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Welcome to our Club!

Southwest Eureka

Service Above Self

We meet Fridays at 12:00 PM
The Lodge
445 Herrick Ave.,
Eureka, CA  95503
United States
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Members of the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka presented its semi-annual “Service Above Self” award to Cadet Stephanie Garnica during Thursday’s graduation ceremony for the College of the Redwoods 121st Basic Law Enforcement Academy.   The award recognizes conduct that exemplifies "Service Above Self” which is the motto of Rotary and provides a plaque and $1000 to offset training and uniform costs to each year’s recipient.  Cadet Garnica was nominated by her fellow cadets who were asked to select ”one of their own who they felt best displayed the attributes and ethical conduct found in the Law Enforcement Officer’s Code of Ethics and the Rotary 4-Way Test,” said Humboldt County Sheriff and Rotarian William Honsal in remarks made before the presentation of the award.  A fellow cadet, in nominating Cadet Garnica for the award wrote that “This cadet puts the needs of others first.  She always helps people when needed…is a team player and a good leader.  She will make a great peace officer and a good friend.”  Cadet Garnica will be joining the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Department.  Pictured (left to right): Rotarian and Humboldt County Sheriff William Honsal, Rotary Vocational Chair Shelley Nilsen, Cadet Stephanie Garnica, Rotary President Matt Nilsen.
Members of the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka attended Saturday’s Rotary District 5130 District Training Assembly in Fortuna joining almost 100 Rotarians from Humboldt and Del Norte Rotary clubs.  The annual meeting provides information, training and education about opportunities to enhance and expand clubs’ projects and service to their communities, local and international.  Pictured, left to right:  Past-President Marty Lay, Vice President Ken Singleton, Past-Presidents Cindy Denbo and Greg Dale, Directors Liz Ennis and Bill Gillespie,  Past-President Mary Crumley, Vice President-Elect John Vandermolen, President-Elect Eddie Morgan.
Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka Rotarian Mark McGowan (right) was awarded the 2017 Ed Nilsen Rotarian of the Year award last week.  The award was presented by 2016-17 club President Roland Johnson who thanked McGowan for last year's extraordinary service to the club provided through a variety of avenues of Rotary service.  Past-President Johnson recognized McGowan's work with the Rotary Foundation, the Stephen Brodhag Memorial Golf Tournament, the club’s International Youth Exchange program, the Lyme Disease Testing Program (LymeTAP) managed by the club that has benefited thousands of people across the U.S., and his current involvement with the Race Across America to support early literacy efforts in Humboldt County.  The annual award is named after Ed Nilsen, a founding member of the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka who "exemplified the highest level of service and devotion to the ideals of Rotary and demonstrated these principals consistently through his lifetime of 88 years,” said Johnson.  McGowan is the third Southwest Eureka Rotarian to be honored with the presentation of the Nilsen award.
Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka President Matt Nilsen (left) presented club member Michael Davies-Hughes with a check for $1000 in support of Davies-Hughes’ and his Team Red Dragon's participation in Race Across America (RAAM).  Considered to be the most challenging and arduous cycling competition in the world, RAAM’s cyclists will leave Oceanside, California and and arrive in Annapolis, Maryland approximately twelve days later.  Based on other years’ races, it is anticipated that fewer than half of the participants—who come from more than forty countries—will finish the 3,000 mile, coast-to-coast race.  Davies-Hughes is currently training for the June event, preparing for 20-hour days of cycling and temperatures that will range from freezing to more than 100 degrees Fahrenheit.  Davies-Hughes is the Assistant Superintendent for Educational Services for Eureka City Schools.  His participation will benefit the Humboldt County Office of Education’s early literacy efforts through the Decade of Difference initiative .  His Rotary club is sponsoring him and Team Red Dragon and provides its contribution as part of its long-standing support for students, education and literacy on the North Coast.  In addition to club funding, members provided additional personal contributions of $1800 for Davies-Hughes' RAAM.  For additional information or to support Team Red Dragon and the early literacy project:
Eureka City Council member Natalie Arroyo joined members of the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka, city officials and community members at the dedication of the revamped Highland Park basketball court on Saturday.  President of the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka Matt Nilsen was presented with a Certificate of Appreciation for the effort and funding contributed by the club to the project.  The Southwest Eureka Rotary provided funding for the court and fence renovation from proceeds from its signature June event, Martinis By The Bay.  Mercer-Fraser Company donated the asphalt re-surfacing of the court and Hamanaka Painting Company donated the striping of the court and painting of the center court Rotary logo.  Eventually 13 1/2 foot lighting stanchions will be added to Highland Park as part of the renovation project.  Pictured, left to right:   Rotarians and Past-Presidents of the club Roland Johnson and Mary Crumley, President Matt Nilsen, Council member Natalie Arroyo, Rotarian Bill Gillespie, Rotarian and Past-President Melinda Ciarabellini.  Not pictured:  Rotarian and Project Coordinator John Vandermolen.
