saying… - The Spectrum Magazine - Redwood City's Monthly ...

saying… - The Spectrum Magazine - Redwood City's Monthly ...











Let’s Talk Solutions

Can ONE project be a catalyst to help solve many existing local problems?

The Answer is YES.

The Saltworks project in Redwood City can help address serious issues in the

Redwood City community, like FLOODING.

Low lying areas in Redwood City flood each year because

the Bay Front Canal (a City-owned and maintained facility

adjacent to this area) doesn’t have enough capacity to store

and convey the huge volume of water from the multiple

watersheds that drain into this canal.

The Atherton Channel in particular brings significant

amounts of water into the area from Menlo Park, Atherton

and other areas. Unfortunately, these communities have yet

to address this issue.

Solution to Flooding

While the Saltworks site doesn’t contribute to this problem, we

want to help fix it. A new on-site basin would give those flows

of water someplace to go other than these neighborhoods,

even the vast majority of a 100-year flood event.

Saltworks would build and maintain this basin at no cost

to existing residents.

What do critics of the Saltworks proposal have to offer to

help alleviate this chronic problem? NOTHING.

The Saltworks site, because of its scale, can help satisfy

this important community need. Even though Saltworks

did nothing to cause the problem, it is volunteering to

help fix it!

But don’t take our word for it. See for yourself. Examine

the facts. Ask Redwood City officials for a thorough

evaluation of our proposal and the opportunities – all of

the opportunities – presented by this site.

Redwood City


Follow Saltworks on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Spectrum_Flooding_Ad_fullpg_Final.indd 1

3/30/11 4:26 PM

The Spectrum.APRIL.2011

Table of Contents

Inside The Spectrum – 4

RCSD Corner – 5

“As I Was Saying...” – 6

Cultural Events – 7

The Davies Bunch: Keeping It

All in the Family – 10

P.S. The People Speak: Letters

to the Editor – 12

News Briefs – 14

Gold on the Vine:

The Dirty Dozen – 16

Community Interest – 21

Millie Cole Honored for Her

Decades of Volunteerism – 24

Shop Redwood City – 26

Insurance Tips: Tips for Buying

a New Home – 29

Senior Activities – 29

A Minute With Bob Bell – 30


April showers bring May flowers, but those flowers could not be any more colorful than the

April 2011 edition of The Spectrum Magazine. We may have outdone ourselves this month with

the quality of people and businesses we are introducing you to.

Our cover story this month is twofold. Sonia Picone has been growing tomato plants and

helping the Sequoia YMCA kids for years. Contributing writer Dale McKee writes about her

and the “Dirty Dozen” and the positive contributions they are making to our community.

On the subject of making positive contributions, Millie Cole was recently honored at the

Sequoia Awards for doing just that. She is a former schoolteacher who has continued the

philosophy of giving back in so many ways. As you will read, she is an inspiration and a true

role model for so many.

For over 75 years, Davies Appliance has been a strong, stable presence in our community,

and that tradition continues today. Learn how Redwood City’s oldest business has survived

the “big box” store invasion and continues to thrive.

This month, publisher Steve Penna writes about the May county supervisor race, a couple of

departures in our community and the new city manager position requirements he favors in his

column “As I Was Saying….”

We also have our regular features on senior activities, items of community interest, news

briefs, cultural and entertainment events, insurance tips from Hector Flamenco, information

from the Redwood City School District and the popular feature “A Minute With.”

We want to encourage you, our readers, to support our valuable Spectrum advertisers by

using their services when you are out shopping, dining or enjoying yourself in our community

with friends and family. Many of them have special offers for you to cut out and present,

including discounts on services, food and beverages, so please take the time to look over their

ads this month and use their coupons and discounts. And when you visit them, let them know

you appreciate their support of our local community publication.

Please visit our website for up-to-the-day information about our community at www. Until next month, thank you, Redwood City, and keep reading!

