Rotary Hawthorn Details
Visit Rotary Hawthorn
Tuesday 12.30pm for 1.00pm.
 $36 including lunch.
Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club
489 Glenferrie Road
Kooyong  Vic  3144
Melbourne Australia.
Image  Newsletter 
Image  District 9800  
Meeting Speakers
Neil Cole:
Apr 24, 2018
Monash in Love, And War
Monash in Love, And War


'General Sir John Monash was a brilliant and exalted industrialist, war hero, and head of the Victorian SEC.
Yet, in 1930, although he was the PM’s choice, the Cabinet would not endorse him as the first Australian born Governor General.
Why? Because his private life was too unconventional.
Neil's play examines Monash’s  choices that he made, and the dissent they invoked. It also explores the Great War and its affects on morality, and otherwise.
Much admired by the King, adored by his troops and the public, Monash was a very great Australian. But he was also a driven man seized of extreme and adventurous passions. This was nowhere better evidenced than in his unrestrained romances with the three great loves of his life'.

Chair: Chris Hanson

Ian Fenton
May 01, 2018
The Men's Shed
May 08, 2018
David O'Halloran
May 15, 2018
Chairman, Board of Directors, Rec Link
Husna Pasha
May 22, 2018
Dr Amanda Scardamaglia
May 29, 2018
Charles Troedel: From Stone to Print
Dr Harry Blutstein
Jun 05, 2018
The Cold War Games
No Meeting
Jun 12, 2018
Changeover On Thursday 14th June (Night Meeting)
Why Join Rotary?



New memberships now available Enjoy the friendship, and the opportunity to give meaningful service to local and international communities, all in the sociable company of other respected community, professional and business leaders. Learn more.

ImageBrian Reid 0407 183 670

 Image   Contact us

Latest Rotary International
Former First Lady Laura Bush to speak at Rotary convention

Former First Lady Laura Bush to speak at Rotary conventionFormer First Lady of the United States Laura Bush, an advocate for literacy, education, and women’s rights, will speak at the 2018 Rotary Convention in Toronto this

Rotaract clubs honored for excellent service 2018

Top Rotaract honor goes to club that empowers women who have HIVRotaract clubs around the world earn awards for excellent

Final Exam

After a grueling year of preparation, two Rotarians and a Rotaractor face one last challenge before they can join the elite ShelterBox Response

The Villiers-Bretonneux battle in WWI is historic for Australian involvement.   A classic Australian pincer ploy involving  the 15th and 13 th AIF Brigades  around the German occupied French village proved successful.  
It was characterized by some heroic hand to hand (bayonet charged) night fighting and unfortunately  high causalities. 
In the context of WWI it was seen as a significant turning point and source of Australian pride.   It was a striking coincidence that many of the soldiers had seen service at Gallipoli and doubtless been aware of the April 25th date as they charged forward.
Pursuant to that event 100 years ago (April 24-25 1918) an enduring relationship between the people of that French village and Australia has established.   It is the site of classic memorials and picturesque cemetery(s) and according to guest speaker Dr Robert Webster OAM , President RSL Victoria, the foremost location(behind Gallipoli) for present day Anzac Day services in Europe.
Robert gave an extended address to Hawthorn Rotary and its  three cluster clubs at a special evening meeting.  Although the address  focused on the above battle Robert (himself a Vietnam vet and long term RSL advocate) gave a dramatic account of the war as seen by the common Australian combatant.   The audience became regularly hushed and pensive for periods as he told of casualty rates, fighting conditions , and the problems of integrating returned soldiers back home.  We were reminded and astounded  of the disruption to Australian society, to the outcome that about  10% of the population enlisted that being  40% of an eligible age group!
Thank Robert for such an interesting and moving account of another aspect of the Anzac Day occasion.
Dai Mason is a civil engineer with experience overseas in construction and consulting projects.   He continues with aspects of this work in is own business in Australia.  He is an E-Club Rotarian and with contacts to District 9640.
Notably his overseas activities in places in the tropics such as Indonesia and Papua New Guinea have been in many Malaria prone areas.  That connection touched him so that he is now Ambassador for an exciting project borne on the Gold Coast, namely the research into a unique Malaria Vaccine.   The lead scientist is at Griffith University, being Professor Michael Cook.  Cook's groups is linked into the Gold Coast Hospital.
The project is at the stage where human trials of a developed vaccine are to begin.   As always in these things funds are required and several Qld Rotary clubs via the broader RAM( Rotarians against Malaria) are partners in progressing the funding and project.   The link below provides a mechanism to get involved.
In the course of his address Dai told of some key facts.
  there are 214M cases of Malaria worldwide
  400,000 die each year
  Malaria is a parasite with capacity to manifest/change into various form.
  Thus far vaccines have limited success
The thrust of the Griffith team is for a vaccine to stimulate the body's own immune system to eliminate any/all phase of the parasite's presence in the human body.   Their test vaccine has thus far proved effective with animals and hence now the planned human trials on appropriately selected volunteers.   The next stage requires funds of  about $600, 000 much of which has already been acquired from many donation sources.