Melinda Ciarabellini, Past-President of the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka,  Shelley Nilsen, Vocational Chair for the club’s Board of Directors, club President Matt Nilsen and fellow Rotarian Humboldt County Sheriff William F. Honsal III awarded the club's Service Above Self Award to Cadet Timothy Del Fiorentino during December's College of the Redwoods 120th Law Enforcement Academy graduation ceremony.   The award was presented to Cadet Del Fiorentino in recognition of his dedication to public service and his reliable willingness to support other cadets in training assignments with generosity and professionalism, according to Ciarabellini.  He was nominated and selected to receive the award by his fellow cadets.   Cadet Del Fiorentino received a plaque and a $1000 cash award to offset training and equipment costs.  “ 'Service Above Self’ is the motto of Rotarians,” said Ciarabellini, “and it is our honor to recognize Cadet Del Fiorentino, someone whose conduct during training exemplifies the Law Enforcement Code of Ethics and the Rotary’s guiding principle of service.”  Ciarabellini thanked each of the 22 graduating cadets “in advance, for your dedicated service to public safety and your communities.”  The Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka award is presented twice each year to a graduating cadet.  (Pictured, left to right: Rotarians Ciarabellini and Shelley Nilsen, Sheriff Honsal, Cadet Del Fiorentino, Rotarian Matt Nilsen.)
President of the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka Matt Nilsen (left) and fellow Rotarian Ron Harris sent a check for $37,000 to the Rotary District 5130 Fire Relief Fund last week.  The funds were collected by Southwest Eureka Rotary in a fundraising effort spearheaded by Harris to support victims and survivors of the devastating October fires in Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino and Lake counties.  Distribution of the contributed funds will be administered by Rotarians.   There will be no overhead or administrative costs—all donated funds will be used to provide shelter, small business grants, grief counseling and other services to those affected.  Contributions were provided by members of the Rotary club of Southwest Eureka and other Humboldt County Rotarians, residents, high school students and businesses and were matched in a dollar-for-dollar contribution by Ron Harris and Rainbow Self-Storage.
President of the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka Matt Nilsen presented a $2500 check to Eureka Police Department (EPD) Captain Brian Stephens and EPD Public Information Officer Brittany Powell this month to support the EPD’s Shop-With-a-Cop Program.  On Sunday, members of the Eureka Police Department joined disadvantaged children as they enjoyed a holiday shopping trip to Target.   The children, each assisted by a law enforcement professional, selected Christmas presents for their family or items for themselves.  The Rotary contribution to the program was provided through proceeds from the club’s 2016 Cirque de Soulless: The Illusion event which raised funding to support both last year’s and this year’s Shop-With-A-Cop program.  Pictured, left to right:  Brian Stephens, Brittany Powell, Matt Nilsen.
Jerome was born February 27, 1925 in Eureka to Tom and Mary Colivas. He died at St. Joseph's Hospital November 30, 2017, he was 92. Jerry grew up in Cutten where the family owned a home and 40 acres near Walnut Drive and Holly Street. During high school his parents moved from Eureka to San Francisco, so he attended both Eureka High and Mission High in San Francisco and graduated in 1942. He had been "skipped" a grade so he graduated at age 17 and then worked loading ammunition ships until he turned 18 and joined the Army. He fought in the South Pacific in WWII. He was in four historic battles and was very patriotic and of the view that war should only be the very last resort. He and some others in the Rotary Clubof SW Eureka started a Veterans Day Program in 1983 to honor all veterans. This program continues today, and he was the keynote speaker at several programs over the years. 
Angel Barker, on behalf of her fellow students attending Six Rivers Charter High School in Arcata, delivered a contribution to the Rotary District 5130 Fire Relief Fund to Matt Nilsen, President of the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka this week.  The donation of $417.71 was provided by students attending the charter high school who collected contributions for ten days in response to Angel’s fundraising efforts.
Ron Harris, Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka
Even as wildfires still burn in the counties of Napa, Sonoma, Lake and Mendocino local Rotarians are reaching out to help. 
“Those of us who live on the North Coast have personal, business and professional ties to the people and places being devastated by fire,” said Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka President Matt Nilsen.  “Our instinct is to try to help when people are in need...and this emergency is, for many of us, close to home.” 
The club is collecting monetary contributions to help those affected and is offering an opportunity to maximize those contributions.  Southwest Eureka Rotarian Ron Harris is stepping up in a big way to augment donations from Rotarians and from members of the community, according to Nilsen.  Harris, owner of Rainbow Self-Storage, has committed his business to match, dollar for contributed dollar, up to $10,000 in new donations to fund assistance for those in need.  "There are times when we can help our neighbors in their very real time of need...this is one of those times," said Harris.  Donations must be new donations contributed from October 13 forward—“and our goal is to take advantage of every matching dollar offered by Ron and Rainbow Self-Storage.” said Nilsen.
