Spoke Newsletter – 04/10/2014

Spoke Newsletter – 04/10/2014

Here to give the Club both an academic and personal per- spective on the events unfolding in Ukraine is Ukraine na- tive NATALIA CHERKAS. A professor at University of Redlands School of Business this year as a Fulbright Scholar, her dissertation was titled “Macroeconomic Promotion of Manufactured Exports in Ukraine.” She is teaching one or two courses each semester at the School of Business. She is from Lviv, in western Ukraine — the part of Ukraine that doesn’t like the Russians and wants to join the EU. Joining her is GERALD GROSHEK, a Professor at the School of Business, and a former Fulbright Scholar himself. He has spent a lot of time in Ukraine, and on at least two occasions has brought Ukrainian teachers to University of Redlands for summer workshops. They will together discuss the Ukrainian crisis and Russia’s heavy-handed role.

KYRA STEWART, the new Executive Director of Family Service Association of Redlands, talked to the Club about the important role that FSA plays in helping those less for- tunate in our city. Did you know that FSA assisted more than 1,500 families in 2013, and more than 5,000 individ- uals?

Continuing the theme of current events, Professor GRAEME AUTON will talk to the class about Russia, adding more context to our understanding of the global sit- uation.

How is it that at the Club meeting last week we failed to acknowledge the Club’s 94th anniversary? There is some- thing altogether fitting and proper that the Rotary Club of Redlands was founded April 1, 1920 – do you suppose all of those April fools so long ago knew what they were getting us into?

There is no truth to the rumor that Prez-Elect JIM NOLIN is the new unofficial mayor of Darby’s in downtown Red- lands, although he was seen holding court there last Satur- day evening – no doubt exhausted from the many miles he spent on his bicycle running the track at the Redlands Bicycle Classic.

Where’s BILL HATFIELD this week? Could it be that “happy days are here again” at General Motors, and that one of those meetings that GM sponsors for the whole family might be taking place on Maui, Hawai‘i? You may have no- ticed that these meetings never seem to happen in De- troit….

Do you know of a Rotarian who is ill or missing meetings and needs some encouragement from the Club? If so, we’ve streamlined the process. Simply send an email to we- care@redlandsrotary.org. Please, help us look out for our membership!

“Eulogy to a Drone, Part 1”
In January I took my prized drone to an open, grassy area of Loma Linda University’s campus for a flight. It had been a stressful day and watching the drone zip back and forth would be very relaxing. I had upgraded the drone with car- bon fiber props, fastened with a nut on each prop. On a pre- vious flight I had heard a strange vibration and discovered one of the fasteners had come loose. I carefully secured them with blue lock tight. It seemed to be holding just fine. Prior to lift-off, I checked the tension on the prop fasteners. Then I did the traditional pre-flight checks of calibrating the compass and verifying GPS reception.

The drone fired up, lifted off, and I was in my element look- ing at our campus from 100 feet in the air (via an onboard camera and video downlink to my cell phone). A gentleman approached and asked about the drone, marveling at its speed and agility. We talked at length as I brought it down to 70 feet of altitude. It was hovering perfectly, when I heard a distinct “ting”, and watched in horror as one prop flew off. The drone cork-screwed straight down into the turf with a thud! I rush over to it, picked it up and inspected the dam- age. The upper and lower shell were cracked and one motor had dirt packed into it.

The next day I packed the drone up in a sturdy box and mailed it to a drone repair company near LA. One week later it was returned in perfect cosmetic condition. And I was lighter in the wallet by a couple of Benjamin Franklins. Next week the eulogy continues…

April 10, 2014 No. 35 Editor: Nathan D. Gonzales

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