Upcoming Programs

Upcoming 2019 Programs — Save the Date

Cataract Blindness: Worldwide Strategies

Thursday, March 21, 2019

7:30 p.m. Spring Lake Village Auditorium
5555 Montgomery Drive, Santa Rosa

Members & SLV residents: No Charge
Non-Members: $5
No reservation required.

Gary Barth, MD, Eye Care Institute, Santa Rosa; Trustee Seva Foundation.

In 2017, Britain’s The Lancet published in their sister journal that cataract blindness projections will increase from the current 35 million to 70 million worldwide by 2050. Dr. Barth will discuss the implications of this demographic tidal wave as the population of the aged increases.

Drawing on experiences from his 15 surgical experiences in Nepal, India, Cambodia, and Nepal, Dr. Barth will describe the Seva Foundation’s (seva.org) 40 years of working with over 100 international eye hospitals to increase their efficiency. Through the Global Sight Initiative (http://globalsightinitiative.org), the best of these eye hospitals are serving as mentor institutions.

Dr. Barth will also discuss the most innovative eye care facility in the western hemisphere: Visualiza in Guatemala. This amazing center does 37% of the country’s cataract surgeries that are made accessible to everyone regardless of means.

Many of our members have had cataract surgery or soon will. This talk will provide a worldwide perspective on the leading edge of innovation.

Linda Lambert, Sponsor

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Defeating Terrorist Ideology – how to stop the recruitment and radicalization of younger people into terrorist groups

Friday, April 5, 2019

Noon, The Legends
Bennett Valley Golf Club
3328 Yulupa Ave, Santa Rosa

Buffet Luncheon:  Members $29; Non-members $39

Reservations close Friday, March 29, (or earlier if capacity is reached)

Farah Pandith, World-leading expert in countering violent extremism

In this presentation, Ms. Pandith will share with us her thoughts on how to defeat terrorism.  Her strategy is to battle it at its source – by taking on the recruiting messages being delivered by terrorists to younger, more impressionable people.  What are those messages?  How do we counter them?  She will explain.  As she sees it we are really in a war of ideas.  The weapons come later.

We are very fortunate to have her talk with us.  Be sure to bring your questions!

Farah Pandith is an author, foreign policy strategist, and former diplomat. She served as a political appointee under Presidents George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama. She was the first-ever Special Representative to Muslim Communities, serving both Secretaries of State Hillary Clinton and John Kerry.  She has served on the National Security Council and on the Department of Homeland Security’s Advisory Council.

Her most recent book is  How We Win: How Cutting-Edge Entrepreneurs, Political Visionaries, Enlightened Business Leaders and Social Media Mavens Can Defeat the Extremist Threat.  The former Supreme Allied Commander of NATO, Admiral James G. Stavridis writes …   “I wish I’d had Farah Pandith’s groundbreaking book when I was on the front lines of the war against violent extremists…”

Bring your personal copy of “How We Win” and Ms. Pandith will sign it for you.

Leslie Treadway, Sponsor

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Patriots for Profit? America’s Experience with Private Military Contractors

Thursday, April 18, 2019

7:30 p.m., Spring Lake Village Auditorium
5555 Montgomery Drive, Santa Rosa

Members & SLV Residents: No Charge
Non-Members: $5
No reservation required.

Thomas Bruneau, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Naval Postgraduate School

For decades now, the centrality of contracting in American warfare–both on the battlefield and in support of the battlefield–has been growing. Today’s private military industry is a multibillion-dollar business. As the U.S. increasingly relies on the private sector to wage war, some see this as a strategic liability. Others consider the trend more efficient and cost-effective.

Dr. Bruneau will discuss the pros and cons of contracting security support. Highlighting the American experience in Iraq and Afghanistan, he will explore the many dimensions of using private contractors, including effectiveness, cost, accountability, and ethics. The impact on regular U.S. troops and relations with host governments will also be issues to be examined.

During his career at the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS), Thomas Bruneau served as Chairman of the Department of National Security Affairs and Director of the Center for Civil-Military Relations. Prior to joining the NPS, Dr. Bruneau taught in the Department of Political Science at McGill University. In addition to his long academic career and ten years of administrative responsibilities at the NPS, Dr. Bruneau is also Vice President of Global Affairs, LLC, a contracting firm.

As Dr. Bruneau was researching and writing Patriots for Profit, he became aware of the tension between democratic civilian control and military effectiveness. Contracting out is supposed to enhance military effectiveness, but holds serious implications for democratic civilian control. In a new publication, with others, titled Civil-Military Relations: Control and Effectiveness Across Regimes, Dr. Bruneau explores the spectrum from democracies to authoritarian regimes in their use of private military contractors.

Mike Morrison, Sponsor

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When we announce a forthcoming WAC luncheon or dinner program, we request that you press the Reserve Now button for your event.  You will be able to choose either (1) to enter a reservation and pay by credit card, or (2) to print a reservation form to fill out and mail to WACSC according to the instructions on the form.  In either case, you must reserve and pay so that we receive your reservation at least one week before the event.

Most venues require this amount of time (one week) in order to be properly staffed and for the chef to order the right quantity of food for our event. Also note that we will take reservations up to a week prior to the luncheon date, or earlier if capacity is reached. It is always a good idea to make your reservation as soon as you can so as not to be disappointed.

If you reserve by mailing a check, if your reservation arrives after the deadline date or if capacity has been reached, you will receive a notification and your check will be returned. You may request to be added to a wait list for reservations by leaving a message at the WACSC phone number: 707-573-6014.

We accept cancellations and provide refunds up to 72 hours before the event. For example, if there is a luncheon on Friday, we can accept your cancellation and send you a refund if you have called the above-mentioned phone number to cancel before noon on the preceding Tuesday. After that time, we cannot provide a refund, since we are obligated to pay the venue for the reservation, even if you do not come.


Many of us just can’t eat all the food that we are often served at our WAC luncheons. Wishing not to waste food, we may have asked for a “doggie bag.” Depending on where you were and whom you asked, you may have been told that the venue does not allow food to be taken away. How can that be? There is enough here for another meal!

A ‘NO DOGGY BAG’ policy applies at some of our luncheon venues. This is the restaurant’s food safety rule, not a WACSC policy. The reason is primarily related to liability that the restaurant would have, should you get sick from the food you take home. Sometimes, food taken home may sit in a car a bit too long and develop bacteria that could make you ill.  Please understand that the venue is not being mean, but, rather, they do not want to take the risk of any adverse health effects.

WACSC is a member of

World Affairs Councils of America

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