Class Notes | Obituaries
Showing class notes submitted in last 6 months
Amy (Whelan) Green '06 and Bryan Green welcomed Jackson Matthew Green on April 8, 2015.
Sheeva J. Ghassemi-Vanni J.D. '06 was named to Silicon Valley Business Journal's 40 under 40 list for 2016.
The 33-year-old is a labor and employment senior associate in Fenwick & West’s Mountain View office who works to interpret law as it relates to changing relationships with work and the workplace. She advises Silicon Valley’s hottest startups and established companies regarding a multitude of labor and employment issues such as hiring, progressive discipline, and termination; leaves of absence; wage and hour issues; social media; and compliance with local, state, and federal employment laws. When Sheeva realized that clients needed to be informed about shifting law on employer social media policies, she set up a Fenwick Twitter account that spreads the word about best practices. She also organized a partnership with LinkedIn to offer hiring and performance management webinars. At her urging, the firm produced short videos explaining honor vacation policies, an emerging issue for startups.
Daniel Figoni '03, MBA '07 and Elizabeth Figoni '06 welcomed their first child, Rose Cecelia Figoni, on July 11, 2016.
The Santa Clara Alumni Association welcomes Zach Plaza '07. an assistant director. Zach is focused on being an Alumni Relations regional expert, engaging our Bronco community and building relationships across the globe. Zach comes to us from nine years with the San Jose Sharks. From media relations to customer service and sales manager roles, it's fair to say he knows the Sharks well... but, he knows and loves the Broncos more! Zach truly identifies with the mantra "Once a Bronco, Always a Bronco" and couldn't be happier to be back on campus, contributing to the Alumni Association and serving the SCU community. Zach enjoys following his favorite Bay Area sports teams and spending time with his friends and family, especially his wife and their newborn son.
Zach will be managing the following chapters and groups: Central Coast, Fresno, India, Las Vegas, LGBTQ, Marin, Monterey/Salinas, New York, Orange County, Palm Springs, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Cruz, and SCU Bronco Builders Association (SCUBBA).
In June, Alaleh Kianerci J.D. ’07 joined Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen to unveil legislation that would toughen penalties for sexually assaulting an unconscious person. This move was in response to the controversial Brock Turner case, for which Kianerci was the prosecuting attorney.
Julia also does catering and wedding/personal event management for private entities through sole-proprietorship of Cocoa N' Lola, LLC. She has a strong background in French pastry with more than three years of experience as the lead pastry chef for both retail and wholesale operations.
Lindsay (Westby) Caron '04, '07 launched her Etsy shop, MyCatholicHome.etsy.com and published her first book, The Little Way for Parents of Little Ones (available on Amazon). She works as a family faith formation consultant, writes at inspiredforthejourney.com, and lives in Portland, Oregon, with her husband, James, and boys, Luke and Levi.
https://www.etsy.com/shop/mycatholichome https://inspiredforthejourney.com http://www.littlewayfamilyfaithformation.com email@example.com
Rosanna Moreno J.D. '08 recently received the State Bar of California's Wiley W. Manuel Certificate for Pro Bono Legal Services for her continued pro bono efforts on behalf of Orange County's low-income residents in need. Moreno is a volunteer attorney with the Orange County PLC's "Operation Veterans Re-Entry" program.
Issued by the State Bar of California to those with 50 or more hours of pro bono service, the certificate is named in honor of Wiley W. Manuel, an associate justice of the Supreme Court of California from 1977-1981. Judge Manuel was the first African American to serve on the state's high court.
Advising clients from the firm's Newport Beach and San Jose offices, Moreno's construction practice places particular emphasis on civil litigation. Her experience includes defending general contractors and subcontractors in construction defect litigation, as well as representation of property owners, developers and other entities and individuals in cases involving mechanics' liens, unsecured payment claims, change orders, delays, breach of contract and other construction defect related claims.
In addition to Moreno's involvement with PLC, she is a Department of Veterans Affairs accredited attorney, serves as vice-chair of the Legal/Re-Entry Working Group of the Orange County Veterans and Military Families Collaborative and is a board member of the Veterans Legal Institute. Her professional affiliations also include Los Angeles, Orange County and Santa Clara County Bar Associations, California Women Lawyers, Orange County Women Lawyers Association and the Orange County Hispanic Bar Association.
Stephanie Marquez '08 just accepted a position with Best Buddies International as the Director of Alumni Relations in Miami, FL. It is a brand new position where she will be charged with creating an Alumni Association, Alumni Board of Directors, and other new initiatives involving the Best Buddies Alumni. Best Buddies International is the world's largest organization dedicated to ending the social, physical and economic isolation of the 200 million people with intellectual and development disabilities (IDD).
Chad Eschman '08 and Matthew Johns '09, after years of collaborating in theatre, are making a short film in Los Angeles called Never Stop. They released a trailer and began their fundraising campaign in July 2016. Eschman wrote the script and is co-producing and co-starring in the film, and Johns is working as the production designer.
neverstopfilm.com instagram and facebook: @neverstopfilm twitter: @chadeschman email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Elena Marie Ebrahimian '08 received her Doctoral of Dental Surgery from the University of Pacific, Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry in San Francisco on Sunday June 12th. Dr. Ebrahimian is the daughter of Dr. Max Ebrahimian ‘75, and Tina Ebrahimian of Scotts Valley, California.