Yet again our last lunch meeting was different.   So last Tuesday at about 11.30 many members and friends suitably attired in walking gear and hats many of dubious quality met at the corner of Woods and Denhamn streets just overlooking the Hawthorn Bridge at the intersection of Church and Burwood roads.   Guide was to be the president of the Hawthorn Historical Society Elizabeth Love.  

Elizabeth was superb with some wonderful knowledge of the first days of the West Hawthorn community and fascinating photo images, maps and stories of that time.    Most intriguing was the comparison between those old images and the scene today.   One saw the banks of Yarra untouched, but with local vegetation and natural inclines. There were images of  the early settlers efforts to cross the river from the Melbourne side to Hawthorn with first a punt, then a wooden bridge.  It was hard to reconcile that against the backdrop today, with Melbourne skyscrapers providing the background to the present  bridge at the end of Bridge Road.

Stories of the lives of some key early residents added to the growing nostalgia in the minds of our members especially those of us who have spent most of their life time in Hawthorn and nearby.    In the course of the walk around the area some of us recalled past events about happenings and buildings with which they were involved.   

Elizabeth noted this.   She asked to remind everyone to email her with their information, photos and stories of their houses and life in the early days of Hawthorn and its surrounds to her.  The local historical group is always interested to add to its knowledge  bank.

Last speaker was Paul Devereux CFO at the new and growing international organization SmartMesh.
Paul set the scene of the thrust of this company by presenting the simple statistic that over the past several decades, start up businesses predicated on the venture capital model and subsequent growth have had a success/survival rate of only 14%!
Why?  Various reasons according to Paul but broadly categorized under tags such as executional failure, lack of transparency and poor liquidity.
There are many examples where validated ideas have just not brought "fruit" in getting to that stage of a sustainable mature business.
Whereas the systems on which SmartMesh prospers could only be described in general terms Paul brought the audience right up with their impacts with his example about the prospects for different transport methods in say even 10 years.  His question was "why have an asset which is not utlised 80%+ of the time--(the householder car)".  One extrapolation of this fact and technology advances raises a concept that electric car and vehicle sharing will likely proliferate in the future.  This means many new businesses starting off.
SmartMesh is targeting to help entrepreneurs in all and any future field, perhaps some transport focused ones like the latter example implies, develop by offering its expert advice, technology and services.

Guest speaker at the last meeting Sam Coffa has served Australia for more than 40 years as an outstanding athlete and sports administrator.  He arrived in Australia as a 12 year old lad in 1957.

Sam referred to a couple of his simple philosophies “any job do it well” and keep an “open mind” as always uppermost in any of his endeavours.  It showed in his reflections as he highlighted aspects of the current Commonwealth Games.

One notes that he represented Australia at the 1964 World Championships, the 1962 Commonwealth Games (then British Empire and Commonwealth Games) in Perth and the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games as a weightlifter.

Most relevant to us he is a long term Hawthorn citizen and instrumental in many community initiatives including city councillor and two times mayor.

Across a distinguished career as a sports administrator, Sam has held almost every leadership or administrative-level position within his chosen sport and the Australian Commonwealth Games Association.  In more recent times he was Deputy Chairman of the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games Bid Committee and 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games Organising Committee.

Now as Deputy Chair of the present committee for the Gold Coast Games we got an insight into their extent.  Alas Sam was a bit guarded about any predictions of gold medals (“it’s tough on the athletes and they all strive for their best”).

They run from 4 April until 15 April.  Events are intermingled for regular and para athletes.

18 Sports will be contested. 71 Nations will be represented ranging from Nauru pop 10,000 to India pop 1.2 billion.

Equal numbers of events for men and women.  Queensland has funded upgrading venues by $320M.

The tourism industry is dramatically enhanced.  Still 160,000 tickets of over one million issues are available.

6,500 athletes and officials will be involved.

