Medicine & Social Change
Over the past 30 years, perhaps no other woman has consistently impacted
the lives of so many Marin County children as Evelyn Callas.
It has been said of her, "She is professional, caring, warm and
understanding, unpretentious, low-key and devoted to her young patients.
She does it all, from fixing the pediatric department's broken toys,
to hugging a scared child, to giving clear instructions to worried
Dr. Callas's advocacy on behalf of children
has resulted in legislative changes to protect children from abuse
and neglect. Largely due to her efforts, an important bill was
passed which allows physicians to photograph children without parental
In 1978, Dr. Callas was appointed Chief of
Pediatrics by Kaiser Permanente, the first woman to be appointed a
department chief. She was also Assistant Clinical Professor
of Pediatrics at the University of California, San Francisco and has
served as Board Secretary of the Easter Seals Society.
When she retired from Kaiser in 1989, Dr.
Callas focused on her work at UCSF, becoming Director of Pediatric
Urgent Care for five years. In the fall of 1995, she moved to
Mt. Shasta where she utilizes her knowledge of pediatrics by volunteering
at a medical clinic and spending one day per week at a school-based
health clinic organized by the county schools and the local medical
group. Particularly concerned with the care of acutely sick
and needy children, she is involved in various committees concerning
emergency medical care for children and school attendance.
Read the extended biography by Nancy Nakai.
A long-time political activist, Elizabeth Smith Gatov served as Democratic
Committeewoman for California from 1956 - 1965. In 1960, she
was appointed by President Kennedy as the Treasurer of the United
States, becoming the highest placed woman in that administration.
In her early years, Ms. Gatov was active
in civic activities such as the Junior League, Red Cross and Sunny
Hills. In 1948, she became involved in the congressional campaign
of her neighbor, Roger Kent and learned that "intimately everything
that's important and lasting, if it has any social impact, gets into
the political field."
With her return from Washington, Ms. Gatov
became extremely involved with Planned Parenthood, ultimately becoming
the national organization's first Public Affairs Director. Her
advocacy on the issue of reproductive rights was responsible for enactment
of progressive legislation at the state and federal level.
Upon the death of her husband, Ms. Gatov
wrote "Windows in the Dark", a primer on the fundamentals
of money management designed to help women take charge of their financial
On her death in 1997, one historian's words
were recounted, "Widely read in both domestic and international
policy issues, deeply dedicated to the battle against social injustice,
experienced in the 'old politics' of party and precinct organization
and the 'new politics' of television...Libby Gatov represents all
that is best in American politics. Respect, trust and integrity
- her life is a personal testimonial to the glory of the democratic
process at its best."
Beginning in the 1930's, Caroline Livermore realized that the beauty
of Marin could not last forever without protection and planning.
She devoted her life to that end. She helped to halt development
of Mount Tamalpais, saving its slopes for the valuable watershed it
has become. Later, she was instrumental in having part of the
mountain formed into California's first state park. The Marin
Conservation League, under her leadership for twenty years, made successful
efforts to save Stinson Beach, which later became California's first
state beach park. She negotiated for the purchase of lands which
were subsequently formed into Samuel B. Taylor Park and Tomales Bay
State Park. To protect the scenery from the presence of unsightly
roadside billboards, Mrs. Livermore worked with the county supervisors
to pass the county's first anti-billboard ordinance.
Mrs. Livermore spearheaded a drive to save,
relocate and restore the historic Lyford Manson, now a Marin historic
site located in the Richardson Bay tidelands area, which she also
helped to preserve and protect. In leading the efforts to preserve
Angel Island from private development, Caroline Livermore worked tirelessly
for fifteen years lobbying state and national policy makers.
In 1970, Angel Island was declared a state park and a national landmark,
with Mt. Livermore, the highest peak on the island, named in her honor.
In addition to these conservation efforts, Mrs. Livermore was a founder
of the Marin Audubon Society, the Marin Art and Garden Center, the
Richardson Bay Foundation and the Point Reyes National Seashore Foundation.
Read Caroline Livermore's extended biography.
A long time consumer activist, as founder of TURN (Toward Utility
Rate Normalization) in 1973, Sylvia Siegel became the main protagonist
and protector of all utility paying consumers. After finding
that no one was really challenging the utilities companies, Ms. Siegel
became a self-taught expert of complicated utility law.
Ms. Siegel's work led to the utility industry
changing its rate structure to eliminate a discount for increased
usage - so that it now supports reduced use. Her efforts also
helped to mandate a "lifeline rate" - a minimum amount of
gas and electric made available at reasonable rates for those who
needed it most - the segment of the population on fixed incomes.
She utilized her ability to interpret complicated
data and communicate the findings into the "everyday language
that consumers can understand," and make it "juicy"
enough so that people would listen. Among some 250 consumer
advocates in California, Ms. Siegel became the most visible and viable
advocate in the state. Upon her retirement from TURN, she was
hired by the Marin County Board of Supervisors to represent the interest
of the consumers of Marin with Viacom Cable. She went on to
organize a statewide group called Consumers Cable Commission.
Recently elected to the Marin Health Care
District Board, Ms. Siegel continues to be an active advocate
and voice of the consumer, and serving her second term on the Board
Read Sylvia Siegel's extended biography.
Business & Professions
Alice Yarish has always loved to write. She wrote for various
publications throughout high school, college and law school.
During the Olympic Games held in Los Angeles in the summer of 1932,
Alice reported on the women's competitive events. Eventually
moving to Marin, she began to cover the courts, prisons and other
aspects of the criminal justice system. Writing about some of
the most famous Marin trials in recent history, Alice distinguished
herself as a champion for social justice and a talented investigative
Earning the trust of many San Quentin inmates,
she was able to explain to the reading public the trouble that some
prisoners faced and what life was really like inside a maximum security
prison. Her advocacy on their behalf continued to build her
reputation as a fighter for social justice. Alice also wrote
about the local political scene, the policies of local law enforcement
departments and was responsible for uncovering questionable practices.
Her trademark was to "stick up for the people who couldn't
speak up for themselves". Her life has had many rewards,
among them meeting several U.S. President, diplomats, famous artists
and musicians. She is also the proud founder of Marin Advocates
for Justice. She has served on many boards of local organizations
and was on the county's Adult Criminal Justice Commission for two
Read an extended biography.
A 1962 graduate of Brooklyn College with a B.S. degree in Economics,
Ms. Boxer stepped into the Wall Street scene as a stockbroker and
economic researcher. As an award-winning journalist in the 1970's,
Ms. Boxer's special assignment at the Pacific Sun was to report the
activities of the County Board of Supervisors. Active in community
affairs, she was a founding member of the Marin Economic Corps which
provided job training for low-income women, the National Women's Political
Caucus of Marin, and Marin Community Video. After two years
as a Congressional Aide to John Burton, Ms. Boxer was elected to the
Marin County Board of Supervisors where she was the first woman to
ever become its president.
In 1982, Ms. Boxer was elected to represent
the Sixth Congressional District. She became known as an effective
and strong advocate for women, children, peace and the environment.
In 1992, she was elected to the United States Senate.
Barbara Boxer has been honored in Congress
by the Consumer Federation of America, the Coalition to Stop Government
Waste, Planned Parenthood, the League of Conservation Voters, Public
Citizen, Sierra Club, the Center for Environmental Education, the
Center for Defense Information and the American Association of University
Women. She has been recognized as a champion of Human rights
by the Anti-Defamation League, the Human Rights Campaign Fund, and
the Leadership Council on Civil Rights.
Long before waste management became popular, Gloria Duncan was a leader
forging a coalition of environmentalists, consumers, business communities
and local governments. Their task was to address issues associated
with recycling, resource recovery and litter control. Working
closely with the garbage industry, she played a major role in pioneering
curbside recycling. She also assisted in the development of
an internationally-recognized recycling facility in San Rafael, one
of the first of its kind in the world.
