THE SENIOR MEN'S CLUB OF NEW CANAAN
Minutes of Regular Meeting of June 1, 2012
President Joel Pelzner opened the meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance. He thanked former president, Paul Stein, and vice presidents, Ray Davis and Nick Yanicelli, for help in the transition to new leadership and also emphasized the importance of membership feedback, especially on ideas for Club growth and recruiting new members. Finally, he noted the Advertiser article honoring Dave Hunt's election as Distinguished Senior New Canaan Man (with thanks to Paul Strassmann for handling the process). Harry Hitch read the minutes. Gerry Transue reported membership at 437 (140 present at the meeting) and the addition of Bob Goldblatt to the Membership Committee. He also cited many sources available to brief and recruit new members (i.e., the SMC web site, the new "tri-fold" handout, etc.). Five guests were introduced, including several prospective new members.
ANNOUNCEMENTS: George Perkins reported Bill Kirby and Frank Bondor are home, David Brown will be going to Waveny following his recent surgery, Don Douglass is at The Nathaniel Witherell, the Stan Resor memorial service will be in Washington, D.C. on June 4, and Mike Allocca is at home resting for June surgery,
COUTH: 6/13 (8:15AM departure) to 9/11 memorial (1 hour visit), lunch at Marco Polo restaurant in Brooklyn and tour of New York City emergency operations center ($89/pp).
ACTIVITIES: Bridge as usual. Tennis at Mead Park 8:00AM Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. Golf 6/4 at Whitney Farms, 6/20 Silvermine Challenge ($60/pp includes cart and buffet lunch), and 7/10 at Sterling Farms. Cycling 6/6 trip in Tarrytown. On 6/6 walking tour of Woodlawn Cemetary with Pete Stair (meet at New Canaan station for 8:49AM train). Mystery Books discussing Murder at the Racetrack at next meeting, date TBA. 6/18 10:00AM Investments Group at Waveny (discussion on ETF's). Amateur Chefs 6/21 Italian lunch, 7/19 Annual Lobsterfest, and 8/17 Annual SMC BBQ (looking for volunteers to help). 6/25 8:30AM Trailblazers to take walk at Huntington State Park.
SPECIAL: Joel's tried out his new SMC Learning Center, sharing today in history and for birthdays of the famous and infamous, an intellectual uplift for SMC membership.
HUMORIST: Bob Smith offered a trilogy of witticisms: a priest's ill-advised airport security move to hide a hair dryer in his midsection, an 8 year old's ill-fated venture in salesmanship on tampons and lawnmowers, and a listing of suggestive names for Viagra.
SPEAKER: Vice president Zuhair Suidan introduced Mike Baker, a former CIA agent (15 years) and now president and co-founder (in 2000) of Diligence LLC. Mike listed the top three crises facing U.S. as cyber security (private and government), Iran (short and medium term threat), and North Korea (a variety of issues). The common thread is China, especially in cyber security. "We" do not understand China's mindset (i.e. China collects "everything", involved in 2 dozen recent system attacks, has 50 academic institutions broadly at work on intelligence missions, etc.). Mike's key point was the U.S's need for more of a bond between the government and the private sector on cyber security. In the Q/A, Mike covered "Hit List" issues (capture vs. kill and guarding long term assets), cyber attacking the Iranian program (not complete without China), a recent attack on the Iranian program (nice job!), press coverage on Obama administration's attacks on Iran's program (potentially a tactical downside), rating of U.S. intelligence capabilities ("the best", human element is key, recruiting/training strong), China's telcom operations (now tied into Canada), and "disinformation" as a covert action (a useful tool).
Don Hudson, Assistant Secretary