Club News

Fred Edelman Sworn in as the Club’s 13th President

This morning, the Club’s leadership torch and gavel were passed form from outgoing president Bob Morris to 2021-22 president Fred Edelman.

This will not be unfamiliar territory for Fred who held the position as the Club’s 3rd president in 2009-10 and was one of the Rotary Club of Shady Brook’s founding members.

Fred holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Management and Accounting and until his retirement was Chief executive Officer of National Performance Packaging Holding LLC after holding various position with a number of other companies.

His commitment to service and helping others has been a hallmark of Fred’s life and one reason he has been a driving force and consistent voice and advocate for Rotary.

Fred has also served on the Boards of the Jewish federation, Congregation Brothers of Israel, Trent Center East and West (a nonprofit senior apartment buildings in Trenton), the Association of Independent Corrugated Converters.

After having lost his first wife, Linda, to cancer, Fred was fortunate to have found a second love and describes himself as the proud husband of Frances Zeitler Edelman and both honored and delighted to have four great grandchildren.

In his first remarks as its 13th president, his goals are to further strengthen the Club continue its work in support of Philadelphia’s William Dick School, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, needy veterans and other causes which have characterized the Rotary Club of Shady Brook since its incorporation fifteen years ago.

Also sworn in this morning were its 2021-22 officers.

(l to r)  Alan Agree, Bruce Klugman, Bob Morris, Fred Edelman, Jim Gay and Irv Perlstein)

Unexpectedly, Fred … who never fails to publicly recognize the efforts of others … showed his appreciation for his predecessor, Bob Morris, and two members who have been major contributors to the Club’s programs and activities, Lou Hatfield and Dick Newbert, by present each with a beautiful bouquet of Roses.

Raising Monies for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Disabled Veterans at teh Golden Nugget Flea Market

Led by Alan Agree and Irv Perlstein, club members Fred Edelman, Fran Zeitler and Dick Newbert spent this Sunday morning at the Golden Nugget’s weekly Flea Market in Lambertville to raise monies for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

Alan Agree

and to provide help for disabled veterans.

Irv Perlstein

All of the hundreds of items being sold were donated, some from family members other from friends … with 100% of every dollar raised going to one of the two deserving and needy causes.

Today’s efforts raised $192.00 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and $135.00 to help disabled veterans.

Stephen Corr, Republican Candidate for Judge of the Court of Common Pleas

We were pleased to host Stephen Corr, Republican candidate for a judgeship on the Bucks County Court of Common Pleas.  As a judge he would serve a ten-year term before coming up for a retention vote.

In Pennsylvania, The Courts of Common Pleas have original jurisdiction in all criminal felony cases and original jurisdiction in all civil cases in which the amount in controversy is generally more than $15,000. Courts of common pleas have appellate jurisdiction over the decisions of some state administrative agencies. Judges of the Common Pleas Courts are elected to ten-year terms. A president judge and a court administrator serve in each judicial district. In districts with seven or fewer judges, the president judge with the longest continuous service holds this position.

Steve Coor is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame (1989) and Villanova Law School (1992).  He has practiced in Bucks County for more than 25 years.  He describes himself as a “compassionate and fair litigator and has represented individuals, small businesses, and large corporations in a variety of individual and class action civil litigation matters.

Steve has been lead trial counsel in approximately 70 jury trials.  Since 2001 Steve has represented the families of the victims of the 9/11 attacks in the first lawsuit filed against Bin Laden and Iran for the logistical and financial support Iran provided to the terrorists.

In addition to his professional work Steve has been an active member of the community having served on several township boards in Warrington and 12 years on the Central Bucks School Board is a former member of the Bucks County Bar Association Board of Directors and is an active member of the St. Robert Bellarmine Parish in Warrington.

While Steve is openly running as a “conservative Republican”, he vigorously maintains that his political and religious beliefs can play no role in his hoped for on the Court of Common Pleas … as in his role as a Judge he is bound to “follow the law” irrespective or any personal views.

