Posted by Diane Gallegos on Jan 13, 2020
Rotary Club of Olympia
The Wheel
Today’s Program: Port of Olympia
Meeting Called to order: Colleen Gillespie @ 12:25 pm
  • Invocation by: Bob Heck reflected on the importance of education. He recited Proverbs 4:7 The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding.
  • Pledge of Allegiance led by: Jim Larsen
  • Song: My Country Tis of Thee, led by Gloria Strait in honor of Steve Bean.
  • Four Way Test led by: Heather Antanaitis  
Visiting Rotarians
Bret Anderson – Seattle 4
Guest of Rotarians
Bob Heck introduced two guests joining him today - Lauren Adler. District Director for U.S. Rep. Denny Heck and Marsha Tandano Long, board member, Hands On Children’s Museum
Happy Bucks – hosted by Jim Leonard
  • Sean Padget became a grandfather on December 28. The baby was born while Sean and his children were in route.
  • Mark Boyer, chair of the scholarship committee, shared a note he received from one of the scholarship recipients stating that school has given her purpose. She has only missed one day of school despite health issues.
  • Mary Sue Wilson contributed her November birthday happy bucks and acknowledged Justice Debra Stephens has been elected by her fellow members of the Washington Supreme Court to be chief justice. The ceremony can be found on TVW. All three of Mary’s children won their basketball games over the weekend!
  • Bob Heck spent the day at the Double Tree for a productive HOCM board retreat. The consultant reminded the board that they don’t go alone, they go with community.
  • Jim Leonard sent around the Happy Bucks sign up sheet.
Pub Night
Pub Night is tonight at Stack 571 in the Mall
Preston Troy Celebration of Life
The Preston Troy memorial service is Saturday, January 25 from 1-3 at the Olympia Country Club
Members Leaving the Club
Gerald Pumphrey and Steve Ryan have announced their retirement from the club.
Paul Harris Award
Christina Daniels, Rotary Foundation Chair, awarded Bill Latta a PH+1 for reaching the $1000 contribution level. Bill honored the memory of his wife with his gift.
Steve Bean auctioned 3 copies the publication produced in 2000 by the Olympian to honor the 150 Year Anniversary of the city of Olympia.
Program: Port of Olympia
Chuck Fowler introduced Sam Gibboney, executive director of the Port.  Sam is celebrating her one-year anniversary in this position.  Most recently she served as the Executive Director of the Port of Port Townsend where Chuck first met her.  Chuck applauded Sam for her support in finding a permanent home for the Parthia tugboat.
The Parthia, one of Olympia’s oldest tugboats, sank in Hood Canal in August 2017. Several members of the nonprofit South Sound Maritime Heritage Association (including Chuck) worked to rescue and refloat the tugboat.  It was brought to Port Townsend where Sam was at the time.  The Parthia has a home under a canopy next to the Olympia Farmers Market. They hope to have a ribbon cutting by Harbor Days.
Sam directs the development of goals, business plans, budgets, programs and directs the staff at the Port.  She reports to the three-member Port Commission that serves as the board of directors.  In August 2019 the Port Commissioners unanimously accepted the Port Vision 2050 final plan following a comprehensive community-based visioning process.  The Washington Port system has the most ports of any state – 75!
Projects made possible through community support of the Port:
  • Equipment and dredging to maintain global market access at the Marine Terminal
  • Emergency Readiness via access to Olympia Regional Airport and Marine Terminal
  • East Bay Redevelopment including Hands on Children’s Museum, LOTT, East Bay Plaza, etc.
  • Expanded Swantown Marina and Boatworks and new marine fueling station
  • Renovation of the Clean Water Center in Tumwater
  • Habitat Conservation Plan for the Olympia Regional Airport and surrounding properties
  • Environmental Stewardship
  • Small Cities Program to support community development goals in rural Thurston County
  • Harbor Patrol/Marine Safety
  • Farmers Market location
Rotarians had several questions for Sam including possibilities for enhancing transportation in the area through airport expansion (commercial carrier) and ferry service. The ferry currently residing at the Port will eventually be towed through the Panama Canal to Florida where it will serve as a restaurant. The current owners are paying rent.
There was also a question about cruise ships visiting Port which could be possible if supported by the business community. The new fuel station is state of the art and sales are up dramatically. Sam also stated that the trade wars/tariffs are having a real impact. They are seeing dramatic shifts in business models and the impacts have decimated some of the other ports.
Sam’s husband Lowell Jons is a teacher in Yelm, and son Rowan Jons is in school in Walla Walla.
Mr. Snappy: Dennis Peterson won 2 Cinemark movie passes, donated by Reid Bates
Meeting Adjourned: 1:30pm by Colleen Gillespie