Tuesday, July 29, 2008

L.A. quake and Bay Area Wake Up Call

As a geologist, I feel compelled to issue this public service announcement for our Bay Area (and L.A. and Seattle) alumni. Today's moderate (M5.4) quake in southern CA is a good reason to evaluate your preparedness for the inevitable large (M6.7) earthquake in northern California. This map shows that based on fault analysis by the U.S. Geological Survey, there is a 62% chance of a large-magnitude quake in the next 25 years or so.

This website has some good information on living in earthquake country. You can check out your risk of significant shaking in specific neighborhoods. This is important because the type of rock or soil on which your house sits is often more relevant than the distance from a specific fault.

As most can't just move, it is important to be sure to have the following on hand. This is particularly important if you have younger children:

Household Disaster Kit

Electrical, water, transportation, and other vital systems can be disrupted for several days after a large earthquake. Emergency response agencies and hospitals will likely be overwhelmed and unable to provide you with immediate assistance. To help your family cope after a strong earthquake, store a household disaster kit in an easily accessible location, preferably outdoors (not in your garage). This kit, which complements your personal disaster kits, should be in a large watertight container that can be easily moved and should hold at least a 3- to 5-day supply of the following items:

Drinking water (minimum one gallon per person per day). This means 6-10 gallons per couple.

First aid supplies, medications, and essential hygiene items, such as soap, toothpaste, and toilet paper.

Emergency lighting—light sticks and (or) a working flashlight with extra batteries and light bulbs (hand-powered flashlights are also available).

A hand-cranked or battery-operated radio (and spare batteries).

Canned and packaged foods and cooking utensils, including a manual can opener.

Items to protect you from the elements, such as warm clothing, sturdy shoes, extra socks, blankets, and perhaps even a tent.

Heavy-duty plastic bags for waste and to serve other uses, such as tarps and rain ponchos.

Work gloves and protective goggles.

Pet food and pet restraints.

Copies of vital documents, such as insurance policies and personal identification.

NOTE: Replace perishable items like water, food, medications, and batteries on a yearly basis.

End of PSA

Monday, July 28, 2008

John Weisel

Anyone heard from John lately? Someone mentioned he was still living in the East Bay area...I found this photo of him from 1986.

Northgate From Space

Courtesy of Google Maps. Click for larger image.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Sue Lockyer Update

Sue sent this along with the Castle Rock photo:

At the reunion, Mike R. and I were trying to figure out who went all the way through from Castle Rock Elementary, Foothill Intermediate through NGHS. Isn’t is strange how well you remember the folks you grew up with?

Now my kids are growing up! Cue the Twilight Zone music.

Along with my hubby, Mike, I live with my kids Andrew, 12, Fiona, 8 and Julia, 4 in Montara, CA. If you’ve never heard of Montara, you’re not the only one. It is a small town on the coast, between Pacifica and Half Moon Bay, south of SF.

I teach my kids at home. As scary as it sounds, it is actually very cool. During the school year my head is filled to overflowing with cosine, proper nouns, ancient Egypt, fractions, ABC’s, atomic structure….you get the idea. It is a bit of a stretch to teach a 4 year old her letters at the same time guiding (I don’t really teach him anymore) a 12 year old in literature or physics. But I love it. And them.

I have fun doing my own things too. Love to hike (such great hiking around here!), visit with friends (who doesn’t?) and write on my BLOG!

A Serious Attempt at Fun

Something strange: turns out my pastor’s wife in Pacifica went the NGHS too! Class of ’89. More Twilight Zone music, please.

Love the site – thanks Jeff

Castle Rock 1974

OK, now we are going WAY back in time to 1st Grade, Sue Lockyer sends this one in. Still looking for a kindergarten photo, so if anyone out there has one, please send in a high res. scan. Thanks!

I only recognize a few people in this one, let me know if I missed anyone that was a NG '86 graduate. Click on photo for larger version.

Row 1: (7) Gary Voerge
Row 2: (1) Karyn Dale, (5) Cindy Silldorff, (8) Brian Callahan
Row 3: (1) Pete Rooney, (6) Sue Lockyer, (7) Kirk Mower
Row 4: (1) Beth Schutz

Quite a contrast between the crew cut principal (Mr. Wright, with a black shirt, white tie, and brown jacket. Slick.) and the hippie teacher.

Castle Rock 1977

Here's another one from 4th Grade.

Future Northgate '86 students include (and let me know if I miss anyone, as the names aren't written on this one). Number is the column number starting from the left

Row 1: (1) Robert Dunbar, (2) Kirsten Hansen, (3) Lisa Wolters, (4) Shannon Groh, (7) Tina Cassano, (8) Caryn Gribbon
Row 2: (3) Gary Voerge, (4) Jody Matthews
Row 3: (1) Karen Eiler, (2) Jon Hastings, (3) Chrissy Winslow, (4) Kevin Ballew, (5) Mark Graham
Row 4: (2) Heidi Schexnayder, (3) Rodney Centeno, (8) Robert Trief

Castle Rock 1978

Here's a 5th Grade picture from Trief. Mrs. Malmstrom! What a great name for an elementary school teacher. Actually, it looks like both 4th and 5th grade were combined in this class.


Row 2: Debbie DeVoe, Mark Graham, Jody Matthews
Row 3: Chrissy Winslow, Robert Trief, Cari Tubb, Karyn Dale

Castle Rock 1979

I went to Castle Rock from K-6, and there were several others who did the Castle Rock-Foothill-Northgate sequence, I'm trying to compile a list, but in the meantime here are some photos from Robert Trief (thanks!).

Sadly, Castle Rock was razed a few years back.

Here is a Castle Rock 6th Grade picture. The folks who graduated from NG include:

Row 1: Andrea Braidman, Jeff Amato, Mark Graham, Lisa Bien, Debbie DeVoe, Robert Trief
Row 2: Laura Dull
Row 3: Caryn Gribbon, Robert Dunbar, Steve Berg, Lisa Wolters, Jon "Bean" Hastings, Heidi Schexnayder,
Row 4: Lisa Patterson, and last, but not least, "Susie" Lockyer

Longer Comments or Submissions

If anyone ever wants to post longer comments or other stories etc., you can always email them to me and I can make it a post instead of burying it in comments. That is, you can submit contributions that are things other than your personal bios.

Also, our semester starts around August 18 so we can expect less activity after that time.

Friday, July 25, 2008

The Teachers: An Evaluation

What was amazing to me was how little context we had for evaluating teachers. So here are my thoughts on the notables. Leave your own nominations in Comments. And I agree it is better to point out the good ones and forget the others (on whose merits our opinions might diverge)...

Hall of Fame
Sal Costanza (Counselor). I think he recommended Occidental College to me, which I was very grateful for.

Dick Friss (English). I didn't take his class for some reason, but occasionally dropped in, earning the name "The Interloper". It was only after watching the Bill Moyers special on Joseph Campbell that I became more interested in mythology and wished that I had taken his class. Clint Stewart organized some softball games, and he played.

Tom Hall (English). It took until my senior year of HS to learn how to write. My previous English teachers didn't do much to help my writing, but Mr. Hall told me directly that my writing needed a lot of work...and we did work on it, frequently. It paid off in college and now I spend much of my time writing manuscripts. Plus, we got to watch "Apocalypse Now" in class, while reading "Heart of Darkness".

Tony Martinez (Spanish). I think everyone remembers this as one of their best classes. We didn't just learn Spanish, but the conversations we had IN Spanish were really interesting. I still have the cassette of all of the songs that we would listen to and try to transcribe the lyrics. Plus, he gave me the opportunity to do an exchange in Madrid for a month. It's very sad that he is no longer with us.

Ed Arbuckle (Math). He was notable not for the math (though he was a good teacher), but for his aphorisms and catch phrases. I compiled a list of them and a few years after graduation went back to visit NG and gave it to him. "Amato, you are screwing up like a soup sandwich!" "You'll be as happy as an oversexed goat!" "When they gave California an enema, they put the hose in Bakersfield." "Cosecant...sounds like a Norwegian swear word." Unfortunately I think I lost the file sometime back...He would sneak outside to smoke cigarettes between classes. One time he decided to quit, and became really surly. That was the week, I think, that Kristin Hicks got kicked out of the class. She was upset about the way that rounding worked...it was a bad day to make a comment!

John Gishe (Math). He taught us calculus, he taught us philosophy. He was a legend, and is still teaching.

