Sailing Science Center News
April 2019
Vol. 2, No. 8

Welcome to the April issue of the Sailing Science Center News. The theme of this month's newsletter is Constructive Disagreement. While our natural tendencies are to avoid disagreement and protect our own point of view, disagreement can be a good thing, and is actually much better than having a room full of yes-men. A more thorough discussion appears as a blog post linked to our Leadership Corner at the end of this newsletter.

Meanwhile, the month of March was a particularly productive period with a pile of political pieces. It's the nature of the beast that much of what we're doing right now involves building the foundation for a large business. In the near future we look forward to having the balance of our energy tipped toward developing the museum exhibits we are all so excited about, but in the meantime many of these other facets are more urgent for securing our overall vision.

Unity is not a result of agreement, it’s a result of commitment.

– John C. Maxwell
Volunteer Spotlight - John Bechtol
Picture of John Bechtol
John Bechtol has helped us push our project forward through his no-nonsense approach to engaging stakeholders and his fearlessness in challenging the consensus in our meetings, exemplifying the kind of constructive disagreement that produces the best organizational outcomes. John is a politically-minded volunteer who likes to get involved and get things done. We met John at the St. Francis Yacht Club after our presentation there in January. During the Q&A period John asked if we had anybody aboard to help us navigate City politics, to which we responded that we were looking for that person, and John said I might be that person.

Born in Santa Rosa, John has an older brother and an older sister, but no kids of his own. Growing up John was influenced by his parents who were very active politically, an interest he continues to embrace today. In his college years he went to UC Davis where he studied Physical Sciences and Economics. After College he went to Sacramento looking for work and ran into a building contractor, which eventually led him to getting his General Contractor’s License and developing his own business doing residential construction.
Map of Lake Ralphine
Like most of our volunteers, John is a sailor. John’s first sailing experience was on a Thistle on Tomales Bay at age 5. Then, during his elementary school years he started sailing and racing a ten-foot pram, called a Melody, on Santa Rosa’s Lake Ralphine. In 1975 he started racing keelboats out of the Sausalito Cruising Club, and today John has a 30-foot Rawson Pilothouse Motorsailer in Sausalito that he has owned for eight years. Recently he started racing again as crew on Ron Young’s International One-Design, Youngster. John, it’s good to have a guy like you on the team to shake things up. Welcome aboard!
Melody Dinghy
TISC Lease
SF City Hall
On March 20 we went to San Francisco City Hall to testify before the City Budget and Finance Committee in favor of the Treasure Island Sailing Center's proposed 66-year lease. With a score of people speaking in favor of the lease, the issue won easy support from the Committee. See the video here, starting at 33:15.

Just to be clear, the Treasure Island Sailing Center (TISC) and the Sailing Science Center (SSC) are two separate entities, but our visions and destinies are closely linked. Getting the lease is a major milestone for TISC a 20-year old nonprofit that is the only community sailing center in San Francisco and helps them secure their future on Treasure Island for years to come.

This is also great news for the Sailing Science Center and our vision of putting people on the water aboard TISC boats after they exit the museum.

It is impossible to learn anything important about anyone until we get him or her to disagree with us.
– Sydney J. Harris
Office Painting
Painting the SSC Office
Over a series of days, helpful volunteers came to spruce up the SSC office in the Historic Administration Building on Treasure Island, shown below. The project is one or two painting days away from completion and should be done in early April. Pictured L to R above: Chris Davis, Morgan Davidson and Charlie Deist. Thank you to all of you, and especially to Volunteer Coordinator, Morgan Davidson, for managing the scheduling and invitations.
Treasure Island Administration Building
I think great leaders have a sense of humility about what they can achieve. Arrogance and hubris are recipes for disaster.

