Patrick Naswell introduced Adrian Walker from Diplomat Specialty Pharmacy as our guest speaker today. Although Adrian is relatively new to his job as “conscience” (I believe his actual title is Director of Social Responsibility) of the organization, having taken the position last year, Adrain is not new to the area or the issues. Born and raised in Flint, he graduated from Carman-Ainsworth and then Michigan State University, worked as an intern for a senator in D.C., and then returned to this area to make a constructive impact. The excitement of working with Diplomat, a small business with 12 people working in it expanding  to become a large and burgeoning operation of approximately 1500 people in over a dozen states, and the privilege of working with Phil Shaltz and collaborating in a vision and expression of development and responsible community in this area was almost palpable in the meeting. Adrian spoke of the many innovations and enterprises of Diplomat and Phil Shaltz, but he particularly emphasized a new internship program that has brought 30 candidates into the area from all over the country to expose them to the reality of the community in which we all live and “spread the word” about the vitality and hope that run counter to the usual image of the Flint area perceived by non-residents. He also spoke about such endeavors as “Diplomat Field”, which is a Diplomat-sponsored restoration of the baseball site at Boys and Girls Club. (Sounds like a good fit for Club membership!)

“The dog ate my homework”:

Here is the personal confession: In a literal single stroke, I completely eradicated every single note that I made of today’s meeting, so I can only use my limited and diminishing memory to attempt a reconstruction for those who weren’t there; those who were among the 22 attendees can feel free to edit, amend, or correct the information in the newsletter.

“Revenge is sweet”:

Not only did Jim Carney propose a fine against those less fortunate, resulting in the supporters of a certain struggling football team paying fines in addition to being subjected to the “Neener. Neener!” stance of the “Hail to the the Victors!’ crowd. It is good thing that Spartan fans have developed thick skin!

“Don’t spit into the wind”:

When Greg Hilliker simply noted that Art Ridley did not seem to be getting his money’s worth out of this morning’s purchase of the Crown, Art quickly offset some of the cost with Greg’s fine money.

President Peter Venos had Steve Bentley pray before the morning meal, after opening in the usual manner, and the members shared in  a resounding “Amen!” at the end, raising the questions about motivation (to impress God? To celebrate the end of the preacher’s message? To emphasize the desire to raise money in tonight’s $5K Raffle for the good of the kids? To get to the business of eating?)

Cards were passed around (for members’ signatures) for Phyllis Braidwood (newly widowed by Jim’s passing) and Bob Gaines, who is dealing with some health issues.

Jobs, responsibilities, arrangements, and concerns about the $5K Raffle were discussed and kudos were given for the special efforts of Jeff Dennings, Dave Crabill, Bob Hale, and John Losinski in pulling off this major fundraiser.

Dan Crannie took the rights to this morning’s “50/50” drawing, and Art led in the Creed recitation.

Until next time, “Promise Yourself…”