February 17th , 2022
Westwood Village Rotary Club

Coming up on February 24th

Dr. Paul O'Reily

Dr. Paul O'Reilly, the incoming President of Thomas Aquinas College, will speak about the College, as a Great Books School in Santa Paula, CA.

Westwood Virtual Rotary Club Meeting for February 17th 2022

Pp Tom Barron opened the meeting by making a clanging noise thinking it resembled the WVRC bell, but it really didn’t.  PP Nancy McCready reminded us it was the 130th anniversary of the original Pledge of Allegiance before leading us all in the current pledge.  PP Steve Day once again “borrowing” from his Father-in-laws’ treasure chest read to us as the Thought of the Day, a poem by Dorothy Nolte titled, “Children Learn How They Live.” A very well thought out poem I plan to share with my families at WTV. Song Master PP Ed Gauld followed by singing, “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” in honor of our speaker of the day.

Our speaker for the day sure had a lot of fans following as we had family members and friends online with us.  This included PDG Ricardo (Taco) Loretta from District 5330, Mary Patt and Kevin Cooper, Jim Hackett, Hilary Loretta, Patti O’Keefe and Mary Ann Bertol along with, UCLA Rotaract Sara Huang.

Announcements for the Day included a reminder we will be meeting in-person (YEAH) March 3rd at the Luskin Center. Only if you like to pay a lot of money for parking you park in the Luskin Center. But, if you are a spendthrift when it comes to parking then please, park across the street at Lot 8, level 4 and pay for two hours of parking. Of course, if you want to carpool, the infamous Westwood Transitional Van will be in operation that day. Interested?? Contact PP Diane Good for a reservation. Remember to RSVP any guest you plan to bring.

John O’Keefe who is never short on words then introduced the speaker for the day, Mark Loretta.  Mark began by telling us he played major league baseball for 15 seasons between 1995 and 2009. He played for the Milwaukee Brewers, Houston Astros, San Diego Padres, Boston Red Sox, and our wonderful L.A. Dodgers. With the Dodgers in 2009 under coach Joe Torre, they made the playoffs but, lost to Philadelphia. Mark was an infielder with a batting average of .295, an All Star twice (2004 & 2006), won the Silver Slugger award in 2004 and, is on the Milwaukee Brewers Wall of Honor!

In 2001 with the Brewers, Mark volunteered after Manager Davey Lopes asked, to pitch one inning against the Cincinnati Reds in hopes of saving the depleted bullpen.  He faced five batters, gave up one hit and one walk and got two strikeouts on 19 pitches.  He was the first everyday player to pitch for the Brewers since 1991!  In 2004 with the Padres, he had a batting average of .335, ranking him third in the National League batting race behind Barry Bonds (.362) and Todd Helton (.347). He joined Tony Gwynn as the only San Diego player to have 200 hits in a regular season. He was voted the Padres team MVP in 2003 and 2004. In 2006 with the Boston Red Sox one of Mark’s most memorable days, he hit his first career walk-off home run against the Seattle Mariners on Patriots’ Day at Fenway Park. It was his first home run of the season. He hit his second walk off home run in 2007 while playing for the Houston Astros vs the Colorado Rockies with his team behind by one run and two outs with one man on base! 

Personally, Mark was born in Santa Monica attended St. Francis High School (after Tom Barron graduated from there) and Northwestern University. He has been married 23 years to Hillary, has two children and resides in San Diego, California where is works in Development for the San Diego Padres. 

  • Mark believes the current baseball strike will settle in the early part of March.
  • Not a fan of the designated hitter but does believe both Divisions should play under the same rules.
  • Mark feels the “shift” should be outlawed and fielders should be made to stay on the dirt (you need to know baseball to understand this conversation)!
  • Instant replay is taking too long.  There should be a fifth umpire in the press box to do a quick review of a disputed call.
  • Votes Barry Bonds as the greatest player in his prime; Todd Helton best hitter, John Smoltz & Randy Johnson best pitchers.
  • Loves Joe Madden and, thinks Walker Buehler is the best pitcher in the West.

When Mark was 7 years old & a huge fan, he dressed as a Dodger wearing #5.  When he signed a contract with the Dodgers in 2008, his uniform number was #5!! A coincidence or, fate?? I believe it was fate.

Mark Loretta was a great speaker with wonderful stories. There is so, so, so, much more to his career and life story that I suggest you go online and Wikipedia him.

PP Diane

WVRC 2020/2021 Leadership Team
President: Nancy McCready
Treasurer: Terry M. White
Youth/Vocational Service: Phil Gabriel
Director/Peace: PP Marsha Hunt
Foundation: PP Steve Day
Global Scholarships: PP Chris Bradford
Webmaster: PP Ron Lyster
Director/Merchant Minute: PP Mark Rogo
District Governor: Bette Hall
Immediate Past President: Diane Good
Secretary: PP Diane Good
Community Service: Aaron Donahue
International Service: Nevin Senkan
Program Chair: PP Tom Barron
Membership: PP Mike Newman
Director/Social Media: PP Aly Shoji
Windmill Editor: P Nancy McCready
Assistant District Governor: Michael Lushing