• SAS October 2020 Newsletter

October 2020 Newsletter

Please click on the link below to read the October 2020 Newsletter:

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September 2020 Newsletter

Please read the September 2020 newsletter via the link below:

SAS-SF_Sept 2020

  • SAS June 2020 Newsletter

June 2020 Newsletter

Dear Members and Friends of the St. Andrew’s Society,

Please read the June 2020 newsletter via the link below:

SAS June 2020 Newsletter

April 2020 Newsletter

Dear Members and Friends of the St. Andrew’s Society,

Please read the April 2020 newsletter via the link below:

SAS-SF_Apr 2020

  • SAS-February 2020 Newsletter

February 2020 Newsletter

Dear Members and Friends of the St. Andrew’s Society,

Please read the February 2020 newsletter via the link below:

SAS-February 2020 Newsletter

  • January 2020 Newsletter

January 2020 Newsletter

Dear Members of the St. Andrew’s Society,

Please read the January Newsletter via the link below:

SAS-SF_Jan 2020

Happy New Year!

  • SAS December 2019 Newsletter

December 2019 Newsletter

Dear Members of the St. Andrew’s Society,

Please click on the link below to read our December newsletter.

SAS-SF_Dec 2019

Happy New Year!

  • SAS November 2019 Newsletter

November 2019 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society:

Please click on the link below to the November newsletter.

November 2019 Newsletter

  • October 2019 Newsletter

October 2019 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

As you know from my previous writings, I usually concentrate on Scottish and Scottish American culture and the arts. This month, I am focusing on a slightly different aspect of our community and culture; its ability to positively affect our mental well-being. October is Mental Health Awareness Month and October 10 was World Mental Health Day.

Read the October 2019 Newsletter

  • September 2019 Newsletter

September 2019 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

Cultural identity and a full heart

I’m a third generation Californian on my mother’s side. Both sets of her grandparents came from Italy to the Bay Area at the turn of the 19th Century. So, when I was growing up, all our extended family celebrations were with the Italians, and I loved it. Being Italian American is a key part of my cultural identity, and the one I most strongly identified with when I was growing up.

Read the rest of the Newsletter

  • SAS June 2019 Newsletter

June 2019 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

A Society for the 21st Century – not all Shortbread and Bunnets

I’ve been using this phrase quite a lot in the past few months, and even before then as I talked with people about how the Society had changed since I joined 10 years ago. I’d used it so often that it occurred to me that I should explain a bit about what kinds of things can be packed into that phrase.

Read the June Newsletter

  • May Newsletter

May 2019 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

In an earlier message this year, I mentioned that our Board of Trustees and Officers worked together over two weekends in March to reflect on and review how far the Society has come in the past decade, and how we can best continue its Mission, uphold its values and support growth and financial security in the 21st century life of the Society.

Read the Newsletter

  • SAS April Newsletter

April 2019 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

The Week of April 6 is Tartan Week, and there are celebrations and events happening all over the US.  National Tartan Day began in 1998 when the US Senate declared April 6 as National Tartan Day to recognize the contributions made by Scottish Americans to the United States.

Read the Newsletter

  • March 2019 Newsletter

March 2019 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

It’s St. Patrick’s Day as I write this, and I am thinking about change. Early this month, our Trustees and Officers came together for a morning of Professional Development. In the past 10 years, some aspects of the Society have changed tremendously, and as leaders we were keenly aware that the best way to work with change is to actively engage with it, rather than passively let it take hold of us.

Read the March 2019 Newsletter

  • February 2019 Newsletter

February 2019 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

It’s a season of firsts. We have just held our first Burns Supper at the City Club of San Francisco. It was a spectacularly successful evening and I would like to heartily and warmly thank our new 1st VP, Allen Cary. Through his dedicated efforts, 150 people filled the room, and many of our guests were new to the event.

Read the February 2019 Newsletter

  • January 2019 Newsletter

January 2019 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

As an extension of the First Foot tradition which we performed at our Hogmanay celebration – please accept my wish for good tidings in this New Year…lang may yer lum reek!

