Weekly El Cerrito Rotary Bulletin for Sept 24, 2020

El Cerrito Rotary – The Wheel

September 24, 2020

Editor:  Gary Buffon


President Andy opened the Zoom meeting by greeting us all and provided a thought for today with a quote.  I failed to get the count of all on the participants on the zoom program today. However it was good turnout for an excellent speaker!

Guests & Visiting Rotarians:  Andy had two guests today, his sister Laurie and his Mother Marji Brown both of these family members were able to participate via zoom and enjoy our guest speaker who was speaking to us from Minnesota.  Our guest speaker is a retired Army Lt Colonel Donna Bergstrom and currently works with the Red Lake Tribe Reservation which is home of the Chippewa Tribe.   


  • Our October Board Meeting will be an in person activity and probably be held at Laura’s in Richmond.
  • Marty notified us of Foundation Month and gave us a hint of things to come which include the progress being made on the Camp Tuolumne rebuild and tree planting.  Check in next week for more progress.     

Sgt at Arms:  Steve was on task and reminded us that next Tuesday is National Coffee Day.  No other recognitions were made.

Happy Dollars:  Jack is happy for visiting the Tahoe City Rotary and he gave us some good info about that event.  Jane is happy for the weekend she and her family spent at Twain Hart in Northern Calif.  Steve is happy for his Lake Tahoe visit.  Lots of happy Rotarians.

Today’s Program:   Andy introduced Donna Bergstrom who lives in Minnesota where she is involved in state political activities.  She was on hand today to bring us key information about Indian history especially regarding the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe and the somewhat difficult and involved operation of Indian affairs for the members of the tribe.  She began by sharing a lot of information to give us a baseline for what she delivered later in her presentation.  The history of the tribe and the first written treaty that completed in 1778.  She did provide one key clarification that the proper terminology for and Indian is “American Indian.”  In 1924 citizenship wwas granted to all American Indicans.  Also there are currently 567 federally recogized Tribes.  Donna also explained some of the key things that occurred over almost two centuries of US/Indian relationships.  One of the more interesting aspects that Donna shared is that American Indicans have a great sense of price for our military as this is where the warriors in our culture are recognized and admired.  We also learned about personal property rights and how the conflicts about Indian Historical lands create a lot of interesting situations which take a long time to resolve.  Donna also share the challenge of law enforcement and the number of agencies that get involved in many criminal cases which adds another area of comlication. 

To me this presentation was a wonderful presentation which I rated 9.5 on a 10 point scale.  I love history and did not know much about American Indian history.   Even with watching a lot of old time westerns on TV that doesn’t give us a basis to use for understanding.  Thanks to President Andy for giving us the opportunity to hear such quality presentatations.

Thought for the Day:    

Always consider the overall impact of what we are doing and how it will bring about better outcomes from our actions.