Club Information
Come visit the Rotary Club of Fernandina Beach, doing good things since 1926!
Fernandina Beach
Service Above Self
We meet Wednesdays at 12:00 PM
Story and Song Bookstore Bistro
(self-serve lunch begins 11:30)
1430 Park Avenue - Second Floor
Fernandina Beach, FL  32034
United States
DistrictSiteIcon District Site
VenueMap Venue Map
Executives & Directors
Community Service
immediate past president
Birthdays & Anniversaries
Member Birthdays
Coach Benson
August 1
Rick Campana
August 1
John McClane
August 6
Dorothy Lord
August 15
Foy Maloy
August 28
Spouse Birthdays
Dick Connelly
August 7
Darrell Holcomb
August 12
Aaron Bean
August 22
C. Buck
Dolly Buck
August 24
Join Date
John McClane
August 1, 1981
38 years
Mary Ruark
August 2, 2017
2 years
Dorothy Lord
August 4, 2010
9 years
Rick Campana
August 8, 2018
1 year
Rick Keffer
August 8, 2007
12 years
Timothy Flanagan
August 15, 2018
1 year
Laureen Pagel
August 19, 2009
10 years
Russell Hampton
ClubRunner Mobile
This Weeks Speaker
Bruce Horowitz
Will talk about his new book: 
"Gamble Rogers: A Troubadour's Life?"
The annual Gamble Rogers Festival in St. Augustine kicks off on Friday, May 3rd
Bruce Horovitz is an award-winning journalist and an entrepreneur with extensive experience in the nonprofit and business communities. He is a graduate of the Boston University's School of Public Communication.

In this book, Bruce Horovitz tells the story of how Rogers infused Florida's rapidly commercializing landscape with a refreshing dose of homegrown authenticity and how his distinctive music and personality touched the nation. As a college student, motivated by personal advice from William Faulkner to stay true to himself, Rogers broke away from his family's prestigious architecture business.

Rogers was a skilled guitar player and storyteller who soon began performing extensively on the national folk music circuit alongside Pete Seeger, Doc Watson, and Jimmy Buffett. He discovered a special knack for public radio, appearing frequently as a guest commentator on NPR's All Things Considered. Rogers was known across the country for his intricate fingerpicking guitar style and rapid-fire stage act. Audiences welcomed his humorous homespun tales set in the fictitious Oklawaha County, which was based on places from his own upbringing and populated by a cast of unforgettable characters.

His stories evoked rural life in Florida, celebrated the state's natural resources, and called attention to life's many small ironies. As Florida was experiencing colossal growth embodied by the new Kennedy Space Center and Disney World, Rogers's folksy style cheered and reassured listeners in the state who worried that their traditional livelihoods and locales were disappearing.

Horovitz shows that even beyond his genius as a performing artist, Rogers was loved for his compassion, integrity, connection with people, and courage.

Rogers displayed these widely admired traits for the last time when--on a camping trip to the beach--he tried to save a drowning stranger despite back problems that made it almost impossible for him to swim. This heroic effort led to his untimely death. The life of Gamble Rogers is a window into an important creative subculture that continues to flourish today as contemporary folk artists take on roles similar to the one Rogers established for himself. A modern-day troubadour, Rogers delighted in entertaining audiences with what was familiar and real--by championing the ordinary people of his home community who were closest to his heart.

Weekly News Bulletin Editor
Fellow Rotarians:
Sadly, I am leaving the Island and will be done with my duties as your editor of our Weekly News Bulletin.  I committed to Ron to be the Editor while he was President.  I didn't know that he would do two years in a row...LOL
I have come out of retirement to take on a position as the Director of Operations for the Panucci family with all their holdings, projects, etc. including managing several Orthodontic Practices and a 270 acre farm with all the animals and writing grants in WV near the Greenbrier.  I was given an offer I just couldn't refuse. 
We are looking for someone to take over this responsibility as soon as possible. Like Ron said, Roger set the bar high as an Editor and I'm thankful he complimented me often for a job well done.  This isn't difficult if you love to write and everyone is responsible to get you there information for you to do so.  You will love it once you get rolling with it and you will personally get to know all the speakers by communicating with them.....great exposure.
I will continue to do the weekly bulletin until someone steps up to the plate to do this but only for a short time. I will be home for a short time in mid May and can meet with someone to show them the Club Runner Site if it's still being used (Ron told me changes are coming).
I want to thank all of you who regularly complimented me during my time as your Editor.  I've enjoyed it, met some great people, worked with a lot of great people and was honored to serve under Ron Heymann.  Thank you all and I will surely miss everyone of you!!
I will return from time to time to play golf and visit friends after 21 years on the Island and I will surely stop by for a visit with the club!
Yours in Rotary,
Frank Gagnier
Last Weeks Meeting Highlights

President Ron Heymann called the meeting to order.  



