Member Monday & a Happy Anniversary!

In 1960, 20-30 International and Active International both voted unanimously to merge into 1 organization. Today we’ll highlight the three presidents.

“The DATE of August 1, 1960 will be remembered as the most significant in our history since the founding of 20-30, for on that day the merger of Active and 20-30 International became a reality. Both groups will retain their present administrative structures until the joint international convention in Tucson next summer, but for all other intents and purposes we are now one combine organization.” – Clint McClure, President, 20-30 International

“It is a logical step enabling two service-minded groups to combine their talents and enthusiasm in order to better serve their communities and their countries.” – Owen Barnes President, Active International

W.W.T.C. – Favorite Find

Wednesday Weekly Theme Challenge (July 27 – Aug 2): Favorite Find

This theme could be applied in a variety of ways.

  • a) What’s something you discovered about yourself while in Active 20-30?
  • b) Or a favorite tradition your clubs does?
  • c) How about a neat find at a location that has a connection to 20-30? Like a plaque on the wall at a store, a news article about an event on a diner menu? (I’ll have to find the info on that, it was pretty neat). A dedication at a park?
  • d) How about an item that you got or someone shared with you?
  • e) How about finding out some celebrities were in the club or an honorary member? Two honorary members that come to mind are Frank Sinatra and Charles Lindbergh.

Recently I was doing a search and came across a post in a Facebook group for Hawthorne residents, where someone had a photo of her dad with a 20-30 sign that he painted. She was trying to get more information on what 20-30 was. I was happy to tell her.

“My Dad worked at the Navy base in Hawthorne after WWII. I wasn’t born until 1953. I never remember hearing about this group. Sounds like a group they might want to revive.”:

Play along. Comment below or tag this page in your post for any stories or photos you would like to share.

Month of Highlights for the 1920’s

With the start of September this week, it’s 10 months until our 2022 Convention – Centennial Celebration (JUL 13 – JUL 17, 2022)!

We are going to switch from weekly themed memory prompts, to sharing the Active 20-30 timeline. Each month we’ll focus on one decade and have posts on timeline of events, photos, stories, and member spotlights.

Our story begins in 1922, in two different cities. Aberdeen, Washington and Sacramento, California.

20-30 Women & Fashion

The women auxiliary clubs and some current clubs have held fashion shows through the years. They have offered these shows as part of the women’s events during conventions, or as part of fundraising events that the men’s clubs were hosting, or as their own events.

“Balcony Scene at Brookdale lodge yesterday during the 20-30 Anns’ fashion show-luncheon features Mrs. William Martine modeling a pink and white checked tissue gingham frock from Rittenhouse’s. Interested spectators are (l-r) Mesdames Dolly Thornton of the Albuquerque, N. Mex., “Thunderbirds,” Dina Madison, Nancy Arno and Opel Napolitano of the Coronado “Beachcombers.” Nearly 100 of the 20-30 convention delegates’ wives attended the mid-day event, arranged for their entertainment by the Santa Cruz 20-30 Anns headed by Mrs. Dick Hackbarth. Miss Susan Bronson, reigning Miss California, was a special guest, accompanied by her mother, Mrs. Ray Bronson of San Lorenzo. Tomorrow the 20-30 wives are invited on a sightseeing bus tour and in the evening will return to Brookdale lodge with their husbands for the closing installation of officers and dinner-dance beginning at 7 o’clock.”

“20-30 Anns Looks At Fashion”. Santa Cruz Sentinel, 23 June 1960, Accessed 21 July 2021.

Eleanor Roosevelt on 20-30

What I love most about history are the personal stories that you can read about and really feel. Going through and reading these Twenty-Thirty Magazines, we get to read articles that have that personal connection to events in the past. I enjoy seeing these little slices and how they affected people in our age group, not just the big world picture. Here is one article (of several during the 1940’s) that touches on World War II and a talk with a lady that has become such an inspiration to so many.

Eleanor Roosevelt on 20-30
By Edward Ryan

Never in all our history has a First Lady so thoroughly impressed herself upon the national mind as has Mrs. Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Opinion as to the worth of her activity is hopelessly divided, but the sincerity of her interest in national problems and events is graciously admitted by her friends and critics alike. When applied to Eleanor Roosevelt the term “First Lady” is not just a flattering compliment but a simple statement of truth. With a quiet ease she has assumed the duties incumbent upon a President’s wife and is prosecuting them in what she considers the best and most direct way.