Jim Wilcox (Physics). He was a strange guy, but I actually learned a lot in his class, and we did some fun experiments.

Santo Alioto (Spanish, History). Probably the most entertaining teacher I had (or a tie with Arbuckle and Spagle). The sophomore year history class was very lame, but the Junior Year class was really fun. We even watched a selection of "Treasure of the Sierra Madre"...."Badges? We don't need no stinking badges!" (But why did we watch that? I forget the context). He was always dropping obscure references in class.

Betty Spagle (Government). Another great teacher, with a good attitude. She signed my yearbook "Why is a raven like a writing desk?" Plus, in her yearbook photo she is posing with a stuffed panda. [Correction: stuffed panda backpack]

Jeff Spoden (Social Studies). I never took a class from him, but he organized some great events. I think there was one on nuclear weapons/disarmament, and another involving some military vets, and the guy that got his legs run over by a train, during a protest.

Megan's Mysteries

From Megan:

I have a couple of Northgate Mysteries to add, and maybe some pictures later.

1. Did we really have a smoking area? Cancer Cove? Someone back me up. My children and students won't believe me that students could smoke at school. With yard supervisors, mind you.

2. English Club? Anyone but me remember this? It was the English club because we all spoke English? We thought we were VERY clever.

3. The mice from YV? They send a bunch of mice to NGHS painted blue and yellow? I have a co-teacher at my school who graduated 1987 from YV and she remembers this too. Anyone else?

Add your feedback in the comments section. Or email me some Cancer Cove photos...

Ted Wait

I've been teaching music for 13 years and playing trumpet professionally. I currently teach at Los Alisos Intermediate school in Mission Viejo, CA. where I teach 7th and 8th grade band and orchestra. I live in Carlsbad California with my wife Karen of 9 years and going. Unlike most, I went to Los Medanos College before attending San Diego State University and graduating in 1994.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Megan Smetzer Update

Good heavens, what fun that Mike Sela pointed this out to me! That is an amazing website and very clever idea, I'm glad you did it! Glad I'm not the only one who gets a bad hinkey feeling [ "hinkey"? -ed.] when thinking back to high school.

I live south of Sacramento (for 20 years now) and I have three daughters. My oldest (shown above, with Megan) is going to be a senior in high school next year. She plans to attend UC Davis and major in Art History. She will enter as a Sophomore, as she has like a 4.5, takes all AP classes and has taken like four SAT's -- I can't even understand how to read them but her counselors seem to think they are high. I feel like I should get a parent award just for getting up so freaking early on so many Saturdays. Didn't we take just one day of SAT's? She is a smarty pants that's for sure. Don't know where she got that from. Here she is at Disneyland this last spring. She works at Starbucks, texts everyone and makes us crazy like a good teenager should. She is very sweet and has inherited some of my geekdom, enough to be a fun chick to hang out with.

My dad retired a few years ago. Foothill was going to plant a tree in his honor but it's been about 10 years and we haven't seen anything yet. He and my mom travel and love to be grandparents. They are great at it!

I got married at 20, had my daughter at 23, divorced at 25. I got remarried in 1998. We have had two more daughters since then. They are now 6 and 4. I taught public elementary school (computers, science and fifth grade) for about 10 years then took off the last five to be a stay at home mom to the little girls -- actually the bigger girl actually needs me more I think. Too many boys buzzing around for my liking. In order to keep my tenure status I job-share and teach third grade one day a week. Tough life, I know. I don't know about the rest of you but I love being 40. All Grown Up and finally secure in my life.

On a funny note, I had Geri Kurpinsky's nephew in my class last year! She has two girls and lives in Georgia but her brother Jim moved here. What a fluke! I was reading my class roster and I had to ask him if he had an "Auntie Geri". When he said yes I almost fell over!

I have the following websites, including my dorky sewing podcast:

(teaching website)
(attached parenting advocacy website)
(sewing podcast)
(sewing forum I've been running for about three years)

Yea, I'm a geek. Still.


Akshai Gandhi

It appears that AG was (is) in the Air Force, graduating from the Academy in Colorado Springs. He was in the Flying Fiends of the 36th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Osan AB Korea in 95-97. His call sign was "Abu". It sounds like he is now in the Guard in South Carolina.

There is an online magazine called "Code One" that had some info about operations in Iraq:

Operation Iraqi Freedom can be summed up in the words of Maj. Akshai "Abu" Gandhi, a traditional Guardsman and an instructor pilot with the 169th Fighter Wing, South Carolina Air National Guard: "When you think about it, why would anyone want to pick a fight with us? They have to know what this country is capable of doing."

From 2004: ASOC handed me over to a TACP in the Najaf area. The weather wasn't great and the Army guys on the ground were taking fire from a building. They were more concerned about our not hitting a nearby mosque and wanted me to come in on a nonoptimal axis. I told them I wanted a different axis for their protection and that I wouldn't hit the mosque. I executed the attack, put the GBU-12 on the building, and solved their problem. Working directly with the guys on the ground is quite an experience. You want to make sure you get it right.
— Maj. Akshai Gandhi

Kevin Plazak

Kevin is in Portland and is involved (well, not exactly) with a fish called the "cichlasoma cichlid" and recently gave a talk in San Jose called "Setting up a Simple Central American Cichlid Aquarium (using convict cichlids)".

The Pacific Coast Cichlid Association is proud to announce our past Cichlid Blue Editor (the PCCA bimonthly journal), Mr. Kevin Plazak, from Portland, Oregon, as our speaker on May 10, 2008.

Mr. Kevin Plazak has kept and has bred cichlids more than 15 years. He won several publication awards from The Federation of American Aquarium Societies, which included the best Editor/Publication for six and fewer issues.

His informative speech, “Building cichlid community tanks for fun and profit" will be an interesting topic for every hobbyist.

Sean Gallagher

I found this profile of Sean on the Suite 101 site.

Sean Gallagher - Profile

I currently write movie reviews for two publications - CAPRA (Cinematic Amateur PRess Association), a bi-monthly small press publication, and The Moon Valley Tattler, a monthly community newspaper out of Arizona - and one website - www.critic.de, which concentrates on recent releases.

I was born in Texas on February 6, 1968, while my dad was stationed there in the Army. A year later, we quickly moved to New York, and from there I've lived in New Jersey, California, Washington State (I went to college there; Gonzaga University), and Canada. I moved to Brooklyn, New York this past March. I did generally okay in school, though in high school I was probably more known as the guy who wasn't afraid to show off. In college, I majored in history, and that understanding of history hopefully informs my movie reviews.

Though my father raised us on old movies, it wasn't until high school that they became an abiding passion (along with music and sports, though I'm not so passionate about the latter anymore). I like to think that I like a wide variety of movies, from low-budget to Hollywood. I also try to strip myself of any ideology in my writing (except for basic humanistic principles). I do, however, have some principles; if a movie has bad dialogue, or uses music badly (especially modern songs), that diminishes it in my view. I also read a lot of other critics and as many books on film, or books being made into films, as I can.

Mike Noh

After graduating from Berkeley with an engineering degree, decided not to become an engineer, decided to work for an investment bank, then changed my mind again and went to medical school. After stints in Baltimore and Boston, now I work as a radiologist in Reno, Nevada.

I've been married to my wife Ree for 12 years (who by the way took my last name, so her name is Ree Noh who lives in Reno) and we have one son whose 6 years old and his name is Sky. We try to ski as much as possible in the winter, play as much golf as possible in the summer, and travel whenever we get the chance.

hmnoh AT yahoo.com

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Jeff Sykes

Jeff is a lawyer in Boise, Idaho, where he specializes in litigation: Business, Employment, Construction, and Real Estate; Alternative Dispute Resolution.

He went to Cal State Chico for undergrad, and earned his law degree at Gonzaga in 1993. Since 1997 he has been a Partner at Meuleman Mollerup.

I don't think he is related to James Woods...

Ken Wirfel

Need a loan? Ken is a loan officer at CMG in Walnut Creek.

"My commitment to the highest levels of personal service ensures that your mortgage experience will be fast and smooth. You can rest assured that you will get straight talk, highly competitive rates, frequent updates on the status of your loan, and fast decisions and loan closings. You’ll also get the kind of innovative solutions to home finance that only comes with many years of experience."

