District No. 6920 | Club No. 4189

March 11, 2024

Meeting Minutes

President Bill Keogh rang the bell and welcomed all to the meeting. 

Erick Mongomery gave the pledge and invocation. 

Matt Barrett introduced the guests and visiting Rotarians.

Richard Rogers gave the Sunshine Report.


  • District Conference Jekyll Island, April 26-28.
  • Rotary Golf Tournament, May 7
  • Sock Drive!

Jeannine Stienkuhl introduced Jen Tinsley with Downtown Soul City. Jen informed the club of their upcoming Downtown Get Down, March 21st, 2024. It will be held at the Savannah River Brewing Company. There will be live music and dancing as well as a best dressed competition.

CART: President Bill asked everyone to please continue to contribute to the blue buckets on the table or online at mycartfund.org using the same login credentials you use with DACDB.  Also, please complete our club’s Google form to sign up to be a Cart Challenger. 

Upcoming Meeting Schedule
* March 18 -- Stephanie Stuckey will present a program about her family's iconic business -- Stuckey's.
* March 25 -- Tonia Gibbons from Channeled Paths, Inc. will present a program on mental health counseling services to at-risk, indigent, and underserved youth and their families in the CSRA.
* April 1 -- Dr. Jackson Drumgoole will present on the Bridge Builder Community.
* April 8, 15 -- Masters Tournament and Recovery Monday -- No meetings.
* April 21 -- Vahid Majidl from the Savannah River National Laboratory will finish our trilogy of speakers from the major contractors at SRS.
* April 28 -- Justice Carla Wong McMillan of the Supreme Court of Georgia will address the club.

Upcoming Events

* March 16 -- Rotary Leadership Institute (RLI) in Thomson -- open to all Rotarians who wish to learn more about Rotary.
* March 22 -- Early registration and hotel discount closes for District Conference
* April 20 -- Club Service Project with Turn Back the Block (information to follow in upcoming weeks)
* April 26-28 -- 2024 District Conference, Jekyll Island. Registration is now open. Click here for Registration: https://www.rotarydistrict6920.org/
* May 7 -- Annual Golf Tournament (River Club, North Augusta; information to follow in upcoming weeks)
* May 25-29 -- Rotary International Convention (Singapore) 
* June 24 -- Passing of the Gavel (the end is near!)


Finally, a big thank you and congratulations to our Interact Clubs who attended and ran the meeting last week. Also, thanks and congratulations to the students who participated in the Speech Contest. The speeches of the first and second place winners were fantastic! A huge thanks as well to Chairwoman Mickey Williford and the entire committee for their fantastic work. The first and second place winners will be going on to compete at the next level of the contest; we wish them both great success!
Finally, one more shout-out to the members who participated in the Read Across America Day. It is always worth it just to see a photo of Leland Malchow dressed as the Cat in the Hat! Big thanks to Candice Hillman and Anna Reeves for chairing the committee, and a great job by all the committee members who helped pull this off! Y'all make us proud to be Rotarians.

Guest Speaker/Program

Paul Dainer introduced our guest speaker Dr. Vamsi Kota, Director, Bone Marrow and Stem Cell Transplantation Program.

Dr. Kota gave a presentation on CAR-T cell therapy, a cancer immunotherapy treatment that uses genetically engineered T cells to trigger a patient’s immune system to identify and destroy certain cancer cells in addition to clinical programs for Sickle cell Disease.

The effects of sickle cell disease can be devastating with symptoms consisting of severe pain, anemia, infection and stroke. Sickle cell disease affects approximately 100,000 people in the United States.

While it affects mainly African Americans and people of Hispanic heritage, it is also prevalent in persons of South or Central American, Caribbean, Mediterranean (countries such as Turkey, Greece, and Italy), Indian, and Saudi Arabian descent. Sickle cell disease or trait also affects people of Caucasian descent.

Dr Kota mentioned Sickle Cell patients’ life expectancy is much shorter than the average person.

He is encouraged the FDA recently approved LYFGENIA and CASGEVY, the first two gene therapies for the treatment of sickle cell disease in patients 12 years and older with recurrent vaso-occlusive crisis (VOCs).    

Dr Kota and his team are continuing to make milestones working with Sickle Cell patients.

President Bill led us in reciting the Four-Way Test and adjourned the meeting.

Easy links to pages on our website
Rotary schedule of meeting dates and speakers  
Member Proposal Form 
Online directory - Find a member or update your information
Bulletins - Weekly bulletins from 2014-current