In response to some questioning, Steve stated:

  • The judge on the Supreme Court he most admires is Clarence Thomas.
  • He was impressed with Amy Comey Barret’s confirmation hearing as she went through it without any notes.
  • He positions himself as an originalist where the Constitution is concerned and seemed to indicate he did not subscribe to the view it is a living document.
  • He is a pro-life Catholic and supporter of the death penalty.
  • When asked about recent Supreme Court decisions placing objections to otherwise secular regulations, he supports a more literal interpretation of the First Amendment’s freedom of religion right.
  • Steve appears also support a literal interpretation of the Second Amendments right to bear arms and as set forth in Section 21 of the Pennsylvania Constitution which provides even more rights for gun owners.

While he has a secure job as a partner with the law firm of Begley, Carlin and Mandio, he is passionate about “giving back” … something he believes he can do as a Judge.

In summation, he stressed his has broad experience in civil, criminal, family and orphan law.  IF elected he has been assured, he would be assigned to the civil courts to help relieve a significant backlog which resulted from the COVID pandemic restrictions.

The Club thanked Steve Corr for his time and wished him well in the upcoming November election.

Mark Lomax, Democratic Candidate for Bucks County Sheriff Joined us Remotely this Morning

Mark Lomax, the Democratic candidate for Bucks County Sheriff became our first remote guest speaker during our renewed Wednesday morning in-person  meetings.

Mark grew up in Philadelphia and has been a resident of Bucks County for over 37 years.  At the age of just 21 joined the State Police force with his first tour in Upper Bucks County.  He retired as the Director of Training and Education in 2008 after 27 years of dedicated service.

He has also spent time as a member of the United Nation’s Peace Keeping organization in Africa, served in a number of other international police-related positions or responsibility Executive Director and CEO of the National Tactical officer Association headquartered in Doylestown.

More recently, Mark was elected to the Warrington Township Board of Supervisors in 2019.

As Sheriff”, Mark says, ‘I’ll bring my personal experiences of growing up in Philadelphia in the 1960s and 1970s during some very tumultuous times of bad relations between the police and communities of color. I bring a unifying voice.  As a law enforcement consultant, I have been hired as a subject matter expert on the use of force, racial profiling, civil unrest, and police management.”

He would also wok to get the Bucks Sheriff’s department accredited (likely a two year or longer process) at both the Commonwealth and federal levels.  Ensuring that the department is properly equipped for today’s challenges and that updated policies are developed and implemented would also be central to his tenure.

Mark is a believer that by working with local associations and service clubs, such as Rotary, Lions and others can go a long way toward building better bridges between law enforcement and local community residents.

He was instrumental in developing the Law Enforcement Mentor Program (LEMP), designed to work with “at risk” youth in the County.

To combat the often encountered “code of silence” among witnesses to crime, building strong and trusted bridges to young an old within communities is paramount.

While he supports the Second Amendment, he believes strongly in licensing and training and sees on need for assault weapons such as AR-15s.

It was interesting to hear him clarify that the Sheriff’s Department is not tasked with criminal investigations of traffic enforcement.

Refreshingly in this day of such partisan political divisiveness, he referred to his opponent in this November’s election as a ”good guy”, similar to a comment his opponent made when referring to Mark.

Ultimately, he believes that his career in law enforcement, training from the local Bucks County level to his international experiences, community relations efforts, youth outreach and Board of Supervisors tenure provide him with the skills and visions to be Bucks best choice for Sheriff.

Mark was given a “remote” round of applause and thanked for his extended time with us.


Fred Harran, Bensalem Township Police Department Director and Republican Candidate for Bucks County Sheriff

Despite a heavy schedule, Bensalem resident and candidate for Sheriff of Bucks County took time to speak to the Club this morning.

Director Harran, originally from New York, moved to Pennsylvania in 1982, where he received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Political Science.  He earned his Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice Administration from St. Joseph’s University. He is also a graduate of the Northwestern University School of Police Staff and Command.

Director Harran has served in law enforcement with the Bensalem Township Police Department in Bucks County, Pennsylvania for 34 years. Currently he serves as the Director of Public Safety for Bensalem Township.  As Director, he is responsible for the management and operation of the police department and for the coordination of the township’s Fire and Rescue departments.