Donations from Rotarians, contributions from community members and matching funds provided by Rainbow Self-Storage will be contributed to The Rotary District 5130 Fire Relief Fund.  The Rotary 5130 Fire Relief Fund is administered by Rotarians and supports a multitude of needs including but not limited to: small business grants, housing, shelter support, grief counseling, and other assistance to people and businesses that have been displaced by this tragedy.  Every dollar donated will be used to support fire survivors with no fund overhead expense, according to Nilson.
The Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka invites Rotarians and others to join it in contributing to the Rotary District 5130 Fire Relief Fund—and to take advantage of the opportunity to double each donated dollar.  ”We are a remarkably generous community,” said Nilsen.  ”And we know that so many have already given so much.  This is an opportunity to provide another avenue of assistance.”
Information about the fund is available at  Questions can be sent to
How you can contribute: For tax purposes and to have your donated dollar matched, donors can provide their contributions to the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka Foundation via Club Treasurer John Goff (David L. Moonie & Co., 707-442-1737, Mail a check made out to Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka Foundation to P.O. Box 6054, Eureka CA 95502, with Fire Relief Fund in the subject line or on the envelope.

The Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka will present its annual Veterans Day program on Saturday, November 11 at the Adorni Center in Eureka. "Each year our club presents a program to honor and thank, not only more than 9,000 veterans who live in Humboldt County and two million California veterans but, through them, almost 22 million American veterans living in the United States as well as the men and women currently serving in the armed forces and Merchant Marines. It is our privilege to recognize their extraordinary commitment and service to our country," said club President Matt Nilsen.
Thirteen members of North Coast Rotary clubs rolled into Eureka this morning on their way from Crescent City to Petaluma, using wheels and strong legs to raise funds for world-wide polio eradication.  The goal for the Pedal for Polio effort is to raise $84,000 from Rotary District 5130 Rotarians which will be augmented with a two-for-one dollar match by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.   Cyclists from Calistoga, Mendocino, Middletown, Petaluma, Petaluma Sunrise, Petaluma Valley, Rancho Cotati, Rohnert Park/Cotati, Santa Rosa, Santa Rosa Sunrise, Santa Rosa West, Santa Rosa East, Windsor, Healdsburg, Kelseyville Sunrise, Sebastopol, Sebastopol Sunrise, Willits, and Southwest Eureka participated in the six day event. 
Eureka’s three Rotary clubs—Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka, Rotary Club of Eureka, Rotary Club of Old Town—joined the Elks Lodge in hosting more than 120 U.S. Coast Guard servicemen and women and their guests Thursday evening at a steak dinner at the Lodge.  The dinner, part of the City of Eureka’s month-long celebration of Eureka’s historic relationship with the Coast Guard, is an annual event spearheaded by the Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka.  Eureka is one of 21officially-designated Coast Guard cities in the country and, with San Diego and Alameda, is one of only three California cities recognized as a city of special importance to the Coast Guard.  In comments made by event organizers, the Coast Guard was thanked for its vital service and for providing life-saving assistance to North Coast residents and visitors since 1856.  Coast Guard personnel are currently stationed at Coast Guard Air Station Humboldt Bay (Eureka-Arcata Airport in McKinleyville) and the Humboldt Bay Life-Saving Station (Samoa Peninsula near the entrance to the Bay).  In addition to the steak dinners enjoyed by close to two hundred people who attended the event, steak dinners were grilled, boxed and prepared for delivery to on-duty personnel by Rotarians, members of the Elks Lodge, and volunteers from Lost Coast Rotaract.  Pictured with boxed dinners (left to right):  Southwest Eureka Rotarian Haider Ajina, Elks Lodge Loyal Knight Gwen Carroll, Southwest Eureka Rotarian Melinda Ciarabellini, Old Town Rotarian Chuck Petrusha, Lost Coast Rotaractor Nick Savage, Old Town Rotarian Al Steer, Eureka Rotarian Nancy Dean, Southwest Eureka Rotarian Mike Newman, Eureka Rotarian Rick Littlefield.
Donate to the Rotary 5130 Fire Relief Fund
Send a check made out to: The Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka Foundation 
                                        PO Box 6054
                                        Eureka, CA  95502
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Donate in Jerry's Name
Donate to the Rotary Club of SW Eureka Foundation
Mail checks to:    Rotary Club of SW Eureka Foundation
PO Box 6054
Eureka, CA  95502
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Harlyn Fitzgerald (Haider Ajina)
Jun 22, 2018
Outbound exchange student destination Taiwan
Jul 06, 2018
Fred Van Vleck
Jul 27, 2018
Eureka City Schools Instructional and Construction programs update
Sheriff Billy Honsal
Aug 17, 2018
Aug 31, 2018
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