Diablo Woodworkers


Founder of Diablo Woodworkers

Bill Tarleton - 1997



THE ORIGIN OF THE DIABLO WOODWORKERS:

Bill TarletonIn 1997 Bill Tarleton placed an ad in a weekly periodical called "Woodworkers Network". He asked if there were men and women in the Contra Costa area that would be interested in starting a club for woodworkers. He received several responses and scheduled an evening meeting at his house to discuss the creation of an organization. That first meeting was held on January 9, 1997 and was attended by five local woodworkers. Andy Anderson, one of those original members, shared his experiences from the Orange County Woodworkers in southern California. Jim Wharry, a current active member, also attended the meeting. As Bill described it, what folks wanted most was to meet other woodworkers and share ideas. Several of the attendees were given an assignment to flush out a particular issue and report back at the second meeting held on January 21, 1997 at Al Steunenberg's house. The fledgling group decided to meet at 7 pm the first Tuesday or Thursday of every month.

Information about the new club was included in Woodworker's Network's "From Our Readers" column that Bill wrote to which encouraged interested woodworkers to call Bill or meet him at the annual Home and Garden Show where he would demonstrate how to make lumber at home and how to make an apple juicer. The demos came with fresh apple juice. Bill also made a pitch for the Mt. Diablo adult school's woodworking classes and a few of the instructors started posting his name and phone number for those interested.

A number of subsequent meetings were held at Al's house. As attendance grew to 20, this small organization was named Diablo Woodworkers and the meetings were moved to the Adult Education campus in Pleasant Hill. Under the leadership of Bill Tarleton the club has grown into what we have today, over 450 on the roster and about 150 members who attend monthly meetings with regularity.



William A. (Bill) Tarleton Obituary

Bill TarletonWilliam A. (Bill) Tarleton Resident of Lafayette Passed away at his home on Nov. 4th 2012 at the age of 76 from pancreatic cancer. Born in Albany Hospital on 11-3-1936, attended Marin Grammar School, and graduated from Albany HS in 1954. Bill spent 2 years at Contra Costa College followed by earning a BA at Humboldt State College in Arcata. Following college, Bill signed up with the USAF Reserve Tactical Hospital unit in Marin County. At about the same time he was hired at Cutter Labs in Berkeley. Soon Bill married Judith Lewis. They raised 2 boys and a girl in El Cerrito, later moving to Lafayette in 1973. The marriage to Judith lasted 25 years. It wasn't long before Bill found a new "Light of His Life", Erlene Romo Kerley whose beautiful smile has charmed all of Bill's friends. Erlene, a single parent and Albany girl, raised a son, Reece Kerley. He and wife Maria Riggio live in Albany with 4 children; Joe (20), Shannon (16), Mark (12), and Dayna (10). Bill's daughter Tracy and husband Steve Renfro of San Ramon have 2 daughters, Brittany (21) and Laine (17). Son Thomas, and Anissa of Oakley, have 3 children, David (8), Danielle (4), and Delaney (2). Retired from Cutter/ Miles/Bayer in 1996, Bill jumped into his lifelong hobbies of wood and metal craft and most important fishing out the Golden Gate. Late 1996 with the help of other local woodworkers and support of the Pleasant Hill Adult School the Diablo Woodworkers was born. Now in its 16th year with over 400 members, it is becoming a strong community support group. Bill spent these past 16 years with his wife Erlene keeping the Diablo Woodworkers a most enjoyable organization. Bill also enjoyed his large garden, canning or preserving the harvest and in the fall drying Erlene's favorite persimmons. The fall also brought on Golden Delicious apples which went through his apple juicer, a converted top loading washing machine, to make the finest juice for the grandkids. Bill was predeceased by his parents, son Daniel, and ex wife Judith. He is survived by his sisters Nancy Fischer of Lafayette and Charlotte Smith of Santa Rosa. Bill asks that you tip a glass of inexpensive Merlot, his favorite, and get on and enjoy your life.



Tribute to Bill Tarleton - November 14, 2012


Bob Barnett
Bob Barnett is kicking off the event


Al Steunenberg
Al Steunenberg - one of the original members.
Andy Anderson
Bob Barnett and Andy Anderson - one of the original members.
Bill Fischer
Bill Fischer - Bill Tarleton's brother in-law
Elizabeth Lundquist
Elizabeth Lundquist
George Lucido
George Lucido-showing Bill's bowl that he (George) completed after Bill passed away.
Jeff Traeger
Jeff Traeger

Erlene Tarleton crying and Kirby Elvin giving her a hug.

Roger Giles
Tracy Renfro
Daughter Tracy Renfro, Erlene and Steve Renfro
Tom Meyers
Tom Meyers
Stan Armstrong
Stan Armstrong
Brian Condran
Brian Condran and Erlene
Peter Eames
Peter Eames - owner of our local Eames Hardware Store.
Judy Sosnowski
Judy Sosnowski
Glen Madsen
Glen Madsen
Jim Warry
Jim Warry - one of the original members
Joel Albert
Joel Albert
Ross Dileo
Ross Dileo
Wayne Shipman
Wayne Shipman
Tarleton Family
Tarleton Family: Daughter Tracy Renfro, son in-law Steve Renfro, son Reece Kerley, Erlene Tarleton, Bill's sister Nancy Fischer, and Bill Fischer.


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