held at the Beverly Hills Hotel, Beverly Hills, California, and was nationally televised.  Other recipients of the Meguiar’s Award have been Jay Leno, the late Chip Miller of Carlisle Productions, and Steve Earle of the Monterey Historic Races. 

In 2003, he was inducted into the Road Racing Driver’s Club by British Racing Champion, Brian Redman and Bobby Rahal. 

In September of 2005, Warner was named to the Steering Committee of the LeMay Automotive Museum, Tacoma, Washington. 

In February 2006, The Federacion de Automovilismo de Puerto Rico recognized Bill and Jane for their contribution to the preservation of antique and classic cars. 

In July of 2008, Bill was named one of the “Top 50 Players in the Classic Car World” by Octane Magazine (UK) joining such automotive luminaries at Sir Stirling Moss, Dan Gurney, Jay Leno, Phil Hill and Lord March. 

In October of 2008, Bill was awarded the Lee Iococca Award given as recognition for “Dedication to Excellence in Perpetuating an American Automotive Tradition”.

In August of 2009, Bill was appointed to the Selection Committee of the Monterey Historic Races, Monterey, California. 

In 2011 he was asked to serve on the advisory board of the Friends of Harry Miller. 

In November of 2013, The Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance was awarded “Motoring Event of the Year” by Octane Magazine in ceremonies held at the Saint Pancras Hotel in London.   This award represented world wide recognition of the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance as “Best of the Best”. 

He has served as the Honorary Chief Judge at the Thousand Oaks Concours d’Elegance, Thousand Oaks, California, and Honorary Chairman of the EyesOn Design, Detroit, Michigan (2010).  He has served on judging teams at the Glenmoor Gathering (Ohio), the Radnor Hunt Concours d’Elegance (Philadelphia), The Louis Vuitton Concours, New York City, and the Keels and Wheels Concours d’Elegance (Seabrook, Texas). 

Bill is a recipient of the Air Force Commendation Medal and the Florida Service ribbon and served 30 years in the Florida Air National Guard, retiring at the rank of Major.

His wife of forty-seven years, Jane, has patiently put up with his automotive mania with an understanding beyond reasonable expectations, as have his three children, son, Clay, and twin daughters, Demery Webber and Dana Shewmaker, and granddaughters, Lindsey Jane Webber and Mildred Huxley Warner.

Community Service Opportunity

Join Florida’s First Coast Rotaract in the “Rotary Has Heart” initiative to feed needy children this month!

On Saturday, February 15th, volunteers will be stationed at the Roosevelt Publix grocery store to spread the word about child hunger and accept food donations from customers. All donations will be used to benefit the Children’s Home Society’s effort to support struggling families.

If you would like to contribute a couple hours of your time as a volunteer, contact Rotaractor Jacob Dobbs at Otherwise, all Rotarians are asked to help spread the word to friends and family to come to the Roosevelt Publix for their post-Valentine’s Day grocery shopping! 

Another way to support the First Coast Rotaract "Rotary Has Heart" initiative,
On Tuesday, February 18th, please bring non-perishable items to the meeting.  All donations will be used to benefit the Children's Home Society's effort to support struggling families.

Committee Members Needed
Rotaract Chair Bob Massey is currently a committee of one and is in need of some committee members.  Age is not a factor, obviously, since PP George Linville served and was loved by our Rotaractors for many years.  What is important is enthusiasm and a willingness to share the ideals of Rotary with our young people.  Mostly, Bob wants Rotarians who are willing to attend at least one Rotaract meeting and who are not concerned about being infected by a high level of energy from the experience.  If you are interested, please call Bob on his cell at 904/699-8643904/699-8643.

We Are Passing The Hat For Our Kindergarten Classes!

The Kindergarten Classes at San Jose Elementary learned recently they have to pay for their bus transportation to attend a scheduled field trip to the Jacksonville Zoo.  The Zoo has agreed to host the kids free of charge, but due to funding cuts, the classes have to provide funds for their bus transportation.  The cost is approximately $3.50 per child for a total of about $500.00 for all the kindergarten classes.   
We are “passing the hat” this Tuesday to help fund the transportation for the trip!  You can help by writing a check to the ROTARY CLUB OF SOUTH JACKSONVILLE CHARITY FUND or have Patti add it to your Rotary Bill as a donation.  Just let Patti know how much you want to give!  Any amount is welcome, and all will go to a great cause. 
Let’s get these kids to the Zoo!

Club Fellowship & Social Event, Feb 12th
Yuka's Birthday Celebration!
Evening fellowship and social event to celebrate Yuka’s (our Club's Rotary 
Youth Exchange (RYE) inbound student from Japan) Birthday!! 

Minutarian Update, Week 33

February is World Understanding Month on the Rotary Calendar, and the second week is denoted as Family Week. It is an opportunity for our clubs to connect with families in our communities and more specifically, an opportunity to reach out to families in need. How great that we have so many wonderful activities planned for the week with our Rotary Has A Heart food projects. This week kicks off projects all around the District, too numerous to list in the Rotary Minute. We hope to provide you all with a full accounting and pictures later this month, on the District Website.

Some deadlines are approaching along with great events, please make note:
  • Club award applications are coming due;
  • Continue turning in RYLA club commitment forms;
  • President Elect Training, March 6-8, in Orlando;
  • Rotaract Leadership will spend the 7th & 8th at PETS as well;
  • District Assembly is March 29th, in Palatka;
  • District Conference May 16th, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.

Have a Great Week, and thanks for all you do!