Taaffe family descendants recall early days of Los Altos Hills

Above photo courtesy of Pam Walatka; Below photo courtesy of the Taaffe family
Members of the Taaffe family, above, share anecdotes and photos at an Oct. 11 presentation sponsored by the Los Altos Hills History Committee. Below is a Taaffe family portrait from the 1910s.

A crowd of more than 130 people packed Los Altos Hills Town Hall Oct. 11 to hear anecdotes about what life was like when the town was the Taaffe family’s private stock and grain ranch.

During a presentation sponsored by the Los Altos Hills History Committee, three generations of the town’s founding family shared letters, photos and stories from their lives in the Hills spanning 165 years.


Local 2015 AFP honorees recognized at Los Altos History Museum lunch

Liz Nyberg/Town Crier
The Association of Fundraising Professionals honored a local organization and couple at a recent lunch. Attendees included, from left, Joe Eyre, representing the Los Altos Community Foundation; Los Altos residents Donna and John Shoemaker; and AFP representatives Amber De Buize and Karen Kwan.

The Los Altos History Museum hosted an Association of Fundraising Professionals Silicon Valley Master’s Series brown bag lunch Oct. 28.

Guests included this year’s National Philanthropy Day honorees – Outstanding Volunteer Fundraisers Donna and John Shoemaker of Los Altos and representatives from the Los Altos Community Foundation, the Outstanding Foundation Grant Maker.


Expert explains phytoplankton's effect on climate change at Rotary Club meeting


Microscopic phytoplankton in the Arctic is essential to our daily life, according to Zachary Brown, who recently earned his doctorate in environmental earth system science from Stanford University. Brown discussed “Arctic Climate Change” at the Oct. 22 Rotary Club of Los Altos meeting.

“We wouldn’t be here without (phytoplankton),” said Brown, who has trekked via foot and kayak approximately 2,300 miles from Stanford up the Pacific Coast to Gustavus, Alaska, his hometown.


State senator honors Los Altos resident as 'environmental hero'

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
State Sen. Jerry Hill, left, congratulates Los Altos resident Gary Hedden on his Environmental Leadership Champion award. Hedden has organized and participated in numerous local events that promote conservation and sustainability.

State Sen. Jerry Hill, whose 13th District includes Los Altos, honored Gary Hedden Thursday as an “environmental hero” during a coffee klatch Hill hosted at Main Street Cafe & Books in downtown Los Altos.

Hill presented Hedden with the Environmental Leadership Champion award for the Los Altos resident’s range of activities, from his work with GreenTown Los Altos to his creation of spring and fall cycling tours of the city’s historical sites.


City invites creative minds to rack their brains for bike rack competition

Courtesy of City of Los Altos
The city of Los Altos invites creative minds to brush up on their homework and submit designs for bike racks set to be installed throughout the city.

The city of Los Altos and the Public Arts Commission encourage local residents to submit ideas for an artistic bike rack competition. The deadline for submissions, through computerized or hand-drawn image, is Nov. 23.

According to commission officials, the project “seeks to add a new element of distinctive public art to city streets and provide an opportunity for the community to think creatively and imaginatively about public streetscapes.”


WomenSV educates, empowers women in abusive relationships

Liz Nyberg/Town Crier
Tony Harris, left, interviews Ruth Patrick earlier this year for the TV special “Behind Closed Doors,” which profiled Patrick’s WomenSV program. The special aired on the Investigation Discovery channel.

• Mission: Women-of-Means Escape Network Silicon Valley (WomenSV) at the Domestic Violence Intervention Collaborative addresses a gap in services for women and children in middle- to upper-income areas by providing education, training and support to escape abusive relationships and rebuild their lives.

• 2015 update: WomenSV worked with 100 clients through its helpline, weekly support groups, individual meetings and by accompanying women on appointments. The program also provided professional training for 300 emergency support providers. To spread awareness, founder Ruth Patrick conducted educational seminars and interviews for media outlets, including on Investigation Discovery’s “Behind Closed Doors.” Patrick recently acquired office space in downtown Los Altos to meet with clients in privacy.


Schools »

Read More

Sports »

Read More

People »

Read More

Special Sections »

Special Sections
Read More

Photos of Los Altos

Browse and buy photos