Posted by Bob Heck on Jan 06, 2020
Rotary Club of Olympia
The Wheel
Today’s Program: Legislative Kickoff and Key issues – State Representative Laurie Dolan (22nd LD), State Representative JT Wilcox (2nd LD)
Meeting Called to order: President Colleen @ 12:25 pm
  • Invocation by: Skip Steffen
  • Pledge of Allegiance led by: Victoria Byerly
  • Song: America The Beautiful led by Gloria Strait
  • Four Way Test led by: Jim Phillips
Visiting Rotarians
  • Stacey Belser – Gateway Rotary
  • Steve Masini – West Olympia Rotary
Guest of Rotarians
  • Hannah Adams – Dennis Adam’s daughter/recent UW Graduate (now working at Nordstrom)
  • Aaron Lamb – Artistic Director, Harlequin Productions
  • Hap Clemons – Acting Managing Director, Harlequin Productions
  • Frank Villanueva – Rainier District Director - Boy Scouts of America
  • Mark Allen – Nancy Zussy Allen’s husband
Happy Bucks – hosted by Al Cohen
  • Gerry Alexander - attended the swearing in ceremony for the newly appointed Washington State Supreme Court Justice, Raquel Montoya-Lewis. Justice Montoya-Lewis is the first member of the State Supreme Court of Native American decent. The ceremony also included the swearing in of the newly elected Chief Justice, club member Debra Stephens. Gerry shared that she will be a great Chief.
  • Oscar Soule ­– Rotary’s Opening Day at the Mariners is Thursday, 3/26 for the 1:10pm game. Let Oscar know if you’d like to join in this annual Club tradition; He also thanked the club members for helping him with the projects around his house.
  • Steve Masini – Invited members to the 2nd Annual West Olympia Club Dueling Piano fundraiser, “Westside Story”. The event is on Friday, January 24 – more information can be found at:
  • Sam Bovard - Shared he just celebrated the 2nd birthday of his granddaughter; and, reminded the club about the upcoming Rotary Pub Night on Monday, 1/13 at Stack 571 in the Capital Mall.
  • Geoff Crooks - He and Beth had a wonderful European trip to visit their daughter in the Versailles region of France. They also added a quick stop in London for some theatre.
  • Skip Steffen  - thanked the club for their hospitality to the panel on hunger at our meeting last month. It’s an important topic in our community and while the tempo of the meeting was off, he appreciated the full engagement of the members during the panel.
Rotary History Moment
As part of the Rotary 100 celebration, Suze Kent shared a few stories about the Club. She joined in 1990. In 1987 the club expanded membership to include women and some of the initial female members are still with the club today. It was a very good decision for our club. She also shared about the Pidgeon Race from 1990-1991 and a few other vignettes.
Distinguished Leadership Award for Gerry Alexander 
Distinguished Leadership Awards a program of Leadership Thurston County, will honor member Gerry Alexander for his many years of leadership and service to our community and to our state. The event is on Thursday, 1/16 – for tickets please visit:
Invocation Committee
Tom Lally reminded members that a few openings remain on the Invocation schedule, if interested please contact Tom to sign-up.
Harlequin Productions Season Update
Aaron Lamb, Artistic Director, gave a brief update on the season and the opening play, Noises Off, which the New York Post calls “the funniest farce ever written”. Gloria then auctioned tickets to the show, won by Jim Leonard.
Program: Legislative Kickoff and Key issues – State Representative Laurie Dolan (22nd LD), State Representative JT Wilcox (2nd LD)
Warren Carlson introduced State Rep. Laurie Dolan, a former schoolteacher from Spokane and the Policy Director under Governor Christine Gregoire. She has served as the State Representative from the 22nd LD since 2017 and is a member of our club. Bob Wubbena introduced State Rep. JT Wilcox, member of the Wilcox Farm family and the current Minority Leader of the State House. Leader Wilcox has represented the 2nd LD since 2011.
Representative Dolan thanked everyone for their support during the last 8 weeks as she has recovered from her back surgery. She said that important skills to a successful legislative session are building relationships and putting the shoe on the other foot. The State Legislature focuses on good government bills and the House Chamber works well together. Frank Chopp, the outgoing House Speaker (who is likely the longest serving state house Speaker in the nation) has left his leadership role and will remain in the chamber as a member. He is replaced by State Representative Laurie Jenkins from the 27th LD (Tacoma). Rep. Dolan will focus on Early Learning.
Minority Leader Wilcox shared about his district. The 2nd LD is very rural. The largest town is Yelm. He has been a part of his family business in Yelm and related that serving as an elected official is sometimes like being a part of a family business. He also spoke to the role of the Minority Party and the ease at which he is able to work with almost all of his colleagues in the State House. He will focus on Early Learning this session.
Both guests were able to take a few questions from the Club.
Mr. Snappy
Jay Burney won gift certificate to Hash, donated by Felix D'Allesandro.
Meeting Adjourned: 1:33pm by President Colleen