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Courtney Hall, CEO, Interfaith Works will be our Guest Speaker at the Rotary Club Meeting on January 21, 2021
Courtney Hall joined Interfaith Works as Chief Executive Officer in November 2020 following 17 years of service in the public and nonprofit sectors. Most recently he has been the Vice President at Housing Up in Washington DC, where he led the provision of affordable housing and supportive services to more than 700 homeless individuals and at-risk households.  Prior to his Housing Up experience, Courtney served as a Child Welfare leader in DC and Alabama. He received his Bachelor of Social Work from Oakwood University in Alabama, a Master of Social Work from The University of Alabama, and holds a Nonprofit Management Executive Certificate from Georgetown University.
2020 Donations from the Potomac-Bethesda Rotary Club
Fellow PB Rotarians:  Once again our Club has been very generous and has donated $200 to Rotary International for each active member.  You should be receiving a recognition of your gifts, $100 to the RI General Fund and $100 to the RI Polio Plus Fund.  This year our Club has donated to some very worthy causes: Manna Food Center for $3,400, Nourish Now $500, Believe in Belize (Thank you Nabil!) $1,840, Rotary International General Fund $1,500, Rotary International Polio Plus $1,500, and four beautiful teak benches to various police and fire stations $5,205.  Thank you all! Best, Phil  
Photo:  Our Latest Bench Donation to the MSP Rockville Barracks on Montrose Rd
Dr. Christopher F. Puttock, Rotary District Environment Committee & ESRAG Chair is Guest Speaker on December 17, 2020
 
Dr. Christopher Puttock is an environmental scientist and botanist with more than 35 years’ experience in environmental conservation. In addition to his role as Executive Director of Chesapeake Natives, he is a research associate in the Botany Department at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History. Dr. Puttock has led many outreach programs for greater community awareness of the consequences of human interruption to the natural environment.
As a conservation scientist, he is convinced that without the effective implementation of outreach strategies to coordinate sustainable use of natural resources and to preserve the world’s ecosystems, the welfare of humanity and all the Earth’s biodiversity will continue to suffer irreparable degradation. Through his work with Chesapeake Natives, he preserves, propagates and promotes plants native to the Chesapeake watershed. Native seeds are gathered and grown by volunteers on the grounds and in the historic greenhouses of Mt. Airy Mansion in Rosaryville State Park, MD.
Dr. Puttock has been President of the Botanical Society of Washington, and a board member of the Maryland Native Plant Society and the Hawaii Conservation Alliance Foundation. Prior to that, he lived in Australia for 34 years as a botanist and writer for Flora of Australia. He was born in England. Dr. Puttock holds a doctorate in plant systematics and a diploma in science education, with many years of fieldwork and research experience in biodiversity, staff supervision and educational outreach.
Eric Bernard, President of the Rockville Volunteer Fire Department and Executive Director of the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Association was our Guest Speaker on December 10, 2020 (via Zoom)
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President Todd Nitkin held a Club Assembly and Reported on the Completion of Our Club's Largest International Project, a School in Rural Ethiopia on December 3, 2020
Dr. Robert Freedman was our Guest Speaker on November 19, 2020 and gave an excellent presentation on the Israel-UAE Peace Agreement and the Outlook for the Middle East
Trina Sensenig, Award-Winning Beekeeper, was our Guest Speaker at the Rotary Club Meeting on November 12, 2020
 
Phil Meade talked about ordering additional teak benches and installation locations.
Anton Gradisek from the Rotary Club of Ljubljana Tivoli, Slovenia, joined us via Zoom.
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Vincent Upole, Commander of the Rockville Barrack of the Maryland State Police was our Guest Speaker at the Rotary Club Meeting on November 5, 2020
 
[L-R] Vincent Upole, Commander of the Rockville Barrack of the Maryland State Police, Potomac-Bethesda Rotary Club Treasurer Phil Meade and Fire Marshal Brian Geraci.  Phil presented both guests with a Rotary wine glass.
 
