Thursday, September 18, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Volunteers give boost to Academic Decathlon

bates column sig

By
From page A2 | February 06, 2014 |

Our big North Bay Region Academic Decathlon has come and gone yet another year.

It takes a host of volunteers to make this big event for high school students from four North Bay counties happen. These dedicated volunteers from all walks of life get up bright and early to volunteer on two consecutive Saturdays and they always come through for us. Some will go on to work at the state competition in Sacramento in March.

“Without our Academic Decathlon volunteer team, we would truly not have a program,” said Ken Scarberry, Solano County Office of Education director of youth development and executive director of the California Academic Decathlon.

I loved speaking to several enthusiastic Fairfield residents about their first-time experience as decathlon volunteers.

I asked Ray Johnson, a retired 37-year Air Force officer and corporate administrator in the business world for many years, how his day went. “It was a distinct honor to judge the prepared and impromptu speeches of such well-prepared, bright and inspirational students. They shared their views on many topics such as potential cancer cures, stimulating global economic growth, and the impact of climate change. Other topics included a number of civil rights issues such as equal work for equal pay, repressive voting and other substantive issues that we adults should be seriously discussing,” he said.

“The event was well-organized and supported by volunteers throughout our community and elsewhere. I was highly impressed and will participate again if requested,” Johnson said.

Stuart ‘Stu” Travis, a former officer in several top companies and the founder (now retired) of his own dot-com company, along with his wife Stephanie, jokingly (I think) asked, “What is the pay”? He added that he was not known as the volunteering type. But without too much begging on my part, he agreed to be an interview judge. He was a great asset to my team and plans to go to Sacramento in March.

“The pay remains nonexistent, but I have learned that there is an excellent return on the invested time with a feeling of having made a contribution and enjoying the process,” Travis said.

Betty Silva retired as a Fairfield-Suisun School District media teacher after 31 years. She served as president of the California Library Association, and is currently involved with the California Association of Retired Teachers as well as a number of other organizations. She still works some as an independent contractor for a library software company.

Silva didn’t work directly with students but loved working in the test center and had high praise for the command center staff. She plans to go to the state competition to again work in the test center and has the 2015 regional competition on her calendar.

I recently talked to Jeff Baggett, immediate past president of the Fairfield-Suisun noontime Rotary Club, and he shared that his club has been involved with the Solano Academic Decathlon for a dozen-plus years.

“As a service organization that gives back to the community, this was a hands-on project that directly benefited the local high school kids and gave our members that feeling of contributing to our community,” he said. On one of the Saturdays, his club serves a noontime meal of hamburgers, hot dogs, veggie burgers along with chips, cookies and drinks for students, staff and all the volunteers.

“The Academic Decathlon is an event that brings together 20 to 30 Rotary members as volunteers”, Suzanne Bragdon, current president of the noontime club and city manager in Suisun City, said in an email. “This was the first hands-on event I participated in eight years ago and what a wonderful way to get to know our fellow club members outside the regular meeting.”

Rotarian John Unger, from the same club and a local family law attorney, has volunteered for many years as our decathlon Super Quiz master and our countywide Spelling Bee pronouncer. He has done an excellent job for many years and we couldn’t do it without him.

A special thanks goes out to all of our volunteers. We couldn’t do it without them, either. I look forward to seeing them in Sacramento in March. For more information about volunteering, please call Scarberry at 707-646-7603.

Mayrene Bates is a trustee on the Solano County Board of Education.

Mayrene Bates

Mayrene Bates is a trustee with the Solano County Board of Education.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

 
Theatre DeVille in Vacaville closes

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1, 15 Comments | Gallery

 
Focus on school attendance now, always

By Mayrene Bates | From Page: A2, 1 Comment

 
Suisun City Senior Center seeks holiday donations

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

Lunafest returns to Fairfield in November

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Pepperbelly’s for sale

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3, 4 Comments

Jury selection begins in 2011 Fairfield murder trial

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A3

 
Seniors get help at Kroc Center health fair

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Drug court success stories tell their tales

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Fairfield police log: Sept. 16, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

 
Suisun City police log: Sept. 16, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

Weather for Sept. 18, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: B10

 
.

US / World

Emotions mount on final day of Scottish campaign

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
More than 2,000 homes threatened in California fire

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

Maps provide early warning of California fire risk

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
NASA’s Maven spacecraft reaches Mars this weekend

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

US military role in Iraq raises combat questions

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Police: Ambush suspect was military re-enactor

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment | Gallery

House grudgingly approves arms for Syrian rebels

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 2 Comments

 
Ex-VA doctor: Phoenix report a ‘whitewash’

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

School district police stock up free military gear

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 4 Comments | Gallery

 
Doctor says Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has cancer

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

US scientist: Ebola unlikely to become airborne

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Liberia president praises US for Ebola help pledge

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Obama reaffirms opposition to US combat in Iraq

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 1 Comment

 
AP Interview: Iraq premier says no foreign troops

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 1 Comment

.

Opinion

 
Homeless find welcome in Vallejo

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A7, 7 Comments

 
Give new crime report a chance

By Kelvin Wade | From Page: A7, 19 Comments

 
.

Living

Today in History: Sept. 18, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Sept. 18, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: Sept. 18, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A9

 
My brother fails to make an effort to when it comes to my kids

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A9

.

Entertainment

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
U2 returns to iTunes Top 100 — 26 times

By Los Angeles Times | From Page: B4, 1 Comment

Directors Guild finds TV diversity hiring stalled

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Sports

Rodriguez gets 1st MEL soccer win since return to league

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B1

 
Giants snap tie in 9th, beat Arizona to narrow gap in West to 2

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
49ers’ Kaepernick fined for inappropriate language

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1, 4 Comments | Gallery

Panthers remove DE Greg Hardy from active roster

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Barry Bonds appeal heads back to court

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

NFL, union agree to new drug policy, HGH testing

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Raiders rookie Derek Carr focuses on job at hand

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Pegulas’ bid to buy Bills OK’d by NFL committee

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
FSU benches Winston for 1st half of Clemson game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Umpire West suspended 1 game for grabbing jersey

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
After making ‘mistake,’ Vikings bench RB Peterson

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Sharks sign D Braun to 5-year, $19 M extension

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Rockets acquire Jason Terry, picks from Kings

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

.

Business

Wells Fargo pays $290,000 in sex harassment case

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
Fed signals plan to keep key rate at record low

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

Brown signs ride-sharing insurance legislation

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
US homebuilder confidence soars in September

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

Anthem, hospitals join to offer new insurance plan

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
Drag queens dress down Facebook over names

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5, 1 Comment

.

Obituaries

Margaret King

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9