After listening to Sam one was assured that the Commonwealth Games are still very relevant to this world.  The critical element is the athletes and their exploits, personal stories and interactions.  It will overshadow any of the perceived political disharmonies in the world.
Geoff Carr runs a series of "Star Safraris" in the Northern Territory.  The business is built around three portable telescopes (11 inch) and Geoff's enthusiasm for and knowledge of astronomy especially our Solar System.  The audience gained an appreciation of both and his skill to entertain a wide range of people with simple lay knowledge of the stars with a cleverly designed program.
Geoff who entered university at the age of 34 and embraced astronomical science at 40 told of his journey into this field.  His exploits extend to writing regular items on the topic in local NT newspapers under the caption the "Territory Stargazer".  A big part of his repertoire is the history of astronomy and here we learnt about early Greek astronomers who seemed to have a fair understanding of the facts, through the lesser Middle age periods of inactivity to the revolutionaries of Kepler and Galileo in reformation times.
Geoff's stated approach to imparting knowledge to his audience and doubtless many safari participants is to focus on "beauty and fun".  It came through in a very enjoyable presentation.
Auburn Bowls club through their member and our member David Pisterman opened up their facility for last Tuesday's meeting of Hawthorn Rotary.  Brian Reid was on the scene early collecting $10 from each who dared to attend the casual lunch.
Judging from the noise and extended pre formalities time the fellowship was strong.  Eventually President Katrina, complete with geese!, had to take control and in a succinct delivery reminded the meeting of the need for universal contribution to share the load on projects and admin.  Hence Quo Vadis!
Katrina raised some new projects/event inviting members to become involved, a market sourcing store, the forthcoming charter anniversary, a new citizens dinner and enhanced Facebook utilization.
Finally the lunch concluded after a few key reminders, namely the breadth of the Club Runner tool for simple things like member lists, the ongoing Trachoma 2020 Rotary project, and Foundation contributions.

It was a pleasure to have the Mrs Amanda Elliott as our guest speaker today.

Amanda rewrote the history books when she assumed office as the first female chairman of the VRC in February 2017.

And what a busy time to assume office with the new grandstand under construction.  Amanda reported that the stand is due to be completed early August.  Its running on time and on budget.

What a heritage belongs to Flemington Racecourse, from the time of the first Melbourne Cup in 1861, won of course by Archer.  And its not just famous names of the equine champions, but Flemington reflects our history as described in the photos and the stories of the Melbourne Cup and the spring carnival, whether if be in the depressions of 1930 ( the spirits of the people being lifted by the great feats of Phar Lap) or the 1880s and of course two world wars.

But now the Melbourne Cup is truly a great international event of racing, fashion, hospitality and tourism.

After hearing Amanda’s address today we can be confident that not only will the traditions be preserved but that the VRC and Flemington will stay ahead of the world as a racing club and in providing services and facilities at the cutting edge.

Professor Mary Galea guest speaker is a distinguished medical academic currently with the Department of Medicine at the Royal Melbourne Hospital.  Her CV is extensive with awards and patronage and support for organizations addressing in particular rehabilitation matters associated with brain and nervous system damage. 
Her topic broadly covered that concept of "Neuro Plasticity".   Skillfully using language and explanations aimed at the audience's level  she gave a most interesting and informative account of her and other research on aspects of the brain development and recovery from trauma.  Notwithstanding what came across as simple following Mary's clever descriptions the audience was taken back with the ability of medicine today to comprehend amazingly complex matters of the brain's functioning and employ rapidly advancing technology to improve it.
We learnt some things. First neuro plasticity is that concept that the brain can continually throughout life create new pathways within the nervous system and brain.    "Use it or loss it" is fact.    Continual stimulation can improve performance.   New learnings are good.   Mary explained that using "habitual pathways" is fine but do not develop the brain whereas creating new or alternate ones does.   This is important in stroke victims where lost functionality can be restored in part by such stimulation.  
Mary told of how much research is invoking external physical stimuli (rehab), and or electrical and magnetic ones to activate the brain to improve performance.  Her current given work concerns the use of the links to the brain via the tongue!  Electrical stimulation via this route has have some success in improving the "balance" of stroke patients.


Second Bite is a well established community service in Melbourne. Its mission is food recycling; that is, using food that would otherwise be wasted. It's about giving good, fresh ingredients new life in a commercial kitchen and, with a bit of creativity, turning them into healthy, hearty meals for people in need.

Rotary Hawthorn Pintrest
Upcoming Rotary Hawthorn Events
April 2018
Rotary Hawthorn Board
Vice President
President Elect
Club Services Director
Community Service Director
Youth & Vocational Director
International Service Director
Member Positions
Weeks, Jill
Front Desk
Morrison, Charles