Mary “MJ” Austin MBA ’08 was selected to be on the list of 2016 Women of Influence by the Silicon Valley Business Journal. These are women “who are changing Silicon Valley’s landscape in business, nonprofits, healthcare and professional services.” Her best advice for others: Always do the best that you can—even if you don't like the role you are in—and you will be recognized/rewarded in the future.
Aruna Ravichandran M.S. ’98, MBA ’09 was selected to be on the list of 2016 Women of Influence by the Silicon Valley Business Journal. These are women “who are changing Silicon Valley’s landscape in business, nonprofits, healthcare and professional services.” If Ravichandran wasn't working in tech, she'd be a kick-ass mixed-martial arts instructor…
Caroline Freytag '09 and Nick Bratcher '09 were married in San Francisco on October 3, 2015. Having met in Swig freshman year, it was fitting that over 25 SCU alumni were in attendance, including 7 in the wedding party. They now live in Hong Kong.
Nicholas Bass '09 writes "Moved to Texas and started a new job!"
Meghan (Madden) Woody '10 and Austin Woody '08 welcomed their son, James Hamilton Woody, on December 18, 2015 in Austin, TX.
Rochelle Stowe '10 works at EnviroIssues, an agency dedicated to developing and executing comprehensive public involvement, strategic communications, and outreach plans and programs by tackling some of the thorniest public policy and environmental issues of our day. Rochelle works to improve relationships with stakeholders, from elected officials to neighboring restaurant owners. Her projects are diverse and range from designing public meetings for wastewater infrastructure to building websites about regional mass transit expansion. She thrives on finding creative solutions to any public involvement challenge. Every weekend, she joins fellow Seattleites in pools around the city for some good old-fashioned water polo, reminiscent of the days she spent competing for the Broncos.
Patrick "Pat" Glenn '10, son of John F. Glenn '91 MBA, graduated from the Anderson School of Management at UCLA with an MBA.
Michelle (Donecho) Duchesne '05, M.A. '10 and Chris Duchesne '06 welcomed their first child, Elizabeth "Betsy" Lee Duchesne on March 23, 2016.
Andrea Borgen '10 was named a 2016 Young Gun by Eater magazine for being a young talent and trailblazer in the food and restaurant industry. Barcito is a 100-seat Argentinian-style, small-plates restaurant in downtown Los Angeles with a no-tipping policy.
Borgen opened Barcito last year as a homage to her Argentinian heritage — her mother was born in the South American country and she visits both of her grandparents there regularly. "We're not trying to recreate traditional Argentine cuisine," she says, adding that a more authentically minded establishment would grill a short rib rather than braise it like her kitchen does. But, as Borgen says, "what always appealed to me about bars and cafes in Buenos Aires is the cultural meaning that they have. Those classic corner bars are pillars of their communities." That's what Barcito is all about.
Part of being a community pillar, of course, is being a responsible employer. Dishwashers at Barcito make at least $11 an hour while cooks make at least $14. All her employees also receive health care, even though the size of her staff (currently 12) means she isn't required to by law. Borgen says she's able to do this due to her no-tipping policy, and if you want to understand why this is such a big deal, you need to know a little bit about labor law in California.
The state minimum wage is rising to $15 per hour by 2022 —€” and at an even faster pace in LA. Making that burden more challenging is the fact that, unlike in most states, California doesn't have a separate, lower wage for service employees, which means owners must pay waiters the full minimum, even if they earn tips. Obviously that's super expensive for owners, who have to pay more money to more people (duh), but what's less obvious is that it exacerbates the income disparity between waiters, who often do well for themselves because they can collect tips, and cooks, who often earn less because they cannot.
So to combat that disparity, more restaurateurs in Los Angeles are levying "mandatory tips" in the form of service or admin charges, which can be distributed throughout the house as the restaurant sees fit. On top of those charges, Los Angeles and San Francisco restaurants sometimes issue separate surcharges to offset the cost of providing health care, as well as additional lines on the check for optional, additional gratuity. This all means that the price on the menu is often much lower than what the diner ends up paying, and Borgen doesn't think it's a fair deal for consumers.
"It feels ludicrous," Borgen says of the health care charge. So she's taken a more challenging course of action: She's raised wages throughout her restaurant by baking the full cost of doing business — including health care and service — into the price of her a la carte items, so that whatever the diner sees on the menu is what the diner pays. Tipping is not accepted. This Danny Meyer-style "hospitality included" policy is increasingly normal in New York, where supplementary fees are illegal, but in California, it's quite rare, because it lets restaurants keep their prices artificially low.
"At the core, what's most important to me is the idea that a restaurant is a pillar of the community."
For achieving a high level of responsibility in his career and contributing to the betterment of our region through community involvement, Britten Sessions J.D. '11 was listed in the Top 40 Under 40 in the Silicon Valley by the Silicon Valley Business Journal. Sessions is the director of the only IP pro-bono clinic in the Valley, manages the IP department at Lincoln Law School, and is a patent attorney with the Zilka-Kotab law firm in San Jose. This past year, Sessions was recognized as a leading Intellectual Property attorney by Northern California Super Lawyers Rising Stars and received the IAM 300 as one of the top 300 IP strategists in the world. He has published 8 books on intellectual property, 6 in the last year alone. Additionally, he has assisted companies in monetizing patent assets yielding over $80 million in returns. Sessions currently serves as the chair of the High Technology Section of the Santa Clara Bar Association.