Page 1





WHAT’S IN THIS ISSUE? School Snapshots 2

Family Spotlight 3

Focus on Faculty 4

Campus Guests 5

A Message from the Head of School M

y first year at Seven Hills was filled with so many defining moments—it is remarkable to think I am just beginning year two! The summer socials, Welcome Back BBQ, and opening days of school set the tone for a year of connection and discovery. From these early events to my summer travels accompanying our 8th grade graduates to Japan, I have enjoyed getting to know our community, watching our faculty in action, connecting with students, learning about the beloved Seven Hills traditions, and creating some new ones together.

Focus on Students 6

Community Life 8

Oh, the Places They’ll Go! 12

Alumni News 14

2015-2016 Annual Report 16


Carolyn Cruz, Barbara Eaton, Riki Gibson, John King Photography, Olga Larner, Adam Lechner, Mary Murphy, Kathleen McNamara, Rhys Miller and Seven Hills faculty

Building community was a unifying school theme in 2015-2016. We approached this theme from a myriad of directions, including the introduction of monthly All Community meetings for the faculty, staff, and administration. As we built a consistent vision and shared our professional practice in meetings, we learned together and became an even more empathetic community of learners (page 4). We also instituted monthly K-8 assemblies where we resurrected our school song, Homeward Bound, written by Marta Keen and adapted for Seven Hills by newly retired Assistant to the Head of School Patricia Thomas. In my first year as Head of School, I was committed to getting to know what makes Seven Hills unique. What stood out most to me was the school’s ability to stay true to our whole child approach while meeting students where they are in their respective journeys. Observing the progression from one grade to the next, I was also struck by the school’s thoughtful approach to building student skills and confidence while simultaneously challenging and preparing them for the rigors of high school and beyond (page 12).

Favorite Read Alouds

WRITERS Carolyn Cruz, Riki Gibson,

Dan Murphy, Amy Walters, Shoshana Ziblatt


975 North San Carlos Drive Walnut Creek, CA 94598 (925) 933-0666



I Want My Hat Back by JON KLASSEN (PreK-K)

Rosie Revere, Engineer by ANDREA BEATY (K-3)



Besides shadowing our own students, part of my method of really getting to know Seven Hills involved visiting many of our local high schools, public and private, to hear about our students’ progress and to see first-hand what defining characteristics comprise a Seven Hills graduate. What I heard consistently from registrars and admissions directors, as well as heads of school, is the following: Seven Hills students understand their jobs as students, understand the importance of building relationships with their teachers, and are successful students, citizens, and leaders in their respective communities. They come equipped with the necessary skills to be cognitively available for learning in our environments, and many of the Seven Hills students are our superstars! My job this year was to simply watch, learn, and begin to build on the school’s many strengths including the strong community that I was so fortunate to inherit. The strength of the community shone through its philanthropic commitment, and I am so grateful for the generosity of Seven Hills families—present and past. We continue to maintain more than 96 percent parent participation in the Annual Fund, grow our endowment, and achieve recordbreaking numbers at the auction (where I proudly performed with our newly formed faculty band!). This year, we also received a generous gift enabling us to develop a comprehensive K-8 science curriculum (page 25). You can read more about our generous community in the Annual Report and Honor Roll of Donors (page 18). I hope you enjoy the highlights from our year together—the learning, the discovery, the exploration, and the joy. I know I have. Gratefully,

Kathleen McNamara, Head of School

From Her Night Stand

Traveling with Pomegranates


Between the World and Me by TA-NEHISI COATES

The Essential Conversation


MISSION STATEMENT The Seven Hills School is a learning community with the mission to develop the intellect, engage the spirit, and foster respect for, and responsibility to, our world.





Seven Hills students


acres of


eBooks available in our new

Digital Library offered to Seven Hills students, faculty, and staff


total philanthropic dollars contributed by the Seven Hills community 8th grade students attained national recognition for excellent performance on the (veinticuatro) National Spanish Examinations— including one perfect score!



Read Across America


representing 281 families

meticulously maintained Seven Hills campus

minutes read during

pounds of student-collected waste kept out of the landfill—including food, liquids, markers, and cardboard lunch trays

2 new international summer travel opportunities for our students to Costa Rica and France

2,500 zip ties

used by our underwater robotics team to design, build, and test remotelyoperated vehicles

pieces of student artwork displayed during Evening of the Arts

96% parent participation in the Annual Fund

FAMILY SPOTLIGHT What More Could You Want? A Conversation with the Helton Family For Stan and Sarah Helton, Seven Hills was a natural progression. Their daughters attended a co-op preschool where they were involved parents. And yet, as they reviewed the various kindergarten options, there was a lot to consider. They were passionate about giving their children the best possible educational foundation—one that would open doors and shape their future. At the same time they were also committed to having one stay-at-home parent— a role they had traded off over the years. Once they visited the school, there was no hesitation, despite the financial sacrifices it would require. “Our priority was never just academics; raising good people and good citizens was just as important. This is why, when we found Seven Hills, we never looked back,” says Sarah. Now, nine years later, their eldest daughter, Hanako, has just started high school. Happy that three of her Seven Hills peers are accompanying her to College Prep, she is excited about the adventure ahead, including fresh academic challenges and opportunities to forge new friendships. Her first taste of high school began in August when she learned to navigate BART—her new commute to school—to attend cross country practice. When Hanako was in 5th grade she discovered her love of math. While she had always been a strong math student, it took that special teacher, Alison Wash, to turn her natural interest into something that brought true joy. She now does math for fun. According to Sarah, “It is these moments at Seven Hills that truly highlight what we love so much about the school. They demonstrate not just what our children are learning, but what they are learning about themselves.” Stan is quick to point out that though his two daughters are very different, Seven Hills has been a blessing for them both. The quality of the teachers continues to impress both Sarah and Stan and is one of the things they feel truly sets the school apart. “They are constantly improving and fine-tuning their curriculum and how they teach. They really get to know each and every student,” says Stan. He adds, “At the end of each year we’d reflect back on what a great a year it had been and that it couldn’t get any better. And, then it would.”

With their younger daughter Leila now in 6th grade, Stan and Sarah are happy to have a few more years at Seven Hills. As a family, they are active at the school. Stan, currently the stay-at-home parent, is omnipresent—helping out in the classroom, driving on field trips, and serving as room parent. Sarah has done her share of volunteer work as well and in this way, they model their family value of service and give back to the school. As they reflect on their children’s educational journey, Stan and Sarah are quick to point out that no single event defines their daughters’ time at Seven Hills but rather it is the cumulative impact of the many experiences. As Stan put it, “It is the day-to-day that shapes them and fosters the confidence and curiosity that drives their desire to learn. What more could you want for your children?”


FOCUS ON FACULTY The Power of Shared Experience While students enjoyed the final days of summer, the entire Seven Hills faculty and staff assembled to kick off the academic year by dreaming big. As every adult on campus is considered an educator who can offer valuable insight, teams of faculty, staff, specialists, administrators, maintenance, and tech were tasked with answering the challenging yet simple prompt, “How might we think more creatively about education at Seven Hills School? What if…” Within minutes, the room went from quiet to bustling as ideas flowed and Post-It notes filled with possibilities. Equipped with poster boards, markers, glue, rulers, pipe cleaners, and cardboard boxes, the groups then worked together to construct visual representations of the single idea they were most enthusiastic about exploring further. “This exercise was a clear example of how collaboration can generate ideas that would never surface with the more traditional model of siloed planning and thinking,” says Rhys Miller, Director of Teaching and Learning, “This was an opportunity to step outside the box in a way that brought the community together and simulated the type of creative thinking we encourage with our students.” Building on this momentum, Seven Hills educators continued to share ideas and work together throughout the year to deepen their roles as educators that included:

• monthly All Community meetings with “share-outs” about new curriculum ideas and professional development experiences;

• monthly committee meetings to discuss school priorities like green initiatives, cultural competency, and safety;

• Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) to allow teachers time to collaborate on chosen subject areas like mindfulness, differentiation, and inquiry;

school-wide cultural competency work initiated with the help of esteemed consultant Robert Greene from Stephen Jones Consulting; and

• shutting down the entire school for a day so that every member of the Seven Hills

professional community could attend the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) annual conference in San Francisco—a highlight of the year. Reflecting on the NAIS conference, Head of School Kathleen McNamara said, “It was important for us to go together as a school. We each learned something new to bring back, were reminded that we are doing many great things at Seven Hills, and shared in the moving keynote speech by Bryan Stevenson. The many conversations Stevenson’s remarks inspired throughout the spring brought us together with a renewed sense of purpose and responsibility for how we contribute to the development of the next generation.”


What if? At their annual retreat in October, the Board of Trustees, like the faculty and staff, created a visual representation when prompted with the question “How might we think more creatively about education at Seven Hills? What if…”

CAMPUS GUESTS MEETING THE RED SCARF GIRL After reading the extraordinary memoir, Red Scarf Girl, Middle School students and faculty had the opportunity to sit down with the book’s author Ji-li Jiang who shared her personal experience as a teenager during the tumultuous Cultural Revolution in China.