Read the January 2019 Newsletter

  • Winter 2018 Newsletter

Winter 2018 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

Well, I’m just about on my way out…so, please bear with me for one final newsletter.

Change is in the air – both seasonal and SASSF leadership-wise, but also generational within our guid Society…so, we will now have the opportunity to navigate these changes well together.

Read the Winter 2018 Newsletter

  • Fall 2018 Newsletter

Fall 2018 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

In addition to my update regarding our upcoming SASSF elections for the coming term 2019-20/21, I’ll take a few minutes now to review our activities of late Summer, and will then point the way forward into the Fall season.

Read the Fall 2018 Newsletter

  • Summer 2018 Newsletter

Summer 2018 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

Pausing for a moment to take account of Summer thus far, and also to look forward briefly to the upcoming Pleasanton Highland Games, and the Fall Season beyond. First – kudos and thanks to Irene and Brian for helping get the summer off to a good start by generously hosting this year’s class of Bay Area-based Saltire Foundation interns to a memorable BBQ in early July at their lovely home in San Mateo.

Read the Summer 2018 Newsletter

  • June 2018 Newsletter

June 2018 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

As we approach mid-year, with Summer almost upon us – we can reflect on what has been a good year so far – noting much progress and many accomplishments. At the May 21st member meeting for example – Board of Student Assistance Chair Kitty Lenhart brought the good news that her committee has decided upon the five scholarship candidates whom the board is recommending to receive $20,000 which would be shared equally amongst the five (see accompanying letter for additional details).

Click here to read the June 2018 Newsletter


  • SAS May Newsletter

May 2018 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

Well, the “big month,” the occasion for which we’ve all been patiently waiting – is finally upon us: The Royal Wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Henry of Wales. Interestingly, you may recall that Bard Irene Waldman Costello shared with us last month her research – that Miss Markle might likely also be of Scottish ancestry herself, possibly a descendant of no less than Robert the Bruce! On any occasion – we wish the happy couple well!

Read the rest of the May Newsletter

  • April 2018 Newsletter

April 2018 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

After first acknowledging National Tartan Day (April 6th) – I would like to begin with a big round of thanks to our St. Andrew’s Society for pulling together and doing good work. To Jack Ryder for stepping up last minute last month and putting on a great presentation – which highlighted Scottish San Francisco architect (and St. Andrew’s Society member) T. Paterson Ross.

Read the April 2018 Newsletter

  • March 2018 Newsletter

March 2018 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

I’ll begin by wishing our readership Happy Spring, as the Vernal Equinox approaches (March 20th)! Circling back to where we left off last month in February…As mentioned, we would close out this year’s Burns season by joining sister society – St. Andrew’s Society of Oakland at their annual Burns Supper in Pleasanton at the lovely Castlewood Country Club – it was a fun and spirited evening, finishing off with a good Scottish country dancing turnout.

Read the March 2018 newsletter

  • February 2018 Newsletter

February 2018 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society,

As February unfolds, I can’t help but reflect still on the season of Burns during which we celebrate the life and work of Scotland’s own Rabbie Burns – the Bard of Ayrshire, the Ploughman Poet: to Robert Burns! Congratulations to 2nd VP Allen Cary as Event Chair – for organizing and MC-ing a very successful and well-attended Burns Supper on January 20th at the lovely Family Club in San Francisco…

Read the February 2018 newsletter

  • January 2018 Newsletter

January 2018 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society:

I’ll begin by wishing us all a Happy New Year! May it also be a productive and prosperous year – which continues to build upon the good work we’ve been about in 2017. Before highlighting some of the activities and events that we look forward to in 2018, I would like to first go back in time briefly to recall some of the more memorable moments and events from the past year.

Read the January 2018 Newsletter

  • December 2017 Newsletter

December 2017 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society of San Francisco,

In this festive season – I would like to first wish you: Happy Saint Andrew’s Day! Indeed on November 25th we celebrated the occasion – our 154th Annual Banquet & Ball. Kudos and many thanks to 1st VP-event coordinator Francesca McCrossan (and her support team) who put on a fantastic event for the Society; and our many appreciative partners and guests!

