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Windmill for Feb 9th, 2023

By VP Benjamin Fisher

Mobolaji Olambiwonnu is an award-winning director with his B.A. in Communications from University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) and M.F.A. from the American Film Institute (AFI's) directing program. He has been directing branded content, commercials, corporate videos and documentaries for the past 20 years, for clients such as HBO, Lion's Gate, Discovery Channel, PBS, LA Metro, Gehry Partners and Sony. He has earned 3 Hermes award, an international Videographer award and a Director's Guild of America (DGA) award for his work. His strength as a director is in telling a moving and relatable story centered around products, services or causes with a backdrop that is visually stunning and on budget.


Mobolajii is most known for producing “Ferguson Rises (2021). It follows the life of Michael Brown, Sr. in the aftermath of his son’s death in 2014 who was shot and killed by a police officer sparking the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement.  Mobolaji wanted to make this movie for his son who one day would become a man asking his dad what he did for the BLM movement.


If there was a central goal in making this movie, it wasn't cracking the case of the crime. Mobolaji wanted to show that the community as a whole, in their own methods and actions, had a commitment to Ferguson and making sure it survived and remained whole.

"I wanted to show that they all shared this common interest in having a better community and having a better society for their children. Instead of just seeing the things that disconnected us, I wanted them to see the things that connected us as well," he said.


When asked what message that audiences should take away from the film, Olambiwonnu didn't hesitate for a second. "For me, it's finding purpose in the pain. That's the universal message. When we look at Michael Brown and the citizens of Ferguson, they are trying to make meaning out of chaos. I wanted my son to be left with that message when he's old enough to watch this movie. After 400 years of dealing with racism and oppression in this country, there's resilience and there's a commitment to finding purpose in the pain."


Ferguson Rises is an important movie to see and relevant to what is happening in America today. It is a fair assessment from both sides. If you have not seen it, you should make a point to do so.


Shout out to PP Aly Shoji for leading the pledge, Jim Crane for “Thought of the Day” and, PP Steve Scherer and PP Ron Lyster for leading the crowd in singing “God Bless America.”


  • This Thursday's WVRC meeting, February 16th, 2023, will be held at Hillel located at 574 Hilgard Avenue in LA near the UCLA campus. Rabbi Toba Schaller will be our speaker. She is the Director of Student Life at Hillel at UCLA.

  • Rotary Means Business Happy Hour is back and scheduled for February 23rd from 6-8pm at the Beverly Bar on 434 N. Camden Drive in Beverly Hills. This is an opportunity to network and, socialize with the District Governor. Cost is $25 and you can register at

Volunteer Opportunity

  • The VA Heroes Golf Course is having a "Heroes" jam session on March 1st, 2023 from 12-1:30pm for all veteran musicians. This is sponsored by Music Mends Minds and, Westwood Village Rotary. WVRC will be sponsoring the lunch following the jam session and needs volunteers to help set up the instruments pre-jam session and then serve the food afterwards! Please contact PP Diane Good if interested in helping out.

  • Pageant of the Arts is back in person and WVRC judges are needed. Judging will be at University High School on March 9th immediately after school at approximately 4pm. Please contact PP Diane Good if interested in being a judge!!

WVRC 2022/2023 Leadership Team

President: Chris Gaynor

President Elect: PP Steve Day

Vice President: Benjamin Fisher

Treasurer: Terry M. White

Youth/Vocational Service: Diane Good

Director/Peace: PP Marsha Hunt

Foundation: PP Steve Day

Global Scholarships: PP Chris Bradford

Webmaster: PP Ron Lyster

District Governor: Olivia Patterson Ryans

Immediate Past President: Nancy McCready

Secretary: PP Nancy McCready

Community Service: Aaron Donahue

International Service: Nevin Senkan

Director: PP Tom Barron

Membership: PP Mark Rogo

Director/Social Media: PP Aly Shoji

Windmill Editor: Teya McCockran