Schools Briefs: Hurd appointed to Menlo board, Foothill alum wins prize

Schools Briefs

Former BCS president joins Menlo board

Joe Hurd, former board president of Bullis Charter School, last month joined the board of trustees at Menlo College, a four-year private school in Atherton.

“From the minute I met with (college president) Steve Weiner and (provost) Grande Lum, I was blown away with Menlo’s commitment to improving educational opportunities for diverse students,” Hurd wrote in an email announcing the move. “Entrepreneurship and innovation are at the heart of Menlo’s curriculum, and the school is a top feeder of accounting and finance talent to the big four accounting firms. I think the school’s program is a perfect match for the needs of companies here in Silicon Valley, and around the world, as the economy weathers the pandemic. Right educational foundation, right time.”

Hurd, a lawyer, noted that he previously worked with Lum in the Obama administration.

Foothill alum wins environmental prize

Former Foothill College student Maria Azhunova has won Stanford University Law School’s 2020 Bright Award for Environmental Sustainability.

The highest environmental prize given by the school, the annual award honors individuals who have dedicated their careers to improving sustainability and conservation. It comes with a $100,000 prize.

Azhunova was recognized for her work as executive director of the Baikal Buryat Center for Indigenous Cultures and director-elect of the multinational conservation collaborative The Land of the Snow Leopard Network. Her family is from the Buryat Republic in Central Asia.

“I received incredible gifts from my elders and always feel the subtle guidance of my ances-tors, both the nearest ones and those who were born hundreds of years earlier than myself,” Azhunova said in a press release. “This work has never been a job, a career or some profession for me. It is rather a way of life and the purpose of my existence.”

She has worked to preserve Buryat culture and biodiversity across a vast multinational re-gion of Central Asia – including the preservation of critically endangered snow leopards in direct cooperation with local peoples, youth education programs focused on sustaining Buryat language and traditional lifeways, and the reintroduction of an ancient indigenous Buryat cattle breed once believed to be extinct.

Azhunova will accept the award at a public lecture, panel discussion and ceremony at the Stanford University Law School on a to-be-determined date.

Mentor Tutor group offers info session

Mentor Tutor Connection is scheduled to host a volunteer information session via Zoom 10-11 a.m. Oct. 14.

Attendees can learn about volunteer opportunities to mentor high school students and tutor students in grades K-8 in Los Altos and Mountain View schools.

The programs are currently remote and will remain so until students are back in school and the school districts permit volunteers in the classroom.

All volunteers must be high school graduates.

To register for the information session, visit

For more information on Mentor Tutor Connection, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit

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