He currently serves on many boards and organizations, including; a member of the Board of Directors for the Bucks County Drug and Alcohol Commission and the FBI’s Rapid DNA Task Group. He represents Pennsylvania at the State Associations of Chiefs of Police and serves as Chairman of the North Atlantic Region of the United States. He serves as a Vice President of the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police and is on the Board for the Bucks County Police Chiefs.

He enthusiastically explained that one reason he loves police work is that “no two days are the same” and even if he “makes plans” they must invariably be changed due to unforeseen circumstances.

He gave a plug for not only his candidacy but those of incumbent Matt Weibtraaub (who as addressed our club in the past) and four other row office candidates.

He talked briefly about the department’s “Copsicle” program of providing free popsicles to township youth as a way of building bridges to the community and especially its youth.  Further, through his fundraising efforts, the program has had a zero impact on the Township’s budget.

One of his, and the department’s main concerns is drugs and the Opioids epidemic, in which the five county region leads the country.

He talked about BPAIR, Bensalem’s police’s addiction intervention and help program.  Fred is a staunch believer in providing help for the mentally ill and helping those addicted to substances medical intervention and treatment rather than criminalizing their behaviors.  In another staggering statistic, he mentioned that one in two people will, at sometime, experience legal and/or illegal drug problems.

There was a great deal of discussion around the proliferation of guns, stalled gun control legislation at the state and national levels and the Second Amendment.  Surprising to some, Harran does not believe that the Second Amendment is a license to permit everyone to own any type of gun. Rather, while is supportive of private ownership of guns for responsible people who are not a threat to themselves or others, he sees no reason for assault weapons, ghost guns and bump stocks to be freely available.

Moreover, he support closing the gun show and private sale loopholes where it comes to the registration of firearms.

At the same time, in his official capacity as a police officer, he is obligated to uphold federal and state laws which are on the books even if they run counter to his personal beliefs.

He takes pride in the recent agreement among the County’s 39 police departments when it comes to the “use of force”.

Not surprisingly, he does not think “defunding the police” makes sense, while the use of funds within police departments may need to be reallocated to meet the challenges facing today’s police departments, including placing more emphasis on mental health issues.

Fred spoke about the fears some people have of the police.  He also mentioned that in Bucks County “no knock warrants” are extremely rare and only permitted by a judge under the most dangerous an dire circumstances.  When asked about police stops, based on both his years in law enforcement and having been confronted by a policeman holding a gun to his head in New York when he was a youth, the best situation is to comply with the requests of an officer and calmly explain why the stop or confrontation might have been unnecessary as it was in his case. He commented than “the streets are not the place to argue with the police”.

Where the question of “bad” police personnel are concerned, he believes that there may be 1%-2% of police who should not be on the job and in his career, he has ersonally fired 26 police officers.

He believes that the two most important areas of concern to most Bucks residents are quality educational systems and safety.

When the Parx Casino was mentioned, he felt they were very good for the community of Bensalem and Bucks County.  Some $11.8 million is paid by Parx annually in lieu of taxes.  The casino also makes major contributions to the Bensalem MES.

When asked about his race for sheriff, candidate Harran would not attack his opponent whom he has met and characterizes as “a nice guy”.  That said, he believes his past and current uninterrupted experience in police work, relationships with all 39 of the county’s police departments, fundraising capabilities, and commitment to community relations with law enforcement and safety eminently qualify him and hopes it will convince voters to support him in November’s election.

The Club gave Fred Harran a round of applause, thanked him for his generous time and candidness and wished him well in November.

Yardley-Langhorne Road Clean-up

Club members, all but one of whom is in their 80s, were joined by our assistant district governor for its semi-annual trash collection along Yardley-Langhorne Road this morning … its commitment to the Commonwealth’s Adopt-A-Highway program.

While far removed from the 1981 LA heavy metal rock band, they did take on something of an aura of a Motley Crew!