LIBRARY TIME WITH THE DOGS Reading dogs from the Animal Rescue Foundation’s (ARF’s) Pet Hug Pack visited the library once a week throughout the year to read with our ECE through 3rd graders. Creating a comfortable and supportive environment, the Pet Hug Pack dogs are patient partners as our youngest students work to improve their reading skills.

JOINING THE HOUR OF CODE Working on programming challenges in the library, Seven Hills students participated in Hour of Code, a celebration of computer science education around the globe. With help from computer programming experts from Accenture Consulting and Seven Hills parent and trustee John Gingrich, students practiced coding and designed games— they even made a banana piano!

HAVING FUN WHILE SAVING THE PLANET What happens when you watch a juggler, unicyclist, and comedian talk about the environment? Lots of fun while learning how to save the planet! Lower School students enjoyed an interactive assembly from EarthCapades and found out simple things everyone can do to reduce, reuse, recycle, and respect the Earth.

PARENT LECTURE SERIES BRINGS STANDOUT SPEAKERS Providing an insider’s take on the making of Pixar’s blockbuster Inside Out, Dacher Keltner, PhD, a leading psychologist on emotions at the University of California at Berkeley and consultant on the film, explained the importance of emotions in childhood development and how they play-out in the movies’ five featured characters—Anger, Disgust, Fear, Sadness, and Joy.

Speaking to a sold-out crowd, cofounder of Challenge Success and senior lecturer at Stanford University, Denise Pope, PhD, shared researchbased strategies from her recent book Overloaded and Underprepared. Pope helped parents and educators better prepare students—mentally, emotionally, and academically—to stay balanced and fulfilled in school and life.


FOCUS ON STUDENTS Students Leading the Way Long before children begin formal education, they have learned to make sense of the world around them through experimentation, observation, and tinkering. When a meticulously-constructed tower of blocks tumbles to the ground, they have learned—through doing—that gravity is a force to be reckoned with. These early lessons are lasting because they are relevant, experiential, and inquiry-based. This way of learning is at the core of the Seven Hills curriculum. Lessons are intentionally crafted to fuel natural curiosity so that learning becomes an adventure and educators are guides in the discovery process. The school’s hallmark approach touches every Seven Hills student in developmentally appropriate ways. Some lessons and projects are thoroughly researched, planned, and tested in advance; others evolve in response to student-driven inquiry. Highlights from 2015-2016 include: • Discovering migrating monarchs on a field trip, Kindergartners launched a year-long inquiry project where students researched, read, observed, and learned answers to student-generated wonderings about butterflies. • 4th and 5th graders enhanced their curiosity, creativity, and passion by developing prototypes to address real-world problems and practical needs at the first annual Invention and Innovation Convention. • Students tested their engineering skills while designing, building, and programming robots in the library and competed in the school’s first annual Robot Wars competition. • 8th grade science students were challenged to take an entire cookie recipe and scale it down to make a single cookie to emphasize the importance of measurement, precision, and significant digits in chemistry. Student ingenuity is leading the way at Seven Hills—a driving force both in and out of the classroom.

The “Root” of the Matter While digging in the sandbox, a small group of students in Rainbow discovered a root. Their excitement was contagious as other students joined in the fun of digging, asking questions, and offering predictions. “Why is it here?” they asked, “Where does it go?” And so began a deep dive into a three-week, student-inquiry inspired unit on roots. Together, they explored, touched, and observed the many types of trees and roots around campus. They also took a closer look at roots in the classroom; demonstrated how a root works with a straw and water, observed the roots of indoor plants with a magnifying glass and a measuring stick, expanded the classroom collection of root and plant-themed books and puzzles, and hosted a horticulturalist. Deep learning and fun was had by all in their search for the root of the matter.


FOCUS ON STUDENTS Who Stole the Mug? Middle School students had a serious mystery to unravel—Mr. E.B.’s #1 Boss mug had gone missing and it was up to them to find it! The suspect left several critical clues—a footprint and a coffee-drip trail. Students took on the roles of crime scene technician, scribe, analyst, and detective as they explored the “crime scene,” measured the footprints, and took note of any other evidence that would help identify the suspect. It’s a scientific and mathematical fact that a person’s foot is approximately 15 percent of their height. Given the heights of all the suspects, the students used their math skills to figure out which of the suspects height and foot length would reveal the 15 percent ratio match. They used the skills of taking measurements, unit conversion, percentages, ratios, and teamwork to solve the mystery. The students greeted this lesson with enthusiasm and eagerness. This scientific investigation allowed the math to happen naturally—real-world application at its best.

Sand Castles, Sea Life, and Design Bringing a new twist to a treasured tradition, the 1st grade field trip to Baker Beach turned sand castle building into a solid lesson on engineering design standards. Before the trip, students working in teams used rulers, pencils, and their imaginations to sketch sand castle designs. They practiced these designs in the sandbox at school and after each build, they would modify their plans, problem-solve, and learned the art of compromise. At the beach, the students brought their blueprints and also improvised when they found new real-world materials to improve their designs. There was also enough time to enjoy the sea life—touching real sea stars, anemones, rock crabs, barnacles, and many other animals. Incorporating a multi-day lesson in engineering with the annual beach field trip is an example of Seven Hills dynamic, hands-on curriculum.



Paix, Paz, 平和名, Peace To deliver a message of hope in the aftermath of the devastating Paris attacks in November, Middle School French teacher Christiane Brinkerhoff shared a youth-inspired presentation with her students that spoke to the unifying message of peace, regardless of national origin, language, or ethnicity. Little did she know how this presentation would unleash a deep desire within her students to “do something” to express their own feelings of hope and unity in the face of tragedy. And so began a student-initiated art project that included both the French and Spanish classes, as well as the Japanese exchange students who were serendipitously visiting at the time. Beautiful and heartfelt messages of peace in French, Spanish, Japanese, and English were put on display throughout the Middle School, prompting many meaningful conversations and honoring those who were most directly impacted by the event.


Practicing the Socratic method to deepen learning in 5th grade.

Tackling math stations at Grandparents & VIP Day.

Cultivating Gratitude Cultivating an “attitude of gratitude” was a natural way for Seven Hills to expand its work in student social and emotional development this year. Kicking off the year by adding “Be Grateful” to the school creed, these “Seven Values for Seven Hills” remind students to be respectful, responsible, honest, caring, positive, mindful, and now, to be grateful.

Ships ahoy! Design skills on display at the 4th grade Boat Float.

Jumping for joy during Jump Rope for Heart.

Fun and laughter for ECE students at Grasshopper Day.

At the onset of the holiday season, gratitude trees started popping up around campus. Everyone—students, adults, and visitors— were invited to take a moment to share their feelings of gratitude, creating a beautiful reminder to pause and reflect. Other gratitude activities emerged throughout the year, especially in all-community events. Whether celebrating the 24-years of service of retiring Assistant to the Head of School Patricia Thomas; practicing our school song at all-school assemblies; or thanking volunteers at the year-end appreciation brunch, gratitude was front and center for students and parents alike. With inspiration from international songwriter Nimo Patel’s internet hit “Grateful,” Seven Hills produced its own version with student performers. The gratitude video quickly became a highlight of the year. Sharing the video on his own Facebook page, Patel wrote, “Amazingness!… Many bows from the heart to the students, teachers, and parents for taking time out of your busy schedules to shine your creative and heart-felt light in such a way to plant seeds of love and gratitude!!” Lower School art students creatively share their gratitude.



Learning in Nature The annual trip to Yosemite is a transformational experience for many Seven Hills 5th graders. For some, it is the longest time they have spent away from home (five days!), and for others it is their first truly immersive outdoor experience. In addition to getting used to going without the comforts of home, adjusting to the quiet sounds of nature, and sharing space with their classmates, students took part in ample academic lessons, from reflective writing to hands-on science and conservation activities.

Choreographing the 8th grade production of Fame.

For the first time, teachers added three service-learning projects to the trip. Working together with NatureBridge, Seven Hills students conducted scientific investigations, determining the water quality of streams, recording animal sightings, and gathering “MOOP” or “matter out of place.” A huge inspiration for students was the fact that their observations and data was recorded and used by real scientists to protect the park. Lasting bonds were formed through tangible lessons-learned coupled with a new-found confidence—the result of five days spent embracing the unknown in the great outdoors.


Stacking Pumpkins in Rainbow.

Pulling together at Engage the Spirit.

Celebrating MLK Day with Martin’s Big Words.

Parent volunteers getting into the spirit at the Halloween Festival.

Enhancing Student Life Social emotional learning is a critical component of the whole child philosophy at Seven Hills. However, like many elementary schools, Seven Hills has not had a dedicated position to support our growing work in this area. We are thus thrilled to welcome our first Director of Student Life Dan Rogoff. A 22-year veteran in this area, Dan came to us from Marin Country Day School. He has served in a variety of capacities, including Dean of Students, coach, student advisor, study skills teacher, mindfulness coordinator, and social emotional learning teacher.

