Fri09192014

News

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates


Nine candidates have filed to run for three open seats on the Mountain View City Council in the Nov. 4 election – none of them incumbents. The Town Crier asked them to introduce themselves to readers in the following Q&A format. We knew the...

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Schools

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects


Traci Newell/Town Crier
The Los Altos School District’s newly expanded Facilities Advisory Committee met for the first time last week. The 28-member committee’s first task is to prioritize campus improvement projects.

The Los Altos Scho...

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Community

Sports

New-look Lancers find their footing

New-look Lancers find their footing


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Jenna Adams, left, and Carly Deale attempt to bump the ball Friday night. The juniors combined for 28 kills.

This year’s St. Francis High girls volleyball team faintly resembles last season’s squad ...

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Special Sections

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
An estimated 75 supporters of higher teacher pay turned out for the Sept. 4 Mountain View Whisman School District board meeting.

Teachers, trustees and administrators are recovering from a dramatic Mountain View Whism...

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Business

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Esthetician Marjan Kashi showcases one of the treatment rooms at her new studio, Pure Serenity Skincare at Rancho Shopping Center. Kashi provides services including microdermabrasion and various light and heat energy the...

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Books

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation


During World War II, Virgilia Short Witzel, a young mother and U.S. Navy officer’s wife, grappled on the home front in Menlo Park with wartime rationing, shortages and loneliness. During the ensuing Cold War, she experienced adventure and misadventur...

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People

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

Resident of San Jose and Los Altos, California

July 21, 1931 to August 4, 2014

Born in Arimo, Idaho, to Jerald Emmett and Rebecca Henderson Nelson Christiansen. Raised in Davis and Riverside, California, with summers in Downey, Idaho, and in Loga...

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Travel

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska


Sandy Powell/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident and bird photographer Sandy Powell recently visited Homer, Alaska, to photograph Sandhill cranes, below. While there, Powell also encountered moose, left.

Los Altos resident Sandy Powell, a...

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Stepping Out

Pear puts on a pair of plays

Pear puts on a pair of plays


J. Smith/Special to the Town Crier
Dan Kapler (as Teddy) and Betsy Kruse Craig (Trish) star in Pear Avenue Theatre’s “House.”

The Pear Avenue Theatre production of two interlocking comedies by Alan Ayckbourn – “House&...

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Spiritual Life

Back to Church Sunday offers opportunity to recommit

The children in Los Altos are back to school, and I can still hear parents cheering. Summer is officially over, even if the calendar doesn’t quite think so.

Parents have attended Back to School nights to meet their children’s teachers. B...

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Magazine

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living


Courtesy of Spectrum Interior Design
In place of a more traditional fireplace, this modern living room features a linear-flame firebox that emits heat while offering a sculpturelike design element.

After traveling the world and visiting a host...

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New MVHS administrators greet students


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Dave Grissom, Mountain View High School’s new principal, addresses a group of students on campus last week.

When Mountain View High School students started school this week, they met their new principal, Dave Grissom.

Grissom, a San Diego native, assumed the position after eight-year principal Keith Moody transitioned to the role of director of the district’s Adult Education program in June.

Grissom discovered that he enjoyed interacting with youth while in college, when he coached baseball and football.

“I always saw myself doing something good for kids,” he said. “I loved (working with the students). I found my niche in life.”

Grissom began his teaching career at Santa Clara High School in 1994 and in 1998 became an administrator at Lincoln High in San Jose, eventually coming full circle back to Santa Clara High, where he served as principal for the past seven years.

“I just love being around kids – they bring such a zest for life,” he said. “I always thought I could bring a real positive change in their lives as well.”

Although he will miss the Santa Clara High community, Grissom expressed enthusiasm as he begins his tenure at Mountain View.

“I’ve never felt more welcome than I have at Mountain View,” he said. “I have met some very dynamic and great people already, and I’m really ready to start the school year.”

Rich in resources

Grissom praised the resources of the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District.

“I don’t think I’ve ever been fortunate enough to be at a school and district that offers as much for their students as this one does,” he said. “The resources they offer to their students is bar none above what I’ve seen offered before.”

As to goals and objectives for his first year on the job, Grissom listed diving into the new grading policy and implementing the new common core curriculum as priorities.

“I want to work on the grading policy to help all,” he said. “I am trying to create some transparency there.”

Grissom described himself as a “hands-on leader” who enjoys “positive relationships with kids and families.”

Grissom and his wife of 19 years, Christine, live with their sons, Ryan, 15, and Connor, 11, in San Jose. In his spare time, Grissom spends time with his boys, usually involving sports.

An admitted sports fan, Grissom plays golf and serves as an umpire for Little League games. His coaching experience in college served as a bridge to his career.

“I found a love there, and the love transferred into the classroom,” he said. “Being a teacher was the greatest job I’ve ever had, and it pushed me into the profession I am in today.”

Other new faces

Grissom’s is not the only new face on campus this year. The district hired two assistant principals at the close of the past school year: William Blair, a Mountain View High instructor, and Lynne Ewald, an administrator who worked with Grissom at Santa Clara High.

Blair taught Leadership, Broadcast Journalism, Newspaper and English for the past nine years at Mountain View High. He received the Mountain View Los Altos Teacher of the Year Award in 2009-2010 for his outstanding teaching and work with myriad student groups, including the Iwata Japanese Exchange Program, the Associated Student Body, Camp Everytown and the Link Crew. He earned his bachelor’s degree in English and psychology from Virginia Commonwealth University and his teaching credential from the University of San Diego.

Ewald joins the district from Santa Clara High, where she served as assistant principal for 12 years. Ewald was responsible for curriculum, master schedule, student activities and special programs. She has received commendations for her work as a science teacher at all levels of biology and physics. She received her undergraduate degree from Florida State University and her master’s in educational administration from San Jose State University.

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