2013 Riders and Outwalkers
The Rotary Rose Parade Float Committee Inc. presents “Oh The Places We Go” as the theme of our January 1, 2013 float.
A central world globe represents the community and global service contributed by the Rotary International network of 1.2 million community volunteers worldwide. As the globe spins and gears turn, lotus and cherry blossoms and giant origami “peace cranes” will remind the millions of viewers around the world of Rotary International’s commitment to “Service above Self” while also reflecting Rotary International President Tanaka’s vision of “Peace through Service.” We celebrate our Rotary members who travel around the world to promote world understanding and peace and conduct humanitarian service.
Sixteen of those Rotary Club international volunteers will be “Float Participants” on our 2013 float – some will be riding the float and several more will be walking alongside the float.
Rotary District 2270 Rotary International President
Sakuji Tanaka is the former chair of the Daika Company and former president of the National Household Papers Distribution Association of Japan. He also has been vice president of the Yashio City Chamber of Commerce.
A member of the Rotary Club of Yashio since its charter in 1975, Tanaka has served RI as a director, Rotary Foundation trustee, chair of the 2009 Birmingham Convention Committee, member of the Polio Eradication Advocacy Task Force and Future Vision Committee, and regional Rotary Foundation coordinator, district governor, and training leader. Working with his district, he helped to construct a school building in Bangladesh.
Tanaka has received the RI Service Above Self Award and the Foundation’s Citation for Meritorious Service and Distinguished Service Award. He and his wife, Kyoko, are Paul Harris Fellows, Benefactors of the Permanent Fund, Major Donors, and members of the Arch C. Klumph Society. In addition, Tanaka has established an endowed Rotary Peace Fellowship.
He and Kyoko have been married since 1963 and have three children and seven grandchildren.
Rotary District 5190 – Northeastern California and Nevada
Sam “Woody” Wilbanks
Sam “Woody” Wilbanks grew up in Southern California where he attended West LA College in Culver City. There he played football and received a scholarship to play at Tulsa University in Oklahoma. He left football behind after his sophomore year to pursue a degree in Forestry, earning his Bachelor of Science at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 1976.
Sam started his career in Forestry with the USDA Forest Service on the Sequoia National Forest. For the next 32 years Sam served on various National Forests throughout Northern California. In 1983 he took two years off to obtain his Masters Degree from Oregon State University in Corvallis. Sam moved to his final assignment with the Forest Service at the Sierraville Ranger District of the Tahoe National Forest in 1996, where he retired in 2008.
Sam joined the Rotary Club of Loyalton California in 1997 serving as President in 2001-2002. During that year the club won District 5190’s Small Club of Excellence, earning a total of 6 district awards. Currently District Governor for 5190, he has served the District as Assistant Governor, Community Service Chair, and Regional Youth Leadership Assembly Co-Director. Sam is also on the District Training Cadre, assisting with assembly training and other district needs. He is a Major Donor, a member of the Paul Harris Society, and he is a Bequest Society member. He and his wife have hosted six Rotary Youth Exchange students.
His wife Kim is an educator and very active as a Rotary Partner. She chaired District 5190’s Read by Nine Book Drive in 2008, helping to set a Guinness World record for book drives at the Rotary International Convention in Los Angeles. Kim is a Paul Harris Fellow, a Major Donor, and member of the Bequest Society. Their four daughters are all Paul Harris Fellows and one daughter, a past President of the Rotary Interact Club at Portola High School, went on a Rotary Youth Exchange to Belgium.
In addition to Rotary, Sam serves as a Safety Officer on a National Interagency Incident Management Team that responds to large forest fires and other national disasters. He is involved locally with the Quincy Library Group. This grass roots organization promotes community economic stability and healthy fire resilient forests through responsible forest management. Sam has also coached youth sports for many years including softball, basketball, and volleyball.
Rotary District 5230 – Central California
Shirley Grace was born and raised in Fresno California, Shirley Grace has a BA from California State University Fresno and a Masters in Public Administration from National University. She was an independent insurance agent for 17 years and her second career was in information technology for nine years. She is the retired Information Technology Manager from the Fresno County Sheriff’s Department.