Rockets blast off during 6th grade Astrogation Week.

“We continue to focus on enhancing the overall student experience at Seven Hills,” says Head of School Kathleen McNamara. “We are excited about the role Dan will play in the life of the school. He brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise, as well as empathy for students, teachers, and families as we help children navigate these complicated times.” Dan will split his time between teaching in the classroom and providing support to teachers and students in the areas of social emotional learning, leadership, and athletics. He will work to help us broaden the scope of our buddy program, expand our service learning opportunities, deepen our mindfulness practices, assess and broaden our athletic opportunities, and will also serve as a Middle School advisor.

Exploring the Subway Caves during 6th grade Lassen trip.

He is the father of three sons, including a new Seven Hills student in the Rainbow program. Like his boys, Dan is a die-hard basketball fan, loves the San Francisco Giants, and enjoys music, theatre, and film. He and his wife, Laura Cox, are enjoying getting to know the Seven Hills community.


OH, THE PLACES THEY’LL GO! Class of 2016 Graduation

Class of 2016: High School Destinations Congratulations to our most recent graduates! Julia Allen, Northgate Giovanna Baldacci, Carondelet Amaya Berkeley, Carondelet Alex Booth, Bentley School Lauren Breach, The Athenian School Ethan Buckley, De La Salle Ryan Chan, San Ramon Valley Austin Chew, College Preparatory School Anthony Clerici, Bishop O’Dowd Andrew Copeland, Bentley School Jack Copeland, Bentley School Jonathan Copeland, Bentley School Aidan Davis, Armijo High School Andrew Dawson, Bentley School Ryan DeVries, Bentley School Casey Dow, San Ramon Valley Olivia Ducharme, Las Lomas Robert Finkel, Bentley School August Gingrich, De La Salle Jacob Glasky, College Preparatory School

Julia Grullon, College Preparatory School Michael Hahn, Bentley School Kelsey Hawkins, Carondelet Hanako Helton, College Preparatory School Grace Hostelley, San Ramon Valley Natalie Ionescu, Carondelet Armaan Johal, Campolindo Isabella Jose, Carondelet Cameron Katz, De La Salle Taylor Lai, Northgate Lauren Longstreet, Carondelet Elle Maraccini, Northgate Oluwadamilare Olatunji, De La Salle Jackson Penney, De La Salle Aidan Roberts, Northgate Jessee Rodriguez Renfro, De La Salle Max Sandberg, Bentley School Max Schwab, Bentley School Sebastien Scott, San Ramon Valley Alison Worswick, Carondelet

“All of the teachers at Seven Hills have the same qualities: kind, helpful, hardworking, forgiving, and loving. They want to help students develop to the best of their abilities—to stretch academically, emotionally, and socially.” – Natalie Ionescu ’16 12

Class of 2012 College Destinations Seven Hills students from the Class of 2012 are now in colleges and universities throughout the United States. MIDWEST


Loyola University, Chicago Michigan State University Purdue University University of Illinois University of Indiana University of Kansas

Boston University (2) Bowdoin College Bucknell University Cornell University New York University University of Vermont

The Class of 2012 Returns for Senior Send-Off


Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo Cal State, Monterey Bay Diablo Valley College Lewis and Clark College Pacific University Saddleback College Saint Mary’s College San Diego State University UC Santa Barbara University of Colorado, Boulder University of Oregon University of Portland University of Puget Sound University of Southern California University of Washington (2)


Baylor University Catholic University of America Elon University Johns Hopkins University The Citadel College University of Alabama (2) University of Miami

We welcomed back the Class of 2012 to congratulate them on their recent high school graduation and wish them well as they prepare for their next adventure. More than 30 alumni and a large group of alumni parents attended, sharing stories about high school and catching up on college and gap year destinations. We look forward to staying in touch!


ALUMNI NEWS Connecting with Alumni Last year’s alumni events brought together graduates spanning several decades. We caught up with alumni locally and in New York, and look forward to visiting other cities in the future. Many thanks to our faculty-led Alumni Council for staying in touch with our alumni.

ANNIE MCKENNA ’06 Harvard University and Seven Hills graduate Annie McKenna ’06 is passionate about her work to resolve some of the most pressing disparities in world health. As a senior associate at Global Health Strategies in New York City, Annie helps ensure the smooth and efficient development and delivery of health products, technologies, and information worldwide. Most recently her work has focused on the development of HIV prevention products and on polio eradication efforts. As she continues to tackle global health issues, Annie says, “Seven Hills supported me as I figured out what I wanted to do and be.”




Head of School Kathleen McNamara and members of the alumni team hosted a reception in Manhattan, getting to know some of our East Coast alumni while attending a CASE-NAIS conference.


Seven Hills trustee Seiyonne Suriyakumar ’02 invited local alumni to meet Head of School Kathleen McNamara to talk about their Seven Hills experience.



The annual Seven Hills Alumni Happy Hour continues to grow in popularity with nearly 30 alumni plus faculty and staff in attendance.


Whitney Livermore’s ’00 pursuit of a career in education was influenced by the role models she had while attending Seven Hills. Earning a teaching credential from the University of San Francisco, Whitney now works at The Thacher School in Southern California. More than just a history teacher, Whitney also coaches the girls’ varsity basketball team and serves as a freshman dorm head. Whitney attended Williams College where she studied Chinese. In addition to her busy career as a teacher, she keeps up with her Mandarin language skills and makes a point to stay connected with Seven Hills by attending alumni events and making a gift back to the school each year.

DID YOU KNOW? Two Seven Hills alumni have joined the

Board of Trustees. Julie Anne Springman Wickes ’98 and Seiyonne Suriyakumar ’02 became trustees in 2015 and bring a wealth of skills and first-hand knowledge of the school. Working for Dodge and Cox in San Francisco as an investment communications manager, Julie Anne lives in Danville with her

ALUMNI NEWS BRYCE PINKOS ’99 Southern California was a launching pad for Bryce Pinkos ’99 as he made a name for himself producing documentaries and working on some of the industry’s best-known studio lots and with media companies such as Warner Brothers and Discovery. Bryce reflects, “Seven Hills teachers and alumni helped stoke my creativity, solidified my values, and encouraged me to explore.” With a degree in journalism and photography from the University of Southern California, Bryce recently returned to the Bay Area to put his creativity to use as photo editor at Lucasfilm, including work on the new Star Wars film.

Connecting with Alumni (CONTINUED)

MARC YERGOVICH ’88 Returning to campus for the first time in 20 years, Marc Yergovich ’88 attended the alumni reunion last spring with his sister Sara ’04—one of five Yergovich siblings to graduate from Seven Hills. With an eye for design and a degree in International Relations and Urban Planning from the University of Kansas, Marc held leadership roles for both Williams-Sonoma and Polo Ralph Lauren before beginning his tenure at Apple in 2008. Putting his team building and operations experience to work, Marc has been instrumental in various physical plant expansion projects for the tech giant, including new Apple stores and the expansion of the company’s Cupertino campus.

husband, Tanner, and one-year-old son, George. Following in the footsteps of his dad, Suri, who also served as a Seven Hills trustee from 2000 to 2007, Seiyonne is a graduate of the University of Southern California and is a vice president at Mobitor Corporation in Walnut Creek. To learn more about the Board of Trustees at Seven Hills, visit



The Class of 2012 gathered at the annual Senior Send-Off event before they headed off for their next adventure after high school.


Seven Hills graduates from the Class of 2016 were officially welcomed into the alumni ranks at the annual Alumni Welcome Luncheon.



With 75 graduates in attendance, the Alumni Reunion was a fun-filled afternoon of touring campus as well as reconnecting and reminiscing with classmates. Alumni enjoyed meeting Kathleen McNamara while also catching up with their favorite teachers.


