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glimpses sisterhood of traditions class notes

Investing and Inspiring The Veritas Legacy Society

You don’t have to choose between providing for your loved ones and supporting Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy. Through our gift-planning program, we can help you support your passions and create the kind of gift you’ve always wanted to make – even if you never thought it was possible.

A bequest is one of the easiest gifts to make. With the help of an advisor, you can include language in your Will or Trust specifying a gift to be made to family, friends or Flintridge Sacred Heart as part of your estate plan.

You can specify a gift of... • a percentage of your estate


iew from the Top is published three times a year by the Development Office and is distributed to alumnae, past and current families, and those who have shown a continued interest in Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy. For comments and suggestions or to receive a copy of View from the Top, please send an email to

Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other schooladministered programs.

• a specific asset • the residue of your estate

Thank You

If you have already designated Flintridge Sacred Heart as a beneficiary of your estate, please let us know so that we can welcome you as a member of the Veritas Legacy Society. For information on including Flintridge Sacred Heart in your future plans, please contact Margaret Kean, Chief Development Officer, at 626.685.8389 or

Margaret Anne Kean Chief Development Officer Gayaneh Pezeshkian Avanes ‘00 Director of Flintridge Fund/ Planned Giving Officer Leigh-ann Danner Director of Marketing and Communications Sally Francis Office Manager Leilani McHugh Data Manager Lois Montorio Director of Alumnae and Parent Relations Patricia Ostiller Director of Major Gifts Allison Rost Communications Associate Charlotte Saydah Special Events Manager Designed by McGregor Creative, Inc., Pasadena, CA On the cover: English teacher Elizabeth Ross confers with Shelby Tom ‘12 in the library.

table of contents




from the Top


Letter from the President


Glimpses Short takes on and around the hill.


Board Profile: Christy Mozilo Larsen ‘84


9 A Strong Foundation: The Bedrock of a Successful Future 14

A Common Thread: The Sisterhood of Traditions


Alumnae Class Notes


Tolog Family Tree: The Orlandini Family


Volunteer Profile: Gary and Julie Pantiskas


Donor Profile: Anne and Keith Sharp


Alumna Describes Life in Botswana with Peace Corps


In Memory

20 31

Inside Back Cover: Faculty Profile: Nancy Power

Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy, a Catholic, Dominican, college preparatory school, educates young women for a life of faith, integrity and truth.



S. Gloria Marie Jones, O.P. Congregational Prioress

Christy Mozilo Larsen ‘84 Chair

Ann Holmquist S. Gloria Marie Jones, O.P.

Marina Marrelli ‘78

S. Diane Briden Becker, O.P. Vicaress General

S. Carolyn McCormack, O.P. President

Leslie Kawai ‘80

William Spathelf

Christopher LaBonge

S. Johnellen Turner, O.P.

S. Reina Perea O.P. Councilor

Peter Conti, M.D.

Rita Illig Liebelt ‘76

Michael Davitt

Paul Locker

S. Carolyn Marie Monahan, O.P. Councilor

Sarah Dooley ‘98

Darla Vessadini Longo ‘75

Robert Edwards

Robert Malchione

S. Alicia Lucy, O.P. Councilor

Robert Harper

Steven Mann

Barbara Marshall

Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy is accredited by the Western Catholic

FSHA is a California 501 (c) 3 nonprofit corporation governed by a 20-member

Education Association (WCEA), the California Association of Independent

Board of Directors made up of religious and lay individuals. FSHA engages

Schools (CAIS) and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).

in fundraising from foundations, corporations and individuals associated

FSHA is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)

with the school. A growing endowment provides firm financial footing for

and the National Catholic Education Association (NCEA), among others.

the school, whose annual budget is enhanced by voluntary contributions.

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Letter from the President


ear Friends,

There are so many new and exciting projects taking place on our campus and within our community at Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy! This current issue of the View from the Top highlights several of them, including a delightful look at the traditions that have bound us together as a school community through the years. Perhaps the most significant activity to share is the Board of Directors’ October 2010 approval of our five-year Strategic Plan, whose four goals will direct future growth and development at Flintridge Sacred Heart. I am pleased to share the comprehensive process we undertook, which has resulted in a focus on the areas of Curriculum for the 21st Century, the Boarding Program, Marketing and Admissions, and Financial Sustainability. This plan offers a blueprint for improvement across our campus; it holds amazing potential for excellence. The health and significant strength of our Flintridge Sacred Heart community at this time rests significantly on the shoulders of our amazing Board of Directors. Composed of alumnae, past parents, current parents and friends of Flintridge Sacred Heart, our directors are providing leadership in more than 11 board committees that touch on every aspect of campus life. Board Chair Christy Larsen ’84 has brought her extensive talent and skill to her alma mater and has succeeded in bringing our board leadership to a new level. Our gratitude for her and each of our directors is profound. I want to highlight the newest committee that has been approved by our Board of Directors. Under the competent leadership of Rita Illig Liebelt ’76, the Mission Committee has as its goal the fostering and deepening of the Dominican


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charism across the Flintridge Sacred Heart community. Having moved through a process of Dominican study and formation themselves, the Mission Committee is engaged in seeking varied and creative ways to ensure that Flintridge Sacred Heart’s mission as a Catholic, Dominican school is strengthened and clarified. There is an energy in this group that is electric: students, faculty, staff, current parents, past parents, alumnae and friends of FSHA will be the beneficiaries of their work. It is our hope that every person who claims a connection to Flintridge Sacred Heart will also claim our Dominican heritage and be prepared to promote our mission to educate all in a spirit of faith, integrity and truth. As this year unfolds, the quality of education that each young woman receives continues to be of utmost importance. We remain clearly committed to a strong Catholic foundation, rigorous academics, arts and athletic programs that engage our girls’ talents, as well as a wide variety of co-curricular programs. The successful intellectual experiences of our young women, highlighted by the success of our Academic Decathletes, our new and exciting Speech and Debate team, our amazing Tolog athletic programs, our visual and performing arts productions, and the many and varied ways our girls engage in life on the hill with spirit, energy and incredible dedication must be affirmed. With this foundation in place, we believe every young woman’s opportunity at graduation and beyond will be affirmed. That is our goal; that is our mission. And we see it come alive not only here on the Hill, but in the continued journeys of our wonderful alumnae. What allows all this to take place, however, is the incredible generosity of the Flintridge Sacred Heart family, both in gifts of time and treasure. We celebrate this generosity in our volunteers and in our donors, whose interest and support of FSHA is an incredible gift! We celebrate our Dominican Sisters and our Board of Directors, whose commitment to serve young women from all economic backgrounds is strengthened by new foundations who have stepped up to support scholarship needs. We are grateful for the fundraising energies around the golf tournament in October and GALA, which is coming in May. We celebrate and thank our entire Flintridge Sacred Heart community for their strong support of the Flintridge Fund, which allows us to meet our daily educational needs and to pursue outside support of our school. If you have not already done so, I urge you to give a gift of any size to the Flintridge Fund through the envelope that is enclosed with this magazine or by giving a gift through the school’s website. Please know it is a privilege to partner with you in this work of Catholic education for your daughters. For almost 80 years, the Dominican Sisters of Mission San Jose have brought their loving presence to the thousands of young women and their families who make up our Flintridge Sacred Heart community. This community, past, present and to come is at the heart of our Mission; count on our very best efforts for their ongoing success. With gratitude for your ongoing support,

Sister Carolyn McCormack, OP President

May God Creator, bless us, May God, Redeemer, heal us; And may God, the Holy Spirit, Fill us with light. Dominican Blessing

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one book, one school


he entire Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy community – students, faculty and staff – read Zoya’s Story: An Afghan Woman’s Struggle for Freedom by John Follain and Rita Cristofari over summer vacation, with the goal of providing a common forum to discuss controversial issues and facilitate frank discussion about human rights. The memoir tells the true story of Zoya, a girl whose parents were killed by Muslim fundamentalists. At the age of 14, she moved to Pakistan where she attended a school funded by the Revolutionary Association of Women of Afghanistan. After Zoya finished her education, she moved back to her home country to spread word of the Taliban’s violation of human rights, including men whose arms were amputated for thievery and women whose fingertips were chopped off because they wore nail polish. Throughout the year, faculty members have explored themes from Zoya’s Story in their classes. During a summer research class, social-studies teacher and librarian Erin McGann Maloney ’89, who had students research the history of Afghanistan and U . S . i n v o l v e m e n t there, assigned a paper on a theme of their choice from the book. Students also had the opportunity to try on a burqa to gain a sense of the life Zoya so vividly described. Allison Lieskovsky ’00 asked her art students to create pieces that grew out of classroom discussions, including political posters inspired by the conditions of Zoya’s country and the plight of women there. FSHA’s own Book Club for past and current mothers read Zoya’s Story for its August 2010 meeting, and all agreed it would be helpful for the girls in understanding the Afghan culture and youth. “Many thought our girls would want to help,” said Book Club member Sister Carolyn McCormack. “For myself, I was captured throughout the story by the amount of suffering endured by the Afghan people, and wondered who could help and how their deep wounds will be tended to and healed.”


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Above: Work by AP 2-D Design student Tracy Zhang ‘12 Below: Work by AP 2-D Design student Megan Farrell ‘11




he Pasadena Independent Schools Foundation (PISF), an innovative youth philanthropy initiative that works with students from area schools, received the Outstanding Private Foundation award at a luncheon at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on November 8, 2010. The goal of the program is to give students an understanding of philanthropy and nonprofit operation, teach skills in critical thinking and decisionmaking, develop and build leadership skills, and learn the benefits of volunteerism. Participants gain handson experience, ultimately making grants to charitable organizations in their local and surrounding areas, thanks to the support of PISF sponsors. FSHA has been involved in the PISF program for two years, and 15 Tologs currently volunteer with the organization.