Shirley is past President of the Rotary Club of Fresno having been a member since 2001. She traveled to Mexico in July of 2009 with the Club’s Project Nino team of doctors, nurses, dentists and optometrists to provide health care services to over 3,800 children. She has participated each subsequent year and will return in 2013 for the 28th anniversary of this great project. Embracing “Peace through Service.” she is also looking forward to attending Rotary International’s Peace Conference in Honolulu Hawaii this January and participating in a Polio Immunization day with District 3170 in Goa, India in February of 2013.
Shirley is currently Governor for District 5230. She has worked on many District Public Relations Grants, District Simplified Grants and Matching Grants resulting it successful local and international projects. She has fostered two grants with District 3170 of Goa, India to provide sewing machines to underprivileged women in India, providing them a higher standard of living. Also provided were a Braille machine and 100 desks to a school for the blind. Her February 2013 trip to India will implement two additional matching grants. The first grant is very personal to Shirley as she is the mother of a special needs child. Her son, Jeffery, will be in her heart as she helps to distribute 550 wheelchairs to those in need. The second grant will provide machinery and expertise to manufacture and process agricultural based products in several villages in India. The technology will help local women rise above poverty level.
Shirley is a Paul Harris Society and Bequest Society member. She is also a Fresno Fellow and has served on the Board of the Rotary Club of Fresno Foundation for four years. She and her husband Dick Jackson, also a Paul Harris Fellow; have seven children and fourteen grandchildren.
Rotary District 5240 – Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Kern Counties
James M. Lewis
James M. Lewis (Jim) is a native of Southern California, and is a polio survivor. He grew up in the Burbank foothills and rose to the challenge of rehabilitation from multiple leg surgeries to become a swimming and water polo champion, teacher, administrator, coach, and ambassador for the eradication of polio at home and abroad. Jim is retired from 39 years in education, which allows him more time to devote to Rotary. He studied policy planning and school administration at the University of Southern California.
He joined Rotary in 2001, and is a member of the Rotary Club of Moorpark, California. Jim has traveled to India 5 times to participate in National Immunization Day’s, as well as to aid in establishing literacy, educational and vocational training, and to work on matching grants for clean water, eye surgeries, and heart surgeries for India’s poor women and children; he has also contributed to and brought hearing aids to children in Mexico. Jim has been a guest speaker for numerous Rotary Clubs in District 5240 and across the USA. He received the Rotary Foundation District Service Award and the Sam Greene Service Above Self Award. He has served on several District level committees including Grants, Foundation Gala, Polio Plus, and as International Area Service Coordinator. Jim is a Master Potential Rotary Leaders Seminar graduate, a Benefactor, a Bequest Society member and a multiple Paul Harris Fellow.
In 2011-12, during his year as President of the Rotary Club of Moorpark, the club was awarded Best Medium Size Club in the District for it’s outstanding community and international projects. When he was Polio Chair/Co-chair, the district ranked #1 in the world for Polio Plus contributions. Currently, Jim is Vocational Service Director for his district, and will serve as Assistant Governor of District 5240 in 2013-14.
He is an avid football fan who enjoys golf, travel, and visiting his four children and two grandchildren. He and his wife – poet and artist Carol Lewis – enjoy working on the Rotary float, attending Rotary International Conferences, entertaining friends, and volunteering for their church and community.
Rotary District 5280 – Los Angeles Basin, California
Steve Cooley led the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office for 12 years, establishing it as the nation’s premier local prosecutorial agency.
The son of an FBI agent, Mr. Cooley joined the District Attorney’s Office in 1973 as a law clerk. Nearly three decades later, he was elected District Attorney in 2000 by a landslide. He was overwhelmingly re-elected four years later. In 2008, he became the first Los Angeles County District Attorney to be re-elected to a third consecutive term in more than 70 years.
During his tenure, the District Attorney was relentless in his pursuit of public corruption and of lawbreakers within the justice system. Also, he fostered a host of successful initiatives, laws, policies and programs to maximize the use of DNA technology to solve crimes and take serial rapists and killers off the streets.
Mr. Cooley directed roughly 1,000 attorneys, nearly 300 investigators and more than 800 clerical and support personnel. More than 40 percent of the prosecutors in the office were hired during Mr. Cooley’s tenure. They represent one of his most enduring contributions to the office.