Steve Penna

Owner and Publisher

Anne Callery

Copy Editor

Dale McKee

Contributing Writer

James Massey

Graphic Designer

James R. Kaspar

Cover/Cover Story Photography

Contact Information:

Phone 650-368-2434

The Spectrum 3

Inside The Spectrum: Cover Story Photo Shoot




Corrin Rankin


234 Marshall Street #100

Redwood City, CA 94063

Donate Your Vehicle

Se Habla Español 650-363-2423 CA Insurance Lic. #1842835

Proceeds support Kainos Home & Training Center

Providing quality residential, vocational and support services to developmentally

disabled adults, enabling them to become active, contributing members of the


Maximum Tax Deductions – We handle paperwork

Using the technologies of telephone, texting and Facebook, this month’s cover

photo shoot was arranged by Spectrum publisher Steve Penna and cover

subjects Sonia Picone and Millie Cole for Tuesday, March 22, at 2 p.m. at the

“garden” on Cerrito Avenue, off Woodside Road and Alameda.

Penna arrived first and parked on the street, finishing up a telephone

interview as members of the “Dirty Dozen” started showing up. Kaspar

arrived shortly after, followed by Cole. Picone was already at the location

getting things ready because the weather conditions had blown the tarp off

the greenhouse covering the tomatoes.

Over the years, several readers have suggested The Spectrum do a story

on the group but it wasn’t until recently that Penna met Picone, and an

instant friendship and admiration led to this month’s cover. It was Penna who

thought of putting Cole in the shoot after she received the Sequoia Award.

Penna has known her for years and has admired her from day one.

Once they had all moved to the back of the house where the garden is

located, everyone started to exchange greetings and connect the “six degrees

of separation” that were discovered among those they knew. A sense of pride

and excitement was in the air. It was a magical shoot for all.

The entire shoot took about one hour.

Who could have come up with the idea of pricking (transplanting) 600

tomato and pepper plants for a total of 3,000 plants to sell, benefiting local

kids at the Sequoia YMCA Redwood City summer camp? An obvious answer

would be Cole herself.

By the 1920s, a “hot tomato” was slang for an attractive woman, and

though the term is no longer current, most Americans recognize it. We kindly

refer to Picone and Cole as such in jest on the cover to convey the mood of

the shoot and the spirit they both possess.

The Spectrum is extremely honored to introduce you to Picone and the

Dirty Dozen as well as to Cole. They are all examples of what our community

spirit is all about. Those who give of their time, efforts and commitment

are inspiring and serve as examples for our community to emulate. Let’s all

turn out on April 16 and show them how much we appreciate and support

community The Spectrum involvement. Mag AD 4/2/08 4:23 PM Page 1

Thank You

for Supporting the

Uccelli Family

Through the Years

We urge you to contribute

and support our local

non-profits who do

outstanding work in

our community.





Corrin Rankin

234 Marshall Street #100 • Redwood City, CA 94063

Se Habla Español CA InsuranceLic. #1842835

Peter and Paula Uccelli Foundation


RCSD Corner: News From the Redwood City School District

Roy Cloud “Dads Club”

A few years ago, Matt Castagnola sat down with Greg

Land, the principal at Roy Cloud School, where his

daughter attends, to discuss what needs existed in

the school community that might be met by increased

parent involvement. Out of that conversation was born

the Roy Cloud Dads Club, a group that has since grown

to include more than 30 fathers dedicated to improving

the quality of their neighborhood school and, more

importantly, to building community.

“It’s really like the social arm of the PTA,” said Castagnola, who grew up

in private school and saw firsthand the positive benefits that organized parent

engagement had on his school experience. “It’s all about bringing the parents

together to meet people and families you’ve never met, and also to help bring

the kids together outside of their usual social groups.”

The dads tackle a wide array of undertakings at Roy Cloud, a school in

the Redwood City School District spanning kindergarten through eighth

grade. Founder and President Castagnola, together with Vice President Mike

Jackson, coordinates various annual social events, which have exploded

in popularity among students and parents. Last year’s spaghetti dinner, for

example, attracted close to 300 pasta lovers, prompting the club to consider

adding a grill-out event in the spring. Dad Steve Salazar, also the owner of

Sneakers Pub & Grill, a favorite San Carlos eatery, was the lead organizer of

the toothsome evening.

The club also organizes family fitness nights geared toward wellness and

designed to keep the kids active, moving and enjoying healthy food options.

Periodically, a dad will also set up a projector to host outdoor movie nights.