Not long ago Mrs. Roosevelt and your editor were, by a whim of chance, fellow passengers aboard the Union Pacific’s “Pony Express” making the run from Ogden to Denver. We happened to sit across from one another in the diner, so I sent her a note asking if she would be good enough to grant an interview for the pages of THE TWENTY-THIRTIAN. She answered she would be more than happy to do so and sent someone to bring me to her compartment where she and Miss Thompson, her secretary and traveling companion, received me.

The ease with which the First Lady welcomes one is a warming experience. When she smiles and extends her hand you have a feeling that she means it, that she is sincere, and that the act is not simply just another of the sometimes bothersome social amenities.

“You have asked me to tell you something,” she said, “but I’m sure that you have more to tell me about the 20-30 organization than I could possibly tell you about anything at all.”

That remark is typical of her.

Without delay and as briefly as possible I sketched the whole 20-30 picture for her, beginning with the founding of the first club and bringing the story completely up to date. Mrs. Roosevelt listened intently and seemed especially interested when 20-30’s objects were mentioned. In the middle of an explanation of our national objectives she placed a question.

“Civilian fingerprinting?” she queried. “Tell me more about that.”

I told her the history of the project and of our success with it. She was particularly pleased when I mentioned that we advocated voluntary fingerprinting for means of identification only.

“I myself have been fingerprinted,” she said, “and quite agree that it is an excellent protection. I am very much in favor of your plan since it stresses the words voluntary and identification. Fingerprinting for everyone under those conditions is certainly to be desired, but I would most certainly oppose any plan to fingerprint forcibly any particular group of our population.”

I gathered that she was thinking of the proposed plan to fingerprint aliens and asked if that was the group to which she had reference.

“Aliens, or any other group,” she answered. “Such procedure is basically unfair and essentially un-American. It is discrimination of the worst sort and should never be indulged in.”

I assured her that 20-30 would never be discriminating if only because Twenty-Thirtians had no wish to be discriminated against. That brought us around neatly to the war situation on which I sought to trap her, but Mrs. Roosevelt can’t be trapped.

“Speaking of discrimination,” I said, “it seems to me that all this war talk is discrimination, too. It discriminates against young men in general and 20-30 in particular.”

But Mrs. Roosevelt refused to be drawn out. She smiled and refrained from comment.

“These are bad times,” I continued, “and I’d like to know what advice you’d give to the young men living in these times. I’d like to know, in fact, just what advice you’d give to those of your sons who are of 20-30 age.”

She thought a moment and then began her reply, speaking slowly and emphatically.

“We must of course realize,” she said, “that the world today is not at all secure. That some sort of an effort on the part of our young men is necessary we are aware, and in my opinion that effort should be to remain as sane and calm in the present circumstances as is possible. Instead of being what one might call “war minded” in the extreme, we must continue our effort to solve our peacetime problems for today we are the only great nation in the world who can do just that. There are many things in our domestic life in need of our attention and we must not let the present conflict so distract us that we fail to give these things the full consideration they deserve.”

From there we went to our other national objectives and Mrs. Roosevelt strongly voiced her approval of Safety Sally and the Blood Donning Project. The varied local activities of our individual clubs were discussed and Mrs. Roosevelt showed herself to be in favor of them all. But we had mentioned the war and it seemed to be in both our minds so we were not long in getting back to that unpleasant subject.

“If the war continues,” the First Lady said, “we are certain to feel its effects. Although we must continue to hope and pray for non-involvement, we should bend every effort to end the war and we should be giving a great deal of thought to what kind of a peace we can help to obtain once the war comes to an end.”

I wanted to know just what sort of a peace that should be.

“It must be a just peace,” she said, “and it must give security and protection from force. For when force is abroad in the world there cannot be any security. Should force ever become a basic instrument of this nation’s policy the results to us would be most unfortunate. We would have to pay more and more for defense and it would not be long until we would be unbearably burdened with taxes the greatest part of which would be used to pay for armaments. Our job, as I see it, is to demand of the warring nations that the peace they will eventually conclude be a fair peace so that from that peace may be built something which may insure an even greater peace. They must be prevailed upon to adjust their grievances fairly so that the matter may be decided once and for all. And force as an instrument of national policy must be ruled out.”

I remained silent considering her statement.

“Not long ago,” she continued, “I read the galleys of a book shortly to be published which deals with the problems of young people from eighteen on. I remember one chapter in particular which was written by a young English Army Officer. He makes the statement that the Allies won the last war but that they lost the peace. He realized the vindictiveness of the Treaty of Versailles, that peace treaty which has destroyed peace. He goes on to state that the obligation of youth in this present war is to be concerned not so much with winning the war as in winning the peace.”

I was still silent.