An Honorary Rotary Club Member since December 2000, Mr. Cooley has been active in the LA 5 Rotary, contributing to a number of causes, serving as a guest speaker and providing guest speakers to the club. Mr. Cooley presided over the LA 5’s annual “Courageous Citizen Day.” At these events, the District Attorney’s Office and LA 5 joined forces to recognize and commend local residents who have displayed great personal courage in aiding victims of crime, assisting in the apprehension of suspects or coming forward as witnesses. Mr. Cooley also is a Paul Harris Fellow.
A native of Los Angeles, Mr. Cooley obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree from California State University, Los Angeles, and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Southern California Law Center. He and his wife, Jana, have been married for more than 37 years. They have two grown children.
Before retiring, J.T. Warring spent 22 years as Managing Director of two successful independent corporate consultancies he founded; respectively, Warring & Associates with partners in five U.S. cities, then Warring International Management Services, Ltd., serving clients internationally. Early in his business career, he served in junior corporate jobs in the Midwest, was in public accounting, and was an initial equity partner for the global consultant, Korn/Ferry International.
A Rotarian since 1974, he currently serves Rotary International on a direct appointment as Special Representative of the President and Board of Directors to the Republic of Myanmar. In this role, he is responsible to direct and coordinate Rotary’s re-extension into this pivotal Southeast Asian emerging nation, where we once had clubs from 1929 to 1977. Read more about J.T.’s work in Myanmar.
Since 2005, he founded and led a multi-district Rotary service initiative, “The Rotary Myanmar Orphanages Water Systems Project,” recently broadened also to include Buddhist monastery orphanages and villages rebuilt after devastation by Myanmar’s cataclysmic 2008 Nargis Cyclone. To date, Rotary has constructed 26 sites under J.T.’s direction.
A native to Bloomington, Indiana, J.T. holds A.B. and M.B.A. degrees from Indiana University. He resides in Anaheim Hills, California, but spends more than half of each year in Myanmar. He has a son and teenaged granddaughter who also live in California. He is and has headed various service and civic organizations in California.
Rotary District 5300 – Southern California-Southern Nevada
Eugene J. (Gene) Hernandez
Eugene J. (Gene) Hernandez is a retired police officer having spent 35 years in the profession. He last held the position of Police Chief for the City of Chino. Gene became a Rotarian in 1985 as a member of the Orange North California Club in District 5320. He held virtually all positions including Club President and Rotarian of the Year. He became a member of the Chino California Club in 1998 and was that club’s Rotarian of the Year in 2002. He assumed the club presidency in 2003.
At the District level, he is the District Administration Chair, District Training Officer, and District PIO. He was Governor for District 5300 in 2008-09 and has served as past District Board of Directors Chair, immediate past District Governor Selection Committee Chair and the Immediate Past (2011-2012) Chair of the Rotary Rose Parade Float Committee. Gene has travelled extensively for Rotary. He was the 2006 Group Study Exchange Team Leader to Central Europe – District 1910. In 2004 and 2012, he participated in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico and Hermosillo, Mexico respectively, for Wheelchair distributions. In 2005, he was a team member to Zambia, Africa for a Water Well Project, and he participated on NID Teams to India in 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2012. He also served as the 2011 ZONE Institute Support Services Chair and Peace Conference break-out group facilitator.
Gene has been married to Louise for 44 years, has three children, four grandchildren, and resides in the City of Yorba Linda. He and Louise and his family are all Paul Harris Fellows.
Rotary District 5320 – Orange County, Southern Los Angeles County
Jim Paddock grew up in the suburbs of Chicago, graduated from the US Naval Academy, and then spent 11 years on active duty in the Navy as a submarine officer before coming to Placentia, California in 1982 to work for The Boeing Company. He continued to serve his country as a Captain in the Navy Reserves until he retired from the Reserves in 1996.
As a Project Manager at Boeing, he worked on several different military and government projects. Many of these utilized his prior Naval Academy, submarine expertise and leadership skills. Several of his projects involved working with different international companies and government organizations. He also was a key member of the local Boeing group that helped develop the project team concept for program execution.
