Al Haven had helped open a school in the San Francisco Bay Area so the prospect of overseeing a school opening in Laguna Beach was not a daunting task.
In the spring of 1967, Haven, principal of Portola Elementary School in San Bruno, was in Los Angeles for a conference and phoned Laguna Beach Unified School District Supt. William Ullum.
Ullum had made a prior trip to visit Haven, hoping to recruit him to open Top of the World Elementary.
Ullum invited Haven and Laguna Beach Unified board members to lunch with him, Haven said in a phone...