In addition, Ms. Duncan has a record of achievement
with environmental issues. She has served on the statewide committee
of the League of Women Voters relating to water issues and solid waste
management. She was a member of the advisory council to the
Bureau of Land Management, and participated with the Association of
Bay Area Governments in designing the environmental management plan
dealing with air, water and solid waste problems of the San Francisco
area. Ms. Duncan served for eight years on the Marin County
Planning Commission. A Fairfax Town Council member for four
year she also served as Mayor of Fairfax. She was President
of the Marin Conservation League, and has maintained an active involvement
for twenty-five years. She continues a 20 year membership in
the Environmental Forum of Marin, also serving as its President for
a term. She served on the boards of the Marin Conservation
Corps and the Marin Waste Management Advisory Council for many years.
Additional leadership roles are with the Bay Model Association, where
she is currently the Chair, and the Marin Economic Council, where
she is the Vice-Chair.
Read the extended biography by Shari Rice.
A self-proclaimed radical working for peace and social justice, Dorothy
Hughes' concerns about the isolation and disarray of American families
has led to a variety of events, programs, and numerous efforts to
reshape relevant public policy.
Her efforts began while working on her master's
degree and raising eight children. She also taught disadvantaged youth
and was active in the peace movement opposing involvement in Vietnam.
Her move to Marin in 1969 began a career with the Mental Health Association
that has included developing a comprehensive community care
system for mental health clients, such as Marin Lodge, Buckalew and
Avanti houses; preventative services such as Suicide Prevention and
the Canal Children's Center; and community action programs such as
stop-bys for latch-key children. These programs are part of
a network that assists people with mental health problems and addresses
the concerns that led to the formation of the "Campaign for a
Dorothy Hughes is always there to organize,
chair or serve on important Marin-based groups devoted to human rights,
mental health, children, and older people at the local, state and
federal levels. Her fond hope is that there will one day be
a progressive national policy on children and families.
In the 1940's, Annette Klang Smail began her career as a social reformer
by working for the Congress of Racial Equality (C.O.R.E.) in Chicago.
Long an advocate of solutions to economic problems, she has lobbied
at the local, state and national levels against poverty, racism and
gender discrimination. Ms. Smail spearheaded the grassroots
efforts to have a bill passed in Congress to extend medical and pension
benefits to divorced wives of men who had been in the military twenty
years or more, overturning a Supreme Court case denying those benefits.
Ms. Smail was co-founder of the Novato Human
Needs Center and served on its board for seven years. In 1980,
she was selected as a delegate to the White House Conference on Aging,
and in 1984, she was a member of the California Task Force on the
Feminization of Poverty. She was the founder of the Older Women's
Political Caucus and served as its President from 1977 until 1995.
Annette has long been a leader in the movement for gender equality
on government commissions, and was instrumental in the creation in
1996 of the President's Interagency Council on Women. This Council
is designed to identify and eliminate laws and policies that hinder
the lives of women. The recipient of the 1994 Eleanor Roosevelt
Women of Vision Award, Annette has actively supported a Marin Abused
Women's Services program to address the problem of domestic violence.
Read Annette Smail's extended biography
Betty Times has been a leader in Marin County since high school days.
Married and the mother of five children by the age of twenty two,
Ms. Times entered a job training program when her youngest child was
two. She simultaneously entered a bachelor's degree program
and earned her B.S. in 1979. She began working for the County
of Marin as a typist in the public library and ultimately became a
major department head. As Director of Citizen's Services with
the County of Marin, Ms. Times was responsible for providing services
to the most vulnerable of Marin's citizens.
Ms. Times' public career includes three elections
to the Sausalito School Board, serving as President three times, a
founding member of the Marin County Commission on the Status of Women,
President of the Marin NWPC and its national Vice-President, Chair
of the Marin Democratic Central Committee, board member of Marin General
Hospital, and service on numerous local and regional boards.
After her retirement from county government, Ms. Times
became Administrative Director of the Marin City Project, where she
displays her outstanding leadership as that community works to be
active in economic and community development and to take advantage
of the opportunities afforded by the Marin City USA development.
Focusing on coordination of efforts to serve Marin City, she works
to improve the conditions and well-being of Marin City's residents.
(Betty passed away in 2001)
Member of a pioneer Mill Valley family, Jean Barnard graduated from
Vassar College in 1940 Phi Beta Kappa and first in her class with
degrees in political science and music. Concern for good government
and the environment led her to monitor board meetings at various levels
of local government which ultimately resulted in her election to the
Mill Valley City Council, on which she served for 8 years, including
2 years as mayor. In 1982, she ran unopposed for the Marin Municipal
Water District Board and served two terms.
Ms. Barnard has worked on a variety of environmental
causes including the creation of the Marin County Open Space District.
She led the battle to keep a high-rise community from being built
in the Marin Headlands and the struggle to keep Bolinas Lagoon from
being turned into a yacht harbor. She pioneered the early recycling
efforts in Mill Valley, and the effort to convince Congress to finish
acquiring Pt. Reyes National Seashore.
She has been active in the AAUW since 1970
and was president of the Southern Marin Branch. She has been
Chair of Common Cause Marin and the Marin Chapter of the World Federalist
Movement. Ms. Barnard was active in the early years of Planned
Parenthood of Marin and the League of Women Voters, and helped to
launch the National Women's Political Caucus of Marin.
Born to great wealth, Louise Arner Boyd had the options that a life
without financial concerns promised. In place of comfort, she
chose the challenges of sub-zero temperatures, scientific exploration,
polar bears, and cramped living quarters. Starting in the 1920's,
she took the highly unusual path of becoming an explorer of the Arctic.
In recognition of her endeavors a portion of Greenland was named "Miss
Boyd Land" and a waterway was named "Louise Boyd Bank".
During her lifetime, Ms. Boyd went on seven arctic expeditions by
ship and dog sled, conducting scientific research, including geological
studies to determine the origin and history of the fjords and glaciated
valleys in Greenland. She photographed all aspects of her expeditions,
often taking the first pictures of the native people and the regions
The maps provided to the expeditions were
often incorrect. She corrected these errors and new maps were
drawn. Plant ecology studies, collection of botanical specimens,
the analysis of cloud formations and water conditions, and recording
the depths of the region's waterways were all parts of her expeditions.
During World War II, her knowledge of the Arctic area made her an
invaluable resource to the American Navy. She also served as
a consultant to military intelligence throughout much of the war.
She received numerous awards and honors for her distinguished scientific
work. At age 67, Louise Boyd chartered an American DC4 and,
flying from Oslo, Norway, became the first woman to fly over the North
Pole. Louise Boyd was also a generous patron of the arts, supporting
numerous organizations throughout her life.
HORAN, Ed. D.
As Executive Director of the Beryl Buck Institute for Education, Carolyn
Horan is dedicated to working with schools to restructure education
to better meet student and family needs.
While working to support her two children,
Ms. Horan earned her B.S. and Masters degree from San Francisco State
University. During her education, she was involved in developing
the Regional Occupational Programs. particularly the Office Occupation
Program which offers free training for re-entry women.
Ms. Horan has a keen understanding of the
importance of change and growth for education. Some of the positions
she has held include Superintendent of the K-8 District in Fairfax,
Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services and Planning for
Marin County Office of Education, President of the Marin Chapter of
the Association of California School Administrators, President of
Marin Association of Superintendents, and Chair of the Youth Committee
for the San Rafael Rotary Club. She was in charge of the project
that resulted in the development of the 1,700 acre Walker Creek Environmental
Education Center in West Marin. Ms. Horan was a member of the
County-State Steering Committee under the California Department of
Education and the recipient of the Educator of the Year award in Marin
Rebecca Orosco de Porrata was born in a barrio in Southern California.