“This is not about fundraising,” said Castagnola. “It’s about giving parents a

break and families having fun, together.”

An overnight campout on the baseball field, facilitated by the Dads Club,

is another recurring event that is growing into a much-loved tradition among

Cloud students. The theme for the annual event this past year — fittingly, in

light of the Giants World Series run — was “Field of Dreams” and tickets

to the event quickly sold out at Cloud’s auction party at the Elks Club.

Participation in the on-campus sleepover has fully doubled since last year,

from 40 to 80 campers, who enjoyed the classic baseball movie The Sandlot and

a barbecue dinner of burgers and hot dogs. “The kids really loved it and then

everyone woke up and had a pancake and bacon breakfast,” said Castagnola.

One notable Dads Club project this past school year has been the

construction of nine backpack racks, which Land has praised as improving

campus neatness. The lead organizer of the project, dad Adrian Smith,

designed the racks to hold the older students’ backpacks, which, when laden

with myriad textbooks and school supplies, were determined to weigh up to

50 pounds each! Twenty dedicated dads spent a weekend sawing, hammering

and painting the racks, finished in a bright sky blue.

The Dads Club has created a venue for more dads to get involved in our

school and has created some new social connections among our families,”

said Land. “We are so incredibly fortunate to have so many dedicated parent

leaders and volunteers at our school, and we simply could not do it without them.”

Above, from left: John Banfield (drilling), Adrian Smith and Vince Kapral. Below, from

left: Patrick Truby, Chris Rohlfes (with screw gun), Twain Mein and Matt Castagnola.

Above: All the material before assembly, being touched up by Alan Hansen. Below,

from left: Mein, Rohlfes, Smith (the designer), Truby and Castagnola.

The Spectrum 5

As I Was


Publisher | Steve Penna

In case you haven’t noticed, a county supervisor

campaign is going on right now. Six candidates

are running for the seat that was vacated by Mark

Church when he was elected last November

as county chief elections officer and assessor/

county clerk/recorder. He could have resigned his

supervisor seat then instead of forcing a special

election, but he did not have enough respect for us

taxpayers to do so. So we have to foot the bill for

the May 3 contest.

The election is an all-mail ballot that has Richard

Holober, president of the San Mateo County

Community College District board, Burlingame

Mayor Terry Nagel, San Mateo resident

Demetrios Nikas, Millbrae Councilwoman Gina

Papan, San Mateo Union High School District

trustee Dave Pine and activist Michael Stogner

all running to win the seat.

If most of the candidates seem unfamiliar to

Redwood City voters, they should. The seat that is

up for grabs is in District 1, which is in the north

county. But since it is an at-large election, we all

get the chance to vote. There has been discussion

about holding elections from within each district,

but since all supervisors vote on all county

issues, holding them accountable to all residents

is important. The fact that there are so many

candidates running from different backgrounds

and financial statuses should eliminate talk of

district elections in the near future.

Here’s how I see the election so far. U.S. Sen.

Barbara Boxer, the California Federation of

Teachers and the California Nurses Association

announced their endorsements of Holober, which

is not surprising since he is viewed as a candidate

who heavily supports unions and their causes.

But what was surprising was that the San Mateo

County Central Labor Council endorsed three

of the six candidates: Holober, Papan and Pine.

That shows me they (unions) don’t think Holober

will win and don’t want to throw all their eggs in

one basket but wanted to show support for him

supporting them. That’s how the game works.

The race really seems to be between two

candidates, Papan and Pine. Pine got a key

endorsement from the Sierra Club. He is also

endorsed by Redwood City Councilmen Ian Bain

and John Seybert as well as Assemblyman Rich

Gordon. He also has a very large campaign war

chest to get his message out to voters.

At this point, Papan seems to have the most

support and momentum. The San Mateo County

Association of Realtors, the San Mateo County

Deputy Sheriff’s Association and the International

Association of Firefighters Local 1879 all

endorsed her, as did Redwood City Vice Mayor

Alicia Aguirre and state Sen. Leland Yee. Her

father is the late Lou Papan, who was known as

the “Dean of the Assembly” for his 20 years of

service as assemblyman.

Of all the candidates I have met, Holober,

Papan and Pine are all worthy of the seat and each

brings some different quality that will make them

effective in the position.