Representing the 15 Tolog volunteers with PISF were sophomores Elizabeth Togneri, Brianna Silverman, Elizabeth Rojas and Madeleine Togneri, pictured with organization founder and chairman Jonathan D. Jaffrey. (Photo courtesy of J. Jaffrey)

Athletic News fALL SPORTS


The cross-country team was all smiles after a third-place finish at the state meet, which put the Tologs on the podium for the first time. (From left) Coach Kirk Nishiyama, Stephanie Vargas, Casey Basso, Nora Welsh, Riley Gilmartin, Paulina Antaplyan, Annie Maguire, Rebecca Armstrong, Noelle Niederhaus, Amanda Aguilar, Gabby Fitzpatrick and Maddie Romero. Standing behind the team are coaches Betsy Sauer and Emily Clark.

The varsity volleyball team with coach Anne Turkal Arlie ’97 (far right) and assistant Daniel Penrod.

he cross-country team finished the season with a third-place showing at state finals on November 27, 2010 – which was the best finish for cross-country in FSHA history. The Pasadena Star-News named Kirk Nishiyama the girls’ cross-country coach of the 20102011 season, and the paper also chose Paulina Antaplyan ’12 and Riley Gilmartin ’14 for the girls’ area first team. Volleyball powerhouse players Camille Coffey ’11 and Alyssa Walton ’11 finished their senior season with a loss in the first round of the CIF playoffs to Huntington Beach’s Edison High School. But Coffey still came away with several awards, including 2010 All-Area Girls’ Volleyball Player of the Year and co-MVP of the Mission League. Dana Budzyn ’13 and Alyssa Walton ’11 – who will continue her volleyball career at the University of Delaware later this year – were also honored for their contributions. Walton wasn’t the only volleyball player who committed to a college sports program: Coffey will play volleyball at Fairfield University in Connecticut. On the soccer team, Alyssa Conti ’11 will attend Johns Hopkins and Natalie Zeenni ’11 will play for the University of New Mexico, while Katie Johnson ’12 has committed to USC and Lindsey Espe ’12 to Belmont University in Nashville. Diver Emily Boyd ’11 will attend the University of Michigan.

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Admissions Officer Recruits Boarding Students in Asia F lintridge Sacred Heart Academy traveled to Asia in October as Associate Director of Admissions Catherine O’Brien attended recruitment fairs in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Japan hosted by The Association of Boarding Schools. She had the opportunity to meet with families looking for a boarding experience in the United States.

or student at the table with you,” O’Brien said, “because they can give prospective families their experience of Flintridge Sacred Heart.”

O’Brien interviewed 12 students who were very interested in attending FSHA, many of whom had already submitted their applications for the fall of 2011. “They were all excited about studying abroad and really knew what they were looking for in a school,” she said. She also met with current FSHA parents of Chinese students from Shanghai, who took her out for Chinese food and gave her a fantastic tour of Old Shanghai. “They completely spoiled me,” O’Brien said. The parents also shared their FSHA experiences with potential families. Alumnae Samantha Ko ’97 and Erika Lau ’98 were on-hand to assist in Hong Kong. “It is always so powerful to have a parent

Alumnae Samantha Ko ’97 (left) and Erika Lau ’98 (right) help Associate Director of Admissions Catherine O’Brien at the TABS fair in Hong Kong.

Wardrobe of a Rose Princess F

or Princess Katie Thomson ‘11, a member of the 2011 Royal Court for the Tournament of Roses, one of the perks that came with the position was a free wardrobe. Each princess received 35 pieces of clothing and accessories, all available from Tournament sponsor Macy’s, from which more than 55 different outfits could be assembled. To be certain as to which piece went with each outfit, the Rose Queen and princesses were

given binders that detailed every ensemble’s makeup – ensuring that the seven members of the Court looked exactly the same. “Dressing alike was much less constricting that I thought it would be,” said Thomson. “It felt more like a uniform, and we really were a team representing the Tournament.”

Left: Rose Princess Katie Thomson shows off a pink, short-sleeve cashmere sweater with gray pants and a black jacket, all by Charter Club, and set off by pearls with matching earrings. Not seen are her black Bandolino boots. Center: For a casual look, she sports a black turtleneck, white Keds, INC jeans and a crocheted vest with faux fur, also by INC. Right: Princess Katie wears a black leather skirt by INC with a red cowl sweater by Alfani, which is covered with a black shrug by INC.


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Alumna Speaks About Teenage Depression T

he Parents’ Guild speaker series continued on Jan. 6 with a lecture from author and retired psychotherapist Dr. Kathleen McCoy ‘63. Dr. McCoy wrote The Teenage Body Book, which earned the American Library Association’s “Best Book for Young Adults” award. She was a regular columnist for Seventeen magazine, has written for publications ranging from Redbook to the New York Times, and has been a frequent guest of national television shows, including Oprah and The Today Show.

“Studies show that 14 percent of young people will have an episode of major

depression before their 15th birthday,” said Dr. McCoy, who addressed the group of parents and faculty about teenage emotional issues. “How do you tell an irritable, angry, depressed teenager from an irritable, angry, normal, moody teenager?” McCoy asked. She educated the audience on identifying risk factors, understanding the differences between adult and teenage depression and recognizing its symptoms.

Dr. Kathleen McCoy ’63 returned to the hill to speak to current parents about teenage depression.

To view Dr. McCoy’s full address, visit our YouTube page at

FSHA Welcomes New Board Members


lintridge Sacred Heart gained four new perspectives at the beginning of the 2010-2011 school year with the addition of four new trustees to the Board of Directors. Michael Davitt, father of Abby ’12, has strong ties to the local community. Davitt is the Director of Real Estate for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, serves on the Planning Commission in La Cañ ada Flintridge and was recently elected to a seat on the city council. The Davitt name is familiar on the hill; his father John sat on the FSHA Board of Directors from 2001-2009. Immigration attorney Sarah Dooley ’98 brings a different voice to the board. As a Tolog, Riverside-raised Dooley spent her time on the hill as a boarding student – as did her sister Ellen ’04. “I want to offer the perspective of that alumnae group,” said Dooley. “I hope to bring a stronger connection between younger alumnae and the board.”

New members of the FSHA Board of Directors include Leslie Kawai ’80, Sarah Dooley ’98, Steven Mann and Michael Davitt.

Leslie Kawai ’80 combines the current parent and alumna perspective with her board appointment. Kawai brings a background in sales to the table, and she’s already experienced in representing FSHA to the larger community – she was named Rose Queen in 1981. Her connection to the hill has regained strength in recent years thanks to the enrollment of her daughter, Tara Kawai- Daniels ’13. Steven Mann, the Regional Managing Director of the Private Bank for Wells Fargo in Pasadena, realized what a special place FSHA was when he first stepped on campus with daughter Carly ’12. “It’s an exciting place to be a part of,” said Mann, who brings his financial expertise to the board.

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board profiles

board Profile

: Christy Mozilo Larsen ‘84


hristy Mozilo Larsen’s connections to the school run deep. She graduated in 1984, four years after her sister, Elizabeth Mozilo Fitzpatrick ‘80. Her father served on the school’s Advisory Board in the 1990s. And two of her nieces (Meghan Fitzpatrick ’10 and Gabrielle Fitzpatrick ’13) are Tologs as well. Larsen insists that she was a quiet freshman who blossomed under the tutelage of great teachers – current assistant principal Katy Sadler among them – and a strict administration. “Sister Ramona and Sister KJ ran a tight ship,” she says. “You didn’t avert your eyes and you didn’t break the dress code. It was academically challenging and we had to be present,

It has been a conscious decision to make up the membership with various professionals who bring a range of strengths and areas of knowledge.

attentive and prepared.” She recalls that there wasn’t a lot of competition among the girls, and it was OK if you weren’t the best at everything. “We went to great colleges and universities, but it really was about ‘the whole girl’.” During her stay on the hill, Larsen lettered in swimming all four years, was junior class activities chair, a member of the Student Christian Action Movement, and participated in the Drama Club. “It was an extremely positive experience,” Larsen shares. “I received an education in being a strong woman with confidence and self-respect. I wasn’t quiet when I left and I gained unbelievable friendships. I understood the value of friendship – both how to be a friend and how to be discerning in friendship. As adults, we may not see each other often, but when we come together, we are very supportive and have a bond through our shared experience.” After Flintridge Sacred Heart, Larsen went to Gonzaga University where she majored in English/political science

FSHA Board of Director Chair Christy Mozilo Larsen ’84.

with a minor in international studies. After a four-year sojourn in the movie industry, she returned to California to work in the mortgage business in Pasadena. “I had been working at Countrywide Funding since I was 15,” reports Larsen. “I knew the business and loved it. After a few years working in a branch office, I entered the newly formed management training program.” Larsen worked hard and quickly rose through the ranks, managing various U.S. regions of the company. The last several years were spent in the United Kingdom establishing an international arm of the company through a joint venture. Upon her return to the United States in 2001, she retired.

(continued on page 28)


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o remain strong, Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy evaluates itself constantly, ensuring its ability to deliver its mission in an ever-changing world. In 2006, members of the Curriculum Board – a group of administrators, faculty and staff tasked with the review of the course of study at FSHA – took a hard look at the programs developed for students. “There was a sense that we were stagnating,” said Dr. Ann Holmquist, former religion teacher, past parent and current member of the Board of Directors. “We felt there was a need for a renewed vision, a time for change and innovation.” That renewed vision led to an in-depth evaluation of FSHA’s mission, curriculum and structure, a new mission statement and philosophy, and a continuing plan to keep FSHA at the forefront of academic excellence.