Dr. Page lead the club singing a patriotic song!



Recited our "Pledge of Allegiance"


Followed by singing: 


An excellent invocation by Rotarian Joe Hastey


Secretary, John McAfee Report:

In attendance were 29 Club Members36 total attended the meeting.


Honorary Rotarian Members in attendance -Larry Myers, Jim Hicks and Frank Ridley


Visiting Rotarians:  Bill Eisley of the Bar Harbor Club, Maine pro tem - Bruce Heggenstaller and Paul Hunt from the Amelia Island Sunrise Club.


Visiting Guests: Cathy De La Combe, guest of her husband Jeff, our newest club member.


50/50 Jack Pot:  @$ 339 - Rotarian Art Keith Strausburg had the drawn ticket and pulled the "3 of Spades"  ! 32 cards remaining?


Boy Scouts: $36

Shelter Box: $26



Sergeant at Arms, Larry Melnick:

No Report -


President-Elect, Antoinette Richter:       

No Report -



John Howard, Community Services Report:

No Report -


John Boylan, Director of Youth Services Report:

No Report -


Kris Meyer, Public Relations Report:

No Report - 



Barbara Gingher, Fundraising Report:

No report -


Pam Crouser, Club Membership Report:

No Report -


Nick Klein, Club Social Events Report:

No Report -


President Ron Heymann, Club Report: 


Longtime Rotarian Roger Ganzel passed away late last week.  He had been ill - but in communication with the Club though several club members.    Many long time Rotarians remember Roger for his work on the News Letter, setting a high bar for Frank!  Others remember him as a driving force behind our Shelter Box efforts.  Through Roger's persistence and dedication, our Club is ranked 3rd among Rotary Clubs in the number of Shelter Boxes sent to crisis areas, with nearly 40 boxes funded (Silver Medal territory is 2000+/- Shelter Boxes)   I came to know Roger by hanging around after Club meetings at the Florida House Inn - and can't think of a more humble and caring servant of humanity.  One of his last pastoral acts was performing the wedding ceremony for Vince Cavallo's step-daughter.  Roger truly embraced "Service Above Self" - and will be missed.

Service is Tuesday from 5:00 - 7:00 at Oxley Heard.


Debra Connelly, Club Foundation Report:

Deb has reached out to the club looking for volunteers to join he Club Foundation Committee.  Please see Deb if you are interested in helping her out if you are not already on a committee. Looking for some support. Thanks
Rotarian Roger Ganzel
Roger A. Ganzel

Pastor Roger A. Ganzel, born November 4, 1939 in Neenah, Wisc., passed from this life into life eternal on April 25, 2019.

Roger leaves his wife, Diane (Lindner) Ganzel; his daughter, Lisa Angil of Amelia Island, Fla., and her children, Elizabeth Angil and John Michael Angil; his son, Mark Ganzel (Deborah) of Linneus, Maine and their children, Joshua, Tabetha, Autumn, and Alexis.

Pastor Ganzel was predeceased by an infant daughter. He is also survived by a brother, William Burns (Kathy) of Middleton, Wisc.; a sisters, Kathleen Hedberg of Houston, Texas and Connie Griesbach (Al) of Appleton, Wisc.; and many cousins, nieces, and nephews.

Schools that he attended include Menasha High School, Menasha, Wisc.; Carthage College, Carthage, Ill.; and Northwestern Lutheran Theological Seminary, Minneapolis, Minn., where he earned a Master of Divinity in 1963. Between his second and third year of seminary, he married his lifelong partner, Diane.

Upon ordination in 1964 as a new pastor, God chose a somewhat unique path of ministry for him, that of being a church/developer.  Over the next 40 years, he and his wife helped establish five new congregations: Ascension Lutheran Church in Green Bay, Wisc., Christ the Victor Lutheran Church in New Berlin, Wisc., Peace Lutheran Church in Waunakee, Wisc., Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Dublin, Ohio, and All Saints Lutheran in Hudson, Fla.

