On the Town: Speakers address GCC annual foundation dinner

The new Glendale Community College Supt./President David Viar was introduced at the college foundation's annual dinner meeting.

Introductions took place over a salmon dinner prepared and served by culinary arts students in the Los Robles Culinary Arts Building last week. Borrowing the words of Gandhi, Viar said, "We must be the change we seek in the world."

Presenting the rest of the program was College Police Chief Gary Montecuollo. A 30-year veteran of the Glendale Police Department, Montecuollo has been an adjunct instructor teaching criminal justice classes at the college for 18 years. He is also a recent recipient of the Davitt Award for Outstanding Service.

Montecuollo introduced his audience to two of 16 campus police cadets, James Marchman and Christina Chung.

The college's cadet program began 18 years ago. All cadet candidates must go through a rigorous background check and have a grade-point average of 2.0 or better. Those cadets chosen are trained in first aid and CPR.

Among their duties on campus are providing traffic control and rides to classes for disabled students. Every weekend, cadets check to see if all doors are locked in every building on the main campus and Garfield campus. All cadets are planning careers in law enforcement.

Following the chief's remarks, Lisa Brooks, the foundation's executive secretary, outlined some foundation firsts as it celebrates its 30th anniversary. The first grant to help students who are military veterans was recently established. Also, $30,000 was donated by alumni from the 1960s and 1970s. Those alums had never donated to the college before.

Foundation member Paul Brodsky continued with more firsts. He announced that almost $90,000 in grants was given by the foundation. The Student Success Fund received the lion's share at $60,000.

Grant funds were raised through the GCC's annual golf tournament, last year's 85th anniversary celebration of the college's founding and from the President's Circle. Introduced in 2010, President's Circle donors contribute a minimum of $1,000 as an unrestricted gift to GCC. Membership in the President's Circle is renewable each year.

Ann Ransford, president of the board of trustees, was next up to install foundation board members, including Linda Taix-Paccone, owner of Taix Workout Studio in La Cañada. Proud husband, Fred Paccone, applauded the loudest at his wife's introduction.

First to be installed was current foundation president Mike Haney, who is in the middle of his three-year term. He reminded the audience that four past presidents were on hand — Jack Quinn, David Greenbaum, Harry Hull and immediate past president Ellyn Semler.

The evening concluded with Haney's announcement that the foundation will begin planning the college's 90th anniversary celebration in 2017. Co-chairs are welcome.


Last weekend was a no-makeup, granola and dried seaweed kind of weekend. Eight women gathered in Desert Hot Springs to "Harness [Their] Power Within." The brains behind the Women's Healing Retreat was HealWithin owner Liza Boubari.

She used her considerable skills as a hypnotherapist, massage therapist and life coach to coax each woman to reach her highest potential.

In the relaxing comfort of the Hacienda Inn & Spa, nary a soul could be found talking on a smartphone or using a laptop. It was back to the Stone Age, as each woman gave up technology to move toward breaking through old, subconscious patterns to reach their best.

Those encouraged to leave their ego, title and self-consciousness at home were, besides Boubari, a contingent from Glendale Adventist Medical Center — Elizabeth Mirzaian, Michelle Trembley and Melina Thorpe. Others were Glendale residents Catherine Yesayan and yours truly. Los Angeles resident Ashley Fondrevay also attended.

Tanis Rhines, owner of the Garden Spa'T in Glendale, was also there. Rhines is a specialist in cell and molecular genetics and is also a licensed aesthetician and certified Kundalini Yoga instructor.

She concocted an organic facial treatment for each woman. Rhines also juiced "Super Foods" for lunch. (Life without dried seaweed is no life at all.)

Boubari is looking forward to a similar Women's Healing Retreat next year. Don't miss it.


RUTH SOWBY may be reached at ruthasowby@gmail.com.

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