Veritas Study Led by Dr. Holmquist and guided by other members of the Curriculum Board, Flintridge Sacred Heart began the Veritas Study, a two-year process of self-evaluation designed to ensure FSHA’s strong position leading into the future. Groups comprised of all members of faculty and staff met to review curriculum, calendaring, structure and mission, with the latter pushed to the forefront. “We soon realized that everything hung on who we hoped to be and how we hoped to go about getting there,” said Dr. Holmquist, who led the mission group. “This was the

beginning of our retrieval of our Dominican identity, and the realization that we were going to be challenged by a tension between our desire to be as inclusive as possible while also being competitive in the academic market.” Although the fruits of the Veritas Study are still emerging, the work led to the creation of the following Mission Statement and Philosophy, along with a new document illustrating the traits we desire of our Flintridge Sacred Heart alumnae, which is titled “Portrait of the FSHA Graduate.”

Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy Mission & Philosophy Statement The work that developed from the Mission and Philosophy group of the Veritas Study led to a year-long, communitywide process of reworking FSHA’s Mission Statement. In addition, the school Philosophy was reviewed and updated. A new document, “Portrait of the FSHA Graduate,” developed as a kind of blueprint for the alumnae that FSHA strives to produce. The final piece of the mission document, “Characteristics of Professional Excellence,” is a framework guiding the excellence of the school’s faculty and staff.

Mission Statement Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy, a Catholic, Dominican, college preparatory school, educates young women for a life of faith, integrity and truth.

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Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy



n integrated life of study, prayer, service, and community, predicated on the motto of Veritas – truth – constitutes the pillars of Dominican life and the foundation of Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy. In the spirit of Saint Dominic and Mother Maria Pia Backes, foundress of the Mission San Jose Dominican Sisters, Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy was established in 1931 for the education of young women. FSHA shares in the 800-year heritage of the Dominican Order of Preachers, which is embedded in Catholic faith. A Catholic, Dominican vision of education commits Flintridge Sacred Heart to educating the whole person in an educational setting that allows adolescent girls to flourish into young women who are well-prepared for college and beyond. To this end, FSHA strives to partner with parents in the formation of their daughters. FSHA recognizes the interdependence of physical, emotional, spiritual, intellectual, social and environmental health, and its benefits for learning. Thus, Flintridge Sacred Heart offers a rigorous college-preparatory curriculum, outstanding visual and performing arts, an excellent athletic program, a dynamic campus ministry and service program, unique leadership opportunities in clubs, athletics and cocurricular opportunities. The Flintridge Sacred Heart community seeks to prepare young women to make positive and meaningful contributions to the world; prepared to lead with integrity; guided by their commitment to seek and act in truth. As a day and boarding school, Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy welcomes young women from all parts of the world, various cultures and faith traditions, and commits to educating them in an inclusive community environment. Flintridge Sacred Heart students, their families, faculty,

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staff, administrators and board members endeavor to create a community rooted in the ministerial vision of Jesus – a vision that is a source of identity and hope. In this community, students thrive, supported and encouraged as they mature in their capacities for critical thinking, independent decision-making and creative expression. FSHA sees in its young women the full potential of their personhood – their innate goodness and giftedness. Every effort is made to spark a hunger for knowledge, thirst for truth, enthusiasm for the discovery of justice, goodness and beauty, as well as the courage and resiliency to keep one’s heart open. FSHA strives to create a safe environment of trust in which young women are cared for and challenged so as to discover their unique gifts, to test themselves and to assume responsibility for their actions. Believing that God is active in all creation and in all human history, FSHA’s educational endeavors seek to promote dialogue between faith and culture, attentiveness to care of the environment and conscious awareness of the spiritual life. FSHA seeks to instill confidence in our students to pursue authentic inquiry, inter-faith dialogue, a spirit of ecumenism and experience of various cultures, so as to appreciate the diversity of God’s creation. This philosophy guides FSHA to prepare young women of conscience, who study and reflect critically upon their learning and live in accordance with their beliefs, as “contemplatives in action.” A Flintridge Sacred Heart woman is empowered by her sense of self-confidence and personal giftedness. She journeys in faith, committed to building a better world through compassionate service, and works for social justice; continuously seeking integrity and truth throughout her life.


Portrait of the FSHA Graduate: Women continuing the journey toward a life of faith, integrity and truth.

A FSHA graduate is a woman of faith, who:

• Exhibits a basic knowledge of Scriptures,

doctrine, practices of the Catholic Church and Dominican spirituality.

• Continues

to develop an awareness of the interdependence of multiple faith traditions in a complex world.

• Demonstrates

respect and love for others by acting with care, concern and compassion; acts justly, loves mercy, walks humbly with God (Micah 6:8).

• Evaluates

moral choices and issues based on a well-formed conscience.

• Joins in prayer, worship and retreats, so as to experience her personal relationship with God within a community of faith.

A FSHA graduate is a life-long learner and seeker of truth, who:

• Embraces

study as a way to gain greater perspective into herself, others and the world.

• Demonstrates

the ability to think critically: analyze, synthesize and evaluate information from a spectrum of sources so as to assess issues of contemporary life.

• Understands the interdependence of her physical, emotional, social, spiritual, intellectual and environmental health.

• Draws a connection between her ethical

stance and the ways in which she uses technology in the pursuit of learning, for social networking and media entertainment.

A FSHA graduate is a woman of compassionate service, who:

• C ontinues

to develop her selfknowledge and self-acceptance so that she may recognize the inherent dignity of all persons.

• Responds

openheartedly to human need in word and action (charity), using her time and talents to build a more just society (social justice).

• Shares

in the Dominican tradition of women who serve generously so as to be instruments of hope.

A FSHA graduate is a confident, creative participant in her local and global communities, who:

• Values and experiences community as an outcome of her ability to form positive relationships.

• Recognizes

the global implications of myriad social issues and her responsibility to respond locally as well as globally.

• R esponds with care to the needs of the environment, lives responsibly and seeks sustainable solutions to the use of natural resources.

• R ecognizes

that truth emerges in and through collaborative efforts in community.

• Acts as an agent of unity in the diversity

of communities by respecting the particularities of language, culture, race, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status and religion.

A FSHA graduate is an emerging leader for a complex world, who:

• Continues to develop her personal sense of integrity, responsibility, creativity, patience, self-discipline and ability to deserve the trust of others.

• E xercises

a growing acceptance and respect for persons with divergent points of view.

• Encourages

participation, collaboration and mutuality of respect through dialogue.

• Balances

individual opportunity with her efforts to build community.

• Trusts her capacity to seek out and take risks as a highly motivated leader who works assertively and cooperatively for positive change.

• C arries

on the legacy of care and generosity that she has inherited from her Flintridge Sacred Heart sisters, so as to sustain the future of FSHA for generations to come.

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With these new documents in place and a renewed focus on the Mission Statement as the guiding force behind all decisions, a committee of the board was formed in 2009 to examine how FSHA lives its mission and what it means to be “Dominican.”

In 2010, the Board of Directors commissioned the creation of a new strategic plan to execute the mission, address the identified areas for growth and set the overall direction of the school. A professional consultant was hired to guide the nine-month process, and a Strategic Planning Committee was formed, comprised of current and past board members, parents, alumnae, administrators, faculty and staff.

“The committee is a conduit through which all issues can be viewed, evaluated and discussed,” said Rita Illig Liebelt ‘76, alumna, current and past parent, current trustee and driving force behind the committee. “As Sr. Carolyn says, the mission statement is a living, breathing articulation of what we hold to be the most important elements of Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy. It guides us and it is a filter through which recommendations are made to the Board of Directors and Members, who are the ultimate stewards of the mission.” The committee, made up of a cross section of board members, current and past parents, alumnae, faculty, staff, our campus minister, Sr. Carolyn and Sr. Celeste, plans to educate members of the FSHA community in each aspect of the mission. The group has immersed itself in the Dominican charism of prayer, study, community and service. “The Mission Committee held a retreat in February with a focus on what it means to be a Dominican school,” said Liebelt. “This committee is both spirit-filled and energy-filled, and I truly think its members were called to serve. We look forward to planning retreats and other opportunities to share the mission and the meaning of being Dominican with the larger Flintridge Sacred Heart community.”

WCEA / WASC / NAIS EVALUATION The Western Catholic Education Association (WCEA), the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) granted the maximum six-year term accreditation to FSHA in early 2010 following the three-day examination of the school by a WASC visiting committee. The accreditation process involved an in-depth self-study which, combined with the work from the Veritas Study, helped identify not only the school’s strengths, but also areas for growth. The two studies provided FSHA with a blueprint for a comprehensive strategic plan to address specific needs in the coming years.

(On next page) Top: Freshmen clasp hands at the 2010 Welcome Liturgy Bottom: Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy’s Administration Building as seen from behind the Library.

In October 2010, the Board approved the four goals and accompanying strategies, and four goal committees were formed to begin implementation. These committees, with representatives from across FSHA, identified specific steps needed to fulfill the four goals of the plan, and are actively working on the actions identified for the first 12 months. The following is a brief overview of some of the work being done by the goal committees.

Goal 1: Curriculum Create a living curriculum to ensure that each student is well prepared for college and provide the foundation to live a life of faith, integrity and truth. Goal 1 will focus on development of the infrastructure for a 21st century curriculum, with critical thinking and reading key to the focus. Specific areas of attention will involve the vision for the performing arts curriculum, a service-learning program and college counseling. A first draft of a curricular framework for the 21st century learner is complete, and it includes the themes and skills essential to a 21st century curriculum. This is being developed by the faculty and will guide curricular decisions across all academic disciplines, as well as the creation of a rubric for new courses. This work will be augmented by creating curricular maps of all of the classes we offer. All of these efforts are key steps in reinvigorating our curriculum, and will ensure that curricular offerings across all disciplines and all grades are regularly updated, sequential from year to year, and delivered consistently and professionally by our faculty. Annemarie Bacich, our Vice Principal for Curriculum and Instruction, is leading this work. The Visual and Performing Arts Department Vision is in its final draft. This will serve as the guiding principle behind all curricular decisions in that department going forward. And a technology plan is being developed that will identify our academic technology needs over the next several years.

