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News

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers


Ellie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Campaign yard signs are just one expenditure for candidates during election season.

Election finance filings are in, and Los Altos appears to be hosting a few financially lopsided races.

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Schools

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Bullis Charter School students wear their school spirit clothing to greet their mascot Oct. 3 in celebration of being named a National Blue Ribbon School.

Blach Intermediate, Egan Junior High and Bullis Charter schools ea...

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Community

Sports

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High running back Austin Johnson goes for a big gain after evading Los Altos High defensive tackle Phil Alameda in Friday’s game. Johnson scored two touchdowns for the Spartans.

After unveiling its wildc...

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Comment

Logan, McClatchie, Peruri for LASD board: Editorial

This is a crucial time for the Los Altos School District. Its leadership faces the challenge of balancing enrollment growth versus maintaining the small, neighborhood schools that make it a very popular district to attend. The district must also adap...

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Special Sections

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Tandava Waldon, left, manager of East West Bookstore on Castro Street in Mountain View, works with a customer. Waldon said the recently approved minimum-wage hike will have little impact on his business. “It’s not such a...

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Business

Delay Social Security? An easy way to decide

One of the most heatedly debated questions regarding Social Security is when to start.

You have the option of initiating benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. The longer you wait, the larger the monthly payment you will receive over your...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

Suzanne Monica Dimm Specht passed Tuesday, Sept. 9th at the age of 84. Sue was born on April 21, 1930 in Portland, Oregon. After graduating from the University of Oregon in with a degree in Music, Sue taught in a little town called Clatskanie, Oreg...

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Travel

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening


Courtesy of Sally Brew
North Korea is home to many monuments honoring its “Dear Leaders,” left.

In August, I traveled for 11 days with MIR Corp. to North Korea, a fascinating country that is almost completely cut off from the rest of the world. ...

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Stepping Out

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto


Courtesy of José Luis Moscovich
West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” is slated to open Friday night in Palo Alto and run through Oct. 26.

West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” (“The Troubadour”) is scheduled to open this weekend...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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Mountain View High graduate Fisher nominated for NCAA Woman of the Year


Matt Mitgang/Special to the Town Crier
Mountain View native Marilee Fisher leaves Washington University in St. Louis with the fourth-most assists in school history.

Four years after walking onto the women’s volleyball team, Marilee Fisher is walking away from Washington University in St. Louis with a diploma, a national championship and a nomination for NCAA Woman of the Year.

“It turned out better than I could have ever dreamed,” the Mountain View High graduate said of her college career.

Fisher added that “Never in a million years” would she have expected so much success. She arrived at Washington – a private school with approximately 7,300 students that boasts one of the top NCAA Division III volleyball programs in the nation – as a walk-on slated to be the third-string setter

The team’s senior starter suffered an injury prior to training camp that summer, however, leaving Fisher to compete with a returnee for the role of No. 1 setter. Fisher not only won the job, she played an integral role in the Bears’ run to the 2009 national championship. The 5-foot-8 freshman led the nation in assists per set (11.40) and was named second team All-American and NCAA Central Region Most Outstanding Player.

Fisher ranked that sensational season as one of the two highlights of her college career.

“The other was being able to work and play alongside such dedicated, passionate and hardworking teammates for the past four years,” she said. “I have made lifelong friends in them and feel very lucky to be their teammate.”

Washington didn’t nab another national title during Fisher’s time on the team, but the Bears exceeded 30 wins in each of the past three seasons. They went as far as the NCAA regionals last fall, losing to Elmhurst College in the final.

“Although we did not end up doing as well as we could have, my senior season was a great way to spend my last year of competitive volleyball – alongside great teammates,” Fisher said. “Although I received personal recognition, I would have given all of it up for our ultimate team goal – winning the national championship.”

The Mountain View native earned first team All-America honors her senior, junior and sophomore seasons. Fisher is one of only four players in Washington history to start at setter all four years, according to head coach Rich Luenemann. She totaled 4,475 assists in her career, which ranks fourth on the school’s all-time list.

“Marilee is an extraordinary setter and an even finer young woman,” Luenemann said. “She is very coachable and trained diligently to enhance her setting from both a skills and a leadership perspective.”

Those characteristics factored into Fisher’s latest honor – an NCAA Woman of the Year nomination. The list of 455 contenders across all NCAA divisions was revealed in June.

Although Fisher wasn’t among the 140 conference honorees announced Thursday who remain in contention for the award, she appreciated being nominated. Fisher said she was “surprised, excited and humbled all at once” when Washington’s sports information director called to tell her that college officials had chosen her for consideration. NCAA schools can submit the names of no more than two graduating student-athletes to their conferences for nomination.

“I did not expect to be chosen in the conference round,” Fisher said. “The University Athletic Association is revered for its academic excellence and is a Division III powerhouse in athletics. I felt incredibly humbled to have been chosen to represent such a distinguished and well-respected conference.”

Fisher surmised that her “determination, hard work and dedication to things I am passionate about led to my nomination.”

While her volleyball career at St. Louis is over, Fisher isn’t through with the sport – or the school.

After graduating in the spring with a degree in chemistry (and a 3.59 GPA), Fisher said she is returning to St. Louis next month to take a year of classes in preparation for the Graduate Record Exam. She plans to apply to graduate schools for pharmacology.

When Fisher is not studying, expect to see her setting.

“Absolutely yes!” Fisher said when asked if she plans to continue playing volleyball. “I jumped on that as soon as I could – I joined a club team in St. Louis and traveled to Louisville, Ky., to play in club nationals back in May. I look forward to playing more indoor volleyball as well as grass and sand volleyball.”

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