Although her alcoholic father was frequently absent from the home
because of his work as a longshoreman, her mother was always present
to guide and encourage her, and remains her role model to this day.
Ms. Porrata studied nursing at Creedmore State Hospital School of
Nursing Adelphi University, and Sonoma State University.
She worked as a psychiatric nurse at hospitals in New York, New Jersey,
Puerto Rico and California. She also developed a practical nursing
program in New Jersey for low income and minority women. Through
the course, the women gained entry level health care job skills.
When she moved to West Marin, Ms. Porrata
became aware of the growing Hispanic population's unmet needs - the
health problems, community isolation, language barrier, and illiteracy.
As a public health nurse, she worked with the local community to integrate
that population and solve those problems. In her position as
Health Services Coordinator at the West Marin Family Center, based
at the West Marin School, she works closely with a variety of organization
to identify outreach strategies for the Hispanic community and to
assist them in identifying their own needs.
Her daughter Alexandra is a graduate
of the nursing program at Dominican College and her daughter Yolanda
currently attends San Francisco State University.
Ethel Seiderman is nationally recognized for her creative approaches
to childcare and family, establishing cooperative nursery schools
tied to parent education programs. Growing up in the Bronx during
the Depression years, and educated at Brooklyn College during the
McCarthy era, Ms. Seiderman worked in the settlement movement, first
at the Henry Street Settlement House in the lower east side of Manhattan
and later at the Roxbury Neighborhood Center in Boston.
Under the auspices of San Francisco State University she directed
the nurseries in the Cross Cultural Education programs providing experiences
to children and opportunities to parents in order to build a greater
sense of community and communications across diverse populations.
She established and directed one of the first infant care programs
in the state, the Florence Crittendon Infant Center, geared to providing
quality childcare to teenage mothers while they finished school.
In 1973, she founded the Fairfax-San Anselmo
Children's Center which has served as a model for other programs throughout
the nation. The Center consists of the infant-toddler program,
pre-school and after-school programs, and the "Get Well Room."
Her exemplary Parents Service Project provides workshops, support
groups, respite care, and family events, all of which contribute to
enhance the leadership and sense of competency of low income
families from diverse backgrounds.
Emily Gates is known not only as a inspirational community member
and role model for young women and girls, but also as one of the most
respected and beloved chorus and musical theater teachers in Northern
California. Born and educated in Ohio, Ms. Gates married her
high school sweetheart and began a music teaching career which continued
through the birth of four children, a move to California, and twenty
years of teaching music in the Novato Unified School District.
She currently teaches Concert Band, Concert Choir, Jazz Choir, Show
Choir and Musical Theater Workshop at San Marin High School.
Ms. Gates serves as a board member and Jazz Show Choir Repertoire
Standards Chair of the American Choral Directors' Association, has
hosted choral festivals and given workshops for the California Music
Educators' Association, and is a member of the Novato Music Educators'
Conference, the California Band Directors Association and the International
Association of Jazz Educators.
Ms. Gates has assembled and coached innumerable
musical groups that have achieved regional and state awards.
She counts her real rewards through the achievements of her former
students in the musical and theatrical fields, many of whom attribute
to her the awakening of their talent.
Millie Hughes-Fulford, Marin's first astronaut, orbited space for
nine days in June 1991 as a payload specialist aboard NASA's first
Spacelab mission dedicated to biomedical studies. The SLS-1
mission flew over 3.8 million miles, 140 orbits and its crew completed
over 18 experiments during a 9 day period bringing back more medical
data than any previous NASA flight.
Dr. Hughes-Fulford's work helped to prepare
future crews for long stays in space, whether on a permanent space
station, staffing an outpost on the moon or flying years-long missions
to Mars. It also helped provide insight into medical disorders
on earth, including hypertension, bone disease and heart failure.
Science has long been Dr. Hughes-Fulford's
chosen field of study. She entered college at age 16 and majored
in biology and chemistry, earning her doctorate in chemistry.
Selected by NASA in 1983, she spent seven years training for the space
flight, all the while continuing her career as a biochemist directing
cellular research at the Veteran's Affairs Medical Center in San Francisco.
Following the Spacelab mission, she
served as Scientific Advisor to the Under Secretary of the Department
of Veterans Affairs for 3 years. Today, as a Professor at the
University of California Medical Center at San Francisco, in addition
to her duties with the VA, Dr. Hughes-Fulford continues as a principal
medical investigator for a number of projects, including the study
of cancer with the VA and the regulation of bone growth with NASA.
Read the extended biography by Connie Karczewsk
When Marguerita Johnson graduated with a Master's in Education in
the 1930's there were few teaching positions in the North for an African-American
woman. When she was able to find work in her home state of Illinois.
she moved to Florida and taught in a one room school house until the
advent of the Second World War. There she became extremely active
in church and civic affairs, primarily in the area of civil rights
and, with her husband, raised five children, in addition to working
At age 56, Ms. Johnson "retired"
and moved to California. She entered U.C. Berkeley and obtained
a Master's Degree in Library Science. She found work in Marin
and gravitated to Marin City to get closer to her church and the African-American
community. Ms. Johnson quickly became a leader, serving on both
the Marin City Community Service District Board and the Community
Development Corporation Board. Ms. Johnson served nine years
on the Marin County Commission on Aging, including two years as its
chairperson. She was instrumental in developing the Village
Oduduwa Senior Housing development which provided low-income housing
for the elderly. She also helped establish what is now known
as the Marguerita Johnson Senior Center.
REV. JANIE ADAMS SPAHR
The Rev. Spahr first began serving people in Marin in 1975 as Associate
Pastor of the First Presbyterian Church in San Rafael. In 1979
she was forced to resign as Executive Director of the Oakland Council
of Presbyterian Churches when she "came out" as a lesbian.
She founded and served as Executive Director of Spectrum Center for
Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Concerns (Formerly Ministry of Light).
Since 1980 Spectrum has been the only social service agency serving
the needs of lesbian, gay and bisexual people in Marin County by starting
such programs as the Marin Aids Project, Marin Chapter for Parents
and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, Rainbows End Youth Program, Lesbian/Gay
Parents Group, AIDS Interfaith of Marin, New Horizons and Women's
In December, 1991, the Downtown United Presbyterian
Church in Rochester, New York chose the Rev. Spahr to be one of their
four co-pastors. Eleven months and two Presbyterian court battles
later, the Rev. Spahr was denied permission to act as pastor due to
her sexual orientation. In spite of this setback, the Rev. Spahr
was chosen as the first nationwide lesbian Presbyterian Evangelist
educator. She has and will continue to encourage and strengthen
thousands of people who share her hopes and dreams for the just treatment
of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in our community
and throughout the country.
Growing up in Fairfax, the young Karin Alstrom spent long, happy hours
roaming Marin's hills. In the early 1970's when her favorite
Cascade Canyon was targeted for development, Ms. Urquhart declared,
"Over my dead body!" and launched a career that swept
her from devoted mother of seven to environmentalist with respected
credentials and political sophistication.
Ms. Urquhart's environmental work as an early
organizer of People for Fairfax Cascades dovetailed with the creation
of the Marin Open Space District which now manages over 10,000 acres
of recreational land in Marin. Ms. Urquhart has served as a
commissioner for the district since its creation in 1973.
