Reflecting back on 2017, my heart is filled with gratitude for you and everyone who advocated for our kids in Mt. Diablo schools. Together we passed a strong Safe Haven resolution, so that students can concentrate on their studies instead of their fears. We held donation drives for HOPE to help homeless students, and for the food bank to feed local families and victims of the Solano fires. We painted, pruned and planted the grounds of many schools on Community Service Day. And we coordinated with city and school leaders to build safer routes to school, with bike lanes, speed signs and crosswalks.
For my family, serving our community is a core value and responsibility. Our daughters Iris and Robyn this year launched Inventors University to teach girls computer coding every Saturday for 10 weeks at the Concord Library. In May, eight girls demonstrated their final projects at the Sun Terrace Elementary Open House, and each program graduate went home with a raspberry pi computer to continue on her own. Twenty two more students attended December workshops. (Iris and Robyn's vision became a reality thanks to my husband Sandy mentoring their entrepreneurial process, to teacher Karly Moura and principal Kris Martin Meyer at Sun Terrace, and Kimberli Buckley at Concord Library. Yet again, success takes a village!)
And I'm especially excited to announce that this month marked the launch of the brand new district-wide MDUSD Education Foundation, to ensure a quality education for every child regardless of zip code. I am honored to have been elected President of the Board, and look forward to engaging business, community, parents, teachers and staff towards that bold goal.
As Delaine Eastin said, a single pencil alone is easily broken, but a handful of pencils is not. We now have over 440 people who joined the Cherise for MDUSD School Board network, and we received 140 campaign donations large and small in 2017. Person by person, dollar by dollar, we are building a movement that gets stronger every day. Please continue to share our website and Facebook page to grow our team.
I look forward to reconnecting with each of you in 2018, and walking the tread off my shoes to hear from our neighbors and communities throughout Mt Diablo School District. But for now, may your holidays be filled with rest, rejuvenation, food, family, and community.