Registered voters should have received or

will soon receive their ballots in the mail. Voter

response is expected to be very low, so be sure you

make it a priority to check your favorite candidate

and mail in your ballot before May 3.

By the way, I predict Papan will win.


Just as the search and recruitment process for a new

city manager began, our City Council announced

they were going to forgo the process and appoint

interim City Manager Bob Bell as permanent.

Surprised? I wasn’t. Even though when Bell first

took over he and several council members said it

would be just to guide “us” through the next couple

of months until “we” find a replacement, it became

apparent to so many that he seemed to just grow

into the position. Similar to how his predecessor,

Peter Ingram, did, but in a different way.

Some may attribute his recent handling of union

negotiations and his willingness to clean house

and make needed cuts to all departments and

personnel as reasons for his appointment. But I

look at other qualities as well. If he couldn’t do

those basic tasks, then I would hope our council

would not have appointed him. After all they are

paid to make those decisions, I trust that they feel,

moving forward, that he is the type of leader who

will work well with them.

I remember watching a council meeting one

Monday night when some youth group was being

honored. Bell was so excited for them that he literally ran

off the dais and took a picture of the group getting

a proclamation. In all my years of reporting, I have

never seen any elected official or department head

do that. That is when I thought to myself, that is

the kind of manager I want for my community.

Someone who is so involved and so proud that

he wants to capture the moment much as a parent

would. To me, actions like that speak so much

stronger than any words. Along with that, he has

been quite effective in implementing council

policy and assisting in moving our community in

a more fiscally responsible direction. So, forward

we go. One of his first major tasks will be to

recruit and hire our next police chief.

After I found out about the appointment, I

started to think about the issue of our city manager

being required to live in Redwood City. According

to the city charter (the community bible that

governs us all), section 26, the city manager’s

“residence shall not be a qualification for his

appointment; but promptly thereafter, he shall

become and thereafter remain an actual resident

of the city.” Since the city manager is essentially

our CEO and the administrative head of the city

government, it makes complete sense that he/she

should be required to live in the community he/she

is responsible for. Bell lives in Belmont and has

not voiced any plans of moving.

Does that really matter in today’s business

environment? It seems that the charter has the

right concept, and the argument of requiring

residency is very valid, but after all, that person

is chosen solely with reference to “executive and

administrative qualifications,” so, like many CEOs,

he might not live in the area he works for.

That has been the case here with past city

managers. Peter Ingram lived in unincorporated

Redwood City, Ed Everett in Belmont (he moved

to Redwood City after his divorce several years

after taking the helm) and James Smith in Foster

City. Now you might think this is unusual because

the city charter must be changed by voters to allow

one to live elsewhere. Not so.

Precedence was set by a California ruling that

basically threw out any type of residency requirement

because it is, you guessed it, discriminatory.

That ruling supersedes Redwood City’s charter,

so recently contracts have been worded that it is

“desired” that the employee live in Redwood City.

End of that story.


As I have been telling you for the past couple

of months, there have been changes at City Hall

and a big one happened last month. Pat Webb,

who has been with city for 13 years, retired. The

last title she held for the city was community

development services supervisor. During her time

with the city, she saw and was instrumental in

so many changes to our community, including

affordable housing, grants and the downtown area.

She was also someone who contributed to our

community in her off hours through Chamber of

Commerce and other activities.

I hope they downloaded just a few megabits of

the information in her brain so the good work she

started can continue. Best of luck, Pat!


(continues on page 28)

Cultural Events

Fox Theatre and Club Fox

2209 Broadway, downtown Redwood City

Tickets available at www.clubfoxrwc.

com, 650-369-7770 or

Club Fox

Pride and Joy. 9 p.m. Friday, April 8.

Metal Shop and The Butlers. 9 p.m. Saturday,

April 9.

Comedy Monday. 8 p.m. Monday, April 11.

E.C. Scott and Smoke (Club Fox Blues Jam). 7

p.m. Wednesday, April 13.

“Tickle Me” Comedy Special. 8 p.m. Thursday,

April 14.

An Evening with “House of Floyd.” 9 p.m.

Saturday, April 16.