Goal 2: Boarding Program Create a small, fully-integrated, international boarding program of distinction and capitalize on the opportunity to foster global understanding among all students. Goal 2 will develop and implement a plan to address boarder and day student integration, faculty and boarder interaction,

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features THE FUTURE boarding curriculum and co-curricular opportunities. “We have been a boarding school since our founding in 1931,” Sr. Carolyn said. “While we still have a strong boarding program, we believe it needs to be more fully integrated into the life of the school. We are researching how we can accomplish that. This work is in its infancy, but it vital to our future.”

Goal 3: Marketing and Enrollment

Through the new mission statement, philosophy, “Portrait of an FSHA Graduate” and strategic plan, Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy has achieved that “renewed vision” that Dr. Holmquist searched for years ago. These are the fruits of a long labor, but these documents are not static – they are the living, vibrant filter through which every decision is passed, and they will continue to guide Flintridge Sacred Heart as it strives to educate young women for a life of faith, integrity and truth.

Establish a data-driven system for strategic market planning to ensure the school maintains a strong reputation as a Catholic, Dominican school for girls and maximizes enrollment in both day and boarding programs. Goal 3 will create a comprehensive, data-driven marketing plan utilizing information gathered through a wide-reaching research agenda. FSHA’s identity as a Catholic, Dominican school will be clarified and our unique position in the local academic market will be emphasized. A market research plan has been developed and the first surveys gathering information from our most recent alumnae and alumnae parents have been completed. This information, together with focus groups aimed to articulate the distinct characteristics of Flintridge Sacred Heart, is guiding the development of the marketing plan that will support our admissions efforts in the year ahead.

Goal 4: Financial Sustainability Attract the human and financial resources sufficient to achieve the vision of the school and to meet the demands of these strategic goals. Goal 4 focuses on long-term financial sustainability. This year, we have focused on the human resources needed to achieve our vision for the school. To that end, extensive work reviewing our compensation and benefits program has been completed so we can attract and retain the best teachers for our students. We are also working on identifying our financial aid requirements so we can better support those families that require assistance for their daughters to receive a Flintridge Sacred Heart education. Work has begun to update our master plan to reflect the goals of this strategic plan, and we are looking at what funds are needed to support all of the work of the strategic plan initiatives. The work of the these goal committees began in October 2010, and each group is responsible for regular progress reports to the Board of Directors and Academy Administration, as well as to all faculty and staff. We also look forward to sharing our progress with our extended Flintridge Sacred Heart community through future issues of the View. Committee work will continue as we implement the strategic plan over the next three to five years. “This is a very exciting time here on the hill,” Sr. Carolyn said. “Flintridge Sacred Heart is alive and well, and moving forward with energy and commitment to our mission.”

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ach Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy alumna has experienced a rich history of traditions that’s shaped her relationships and formed her memories. A student of today may not be aware that when she receives her class ring in a special ceremony, her fellow Tologs have done the same thing for nearly 80 years. On the same token, just as early FSHA students performed rituals that would seem quite confusing to their modern-day counterparts, older alumnae would likely find some events on today’s calendar just as foreign. And who knows what future students will look back on after they graduate from FSHA? Here’s a look at a few of the most common traditions on the hill, many of which have stood the test of time.

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The 1947 senior class of hearts enjoys the annual Valentine Party. (Inset) Senior Marilyn Langley Reinfried is crowned Valentine Queen of 1956.


OTHER EARLY TRADITIONS Bridge Coffee Hosted by the Dramatic Club, the Bridge Coffee gathered the entire student body together in the Green Room the evening before Ash Wednesday. Tologs in formal attire played cards, while the club served refreshments. (1948) “First Nighters” The same group made a practice of attending the opening nights of various cultural events off the hill. Students would dress formally and enjoy a limousine ride to a play, the symphony or a night at the opera. (1946) Christmas Play Dramatics on the hill also staged the annual Christmas play. Hugh Benson’s Nativity Miracle was an elaborate production depicting the birth of Christ. (Christmas 1948)

Valentine Party Today’s Winter Ball was preceded by the annual Valentine Party, which until the 1970s was the first general dance of the year. Seniors ruled the night, emerging into the Green Room single-file through a giant paper heart. Each class was represented by a card suit, with the seniors as – of course – the hearts. Later on, a Valentine’s Queen of Hearts was named, and she and her Court of Hearts presided over the evening. “I still remember my fellow students pinning hearts on my dress and coming through the paper heart,” remembered Valentine Queen Marilyn Langley Reinfried ’56. “Flintridge Sacred Heart was the most wonderful time of my life.”

May Day For many students, May Day was the highlight of the year. Members of the Sodality of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a club dedicated to the veneration and service of the Blessed Virgin, led the day’s festivities, which began with Mass in the morning. Afterwards, students in their white Sunday uniforms would face the statue of Mary on the hillside while standing on Senior Lawn, where they would form the letter “M,” recite the rosary and sing hymns. (Above:) The fashion show at the 1996 Mother-Daughter Luncheon included a tribute to the styles of Flintridge Sacred Heart. Highlights included original school uniforms, various graduation gowns and the Dominican habit.

Sodalists of 1949 lead the procession to the statue of Mary on the hillside during the May Day celebration.

The Sodality prefect May Queen, dressed in a formal white gown, would lead her attendants up the hill and crown the statue with pink roses. Students enacted a living rosary in the evening and later enjoyed the Sodality banquet in the beautifully decorated dining room. May Day was a beloved tradition throughout the 1960s, and Sodality provided a strong foundation for the various spiritual opportunities available at FSHA today.

Mother-Daughter Luncheon This spring event has brought FSHA women together to reminisce and celebrate since the 1960s. A feature of the luncheon, the fashion show, has occasionally gone beyond introducing the season’s new fashions. To the surprise of the audience, the new school uniform was presented during the fashion show in 1967. In 1996, Tologs turned that tradition on its head by modeling the history of FSHA, which included original school uniforms, graduation gowns and the old Dominican habit.

Father-Daughter Night Since the 1960s, Father-Daughter Night has given Tologs and their fathers the chance to dine and dance together. Today’s event is a formal, often-costumed affair that includes a dance-off between fatherdaughter teams from the different classes. “My dad was usually busy with work and I was always doing school work or hanging out with friends,” said Allegra Lucchesi ’07, “so having a night where we could enjoy each other’s company was really special.”

(Below:) Allegra Lucchesi ’07 as Fay Wray and her father Gary as King Kong at “My King and I,” the 2005 Father-Daughter Dance.

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(Above) The Class of 1947 eagerly awaits the presentation of their senior rings. (Right) FSHA class rings of today.

(Above) The Rose and Candle ceremony of 1946 brings together juniors and seniors for a final farewell. (Left) Catherine de la Paz ’05 and Michelle Underwood ’06 exchange a candle and rose at the 2005 Candle Rose ceremony.

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(Above) The graduates of the Class of 1934, FSHA’s first graduating class, originated the tradition of white dresses and red roses. (Right) The Class of 2009 celebrates graduation on Crane Field. (Below) Becky Wilcox ‘11 blows the spirit horn for fellow seniors Victoria Humphrey, Bianca Juarros and Kelsey Shaw at the 2011 Spirit Week Assembly.

Ring Ceremony In the early days of FSHA, the Ring Ceremony was a very formal affair held in the Lounge in November of each year, with seniors receiving their blessed class rings from the principal. The saying “onyx and gold stands for ideals we hold” symbolized the moment the 12th graders truly felt like seniors. The class rings of today are onyx and white gold, but since the 1970s, the junior class receives them as a symbolic welcome to the realm of upperclasswomen. Juniors in dress uniform are each paired with a senior, and the students exchange a ring for a rose.

Rose and Candle Ceremony The Rose and Candle Ceremony, the precursor to today’s Candle Rose, has evolved over the years with minimal changes. Seniors still pass lighted candles to juniors to represent the transfer of wisdom and truth, and they receive single roses, the sign of love. Early ceremonies took place in the lounge on “Aloha Night,” which was the evening before Graduation. Students dressed in formal attire and carried roses and long, tapered candles. Seniors read prophecies and said their farewells, and they were joined by the juniors to lead the student body in singing the alma mater as they walked through the halls. Today’s Candle Rose ceremony finds its home in the Gym of the Student Activities Center, where the 200 juniors and seniors – along with their parents – witness the symbolic changing of the guard. The dress uniform has replaced the earlier formal gowns, and today’s candles are battery-operated votives. The ceremony, which was the last formal gathering before Graduation, has become the first in a series of senior events spanning the three weeks before the students say farewell.

Graduation The most iconic ceremony at FSHA is also the most unchanged. Since the first senior class accepted their diplomas on Senior Lawn in 1934, young women have donned white gowns and carried red roses as they crossed the threshold from students

to alumnae. Each class wears identical gowns that are unique to their graduation year, chosen by the seniors and approved by the principal. Around their necks hang Sacred Heart medals, presented to the graduates the night before at the Baccalaureate Mass. Although the junior class no longer bears an ivy chain during the ceremony, the procession of seniors is still led by the future ASB president. She carries a bouquet of white flowers and shepherds young siblings of the graduating seniors, who act as attendants. With record-breaking class sizes in more recent years, Graduation has moved to the spacious Crane Field at the Student Activities Center with its breathtaking views of the San Gabriel Mountains.

Spirit Week When asked to pick their favorite FSHA memory, many young alumnae don’t hesitate to name Spirit Week. The week-long event pits the classes against each other in daily competitions to earn spirit points through class participation. The costumes set for each day change every year, but typical themes have included Dress Like a Boy Day, Uniform Infraction Day, Superhero Day, Decade Day, Twin Day and Hogwarts Day – the latter is a reference to Harry Potter. The highlight of the week is the Spirit Assembly on Color Day, in which each class dresses in a specific color – with seniors always wearing FSHA red. “Color Day was definitely my favorite,” said Taylor Maniscalchi ‘11. “I have waited four years to be a senior and wear all red at the Spirit Assembly!” The assembly includes dance competitions, class songs and group activities, and the day isn’t a success unless someone ends up with food on her face.

