Class Notes | Obituaries
Showing class notes submitted in last 6 months
John P. Matheu '40 writes: "The new magazine is much better—with a wider scope of activity." He'd also like to hear more about fellow Santa Clara grads from his era if they're still with us.
Debbie Vander Zwaag '99, MBA '06 is a project manager at Driscoll’s Strawberry Associates, in Watsonville. Prior, Debbie was with Novellus Systems (now Lam Research). She joined the Humane Society of Silicon Valley's board of directors in 2014. Debbie and her husband, Bill Johanson, a mechanical engineer with Applied Materials in Sunnyvale, have lived in Gilroy for more than 10 years. They have for two dogs (Lucky and Bear), two cats (Sophia and K-2) and two turtles, (Chard and Zin, whose names were influenced by the fact that Bill is an avid hobby winemaker). Debbie's volunteer activities include Furry Friends Pet Assisted Therapy and the Red Cross Disaster Relief.
Seher Siddiqee '14 is a chaplain-in-residence at Georgetown University and is a student at Hartford Seminary, where she is finishing her M.A. in Islamic Studies with an emphasis in Muslim-Christian Relations and Graduate Certificate in Islamic Chaplaincy. She was born and raised in the Sunnyvale, California. She spent much of her free time at SCU in Campus Ministry working with the Interfaith Council. Seher has been deeply involved in her local Muslim and Interfaith communities; being a part of both and building bridges is one of her biggest passions.
Heather Schlenger '04 is a recipient of CalCPA's Women to Watch Award. She is a tax senior manager at Moss Adams, where she handles tax planning, compliance and tax provision preparation for closely held food and agriculture operations as well as manufacturing and distribution organizations. She is a front-runner in women's leadership initiatives at Moss Adams, is on the local YMCA board as treasurer, and is a co-founder of the nonprofit Global Leadership Education Assistance Ministry, which seeks to eliminate poverty through education.
Alex Potts '89 is president and CEO of Loring Ward Group Inc. and of the SA Funds – Investment Trust. Previously, he was the COO of LWI Financial Inc. The Loring Ward serves and supports select financial advisors across the United States.
Louise Pon-Barry '01 is in her 14th year teaching and in her eleventh year at Kittredge School, in San Francisco. She earned her multiple subject teaching credential and MA in Education from the University of San Francisco. Ms. Pon-Barry enjoys working with kindergarten and first-grade children for their fresh and unique outlook on life. She strives to make the learning process enjoyable and exciting for each child. Ms. Pon-Barry’s website is available at: http://msponbarry.weebly.com.
Veronika Olah '04, Lauren Lopez '11, and Angelica Salinas '13 made an uncanny discovery that they make up three of only about a hundred Disney Adventure Guides in the world. Along with local experts, the guides ensure that travelers feel a connection to the people, culture, and traditions of each destination visited. Bringing Bronco spirit to their competitive positions as tour guides with talents for storytelling, Angelica guides in Wyoming, Lauren in Hollywood and San Francisco, and Veronika on the Danube River Cruise.
Santa Clara Librarian Angela Ocana '03 is a recent winner of the California Library Association’s Young Adult Services Award.
“I was nominated by teens who attend the Northside Library and the branch manager,” says Ocana, blown away by the honor. “BAYA, which stands for Bay Area Young Adult Librarians, gives this award of achievement to recognize the accomplishments of an exceptional librarian working in young adult services in a school or public library. The award comes with $500 and a one-year membership into BAYA.”
“Giving teens their own space, providing dynamic programming, and just being a mentor is very important,” Ocana says. “My biggest philosophy about working with teens is just to listen to what they are saying and to provide a safe environment for them to be themselves.”
Ocana has been overseeing Northside Library’s new teen library council, consisting of about 20 members. At meetings, teens give input on upcoming programs. “For example, teens from the library council came up with the idea for the epic Nerf wars at the teen blacklight party in May and they helped set this up,” Ocana says. “The blacklight party came with blacking out the room, and there were glow sticks, and glow-in-the-dark face and nail painting. We sprayed the Nerf bullets with glow paint and put them into Nerf guns, also sprayed with glow paint, and we played Capture the Flag.”
Ocana has also headed programs for adults at Northside Library, such as a lecture on craft liquor, a feng shui workshop, and a Jane Austen-themed tea party. At Central Park Library, Ocana worked on this year’s STEM Innovation Bowl and in a previous year, she organized Sustainable U, a program that encouraged simpler living with offerings such as a seed library and workshops on bread making, cooking seafood and gardening.
Mihir Nanavati '03 has joined the executive team of Redwood City, Calif.-based Kahuna, a communication automation company, as senior VP of product. Nanavati previously spearheaded numerous initiatives for Tradeshift, Hightail, and Adobe Systems. He is a graduate of the University of Mumbai and Santa Clara University.
"The summer after I completed my M.A. in pastoral ministry, I went to Vietnam to teach English for the Diocese of Phat Diem," writes Gary Meegan M.A. '07. "This is my 10th summer there. I blog about my experience at garyinvietnam.blogspot.com. I do it to help people understand what the Catholics in the north of the country go through. They are very poor but proud."
Sheldon P. McFarland MBA '13 is vice president of Portfolio Strategy & Research at Loring Ward, a company that serves and supports financial advisors in the United States. His responsibilities include management of the Portfolio Strategy Group, oversight of the Investment Planning Center, and development of tools to support advisors.
Carol McCandless M.A. '96 has been an enthusiastic adjunct associate professor teaching religion at San Joaquin Delta College, in Stockton, California, since 2000.
Andrew C. Kim J.D. '98 has been appointed a judgeship in the Los Angeles County Superior Court by Gov. Gerry Brown '59. Kim has served as a deputy district attorney at the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office since 1999. He was a contract attorney at Jackson and Abdalah from 1998 to 1999.
Judith Maxwell Greig M.A. '81, 60, of Belmont, has been appointed to the California Student Aid Commission by Gov. Gerry Brown '59. Greig has been president at Notre Dame de Namur University since 2009, where she has held several positions since 1988, including provost, dean of the School of Education and Leadership and senior advisor to the president. She was adjunct faculty at San Jose State University from 1987 to 1988 and a teacher at the Old Orchard School from 1977 to 1984. Greig is a member of the Council of Independent Colleges Board of Directors and the California Campus Compact Executive Board.
Judy Bruner MBA '86, retired executive VP, administration, and CFO of SanDisk Corporation, has been appointed to the Varian board of directors.
Bruner, 58, served as the chief financial officer for SanDisk from 2004 to this year when it was acquired by Western Digital (NASDAQ: WDC). She also served as senior vice president and chief financial officer for Palm, Inc. from 1999 to 2004. She has held prior management positions in finance and administration with 3Com Corporation, Ridge Computers, Inc. and Hewlett Packard Company.
Camille Bates M.A. '16, is the newest resource specialist/special education professional at James Monroe Middle School, in Ridgecrest, California. She takes a bright, passionate approach to her role with her students.
“I believe in the capacity for change and people’s ability to be better than they have been,” she says. “I’m focusing on their psycho-emotional well-being, what gets in the way of them learning, and how they talk about what’s happening so they can participate in their learning.
Her background in social justice work also informs everything she does. Part of her own lesson plans include having her students keep record of the good things said about them, have them practice hearing positive things about themselves and then writing them down.
“Schools are our closest connection to community — they draw us together like no other social institution,” Bates says. “There is no other capacity that comes together for the sake of educating a child. That’s a beautiful and special thing about our culture.”