2015-2016 ANNUAL REPORT A Message from the Board Chair When my wife Melissa and I discovered Seven Hills almost 10 years ago, we were struck by its unique, mission-driven learning environment. Personal attention from dedicated teachers combined with deep hands-on learning equip Seven Hills students with the skills to question, innovate, and engage with the world around them. Through our own Seven Hills journey, we’ve come to cherish not just the student experience, but being part of a community that is an extension of our family and our values. As you read this issue of Connections and the Annual Report that follows, I encourage you to pause and reflect on your own family’s Seven Hills journey. We took to heart Kathleen McNamara’s message about gratitude this past year. There is so much to be grateful for here at Seven Hills, including our remarkable and generous community. Nothing we’ve accomplished or aspire to achieve would be possible without the dedication and commitment of all who give enthusiastically of their time and resources. I have enjoyed my first year of partnership with Kathleen McNamara in my role as Board Chair, and I am excited about what we will achieve together with the guidance and insight of our returning and new trustees. As we embark on year two with Kathleen at the helm, Seven Hills is poised for a bright future while remaining grounded in the work set forth in our strategic roadmap—Approach 2020. Throughout the 2016-2017 school year, the Board will continue our work in the following areas: • engaging in generative and strategic conversations about the future of the school; • careful fiduciary planning as stewards of the school’s resources; • furthering the work we began last year in understanding and acquiring the cultural competency skills needed to prepare our students for their future; and • communicating more broadly about the work and role of the Board. We look forward to another rewarding year. Thank you once again for your continued commitment to Seven Hills. As always, I encourage you to get involved, stay connected, contribute generously, and enjoy being part of this wonderful learning community. Warmly,

Sameer Hilal Chair, Board of Trustees


2016-2017 Board of Trustees BOARD MEMBERS Jamil Akoni Pat Blake Jodee Brydges Laura Furstenthal John Gingrich Khira Griscavage Julie Gutzwiller Sameer Hilal, Chair Fred Hughes Matt Janopaul Mackenzie Lesher Patrick Lin Matt Macomber Eizabeth Mahler Gina Morris Annette O’Donnell-Butner Julie Anne Springman Wickes ’98 Seiyonne Suriyakumar ’02 Nancy Wallace Kirsten Young



Seven Hills is committed to enhancing the student experience at every turn while keeping tuition as low as possible. The Board of Trustees helps manage the school’s finances with the goal of supporting mission-driven growth and fiscal strength.

$8,634,852 86.6% 530,616 5.3% 209,642 2.1% 595,514 6.0%

Total $9,970,624

The overall operating budget in 20152016 was more than $9.5 million. Faculty and staff salaries and benefits continued to account for nearly 70 percent of the overall operating expenses, while tuition provided nearly 87 percent of the overall operating revenue. Second to tuition, the Annual Fund was the largest source of operating revenue.

OPERATING EXPENSES1 Salaries and Benefits $6,682,899 69.8% Instructional 1,822,861 19.0% Tuition Assistance 526,777 5.5% General and Administrative 434,170 4.5% Fundraising 104,234 1.1%

These numbers reflect pre-audited financials. Audit will be available upon request as of November 2016.

Total $9,570,941 Excludes non-cash depreciation $946,278


$3,988,516 Endowment $31,844,353 Total Liabilities and Net Assets

2015-2016 GIVING SUMMARY $530,616

Annual Giving Major Gifts/Initiatives Endowment

$300,000 $213,791

Auction $209,642 TOTAL



2015-2016 HONOR ROLL OF DONORS Supporting Joyful Learning THANK YOU. With the support of its many philanthropic partners, Seven Hills provides an inspiring educational experience for its students. On the pages that follow, we recognize the generosity of our community. The school’s enduring mission, perpetuated by our generous supporters, is more vibrant than ever. Together, we have created a place where every child finds joy in learning and graduates prepared for academic success and a life of meaningful contribution. It all starts here. Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of listings in this report. If we have made an error or omission, we sincerely apologize, and please bring it to the attention of the Development Office at (925) 933-0666.

Annual Fund Donors

Kelly and Carrie Barlow

We are incredibly grateful for the commitment of the Seven Hills community for their annual gifts in support of the academic and financial health of the school. Thoughtful and enthusiastic participation by parents, grandparents, alumni and their parents, faculty, staff, and friends of the school strengthen our community. The more than 400 individuals and organizations listed below contributed to the Annual Fund between July 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016. Thank you for your loyal support.

Ramin and Patricia Behmand The Benevity Community Impact Fund Kevin Booth Bret and Sarah Cameto Michael and Kimberly Carpenter Lucien and Lauren Cazenave Steve and Melanie Clerici

John and Laura Furstenthal Sameer and Melissa Hilal Frederick Hughes, Jr. Fred and Noel Hughes Jim and Shannon Lanzone Corby and Heather Stead

Giving Champs $5,000 - $9,999

Sebastian and Renee Bea Ryan and Nicole Brown


Scott and Lori Keith Neil and Patrice Konigsberg William Kwok and Vivian Tan Conrad and Selena Lai David Fitzgerald and Haywon Lieh

raviG Inc.

Eric and Stephanie Ebel

Patrick and Darlet Lin

Peter Read

Omid and Ellie Fard

Kathleen Manning

Peter and Julie Gutzwiller

Timothy and Jennifer Ruane

David Fitzgerald and Haywon Lieh

Richard and Patricia Marcogliese

Robert Ishii and Nancy Wallace Foundation

Lee and Candace Fleming

Kathleen McNamara and Jihad Mirza

Larry and Cybille Scott

Amber DeSilva

Matthew and Marissa Janopaul

David DeSilva

Wendy Jordan

Scott Dickey and Ana Recio

Janet Katari

Wells Fargo Community Support Campaign

Justin Chew and Charlotty Pan

George and Stephanie Buhalis

Byongkook Kang and Helen Yoon

William and Liesa Dutra

Anonymous (2) David and Emily Breach

Matthew and Melissa Jose

Diablo Foods

Leadership Circle Patrick and Alison Blake

Charles and Lainie Johnson

Matthew and Kamin Macomber

Christopher and Annette Butner


Brett and Kymberly Johnson

Michael and Shirley Coke Alex Copeland and Eileen Beall Daniel and Lindsay Delaney

Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund Ravikanth Ganapavarapu John Gingrich and Christine Currie John and Khira Griscavage

Barbara Gronowski Stephen and Katy Gronowski Benjamin and Joanna Grossman

Pamela Keith and Elizabeth Mahler Mitch Kumagai and Deborah Podberesky

John and Barbara Toth

Wally and Kirsten Young

Headmaster’s Circle

Ari and Sheryl Lauer

$2,500 - $4,999

Stephen and Mackenzie Lesher

Anonymous (4)

Eric and Megan Lindberg

Simon Ashiku and Annette Chen

Michael and Katherine Gandy Kenneth and Jeanifer Grullon

Robert Mehranfar and Jodee Brydges Jay and Julie Meissner

Jay and Genevieve Gudebski

Carlton and Ericka Nunez

Scot and Liann Hagey

Stephen and Maggie Oetgen

Blake Haley and Christine Deakin

John and Christine Oh

Michael Han and Annie Hahn

Parnassus Investments

Barry and Sue Hoch

David and Sylvia Pearlstein

James and Cara Hollis

Shami and Lori Patel

Michelle Place Jeffrey and Jessica Pozzi Yi Shi and Shangjie Zuo Simerjit Singh and Harmol Raikhy Brad and Amy Skepner Dan and Sibhan Stokes Brad Surak and Claudia Furtado Jeffrey and Michaela Traynor Tanner Wickes and Julie Anne Springman Wickes ’98


$1,000 - $2,499 Sameer and Stella Advani Jonathan and Amanda Ambrose Anonymous (2)

Amir Axelrod and Sherry Wang-Axelrod

Peter and Precilla Clancy

Bank of America Matching Gifts Program

Thomas and Julie Ducharme

Barclays Wealth Americas

Gabe Echeverria and Chandra Lynn

Terrence and Camolin Becker Thomas and Gloria Beckett BlackRock Matching Gift Program

David and Gail Contreras

*Visionaries ($20,000 to $29,999)

Google Employee Giving

Tara Buttles

Karan and Ella Gupta

Steven and Vanessa Capelli

Ashley Hayden

Raymond and Kelly Castillo

Tunghua and Yuyu Huang

Wesley and Jennifer Chan

*Hill’s Angels ($30,000+)

Bruce and Barbara Goodman John and Jennifer Graham

Ronald and Fannie Chan

How can you make a difference?

General Electric Foundation

Ilya Borovikov and Victoria Holcomb

CDO, Inc.

Giving Levels

*Leadership Circle ($10,000 to $19,999) *Giving Champs ($5,000 to $9,999) *Headmaster’s Circle ($2,500 to $4,999)

Gene and Valerie Howard

Benefactors ($1,000 to $2,499) Friends (Up to $999)

IBM Matching Grants Program

*We celebrate our donors who support Seven Hills with vitally important annual leadership gifts of $2,500 and above with special recognition. Your loyal and generous support provides a strong foundation for a thriving Annual Fund.