In 2000, Jocelyn Marie Wirfel was born to Ken and his wife Michele.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Gayle Stansfield

There was an article in the Chronicle a few weeks ago about a Bay Area company for Numi Tea that mentioned Gayle. She went to SF State and is the Western Regional Sales Manager for Numi Organic Tea.

Megan Smetzer

Megan has a website called "Cookiepants" and another with podcasts called Material Mama.

I am a stay at home mama to three girls and part time public school teacher. I’m a native Californian. I love to travel, create, knit, sew, craft and mom.

My podcast, Material Mama is available every few weeks. Fashion and craft sewing chatter to help me stay sane.

Mark Schmidt

Mark is working in San Rafael in the printing business. Shown here with his wife Susan at a Marin County benefit.

Forest Investment Group, Inc. announces the acquisition of Guarantee Mailing Services, LLC, 65 Paul Drive, San Rafael on Friday, July 7, 2006. Two, local, long-time Novato residents, Mark Schmidt and Dave Brooks, the owners of Forest Investment Group, Inc., noted that both companies have been located in San Rafael for more than 20 years and serve many small business and non-profit groups in Marin County.“This is a solid, strategic fit for us” noted Mr. Schmidt. “The strengths of Guarantee Mailing Services, LLC coupled with the expertise of Unicorn Printing Specialists (3175 Kerner Blvd. in San Rafael, another operating unit owned by the Company), should be a positive move for the market.

Unicorn has a strong printing base and has been in the presorted mailing business for several years. The acquisition of Guarantee Mailing Services will expand that base providing more extensive services for both large scale as well as smaller mailers.”Forest Investment Group, Inc. is a family-owned business established in 2003. With this acquisition, eleven employees will be serving the Marin County community with quality printing and presorted mailing services. Strong customer service is a highlight of their operation and should provide the impetus for strong growth.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Site photos

In case people don't know, you can click on the photos in each post for a larger version, if available.

Clint Stewart

I got a geography degree from Berkeley and a law degree from the University of Utah in 1994. I have been living in Salt Lake and practicing commercial real estate law ever since. Perhaps the most notable thing about me is really about my wife, Kris, who I married in 2001. Kris is from Singapore, and has added an unanticipated asian flair to my lifestyle.

The web site is amazing and its great to see everyone’s bios and photos. When Kris saw Jeff’s photos of Mt. Diablo she said “wow, I didn’t know you were skinny and had long hair.” I guess it really was that long ago. Thanks Jeff.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

75 People

Up to 75 personal updates now. Don't be shy, join the fun, names can be changed to protect the innocent!

Billy Schaub

BILLY SCHAUB ~ He has opened for The Ramones, Chris Isaak, Creedence Clearwater Revisited and Drama Rama.

Born and raised in Walnut Creek, California Billy started playing guitar at the age of 11. "We boarded horses and ponies on my parents property and of course we had chickens." At the age of 12 he started singing and performing with the school choir as well as playing guitar at his church with the 9am folk group. "He co-founded the rock band "The Field Mice " and quickly built up a following in San Francisco and Berkeley. In 1993 Billy moved to Los Angeles. His unique ability to change the style from song to song demonstrate his strong musicianship and his intent of keeping the interest of the listener!

Brian A. Hazen, MD

The second MD we know of, after Sharon Krecji...

Brian is (was?) at Inova Fairfax Hospital in Virginia.

Medical Education University of Rochester 1994
Internship Georgetown University Hospital Medicine 1995
Residency Georgetown University Hospital 1998
Fellowship Georgetown University Hosp. Medicine 1999-2000
Certification Internal Medicine 1998

More on the "GN" mystery...

Now I see a couple of references to the "GNers" on p. 164-165 of the yearbook:

"Jessica Morgan - I love to GET NAKED"

"Amy Doub Get Naked!"

and "TL: Aimers: Gners are awesome!"

So perhaps Amy or Jessica (or TL...Tracy Long?), or obviously Tina C. can provide some additional insight about this mystery....

Sanders Photo

Brett Sanders, along with Sam and Pogo. I think Pogo is on the right...

Friday, July 18, 2008

Kevin Reimer

Our 6th known Northgate Alum with a PhD (others being Amato, Scholz, Rascher, Mock, and Deutscher)...

A cognitive developmental psychologist, Kevin Scott Reimer serves as an associate professor of psychology at Azusa Pacific University and a research professor of cognitive developmental psychology in the Graduate School of Psychology at Fuller Theological Seminary. He is an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA) and currently acts as a parish associate at the Sierra Vista Presbyterian Church in Oakhurst, California. Dr. Reimer was graduated from the University of California at Davis, earned a M.Div. at Regent College in Vancouver, Canada, and took a Ph.D. in human development/family studies with highest honors in Fuller’s Graduate School of Psychology in 2001. He completed a post doctoral fellowship at the University of British Columbia during which he studied the moral personality—looking especially at the altruism of L’Arche assistants working with the developmentally disabled, and he also has held a John Templeton Oxford Seminars on Science and Christianity award for work at Oxford University where he conducted research on virtue in moral functioning with an emphasis on social cognition. After beginning his teaching career as an assistant professor of marriage and family studies at the Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary in Fresno, California, Dr. Reimer joined the Fuller psychology faculty in 2003 and was appointed to his current position at Azusa Pacific the next year. He has received research support from the United States Department of Justice, the Metanexus Institute as administrator of a grant from the John Templeton Foundation, the Fetzer Institute, the Institute for Research on Unlimited Love, and Azusa Pacific University. Guest editor of a special issue of the Journal of Psychology and Christianity, he has contributed a number of articles to academic journals and chapters to volumes of collected works. His first book (with Jack Balswick and Pamela King), The Reciprocating Self: Human Development in a Theological Perspective, was published by Intervarsity Press in 2005. He is currently working on a new book, entitled A Peaceable Therapeutic, for Brazos Press, as well as one on altruistic love in L’Arche communities.

Yvonne Papanek

Yvonne is (was?) working as a yoga instructor.

Yvonne has a B.F.A in Choreography/Dance from California Institute of the Arts (Cal Arts)and has over 15 years of experience in yoga and specialized dance & experimental movement practices. An Integral Yoga Therapist since 1995, She did residency studies at the Yogaville Ashram in Buckingham, VA.

Yvonne Papanek is an Integral Yoga Practitioner, a Yoga Therapist accredited in Dr.Dean Ornish's certification for Cardiac Yoga, Stress Reduction, and the reversal of Heart Disease. She teaches a mindful based class in Hatha Yoga and Experiential Exercises. She is also an Experimental Dance Artist with a BFA from California Institute of the Arts. She has over 15 years' experience in specialized movement practices addressing mind and body. Since 1993 she has been a member and workshop leader of Body Weather Laboratory, an international movement research forum. The organization seeks to encourage artist, students, and audiences to experience, explore and break preconceived boundaries of physical expression and to investigate the body’s relationship to the environment. The aim is to explore and develop consciousness of the body as an ever evolving landscape within a greater surrounding landscape. Yvonne has worked in Japan, France, San Francisco, and Mexico, and she lives and works in Santa Monica, CA. with a private practice in Yoga, Macrobiotic Cooking and Acupressure.

The Famous Photo

OK I'm not going to put the names on this post...(I don't want hate mail from angry Houston Episcopalians). And please, someone send in some other updates or photos so this doesn't stay at the top of the blog for too long! I may even delete it after a few days...or hours.

The other question is, how did this photo get into the yearbook? Weren't some of the "models" also on yearbook staff?:

[removed as promised...]

Jim Meehan

Jim is an accountant, and partner, at Price Waterhouse Coopers in San Francisco. He is also on the board of the East Bay Community Law Center.

Northgate Mystery #4: The GN Girls

Chris B. alludes to a new mystery: "I recall an underground movement of these young women who used to prowl the streets of Walnut Creek, allegedly dressed only in lingerie, seeking to assault the homes of their male classmates with toilet-paper. Weren't they called something like "G.N." for "Get Naked?" Heady times indeed. I barely remember a group of us somehow learning of one of their assaults, and intercepting them en flagrante. Perhaps this incident is yet another mystery of the class of '86? Anyone remember it?"

Now Tina C. confirms the rumors: "hmmm, are we ready for GN stories....GN was not born in our senior year...it was several years before that....."

And yes, Matt C. provides a photo, so we have visual confirmation. It appears to be Blair Stientjes and Mike Neville with a diminutive blonde hiding her face in shame...However, calling this "lingerie" is a bit of a stretch.