(l to r)  Club President Bob Morris, Dick Newbert, Alan Agree, Irv Perlstein, Chris Potter, Road Clean-up Chair Jerry Redington and Fred Edelman

Collecting everything from discarded cans and bottles to candy wrappers and cigarettes, their goal is to keep their community safe, clean and green.

And to prove that even “presidents” are not immune from work, here’s evidence that ours continues to give his all!


May 12, 2021 – In-Person Meetings At Last – Presidential Citations – Governor’s Awards – New Honorary Member Recognition

After fourteen long months of virtual ZOOM meetings, we were able to get together in-person once again

aand confrim that each of us can "attend" a Rotary meeting in other than out pajamas bottoms!

And, the happiest person to be back with live humans …

Club President Bob Morris recognized two Club stalwarts with Presidential Awards.

Lou Hatfield

For her years of unselfish dedication to the Rotary Club or Shady Brook, the many causes it has and continues to support and as a Board Member and Club’s Secretary for the past six years.  Lou has continued to provide detailed and timely Minutes for all Club meetings, oversee many other administrative Club functions and stepped in to chair the Club’s Student-of-the-Month program this year.     

Arthur Finkle

For his years of unselfish dedication to the Rotary Club or Shady Brook, the many causes it has and continues to support, as a Board Member and Club’s Treasurer since 2008. Arthur has ensured the Club’s finances are always in order, tax reports are filed in a timely manner, attained and maintains its 501(c)(3) status and continues to provide accurate monthly financial reports for two separate accounts

Bob next recognized Alan Agree, Bruce Klugman, Irv Perlstein and Dick Newbert for their 2020-2021 District Governor's Awards

(l to r)  Alan, Bruce, Irv, Dick and Bob

For his generous donations of shoes and clothing and other contributions assisting the Club in its ongoing programs to support the William Dick School, Gary Smelcer was recognized and presented with an Honorary Membership in the Club.

Gary did come prepared with a few, short thoughts to share with the membership

"When Irv and Alan first told me that I was going to be maade an Honorary Rotarian I was excieted.  Everyone knows there no such thing as a free linch, so I had to settle for a free breakfast.  Let me assure you that is the highlight of my day … so far.  I wanted to be reaady for this day and so I went ahead an had a new "rotary" t-shirt he has made for the occasion."

"But, then I went ahead and dod some research aabout Rotary and an truly honrooed to join the ranks of King Gustaf of Sweeded, King George VI of ENglnad, Sir Winston Churchill and Walt Disney.  So, I want to thank the members of the Roatary Club, Irv and Alan, aas well as my mom, my dad, my brother, my uncle, my wife and 4 kids, my dog and most importantly I want to thakn Bube Yum!"

Without exception, Gary's was the most "unique" and "humorous" expression ot thanks our Club has ever received.  We're even more pleased to ahve him joining us!

Alan wound up the morning with some Trivia questions.

For each of us, until this morning, we never apprecaited how special it was to physically gather together each week.



Our Club’s 12-Year Support of the William Dick School Presentation Made at the Rotary’s District 7450’s Annual Convention

The Club was honored to have been asked to present an overview of its 12-year commitment ot and support of Philadelphia's inner-city William Dick Elementary School at this year's annual District 7450 Convention … this year in combination with two other regional districts … which was held virtually over Zoom due social gathering precautions caused by the COVID-19 pnademic.

In a recent survey of both curreent and past members, this program has and continues to be deemed the Club's most important as there is no greater gift we can provide than improving the lives of and opportunities for children. 

The following are the 57 slides which were shown over four sessions (Firday evening April 30th, Saturday May 1st both in the morning and evening and again on Sunday morning May 2nd).

Karen Mazzarella – President of District 7450’s Gundaker Foundation

Karen Mazzarella, president of Rotary District 7450' Gundaker Foundationjoined our vitrual meeting this morning. 

While many of our members had heaard about the Foundation, few had any substantive knowledge about its misison and how relatively easy grants which fall withing their guidelines can be obtained in support of certain club programs.



At the conclusion of Karen's presentaiton and soem brief discussion, the members voted to appropraate the eequivalent of $10.00 per member and joing the Gundaker Foundation beginning with their new 2021-22 fiscal year on July 1st