Thomas and Danielle Kahl Kevin and Michaela Katari Peter and Tara Khoury Charles Killian and Michelle Watts Killian Bruce Ledesma and Cheryl Sendaydiego Christopher and Danette Leighton Norman and Mo Livermore

John and Deborah Steinbuch

Jamil and Cheryl Akoni

Steve and Janna Berry

Annie Allen

Nick and Clare Bisho

Gregory and Victoria Longstreet

Cynthia Stephenson- Catterton

Robert Allen

Brian and Judy Blond

Margaret McCormick

Edward and Devra Struzenberg

Kenneth and Risa Allison

Kellen Bothwell

Russell and Crystal Alpert

Brent and Christiane Brinkerhoff

Jason and Nicole Ambrose

Dennis and Veronica Brinkmann

Kenneth and Regina Ambrose

Norma Bristol/ Instrumental Music Program

Miklos and Kathryn Melczer Milton and Edith Melczer Momentary Images LLC Amara Morrison Richard and Carol Northing Scott and Paige Radell Jeremy and Jennifer Rich Jonathan and Jennifer Rodde Timothy and Katharine Rudd Jay Saoud and Kristina Kramer Jonathan and Ali Singh Stephen and Katherine Stahl

John and Diane Suciu Christopher and Carrie Swany John Sween and Lisa Barnett Sween United Way of the Bay Area

Anonymous (7) Rodolfo and Virginia Arias

Scott and Wendy Buckley

Kris and Jan Worswick

Pedro Babiak and Laura Lippow

Jonathan and Kristin Butler

Farhad Zamani and Georgina Jensen

Valerie Baccay

Paula Cameto

Gerry Bakalian and Deborah Mata-Bakalian

Robert and Susan Canchola

Gene and Alicia Bakkum

John and Sharon Carroll

James and Lea Baldacci Gretchen Bartzen

David and Karen Chadbourne

Christopher and Karen Begg

Michael Chamberlain and Kathleen Jiménez

David and Joelle Weckerle


Up to $999 Robert and Mary Ann Adamski Nick Adamson and Carisa Harris Adamson

Dan and Carol Busack Mr. and Mrs. Bill W. Butner


2015-2016 Faculty and Staff Donors

Charles Schwab

Sarah Finkel ’14

Roopam and Kajal Chowdhury

James and Marcie Fitzsimmons

The Clorox Company Foundation

Deborah Frerk

Seven Hills faculty and staff demonstrate meaningful commitment to the school each and every day. In addition to their contributions in the classroom, 100 percent of our faculty and staff supported the Annual Fund in 2015-2016.

Kelley Cochran

Nick and Annie Gartner

William and Cynthia Cogswell

Sadegh and Narguess Ghorban

Casey Conroy and Diana Herrera-Conroy

Kimberly Gilmore

Eric and Patricia Copeland

Mark and Naomi Glasky

Tanveer Alibhai

Lisa Lindgren

Annie Allen

Shauna Maraccini

Virginia Arias

Alisha Marsh

Lori Auffhammer

Marianne McBride

Valerie Baccay

Phil McFann

Karen Begg

Kathleen McNamara

Clare Bisho

Rhys Miller

Kellen Bothwell

Dan Murphy

Christiane Brinkerhoff

Mary Murphy

Norma Bristol

Carolyn Nelson

Susan Canchola

Tina Ory

Karen Chadbourne

Amy Cupples John and L. Adrienne Cupples Dan and Rebecca Cushing Cary and Kathleen Dalziel Brad and Cora Davidson Davidson Educational Therapy & Consulting

John and Jacki Gingrich David Godsoe and Renee Ramig Matti and Karen Gold Edward Goldberg and Larisa Genin Susanne Goldman Doug and Susan Greenberg Marc and Wendy Greenberg

Jason and Lisa Davis

Warren and Peggy Gutzwiller

Heidi Plumb

Chris and Elizabeth Dawson

Russell and Jane Hall

Michael Chamberlain

Megan Prieto

Stephanie Chiang

Renee Ramig

Megan Delgado

Kelley Cochran

Mark Roquet

Cynthia Cogswell

Michael Sandberg

Carolyn Cruz

Lauren Sanders

Santosh and Eva Marie Dhanalal

Rebecca Cushing

Julie Scarpelli

Imran and Regula Dhedhi

William and Kim Hecht

Cora Davidson

Carol Shafer

Dolby Match Program

Stan and Sarah Helton

Jason Davis

Matt Shargel

Todd and Christine Dow

Gerry Dunn-Gerardin

Deborah Shipherd

Barbara Eaton

Generra Singleton

Steve Gerardin and Gerry Dunn-Gerardin

Greg Gholson and Katherine Henderson

Scott Espinosa-Brown

Stephanie Sproul

Mark and Kristine Earle

Deborah Frerk

Katherine Stahl

Sofia Earle ’14

Matti Gold

Patricia Thomas

Susanne Goldman

Cassidy Thompson

Richard and Barbara Eaton

Heather Harrington

Patty Turetzky

Danilo Ebias

Katherine Henderson

Ken and Diana El-Sherif

Michael Henderson

Linden Van Wert-Weisberg

Kim Hughes

Beth Wadsworth

Gina Hurley

Amy Walters

Scott and Katherine Espinosa-Brown

Janis Jones

Alison Wash

Bo Espinosa-Setchko ’94

Nancy Lane

Mari Weiss

Rebecca Larson

Joanie Wills

Charlotte and Gerald Estes

Adam Lechner ’87

Kirsten Woods

Kurt and Sheryl Ettinger

Ponce Yambao

Paul and Laurel Evans

Michelle Levie Sarah Lewis


Carolyn Cruz

Joe and Beth Furstenthal

Scott and Deborah DeVries

Scott Engstrom

Bejan and Torrey Farahbakhsh

Amber Haskett Haskett Law Firm, P.C. Jim and Hali Hausmann Patricia Hausmann Trevor and Oanh Hawkins

Robert and Barbara Jaspar

David Koenig and Audrey Ardale-Koenig

Matthew and Nicole Jeffers

Emily Koster

Guy and Susan Henshaw

Thomas and Pauline Jeffers

Chalis Kuba

Joel Herr and Brooke Vermeer

Sumer and Navneet Johal

Troy and Nancy Lane

Paul Ho

Donald and Maureen Johansen

Paul Hostelley and Lisa Wallace Gabriel and Stephanie Hough

Matthew and Natalie Johns Lawrence and Janis Jones

Patrick and Kimberly Hughes

Craig and Linda Joseph

Gina Hurley

Perry and Melanie Jurow

Charles Hurst and Joanne Supersad

Kaiser Permanente Community Giving Matching Gift Program

Jason and Anna Husk Insperity Community Involvement Giving Program Liviu and Ana Ionescu

Katherine Jue

Jerry and Carolina Katz John Kittredge Nathan Kochly and Jennifer Davis

Stephen Koster Shanna Lai Ross and Olga Larner Brent and Rebecca Larson Adam ’87 and Shannon Lechner Cornel and Alexandra Lee David and Michelle Levie Sarah Lewis Jeff and Lisa Lindgren Whitney Livermore ’00 Harsha Madannavar and Deepa Bangalore Timothy and Jennifer Manibusan

Matthew and Shauna Maraccini

Camile Pennix

Michael and Alisha Marsh

Michael and Natalie Perry

Arlyne Martinez

John and Hannah Pirone

Robert and Caroline Maruska

Heidi Plumb

Marianne McBride

Joseph Pollock and Rebecca Demorest

John and Lindsay McCormick

Toby Pontin and Jennifer Wilson

James McDonnell and Linda Margulies

Gregory and Liana Pope

Philip McFann

Nickolas and Megan Prieto

Carlos and Ana Laura Melara

Ralph Raulli

Neil and Pam Menzies

Thomas and Linda Reiser

Jim and Roberta Merrion John and Christine Merrion Neil Meyer and Stephanie Chiang Daniel Michael and Lillian Leong Bill and Kristy Miller Neil and Rhys Miller

Ingrid Ray

Tony and Lynne Reynolds Edgar and Mimi Rodriguez Phillip and Teri Rogers

Mark and Katherine Roquet

Laurel Seivold

Michael Rubiano

Matt and Kristine Shargel

Andy and Carol Shafer

Jonathan Russell and Rachael Applegate

Keith and Deborah Shipherd

Colin Safreed and Xochitl Gonzalez Safreed

Alexander Silva ’04

Matthew Sager and Amanda Ashton-Sager Michael and Stephanie Sandberg

Generra Singleton Steven and Susie Sovik Stephanie Sproul Seiyonne Suriyakumar ’02

Lauren Sanders Julie Scarpelli

Kristel Svansjo

Edward Scherr and Shelly Pozzi Michaele-Ann Schmitcke

Gautama and Priyanka Swamy

Steven Schwab

Carlo Tamburrino and Paulette DeFalco

Paul and Carol Scott

Adam Tanaka ’05

Alfred and

Kenneth and Patricia Thomas Cassidy Thompson Daniel Tiraschi and Heather Harrington

2015-2016 Annual Fund Class Captains A special thanks to our Class Captains who helped us achieve another impressive year of Annual Fund support. With 96 percent parent participation, our parent community continues to lead the way with their philanthropic contributions. We are especially grateful for our enthusiastic and creative Annual Fund Parent Chair Casey Conroy who motivated us all.