How did you "somehow learn of their assaults"? Was there a mole in the group? So many questions.

The Rappelling Photo

Matt C. sends this photo of NG Mystery #1. Note that this photo is not in the yearbook, but according to Matt "was the cover bleed image for the
last issue of The Sentinel for the 85/86 school year". John Engstrom on the left, Mark Schmidt on the right.

Brett Sanders

Dear Class of '86,

Hey everybody! Thanks to Jeff for the great website!

Having realized, even back at Foothill Junior High (say, was I the only one to buy and proudly wear one of those blue (purple?) Griffon windbreakers? Wait, I think maybe Seth Hansell had one, too) that what I do best is laze around during summer vacation (I am something of a prodigy at this), I have arranged my life since graduation so that I am assured of long nap-filled summers with no work. The rest of the year, I teach (with the enthusiasm of the well-rested) Math and Japanese at a Charter High School here in Beautiful, in an infernally hot kind of way, Bullhead City, Arizona.

I have been happily married for 15 years, having wed my beloved Cynthia in 1993 outdoors at the beautiful convention hall at San Francisco State U, with fellow '86ers Steve Scholz and Seth H. as my Best Men, before zooming off to Japan to teach English for two years. We came back with a couple of Japanese dogs, and got ready for the arrival of our son Sam, who was born in Phoenix in 1996. I landed a job teaching Social Studies and (of all things) supervising the Student Council in Kingman, AZ and have been in Mohave County ever since.

Sammy is a very cool kid who likes computers and baseball and his dog, Pogo. Lately, we have been practicing baseball a lot, and reading books together and getting ready for him to enter 7th grade (!) this year.

More soon from the Banks of the Mighty Colorado.

Happy fortieth birthdays to everybody!
Brett Sanders

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Chris B.'s Comment on Northgate Mysteries

Here's Chris Bowhay's comment on the post "Northgate Mysteries". Because the original is way down there, I thought I would post it here. But we definitely need more info on the lingerie women...
Gear Failure, indeed! Thanks, Matty! That's something worse than a wardrobe malfunction... 1. The rappelling mystery has been unravelled by the victim himself, so I don't think I need to comment further. Suffice it to say, near-death experiences are supposed to involve the spirit rising up, not the body plummeting down. 2. The mysterious car incident has also been mostly unravelled. In order to protect the guilty, I'll not say who asked us for the key that poor, unwitting Mr. Wood gave to John E. and me. (In truth, he didn't give it to us, but loaned a copy for a "late night" newspaper session, which we promptly took to the hardware store in Ygnacio Valley Road, carefully taping the "do not copy" imprint with masking tape marked "shed" and greasing it up with oil and dirt. We didn't know what purpose it might serve some day, but we knew that day would come.) The true perps behind the car plot approached us, somehow learning of our contraband. For several nights before the attempt, they carefully set off the school alarms, bringing our beloved, affable principal to the school in his bathrobe, training him to think that there was something wrong with the alarm system. This was in case they accidentally triggered the alarm on the night of the event. To avoid this, they used duct tape to cover the motion-trigger alarms installed in the doorframes. I was not present at the school that night; John and I had played our parts and had exited the stage. But the next morning was rather glorious.

Now that I work at a Church with a School, I remember this event when our Seniors pull their pranks. This year they managed to use an old-school block-and-tackle to hoist a 500-pound statue of St. Francis onto the tower overlooking the church entrance, dressing him in a Batman mask and cape so that he looked exactly like the mournful superhero looking down on his fragile, corrupt Gotham. It was pretty sweet.

3. The "Chippendale's" faux-ster was our greatest glory that would become our greatest shame. Here's the context: Long before the days of the Spice Girls and their commercialized use of market-driven "girl power," there was a generation of young women that were strong, confident, and unafraid of seeming sexy. At least, that's the way they seemed to me, who wandered the halls of our school in a constant state of pheremonal inebriation. I recall an underground movement of these young women who used to prowl the streets of Walnut Creek, allegedly dressed only in lingerie, seeking to assault the homes of their male classmates with toilet-paper. Weren't they called something like "G.N." for "Get Naked?" Heady times indeed. I barely remember a group of us somehow learning of one of their assaults, and intercepting them en flagrante. Perhaps this incident is yet another mystery of the class of '86? Anyone remember it?

Anyway, raised in a time when Alan Alda was an icon of sensitive masculinity, many young men in the class of '86 felt powerless when beholding the goddesses before us. (Anyone remember Jake Barnes from The Sun Also Rises?) For some, the nadir of our humiliation was when certain of these young women placed a chippendale's poster on the interior walls of that weird, circular air-freshener shaped room just outside the cafeteria which served as the "student government" room, as if it were their private locker room in which we were ignorable eunuchs. Enough was enough. Somehow, some of us thought we should reclaim our dignity and counter-act that pathetic poster with one of our own. So, with Mr. Schwerin's help, and with Charlotte Ng liberally applying water to our hairless chests (hmm-maybe it was Charlotte's idea), we did a photo shoot. We presented the poster at a student council meeting, and I'll never know if the cries from those present were of shock, delight, or horror. From that day forward, none of us could ever run for political office, for fear that photo would be dredged up and used against us.

Thus shame and glory are mingled together, transfixed in a moment of black-and-white time, adorned with strippers' bow ties.

Lisa Wolters-Broder Update

Jeff- Rebecca Deutscher sent me the link to your blog a few weeks ago, and I've been meaning to send you something... In the meantime, someone in our Marketing dept. at work (hi Melanie!), who apparently googles our company name to see what's being said about us in the news, e-mailed me yesterday with the link to ME on your blog. First I had to ask her, uhhh, why are you googling me? (I mean, I know companies "watch" their employees, but... seriously??) Then she explained that she routinely googles the company, and thus found ME. Oh! So I thought I'd flesh out your google-inspired info.!

I graduated from UC Davis in 1990 with degrees in both English and Spanish. Lived and worked around Sacramento for a few years after that, and then moved back to the Bay Area and started working in the Berkeley area. Yep, I worked for McGraw-Hill's computer book division for a few years. (My favorite editing project was "Build Your Own Combat Robot" -- I got free tickets to BattleBots! Nerdvana!) I met my husband (a graduate of Ygnacio Valley HS) through Barbara Aster, and we got married in 1997. Eventually we traded one creek for another and moved to Cave Creek, Arizona. We have two horses in our backyard and three cats in the house. It's a dry heat. I've worked in publishing since college, as a proofreader, writer, project manager and editor. Right now I'm my company's Senior Copy Editor-slash-Slave to the Corporate Machine (hi Melanie!). For all you financial/Wall Street nerds, I know what the PMI is before most everyone else in the country does. And, yes, I believe I'd be required to kill you if I told you (right, Melanie?)... So I guess I'm still part cowgirl, part word nerd/sci-fi geek. Shocking, I know... My dad passed away in 1991, and my mom passed away in 2002, but we still visit the Concord/Walnut Creek area several times a year. For those who remember my mom's bright yellow Ford Pinto station wagon (with the faux wood panel sides--the '70s were so classy) -- which she drove me to Castle Rock in, I drove in high school, AND I got to take to college (lucky me) -- it's actually alive and well, and living in Georgia with a friend of ours who wanted a Ford Pinto station wagon. I guess it's "retro" now, LOL. :-)


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Tim Kruger

Tim is the athletic director at Las Lomas High School in Walnut Creek.

Serena Hong

Serena went to undergrad at Cal Berkeley (another one!) and law school at Hastings in S.F. She was admitted to the CA bar in 1993. She works in S.F. at the SSA Office of Hearings & Appeals

Dana (Hinkle) Finegold

Dana married Jamie Finegold ('87) and together run Tart, a clothing company. They have 4 kids.

"There is an obvious passion in Jamie and Dana Finegold. They want to create something that makes a woman feel empowered, sexy, and thrilled to be who she is. Perhaps putting all they have into this line is what drives their passion. A family man as much as he is a business man, Jamie compared his growing business to his growing daughter, who’s first time at a Tart runway show was this season. “She was just born when we started our company, so seeing her now ... you know, she was my inspiration in the morning, like, ‘Get up and sell, go make something happen!’ But seeing her here now and getting into it is really cool,” said Jamie."

Brad Hall

Brad is the President/CEO at EntertainmentCareers.Net, Inc., a company in Los Angeles that helps people find jobs in the entertainment business.