For many, Ms. Urquhart's name is synonymous
with the Marin Conservation League whose board she joined in 1976
and then presided over from 1977 to 1979. She became MCL's Executive
Director in 1980 and successfully managed its steady growth in membership,
community respect and credibility. She has served on the boards
of a multitude of local groups including the Marconi Conference Center,
Marin County Chamber of Commerce, Marin Society of Artists, Marin
Agricultural Land Trust, Environmental Federation of California, People
for Open Space, and the Environmental Forum of Marin. In 1982,
she was the founding chair of the Marin Conservation Corps.
In 1996, she retired from the Conservation
League and became Executive Director of Digital Village. She
was also appointed by the Board of Supervisors to represent the County
of Marin on the board of the Marin Community Foundation. Retired
once again, she is enjoying her garden, her business (Urquhart and
Associates), and continues to be active on many non-profit, Marin
Internationally acclaimed author Isabel Allende began writing novels
in 1981. Since then her books have been translated into 27 languages;
two of the books were made into motion pictures and theater plays.
All her works have a common theme: life is precious and should be
lived free from oppression. Her novels feature female protagonists
whose strength, intelligence and creativity enable them to endure
hardships, fight oppression and improve the world around them.
A Marin County resident since 1988, Ms. Allende
typifies the characteristics of her protagonists. She combines
toughness with gentleness, spirituality with independence. A
Chilean native, Ms. Allende, through her actions and her novels, fought
the Pinochet regime until its downfall in 1988. Originally a
journalist, she wrote her first novel, "The House of Spirits",
in 1981 to bring attention to the brutality of the Pinochet regime.
Since becoming a Marin resident, Ms. Allende
has greatly and purposefully lent her support to numerous philanthropic
organizations and agencies which enrich our community.
Ms. Allende has received several honorary
degrees and her books have received numerous awards including:
Best Novel of the Year-Panorama Literario, Chile, 1983; Book
of the Year, Germany, 1984; Grand Prix d'Evasion, France, 1984, Grand
Prix de la Radio Television Belge, Belgium, 1985; Freedom to Write,
Pen Club, USA 1991 and many others.
Read more about Ms. Allende on her web site:
Read the extended biography by Marianne Rogoff
Business & Professions
From her first job as program director of a "start-up" radio
station called KTIM, to her work as an editor of the China Daily in
Beijing, Beth Ashley has had a rich and varied career.
Ms. Ashley has reflected Marin County's history
to new readers and captured warm reminiscences for its long-time residents.
She has made us look at our responses to important issues by revealing
her own thoughts and feelings to us. She has helped everyone
in Marin to grow and become more aware of who we are and where we
During the 1950's, she was one of two women
news editors on daily newspapers in California. During that
period, she was elected President of the United Press Editor's Association
of Northern California. She had job offers from the two major
newspapers in San Francisco, but turned them down because she preferred
to work in Marin where she could be close to her children and be part
of the local community.
Ms. Ashley has had her own public relations
firm, traveled the world and written about it, captured the essence
of Marin in her legendary columns and in her most recent book, "MARIN."
She also worked in 1990 in Moscow on Komsomolskaya Pravda and
on USA Today in Washington in 1996. She is a role model
for success through hard work, perseverance, kindness and compassion.
Not content to just identify problems, Margaret Azevedo has always
been one of the few who solves them. Ms. Azevedo moved to Marin
County in 1951 and became involved with the local Democratic Party.
She chaired the successful campaign for reelection of Vera Schultz
to the Board of Supervisors in 1956. Shortly thereafter, she
was appointed to the Marin County Planning Commission where she served
almost continuously until 1979.
Her early experiences on the Planning Commission
prompted her to spearhead a drive to develop a Countywide Plan.
This plan, the first of its kind in the state, defined corridors of
land use in the county - inland, agricultural and urban. She
worked during the 1960's and 1970's to conserve the coast of Marin
as a founding member of the Point Reyes National Seashore. In this
capacity she helped to preserve the inland agricultural areas through
the creation of Agricultural Preserves in central and west Marin,
enhanced the urban corridor with open space zoning and greenbelts,
and expanded public transportation and programs for affordable
housing. As chair of the Transportation Committee of the Marin
Council of Civic Affairs, she played a pivotal role in the drive to
bring public transportation to Marin. Ms. Azevedo continues
to serve the community today as a member of the State Coastal Conservancy.
As a young mother, Joyce Goldfield spent hours on the ice-skating
rink, in the ballet studio and in her sail boat. After a violent
attack on her life, which she miraculously survived, Ms. Goldfield
developed multiple sclerosis (associated with the trauma of this attack).
Subsequent balance problems interfered with her ability to ice skate
at her previously level of expertise and she returned to her childhood
love, horses. While riding, she was bucked off a horse and confined
to a full-body cast for two months. Discussing her frustration
about the cast and hindrance to her freedom with her friend Duane
T. Irving, they talked about the problems of disabled youngsters,
confined to wheelchairs, unable to properly enjoy the freedom and
healing powers of the wilderness.
On July 9, 1977, at Duane's ranch with 12
riders and 6 gentle horses, she opened the Halleck Creek Riding Club,
a Marin County 4-H Club. The club has grown to a membership
of over 500 riders of all ages and disabilities, with a core of 100
volunteers and 35 horses. Ms. Goldfield has written a book about
20 years of Halleck Creek in which she states that Halleck Creek is
an affirmation that life is a joy, regardless of the pitfalls,
and that it is more important to celebrate what you CAN do, rather
than to grieve over what you cannot.
SHIRLEY A. THORNTON
A strong advocate of equality and excellence in education for all
children, Dr. Shirley Thornton served as Deputy Superintendent of
the Specialized Programs Branch of the California Department of Education
from 1986 through 1995. She also served as Vice-Chair of the
Board of Trustees of the Marin Community foundation. She was
named to the board by the Foundation's first sic trustees in 1986,
and was re-appointed to a second term. She is a retired Colonel
in the United States Army Reserves with her last assignment as a member
of the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
As Deputy Superintendent, Dr. Thornton was
a strong voice and prime "mover and shaker" to improve programs
statewide in career vocational educational special education and adult
education, state special schools, alternative education and programs
for "at-risk" youth.
Dr. Thornton's contribution to education
is most visible in the bold and innovative program she instituted
ten years ago --- the California Local Educational Reform Network,
C-LERN. With technical assistance, resources and training provided
by Dr. Thornton's division, C-LERN schools, including the San Rafael
City Schools, learned to transform their organization to meet the
needs of students more effectively by providing equal opportunity
for all students regardless of ethnicity, race, linguistic, social
or economic differences.
Read the extended biography by Sheri Rice
Kay Boyle was a renowned poet, teacher and author of poetry, short
story collectives and numerous articles. For twenty years her
short stories in the New Yorker helped to define literary form.
As a woman in a man's profession, she served as the New Yorker's
foreign correspondent in the 1940's.
Encouraged by her mother to become
a writer, despite formal education ending at the eighth grade, Ms.
Boyle defined her writing as an expatriate in the "lost generation"
colony of artist and writers in the Paris of the 1920's.
The accomplishments of which she was most
proud were her teaching and humanitarian work. She was a professor
of English at San Francisco State University for eighteen years,
retiring at age 77. As a passionate woman with strong convictions,
she sought to better the world by fighting Nazism and McCarthyism,
by focusing on the anti-war and civil rights movements, and by founding
the San Francisco Chapter of Amnesty International.
Her awards and honors were legion: O. Henry
prizes for short stories, fellowships, and a California Literature
medal. She was one of the few women admitted to the National
Institute of Arts & Letters and continued her writing after moving
from San Francisco to Marin in 1989. In 1989, she was honored
by the Women's Foundation for her contributions to the causes of peace,
freedom and human rights.