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(From top) Tologs celebrate prom in 1946, 1948 and (Inset) 2010.

From the earliest days of FSHA, young women have eagerly awaited Prom during their junior year. Although all of the early Tologs were boarding students, many were local girls with vast social connections. The “out-of-town” girls were paired with “blind dates” carefully selected for them from a list of approved, eligible young men. Senior girls in formal, floor-length gowns were individually announced to their waiting escorts, who were frequently dressed in military uniform. Early Proms took place in the beautifully decorated Lounge and Green Room, with guests spilling out onto the quiet Patio for a breather between dances. As the evening drew to a close, couples could enjoy coffee and dessert hosted by the sophomores in the Dining Room before the young men bid their dates goodnight at the door. Over the years, the length of dress, style of dance and even the location may have changed, but to the juniors and seniors of today, the long-awaited evening is as magical as it has always been.

“BUT YOU FORGOT ABOUT…” With a nearly 80-year history of defining traditions, omissions of events from this list were inevitable. Activities were not included not because of their lack of importance to FSHA and its alumnae, but due to space limitations and – frequently – a simple lack of historic information. For instance, do you remember Miss Fitch’s teas? The talent show? Kris Kringle Week? We would love to hear your stories about the Tolog traditions that shaped your memories. Contact us at alumnae@fsha. org or by phone at 626.685.8396 to share your stories and photos. While the traditions at FSHA have evolved over many years, all of them combine to strengthen the ties that bind Tologs together, and form what can truly be called a sisterhood.

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alumnae news

Alumnae Class notes Mary Jo Spreitz Riffle ‘41, Santa Barbara: Married soon after graduation and we had 48 years of being together. We had three sons and one daughter. Value my education at FSHA. I still work (for my sons) part time; otherwise, trying to “enjoy old age.” Kathleen McNabb Hackstaff ‘47, Denver, Colo.: My husband passed away in 2004. We had 52 wonderful years together and five children – three boys and two girls. I now have 12 grandchildren – the oldest a pediatrician and the youngest 4½-year-old Madeline – and three great-grandchildren. I’ve had a good life and treasure my years at FSHA. I live in downtown Denver in a condo with a beautiful view of the mountains. Lots of snow this year! Love, Kathleen.

Parents’ Guild president Valerie Nelson, Sr. Carolyn McCormack and Sr. Celeste Botello welcome Dr. Kathleen McCoy ’63, who visited campus and spoke to the Parents’ Guild in January about teenage depression (see article on page 7).

Joanne Skougard Archer ‘51, Lafayette: I graduated from FSHA in 1951. I now live in Lafayette, Calif., near St. Mary’s College. In September 2010, I attended a reunion of former students and faculty living in the East Bay. It was a wonderful event. My father learned of FSHA from a friend. Attending Flintridge Sacred Heart was the best thing that has ever happened in my life. After a few months, I was baptized and learned to live a faithful life. To this day, I follow all the rules we were taught. One of the crazy things I find myself doing is picking up lost coins and always placing them in a donation jar someplace. Thank you again for your dedication.

Sally Tupper MacAller ‘53, Glendale: Since the time 16 FSHA classmates visited my home for the super – wow that was fun, catch up with us all – alum luncheon, Ard Eevin (my house), has been listed on the National Trust for Historic Preservation. It made all the work on the 112-yearold dear worth it! Is it time to have another luncheon – soon? Would love to see my classmates and other FSHA alums again. Hooray for the current terrific Tolog soccer team; I follow them almost as closely as I do the L.A. Lakers! Elisa Zobelein Shambaugh ‘53, Fullerton: Hi fellow classmates of ‘53. Danny and I moved last June from Reno to Morningside of Fullerton, Calif. Danny became ill not long after and passed away on September 24, 2010. I know many of you remember him. We were married for 55 years. I love it here and am so glad we moved before he got ill. My son Neil, Jr. and daughter Giulii and their families live close by. My sister, Sr. Giulii Zobelein, O.P. ‘50, lives at FSHA, and I see her often as well. It’s good to be back in Southern California. I see Marian Haddad Viole ‘53, Dian Maeth Whitney ‘53 and Mary Flanagan Beaudry ‘53 occasionally. I would love to hear from anyone who reads this. My email address is

Joanna Gaynor Johnson ‘69, Rupert, Idaho: Hello classmates! Am I the only one that still feels somewhat young – until I run or I’m one of three of the oldest at my junior high? Statements like “When are you retiring?” Wow! Life has flown by, hasn’t it? Bob and I still love Idaho. Please buy more potatoes so retirement will come within the next 10 years. We have two grandkids and three kids unmarried. Two live in Hawaii – so I go for two months every summer. Two live in California. Hope you are all well. So sorry about missing the reunion – you must have had lots of fun. I love reading about all of you. Love, Jan. Julie Sparks Wilson ‘73, Newport Beach: Michelle Vessidini Sciarra ‘73, Laurie Scanlon Mitchell ‘73 and I mourn the passing of our dear classmate and friend, Ann Sember Nimmo ‘73, and we are comforted that were able to visit her last August and take her out to lunch. Many of our FSHA ‘73 “girls” attended funeral services in Escondido on September 4, 2010. We miss you, Ann! (continued on page 22)

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alumnae news

The TOLOG Family Tree


he family of Vincent and Elsie Orlandini has a long association with Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy, and with Catholic education as well. Their five sons attended St. Francis High School, and their two daughters and one daughter-in-law graduated as proud Tologs. “Attending a Catholic high school was important to my parents,” says Janet Orlandini-Mayes ’67. “Some of my fondest memories are of the Sisters on the hill – Sr. Ramona sharing her love of Shakespeare and Keats, Sr. Dolorosa teaching us Spanish, Sr. Katherine Jean and her eloquence – all while we learned how deep the love of God was within our small community.” Fred and Rose Capriccio also wanted a strong Catholic school experience for their daughter Paula. “When I visited the school and saw the statue of Jesus with his arms outstretched,” remembers sister-in-law Paula Capriccio Orlandini ’71, “it felt like he was welcoming me.” The women of the Orlandini family have given much of their time to FSHA. Janet spent time as a member of the Alumnae Association board and as her class representative, while Paula has served on several board committees as well as heading the Alumnae Association as its president in the late 1970s and again in the late 2000s. Although not an alumna herself, daughter-in-law Shelli coached volleyball at FSHA from 2000-2009 and currently hosts a summer volleyball camp on campus.

We continue our celebration of the many wonderful families who have made the decision to send multiple daughters to Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy.

The Orlandini Family

Vincent & Elsie (Arboit) Orlandini

Azalea Mayes ’10

Janet Orlandini-Mayes ’67 & David Mayes

Sara Orlandini ’05; Becca Orlandini ’13

John & Rose (medley) Orlandini Jeff & Paula Orlandini

Tina Orlandini ’07

James & Paula (Capriccio) Orlandini ’71

Alessandra Orlandini ’12

Joe & Lisa Orlandini

Samantha Orlandini ’08; Jenna Orlandini ’09

Jerry & Shelli Orlandini

Joanne Orlandini Wilson ’79 (deceased) & Andrew Wilson

The connection to the hill has been passed on to the next generation, with seven of Vincent and Elsie’s granddaughters finding a home at FSHA. “When it was time for my daughter Tina to choose a high school,” Paula says, “she only applied to FSHA.” “How could I not want Azalea to go to FSHA?” asks Janet. “The small classes, the wonderful Sisters, the closeness of the whole school – I will continue to support my school until I am no longer on this earth.” Janet Orlandini-Mayes ’67 and Paula Capriccio Orlandini ’71 celebrate their FSHA connections at the 2010 Mother-Daughter Communion and Alumnae Legacy Recognition Breakfast.

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alumnae news

Ed & Ida (ARBOIT) Glynn

36th Annual Harry G. JohansinG Golf Tournament I

t may have been the 36th Annual Harry G. Johansing Golf Tournament on October 11, 2010, but it was also a first – as in the first such event held at Oakmont Country Club in Glendale. And it was a beautiful day for 132 golfers to get in a round, accompanied by an on-course barbeque at the 5th hole and greetings from Srs. Carolyn McCormack and Celeste Marie Botello.

Peter & Pam Glynn

Kelly Glynn ’93; Michelle Glynn ’96

Patricia Glynn Yunker & John Yunker

Kristin Yunker Ocon ‘88

Grant & Elaine (medley) Niederhaus Noelle Niederhaus ’13

The Orlandini family tree has branches that stretch wider than Vincent, Elsie and their descendants. The Niederhaus family, in-laws of the Orlandinis, will see daughter Noelle graduate with her cousin Becca in the Class of 2013. Elsie’s sister Ida created her own Tolog branch with her grandchildren Kelly Glynn ’93, Michelle Glynn ’96 and Kristin Yonker Ocon ’88.

Cousins Becca Orlandini ’14, Noelle Niederhaus ’13 and Alessandra Orlandini ’12 keep the Tolog tradition alive.

Marcela Campbell ’06 provided Pro Tee Shots out on the course, which raised $1,150, and Bob Smith Toyota donated a red Toyota Prius for the Hole in One Prize. After everyone finished up on the course, they gathered for a cocktail party on the patio where they had the chance to participate in both the Silent and Live Auctions, as well as draw from a special deck of cards for a Tiffany necklace. Chair Sunder Ramani also emceed the finals in the Putt for Cash competition. The 250 dinner guests then gathered in the dining room for a three-course meal, which was kicked off by an invocation from Sr. Carolyn McCormack. ASB President Alanna Pires ’11 briefly spoke about how she’s benefited from scholarships at FSHA, and the event came to a conclusion with a paddle pledge round and the awarding of more than $4,500 in raffle prizes. Overall, the golf tournament raised more than $70,000 to fund the Harry G. Johansing Endowed Scholarship Fund.