Read the December Newsletter

  • October Newsletter

October Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society of San Francisco,

Normally I would like to lead off with cheerier news, but the passing of beloved Past President – William (Bill) Campbell Blair on September 21st is what’s on my mind. Fortunately, I had the opportunity of visiting with Bill and his family prior to his passing, so I will keep firmly in mind the pleasure of that last remembrance.

Read the October 2017 Newsletter

  • September 2017 Newsletter

September Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society of San Francisco:

I’ll start off the September newsletter and dive right into my report of the weekend to which we look forward each year with anticipation – The Pleasanton Highland Games…the event’s 152nd annual this year. The Caledonian club reminds us that the Games have always gone on – despite World Wars, the Great Depression, even the 1906 San Francisco earthquake…..

September Newsletter

  • Summer Newsletter

August Newsletter

Dear Saint Andrew’s Society of San Francisco:

I don’t know about you, but for me this Summer is going all too quickly – creating mostly good memories as it passes.

As a preface to my Summer update, I would like to first mention briefly the June members’ meeting – to thank Roger Weed for guiding us through a Scotch Whisky tasting tour of the five regions: Highlands, Lowlands, islands, Islay, and Speyside.

Read the Summer 2017 Newsletter

  • June 2017 Newsletter

June Newsletter

Dear Saint Andrew’s Society of San Francisco:

It’s hard to believe that with June’s arrival – we are now almost half way through the year! Although we will be going on recess (meeting-wise) for the Summer months July and August…it promises to be a busy season nonetheless.

Read the June 2017 Newsletter

  • May 2017 Newsletter

May 2017 Newsletter

Dear Members & Friends,

Hopefully we’re all enjoying May’s lovely Spring weather. Reflecting back on last month’s meeting – I can’t remember a monthly meeting not being opened by Piper Jek, but such as the unusual case in April. With Jek & Jean away – out of town, we were fortunate to benefit from new member Rory Gammell’s many talents…piping.

Read the May 2017 newsletter

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April 2017 Newsletter

Dear Members and Friends,

It’s been an eventful month – let’s get started… It’s not every week that one gets to have breakfast with a Head of State.  Well, that was my honor this week during First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s Bay Area visit – timed around Scotland week and Tartan Day.

April 2017 Newsletter

  • March 2017 Newsletter

March 2017 Newsletter

Dear Members & Friends

Happily, I begin this month’s report with the news that Past President John Allison is free and clear of the cancer for which he had been receiving treatment last year. It was nice to see John & Terry out – at Gerry Sample’s memorial service in February; and then to catch up with John over lunch last week.

Read the March 2017 Newsletter


  • February 2017

February 2017 Newsletter

Dear Members & Friends
Sadly, I must report the passing of our own dear Gerry Sample who served the St. Andrew’s Society with such commitment and devotion in so many roles for so many years, decades even, including as President (1976 – 1979). Gerry, you will be missed greatly—we wish you Godspeed; and we are here to help assist your family in whatever way possible.

Read February 2017 Newsletter

  • Jan-2017

January 2017 Newsletter

Dear St. Andrew’s Society of San Francisco and readership:
First I would like to wish you a Happy New Year! I also want to say what an honor and humbling experience it is to have been nominated and confirmed as President for the term 2017–18. I’m looking forward to serving our membership, our Mission; and also upholding our proud legacy, dating back to our founding in September 1863!

Read January 2017 Newsletter

  • december-2016

December 2016 Newsletter

Mark your calendars for Saturday, Decemeber 31st at 1:00 pm for a very warm annual Hogmanay celebration at the Fire House. This will allow u the entire evening afterwards for further carousing !!! Last week the Rt Honorable the Viscount Thurso, together with his very able colleague Simon Bergenrith joined various scoundrels from our Society to discus “Visit Scotland,”a government agency to encourage more tourism (picture on page 2). We very quickly solved all their problems and a good time had by all.