– Condolezza Rice
Corinthian Yacht Club
As announced in last month's newsletter, on March 7 we gave a joint presentation at the Corinthian Yacht Club, together with Bill Kreysler of the Facility for Advanced Sailing and Technology (FAST). About thirty people attended the talks describing the two projects and the opportunity to create a world destination for sailing education, knowledge and competition on the southeast corner of Treasure Island.
Matt Haney Town Hall
Town Hall with Matt Haney
Also on March 7, while three of our team members were at the Corinthian Yacht Club, four others were attending a Town Hall Meeting on Treasure Island with new District 6 Supervisor, Matt Haney. The purpose of the meeting was primarily to discuss housing and transportation, but it provided us with an opportunity to get a read on our newly elected official and to get our goals and vision in front of him and his aids.
US Sailing Logo
US Sailing Regional Symposium
Three SSC team members attended the US Sailing Regional Symposium on March 22 at the Sequoia Yacht Club in Redwood City. There were about two dozen total attendees at the event.

It was a great opportunity to connect, serve and increase our involvement with our country's governing body of sailing. We also took a few minutes at the end of the day to share about the Sailing Science Center with other folks in the room.
Call of the Sea Logo
Call of the Sea Collaboration
Among the contacts made at the US Sailing Regional Symposium was Call of the Sea Program Director, Dax Ovid. For those who are unaware, Call of the Sea is a nonprofit that runs educational tall ships, including the Seaward, and soon, the Matthew Turner.

We had been trying to connect with Dax for a while, and this proved to be the perfect opportunity. Dax had some great ideas for win/win collaborations that we'll be following up with soon!
Ship's Rigging
Looking aloft at the rigging on the Lady Washington after the US Sailing Regional Symposium.
Dax Ovid & Jim Hancock
Call of the Sea Program Director, Dax Ovid, and Sailing Science Center Founder, Jim Hancock, in front of the tall ship, Lady Washington.
Meeting at the Exploratorium
Exploratorium Sign
On March 29 we met with Deirdre Araujo, the Exploratorium's Manager of Volunteer Engagement. This was the third in our series of museum visits this year to help us learn how like-minded institutions are running their programs. As with all our visits, we came away with new ideas, insights and knowledge to help us in creating a world-class program.

Deirdre has been at the Exploratorium since 1995, so she really knows her business. She's a no-nonsense, straight shooter with a New York flare, which brought tremendous value to our visit. Thank you for your time and generosity Deirdre! Our visit fit perfectly with this month's Newsletter and the idea that group thinking tends to produce better ideas and results than individual thinking; that collaboration, sharing and challenging each others' ideas makes us all better and stronger. We look forward to building this relationship in the future.
March Volunteer Event - Sign Up & Sail
Six SSC volunteers showed up on March 31 for our first Sign Up & Sail event. They were hosted aboard Director George DeVore's gorgeous Norseman 400 sloop, Neptune's Car. They couldn't have had better weather, squeezing in their cruise less than a day before the next rainy weather.

We believe in both acknowledging and rewarding the energetic people who are making this project possible, and with nearly all of them being sailors, outings on the Bay are a natural way to do that. Thank You George, for hosting this event! And Thank You Morgan and Meagan for organizing it!
SSC Volunteers on a Boat
L to R: Craig Van Horn, Amanda Conner, Charlie Deist, Paul Kamen, John Bechtol, Carson Conner-Collado
George DeVore
SSC Director and skipper, George DeVore
George's Boat - Neptune's Car
Neptune's Car
Small Stuff
Volunteers Web Page

The Volunteers web page is now live and unhidden on the SSC Website. This will be the place to go to look for Volunteer projects and other volunteer information.
Forum Cartoon
Online Forum

Volunteer Anton Ross has created a new SSC online Forum. Initially this will be used to share ideas for exhibits. We will provide more information about the forum soon.
Leadership Corner
In any endeavor involving more than one person there is bound to be disagreement. How that disagreement is viewed and handled makes all the difference.

New Volunteers - We want to extend a hearty welcome to Dax Ovid , Mina Matsumoto and Olivia Malterre who joined the SSC ranks in March. You all embody the spirit of giving that makes our community a better place. Welcome everybody! (-:
That's all for this month.


Jim Hancock
President and Founder





*STEAM – Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math

James Hancock * Travis Lund * Jeff Owens * Meagan Strout * George DeVore
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