Amy (Doub) Casey

Amy is a bilingual educator in Walnut Creek, and teaches Spanish For Kids.
Amy Casey grew up in Walnut Creek, CA, and graduated from Northgate High School and the University of California, Santa Barbara. She has been teaching and tutoring enrichment and conversational Spanish since 2001 and has worked on several translations including the children's book: Play Hopscotch on Saturn’s Rings.

Her abuelita (grandma) is from El Salvador and she grew up speaking some Spanish with her extended family. She had the opportunity to spend a high school summer studying Spanish in Valencia, Spain and was hooked on the language, culture and travel. During college she spent a year studying Spanish and economics at the University of Madrid, Spain. She traveled extensively throughout Spain and has returned on several occasions, most recently in 2007 to lead a group of students and their families on a tour of the Granada region.

Amy Casey's Spanish classes are designed to teach students of all ages including children as young as 2 years of age. She tailors the classes to the students' age and experience and uses diverse teaching techniques to enhance their learning. Whether she is building a base of phonemic awareness and a familiarity with basic vocabulary through songs, games and play or supplementing high-school honor's classes with writing, conversation, students will benefit from Amy Casey's thoughtful, enthusiastic, and knowledgeable tutoring.

"Studies show that there is a `window of opportunity' for optimal brain enhancement," says Amy Casey, who runs Walnut Creek's Spanish for Kids program. "And that is usually in the preschool ages." She addsthat auditory development in people usually peaks by age 12 -- right about the time many American kidsare just beginning to study a foreign language."

Lisa Dorman-Ran

Lisa Dorman-Ran is a swim coach at Twin Valley Aquatics in Sonoma. Here is her bio:

Born and raised in Walnut Creek, California I started swimming at the age of 6 with the now Walnut Creek Aquabears. What started as a fun activity to keep me safe in the family pool later turned into my passion. I was a decent age group swimmer but didn’t really excel until the age of 12 when I qualified for the Junior National Championships. At this time I really began to see how beneficial swimming was for me as a competitor in and out of the pool.

At 16 and a junior at Northgate High school, I made a move to another local team, Concord Pleasant Hill to train with Mitch Ivey. It is here that I made my mark in the swimming world, as a four time U.S. National Champion, member of several U.S. National teams, Pan Pacific champion, 1986 World Championship finalist, and consistently ranked among the top 25 in the world from 1982 until 1990.

With success in the pool I was able to receive a full scholarship to the University of Southern California. While at USC I was a four time All American, Senior Student Athlete of the year, Spirit Award winner, Pac-Ten medal winner and Team Captain. Most importantly, I met my husband Erik and achieved a BS in General Studies, focusing on early childhood education. In between swimming and school I was given the opportunity during the summers to coach with Swim America in Mission Viejo and several swim camps in Connecticut.

Upon graduation I returned to the Bay Area where I worked as a corporate trainer and was head coach of the Miramonte Gators a summer recreational team. With a team of over 250 kids we were able to become league champions two years in a row and place 2nd at the County Championships. Since my two years with the Gators I have worked with clubs in South Dakota and a brief stint with Deanza Cupertino Aquatics before my husband and I relocated to Den Haag, Holland.

We returned to the United States in November 2002 and welcomed our son Tommy into the world in February of 2003. I am very pleased that I have been able to stay home with him and enjoy all that motherhood entails. I am so excited to have the opportunity to work with Twin Valley Aquatics and look forward to meeting each of you. Together we can make this a positive experience for everyone involved.

Jim Donaldson

Jim Donaldson works for the accounting firm of Frank, Rimerman & Co. in Palo Alto.

Jim has 15 years of tax consulting experience serving corporations, partnerships, individuals and S-corporations. He is the partner in charge of the Firm’s corporate tax department. Jim has primarily focused on serving technology companies - from development stage to SEC registrants – but has also worked with manufacturing, distribution, service and other businesses. Jim has been involved in assisting clients with issues involving US federal and state income tax, sales tax, property tax, payroll tax, etc. Jim heads up the firm’s FAS 109 practice, providing tax provision calculations to public and private companies. He also has experience in managing the income tax aspects of multinational corporations. Jim came to the firm after spending 13 years with Deloitte. Jim has a degree in Business Economics from the University of California at Santa Barbara.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Peter Corsa

Peter went to UCSB, later obtaining an MBA at St. Mary's. He worked at Old Navy and the Gap, and is currently a Vice President of Retail at Stuart Weitzman, which I think is a shoe retailer in the Bay Area.

Lisa Wolters-Broder

Lisa is (was?-2004...) an editor for McGraw-Hill, is (was?) working as an editor for a journal published by the Institute of Supply Management, and is a member of the Arizona Dressage Association, which has something to do with horse competitions.

Senior Trip to Hawaii, 1986

There was a senior trip to Hawaii? Guess I missed it. I'm sure there are some stories...until they come out, you can see these photos, again from Nici.

Tiffany Worboy, Mike Bonetti, Nici Grace

Jim Meehan, Jon O'Conner, Jim Clark

Our first beers! Mike Borke, Brad Giacobazzi, Jim McManus, Brian Callahan

Devo! 1986

Larry McDonough, Reid Stevens, Mike Neville, and Rodney Centeno...Great outfits! What was the story behind this one?
And is that Billy Schaub on stage wearing a tie?

1986 rally on the back stage

Some more pictures from Nici. I have vague memories of this rally outside, but can't remember the occasion. It was mainly an airband type deal, right? Or am I thinking of something else. Was this the one where Jamie Feingold and friends did "Blue Moon" complete with the blue speedo mooning? Please elaborate in comments.

These photos show various football players, I think Mannie, Radakovich, Prophet....ID others in comments. Who is the sax player?

Some photos from Nici: 1986

Nici (Grace) Kammerer sent these photos along. Many thanks for the snapshots of good times and mid '80's fashion!

Pyramid at the Senior Party at Turtle Rock on Mt. Diablo. What is confusing to me is that not only is this a different picture than the one in the yearbook, it has different people. I see Narissa is in both pyramids. Others identifiable here include Amy Doub, Karen Zawadzki, Debbie Brear, Tiffany Worboy...ID others in comments.

Karen Niess, Jessica Morgan, Tim Kruger, Renee Foust at the Heather Farms picnic

Neda Mansourian, Tiffany Worboy, Nici Grace

Farewell Brunch to Russia for Kris Babb – Mike Neville, Kris Babb, Leslie Bell, Sharon Holmes (?), Reid Stevens, MaryKay Nielsen, Lisa Bien, Dana Hinkle

Graduation: Nici with Tiffany and Karen Zawadzki

Monday, July 14, 2008

Matt Burris

Hey everybody! Can't tell you how much fun this has been. Kudos to my friend Mr. Amato....he gave me some credit for inspiring this by an email I directed at him about six years ago after I was laid up from a surfing injury and got so bored I started googling old friends names....the rest is revisionist history to be sure.

I am very impressed by the amount of doctors, priests, teachers, super moms, tech. pros and various criminal justice types we represent...and also how much we have spread ourselves across the country,. Jere I was thinking a move to Santa Cruz was a big deal.

What have I been doing? Well after finally giving up on the academic career after about 6 years at DVC and Cabrillo combined, and realizing I would never get my act together enough to go to SJ State or UCSC, I went to work in restaurants full tilt.

I started at the bottom....prepping, bussing...went up to line cook, waited tables, and then moved up to bar tending, lots of bar tending (if you or yours have ever passed through Santa Cruz there is a good chance I may have served you a Cosmo or a Clausthaler).

From there I talked my way into kitchen management, and with the help of a few more capatilistic friends that I made along the way, full fledged restaurant entrepreneurship . What fun. Little did we perceive that there weren't enough sports couch potatoes in Santa Cruz to make a runaway success of a 'sports bar and grille'...'Boba tea and crepe cafe' was another failed venture that we won't talk about. At least I wasn't talked into a "Cereality" franchise. Other than those penitent details, I've been living a rather Peter Pan type of Santa Cruz existence, which is easy to do here in Santa Cruz. Lots of surfing and other things that I might not want Michelle Bockstein to know about. :) :)

Workstyle and lifestyle haven't been so conducive to marriage or fatherhood, though there were a couple of close calls. A bit ironic afterall, considering that I spent my entire Jr. and Sr. years (the McLovin years) 'married' to Mariana Boctor, ...BTW, if anyone knows anything about her, Darren Whittaker, Greg Dockus, or Greg Shaw please email Jeff or me at maattyy68 AT yahoo.com.

