Almost three months after wind-driven wildfires roared through Sonoma County, a quiet ceremony Thursday afternoon marked a new beginning for Santa Rosa Junior College.

A small crowd gathered next to the Mendocino Avenue SRJC sign at 2:30 p.m. to watch as a valley oak sapling, taken from a tree that was felled during a storm in 2014, was placed in the ground. Called the “Rotary Phoenix Tree,” the planting by Rotary International President Ian Riseley and SRJC President Frank Chong marked a celebration of hope and renewal for the college, this year celebrating its centennial. Rotarians also presented a $10,000 donation to the Santa Rosa Junior College Fire Relief Fund, which aims to help students, faculty and staff who lost their homes in the fires.