Rainbow Sarah Cameto John Toth

Red Barn Ryan Brown

K Nick Gartner Joanna Grossman 1st Casey Conroy Marissa Janopaul

Abe, Zack and Lizzie Mintz and Catherine Cutler

Patricia Turetzky Harpreet and Anudeep Ubhi

George and Gisele Monteverdi

2nd Nick Gartner Matt Macomber

Andrew and Susan Ulvenes

Alan and Clare Moore

3rd Vicky Holcomb

Jason and Gina Morris

Linden Van Wert-Weisberg

4th Lindsay McCormick

Langdon and Elizabeth Morris

Geoffrey and Beth Wadsworth

Henri and Lorena Moudi

Robert and Amy Walters

Louis and Amanda Moynihan

Alison Wash

Daniel Murphy

Murray and Mari Weiss

Mary Murphy, Carolyn, and Sarah Moore

Steven and Linda Wight

Carolyn Nelson Calin and Anca Niculescu Stacy Norman

Dilantha and Manoja Wijesuriya Robinson and Joanie Wills

Eniola and Aderonke Olatunji

John Woll ’14

Douglas Spear and Isabelle Ord ’86

Kirsten Woods

Jon and Tina Ory Erica Pacheco

Ponce and Lourdes Yambao

Jason Peiser ’99

Glen and Elisa Yeung

Gregory and Claudine Penney

Yih Family Foundation

5th Kirsten Young 6th Annette O’Donnell-Butner Stephanie Sandberg 7th Pat Hughes Nancy Wallace 8th Melissa Jose Jan Worswick

Lawrence and Pearl Wong Workday

Roy and Cathy Yih † Deceased


The Seven Hills endowment continues to grow, bolstered by the 2014-2015 initiative to honor retired Head of School William H. Miller. As the school looks to its future, the endowment remains a priority providing funds for strategic goals and initiatives. As a source of permanent income, the endowment provides for the financial health of the school and ensures that future generations benefit from the rich and inspiring education we provide.

Endowment Donors

As of June 30, 2016, the school’s total endowment was nearly $4 million. A special thanks to those listed below for making an endowment gift in 2015-2016. Together with past supporters, you have created an enduring legacy. Thank you.

Kathleen McNamara and Jihad Mirza Robert Mehranfar and Jodee Brydges

Jeffrey and Jessica Pozzi Edgar and Mimi Rodriguez Timothy and Jennifer Ruane

Jay and Julie Meissner

Michael and Stephanie Sandberg

Jerry and Deborah Mellin

Julie Scarpelli

Neil and Pamela Menzies

Larry and Cybille Scott

Daniel Michael and Lillian Leong

Brad and Amy Skepner

Neil and Rhys Miller

Corby and Heather Stead

Bill and Kristy Miller Gideon Murey Brian and Patricia Napper Stephen and Maggie Oetgen

Stephanie Sproul

Brooks and Michelle Stratmore John Sween and Lisa Barnett Sween

Nick Adamson and Carisa Harris Adamson

The Clorox Company Foundation

John Gingrich and Christine Currie

Matthew and Melissa Jose

Jamil and Cheryl Akoni

Kelley Cochran

Mark and Naomi Glasky

Janet Katari

Ralph Pais and Gayl Huston

Jason and Nicole Ambrose

Michael and Shirley Coke

Jonathan and Amanda Ambrose

Alex Copeland and Eileen Beall

David Godsoe and Renee Ramig

Kevin and Michaela Katari

Gregory and Claudine Penney

Larry and Deveney Totten

Jerome and Jane Perez

Robert and Amy Walters

Eric and Patricia Copeland

Marc and Wendy Greenberg

Jerry and Carolina Katz


Pamela Keith and Elizabeth Mahler

Michael and Ellen Peterson

Wells Fargo Community Support Campaign

Charles Killian and Michelle Watts Killian

John and Hannah Pirone


Toby Pontin and Jennifer Wilson

Kris and Jan Worswick

Rodolfo and Virginia Arias James and Lea Baldacci Sebastian and Renee Bea Christopher and Karen Begg Ramin and Patricia Behmand

Carl Corrigan and Sharon Kidd Chris and Elizabeth Dawson David DeSilva Santosh and Eva Marie Dhanalal

John and Khira Griscavage Thor and Christine Grossen Jay and Genevieve Gudebski Peter and Julie Gutzwiller

Neil and Patrice Konigsberg

Imran and Regula Dhedhi Todd and Christine Dow

Stan and Sarah Helton

Nancy Dowdney

The Hennessy Foundation

Steve and Janna Berry

Thomas and Julie Ducharme

Kevin and Elaine Hennessy

Stephen and Mackenzie Lesher

Sameer and Melissa Hilal

Sarah Lewis

Dewey Horton and Ann Hatanaka

Carla Lo Coco ’92

Patrick and Alison Blake

Richard and Barbara Eaton

David and Emily Breach

Eric and Stephanie Ebel

Tunghua and Yuyu Huang

Ryan and Nicole Brown

Scott and Katherine Espinosa-Brown

Fred and Noel Hughes

Christopher and Annette Butner

Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund

Patrick and Kimberly Hughes

Gregory and Victoria Longstreet Matthew and Kamin Macomber Kathleen Manning

Deborah Frerk

Matthew and Shauna Maraccini

Michael and Kimberly Carpenter

John and Laura Furstenthal

Matthew and Natalie Johns

Richard and Patricia Marcogliese


Michael and Katherine Gandy

Brett and Kymberly Johnson

Marianne McBride

Stuart Gilliam and Rhonda Hughes

Charles and Lainie Johnson

Justin Chew and Charlotty Pan Steve and Melanie Clerici

Wally and Kirsten Young

Bruce Ledesma and Cheryl Sendaydiego

Matthew and Marissa Janopaul

Robert and Susan Canchola

Jeffrey Totten ’05

Adam ’87 and Shannon Lechner

Kevin Moylan and Rania Berkeley BlackRock Matching Gift Program

The Walt Disney Company Foundation

Ross and Olga Larner

Michael Han and Annie Hahn

The Benevity Community Impact Fund


McKesson Foundation, Inc.

John and Lindsay McCormick Anne McKenna ’06

JULIAN RETTGER FUND FOR EMOTIONAL WELL-BEING Julian Rettger graduated from Seven Hills in 2003. His parents established Julian’s Fund for Emotional Well-Being in 2010, to honor Julian, who passed away in June of that year. Julian’s family has raised more than $500,000 through the fund to support the social and emotional well-being of students. Seven Hills has named the library in his honor because of his early and continuing passion for books. Mary Ann Gordon Philip B. Rettger and Diane Bell-Rettger Telos Academy

New Endowed Fund Celebrates Student Life When Cybille and Larry Scott reflect on their son Sebastien’s time at Seven Hills, they talk about his amazing journey as a student and individual. While academic lessons prepared him for high school, it was his personal journey outside of the classroom that allowed Sebastien to become a confident, articulate, and empathetic young man who benefited from the school’s whole-child approach. The Scott family decided to take the opportunity of Sebastien’s graduation to honor the school, their son, and the thoughtful leadership of Head of 4th8th Grade Scott Espinosa-Brown by establishing The Scott Espinosa-Brown Endowed Fund for Student Life, Leadership, and Service. The new fund will support growth outside of the classroom in the areas of student life, leadership, and service. It will enhance and expand a variety of programs including our advisory program, service learning, athletics, and more. In addition to their own gift, Cybille and Larry encouraged other 8th grade families to make an endowment gift and honor a teacher who made a significant impact on their child’s Seven Hills journey. The result was nearly $70,000 raised for the endowment from the Class of 2016. At the 8th Grade Parent Dinner in June, families were thanked for their generosity and participation in this initiative.

Celebrating our Parents Parents of the Class of 2016 gathered for a new end-of-year Seven Hills tradition— the 8th Grade Parent Dinner. As our 8th graders prepared for graduation, we hosted their parents at this celebratory event, recognizing them for their time, commitment, and dedication to Seven Hills over the years.



Named Endowment Funds Over the years, individual donors and their families have established named endowment funds that continue to provide for the school. These gifts are invested in perpetuity with a percentage of the interest earnings used each year for priorities such as faculty professional development, program innovation, and tuition assistance. A special thanks to those who have established named funds at Seven Hills. The Barlow Family Endowed Fund

Joseph Family Minority Scholarship Fund

The Brown Family Endowed Fund The Butner Family Endowed Fund

Julian Rettger Fund for Emotional Well-Being

Deborah Jansen General Endowment Fund

Karen Malin Endowment for Professional Development

The Hennessy Family Endowed Scholarship Fund

Matthews Music Scholarship

The Hilal Family Endowed Fund Jim Clark Former Trustees Endowment Fund

The Scott Espinosa-Brown Endowed Fund for Student Life, Leadership, and Service The William H. Miller Endowment Fund

Named endowment funds are a special way to create a permanent legacy for your family and can be established with a minimum gift of $50,000. If you are interested in learning more about named funds at Seven Hills, please contact Director of Development Amy Walters at or (925) 933-0666.


This campus-wide science initiative will provide our students with varied opportunities to learn, play, watch, observe, contemplate, and problem-solve — all while “doing science.”