He has been a member of the Placentia Rotary Club since 1991. He served as club president in 2002-2003 and has been on the club’s Board of Directors in multiple capacities. He served on several district level boards committees and is the current District Governor nominee for District 5320.
During his year as President of his Rotarian Club, the club launched a home building project across the border in Mexico. That was the beginning of many different International projects the club has since undertaken. He has also been an active participant in the club’s community projects.
Jim and his wife Kathy have been married for 43 years and live in Placentia. They have two daughters, a son and nine grandchildren all residing in the Southern California area. He is an avid golfer at the Alta Vista Country Club in Placentia and is a season ticket holder for the Anaheim Ducks hockey team. He and Kathy like to travel and are looking forward to exploring the different countries of the next several Rotary International conventions.
Bob Selinger is a graduate of the University of Arizona and a Phoenix, Arizona native. After graduation Bob was an executive with the Boy Scouts in San Jose and Sacramento, California. He then entered the window fenestration industry as a manufacturer and in 1986 became the Vice President of Bristol Skylight Corp. in Newport Beach, California. Bob became a realtor with Grubb & Ellis in 1988 and retired as a realtor with the Marriott Corp. in 2006.
Bob Selinger has been a member of the Newport-Irvine, California Rotary Club since 1986. A Rotarian since 1972, he originally joined the North Sacramento California Club. Michelle and Aaron, Bob’s children, were Rotary Exchange students and now live in the Bay Area. With his late wife Jean they hosted over 25 Rotary Youth Exchange students. Bob served as District Youth Exchange Officer for five years and for four years was a Director of the multi-district Rotary Youth Exchange organization called SCANEX.
He became a Rotary volunteer in 2006 and has made over 27 trips to Africa. Over the past seven years Bob has raised more than $2 million dollars for projects working with Africans and donor Rotarians world-wide including a hospice in Livingstone, a play park, boreholes throughout Zambia and Zimbabwe, wheelchairs for Zimbabwe and Zambia, restoration of an Old People’s Home, purchase of thousands of mosquito nets, and a project training prostitutes to become seamstresses that empowered graduates with their own sewing machines.
In January 2008, Bob received the Rotary “Service above Self “award, only the third person in his District to be so honored. Bob and his late wife Jean believed in Rotary as Paul Harris Society Benefactor members as well as becoming Arch Klumpf Society members in October 2009.
Rotary District 5330 – Riverside and Imperial Counties
Frank Mata is an educator at Eleanor Roosevelt High School in the newly incorporated town of Eastvale, California. He earned his undergraduate degree from California State University, San Bernardino and a master’s degree from the University of Redlands.
He has been involved with Rotary since he was a junior at Redlands High School in Redlands, CA. He was a typical student who was unsure of his post-high school future. Frank credits being selected by his local Rotary club’s interview panel to attend that year’s Rotary Youth Leadership Awards camp (RYLA) as being one of the major contributors to giving him a real sense of worth. From there, Frank successfully earned two college degrees and became a high school teacher in the newly incorporated Eastvale, CA.
To his surprise, there was no Rotary Interact Club yet at the new high school. Frank began the club in 2005. Since then, he has continued to serve at his district’s Rotary Youth Leadership Awards camp as a discussion group leader, staff member, and member of the interview panel that gives the same opportunities to high school students who were just like him.
Made an honorary member of the Eastvale Norco Rotary Club, Frank is a prime example of how far and deep a reach Rotary International has on people’s lives. As he was just one student selected to attend RYLA in 1997. Since then, Frank has conveyed the ideals of volunteerism and “Service Above Self” to hundreds, if not thousands of students in his local community.
Rotary District 5340 – San Diego County
Stephen Brown was a partner in a major California law firm that he joined in 1972. Recently retired, he now serves as one of 15 trustees of the Rotary Foundation and holds the position of Vice-Chairman of the Foundation. He served as Governor of Rotary District 5340 (San Diego, CA) during 1995-96.
Steve has traveled to Jalalabad, Afghanistan 12 times over the last 10 years developing educational programs for students from primary grades through the university level. These programs often use technology to advance classroom education sometimes involving students communicating with their counterparts around the world through the use of social media such as Facebook and Skype. In addition to receiving grants from the Rotary Foundation to support these programs in Afghanistan, he has arranged for grants from World Bank, USAID, NATO, U.S. Embassy-Kabul and the U.S. Dept. of State. Read more about Steve’s work in Afghanistan.