All of you guys look GREAT in these photos... A few I have to mention though if you'll indulge....Deb Devoe, Tina C, and Sathvik K, great work, great bios! Rod C lookin' handsome! Lora D, you look like a Broadway star, of course you always did ! Lisa D, beautiful dress and you look the picture of health! Dave D and Charlotte J, very chic! Mr. Hazen, did you or did you not play the janitor on "Scrubs"? Coulda swore that was you,.....

Mr. Sela, "my name is Julius Thadder Springer, though all my friends call me JT"(inside joke), Larry McD, Go Barracudas! Lookin sharp! Yvonne P, last time I saw you was outside a Grateful Dead show in Oakland, remember?

Gary McV and Camp sharing a house? Oh boy. Gary, I think I might know a few of those Acalanes '88 girls...BEAN!!!! (Jon Hastings is rumored to live down here on the central coast...I've run into Lara Moran once or twice in Soquel....apparently J.Noonan was a bananaslug AND a Bronco, what a combo!!)

Scot Kobashigawa, Greg Bertoldo, and Dave Devoe working at Scwab? One of my BFF's is/was there....Tony Fiero? Actually, I think he telecommutes from Chico these days anyway...

and lastly.....Chris Bowhay...hey man...The Police and Elvis Costello? We were there before we had drivers licenses man! Good thing you flew your freak flag when you had your chance, and I aint just talking about your beautiful hair!

Bye folks, I'm out....be sure to tip your waitresses!!"

Friday, July 11, 2008

Tina (Buschiazzo) Kane

Tina, according to this 2005 article, is (was?) the"Gatekeeper" for Los Angeles Philharmonic Music Director and conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen.

History: Kane started working in the Phil's artist department in 1995. She met Salonen then, and often drove him around town to meetings, rehearsals and concerts. In 2000, Salonen offered her a job as his personal assistant. "It took me all of a second to say yes," Kane said.

A Day in the Life: If Salonen is in town, Kane's with him - though her toddler daughter Madison means she attends fewer nighttime concerts. Kane keeps his schedule, screens calls and shadows him as he navigates appointments. When he travels, Kane works from home. Kane says Salonen is low maintenance. "Especially when he gets to Europe, he's so un-artist-like, you'd be surprised. He doesn't need anybody over there."

Best Part of the Job: "When I sit down and watch him conduct, I know that all he has to worry about is walking onstage and conducting. All the stuff going on behind the scenes, I've taken care of it. He can do what he's supposed to be doing and focus on his art."

Pet Peeve: "I get phone calls and letters from people who tell me, 'I'd like time with Esa-Pekka, I'm a very close friend.' Then they say or spell his name wrong. It makes me laugh. Yeah, sure you're a friend."

Preferred Gift: "Me keeping my job is appreciation enough. He's been so supportive of me with Madison, that's enough. When she comes in with me, she sits in his dressing room, plays his piano and gives him coffee. It's adorable."

Michele (Bockstein) Van Gelderen

Michele went to Law School at Cal and is a Deputy Attorney General for the California Department of Justice in Los Angeles.

Phil Bennett

Phil Bennett plays keyboards for the band Starship. Another Northgate alum, Mark Abrahamian ('85?) is the guitar player in the band. Great quote from Mark: 'The turning point in Mark's life came in the Seventh Grade when he heard Edward Van Halen's "Eruption". "I went home and didn't leave my room until the Ninth Grade."'

Keyboardist/Pianist Phillip Bennett is an exciting and entertaining performer and player who blends a mixture of music styles and professional talent. His extensive knowledge of MIDI , sampling, computers and synthesis allows him to create from a huge palate of sound technology, while his musical experience and wide versatility allow him to shine as both a performer and a musician

For nine years He has been performing and arranging all keyboards with Starship (formally [I think they meant "formerly" -ed.] Jefferson Starship). Starship, featuring the incomparable singer Mickey Thomas, Starship performs over one hundred shows a year nationally and internationally. “Starship is a group well known for their keyboard and synthesizer arrangements.” Phil says, “With Starship I get to combine both sound design and performance in everything I do.”

Coming from a large family, Phil was raised with a love for all types of music and started playing multiple instruments at an early age, with an intense desire to emulate and absorb the many different artists and music styles that he was surrounded by in the San Francisco Bay Area. He focused on the piano after discovering its continued availability next to a record player/radio in the living room, and as a result, discovered jazz and classical music recordings, Jimi Hendrix and National Public Radio.

As a teenager with a fake I.D., he performed in around the San Francisco Bay Area where he was able to gain extensive experience working with established bands and players, and as a result In his early 20's he joined up and collaborated with the late Bay Area guitarist Erik Torjesen. Erik was well known for his instrumental rock-jazz guitar sound that was made quite popular in the early 1990's. Phillip gained the attention of renowned Testament guitarist and Guitar Player columnist Alex Skolnick, who for three years he recorded and toured with. It was an additional extraordinary experience that enhanced Phil's playing style by allowing him to incorporate the chops and musicality needed for Instrumental and progressive music.

Phil's technical expertise allows him to comfortably perform on all the various types of keyboard instruments, from his arsenal of modern electronica to his collection of vintage electric pianos and Hammond organs. Phil explained, “There's really no match for the sounds you get from those classic instruments, of course they are extremely hard to move, let alone transport or fly”. His technical expertise with MIDI and Computers allows him to bridge the cap between both platforms and to utilize digital recording, software and hardware as an integral part of his studio and playing.


This seems like an appropriate time for the following: I prefer to post info from people that they send me directly. However, if there is stuff on the web that is publicly available, I'm going to use it if I have reasonable evidence that it is the correct person. I do not guarantee that this information is up to date, or that I have independently verified the facts of an article or web source. If there is incorrect info about yourself or others, by all means let me know by email or in comments. I reserve the right to edit comments that I think are more suited to private emails between individuals, and I will not give out email addresses or other contact info without permission. I am enjoying getting this site rolling along, but I probably don't have time to act as a go between for everyone that wants to contact someone else from the class. I'm sure I will have even less time once classes start up in late August. Your best bet for contacting someone is probably giving them your email in comments.

So if you want your email out there, be sure to indicate that in your post (i am substituting AT for @ in an attempt to ward off spam, not sure how effective that is). I am also keeping an updated list of current emails and other contact info for future reunions. Do I hear 25 years? 30?

Your intrepid moderator,
Dr. Jeff

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Kristen Babb-Sprague

Maybe I was the only person who didn't know this, but Kristen Babb-Sprague has had quite the illustrious athletic career. And that DOES look like a "USA" jacket she is wearing in the pool with Tom Thorup and Reid Stevens in that yearbook picture from the "Senior Party at Turtle Rock". So forgive me if this is old news to everyone, but...

Kristen was the 1989 National Champion in synchronized swimming, and a gold medalist at the 1992 Olympics. She was a member of the Walnut Creek Aquanuts in the mid '90s. She is married to Ed Sprague, a former major league baseball player who is now the Head Coach of the baseball team at UOP in Stockton. As of 2001, according to this article they had 3 children. She even has her own Wikipedia article.

Doug Alessio

In 2006, Doug was the Business Services Manager for the City of Brentwood.

Adam Miles

As of a few years ago, Adam Miles (one of the six involved in the famous calendar picture, see Northgate Mysteries and yearbook p. 41) was a stockbroker and living in Clayton. He may have moved to Utah in the last few years.

Paul Hohlt

Probably those at the reunion have more info on Paul Hohlt than I do, but I did see this great quote from him in the Daily Californinan about a march in Berkeley:

Eight local activists displayed their lighter sides yesterday, marching in the nude down Telegraph Avenue to express their distaste for the current presidential administration. The 13th annual "Nude and Breast Freedom Parade," organized by the X-plicit Players of Berkeley, marched under the theme "Get Your Bush Out to Get Bush Out."

No, Paul wasn't a marcher, but he was interviewed while working at a bookstore:

At one point, the demonstrators passed through a crowded Anne's Kitchen and Shakespeare and Company Books.

Paul Hohlt, who was manning Shakespeare's register at the time, said he was not bothered by the visitors.