Golf chair Sundar Ramani joins Sisters Carolyn and Celeste in welcoming participants to the 2010 Harry G. Johansing Golf Tournament at Oakmont Country Club.

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alumnae news

Alumnae Class notes

Karen Lutge McAlhaney ‘75, Williston, S.C.: Our youngest son, Shane, graduated from Air Force Basic Miltary Training on October 29, 2010, at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio. We flew out to Texas to watch his graduation. He graduated with honors, was ranked 11th in the class of 718 Airmen, fourth in Physical Fitness, and one of 10 that achieved all four ribbons available to the class. He will remain in San Antonio for two weeks during the selection process for Air Force Special Ops, Combat Controller. After the selection process, he will spend 18 to 24 months at eight different bases, training and going to scuba school, jump school, survival school and air traffic-controller school. We are very proud of our Airman! Kathleen MacNeil ‘78, Round Rock, Texas: Hello! I am new to all of this – first, I have to figure out how to change my name back to just Kathleen MacNeil! Oh, well. It’s me in very hot and dry Texas, missing SoCal very much. On the same note, very blessed in all that “we” (my 13-year-old daughter Cassie) are doing. We try to get to Cali often and were in the San Diego area last Christmas, but there was just not enough time to get up north. We’re planning to build in a day or two when we can visit some old friends. Can’t wait to really get rockin’ with our online community! Till next time! God bless!

Rose Cardenas ’68 visited the hill from Mexico with her son Alejandro. It was her first visit since 1968.

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Robin Razzano Marks ‘80, Laguna Niguel: Happy New Year to all my fellow classmates. Please pray for the son of Leslie Heidelman Provenzano ‘80. The power of prayer is strong. Our class is and always will be the best. Heather McIntosh Cassano ‘85, Rhinebeck, N.Y.: I’ve recently moved to Rhinebeck, New York (90 miles north of New York City) with my husband and five kids (ages 6-14). I’m still working at Yahoo! as a Sr. Director of User Experience. I’ve also recently graduated from Bennington College with an MFA in Writing & Literature (a low-residency program). I am writing a memoir about my experiences as a mother with three kids with autism (they’ve all recovered and are doing great). Hope all of you are well! Best, Heather. Marcellina DeLuna DeSousa ‘86, Glendale: I’ve been working as a Realtor with Podley Properties in La Cañada since 2009. I love the work because it is service- and relationship-oriented. I also love that I’m still close to FSHA by working in the neighborhood! Mina Fujikawa ‘86, Laela Weisbaum French ‘86, Bettina Brune McClintock ‘86, Rose Hegenbart Ottman ‘86 and I all got together with our husbands and children and had our annual fabulous Christmas reunion in 2010 at Mina’s new home in South Pasadena. We had a funny white elephant gift exchange that all our kids loved! Hello to class of ‘86! If you are ever in the area, I’d love to catch up! Liz D’Amico ‘86 recently emailed classmates regarding a class gettogether in summer, I think. I’m looking forward to seeing my old friends. Warmest regards, Marci DeSousa.

alumnae news

Denise Reynolds Lamas ‘87, La Mesa: I live in San Diego with my husband (a 1986 Crespi High graduate) and three children: Nicolas (12), Julia (10) and Daniela (8). We also have a wonderful black lab named “Tito” – I consider him my fourth child! I am the financial controller for a small museum in Balboa Park, and get the kids to all of their activities in the afternoon (football, basketball, soccer, gymnastics, drama, drum lessons, etc, etc). My husband is also a CPA, but has found financial recruiting to be a bit more challenging of a career. My life is crazy busy, but I am having so much fun and consider myself to be “living the dream.” Karen Pindroh Kelly ‘92, La Jolla: I moved back to California after finishing a three-year postdoctoral fellowship at the Cleveland Clinic. I have a fulltime position in the Department of Warfighter Performance at the Naval Health Research Center in Point Loma. I am the applied physiologist on staff. I am really excited to be back in San Diego, so if any of my former classmates are in the area and want to reconnect, I would be excited to get in touch with them! Michelle (Shelly) Wenker Schroth ’94, Glendale: Ellison Anne joined the Schroth Family on 8/9/10. Big sister Natalie loves showing her how things are done!

Rising Star Award recipient Wina So Tran ’97.

Ryan Poe-Gavlinski ‘97, Kearneysville, W.Va.: We recently bought our first house! We now live in Kearneysville, West Virginia. So far, we love our neighborhood! We also recently adopted a shepherd mix dog named Rambo as a companion for our pug. I am still working with Legal Aid in West Virginia and loving every minute of it. I have been there for a year now! Wina So Tran ‘97, Glendale: I am pleased to announce that I am being honored with The Rising Star Award by the Los Angeles Chapter of National Association of Women Business Owners at the 25th Annual NAWBO-LA Leadership and Legacy Awards Luncheon, which took place on Friday, March 4 at L.A. LIVE. The Rising Star is a woman entrepreneur who has established a critical milestone in her business and has displayed high potential for enduring entrepreneurial success. Mary Goodwin Curphey ‘01, Pasadena: I am working part-time as a middle school language arts teacher. Sam started a solo practice as an entertainment attorney and Bridget turned one on December 15. We celebrate our five-year anniversary next May. How did my life move into fast-forward?

Shelly Wenker Schroth ‘94, husband Allan and big sister Natalie welcomed Ellison Anne on August 9, 2010.

Eliza Jasso Nonaka ‘03, Tokyo, Japan: I’m currently in the last semester of my last year at Columbia Law School. Then it’s good-bye New York, hello Tokyo! I’ll be starting my law career at Morrison Foerster’s Tokyo office. My son Richi is almost two years old and saying short sentences in both Japanese and English. I hope we can keep him bilingual! (continued on page 26)

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alumnae news



: Gary and Julie Pantiskas Gary spent three of those early years on the court as one of the varsity basketball coaches, up as early as 5:45 a.m. for morning practice, or late in the afternoons five days a week, for more than 400 hours per year. A gifted painter, he has also donated several works of his that depict FSHA to various events, a few of which have raised funds in support of the students – a cause close to his family’s heart. “The girls here are encouraged to pursue what they are interested in,” he said. “They are not pigeonholed – they are allowed to be individuals.”

Gary and Julie Pantiskas with principal Sr. Celeste Botello at GALA 2010.


hen Gary and Julie Pantiskas let their oldest daughter make the final choice of which high school she would attend, they knew that might mean they would be “driving up that hill” for the next four years. But when Lauren ’11 spoke of “feeling at home” at FSHA, the decision was made. “Whatever your kid chooses to do,” Gary said, “you have to support it.” That philosophy has since led to the Pantiskases being a fixture on campus since 2007. With daughter Megan ’13 only a sophomore, they will continue contributing to FSHA for some time to come.

When FSHA began a marketing project in the fall of 2010 designed to identify the essential characteristics of the school, the Pantiskas family stepped up to give their support. Gary participated in a focus group in which current parents gave feedback on all aspects of life on the hill, while Julie will lend her expertise by assisting in developing that feedback into specific messages about who we are that will guide FSHA’s marketing plan. As the daughter of a teacher, Julie has always considered education to be an important part of her life. Still very active with her alma mater, Santa Catalina School, she wanted her daughters to also have a strong high school experience. “The girls here strive to live to their full potential,” she said. “They are supported by the community here, by the Sisters. We are truly blessed to have them.” Bottom left: “The FSHA Ritz” Bottom right: The auditorium and cottages through trees – limitededition prints given by FSHA as special gifts.

THE ART OF GARY PANTISKAS Long after Gary Pantiskas watches his last daughter graduate and leave the hill, his beautiful artwork will remain as part of his legacy.


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alumnae news

Alumnae Parents Never Really Leave the Hill

In clockwise order, starting from top: Eveline Siracuse with past parents and grandparents John and Gael Davitt; past parent and grandparent Ed Illig joins alumna and past parent Rita Illig Liebelt ‘76 and past parent and grandparent Loretta Cunha to share stories of the hill; after seeing three daughters graduate from FSHA, John and Teresa Salvo still feel at home on the hill; Board member Bob Harper and wife Joan are familiar faces at FSHA.


lintridge Sacred Heart Academy welcomed past parents back to the hill for its Second Annual Alumnae Parent Social in December 2010. Parents from the last four decades gathered in the beautifully decorated lounge to reminisce about their days on campus. “It’s been so long since I’ve been back,” said Loretta Cunha, both a mother and a grandmother of FSHA alums. She was glad to reconnect with fellow past parents Edward Illig and

John and Gael Davitt during the holiday get-together. “We just can’t seem to stay away!” said Teresa Salvo, who saw the last of three daughters graduate in 2008. “It’s so wonderful to see these familiar faces again,” said President Sister Carolyn McCormack. “Our families know that, no matter how long it’s been since they left us, they will always have a home on the hill.”