He retired in January 2002, when he and his wife moved to Amelia Island, Fla. In retirement he continued to serve the church in various ways. Since 1974, Pastor Ganzel has been a member of Rotary clubs and was a member of the Rotary Club of Fernandina Beach. In Boy Scouts, he held the rank of Eagle.

His avocation interest had been architecture, successfully having designed and built passive-solar. His lifelong interest for study was history, which he used to make sense of everything he didn’t understand, including the Bible.

Donations in his memory may be made to Prince of Peace Lutheran Church here on the island or Shelter Box USA through the Rotary Club of Fernandina Beach.

The family will receive friends from 5-7 p.m. Monday, April 29, 2019 at Oxley-Heard Funeral Home in Fernandina Beach, Fla.




Roger Ganzel's last speech to our club:
In a Polarization Pickle
Roger Ganzel at Rotary 06-07-17
            Pierre approached me well over a month ago to speak today. He was aware that I hadn’t spoken to the club since 2004, felt I was overdue, and he wanted to fill his dance card for June to end his term as program chair. I said, “Yes, but let me see first if I can come up with a good topic.” Only a few days later I said, “I’m ready. I have a historical perspective that will hopefully help us understand the pickle our country is in with polarization gridlock.
            I do have such a historical perspective on this, and it reaches all the way back to the Renaissance. Not that I’m suggesting it might be a scapegoat, it’s not, but this epic event which started in France in the latter half of the 15th Century, 550 years later definitely has some of its fingerprints on what we are experiencing today.
            History is not something that you can change, even though personal interests have many times tried to do just that. History is what it is, but history can be extremely helpful if you look at the perspective of where you were, how you got to where you are now, and where you might better direct the future. That last step, related to the future, is pretty much impossible to approach without becoming political. All of us are committed to Rotary not being the time or place for that, so in the spirit of the current series of TV commercials, I am prepared to tell you I am only a history monitor, not a history maker.
            That doesn’t mean the polarization cannot be broken, but I haven’t figured out how to do that yet anyway. No one has intentionally orchestrated our falling into it, but I think today will let you see how we almost unconsciously accomplished it regardless. I am not sure it has anything to do with our DNA (though it could be related), but it is definitely tied to how we are shaped and differ as people. They say our personality takes form for the most part in the first few years of our life and it’s rare that there would be major shifts the rest of our life.
            Having said all this, we now come to the nuts and bolts of what I have to share. We do know that all of us lean one way or the other in how we think, how we make our decisions, and all sorts of things. Those who lean one way base pretty much everything on reason, logic and intellect. Those leaning the other way base theirs on feelings, emotions and experiences. The challenge, the problem, whatever you want to call it, comes with leaning harder one way or the other. The more you lean one way the less trust, tolerance or credibility you are willing to attribute to the other side. It also means you are more likely to reject what is important to the other side. Feelings and experiences today are used to deny the facts and logic of a situation. Facts and logic are held up today as a way to over-ride people’s feelings and experiences.
            Let me share with you a story that might approach this whole subject safely. Three businessmen teamed up one week in their venture and had a very successful time of it. They decided late in the week before they’d return home, they would stay a night at the Ritz Carlton on Amelia Island and get in a round of golf.
            They went to the front desk and asked for a suite that would accommodate the three of them. The desk clerk said it would be $300 for the night. So, each of the three put $100 on the desk and the bellhop took them up to their room. Well, that day had started new seasonal rates and the suite was supposed to be $250. Not sure just when the desk clerk remembered this, but he felt guilty. He called the bellhop over, gave him 3 10’s and a 20 and told him to return it to the men in their room. On the way up the bellhop looked at the money in his hand and was puzzled how to divide it between the three men, so he decided he would just give each of them a 10 and pocket the 20. Who would know?
            So, here’s the situation. Each of the men got $10 back, meaning that now each of them had paid $90. 3 times 90 is 270, the bellhop has 20 in his pocket. That makes 290, where is the other 10 bucks?
            The logic, facts and intellect people say, “That’s simple. Look at the facts: there is $250 in the desk drawer, each of the 3 men has $10 in their pocket and the bellhop has $20 in his...that’s $300.” The feeling, emotions and experiences people say, “I don’t care what you say the facts are; look at what has happened, what has been experienced. Three men have paid $270. There is $20 in the bellhop’s pocket. We know $10 is missing and we have to find it. We are going to keep looking for it until we do.”