Sports & Recreation
Rosie Casals is a championship tennis player, but beyond that she
is one of the pioneers of women's tennis. She has worked tirelessly
throughout her career and has been a major force in attending prestige
and money for the women's game. She is a co-founder of the Women's
International Tennis Association where women were finally able to
speak with a single, strong and effective voice to advance the opportunities
for female tennis players. As an advocate on behalf of women
and women athletes, Casals is the founder and President of Sportswomen,
Inc., an active force in promoting women-owned businesses. Her
goal is to develop leadership talents in women, motivating them to
break down barriers and strive for equality.
Casals has provided an opportunity for women,
as well as men, to play competitively in their later years with her
Tennis Classic, the "Over-30" tournament circuit.
She has supported tennis opportunities for less advantaged young girls
and is active in youth organizations, conducting several tennis clinics
each year for less advantaged youth. She supports the Endangered
Species Project through the Rosie Casals Celebrity Tennis Invitational.
Not content with simply achieving as an outstanding athlete, she has
worked actively to make opportunities available for others, especially
women. A resident of Marin for the past 24 years, she is the
tennis pro at Harbor Point Racquet Club in Mill Valley.
M. SAMUEL CONLAN O.P.
Sister Samuel, a member of the Sisters of St. Dominic, is a dedicated
and exemplary educator. She received her Ph.D. in English Literature
from Stanford University and joined the faculty of Dominican college
in 1957, serving as President of the College from 1968-80. She continues
to teach English. Under her leadership, the college was transformed
from an all women's college into a co-educational institution.
She spearheaded the placement on campus of a model Development Center
for children with special needs and supported the development of a
Special Education Teacher Training Program which earned statewide
recognition for excellence. Seeing the need for the college
to be an integral part of the community, she expanded the Board of
Trustees to include members of the business and professional community.
Through her work in the field of education
for over 40 years, Sister Samuel has influenced the lives of scores
of students. She is teaching by example that you can address
the world with confidence, serve with courage, principle, elegance,
compassion and grace. In 1980, she received the Dominican College
Distinguished Service Award and in 1981, School Master of the Year.
Golden Gate University awarded her an honorary degree in 1980.
Phyllis Faber graduated with a Master's in Microbiology from Yale
University and attended San Francisco State. She is a recognized
authority in the area of environmental issues, particularly wetlands.
Her work in long-term monitoring of wetlands in San Francisco Bay
is providing data for a new round of marsh restoration projects.
She is the author of two wetland field guides, published through her
own Pickleweed Press. Under her ten-year editorship, the California
Native Plant Society's journal, Fremontia, has become the
most influential native plant journal in the country. Ms. Faber combines
talents in science, politics, education, environmental policy, and
She co founded and served as chairwoman of
the Marin Agricultural Land Trust (MALT) and, in 1972, she was in
the forefront of the fight to attain coastal zone protection for California.
She served on the California Coastal Commission for eight years.
She was a founding member of Marin Discoveries and the Environmental
Forum of Marin in whose training program she has taught for 22 years.
In addition to local interests, she serves on a number of statewide
boards including the Planning and Conservation League, the League
for Coastal Protection and Pro Esteros.
She received the Environmentalist of the
Year award from the Marin Environmental Alliance in 1990, the Marin
Green Award from the Marin Conservation League in 1990, and the Coastal
and Ocean Management Award from the American Society of Civil Engineers
Read the extended biography by Barbara J. Euser
HON. BEVERLY BLOCH SAVITT
Business & Professions
In 1983, Judge Savitt became the first woman to serve on the Marin
County Superior Court bench. She earned her law degree at Bolt
Hall School of Law at U.C. Berkeley. She and two other attorneys
formed the first all-female law firm in the country. She was
the eighth woman to join the Marin County Bar Association and the
second to serve as its President. She has generously contributed
her time and energy to the education of lawyers and judges, particularly
in the area of family law. She has been the founding member
of many important organizations whose central purpose is to empower
women and ensure that their voices are heard: the California
Women Lawyers, the Marin Chapter of the National Women's Political
Caucus of Marin, and the Center for Families in Transition.
In the 1970's she was active with the Marin
County Chapter of the League of Women Voters when she analyzed and
made recommendations for improving the juvenile court system in Marin.
She also served as Vice Chair of the Juvenile Justice Commission.
While serving on the Marin Council for Civic
Affairs, Judge Savitt recommended reforming the grand jury selection
system and developed a questionnaire for the court which is still
in use. She has been instrumental in planning and implementing
many changes to improve the quality of justice in Marin County --
including initiating a new way to handle family law matters and promoting
alternative dispute resolution. In 1983 she was honored with
the Women Making History award. Although she retired from the
bench in 1995, Judge Savitt still serves as a private judge.
Margie Belrose is founder and
director of The Belrose School and Theatre in San Rafael. At The
"Belrose", Margie Belrose teaches, performs and directs.
Theater colleagues proclaim that Margie exemplifies the stage motto,
"The show must go on." Through hard work and steadfast
devotion to her dream, she has earned the respect of associates and
audiences. In 1954 she and her late husband, David, founded a school
for performing arts in Marin. The Belrose School and Theatre today
offer Marinites affordable theater, and opportunities to act, write,
produce and direct. Belrose has taught dance, music, acting and
singing to generations of local families. Her tenacity and perseverance
have served her through the years when she has been called upon to
surmount overwhelming odds.
Abandoned as a child, she lived in an
orphanage except for short periods with her aunt and father. After
graduating from high school she moved to San Francisco where she met and
married one of her dance teachers. The sudden death of her husband
in 1971 left her alone to raise her two children while operating The
Belrose School and Theatre. Today, with her son, she operates a
large non-profit costume shop that benefits the Belrose Performing Arts
Center scholarship program. One of her programs is the Belrose Jr.
Players for children eight to fifteen years of age. She provides scholarships
for children to enable them to participate in Junior Players and the
Belrose Musical Summer Camp program that has been in operation since 1978.
Read the extended biography by Marilyn L. Geary
Janet Daijogo is the consummate
teacher -- a role model of strength, flexibility and compassion as she
endeavors to fulfill her goal of instilling in children a sense of
importance, uniqueness and personal power. A kindergarten teacher at
Marin Country Day Elementary School since 1984, she has had a
positive impact on hundreds of children. She has incorporated an
Aikido/Energy Awareness Program into the kindergarten program. She
holds a second degree black belt and uses aikido to build sensitivity and
strength, and to teach children to be at peace with themselves and
centered. Prior to teaching kindergarten she spent 18 years working
at the Marin Child Development Center in San Rafael, where she helped her
students "mainstream" and go on to college and productive
Ms. Daijogo understands how emotional trauma
can affect a child. In 1942, she and her family were forced to leave
their California home and live for three years at a relocation camp where
Japanese-Americans were interned during World War II. Ms. Daijogo
received her B.A. degree from the University of California at
Berkeley. In 1990 she was honored by the California State Department
of Education with the California Educator Award for teaching excellence.
Through the Resource Directory of Marin Women,
she serves as a volunteer speaker to children about her wartime
experiences. A Mill Valley resident, she also designs art-to-wear
Elberta Eriksson is a social
worker, family therapist, and a leader in child advocacy and family
issues. A graduate of Sacramento and San Francisco State
Universities, she is on the faculty at Dominican College and the California
Graduate School of Psychology. As the Director of the
Multi-Cultural Outreach Project at the Family Service Agency in Marin and
formerly a family therapy consultant at Operation Give a Damn, Ms. Eriksson
received 20 year service awards from both organizations. She has
developed multi-cultural awareness training programs for teachers and
community workers in agencies and schools.
Ms. Eriksson is actively involved in the Marin
City Project, participating in the design of the social services to be
provided. She is serving her third term on the Human Rights
Commission and is the founder of the Marin African-American Coalition,
which provides social, political, educational and cultural exchange.