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Rotarians Enjoyed Fine Food and Fellowship at Bretton Woods on October 29, 2020
Last Thursday at our social at Bretton Woods, Dr. Noel Howard brought back Fritz Cineas to enjoy the camaraderie and perhaps to rejoin our Club.  As you probably remember, Fritz was a member of the Potomac Bethesda Rotary Club years ago.  He was the Ambassador from Haiti.  
Potomac-Bethesda Rotary Club Donated $1000 to Manna Food Center
Rotary District Membership Chair Jennie Coppit was our guest speaker in-person at the Rotary Club Meeting on October 15, 2020
 
Alan Grant Received the Rotarian of the Year Award
Nabil Bedewi gave a PowerPoint Presentation on IT Maturity Levels for Hybrid Meetings at the Rotary Club Meeting on October 8, 2020
 
As I mentioned at the Rotary Club meeting, I am working on another project to supply computers to schools in Belize through my nonprofit Believe in Belize and my partnership with MESA in District 6600.  This is the link to the first project I did a couple of years ago https://believeinbelize.org/stories/project-205-computers-for-schools-in-belize.
 
For this new project if you have any computers (monitors, printers, etc. are OK too) you would like to donate please email me to work out the logistics.
 
Also, I have an opportunity to purchase 65 used computers for $20 each at a total cost of $1300.  If anyone is interested in helping fund this purchase you may do so through the PayPal link or by sending a check to Believe in Belize, 9402 Bentridge Ave., Potomac MD 20854.  Donations are deductible per US code.  Anyone not planning to itemize when filing their 2020 tax return should find this link to be of interest https://finance.yahoo.com/news/cares-act-expands-tax-deductions-220753231.html.
 
PayPal donation link:
 
https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=JW46KDJ3Z3BNU&source=url.
 
Thank you for your support!
 
Nabil.
Newest Potomac-Bethesda Rotarian Stuart I. Silverman gave his Classification Talk at the Rotary Club Meeting on October 1, 2020
Stuart I. Silverman is the newest member of the Potomac-Bethesda Rotary Club and October 1 was his first day of membership.  He is an attorney in Bethesda focusing on health care law.
 
Diana Varela Gave a PowerPoint Presentation on Social Security at the Rotary Club Meeting on September 24, 2020
Rotarians Enjoyed Fellowship In-Person at Normandie Farm Restaurant and via Zoom on September 10, 2020
Nabil Bedewi gave an update on "Believe in Belize" at the Rotary Club meeting on September 3, 2020
Nabil is a co-Founder of Believe in Belize.  After visiting Belize with his wife for the first time in 2013, they fell in love with the country and decided to make it their home away from home.  Believe in Belize is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting Belizeans through education, health, and community development by partnering with other organizations to deliver high impact projects and services.  Nabil’s initiative has delivered 205 PCs to Schools, bicycle reflectors, medical equipment and is planning on donating a fire truck.  He also has initiatives in educational scholarships, emergency health, medical measurements, COVID-19 relief and more.  Nabil retired as a Georgetown University professor in 2011. He spent 29 years of his professional career in Information Technology and Project Management, spanning the government, commercial and education sectors. He has academic degrees in Aerospace Engineering (Bachelor of Science), Systems Engineering (Masters of Science) and Engineering Management with specialty in Artificial Intelligence and Human Factors (Doctor of Science).  He is married and has one daughter.   Nabil's family origin is from Lebanon, but he was born in Egypt, raised in Kuwait and has lived in the US since 1979.  Nabil is a Rotarian (since 2007), member of the Paul Harris Society and a member and Past President of the Rotary Club of Potomac-Bethesda.  In his free time he enjoys watching sports and learning about history.  
Area Governor Heidi Webb was our guest speaker at the Rotary Club meeting on August 20, 2020
 
 
A special treat of the evening was Gladys Howard singing "Autumn Leaves" in French with the live band.  Bravo!
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Lucy Bedewi gave a presentation on "Personal Fashion Styling" at the Rotary Club meeting on August 6, 2020.
 