"If you can't do it in Berkeley, where can you do it?" Hohlt said.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

50 People

Thanks to Tiffany, we now have blog entries for 50 of our classmates. Of course, that is still less than 15% of the Senior Class. It would be nice to hear from some of the others that were at the Reunion....people that I have seen in the photos that were sent in. Where's Rodney Centeno? Jim Meehan? Jessica Morgan? Maybe I'll start making up fictional biographies with the idea that it will induce an email with the correct info!

Many thanks to all of our first 50 respondents and stay tuned for new updates as they come in.

Tiffany Worboy

Hi, Jeff –
First off, you deserve huge thanks for pulling this “virtual reunion” site together. I don’t know where you find the time, between your professorial duties and life at home with a newborn (congratulations!!) [Summer break and baby naps!" -ed.]– but I’m grateful for your efforts to keep us all connected.

I’m writing this mini-bio at work, so I guess I’ll start with that aspect of my life. I work in the Dean’s Office of Emory College (part of Emory University in Atlanta, GA) doing everything from writing reports to fundraising. I’ve been doing this kind of work since I began my graduate training here (so, for a long time) and am still slowly plugging away on a PhD in Women’s Studies. (For my dissertation, I spent 9 months in an infertility clinic, conducting a sort of “clinical ethnography” and talking to women about their experiences of IVF.) Truth be told, I find my paid work more engaging than the insular work of writing a dissertation, but I’m hopeful that I’ll be finished with the degree within a year.

While my studies are good, and work is better…easily the best part of my life is my family. My long-term boyfriend morphed into a great life partner (my husband, Christian) and-- in recent years -- we had two really sweet, beautiful little boys, Cole (4.5 yrs) and Cooper (2.5 yrs). Our lives have become increasingly busy with playdates, t-ball games, and swim lessons (like many families with young kids) and we love the slightly chaotic pace by which we live. My husband is from Quebec, so we take regular trips to Canada and enjoy hosting family in our “new” (but really very old) home in Atlanta.

How did I get to Atlanta? Well, after high school, I spent one year in Ohio -- but I really missed my friends in Walnut Creek and returned a year later. I owe infinite gratitude to Claire Waltos (who was a secretary par excellence at Northgate) for taking me in and letting me live with her for a year – and many summers to follow. Thanks to her help, I was able to transfer to San Diego State – and eventually graduated in 1991 with a dual B.A. in Psychology and Women’s Studies.

I spent the next 6 years working in the publishing field and soaking up life in San Diego. It was a good way to spend a chunk of my 20s, although I was ready to get back to school. Originally, I returned to SDSU for a M.A. in Women’s Studies in the hope that I could use the degree to pursue an editorial career. Ultimately, I did earn the M.A. -- but during the process, my mom’s health got increasingly worse and eventually she passed away. The experience of taking care of her during her final illness is what actually prompted me to apply to PhD programs, as I was reminded how short our time here can be. Somewhat on a whim, I applied to Emory’s doctoral program in 1999 and have happily stayed ever since.

At the risk of sounding too idealistic, the last decade here in Atlanta has been incredibly joyful. It’s hard *not* be grateful when I basically get paid to study really interesting stuff – and then come home to a wonderful little family. I’m also lucky to have maintained a number of friendships from Northgate, and regularly hear from Chris Gillis, Neda Mansourian, Nici Grace, and Libby Walker – and have touched base more recently with Bart Hummer and Debbie Brear. (Anyone know where Cindy Sildorff is?)

I have set your blog as one of my “favorites,” Jeff – so I hope lots of folks continue to post their updates. It’s so nice to see how everyone is doing and what paths they chose to pursue. High school was a particularly poignant time for me, and I look at back at those years fondly. And for the record: I’m struck by how incredibly great everyone looks – 20+ years later! You all are a good looking bunch. ☺ I “second” John Engstrom’s suggestion for a 30th reunion – I’ll definitely make that one!

In case anyone finds themselves in Atlanta, or just wants to drop me a line, here’s my contact info: tworboy AT hotmail.com. Thanks again for organizing this online community, Jeff. Take care and enjoy every second you get with your beautiful baby!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Mollee (Murphy) Johnston

Thanks to an anonymous tip, we learned that Mollee (Murphy) Johnston is a Life Coach with a business called Open Ground Life Coaching.

Professional Experience and Education:

Bachelors degree in Industrial Psychology, St Mary's College
Certified Professional Co-Active Coach, CPCC from the Coaches Training Institute
Career in Advertising Sales

Monday, July 7, 2008

Dan Rascher

Dan is the latest to have a baby this year! Last week. That makes at least four of us (along with Amato, Taguba, Scholz) with babies born in '08. I guess they will be the class of 2026??? We'll only be 58 then.

Dan writes:

My wife, Heather, and I live in Oakland (near Bill Rogers of '86) with our son Daniel Aidan (who's just over 2 and we call him "Aidan") and our new son Lucas Gardiner, who was born on June 27, 2008. I've attached pictures. Heather and I have been together for 10 years (married since Oct. 2001). We met at a consulting firm. Now, we run our own firm while I teach at U. of San Francisco.

Other '86ers I see are Scot Kobashigawa, Chris Gillis, Jim Meehan, Dan Moore, Mitch Hunter, Mike Borke, Jim Donaldson, Jimmy McManus, and Rudy Oest. We had a softball team until this year (beginning in 1990, when Jeff Ondeck started it...he's in Dallas now with wife and kids).

Daniel A. Rascher, Ph.D., President of Sports Economics

Daniel Rascher teaches and publishes research on sports business topics, and consults to the sports industry. He specializes in economics and finance and more specifically in industrial organization, antitrust, M&As, valuation, economic impact, market readiness, feasibility research, marketing research, damage analysis, strategy, and labor issues in the sports industry. Dr. Rascher founded SportsEconomics to enable sports enterprises to capitalize on the sports industry's transition from hobby status to multi-billion dollar industry. As Founder and President of SportsEconomics, LLC, Managing Partner at OSKR, LLC, and former Principal at LECG, LLC, his clients have included companies involved in the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, NASCAR, MLS, PGA, NCAA, minor league baseball, NHRA, AHL, Formula One racing, Champ Car racing, Premier League Football (soccer), professional cycling, media companies, sports commissions, local and state government, B2B enterprises, and IHRSA.

Dr. Rascher received his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of California at Berkeley. He is Director of Academic Programs and Associate Professor for the Sport Management Program at the University of San Francisco (USF), where he also teaches courses in sports economics and finance and sports business research methods. Prior to joining USF, Dr. Rascher was an Assistant Professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He has authored articles for academic and professional journals and book chapters in the sport management and economics fields, and has been interviewed hundreds of times by the media for his opinion on various aspects of the business of sports. He has testified as an expert witness in State Court and in a number of arbitration proceedings, and provided public testimony numerous times to local and state governments. Dr. Rascher serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Sport Management, Sport Management Review, International Journal of Sport Finance, and the Journal of the Quantitative Analysis of Sports.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Katrina Menzigian

Katrina Menzigian, Vice President, FAO and PO Research at Everest Research Institute, is (was?) a market analysis and consulting professional. She was also a VP at BPO Services, a holding company in the Boston area.

Alex Kalmanson

Alex is (was?) at Desma Tech, Inc., a computer products company. Here is a photo of him in January 2008 at the CES conference showing him as the Business Develpment Director of a company that created the Mova Globe, a self-rotating $500 globe of the Earth. Cool!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Kerry O'Boyle

Kerry O'Boyle wrote in, and tells us:
"The basics are that I've been married and living in Chicago since 1999 when I left the Navy. Two boys (5 1/2 and almost 3). Two cats (by marriage). House. yard. yawn".

Debbie DeVoe-SF Chronicle Article

Former NG English teacher Dick Friss sent this to Clint Stewart (who has now been located in Salt Lake City), and Clint forwarded it to me. It is an opinion page article by Debbie DeVoe that appeared in the SF Chronicle today. Friss says: "Check out the writer! Last I knew she was living/working in Japan. Now in Nairobi, Kenya? If any of you know give her my best regards."

Act now to save the hungry
Debbie DeVoe
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
I've looked hunger in the face - or to be more exact, in the faces of hundreds of Ethiopian children. Due to consecutive failure of rains, farmers in many pockets of southern and eastern Ethiopia have no crop to harvest. Combined with a spiraling rise in food prices, thousands of families are now left with nothing to eat.

The Ethiopian government is taking action to address the impact of this year's drought by distributing emergency food rations and setting up feeding sites for malnourished children. But more help is urgently needed.