The Art of Tango. 6 p.m. Sunday, April 17.

Comedy Monday. 8 p.m. Monday, April 18.

Wendy DeWitt (Club Fox Blues Jam). 7 p.m.

Wednesday, April 20.

Luce. 8 p.m. Friday, April 22.

Richard Bean & Sapo. 8 p.m. Saturday, April 23.

Comedy Monday. 8 p.m. Monday, April 25.

Bluestate (Club Fox Blues Jam). 7 p.m.

Wednesday, April 27.

Guitarfest 2011. 8 p.m. Thursday, April 28.

Mustache Harbor. 9 p.m. Friday, April 29.

The Refugees – A Tribute to Tom Petty & the

Heartbreakers. 8 p.m. Saturday, April 30.

Filoli House

Cañada Road, Woodside

650-364-8300, ext. 507

Filoli, designed by California architect Willis Polk

and built in the early part of the 20th century,

is one of the finest examples of country house

architecture in the United States and is one of the

few in California that remains intact in its original

setting. Bruce Porter, with later help from Isabella

Worn, laid out the 16 acres of gardens. Both guided

and self-guided tours of the house and grounds

are available from February through October.

Tours (ongoing)

• Guided House and Garden Tour – This twohour,

docent-led tour includes both the house

and the gardens. Reservations required.

• Self-Guided Tour – No reservations required

for this tour. A map is available for the selfguided

tour and volunteers are posted in both

the house and the gardens to answer questions.

There is also a continuous 14-minute video on

the history of Filoli available in the Visitor and

Education Center.

• Nature Hike – This hike is available by

reservation only on Saturdays at 10 a.m.

The hike covers roughly three miles of trails

and takes approximately two and a half

hours. Nature docents describe wildlife,

plants, endangered species and the historical

background of the area. Visitors may not hike

without a docent.

• Orchard Tour – This tour is available on

selected days throughout the open season. With

a docent tour of the unique heirloom orchard,

learn about the tradition of the gentleman’s

orchard, and how Filoli is conserving not only

rare fruits but also this defining landscape

feature of the country estate. Reservations required.

Open Tuesday–Saturday 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m.,

Sunday 11 a.m.–3:30 p.m. (last admission is 2:30 p.m.)

Admission: adults $15, seniors (ages 65 and older)

$12, students $5, children ages 4 and younger are

free. Higher fees in effect on special event days.

The Spectrum 7

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Redwood City

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Est. 1973

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The Spectrum 9

The Davies Bunch: Keeping It All in the Family

By Nicole Minieri, contributing writer

Who could have guessed that a failed 1923 invention would pave the way

for one of Redwood City’s most profitable and upstanding establishments?

Located at 1580 El Camino Real, Davies Appliance is a family-run company

that’s been serving the San Francisco Bay Area for over 75 years and is still

going strong, with a remarkable Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating of A+ to

boot. In addition to such well-deserved accolades and commercial success,

this dynamic retail enterprise has an engaging history.

Originally established in 1916 as a small auto

repair shop at the corner of El Camino Real and

Vera Avenue, Davies Auto Repair was owned and

operated by Edward Davies, one of seven children

of Mr. and Mrs. Albert Davies. After suffering a series

of financial struggles over the next several years

and diverting his attention toward developing an

engine invention only to have it fall short in 1923,

Davies decided it would be best to pass his beloved

business on to his younger brothers, Albert and

Thomas, with the hope they would assume full

responsibility for his debts. At the time of the

business transfer, Thomas was already an employee

at the auto repair shop and Albert was fresh out of

Sequoia High School. Upon assuming ownership,

the brothers remodeled the outdated outfit and

changed the nature of the business from fixing

“buckets of bolts” to selling Willys-Overland cars

under the new name of Davies Auto Company.

“In 1931 Al Davies didn’t really like the style

of the Willys dealership, so he chose to take on

the Chevrolet franchise and held it until 1992, one

of the oldest franchises in the country,” said Joe

Biddle, present owner of Davies Appliance. “But

also, during the 1930s General Motors owned

Frigidaire and asked the Davies dealership to put

some appliances on the floor, which was mainly

refrigerators and ranges at that time. The selling

of appliances along with Chevrolet cars continued

on until appliances became more popular, and that

is what initially started Davies Appliance.”

