Club History
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The Rotary Club of Torrey Pines (La Jolla) had its charter event on 24 July 1964 and was sponsored by The Rotary Club of La Jolla.  That charter event, held at the Torrey Pines Inn, was attended by the District Governor of Districe 534, Larry Townsend.  The first president was Bob Hafstrom and 26 charter members were listed in the program, along with additional members that had joined after the charter was granted on 30 June 1964.

The first newsletter, called "The Pitch," had been published on 13 July 1964 and a copy remains in the club archives.  In the first issue mention was made that a visitor from England had already been received and our international "flavor" had begun.  The other seven clubs in San Diego were listed as possible make-up locations.  By the 16 September publication of the second Pitch, the club had held its first golf tournament.  The first club banner was unveiled at the Christmas party held on 23 December 1964.  The first demotion dinner was on 16 June 1965 and the second golf tournament was the next week, on 23 June. The programs in the first year included presentations on the San Diego Zoo, Sea World, the real estate market, Vietnam, California wine, the Historical Society, hypnosis, plastic surgery and many other fascinating and informative topics.  Members' wives (known as Rotary-Anns in those days) were invited to several social occasions as well.

In 1967 the club awarded an Achievement Award to a student at UCSD and Torrey Pines hit a peak in membership of 48 that year.  During our almost 50 years we have averaged around 35 members.  Our members have attended make-up meetings of other clubs and have collected banners from over 40 states and over 50 countries.

In 1983 Torrey Pines and the La Jolla club jointly sponsored The Rotary Club of La Jolla Golden Triangle, which has grown to be an active, effective club in our area.

Over the years, Torrey Pines has formed Interact clubs, sponsored Little League and youth soccer teams, sponsored two outbound Rotary Ambassadorial Scholars and hosted five inbound scholars.  Torrey Pines has supported the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) program with participation and scholarships since the late 1980s.  The club has supported the International Cafe for foreign students at UCSD since the early 1990s and proudly continues to do so.

The first female member, Caryl Anne Frost, joined Torrey Pines in 1987, very shortly after Rotary International altered its membership rules.  She was the second woman to be inducted in our district.

In 1991 the club completed a viewing platform on the Guy Fleming Trail at the Torrey Pines State Reserve. The flagpole outside the Torrey Pines visitors' center had been donated by the club in 1967.  The flagpole and a recognition plaque are still there.

A Hole-in-One contest, as well as Birdies-for-Charity and Chip-in-for-Charity programs, were conducted in conjunction with the Buick Invitational Torrey Pines Golf Tournament and raised substantial funds over ten years starting in 1995.  Our club foundation was established with the proceeds of those fund-raisers plus the generous contributions from our members.

In 2000 member Bill Irwin led a Group Study Exchange (GSE) team of five teachers to Belize, Honduras and Guatamala for a meaningful educational, vocational and cultural experience.  More recently, Bill and a friend have ridden their bicycles across the United States twice and from Canada to Mexico once, raising funds for various charitable causes, including Rotary International's "End Polio Now" campaign.

Fourteen Torrey Pines members, along with Rotario Indepentia of Tijuana, built a small house in Tijuana for a destitute family in 2001.  We also built and supplied a medical clinic in one of the colonias de Tijuana and in 2002 we built another house.

In 2002 the club reached a milestone with 100 percent Paul Harris Fellows and were so recognized by the district.  (A person may be  designated as a PHF for each $1,000 contribution to the charitable work of The Rotary Foundation.)  From 2001 through 2005 Torrey Pines provided "Portraits of Hope," professional family photo portraits, as an annual holiday treat for low-income families that reside in Father Joe Carroll's shelter facility in downtown San Diego.

Over the past ten years, Torrey Pines has been instrumental in performing service projects, with matching grant funding from The Rotary Foundation, in India, Africa and South America.  Total costs of these projects was about $250,000.

Torrey Pines started a wine club within the Rotary club in 1997 and it continues today as another of our unique features.   The wine club idea was the result of a trip by several members to Nice, France, for the Rotary International Convention held there in 1995.  That trip became known as "In Vino Veritas" and in 2007 members took part in "In Vino Veritas VII."  As a result of these trips, members of the club have made and maintained friendships with Rotarians in France and Italy.  The trips are planned to continue and, meanwhile, In Vino Veritas has become a regular wine-tasting feature of weekly club meetings.

Our latest exchange banner was designed and produced in 2003 by Gordon Shurtleff who has also inventoried and displayed all the make-up banners the club members have collected.

In 2006-2007 Torrey Pines was proud to have our member Philippe Lamoise serve as District Governor, the first from our club.  Philippe had been our President in 1997-1998.  With a new President each year, the club has been led by many of our members over the years, including three members who have served in this role more than once.  Our first female President was Nancy Russian in 2002-2003.

Approaching a half-century of service and fellowship, The Rotary Club of Torrey Pines (La Jolla) looks forward to many more successful years.