Science Everywhere Thanks to Generous Gift News of more gardens and a chicken coop spread quickly, generating school-wide excitement. “Let’s have a vote to decide which chickens we want!” declared one Lower School student. The Kids’ Green Committee quickly took action and organized a school-wide student vote to decide on the most desirable and fitting breeds, and this fall Seven Hills welcomed 11 new chickens to campus with more on the way. The chicken coop and gardens are part of a multi-year and comprehensive science initiative for ECE–8th grade students, made possible by the support of a generous Seven Hills family who made a $300,000 gift to kick-start this effort. The initiative, which is aligned with the school’s strategic plan, Approach 2020, will expand the study of the natural sciences as well as the STEAM program, creating opportunities for all Seven Hills students to “do science” just about anywhere on campus. What does this look like; what does it mean? • Mobile tinker carts full of supplies and equipment will travel in and out of classrooms, making science mobile. From laser cutters to 3-D printers, our students will build, design, create, and innovate freed from location, subject area, and grade level. • We’ve expanded the science lab in the Middle School to create an outdoor space especially equipped for STEAM. The new space will give students from all grades a destination to collaborate, build, and experiment. • To fully harness the power of the great outdoors, we will add more gardens to campus. Students will plant vegetables and fruit trees, care for chickens, learn about gardening, composting, and more. While the initiative will unfold over several years, campus changes are already underway. The school has hired Lower School Science Coordinator Stephanie Chiang whose responsibilities include shepherding this effort together with Middle School science teachers Matt Shargel and Stephanie Hough and Director of Teaching and Learning Rhys Miller.

To support this effort, the community also raised more than $100,000 during “Raise Your Paddle” at the 2016 auction to establish an endowment for science that will help with yearly funding and support future growth. “If you dream it, you can build it” will become the mantra at Seven Hills, and thanks to our generous donors, this campus-wide science initiative will provide our students with varied opportunities to learn, play, watch, observe, contemplate, and problem-solve—all while “doing science.”


Hills Angels in Perpetuity Jeffrey and Heidi Abramson

Peter and Isabelle Op de Beeck

Bahman and Mardjan Taheripour

Ralph Pais and Gayl Huston

Ronald and Robyn Taylor

Charles and Nancy Deschane

Kenneth and Jeanifer Grullon

Benjamin and Judy Kronick

Amber DeSilva

Stuart and Anne Knowles

Kelly and Carrie Barlow

David DeSilva

John and Wendy Hammergren

Jim and Shannon Lanzone

Gretchen Bartzen

Michael Han and Annie Hahn

David and Traci Lardner

Brad and Shiva Berman

Scott and Deborah DeVries

Parke and Victoria Boneysteele

Robert Dolinko and Laurie Bronson

Kevin Booth

Todd and Christine Dow

Terence Heywood and Pamela Lesoganich- Heywood

David and Emily Breach

Joseph and Holly Eiden

David and Kim Bridges

Irwin and Vivian Eskanos

Robert† and Alice Bridges Foundation

Ira and Pamela Finch

Sandra Gallo

Adam and Carol Chase

W. Philip and June Gardner

Shrikant and Ira Garde

Michael and Maria Walton

Joseph and Toni Petite

Dennis and Bonnie Wells

Scott Pipo and Gloria Pickhover

Tom and Marla Williams

Michelle Place

Douglas and Joyce Wing

Frederick Hughes, Jr.

Jeffrey and Jennifer Loomis

Joseph and Rosalia Polizzi

Bruce Woods and Nancy Frary-Woods

Fred and Noel Hughes

Ingrid Ray

David and Connie Lowe

Christine Riley

Glen and Elisa Yeung

James and Laura Hulburd

James and Shari Lucas

Roy and Cathy Yih

Robert Ishii and Nancy Wallace

Geoffrey and Lesleen Riley

John Lyngaas and Linda Noel

Susan Rogers

Mark and Shawn Young

Paul and Deborah Jansen

Andrew and Jinny Rudd

Wally and Kirsten Young

Steve and Beth Marini

Thomas and Mary Anne Jorde

Mark and Mindee Mastrov

Sameer and Melissa Hilal Diane Horton Abraham and Deanna Hsieh

Matthew and Melissa Jose

John Gingrich and Christine Currie

Joseph and Odette Kardek

Ronald and Susan Codd

Anthony Giordano and Theresa Klinger

Ross and Amy Kari

Stephen Cohn and Rose Anne Critchfield

Charles and Alexis Glavin

Michael and Shirley Coke

Kent and Diana Godfrey Bruce and Barbara Goodman

Christopher Trinkus

Eric and Amy Peterson

Janet Katari Kevin and Michaela Katari Jerry and Carolina Katz Mitchell and Karen Kay

Ari and Sheryl Lauer Henry and Jennifer Leingang Michael and Sherrie Littlejohn Norman and Mo Livermore

Pat Matthews and Patti Paulson Scott and Tomi Matthews Stephen and Nancy McCarthy Wendy McDermott James McDonnell and Linda Margulies Kevin McGuirk Daniel and Marina Miller Bill and Kristy Miller James and Dorothy Mills

Shami and Lori Patel

Larry and Deveney Totten Richard and Karen Walker

Sheldon Kahn and Sarah Liron

James and Kathy Clark

Charles and Adelaide Park Jerome and Jane Perez

Kimberly Gilmore

Chung-Cheng and Jen-Kuei Chen

Elizabeth Solomon

Suri and Rushika Suriyakumar

Bob Kliger

Bob Gallo

Brad and Amy Skepner

Stephen and Maggie Oetgen

Thor and Christine Grossen

John† and Susan Chapman

Philip Simon and Terry Neben

Steven and Rochelle Klein

Steve and Celeste Danglade

James and Françoise Cervantes

Brian and Patricia Napper

Patrick and Teresa Sullivan

Mary Dalsin-Mills

John and Laura Furstenthal

William and Frances Myers

David and Sally Nosal

Susan Alonso

Mark Fosbury and Kristin Castagno

Murray and Christine Sheldon

Clarence and Irene Mou

Larry and Julie Kirsch

Robert Allen

Roger and Madeline Fleischmann

Paul and Diane Morton

Ronald and Caryn Suber

Stephen and Katy Gronowski

Philae Carver

Brian and Michelle Sharpes

Brent and Elizabeth Nomura

Richard and Lori Green

David and Jessie Flatt

Langdon and Elizabeth Morris

George and Bonnie Kennedy

John and Debby Cunningham

Christopher and Annette Butner

Mark Shapiro and Roberta Goldberg

Corby and Heather Stead

Annie Allen

Charles Fiske and Karen Leo

Carl Shapiro

Abraham Mintz and Catherine Cutler

John and Ruth Nelson Dan and Linda Gordon

Mathew and Sarah Bakulich

Steven Schwab

Tom and Julia Miner

Subhendu Narayan and Kavitha Rao-Narayan

The Copeland Family

Brian Atwood and Lynn Edminster


In recognition of their enduring commitment to the school, we wish to honor the Hills Angel in Perpetuity donors who, over time, have contributed $25,000 or more cumulatively to the Annual Fund. Your loyal and generous support has provided for generations of Seven Hills students and faculty.

Sam Mills

Keith and Susan Wilson

Fred and Susan Safipour Edward Scherr and Shelly Pozzi

† deceased New Hills Angels Member

Ways to Make a Difference At Seven Hills, our mission calls us to build a foundation that creates a lifelong love of learning. We accomplish this goal in partnership with our extended community through three primary fundraising efforts. We invite you to join us.

Heritage Society The Heritage Society honors those donors who choose to include Seven Hills in their estate plans. Through their thoughtful endorsement, members of the Heritage Society are providing for the future of the school. Thank you for your vision and generous support. Pete Babiak and Laura Lippow Parents of Steven Babiak ’07 and Sydney Babiak ’11 Gretchen Bartzen Director of Development (1995–2012) Brad and Shiva Berman Parents of Daniela Berman ’05 Jon and Lisa Blake Parents of Adam Blake ’11 and Andrew Blake ’12 John† and Susan Chapman Parents of Chris Chapman ’03 and Emma Chapman ’05 Jim and Laura Hulburd Parents of Alanna Hulburd ’06 and Kyle Hulburd ’09 Paul and Deborah Jansen Parents of Ben Jansen ’03 and Nicholas Jansen ’05 Thomas and Mary Ann Jorde Parents of Kevin Jorde ’01 and Christopher Jorde ’03 Joel King Director of Finance and Operations (2000–2011)

Jim and Karen Malin Head of Lower School (1992–2013) Dan and Marina Miller Parents of Marshall Miller ’01 Bill and Kristy Miller Headmaster (1992–2015) Parents of Hennessy Miller ’04 and Keenan Miller ’08 Abraham Mintz and Catherine Cutler Parents of Elizabeth Mintz ’13 and Zachary Mintz ’12 Philip Rettger Parent of Julian Rettger ’03† Linden Van Wert-Weisberg Faculty member since 1975, librarian since 1976, and green ombudsman since 2015 John and Alice Villanueva Parents of Amber Villanueva ’96 and Erica Villanueva ’99 † deceased

If you have included Seven Hills in your will or trust or are interested in learning more about how to leave a legacy to Seven Hills in your estate plans, please contact Director of Development Amy Walters at or (925) 933-0666.

