Brigitte Ross as our newest member. She was inducted on February 15th by membership chair Kian Ameli and her sponsor and President Beri Kasper. Brigitte grew up in a small town in northern Germany and has a sister who is three years older and still lives in Germany. After graduating from high school she spent a year in the US (in Potomac, MD) working as an Au-Pair, taking care of 3 kids. Brigitte says it was a wonderful experience as she was able to explore Washington D.C., travel to New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, the West Coast including Los Angeles, Grand Canyon, Las Vegas, San Francisco, and many other places.
She returned to Germany and went to college in Baden-Baden to study languages and business administration. Brigitte graduated in 1993 and went to work for WR Grace near Hamburg, Germany as an office administrator in the R&D department for can coatings and lacquers. As working in Germany did not give her sufficient opportunity to use her language skills she moved to Brussels, Belgium in 1998 and started working for Vetrotech Saint-Gobain a fire rated glass manufacturer. In 2000 Vetrotech sponsored her to relocate to Seattle, WA to open up their North American sales and manufacturing facility in Auburn, WA. Within in the first month of being in Seattle she met Jim Ryberg. He ran his own acoustical ceiling company and was installing the ceilings in her office. She turned down his to buy her a coffee but did not turn him down a couple of weeks later when he offered to buy lunch. They have been married for 11 years now. In 2006 they moved to Brussels where she took a position with the European Government but decided to return to the US in 2009.
Jim and Brigitte have been in the Bay Area since 2012 and own a house in downtown Concord which they continue to renovate bit by bit. They do not have any children together but he has a 30 year old son and two girls in their twenties.
The Patriots Jet Team, that is. Ed Daley visited the Club and showed us some incredible videos of his Team in action. Have you ever seen the Blue Angels? Well, the Patriots do the same thing. And they are located in Byron, CA! They perform their well practiced air routines at air shows all over the country including right before the Blue Angels during Fleet Week in San Francisco every October. They also have a non-profit Foundation dedicated to inspiring the youth of America with a love of aviation and aerospace. They believe students today need and deserve every encouragement to learn and apply STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) along their educational paths. You can find out more about the Patriots Jet Team and the Patriots Jet Team Foundation by visiting their website, http://patriotsjetteam.com/.
For the past several years we have picked fruit on Super Bowl Sunday. This year, with rain predicted on Bowl day several members turned out to pick lemons a week early. Newest member Rocky Gernhardt did a fine job on his first fruit picking as did Brigitte Ross, who by the way is not even a member, yet. She really wants to impress! Last but certainly not least, President Beri Kasper led the group in picking 200 pounds and donating to the Monument Crisis Center. The fruit picking is always free of charge to the homeowner. However, sometimes they are so thankful to be able to not only get their trees gleaned and ready for new blossoms but be able to donate to people who can use the fruit that they will donate to our Charitable Fund. Such is the case of homeowner Rita who also took all these fantastic photos of our Rotarians hard at work. All are truly following the Rotary motto “Service Above Self”. Thank you, Rita for the fruit and for the boost to our Charitable Fund, which will, in turn let us provide things like scholarships to deserving DVC students, toys for Cambridge kids, and food gift cards for families in need. Seems like a Win, Win in this Super Bowl!
With this years total of 3415 lbs, of fruit picked, the Rotary Club of Concord-Diablo’s Picker Squadron has passed 25 Tons for the food bank and pantries in Concord since the program started in 2009. “There is no Scurvy in Concord or the Valley since we started this program” jokes Edi Birsan the founder of the program and one of its main ‘Pickers’ while also being Vice Mayor of the City. Rotarians as well as their families and guests are invited to help with the mission of the Picker Squad. Contact Casilda Gonzales 925 338-5775 or Edi Birsan 925 798-3537 to get your fruit picked or to volunteer. Thanks to Edi and Casilda for organizing our gleaning dates!
Patricia Ramirez completed her blue badge requirements closely behind Wendee and was rewarded with her official badge by President and sponsor Beri Kasper and membership chair Kian Ameli. Congratulations Patricia on a job well done!