            All of this so far merely describes the deadlock polarization we are in today. My hope is if we can step back and look at our predicament with historical perspective, we might just start to find a way out of it. I personally believe the only solution, if there even is one, will come from this perspective...looking at where we have been, seeing how we got to where we are now, and finally, search for the key to change the future.
            Prior to the Renaissance, civilization was rather primitive. In fact, much of the Medieval Age constituted what was called The Dark Ages. As to the issue of our two ways of thinking, there wasn’t any. Thinking back then was pretty much controlled by a primitive cause and effect.
            The Renaissance, on the other hand, was the first thing to happen in history, at least in the western world, that shaped all thinking. The reason it was able to do that was because it was the first thing to impact absolutely every aspect of society. We still see all the time the impact it had on art and music, but it was far more extensive than that; it did affect every single aspect of society... socially, psychologically, economically, religiously, scientifically, philosophically, politically, artistically, absolutely every aspect of it.
            How people thought going into the Renaissance was kind of like the analogy of a sleeping pendulum. With the Renaissance the pendulum was given a swift, hard kick moving it all the way up onto the side of reason, logic and intellect. It was called The Age of Enlightenment and it held there, for just over 100 years. During that period of time everything that had to do with feelings, emotions and experiences was put down in great distrust.
            This is where the pendulum really proves to be a great analogy, because for every action there is a reaction. At the end of the 100 plus years, suddenly there was a mistrust with reason, logic and intellect and everything shifted completely to the other side, moving trust completely to feelings, emotions and experiences. This swing of the pendulum lasted barely 100 years and was called The Age of Pietism.
            As that approximate 100 years ended, you guessed it, the pendulum swung back to the other side, this time for only 75 years. Each swing is not as far, a bit less intense, and for a shorter span of time. This swing was called the Age of Reason and was the time in which our nation was born.
            The next swing to the other side is down to barely 50 years under the name this time Revivalism. This is the last swing that gets a name attached, and notice, it wasn’t even called the Age of Revivalism, just Revivalism. All of these swings, like the Renaissance, had each impacted to some degree more or less all of society. The swings, however, do go on; we can detect them, but as the swings shorten so does their impact. The last quivers of the pendulum ended in the 1960’s and the Modern Age of History that began with the Renaissance, lasting 500 years, came to an end. What erupted in the period just following was a huge amount of social unrest, the war in Viet Nam, racial and gender unrest, sexuality. In the context of our analogy groups of people were trying to restart the pendulum and tug it in their direction. Polarization was starting to divide our country in half.
            At the same time in the mid-60’s the Postmodern Age began, and we are now 50 years into it. There are huge contrasts between the two historical ages, most of which we are aware of, but most of which we also probably have never really given much thought.
            Even the “way” of thinking changed, from linear to multi-track. The last big sitcom of the Modern Age was the Brady Bunch based on linear thought. Each episode opened identifying a problem, and as the episode unfolded, step on step it dealt with it. Generally, the episode ended with some moral message or conclusion. The first big sitcom of the Postmodern Age was Seinfeld, multi-track thinking. I still remember when I first saw it I thought, “Those people aren’t even listening to each other.”
            The knowledge explosion has also fed into this mix. All of knowledge from the beginning of time through a.d.1900 doubled between 1900 and 1950. Then knowledge in 1950 doubled again by 1975. Last time I checked it was redoubling every 3 years, scientifically every 7 years. It may be less now...haven’t checked.
            Gutenberg’s invention of the printing press in 1440 kicked off the Modern Age. The invention of the computer kicked off the Postmodern Age. The knowledge explosion started earlier but we would have soon been plowed under without the computer.
            In conclusion, the closest I will come to making a political assertion here is this: the Democratic Party leans toward feelings, emotions and experiences, the Republican Party toward reason, logic and intellect, the liberals and the conservatives at least, each tugging on the pendulum, trying to pull it in their direction. I do not profess to have answers, but I will try to entertain questions. Just remember, I am only a history monitor.
His love of history and his common sensible perspective on life when he spoke will surely be missed!
Roger read my wife Susan's book, "A Dog Named Cowboy," and wrote his perspective of the read to Sue which ended up being published in her book.  He had such a way with words.  Sue and Roger communicated about her quotes from the bible in her book and he loved the way she used them relative to all of God's creatures.  I loved talking with him....the wisdom he had and always willing to share was special for sure!
I will miss him terribly.
Frank Gagnier