ANNUAL FUND The Annual Fund is the school’s cornerstone fundraising effort each and every year. The Annual Fund contributes to the school’s operating budget and thus provides essential resources above and beyond tuition. Every Seven Hills student benefits from the Annual Fund and gifts are spent in the year they are received. Gifts directly support the many things you love most about the school, from hands-on-learning opportunities to our talented faculty.

AUCTION The school’s annual auction is a fun community-building event that also raises vital funds for student programs and the endowment through auction sponsors and donors. Mark your calendars for this year’s auction, Saturday, March 18, 2017. This treasured tradition is a fantastic way to connect with other families and fund programs and projects to support teaching and learning.

ENDOWMENT Gifts to the endowment provide for the school’s long-term financial health and continued improvements. While gifts to the Annual Fund are put to use immediately, endowment gifts are invested in perpetuity with interest earnings used each year to sustain our programs and to support strategic initiatives.

How to Make a Gift There are variety ways to make a gift to the school including: Gifts of cash Appreciated securities

Bequests, real estate, or other planned gifts

Corporate matching gifts

Gifts in kind

You can make a gift online at: or by mail. Checks should be made out to “The Seven Hills School” and sent to:

The Development Office • The Seven Hills School 975 North San Carlos Drive Walnut Creek, CA 94598 To learn more about giving opportunities, please contact Director of Development Amy Walters at or (925) 933-0666.


A Rockin’ Good Time! We rocked! Upholding its reputation as “Nothing but a Good Time,” the 2016 Seven Hills rd-breaker for Rock of Ages auction was a reco transformed was Hall t Hun . Seven Hills students a kick-off with ue ven cert con ate into the ultim Slash, d. ban performance by our live faculty showed a onn Mad n eve Pitbull, The Beatles, and goers cert con y man the with up to rock along t in suppor of the and bid on some rockin’ items s. Seven Hills students and program . You came, Thank you to all who participated had another We it. ed rock you played, and you $400,000 than e mor with r yea ing record-break ly new a ards raised, including $105,000 tow oolsch of t por sup established endowment in es. wide science initiativ result of a The auction’s success was the commitment of the from rt, effo ide community-w volunteers, the ss event sponsors, donors, countle stic leadership usia enth the Board of Trustees, and ssman and Gro nna Joa irs, Cha of our Auction Copen. Rock On! Steve Lesher—you made it hap



Auction Co-Chairs Steve Lesher and Joanna Grossman Committee Carisa Harris Adamson Nicole Ambrose Amanda Ambrose Patricia Behmand Nick Bisho Nikki Brown Tara Buttles

Bret Cameto Kelly Castillo Melanie Clerici Lindsay Delaney Katherine Gandy Annie Hahn Noel Hughes Marissa Janopaul

Auction Coordinator

Patrick Lin John and Lindsay McCormick Susie Sovik

Board Liaisons John Gingrich Kirsten Young Riki Gibson

Table Sponsors RUN-DMC The Copeland Family Matthew and Marissa Janopaul The Breach and Scott Families

Spice Girls The Ambrose, Gartner, Grossman, Jose, and Lesher Families The Baldacci, Hahn, Place, Roberts, and Sandberg Families The Fleming, Griscavage, Gutzwiller, Hilal, Roberts, and Pirone Families

Raffle and Faculty Sponsors

Disneyland Resort

Jack’s Restaurant

Oakland Zoo

Sky High Sports

DPR Construction

Tina Ory

Smile Power Orthodontics

The Seven Hills Board of Trustees

Earthquake Arabians, LLC

Matthew and Marissa Janopaul

Steven and Susie Sovik

Encina Bicycle Center

Janis Jones

Parksmart Regional Parking, Inc.

Encore Gym

Zahoor Kareem and Tanveer Alibhai

Shami and Lori Patel

Sports Basement

Pear Southern Bistro

Jerry and Carolina Katz

Corby and Heather Stead

Penman Photographic Artists

Steve and Kate’s Camp

Item Donations Nick Adamson and Carisa Harris Adamson Adventure Day Camp Annie Allen Aloha Mind Math Jason and Nicole Ambrose Maximilian and Lori Auffhammer Bay Area Equine Vet Camp, LLC Beach Blanket Babylon Chris and Karen Begg Ramin and Patricia Behmand

Scott and Katherine Espinosa-Brown Exploratorium Fit 2 the Core Flaunt Boutique Flower Bowl Florist Forma Gym Fraiche Catering John and Laura Furstenthal Michael and Katherine Gandy Greg Gholson and Kathy Henderson

Pamela Keith and Elizabeth Mahler KTVU

Philz Coffee

Lafayette Park Hotel & Spa

Piatti Restaurant

Conrad and Selena Lai Nancy Lane Jim and Shannon Lanzone Lark Creek Restaurant Rebecca Larson Adam Lechner ’87

Giants Baseball Camp

Christopher and Danette Leighton

Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park

Stephen and Mackenzie Lesher

John Gingrich and Christine Currie

Lesher Center for the Arts

Golden Gate Fields

Sarah Lewis

GolfSmith International

Patrick and Darlet Lin

Ryan and Nicole Brown

Marc and Wendy Greenberg

Lindsay Wildlife Museum

Chris and Annette Butner

Greetings by the Yard, LLC

Lululemon Walnut Creek

California Shakespeare Theater

Benjamin and Joanna Grossman

Majeroni Orthodontics

Bret and Sarah Cameto

Jay and Genevieve Gudebski

Shauna Maraccini

Kim Carpenter

Peter and Julie Gutzwiller

Martinez Gun Club

McKesson Foundation

Raymond and Kelly Castillo

Michael Han and Annie Hahn


Center REPeratory Company

Harriet Plummer Aquatic School

Karen Chadbourne

Heather Harrington

Children’s Fairyland

Stan and Sarah Helton


Citro Salon

Alliant Insurance Services

Steve and Melanie Clerici

Sameer and Melissa Hilal

Farmers and Merchant Bank

Cline Cellars

RPM Mortgage

Kelley Cochran

Heart Mike and Shirley Coke John and Laura Furstenthal Nick and Annie Gartner Eric and Megan Lindberg Kathleen Manning Rob and Amy Walters

Corporate and Business Sponsors Main Stage MuscleMilk

Diamond BeneSys Administrators

Flavor Insights Pro Form Laboratories

Rock Star

Randy and Darlene Bennet, SMC Men’s Basketball Nick and Clare Bisho Patrick and Alison Blake BMW Concord Norma Bristol

Susie Canchola Canvas & Cabernet

College Nannies + Tutors Davidson & Licht

Advantage Metal Products

Jason Davis

Armanino LLP Khrista Jarvis Real Estate

Diablo Regional Arts Association

Sequoia Signs

Diablo Rock Gym

Homestead Restaurant Stephanie Hough Fred and Noel Hughes

Michelle Levie

Jim and Karen Malin Alisha Marsh Marianne McBride John and Lindsay McCormick Peggy McCormick Kathleen McNamara and Jihad Mirza Robert Mehranfar and Jodee Brydges Mike’s Bikes of Walnut Creek MoMo’s

Gina Hurley

Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa


Jason and Gina Morris

Robert Ishii and Nancy Wallace

Mountain Meadow Ranch

J. Hettinger Interiors

Peet’s Coffee & Tea

Pickett Family John and Hannah Pirone Heidi Plumb Powell’s Sweet Shoppe Megan Prieto Q-ZAR Laser Tag Gray and Brenda Reavis Red and White Fleet San Francisco Cruises Renaissance Club Sport Steve and Kristen Riter Mark Roquet Michael and Stephanie Sandberg Lauren Sanders Julie Scarpelli Larry and Cybille Scott Seven Hills Brownie Troop 33835 (2nd Grade)

Splash Swim School

Surf Air Seiyonne Suriyakumar ’02 SusieCakes Sweet Affair Bakery Tesla Walnut Creek The Dailey Method The Olde SF Creamery Co. The Seven Hills School The Spotted Cow Cassidy Thompson Treasure Island Sailing Center Harpreet and Anu Ubhi Linden Van Wert-Weisberg Beth Wadsworth Alison Wash Mari Weiss Wheel Kids Biycle Club Wally and Kirsten Young Joanie Wills Kirsten Woods

Shell Oil Company

Tanner Wickes and Julie Anne Springman Wickes ’98


Zachary’s Chicago Pizza

Matt and Kristine Shargel

Brad and Amy Skepner SkinSpirit

Save the Date!

March 18, 2017 Hunt Hall • Seven Hills

Carolyn Nelson Nordstrom Walnut Creek



The Seven Hills School 975 North San Carlos Drive Walnut Creek, CA 94598

Non Profit Org. U.S. Postage


Handled with Care

ctober 13 All Community O Parent Dinner January 15 Applications Deadline March 18 Auction

May 4 Evening of the Arts

May 5 Grandparents & VIP Day


June 8 Graduation June 10 Alumni Reunion

Fall 2016  
Fall 2016