Read December 2016 Newsletter

  • november-2016

November 2016 Newsletter

I hope to see you all on the 26th at our Ball!! We are very proud that the Australian Consul General Oldfield will be joining us as our Honored Guest this year.
The pace of activity is picking up as we approach the Holiday season. I enjoyed the St. Andrew’s of Oakland Ball last week. They had 180 attending and a very young crowd!

Read November 2016 Newsletter

  • oct-2016

October 2016 Newsletter

Last week the BBS arranged a small cocktail reception at the PUC for several of the Anglo groups here in the city to meet the new BCG Andrew Whittaker. We were all delighted to have the BCG attend himself with his lovely wife Alex. Andrew appears to be very active and I expect to see him around a lot. He is a charming young man. As I get more grey hair so many people are now appearing to me as charming young people.

Read October 2016 Newsletter

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September 2016 Newsletter

OK now you’ve had your summer break. Time to get back to get back to work. First on the agenda—do you have your official St. Andrews name tag? Susan Goodier can provide complimentary name tags but there’s a catch—requests will only be entertained in person at a monthly meeting!

Read September 2016 Newsletter


  • June 2016 Newsletter

June 2016 Newsletter

The big event was of course the Queen’s Birthday Ball. This was a joint event sponsored by the St. Andrew’s, the BBS and the BABC (British American Business council). The folks at the BBS headed by Kathleen really did the yeoman’s work. About 250 attended.

Read the June 2016 Newsletter

  • April Newsletter Cropped

April 2016 Newsletter

I’d like to say a special thanks to Francesca McCrossan and Fred Rutledge who have been doing yeoman’s work in helping to interface with the Queen’s Birthday group which includes
the BBS and the BABC.  I hope all of you will consider attending this once in a lifetime event.

Read the April 2016 Newsletter

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March 2016 Newsletter

Well how much rain does it take to end a drought? I hope it is not infinite. But we won’t melt no matter how it feels we might. The rain is not stopping our partnership with the
University of Edinburgh which continues to grow in beneficial ways. We are very happy to serve as their Norcal “Club House.”

Read the March 2016 Newsletter

  • January Newsletter cropped

January 2016 Newsletter

On Thursday, December 31st The St. Andrew’s Society of San Francisco opened its’ doors and heart to members and friends alike in celebration of our annual Hogmanay event. It was very enjoyable and a well-attended event.

Read the January 2016 Newsletter

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December 2015 Newsletter

On Saturday evening, November 28th our St. Andrew’s Society of San Francisco enjoyed a moderately well-attended annual Banquet & Ball in our 153rd year. President Koyil and his wife Tsering were joined at the President’s table by the Heads of several sister societies:

Read the December 2105 Newsletter

  • October Newsletter Image

October 2015 Newsletter

On August 28th our normally quiet summer was enlivened by the arrival of some 60 people at the Firehouse, a mix of outbound freshmen headed to The University of Edinburgh for the fall semester, their parents and some recent alumni. We proudly hosted this orientation event, coordinated by …..

View the October 2015 Newsletter

  • September Newsletter

September 2015 Newsletter

At the foot of Leith Walk, the bustling thoroughfare that connects Edinburgh with its old port of Leith, you walk through the tacky Anywheresville of the Kirkgate shopping centre, between the garish frontages of ubiquitous chain stores, to emerge suddenly where lush…

View the  September 2015 Newsletter>

  • StAndrewsJuneNewsletter

June 2015 Newsletter

A very special thanks to Ian Baird for heroically taking over the presentation at our last meeting. At our May meeting I put forward an idea for discussion at our last meeting to establish a “St. Andrew’s Society Service Medal” to recognize those who contribute to our Society or City.

View the June 2015 Newsletter >

  • May 2015 Newsletter

May 2015 Newsletter

The average American might have at least a foggy understanding of “lords” in British circles, but would almost certainly draw a blank if asked to define a “king of arms.” That is the name given to the senior officer with royal authority to grant or recognize armorial bearings in Scotland. Other monarchical countries, including those in the British Commonwealth, have equivalent

View the May 2015 Newsletter >