She has received awards for her contributions to the prevention of child
abuse from both the State of California and the Marin County Board of
Supervisors. Her Study of "Interracial Marriages (Black/White)
in the Bay Area" was published in 1970. A Mill Valley resident,
she is a Board Certified Diplomat, a State Delegate on the Democratic
Committee to advance family and children's rights, and a charter member of
the American Family Therapy Academy.
Read the extended biography by Nancy Harris
Martha Martinez volunteered
for many organizations that provided services for the Latino population in
Marin, especially those that helped the Latinos become more a part of the
community. Where no programs existed, she started them. One of
her most outstanding services was the work she did for the Novato police
department in composing Spanish translations for publications. She
worked with the Marin Independent Elders Project, the Marin Housing
Authority, Fair Housing La Familia Center, In-Home Support Services of
Marin and the Commission on Aging. Ms. Martinez developed a
Language Bank to bring bilingual volunteers to serve low income seniors in
Her respect for elders fueled her and she
directed her energies toward the elderly in general and the Latino elderly
in particular. She formed the Corazon Latino groups for senior
Latino women and for men. She founded a program with the Novato
Police Department called "Are You OK?", which is still
operating, in which volunteers call home-bound seniors every day to check
on their safety. She served as a mentor to many Hispanic women in
Marin, encouraging them and promoting higher education. Ms. Martinez
was born in Guadalajara, Mexico. After attending school in San
Antonio, Texas, she worked in Mexico City as a translator for the
Rockefeller and Ford foundations as a secretary to the Minister of
Agriculture, returning to the United States to live in 1965. She
died September 13, 1995. Novato Police Chief Brian Brady said,
"Martha Martinez's accomplishments and legacy will live on.
The police and this community lost a friend."
TIRZA LOTTE STRAUS
Ellen Tirza Lotte Straus is a
rancher and an environmentalist who has dedicated her life to preserving a
viable agricultural community in West Marin. She is credited with
building a bridge between Marin's dairy ranchers and its
environmentalists. She co-founded the Marin Agricultural Land Trust
(MALT), the first agricultural land trust in the nation and a model for
protecting agricultural lands. Almost alone among the ranchers, she
and her husband supported the creation of the Point Reyes National
Seashore, opposed high-density in the West Marin General Plan, and
supported A-60 zoning. Mrs. Straus and her family have been dairy
ranchers for more than fifty years, providing a model for environmental
awareness within the farming community. Since 1960, she has opened
the ranch to students and others to teach about agricultural life.
Her family recently transformed their dairy into an organic operation, the
first one west of the Mississippi.
She helped conceive and produce "Farming
on the Edge" by John Hart, the story of agricultural land
preservation in Marin. She holds a B.A. in Natural Science and
Mathematics from Bard College in New York. She is on the board of
the Greenbelt Alliance, the Tomales Bay Advisory Committee, and the Rural
Land Use Committee of the Marin Conservation League, and is a member of
the West Marin Growers Group. She has also served on the
environmental Action Committee of West Marin, the Environmental Forum of
Marin and the Community Partnership Committee of the Marin Community
Foundation. She is an artist and a former member of Artisans
Read the extended biography by Barbara Euser
Business & Professions
Kit M. Cole has dedicated her professional life to bringing women
into leadership roles in the financial field. As a young divorcee
with five children under six, she left her job teaching to work as
an assistant in a brokerage house. She quickly obtained her
brokers license and became one of the first women stockbrokers hired
by a major brokerage firm in the United States.
Five years later, she founded Cole Financial
Group, Inc., an investment advisory firm specializing in providing
financial guidance, education and investment management to women.
Today, Cole Financial Group manages $50 million in investments.
A year after starting Cole Financial, she co founded New Horizons
Savings & Loan, securing her destiny as one of the first women
in the country to be the founding chairman of the Board of Directors
of a financial institution. It also made New Horizons one of
the first financial institutions in the country organized and managed
by women. In 1991, she founded San Rafael Thrift & Loan,
and again championed gender equality in decision-making power.
She is currently Chairman/CEO of the Thrift whose assets at year end
were over $68 million.
Ms. Cole offers programs in personal finance
and investments for women and has co-founded two community organizations,
Wednesday Morning Dialogue and Marin Forum. A Girl Scout leader
for 17 years, Cole has served on several community boards, including
the Bay Area Girl Scout Council, United Way, and Mill Valley Film
Festival. She is currently Vice-Chair of the Marin Women's Commission
and Co-Chair of the Commission's Economic Resource Committee.
Since 1974, Donna Garske has been devoted to spirited activism on
behalf of women, working initially with women in the criminal justice
system, and then as Executive Director of Marin Abused Women's Services
(MAWS). Throughout her 17 years at MAWS, she has led the way
with innovative responses to men's violence against women, including
an internationally replicated reeducation program for batterers, and
one of the first transitional housing programs for battered women,
for which she earned an award from the American Planning Association
Her advocacy efforts have influenced legislation
such as the Federal Violence Against Women Act and a California law
establishing minimum requirements for batterers' programs. In
1992, she guided MAWS in creating "Transforming Communities:
Creating Safety and Justice for Women and Girls" as a learning
center for preventing violence against women and girls, recognized
as a model approach by the National Academy of Sciences.
Ms. Garske, a San Rafael resident, was selected
as a 1995 National Gimbel Foundation Child and Family Scholar to explore
new approaches to preventing family violence. Her resulting
article, "Transforming the Culture: Creating Safety, Equality
and Justice for Women and Girls," was published in Preventing
Violence in America (1996). In 1996, she was appointed to the
Board of Directors of the National Association of Prevention Professionals
and Advocates. Donna helped develop Europe's first batters'
program and works with the Network of East-West Women to support domestic
violence programs in Eastern/Central Europe and the former Soviet
Union. Her tireless commitment, enthusiasm, humor, integrity
and vision serve as an inspiration.
Read the extended biography by Shari Rice
HON. JOYCE LUTHER KENNARD
Joyce Luther Kennard's journey through life has been remarkable:
from early childhood spent in an internment camp in West Java during
World War II; to preadolescence spent in the jungles of New
Guinea with her widowed mother and four other families in a small
Quonset hut with no running water; to an American immigrant;
and to a California Supreme Court Justice. In April 1989, Governor
Deukmejian appointed Kennard to the California Supreme Court, making
her the second woman and the first individual of Eurasian descent
(Dutch-Indonesian-Chinese) to serve as a justice on the state high
court. She has been re-elected twice.
Kennard's early education had been limited
and all schooling ended shortly before her 16th birthday when an infection
resulted in the amputation of her right leg. At age 20, Kennard
immigrated to America where she worked as a secretary in Los Angeles.
Seven years later, her mother died in Holland leaving Kennard her
life savings of $5,000. She enrolled in college, and finished
in three years, while working part time. She graduated magna
cum laude and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. Kennard then attended
law school at the University of Southern California and, simultaneously,
obtained a Master's in Public Administration, receiving the school's
"Outstanding Thesis" award.
Kennard is a frequent dissenter on the state
high court where her opinions reflect a fierce independence.
She has been described as a "judge's judge," an apolitical
purist. She has received numerous honors and awards.
Read the extended biography by Nancy Smith Harris
Ruth Sluser's 35-year teaching career has encompassed serving "at
risk" and special education students and administering programs
for teenage mothers. Devoting herself to helping those with
special needs help themselves, she has made a practical difference
in the lives of many young women. She has provided the vision
to see a high-risk person as a successful graduate and member of the
work force. She has inspired her charges to find appropriate
career paths and remain goal-oriented, despite the many obstacles
Through the Cal Learn program, Sluser provides
guidance to teenage mothers and pregnant teens who are attempting
to complete their high school education and enroll in vocational programs
designed for economic independence. She mentors at least a dozen
girls at any given time, seeing each one at least weekly. She
arranges parenting classes, nutrition workshops, counseling sessions
and transportation. She celebrates their success and teaches
them how to solve adult problems with patience. She is remembered
by one of her students as "the first adult who really listened
to me and helped me feel I was worth something." Many of
the young women she has helped stay in touch and seek her counsel,
wisdom and wit. She attributes her success to her mother who
returned to work to provide the financial support for Sluser
to complete both B.S. and M.S. degrees at the University of Illinois.