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alumnae news

Alumnae Class notes

Hannah Johnson ‘06, Victorville: I have been meaning to write for some time, but have yet to have the time since I graduated. Since then, I was accepted into the Peace Corps and left for Mali in July. I was in training for two months and as of September 3, I am an official Peace Corps Volunteer. Needless to say, life has changed quite a bit in the past three months, but even here in Mali I find myself thinking of all you Tologs. It is hard to believe that I graduated more than four years ago – it has certainly flown by. The funny thing is that FSHA, I have found, never leaves you. I am living in a small village with no electricity or running water and, as such, I have had a lot of time to think and I am grateful for all that was given to me. I have learned self-discipline and the ability to get along with people from another culture (and form friendships with them), and I have what has been described by some as having an insane curiosity for the unknown. I can trace all of these things back to FSHA – both the school and the boarding program – and I wanted to say a big thank-you. I hope that this year has gotten off to a good start and that everyone is well. Please send my love to the Tologs. With love and respect, Hannah. Maha Rizvi ‘10, Ladera Ranch: Like most of you, coming to FSHA was one of the biggest changes I had ever experienced. For one, no one had ever taken my cell phone away from me, or had restricted Facebook and going out during the week, and I had never been a boarder before! Soon enough, I got used to it! However, it was not until second semester senior year that I realized the importance of FSHA in my life. It made me who I am today and helped me grow! I made some of my best friends there, some of which are probably sitting and reading this (I miss you Ellie and Ana)! Without realizing it, my roommate became one of my truest, most trusted friends, and the supervisors and Mrs. Lem were people I knew cared about me and always had my back. FSHA really was home (and for those of you who

Regan Ball ’04 returned to the Hill as a representative of her alma mater, University of Connecticut, to speak to current Tologs.

were there to see me hugging the doors and the walls two days before graduation, you know I really mean it). College is amazing! I love it, but I do get homesick ... yes for Pakistan, but also for FSHA. Girls, enjoy it! There’s no time and age like high school, and no place like FSHA! It sounds clichéd, but take my word for it – the memories you make here you will keep forever (if I got into my list of memories, you’ll be here all night), so make sure they are good ones and you make the most of it! I love you, and I miss you all! Lots of love, hugs and kisses.

Keep up to date... ...with news about and for FSHA alumnae with our monthly email newsletter, News from the Hill. It includes interviews with notable alumnae, invitations to FSHA events, and the latest photos and news straight from the hill. If you don’t already receive it and would like to, simply send an email to alumnae@ with your contact information. Not online? We also produce a quarterly print newsletter with the best stories from our online edition. Give us a call at 626.685.8400 to make sure you’re signed up.


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alumnae news

Young Alumnae Christmas Social


early 80 alumnae from the classes of 2002-2010 braved stormy weather and drove up the hill for the annual Young Alumnae Christmas Social in December. Hugs and kisses, along with holiday wishes, were exchanged from our newest alums to the many members of the Class of 2005 who returned to campus for the first time since graduation. The evening also saw the introduction of the Distinguished Alumnae Award, an honor given to an alumna whose

actions support the school’s mission to educate young women for a life of faith, integrity and truth. The first of three awards was presented to Bianca Nicole “Nikki” Nepales ‘07, in recognition of the differences she has made to the lives of others through her community service work and for her contributions to society, particularly by working to bring attention to the issues of global poverty and hunger awareness.

The next Distinguished Alumnae Award was awarded to an alumna from the classes 1966-2001 at the Celebrating Veritas social on March 12, which will be followed by a presentation to an alumna from the classes of 1933-1965 at the Alumnae Luncheon on April 30. For information on how to nominate a fellow Tolog for this honor, visit fsha. org/alumnae and scroll down for Alumnae Links.

Distinguished Alumnae Award honoree Nikki Nepales ’07 with her sister Ella ’09, Sister Celeste and mother Janet.

Above: Tologs from the Class of 2005 reunite on the hill. Below: Not long after leaving the hill, the Class of 2010 returns as alumnae.

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alumnae news

board Profile

: Christy Mozilo Larsen ‘84

(continued from page 8)

Since then, she has traveled a lot. “I always wanted to see the world – and I have finally been able to do that.” She enrolled at Cordon Bleu Culinary School in 2003. “I come from a big Italian family and a big part of our life is cooking. My sister and I had a chocolate business when we were in junior high!” Her current venture is Lucia Grace Catering and Confections in Pasadena. She is also a director of her family foundation, which generously supports education and Catholic charities. Larsen joined the Flintridge Sacred Heart Board of Directors in 2003, and she has served as its chair for the past three years. The role of the board has changed over her time as a participant. “When I joined, it was transitioning from an advisory board to a true board of directors that provides strategic direction to the school. It went from the sisters and past parents (mostly fathers) to a strategic


heresa de Vera ‘93 returned to the hill in December to speak to current Tologs during the Amnesty International Assembly. De Vera now sits in a wheelchair and speaks haltingly as a result of a severe asthma attack she experienced during her junior year at Loyola Marymount University, one that sent her into cardiorespiratory arrest and a three-month coma. Today, de Vera is the holder of a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s degree in theology, and serves on the City of Los Angeles’ Commission on Disabilities. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa appointed her to the position in 2005. “As a typical college student, it never crossed my mind that I would be confined to a wheelchair. I


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mix – current and past parents, alumnae and friends of the school,” she says. “It has been a conscious decision to make up the membership with various professionals who bring a range of strengths and areas of knowledge. “I’ve also seen a change in how the school is managed,” Larsen adds. “It is more of a professional business effort that is forward thinking, strategic and works as a symbiotic team. The way we educate the girls hasn’t changed – we are still focused on providing a collegepreparatory education, truly preparing our students for a life of faith, integrity and truth. And nurturing the whole girl remains a priority. How it differs is the board now has a more global view, with a focus on the direction and sustainability of the school, leaving the day-to-day management to the professional staff.” Larsen will soon end her tenure on the

honestly thought that my life was over,” she said. “Boy, was I wrong. Life only began on a different path and on a more meaningful level.” De Vera spoke about her joy at being able to serve the community — she also serves on the Long Beach Disabled Resource Center’s Board of Directors and is the event chair for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life in Eagle Rock — and encouraged students to evaluate what they can give back. “I realize that I may not be able to walk or speak like your everyday person, or even hold a cup of water without it shaking — but in the long run, somewhere, I will hold someone’s heart and I will make a difference,” de Vera said.

Board of Directors. She says she will miss having the ability to help guide the school she loves so much, and will miss working so closely with Sr. Carolyn and members of the board. But her influence will continue through the 2010-2015 strategic plan that she oversaw, as well as through the Mozilo Family Foundation Scholarship Endowment. She and her family will continue to influence the lives of generations of young women who will benefit from her family’s support. “Christy has brought a sharp focus, energy and insightfulness to her work as board chair,” says Sr. Carolyn McCormack, O.P., FSHA President. “Her sense of humor, as well as her passion for Flintridge Sacred Heart, has been a gift to us. I know I can always call her for her opinion and count on her continued involvement, even as she is finally freed from all of the committee meetings she has attended these past eight years!”

alumnae news

career day at fsha


wenty-three local alumnae from the Classes of 1971 through 2004 answered the call in February to participate in Career Day, an opportunity for alumnae to share their post-FSHA journey with the young ladies of the junior and senior classes. The afternoon started with a luncheon for the alumnae, followed by a whirlwind afternoon of talking with students. Alumnae were assigned to panels organized by industry, and they addressed groups of 50 students at three 25-minute sessions during the afternoon. Students listened intently to the not-so-straight career paths of our alumnae and then had an opportunity to ask questions, addressing their interests and concerns.

A heartfelt thank-you to our participants: Paula Capriccio Orlandini ‘71 Deborah Gangi-Hall ‘73 Kim Avila ‘84 Jacqueline C. Pons-Bunney, Esq. ‘84 Elizabeth D’Amico ‘86 Mari-Tere Alvarez, Ph.D. ‘87 Juli Goodwin Roginson ‘87 Ellen Dooley ‘04 Erin McGann Maloney ‘89 Annette Ricchiazzi Blain ‘90 Jennifer Ricchiazzi Richard ‘92 Erin Schmidt, RN ‘93

Shelly Wenker Schroth ‘94 Kristi Gibbs ‘95 Sarah Sima McCann ‘96 Gloria Diaz Ventura ‘96 Kendra Davis Britton ‘97 Sarah Dooley, Esq. ‘98 Christina Rizzo-Lester ‘98 Brandy Middleton ‘00 Molly Weber, Esq. ‘00 Meghan McKenna ‘01 Paulina Murrietta ‘04

Above: Science panel members Christina Rizzo-Lester ’98, Kim Avila ’84, Kristi Gibbs ’95, Erin Schmidt ’93 and Elizabeth D’Amico ’86 shared experiences with current Tologs. Inset: Sarah Huerta ’12 gets career advice from Brandy Middleton ’00 of the business and legal panel; Annette Ricchiazzi Blain ’90, Jennifer Ricchiazzi Richard ‘92, Kendra Davis Britton ’97, Paulina Murrietta ’04 and Juli Goodwin Roginson ’87 talk to students about careers in entertainment and fashion.