At one site I visited, 200 children were receiving therapeutic milk and treatment. In tents thrown up on church grounds, family members cradled their sick children who lay unmoving in their embrace. One mother pulled up the shirt of her young daughter to show me her matchstick-thin arms and jutting ribs. Another grandfather lovingly supported the back of his grandson's head as he fed the child sips of milk from a plastic syringe. The boy, who looked about 5, simply didn't have the energy to take in food any other way.

Through feedings every three hours, these children are incrementally regaining their health. Staff from Doctors Without Borders is on site to care for the most severely malnourished. Missionaries of Charity sisters are also preparing meals for the children's caregivers and distributing weekly rations to struggling families who so far have been able to stave off malnutrition. Each week though, the number of people arriving at this site and dozens of others like it continue to grow.

Many of the pockets most affected by drought this year are within some of Ethiopia's most productive agricultural regions. These poor farm families are made up of hard-working people who are usually able to grow enough food to meet their needs. Fighting to overcome considerable obstacles each season, sometimes they lose the battle.

In recent years, the Ethiopian government has made considerable progress increasing the country's agricultural capacity and assisting those most at risk of not having sufficient food. A program started in January 2005 coordinates the efforts of donor agencies and partners to provide supplemental food to 8 million of the neediest people. The hope is that with a few years of support, these families will be able to build sufficient household assets and food stores to weather future crises without tragic results.

This year, however, Ethiopia is shouldering the heavy burdens of another drought as food and fuel prices rise. The global food crisis is weighing other countries down as well, driving the need for massive food assistance worldwide in the short term, near term and long term.

Late Thursday evening, the U.S. Senate passed a supplemental appropriations bill that provides almost $1.9 billion in emergency food assistance and cash to respond to the hunger crisis worldwide. This amount is very generous, but longer term funding is also needed to increase overall agricultural production.

The U.S. government now must ensure that this emergency aid arrives where it is needed as quickly as possible. Any delay could have horrific consequences.

Debbie DeVoe, a former San Francisco resident who grew up in Walnut Creek, now serves as Catholic Relief Services' regional information officer for East Africa based in Nairobi, Kenya.


This article appeared on page B - 9 of the San Francisco Chronicle

Eliana Ben-Zeev

Designer Eliana Ben-Zeev displays one of her designs at the Le Meridian Hotel on February 23, 2004 at Beverly Hills Red Carpet Oscar suites, in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/ Getty Images)

Eliana has worked as a costume designer for the film "Spark" (1998) starring Terrence Howard and is a wedding dress designer. According to this article, she is based in L.A. Her website does not have any info on it, so I'm not sure if she is still in this line of work.

Eliana Ben-Zeev inspired by Hollywood of the past

By Sharon Mosley
Copley News Service

DESIGN DIVA -- Designer Eliana Ben-Zeev creates a look of sultry romance in “Marlene,” a bias crepe satin-charmeuse gown inspired by Hollywood’s golden age. CNS Photo courtesy of Eliana Ben-Zeev.
Whether she’s designing for divas on the opera stage, actresses parading down the red carpet or brides walking down the aisle, Los-Angeles based designer Eliana Ben-Zeev finds inspiration for her unique dresses in her artistic background.

“I love the feeling that I’ve interpreted an idea -- be it from a piece of art, a song or even a random object or pattern -- and turned it into something that others feel beautiful in,” she says.

Ben-Zeev, who launched her couture eveningwear and bridal collection in 2002 to “fill a void in the market with dresses that were different but still timeless and beautiful,” grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. She attended Clark University near Boston, where she received a bachelor’s in business management, and later graduated from The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles.

Before starting her own design house, Ben-Zeev worked in costume design, construction and styling in opera, theatre, film and television. Her unique bridal gowns reflect her passion for historic stage design -- especially “Old Hollywood” that evokes a modern elegance when she combines the glamour of the past and then adds her own artistic expression developed from years of experience. (She also has a new cocktail-dress collection for the mother-of-the-bride.)

“Old Hollywood is a time remembered with style and glamour, and it is really impacting the bridal industry,” says Ben-Zeev, who has consistently worked with various historical time periods to make her dresses distinctive.

“I bring together various past eras with a contemporary twist,” she says. “That’s my concept overall.”

A gown in her spring collection, “Irene” is influenced by a combination of the 1880s and 1950s Hollywood, while another bias crepe satin-charmeuse dress, “Marlene,” is influenced by the 1930s.

Ben-Zeev’s passion for historical detail is expressed in her sophisticated gowns that are enhanced with unusual detailing.

“For example, I use beads, Swarkovski crystals, fresh-water pearls, semiprecious gems all in a unique way,” she says. “I implement them into the gown more as jewelry than embroidery accents.”

On several gowns in her current collection, necklacelike strands of crystals and pearls become part of the dress. Gowns retail for $2,000 and up; cocktail dresses begin at $800.

Color does play an important role in Ben-Zeev’s design work. After all, historically, many brides have had a colorful past.

“I love using a hint of color as an accent to bring a gown to life,” she says, “and I’m glad that American brides are beginning to explore the beauty of color.”

John Barry

Hey Jeff,

I stumbled upon your blog the other day – what a great idea & very cool that so many people have found it already. I have been out of touch with just about everyone from NG over the last twenty (two!!) years, but I was able to make it to the 20th reunion in '06 – at first I hadn't intended to go, but I was inspired by my wife's 20-year reunion a few months before, and just couldn't resist ours! It turned out to be an incredibly fun time – I can't wait until the next one! It was interesting seeing so many people I hadn't seen in YEARS and seeing how everyone had aged since high school. Amazingly well, I might add – I have heard all the reunion horror stories, but in our class everyone looked pretty fabulous! (just wait till the 50th!!) I ended up hanging out with some really cool people & had a great time, and got a chance to spend some time & get to know some of our alums I didn't even know in high school. (I think some of them didn't even go to NG but just crashed the party, but they were a blast to hang out with anyhow!!). I did not take many pictures at the reunion - wish I had taken more, but I do have a few to share. Attached is a shot of myself and Kerry Breen at the party – it was a blast seeing her again, and to also hang out with Sue Lockyer, who I didn't even really know in high school. I also have a couple of pics of the crowd waiting for the group photo that never came out! (At least we now have a shot of the back of everyone's head!). It was hilarious seeing the old pic you posted of Sue's kitchen with John Weisel & Rich Jursich sportin the flannel shirts. How it brought me back again! It must have been summertime or Weisel probably would have had his Derby jacket on as well!

After high school, I went to college at Saint Mary's over in Moraga, living in the dorms & spending most of my time partying & going to Dead Shows, occasionally showing up in class. My college girlfriend Nancy & I ended up moving to Los Angeles and getting married in the summer of 1991, where we have lived for the last 17 years. We adopted a beautiful baby girl named Monica in 1991, who is now 10 (going on 25!!) and will be in the 5th grade next year. My wife Nancy was the recipient of a Kidney-Pancreas transplant in 2001, a fairly uncommon procedure at the time, which effectively cured her of her juvenile diabetes and she has not had to take an insulin shot in over seven years, when it used to be several times a day. Although her transplanted kidney failed in 2006 & she is currently on dialysis & hoping for another transplant, the pancreas is still going strong. Her illness has been tough at times, but also helps us appreciate the time we have together & make the most of every day we have. Life is too short for all of us... For most of the 90's, I worked in the computer industry, both at a small computer & audio/video rental company in Burbank, as well as spending several years in the IT department at Hanna-Barbera Cartoons, which was pretty cool & quite an experience. After my daughter was born, I decided to get a real job (ahem) and went to work for a commercial escrow company in downtown LA (www.comescrow.com) where I have been for the last 10 years (time flies when you're having fun!!), where I work as an escrow officer & specialize in 1031 exchanges. I spend most of my time these days hanging out at home and enjoying life in what little free time I seem to have these days! Attached is another picture of myself, my wife Nancy & daughter Monica taken a few years ago in Manhattan Beach.

Excellent idea again, Jeff thanks for putting this together – what a great way for people to keep up with each other & be able to post comments & stuff! Hopefully it will get even more to the next reunion & we can all party till dawn... (or at our age until about 10:30 or so..)

Anyone feel free to email me at johnnyrocberry AT gmail.com

Hope everyone is doing well - happy 40's!!

John Barry

Group shot, with Kristin Hicks getting excited

Kerry Breen and John Barry