The meeting of 12/13/2023 was focused on being a “Showcase of Members.”
Mike Ladwig started the meeting in that the current President, Claude Kendrick was stuck in traffic. However, he showed up shortly with a big smile and wearing a Santa hat. Reverend David Stechholz gave an invocation.
Victoria Holton, a concert violinist played a beautiful piece on her violin and then played Happy Birthday and we all sang to Sharon Pommerville.
Susan Paluchniak, the first speaker stated that she was born in Detroit. Her father was the pilot for the President of General Motors but joined the military. He was in charge of a base in Germany and eventually became a colonel working on the missile project introduced in the late 1950s. As a result of her father being in the military Susan lived in Germany, South Carolina, her mother’s parents' farm in Ohio, and then Florida. She met her husband who was from Dearborn Michigan and settled here teaching Junior High School. They have a son, Jason, who lives in the Redford area.
Stephen (Steve) Alexander, our next presenter, also served in the military traveling to 15 countries. He used Taiwan as his home base. A graduate of John Glenn High School, his mother wanted him to become a teacher like herself, but he had interest in science spurred on by his discovery of a science magazine. He worked for Ford Motor. He has a daughter, Audrey, 15 in Franklin High School and a son, Trevor, at Michigan State University studying physical therapy.
Victoria Haltom was the last speaker and she jokingly pointed out that she was not named after the queen, but a Ford car known as Victoria. She chose to become a professional musician, a career she dedicated her life to. She was inspired to learn the violin when she was 8 years old after hearing the Detroit Symphony play at her school. Since Livonia did not have a string instrument program at the time her parents sent her to a special program but she came back to Franklin High School for her senior year before enrolling into the University of Michigan. She played for the New Orleans Symphony, spent time as a backup musician in Nashville, taught in the Bloomfield School district for 10 years, and the Metro Youth Program for 17 years. She went back to college in her 60s to be a social worker and now councils’ people. She is very active in several coral groups. In response to Rev. David's question about why she is so active in several groups, she pointed out that as you age your circle of relatives and friends shrink and you need to make an effort to expand your network of friends and enrich your life.
Sponsoring a Family for the holidays, an annual tradition with the Livonia AM Rotary was approved to spend up to $500. Reverend David contacted the Livonia Cares Program. They work with the Salvation Army to screen families.
He was made aware of a family from Livonia whose house had a major fire. He
will see if we can adopt this family.