“So when the time comes we must be in a position to win the peace so that justice may be accorded to all belligerents and security given to them as well as to the rest of the world. At least this is how I see the problem. I should like to tell 20-30 that.”

I assured her that her message would be delivered duly and after a brief chat about things less weighty I took my leave.

I couldn’t help thinking that in Eleanor Roosevelt 20-30 had a good friend, a friend to whom we could go, should ever we need an intercessor before the high tribunals of the land. Her charm is inescapable and her graciousness is a characteristic of which a queen might be envious.

Perhaps she’ll be the mistress of the White House for another four years and perhaps she is destined to leave it soon. Either way it will not matter, for she has carved for herself a place of honor on the American scene entirely independent of the political fortunes of her husband, and I for one am proud of the fact that she knows and is interested in 20-30. She is not only the First Lady – she is also a great one.

(The Twenty-Thirtian, June 1940, p.7,12)

Power & Leadership (#4 – Feb. 22-28, 2021)

I’m taking this week’s theme to highlight the growth of leadership in our clubs. Learning the skills needed in leadership positions can help with a person’s career later on. If you take a look at our Wikipedia page, you can find several notable people that got where they are by learning new skills while in Active 20-30.

This is Sherrill “Bud” Halbert of the Porterville #28 Club (California). He became National President of the Association of 20-30 Clubs in 1932.

from Sacramento Bee Newspaper, 1932

From his Wikipedia page: “Sherrill Halbert (October 17, 1901 – May 31, 1991) was a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California and the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California.”

© 2001 United States District Court for the Eastern District of California Historical Society

Who are some notable past actives from your club? What else do you think of regarding the word “power”? Does that mean physical strength, political power, or electrical power? Did your club help a charity in some “power” related way? Do you have / had a member with the last name of “Power”? Yes. It’s a vague theme on purpose 🙂 It’s whatever the theme sparks in you.

(These weekly themes are inspired by 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks)

Happy Anniversary to Sacramento #1

Every year, we raise our glasses all around the world to celebrate Sacramento #1’s anniversary and the beginning of Active 20-30 International.

I would ask for stories, memories, and photos of people’s time in the organization. Back in December 2012, we celebrated turning 90 years. I came across a post from Robert Allen who is a past active of Sacramento #1. It continues to be a wonderful memory that I would like to re-share here with you. Cheers!!


Happy 90th birthday to the Active 20-30 Club Sacramento #1. It is……very simply……the greatest service organization in the world!!! President Richard Nixon, Congressman Robert Matsui, Senator Barry Goldwater, Governor Pete Wilson and hundreds of the most influential businessmen in the Sacramento Region have been members of the Active 20-30 Club. The club was founded here in Sacramento and has since grown worldwide helping young people come together for leadership development, personal growth and friendship. All while helping the children in their respective communities! I am a PROUD past active member of the organization and am very humble to be part of it over the years!

I still think many people in the community have no idea what we do. A singles group…….a networking organization? Really?? So far from the truth. Our “hands on” events focus on having 20-30 members actually spend time with and help underprivileged or disadvantaged kids in the area. Our events range from our annual Michael Smythe Cancer Kids Party to the Back to School and Holiday Shopping Sprees that give us the opportunity to buy clothing and toys for children in need. Don’t get me wrong. We throw a great party and have thrown many of them to raise millions of dollars. Just so you know……100%…..that is 100% of proceeds go to charity!!!!! Nothing goes to anyone in the club. Listen to these numbers. In Sacramento Club #1 alone there have been thousands of men, that have raised millions of dollars, helping tens of thousands of children, assisting hundreds of non-profits and volunteering hundreds of thousands (maybe millions) of man hours!!! Just in Sacramento.

The most moving event for me was a few years ago at the Mike Smythe Cancer Kids Party. Sitting on plastic chairs, face to face with a girl that was about 7 and fighting cancer. Her parents and healthy sister watched from across the room while eating pizza. I was painting a snowflake on her cheek. I am NOT an artist. My buddy Robb W. in the club is a pro at this, but not me. I held her chin with my left hand and painted with my right. We talked about Christmas, her family, her medical staff and school. Her face was not far from mine and we talked eye to eye as I tried to paint. She was a beautiful little girl and wearing a blonde wig. At one point I told her that “her hair” was beautiful (and winked)…just letting her know I knew it was a wig. The party wasn’t over, but my painting was complete. As her parents walked over I said something like, “You are a special girl. Have a Merry Christmas and YOU ARE A BEAUTIFUL GIRL whether you have hair or not.” …and I smiled! I am not sure if it was the right thing to say or not……she is not my daughter……I only met her that day. I went on to my next attempt at face painting. Later when it was close to the end of the party a man’s voice gave a little shout across the room….”Rob!” I turned to look and there she was with her family waving as they walked out the door……..HER DAD RUBBING HER BALD HEAD AND SMILING!