Retired from teaching, she continues to administer the Cal Learn program
and serve the needs of young women, offering tough love, guidance
Read the extended biography by Wendy Norwood
JEAN BEE CHAN, Ph.D.
Jean Bee Chan, Lucas Valley resident, is an outstanding educator and
mentor. As a professor of mathematics at Sonoma State University
since 1973, Dr. Chan has been instrumental in bringing a sense of
community and mutual support to the Mathematics Department which has
had an immeasurably beneficial effect on the morale of students and
Dr. Chan has championed a cause, believing
that a firm understanding of mathematics and science is critical to
success in our highly technical society. She is committed to
providing equal educational opportunities to all. To this end,
she established a family scholarship fund for Sonoma State students
entering the teaching profession, and founded the Asian Scholarship
Endowment Fund which helps send students of Asian descent to college.
Dr. Chan is passionately concerned about mathematics education for
girls, who tend to lag behind boys in math and science.
Beyond her own community, Dr. Chan is Chair
of the Northern California Section of the Mathematical Association
of America, involving over 100 mathematics departments in thousands
of mathematics faculty and students. She has provided leadership
for the Marin Chinese Cultural Group and was a founder of the Asian
American Alliance of Marin, which is dedicated to bringing justice
and equality to all citizens. As a result of her contributions
to the community, Dr. Chan was honored by the Marin County Marin Luther
King, Jr., Humanitarian Award in 1996.
Read the extended biography by Nancy Harris
Anna Halprin, a Marin County resident for over 50 years, has won national
and international awards in recognition of her prestigious achievements
as a dancer and choreographer. Halprin is considered to
be one of the most highly esteemed 20th century dancers, whose ranks
include celebrities such as Martha Graham, Alvin Ailey and Merce Cunningham.
She has received the largest dance award in the country, the Samual
H. Scripps/American Dance Festival Award for lifetime achievement.
Since the late 1930's, Halprin has revolutionized
her art form and has inspired fellow choreographers to take modern
dance to new dimensions. She has been an innovator throughout
her career, experimenting with improvisation, with the audience-performer
relationship, and with the place of dance in the social and political
In the early 70's, when she was diagnosed
with cancer, Halprin's focus shifted to healing, not only for herself,
but for others and for the planet. This concern led her to work
with cancer patients, and to create healing rituals for the community.
One such ritual, the "Circle the Earth" dance, is performed
annually at Easter on Mt. Tamalpais and has been introduced in 36
countries throughout the world. Her "Planetary Dance: A
Prayer for Peace," was staged in Berlin at an event commemorating
the end of World War II. In 1995, Halprin was invited by Mikhail
Gorbachev to present an invocation at the State of the World Forum
in California. She published Dance as a Healing Art,
as a source of guidance and support for those living with a life threatening
Read the extended biography by Rita Gardner
ELIZABETH THACHER KENT
Social Change (posthumans)
Elizabeth Thacher Kent, a matriarch in the founding family of Kentfield,
is one of the few Marin County women to be elected posthumously to
the Marin Women's Hall of Fame. Kent was a distinguished proponent
of women's rights and international peace and was instrumental in
securing women's right to vote.
Kent took up permanent residence in Marin
in 1907 and immediately became a vocal activist in support of women's'
suffrage. When her husband, William, was elected to the U.S.
House of Representatives, Kent leveraged her position as a Congressman's
wife to support the national suffrage movement. She was a featured
speaker at the 1913 and 1914 conventions of the National American
Women's Suffrage Association (NAWSA) and shortly thereafter assumed
leadership of their Congressional Committee. By 1915, she helped
form the Congressional Union (later re-named the Women's Party), which
picketed the White House in support of suffrage. Kent was arrested
twice for her suffrage demonstrating. However, her cause prevailed
and in August 1920 the Susan B. Anthony Amendment to the United States
Constitution was passed guaranteeing American women the right to vote.
In addition to supporting suffrage, Elizabeth
Kent was committed to the cause of world peace. In the 1930's,
she provided leadership to the Women's International League for Peace
and Freedom. She and her husband were also early supporters
of the fledging conservation movement. They donated a large
tract of land to the U.S. Government to preserve old-growth redwoods.
Their gift, the Muir Woods National Monument, provides a lasting testimony
to the Kents' exemplary lives of public service.
Read the extended biography by Nancy Smith Harris
PAMELA WRIGHT LLOYD
Pamela Wright Lloyd of Mill Valley has devoted much of her life to
safeguarding the environment. She was a founder of the Marin
Conservation Corps (MCC), the first local community conservation corps
in the U.S. which provides disadvantaged youth with opportunities
to learn land stewardship and develop job skills through community
service. In 1972 Lloyd co-founded the Environmental Forum of
Marin to inform community members about the environment. She
was also instrumental in developing the nationally recognized Marin
Countywide Plan which continues, 20 years later, to provide real protection
to Marin's natural environment.
Lloyd was the first women President of the
Marin Municipal Water District Board of Directors where she
helped guide the county through its first major drought and established
policies that were later replicated in other parts of the country.
In 1987 she was appointed to the San Francisco Bay Regional Water
Quality Control Board, and has been called one of its most respected
and effective members. In 1990, she was awarded the Ted Wellman
Memorial Award by the Marin Conservation League for outstanding community
service in protecting water resources.
Lloyd has demonstrated leadership and vision
in all her undertakings. As former Marin County Supervisor Al
Aramburu said of Lloyd, his former aide, "She is a woman of uncommon
intelligence, dedication and integrity, serving as an exemplary role
model for women of all ages." Lloyd is highly respected
for the strength of her environmental convictions, her willingness
to respond to the concerns of others, her fair-mindedness, and her
general good nature. Her achievements will benefit Marin County,
the Bay Area environment, and its people for decades to come.
Read the extended biography by Stephanie Douglass
Frances Steadman's selection for the 1998 Marin Women's Hall of Fame
is an appropriate tribute to her courage and leadership in the cause
of peace and justice. Born to Quaker parents with strong convictions,
Steadman grew up with a commitment to oppose all warfare and to disallow
discrimination against people of other races. For more than
three decades, Stedman has risked her own welfare and freedom on behalf
of disenfranchised peoples in this country and around the world.
She has immersed herself in social issues such as civil rights, nuclear
war, prison reform, homelessness, human rights and environmental degradation.
Her selfless dedication to others is truly inspiring.
In the early sixties, Steadman traveled into
the South to support black suffrage and to register black voters.
She was also a vocal supporter of the nuclear disarmament movement,
and withstood a jail sentence for protesting against nuclear weapons.
At some risk to her own life and health, she has spearheaded the collection
and distribution of material aid to people in Guatemala, Nicaragua,
El Salvador and Chiapas.
Steadman has been a longtime chair of the
Social Concerns Committee of the Marin Unitarian Fellowship, and a
leading spirit of the Marin Gray Panthers. She has been an activist
with the Marin Advocates for Justice and a board member of the Marin
Interfaith Task Force, as well as a member of the Marin Welfare and
Immigration Network (Marin WIN). She has organized the peace
and social justice contingent of the Corte Madera Fourth of July Parade
for the past two decades. Despite all of this activity, she
finds time on a weekly basis to lead the singing at a local senior
day care center.