Steve has addressed Rotary audiences regarding The Rotary Foundation in many countries including Swaziland, Kenya, Uganda, Eritrea, Tanzania, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Mexico, UK, New Zealand, The Netherlands, Canada, Germany, United Kingdom, Australia, Russia, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. He has been the primary sponsor contact for Rotary’s humanitarian and education grants in many of these countries.
Steve has received The Rotary Foundation’s Citation for Meritorious and the Distinguished Service award. He has also received Rotary International’s Service Above Self Award.
Steve is a graduate of Washington State University and Stanford Law School. He and his wife Susan reside in the San Diego area where their two daughters also reside. Raised in Spokane, Washington, the Brown’s enjoy visiting their lake cabin in Eastern Washington State.
Larry Sundram immigrated to the United States from India when he was 20. After serving in the United States Marines Corps he embarked on a 30 year career in insurance and was President of Prudential Property and Casualty Company, an insurance company. He also is an entrepreneur, having created and managed several startups in the banking and insurance sectors and been active on their Boards.
In service to his community, Larry is a past Board member for the San Diego Water Authority and past President of the Rainbow Municipal Water District. He also has served as a Board Member for the Vista Chamber of Commerce. He volunteers teaching youth and seniors at Vista High School and at Fallbrook Senior Center.
As Rotary District 5340 Governor in 2011-12, Larry is a Presidential Citation winning Governor – one of only 15 in in the world. He is a member of the E-Club of the United Services. Larry has travelled extensively and participated in Rotary projects on several continents. His most touching experiences include participating in two National Immunization Days, serving children milk from a mechanical cow, and leading a Group Study Exchange team. He and Linda enjoy hosting visiting Rotarians and young people from all over the world.
Larry is a multiple Paul Harris fellow, Major Donor, Benefactor, Bequest Society Level 6, and a member of the Arch Klumph Society. He likes to follow current and international events. His wife Linda is past President of the Camp Pendleton Rotary Club – the first one in the world to have been chartered on a military base. She likes cooking, crocheting and puzzles. Together, they travel extensively with Rotary and grow avocados as a hobby.
Rotary District 5500 – Southern Arizona
Brad Sackrider is a member of the Fort Yuma Rotary Club in Arizona. A Rotarian for only two years, his hard work exemplifying Service Above Self is one to be emulated. A business manger, he particularly likes the four objects of Rotary. In is short tenure, he club has named him Rotarian of the Year, he has hosted International students in his home, has become a presenter to spread the work about Rotary and engaging his local press, and, has participated in international service projects in Sierra Leone, Mexico and India. He also is serving as a National Advisor for the Rotary Rose Parade Float Committee.
Besides his participation with Rotary International, he and his wife are donors to many local charities in Arizona including the YRMC Foundation, Amberly’s Place, The Yuma Community Food Bank, Yuma Fireman’s Child Burn Camp Fund, Hospice of Yuma, Yuma Catholic High School, and The Humane Society of Yuma. He also is an active ambassador for Shelter Box in Arizona.
In his spare time, Brad loves extreme hiking and some of his accomplishments include hiking the Grand Canyon Rim to Rim to Rim, 48 miles, in 21 hours non stop and Rim to Rim, 28 miles, in 8 hours. Brad has degrees from the University of Cincinnati and Ohio State University. His wife is a dentist and he says, “She does the drilling and I do the billing.” They have two young children.
Rotary District 5790 – North Central Texas
Paul Geisel grew up in the southern desert area of California. He graduated high school early and started college at 15 years old. Soon after, became a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar in New Zealand.
Paul’s career as a sociologist has allowed him to hold positions in the United States and Canada. He is Professor Emeritus from the School of Urban and Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Arlington where he was a professor for 37 years and was founder of the graduate program. He has an MA and PhD in Sociology from Vanderbilt University and his BA from Willamette.