Our motto is timeless and is as true today as it was 90 years ago! “One never stands so tall as when kneeling to help a child.”….or in my case painting a snowflake on a child’s cheek.

Past Members: Jose Napoleon Duarte

This will be a series for sharing Notable people that were past members of Active 20-30. If you know of any that we should highlight, please reach out at:

Go visit the Active 20-30 Club Wikipedia page. Now, scroll down the page to the Membership section and take a look at the list of notable members & alumni.

From Jose Napoleon Duarte Wikipedia page

I was recently looking for information on a different past member when I came across this (AP) news story regarding Jose Napoleon Duarte. Within the article, it states he was a “founder of the Salvadoran branch of the Active 20-30 Club” Which I am pretty sure was in 1952 (when it was 20-30 International).

He went on to become President of El Salvador from June 1, 1984 to June 1, 1989. What was interesting (to me) was the number of times he had to leave El Salvador, but he kept coming back.

Makes me wonder if we can find more information on his time with Active 20-30. Did he learn about 20-30 while going to college at Notre Dame? Or from other Salvadorians? What was his exact involvement with 20-30?


Remembering: Lt. Col Herbert Mills, Jr.

Today we are honoring Lt. Col Herbert Mills, Jr. Herbert came to El Paso in 1939 from Sterling City and joined the Active 20-30 Club of El Paso #96 shortly thereafter. In 1940 he joined the Army and was stationed in Fort Bliss before being deployed to the European Theatre. While serving with the 33rd Armored Regiment, 3rd Armored Division he was awarded a Silver Star and Bronze Star for his actions. On November 17th, 1944 near Scherpenseel and Hastenrath, Germany, Lt. Col Mills led his task force over difficult terrain, across dense minefields and through devastating enemy fire to secure a vital objective. On the initial day of the assault, one of his tanks was hit blocking the advance of the column through a lane cleared of mines. Lieutenant Colonel Mills dismounted from his tank, personally directed engineers in clearing another lane, and led his force through the minefield. While reorganizing his position, a shell struck within a few feet of him, causing injury to his right leg. Though in much pain, he refused medical aid and continued his reconnaissance on foot to improve his positions. Although he lost all officers of his medium tank companies and thirty-three tanks, Lieutenant Colonel Mills kept his force effectively organized and, in the face of enemy opposition, captured his objective without infantry support. While Lieutenant Colonel Mills was in the process of communicating with higher headquarters to report that his mission was accomplished, a shell struck the building above his tank, fatally wounding him. For his actions he was awarded the army’s second-highest honor, the Distinguished Service Cross. He was survived by his wife Claire Mills and his two year old son Herbert Mills III.

Members from New Mexico in WWII

To kick off the week of Memorial Day, we would like to take today to remember the Active 20-30 members from New Mexico who lost their lives during WWII. While it may seem odd to focus on the state instead of a club or an individual, their stories are tragically similar. All of these men were also members of various units of the New Mexico National Guard and were inducted into federal service as The 200th Coast Artillery Regiment on January 6th, 1941, for one year of active duty training. They were chosen for an assignment in the Philippines over a regiment from Arkansas because of the fluency in Spanish and arrived in Luzon in September of 1941.

On December 8th, 1941, a mere 10 hours after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Japanese bombers appeared over the horizon in the Philippines. After 3 months of fierce fighting, the 76,000 starving and sick American and Filipino defenders in Bataan surrendered on April 9, 1942. While they managed to survive the infamous Bataan Death March on which 7,000–10,000 POWs died or were murdered, all but one were unable to survive their internment at the various POW camps. The lone survivor was killed when the ship taking him to Japan for interrogation was sunk in the Pacific. Some only lasted a few weeks while others lasted years but their names and stories are engraved on twelve granite columns at Bataan Memorial Park in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Those brave men were:
• Pfc. Claude Fleming, Carlsbad #202 – 6/10/1942
• 1SG George Moore, Artesia #231 – 5/20/1942
• Maj. Richard Riley, Albuquerque #103 – 11/13/1942
• Capt. Karl Schroeder, Clovis #225 – 1/19/1945
• Capt. John Beall, Clovis #225 – 2/8/1945
• Sgt. John Shields, Jr., Clovis #225 – 11/24/1942

Thank you for your service.