Frances Steadman has demonstrated the tremendous
energy, organizing ability, charm and goodwill that women can bring
to causes that serve not only the needy, but also society. She
is an exemplary role model for her family, her friends, and her community.
Winifred Baker's musical and conducting excellence has brought the
best of choral music works to audiences in Marin, the Bay Area, New
York and Europe. For forty years, she has conducted the Winifred
Baker Chorale and San Francisco Civic Chorale. The Chorales
have performed with the San Francisco Symphony, the Marin Symphony,
the San Francisco Civic Opera, the San Francisco Pops, and sang twice
in New York's Carnegie Hall.
Ms. Baker has created a legacy of trained
singers throughout the Bay Area and the country. Some of the
original members of her Chorales and Children's Chorus still sing
with her, as do several of their children. Others continue to
bring musical talents they developed under her tutelage to choruses
and audiences throughout the world.
The world of conducting is one that has been
primarily populated by men. Ms. Baker has ignored the musical
glass ceiling by her perseverance, her energy, and her attention to
excellence. Ms. Baker has won respect from many, including Arthur
Fiedler, Sandor Salgo, Peter Toboris (who invited Winfred to
conduct in Carnegie Hall) and Gary Sheldon, conductor of the Marin
Symphony. In 1976, she became the sixth woman invited to join
the London-based Incorporated Society of Musicians in the Conductor's
Section, sharing this honor with such notables as Benjamin Britten
and George Solti. Her impressive musical skills have dissolved
barriers, paving the way for other women to perform and conduct in
the great cathedrals and music halls of the world.
In addition to conducting her choruses, Ms.
Baker is a Professor Emeritus at Dominican College and teaches piano
classes on campus. She is an active member of Marin Music Chest,
passionately advocating for a return to music education in schools
and colleges. She has received numerous awards for her musical
contributions including the "Distinguished Women Award"
conferred by Dominican College, the San Francisco Arts Commission's
"Award of Honor," the Women Musicians of San Francisco's
"Musician of the Year" Award and the "Music Educator
of the Year" Award, elected by the Marin Symphony, Marin Opera
Company, Marin Ballet Company and Youth in Arts.
Winifred Baker's passion for musical beauty
and her commitment to excellence has inspired her listeners, her students
and her colleagues for over forty years. She is a giant among
musicians and a beacon for those who aspire to make a mark, whatever
their chosen profession.
ROSARIO CARR-CASANOVA, Ph.D.
Dr. Rosario Carr-Casanova's every move is focused on the empowerment
of women and the improvement of their status. Throughout her
dual careers as an accomplished psychotherapist and a professor, Dr.
Carr-Casanova has demonstrated her belief in this goal. She
has a deep love for education and a dream of providing opportunities
for as many people as possible. As a university professor, she
has achieved national acclaim as a cross cultural and multi-racial
specialist. Dr. Carr-Casanova is aware of her impact as an example
to young Latinas and encourages young Chicanos to excel.
Dr. Carr-Casanova is also highly trained
in public policy and works to provide better services to women of
all races and to poor and needy families. She worked to establish
the Marin County Minority Mental Health Services, and to have counseling
services in Spanish provided though the Family Service agency.
While on the Board of Directors of United Way, Dr. Carr-Casanova brought
five Latino agencies in as new members. At the national level,
she has been instrumental in providing birth control information in
Spanish to the nation's Hispanic population. In addition, Dr.
Carr-Casanova raises funds for the Chicana/Latina Foundation, helping
Hispanic women to access higher education. In 1994, she was
named Citizen of the Year by the Marin Council of Agencies.
As a psychotherapist, Dr. Carr-Casanova works
with groups of youth who are believed to be dangerous and is successful
in bringing out the best in the community's most disturbed and discarded
teenagers -- many of whom she has seen become successful business
people under her tutelage.
Dr. Carr-Casanova is truly a champion of
the underdog. She is continually looking for better ways to
understand, represent and serve the Hispanic people. She advocates
that people obey the law, work hard and be of service to their families
and to the community. She stands as a powerful model, especially
for women, of focused determined action to uphold human rights and
to ensure dignity for ali.
Read the extended biography by R.L.S. Kropf
Patty Garbarino, vice president of Marin Sanitary Service, has been
at the forefront of recycling technology nationwide. Her company
began the first curbside recycling program and she was instrumental
in beginning Marin's Hazardous Waste Collection program. In
the male-dominated waste management business, Ms. Garbarino has demonstrated
courage and leadership. She challenged a movement by the California
Refuse Removal Council to violate anti-trust laws -- and won.
Despite the less than welcoming attitude in the industry toward women,
she has won the respect of her colleagues. In the year 2000,
she will serve as the first woman president for the Refuse Removal
Besides running a successful business, Ms.
Garbarino contributes her company's time, services and money, as well
as her own, to support community projects. She serves as Chair
of the Marin County Planning Commission and serves on both the Marin
Ballet Board and the Rafael Theater Renovation board. In addition,
Ms. Garbarino spearheaded the Dominican College's campaign to renovate
and expand its campus.
As president of the San Rafael Chamber of
Commerce, Ms. Garbarino aided in raising of $500,000 from the business
community to support the public schools. She was also instrumental
in organizing a transit tax campaign. Ms. Garbarino was a board
member and a major fund raiser for the San Rafael Public Education
Foundation in its early years. She also organized and energized
hundreds of volunteers throughout three years of campaigns to establish
the San Rafael Public School parcel tax. During the first campaign,
she deferred critical surgery in order to shepherd the campaign through
the election. The campaigns were successful, aided by her efforts,
and have provided the San Rafael Schools with critical funding.
Ms. Garbarino went on to found a state level lobbying organization
for the California public schools called Kids Voice.
Patty Garbarino is a woman who dares to be
courageous, especially on behalf of issues about which she cares deeply,
of which there are many. She is a public servant, a dynamic
business leader and an outstanding spokeswoman.
FELECIA GAIL GASTON
Felecia Gail Gaston was denied admission to her local school of ballet,
when she was a child, because of the color of her skin. Years
later, this painful experience was to become the impetus for one of
her greatest accomplishments.
In the late 80's, while serving as the Community
Relations/Cultural Events Coordinator at the Marin City Multi-Service
Center, Ms. Gaston became interested in developing opportunities for
Marin City Children to increase their self-esteem. One such
opportunity was a scholarship program she developed in collaboration
with the Marin Ballet, which enabled Marin City children to take classes
as the Marin Ballet. By 1990 the Multi-Service Center closed
its doors, leaving Felecia without a job and the children without
an avenue to pursue ballet.
Refusing to let an opportunity die, Ms. Gaston
shared her dream with Anne Rogers, executive director of the Marin
Community Food Bank, and with Community Action Marin (CAM), an umbrella
organization for social service programs. With their support,
she founded "Performing Stars of Marin," a non-profit agency
offering low-income children, predominately African American, an opportunity
to learn dance, martial arts, grooming, discipline and manners in
an environment of respect and support.
Ms. Gaston was responsible for bringing "Performing
Stars" from a struggling neighborhood program, with no budget,
to a successful county-wide organization. Through her determination
and commitment, she has earned great respect in Marin county and beyond
and has brought together people of various racial and ethnic backgrounds.
Her successful relationship with other Marin arts organizations impressed
the Marin Community Foundation, which has become the major financial
supporter of "Performing Stars."
Ms. Gaston enjoys the enthusiastic support
of many Marin City families as well. They see "Performing
Stars" as a positive, inspirational alternative to the perils
of poverty. As one of her nominators said, "Felecia is,
herself, a 'Performing Star' in Marin County."
Read the extended biography by Marilyn L. Geary