60 Years of Service to the Brea Community
At the 60th Anniversary and Installation dinner on September 29, Dr. Tom Green, Past President and Kiwanian-of-The-Year, spoke about the club's rich history and how we developed over the years.
This is our 60 year anniversary. We were sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of La Habra Club and chartered in 1951 with 25 members. At this time, Kiwanis was membership was restricted to just men.
In the early years the club was more for networking and
social service. In 1951 Brea probably had a 3,000 population. Our
early events included Easter
Egg Hunts and, as one might expect, real eggs were used, dyed by our members. Later in the 60's and early 70's
real eggs were replaced with plastic ones that had business store notes in them
that could be retrieved for store products.
In 1971, the club grew to 35 members in a short time. We chartered Boy Scout Troop 801 and have been associated with the troop to this day.
In 1985, with members that included Dean Hall, Don Hull and Jim Vecchio, we moved to Ruben's Restaurant (on the current site of the Hat) and continued our breakfast meetings.
Still a favorite of ours, and also started back in 1985, is our annual Toys for Tots project, still chaired by Dean Hall.
New projects were started in 1987 like the Spelling Bee and Essay Contest under the literary skills of Joe DuPuy.
In the same year, we chartered the Brea-Olinda High School Key Club, a group of community minded kids who we have worked closely with for the past 25 years.
Coming to their senses in 1987, Kiwanis International allowed woman to become club members and Kathy Roney, manager of Rubens, becoming a member in 1989.
Our first woman president was Anita Galins in 1993, presiding over 23 members. When we lost our meeting place at Ruben's, we moved to Bruno's Deli on Central Avenue which was embarrassing to bring speakers and visitors.
We relocated to Embassy Suites in 1994 and went from 23 to 34 members under the leadership of Dr. Tom Green.
As membership increased in 1994, the club changed from only service to a fund raising club. In 1991 our charitable budget was less than $2,000 but in 1995 we had the One Million Dollar Hole In One Contest that netted over $20,000
In the 90's, we had two Hole In One Contests, five golf tournaments, three western dinner dances and three Oktoberfests. We made a lot of money!
By 1999 the club hit it's peak membership, 56 members. During that time we donated a lot of money, including $30,000 to the Boys and Girls Club to help build their club.
We became involved with the Mayor's Prayer Breakfast, Duffy Boat rides, baseball games and theater nights as well as wine tasting events in Temecula and Solvang.
Our passion is to help kids in need and inspire those in our community to perform acts of compassion for other people. We inspire individuals to join other service groups in their communities to do good for kids and seniors. We touch people in ways we don't realize. Our spirit has grown in the last five years to a good feeling for our success in the next few years. We are inspired to help those less fortunate, to put others before self.
In 1920, Kiwanis International adopted our motto as "We Build" but was later changed in 2005 to
'Serving the Children of the World'