Over the years Paul has consulted and worked with numerous local, national, and international organizations on issues of race, housing, city management, education, demographic trends, and social economics. He is widely published with over 190 articles, monographs, special reports, and books. Active in his community, Paul he has chaired numerous agencies and boards in the Fort Worth, Texas area.
Paul has been in Rotary for over 35 years and served as Governor for District 5790 in Texas. He has led Group Study Exchange teams to Argentina and Mexico. He has had the opportunity to share international projects in 20 countries including wheelchair distributions in Mexico and Panama, helping schools and clinics in Nicaragua, and launching a maternal and child hospital in Bangladesh. Paul is a Major Donor, Paul Harris Society Member, and an Arch Klumph member.
Rotary District 6630 – Northeast Ohio
John Turnbull began his career with Thunderstone Software, where he has worked for the past 20 years and is currently the president and CEO.
He joined the Rotary Club of Strongsville in 2009 and immediately felt at home with the Four Way Test and the motto of “Service Above Self”. He is currently the Secretary of the club, and has been involved with increasing the reach of all of the club’s major projects through technology and social media, including the annual Chili Open Golf Classic that has raised more than $2 million over the past 21 years for local and international organizations. John also served as chair of the charity selection committee for the Chili Open for the past two years. The club has also just had a matching grant project with RI approved to build water wells in the Philippines.
John Turnbull grew up in the United Kingdom and Switzerland where he attended high school with students from over 90 other countries, and moved to Cleveland, Ohio to attend graduate school. He has his masters in Computer Engineering from Case Western Reserve University. John and his wife Lori, an Ohio native, have one son.
Rotary District 6860 – Northern Alabama
Kenneth Schuppert lives in Decatur, Alabama where he and his wife Lynn are members of the law firm of Blackburn, Maloney and Schuppert, LLC. Ken’s principal areas of practice are corporate, real estate, probate and commercial litigation.
Active in his community, Ken is currently a Trustee and Chair of Parkway Medical Center. He has been president of the Decatur Jaycees, vice president of the Tennessee Valley Council of the Greater Alabama Council of the Boy Scouts of America and was presented the Silver Beaver Award in 1990. He has been a director and president of the Old Decatur Historic Association. In addition, Ken has served on the Boards of the Morgan County Cancer Society, Parents and Children Together, Chamber of Commerce, Princess Theatre and Carnegie Visual Arts Center.
Ken joined Rotary in 1982, was President of the Decatur Rotary Club and served as District 6860 Governor. His district duties included Assembly Co-Chairman, Deputy District Governor – Operations, Chair of the Foundation Annual Giving program, and Foundation Coordinator. Ken and Lynn have served as Rotary International President’s Representatives and as Rotary International Training Leaders. Ken has often served as a delegate and/or participant to the Rotary Councils on Legislation, served as a Rotary International Regional Membership Coordinator, and as Zone 30 Regional Rotary Foundation Coordinator. He is currently serving as a Member of the Rotary International Communications Committee and now as Vice Chair for 2010-11. On the Zone level, Ken and Lynn have been on the Executive Committee as Program Chair, as Arrangements Chair, as Governor-Elect Training Seminar leaders, as Institute Vice-Chair and as Institute General Chair. Ken is serving as a Director of Rotary International for 2011-13, a member of the Rotary International Strategic Planning Committee for 2012-13, Board Liaison to Constitution and Bylaws Committees for 2012-13 and Chair the Rotary International Board Council on Legislation Advisory Committee for 2011-13, and is the Rotary International Vice-President for 2012-13.
Ken was named an Outstanding Young Alabamian in 1989, and was presented The Rotary Foundation Citation for Meritorious Service in 2000, the Rotary International Four Avenues of Service Citation in 2001, and The Rotary Foundation’s Distinguished Service Award in 2006.
Ken was born in Madison, Wisconsin and received his B.A. from The University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee and his law degree from Cumberland School of Law of Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. Ken and his wife Lynn, also a Rotarian, are both active members of St. John’s Episcopal Church and have held many volunteer leadership positions with the church. They have one daughter and all are Paul Harris Fellows. Ken and Lynn are Rotary Major Donors and Bequest Society Members. Ken enjoys golf, swimming, gardening and “house restoration.”
The Rotary Rose Parade Float is not an official Rotary International program.