Rotarians met with social distancing and viewed Lucy Bedewi online at the Potomac-Bethesda Rotary Club hybrid meeting on August 6, 2020.
New Member Deniz Subasi Gave His Classification Talk on July 23, 2020
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Rotarians Enjoyed Dinner Outdoors and an Excellent Presentation from Dr. Mark Kortepeter on July 9, 2020
Rotarians Celebrated the New Rotary Year with Miniature Golf and Dinner at Bretton Woods Recreation Center on July 2, 2020
[Above] Festive Rotary fellowship at Bretton Woods overlooking the Potomac River and 200 acres of golfing.
[Below]. Rotarians were challenged with massive boulders in the middle of the miniature golf course.
Rotarians Celebrated the End of 2019-20 Rotary Year with Dinner Inside Normandie Farm Restaurant on June 25, 2020
President Todd Nitkin honored for service to the Potomac-Bethesda Rotary Club
I just wanted to take a moment and thank everyone in the club for the wonderful Past President Pin for my 3-year term as President, and for the beautiful plaque that is now hanging proudly in my home-office. They mean a lot to me, as does this club and all of your friendship and comradery in Rotary. I truly feel blessed to belong to a club that supports me and allows me to ‘spread my wings’ and undertake projects that are meaningful to me.  I am proud of our club’s commitment to Rotary, the Rotary Fund, and those in need both locally and internationally.  Attached, please find a picture of the plaque in my home-office, and a Citation from the District Governor (not a speeding citation :) ) that I received in the mail this morning. Our club has a proud tradition of making a big impact. Thank you again; I will cherish both of these gifts.  With the warmest regards and thanks.  - Dr. Todd Nitkin
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Potomac-Bethesda Rotarians Dine Outdoors at Normandie Farm Restaurant on June 18, 2020
 
Hybrid Rotary Club Meeting on June 11, 2020, featured half of the Rotarians on Zoom and half dining outside at the Normandie Farm Restaurant
Thanks very much to Past President Nabil Bedewi and Michael Henstra for all the wonderful support to keep the Potomac-Bethesda Rotary Club meeting via Zoom.
Rotarians Distributed Valentine's Presents to 75 Homeless Women at the Interfaith Works Women's Center on February 13, 2020.
 
Gladys and Noel Howard led the effort to wrap and distribute pashmina scarves as Valentine's Day gifts to 75 homeless women in Rockville on February 13, 2020.
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Dictionaries Have Been Distributed to Area Elementary Schools Under the Leadership of Alan Grant
Alan Grant and Bob Nelson distributed dictionaries to third graders at Seven Locks Elementary School on November 25, 2019.
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Potomac-Bethesda Rotary Donates Bench to Interfaith Works Women's Center
 
[November 6, 2019] The beautiful bench from the Potomac Bethesda Rotary Club was delivered to our shelter today!  The bench was placed  in our non-smoking area for our ladies.  Thank you so much for the lovely, thoughtful and useful donation to our center! Please send our deepest gratitude to the members of the Potomac Rotary Club for this generous donation! We will also post the donation on our Center's Facebook. Regards, Josiane Makon, LCSW-C, Program Director, Interfaith Works Women's Center, 2 Taft Court Suite 100, Rockville, MD 20850. www.iworksmc.org

 
 
Matching Paul Harris Credits for Rotary Foundation Donations
There are Paul Harris (PH) credits available for members to make up the $1000 donation required.  It works this way: If you pay half of the amount you need for a PH fellowship, then the club will use available credits to make up the balance.  So for instance say you already have PH credits amounting to $ 600.  If you donate another $200, then the club will match your amount with some of those credits bringing the total to $ 1000 and bringing you a PH fellowship!  And Rotary benefits, too!
Russell Hampton
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