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alumnae news

donor Profile

: anne and Keith Sharp


arlier this spring, Anne Sharp was driving daughter Katie ’11 up to campus when the two took note of the various signs dotting the hill, which are intended to guide first-time visitors to the right place. But Katie had a different take of the signage: It represents the strength of the Tolog spirit. “They are there to tell everyone that this is our hill,” Katie said, according to her father, Keith. “What a great example of how strong and positive Katie feels about FSHA. It is like her second home,” he adds. Despite no direct connections to Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy when it came time to choose a high school for their eldest daughter, Keith and Anne knew that they wanted an institution with a strong Christian foundation. When they brought Katie to visit the campus, they found exactly what they were looking for and more. “We instantly fell in love with FSHA. The feeling of hospitality, the sense of welcoming, the strong Dominican tradition, the vibrancy of the campus – all caused us to feel an immediate connection, a sense of belonging,” he says. In fact, by the time Emily ’13 was applying to high school in 2009, she really only had one choice in mind. “After hearing about FSHA from Katie for two years and attending numerous events on the hill, she too felt like part of the family,” Keith says. The overwhelmingly positive experiences that both girls have had made supporting FSHA and its mission an obvious choice for the Sharps. Starting with FSHA’s 75th anniversary year – just before Katie started as a freshman – Anne and Keith have provided support to many events, including GALA as Patrons for the past three years and the golf tournament for two. According to Keith, an attorney, it’s the least they can do. He touts Katie’s experience on LIFE and Emily’s proclivity

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Anne and Keith Sharp want others to have the same positive experiences that their daughters Katie ’11 and Emily ’13 have had on the hill.

for volleyball and dance as options that all FSHA students should have – now and in the future. “We envision FSHA continuing as the pre-eminent choice for an all-girls high school education as the world increasingly recognizes the quality of the young women who have experienced its mission and philosophy,” he says. “We hope that those who succeed our girls can have the same positive experience and be able to realize their full potential as they navigate their formative years.” The Sharps also want future Tologs to benefit from the warm FSHA community, one which their family will continue to enjoy long after both daughters have graduated. “We have met so many wonderful people through FSHA,” Keith says. “From the administration to the faculty, parents and students, there is a sense that we are all in this together to achieve the best possible outcome for the girls.”

alumnae news

Alumna Describes Life in Botswana with Peace Corps


rom a student perspective, it was nearly impossible to understand that the young woman smiling brightly before her fellow Tologs was Annie Rose Ramos ‘04, a Peace Corps volunteer who had carried the coffin of her best friend, a victim of HIV in Botswana, in southern Africa. It was hard to relate to how Ramos had spent weeks trying to help a little boy get to a hospital so he would not have to collapse every day during his three-mile trek to school. And one could hardly believe that Ramos was more than willing to return to a place where she spent her evenings locked in a concrete house with bars over the windows. Yes, Ramos truly had endured all those things, and she returned to the hill to share these experiences on Jan. 6. Ramos was like any other involved Tolog during her time on the hill, when she ran for the cross-country team and served as Ambassador Club president. Her favorite classes were driver’s ed and English, taught by Mr. Thornton and Mr. Bernstein, respectively. She matriculated to Santa Clara University as an English major, where she was first introduced to the Peace Corps.

After a year-long process, she was accepted into the program and sent to the underdeveloped village of Mmanoko, Botswana. Initially, she was convinced she was ill-suited for this adventure and wanted to leave. “The craziest thing I had done was wear white. It was daunting. But I told myself, ‘Annie, you can’t leave after one day.’ Just make it to the end of this week,” she told FSHA students. One week became many weeks, which turned into months, as she taught life skills at the local school, including HIV prevention to kindergarteners. While Botswana is a lot cheerier than Tologs would expect, with “smiling, happy children” and the company of neighbors whom Ramos calls her family, she also had to tolerate the pain of only speaking to her mother for “10 seconds through a bad connection” once per week, exacerbating the loneliness she felt so many miles from home. A student who became her closest friend, Katherine, died from HIV. While most children in Mmanoko had never seen someone who was not African and were too afraid to speak to Ramos in the first

Alumna Annie Rose Ramos ’04 feels at home with her students in Mmanoko, Botswana, after initially feeling it wasn’t the place for her. (Photo courtesy of A. Ramos)

four months, Katherine was “the first to smile at me, the first to speak to me, the first to hold my hand,” said Ramos. Yet Ramos stood merrily amongst her fellow Tologs, aiming to broaden their cultural horizons, inform them about HIV and, most significantly, to inspire them to make a change. “She was brilliant. She really showed that anyone can make a difference, and that you don’t have to wait until you’re old to do it,” said freshman Sammy Dier. She advised students to persevere and have a good work ethic, and emphasized that anyone can be a Peace Corps volunteer, noting that she herself was not “the strongest student, not a girl genius” while on the hill. Ramos took her graduate school entrance exams in South Africa last June, and hopes to study journalism or law to further help the people she met in Botswana. In mid-February, she returned to Mmanoko, where she will seek to incorporate a music program and develop a playground at the elementary school. Laura Allen ’11 Veritas Shield editor

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in memory

In Memory The Alumnae Relations Office was recently informed of the passing of the following alumnae. Please keep these Tologs and their families in your thoughts and prayers.

Marjorie Fricke Ahern ‘41 Joan Des Jardins Beck ‘43 Legh Rivers McCarty ’50 Patricia (Mickey) Linder Rowe ’67

and Kristin Zieman ’08. For 20 years, Bill served as a member of Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy’s Advisory Committee. He and Sue were honored at FSHA’s 75th Anniversary celebration.

William S. Huston 1927 - 2011 Once again, our Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy community mourns the passing of a dear and generous benefactor. Bill Huston died on Wednesday, March 9, 2011. Bill and Sue, his wife of 56 years, had been actively involved as parents on the hill. Four of their daughters – Helen ‘77, Mary ’81, Jean ‘88 and Elizabeth ’90 – are graduates of FSHA, as well as granddaughters Heidi Zieman ’02


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Deeply committed to passing on a legacy of quality Catholic education to future generations, Bill Huston devoted much of his time, talent and resources to ensuring that children within the Archdiocese of Los Angeles who otherwise might not be able to afford it would have the opportunity to attend a Catholic school. Together with former mayor Richard Riordan, Bill founded the Catholic Education Foundation, which continues to provide significant resources for many inner-city Catholic schools. Flintridge Sacred Heart extends our deepest sympathy and prayers to Sue Huston and all of Bill’s family. May this good man rest in peace.

: Nancy Power faculty Profile

Environmentalism in the Classroom and Beyond


en years ago, Nancy Power joined the faculty at Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy and has been making it a greener place ever since. In addition to teaching most of the school’s biology classes (and starting the AP Environmental Science program), she also serves as moderator to the Science & Environmental Club and spearheaded the Eco Garden located across from the Administration Building. Power brought an impressive background with her to FSHA: a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Virginia; a master’s degree in sustainable agriculture from Cal Poly Pomona; and graduate studies at Fuller Seminary, the University of Oklahoma, Eastern College and Philadelphia College of Bible (now known as Philadelphia Biblical University). She was also featured in an October 2010 article in the Whittier Daily News, discussing her use of solar panels on her roof at home and growing her own vegetables.

Eco gardener Nancy Power with sophomores Elizabeth Rojas, Daelyn Moon, Jacqueline Parkinson and Margaret Lee.

Q. What inspired your sense of environmentalism? A. I grew up in a beautiful neighborhood in Pennsylvania in which the developer left the big forest trees intact, along with three acres of woods with a creek meandering through in the middle of the neighborhood. We were expected to play outdoors when we were young; we were not allowed to bring friends in the house unless it was raining outside. Every season brought its own beauty and fun activities, from swimming in the summer to jumping into piles of raked leaves in fall to sledding in winter. I also spent a good bit of every summer at the Jersey Shore, playing in the white sand of Long Beach Island. Q. What creative teaching methods do you use in your classroom? A. We sing songs about biology – some of which come from science song books and some that I’ve written, but the best ones have been written by bio students for extra credit over the years. The students also design and do their own experiments. This school year, all the bio students investigated whether “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” (it doesn’t) and whether eating chocolate causes zits. They also create 3-D models of cells and DNA, using any materials they choose. I am always blown away by their creativity and excellence on the models. (This year, we had one DNA model made of wine corks and another of seashells; no model earned less than an A, and I am not an easy grader!) We also do hands-on simulations. Q. Of all the activities the Science and Environmental Club has done, which is your favorite and why? A. I loved the global warming song competition last year. The songs were so brilliant that we chose more than one winner, and we put two of the songs on YouTube. (Check them out at I was also very proud of the club the year they chose to donate $1,500 to environmental organizations. Most of that money was earned by the hard work of collecting recyclable beverage containers. Q. What is your teaching philosophy? A. My main goal is to get the students to think in a disciplined way, as well as to communicate clearly and with detail. I hate the “glazed look” and I don’t think the students are learning when they have it, so I try to keep them engaged. I encourage the students to ask good questions, and I am willing to let them take me on tangents sometimes – as long as they have to do with biology. I try to get the students to make connections from what we are learning to things they are already familiar with, either directly or through analogies. I am deliberate about the culture I create in my classroom – one that respects each person, acknowledges their strengths and addresses any weakness as a problem to be solved, not a personality flaw. I don’t consider any question to be “dumb,” so as to create an atmosphere where students are free to inquire about how the world works. I make it clear that science is an ongoing process, not just a body of knowledge. The fun is in the discovery!

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FLINTRIDGE SACRED HEART ACADEMY 440 St. Katherine Drive La Cañada Flintridge, California 91011

Parents of Alumnae: If your daughter no longer maintains a permanent address at your home, please notify the Alumnae Office of her new mailing address. Phone: 626.685.8400 Email:

‘Evita!’ Cast Shines Senior Kelsey Shaw brought the audience to its feet with her portrayal of the title character Evita! during the school’s production of the musical in November 2010.

Senior Katie Polley also gave a heartrending performance as Juan Perón’s dismissed mistress in her solo, “Another Suitcase in Another Hall.”

Shaw’s portrayal of Eva Duarte, the smalltown girl who climbed her way to the top of 1940s Argentine society to ultimately become the spiritual leader of her people, was both powerful and touching.

The magnificent supporting cast showcased the acting, singing and dancing of more than 25 FSHA students, who gave life and depth to the people of Argentina.

Musicians Amy Lee ’11, Jessy Reed ’11 and Tracy Zhang ’12 played with the professional orchestra hired for the show. Professional actors played the roles of Che, Perón and Magaldi. “It was a stunning show and it paid great tribute to its creator, Andrew Lloyd Webber,” said Principal Sister Celeste Botello.

Left: Kelsey Shaw’s Eva Perón sings “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina.” Above: Shaw as Eva, Miguel Cardenas as Juan Perón and Israel Cortez as Che, with the ensemble in the singing of “A New Argentina.”

View from the Top 2011 Spring Magazine  

Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy's magazine for alumnae, parents past and present, donors and friends of the school