Decatur Rotary Spoke 'n Wheel graphic
March 6, 2009 Edition decatur
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by Susan Cobleigh

Congratulations to Melissa Forgey for a great job as your editor for November through February, and to Lyn Menne for her outstanding turn as editor from July through October. I'll be serving as newsletter editor through the month of June.

Don Hooten is your reporter for March, and Richard Puckett reports in June. John Bennett and Bill Funk will share reporting duties in April.</>

Please help! We are in need of a reporter for May. If you are willing to sharpen your pencil and take notes, please contact one of the editors (Lyn, Melissa or me). You don't have to sign up for the entire month. Whether it's one week or several, you'll be a hero!

In this Issue
  • Center for Civil & Human Rights Partnership
  • Happy Birthday To You
  • Around the Room
  • Upcoming Programs

  • Center for Civil & Human Rights Partnership
    Doug Shipman

    Doug Shipman

    President Mark

    President Mark

    by Don Hooten

    Todd Speed gave the invocation, and Daren Wang introduced our speaker, Doug Shipman, Executive Director of the Center for Civil and Human Rights Partnership (CCHR). Mr. Shipman is a former resident of Glendale Avenue and is hoping to move back to Decatur.

    Mr. Shipman's presentation included three areas of discussion - the first being the context in which any current civil rights project is discussed. There are now more of our population that were born after 1970 than were born before, and these people have no direct memory of Dr. King's words and that time of racial discrimination. Also, our area is diversifying at a fast rate, with most of the growth coming in the Latino and Asian community. Atlanta, because of its history with the civil rights movement, is the place where race and ethnicity should be studied.

    Mr. Shipman's second point of discussion was an explanation of what is the CCHR. It is to be a place that will stitch together the story of the civil rights movement and how it still impacts the world today. The civil rights movement represents a universal struggle that happened in one time period, but continues to reverberate throughout the world today from the collapse of the Berlin wall to the struggle for women's rights in many parts of the world. The CCHR will not be a museum. It will be a place of activity, dialogue and performing arts and an educational institution for all. It will also have a component that reaches out to people who don't visit through online and television programs. The structure will be built on land donated by the Coca-Cola company, adjacent the Georgia Aquarium and the World of Coca-Cola. Five finalists for the building design have been chosen and the design team will be selected by April 1st. Completion is anticipated in early 2012.

    Mr. Shipman then discussed what this institution will do for the community. It is expected to have an economic impact of $200 million during construction and $1 billion in the first ten years, drawing 800,000 visitors per year. It will draw people from all over the country, including many family reunions and will serve as a partner with local academic institutions. The CCHR will have a ticket price of $12 and will be open one day a month for free. It will also offer thousands of free visits for school kids.

    More information can be found at

    In honor of Mr. Shipman's being Friday's speaker, President Mark presented Road to Freedom, containing photos from the civil rights movement, to the DeKalb Library System.

    Photographs by Mark Burnette

    Happy Birthday To You

    • March 14: Rhonda Davidson
    • March 17: Lyn Menne
    • March 17: Henry Wall
    • March 21: Crawford Lewis
    • March 23: Fred Turner
    • March 24: George Ingram
    • March 26: Bryan Downs
    • March 24: Byron Saunders

    Around the Room
    Book Presentation

    Daren Wang (seated) introduced Doug Shipman shown receiving a book in honor of his visit with us.

    Speaker with Soens

    Speaker Doug Shipman with Robert Soens

    Upcoming Programs

  • March 13: Tom Gordon (Yerkes) and Deb Gust (CDC)
  • March 20: Tyese Lawyer and Gayle Gellerstedt (Our House)

  • Rotary logo

    Welcoming Guests

    Doug Torbush introduced our visiting Rotarians: Ken Hodges of Albany, Cheryl Mann of the Buckhead Club, Tom Harrison of Rockdale County and Pete Pfeiffer from Cordele.

    A guest of the club, introduced by President Mark, was Nicole Jones, with The Metro Atlanta Arts and Culture Coalition, who accompanied our speaker.

    Officers for Decatur Rotary:

    President - Mark Hastings

    President-Elect - Bryan Downs

    Past President - David Ewing

    Secretary - Vee Nelson

    Treasurer - Jason Conn

    Sergeant-at-Arms - Doug Torbush

    District Governor - Ted Propes


    Past Presidents celebration will include a reception on March 26th at the Druid Hills Golf Club and a ceremony honoring our past presidents at our meeting on March 27th.

    The Group Study Exchange (GSE) reception will be co-hosted with the Dunwoody Club and held on Sunday, April 5th, at our meeting place in the Old Courthouse. Our visitors are arriving in Atlanta from District 3630 in South Korea.

    Brian Cayce and wife Genia were congratulated on the birth of their daughter, Elsa Kathryn, on February 21. Jim Topple is the proud grandfather.

    We received a letter of thanks from the DeKalb High School for Technology for a member of our club presenting apples to their teachers and staff on teacher appreciation day.

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      Join us! Decatur Rotary Club meets each Friday at noon at the Old Courthouse on the Square in downtown Decatur.

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      The four-way test of the things we think, say or do:

      Is it the TRUTH?

      Is it FAIR to all concerned?

      Will it build GOOD WILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?

      Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?

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      Directions: Old Courthouse on the Square

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      phone: 404-371-4444