President Beth Russell opened the meeting to order and led the club in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. Jack Windish presented the invocation followed by Ralph Decker leading a rousing “It’s A Grand Old Flag”.
Michele Goad recapped the 8th Grade Award presentations then recognized this year’s 15 presenters and any presenters from past years. President Beth cited that 23 awardees had enrolled at Webster and 10 had graduated and there are 2 current students. Nick Angelo presented slides of his Guatemalan trip to dig a well. Very evident that the village was poor and sanitary water a blessing. In addition to the well the group provided good hygiene lessons.
Upcoming meetings include a visit to the St. Louis Zoo next Thursday (June 21), St. Louis City Mayor Lyda Krewson on June 28 and The Changing of the Guard on July 5. A note about the Zoo. Parking will be across IS64 at the old Deaconess Hospital grounds. Shuttles will run from 10:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. between the parking area and the Zoo’s South entrance.
Richard Warriner reminded all of the need for more contributions to the All In One fund. We have reached 61 percent of our $31,000 goal. The goal is important for us to support our charitable organizations. Also, volunteers are needed on June 19 for the Lift For Life Gym.
Sergeant-At-Arms Mike Motown Mosella cited our increasing use of social media to provide information about our Rotary Club. The exposure is important to support our Membership Drive which is headed Jeromy Fritz. SAA Mike then introduced our guests and visiting Rotarian.
Pete Milne was called upon to introduce our speaker, Susan Pollman. Pete’s last assignment prior to his retirement from the Air Force was with the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, NGA.
Ms. Pollman, a native St. Louisan, is program director for the “Next NGA West”, the new facility that will be built in North St. Louis. St. Louis was chosen after a lengthy selection process that include numerous options outside of St. Louis. This new facility will replace a 1918 building that is crowded, expensive to maintain and out of date for today’s and future missions of the NGA. The building is being designed for the next 100 years. The site at Jefferson and Cass Avenues provides access to high tech neighbors.
The site is currently owned by the City of St. Louis who will prepare the site. When prepared site ownership will be transferred to the Air Force. The Kansas City District Corps of Engineers will oversee construction of the building. The building will have three distinct areas; a learning center with public spaces, an Innovation Center for interaction with scientists and academiicans, and a Research Lab which will be restricted access due to dealing with classified issues.
The new facility will house about 3,700 employees when it opens in late 2024 or early 2025. Recruitment is a critical process as 60 percent turnover from now until opening is projected due to retirement of current employees. The staff is working with Ameren on power requirements although they will have internal power sources as their missions cannot have power outages. They are also working with neighborhood groups to be a good neighbor and not appear as a fortress. There is also the need to develop streets and enhance bus, metro and bike routes.
The 50/50 Jackpot continues to grow as Jack Windish won only $9.00. Hope remains for at least two more weeks as there will not be a drawing at the Zoo meeting.
President Beth closed the meeting shortly after 1:00 p.m.