Last Week's Meeting

A strong sense of community service reverberated through the Sept. 21 meeting, beginning with the induction of three new RCY members.
Business owner Ra’Cole Taltoan was introduced by her sponsor, Dionne Dowdy, who noted that Ra’Cole had been her collaborator and supporter since the launch of United Returning Citizens, which offers education and employment support to formerly-incarcerated persons. Ra’Cole has volunteered with voter registration and financial literacy programs, she added.
In her introduction of Solomon “Jack” Kravitz, Aundrea Cike Heschmeyer observed that Jack already is assisting with upcoming Ukraine fundraising efforts. Kravitz is now retired from the delicatessen and catering service he operated for decades.
Dominic Brown and Samantha Turner have known each other since grade school. It was Dominick who reached out to Samantha about joining Rotary and attended some social events to get a feel for the organization. “Let’s continue to be champions for change,” said Dominick, a shift leader at Ultium Cells LLC in Lordstown.
“Community coming together – that is Rotary and the symphony,” said speaker Raffaele Ponti, guest conductor of the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra’s classical music performance Sept. 25 at Stambaugh Auditorium.
Ponti was conducting in Youngstown for the second time. He led a Pops concert during his previous visit. He described YSO musicians as “technically talented” and said he chose music to reflect their strengths. The Naples (FL) Philharmonic Orchestra can sell out shows with guest artists, but “when they don’t have Tony Bennett, they only sell one-third of the house. They don’t put the focus on the community orchestra,” he said.
Ponti also discussed the symphony as a business model, in which the conductor is the CEO, the music score is the business plan, and the varied instruments, personalities and talents of the musicians are important. “They don’t realize their contributions until we come together,” he said. “It’s what Rotary does, too.”
In other news, The Rotary Club of Boardman has reserved a table at its annual Oktoberfest event to enable local Rotary clubs to raise funds for our district-wide Ukrainian relief effort. Volunteers will staff the booth and collect donations from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2 in Boardman Park.
Shifts will be in 2-hour increments. Two volunteers will be needed during each shift.

Please email Scott Schulick at or call 330-727-8507 if you can volunteer.