With the slow but steady increase in popularity

of household appliances and the sudden increase

in the sale of automobiles, the Davies brothers

determined that it was time to separate the

two entities, and in 1941 a new showroom was

built at Jefferson and El Camino Real (Sequoia

Station) to accommodate auto sales and service

work only. The grand opening of the showroom

was in January 1942. However, even as business

was growing, the Davies brothers began to face

unavoidable hardships with both endeavors as a

result of World War II. But with smart thinking

in the midst of the war years, they acquired used

cars and supplemented their business with the

handling of general merchandise.

“Sales were very poor during the second

world war, but they took on Firestone and other

accessories to pull them through because they

couldn’t sell automobiles, and appliances were

scarce during the war as well,” said Biddle.

“Luckily, they managed to sell enough to keep

them afloat and remain in business. Actually,

things turned out very well for them after the war

because Al stockpiled a lot of automobiles during

the war, and the sale of used cars opened up by

the late 40s–early 50s.”

The appliance sector, which was still a small,

separate operation, also experienced postwar

financial gain. Business was booming, and

by 1951 the Davies brothers moved the entire

appliance department to a larger location at

1502 El Camino Real in order to accommodate

the expansion of a variety of home appliances,

including televisions and radios. And good

fortune would stretch quite a way for the Davis

Brothers, because by 1963 the annual sale of

appliances and TVs grossed approximately

$300,000, and auto sales and service totaled in

excess of $3 million.

Grateful for their wealth, Al and Thomas

Davies always publicly expressed gratitude

toward their hard-working loyal staff as well,

which consisted of 68 employees in the auto

division and seven employees in TVs and

appliances. Joining the dedicated Davies force

was Biddle, who married Al’s eldest daughter,

Virginia, in 1953. Oddly, the two had been in the

same graduating high school class in 1951 but

never personally met until they ended up going on

skiing trips at the same time in Long Barn, Calif.,

well after commencement.

“I came into the picture because of my wife,

Virginia,” said Biddle. “I went into the Air Force

right out of high school and was stationed all over

this country and in Germany,” he said. “When I

came home from the Air Force in 1955, I went to

work in a grocery store and decided I better go

to college. Virginia’s father offered to give me a

part-time job detailing automobiles while I went

to San Jose State. I graduated third in my class in

1960, an achievement I am very proud of today. I

was hired out of San Jose State to work at Ampex

as a military project administrator in Redwood

City. Once funding was lost, the job became less

interesting, and that’s when Virginia’s father

offered me a job running the appliance store. So I

came to this store in 1963 and have been here ever

since. This store has been my life.”

While caring for their two children and keeping

house, Virginia also worked alongside Biddle at

the appliance store, doing all of the bookkeeping

and accounting. When she retired from work to

care for their grandchildren, their daughter, Linda,

took over the position and currently manages all

of the daily operations of Davies Appliance with

her brother, Bill. Biddle highly praises his entire

team as being just as committed and involved

as the staff was back in 1963. “This business is

very rough because it takes a lot of money to run

and you really have to get the right people to run

“We do not do any baitand-switch

or false

advertising like some

of our competitors.

Everything on the floor

is truthfully priced”

it. We have the best staff without question,” said

Biddle. “Our sales manager, Dennis Morelli, is

absolutely the best salesman I have ever had in 48

they don’t pay for it; we do.”

But getting once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to

travel to exotic, faraway places may not be nearly

“We are back and ahead of the game now!”

years. He is a fantastic person and always does a

fantastic job.”

In fact, Morelli will in be in charge of operating

the store after this year, along with Biddle’s

grandson, Chris Chambers, another ace employee.

“He has been with us for several months, and we

are going to lose him for four months while he

plays semipro baseball this summer in Canada,”

said Biddle. “I’m very proud of my grandson.

He is an excellent salesman and has a great

personality. He is just a wonderful kid.”

I suppose it should come as no surprise to

any of us that Chambers happens to be Biddle’s

numero-uno contender to take over the historic

family business when he retires. Oh, wait, that’s

right, Biddle doesn’t plan on retiring. “I won’t

retire,” said Biddle. “I come and go as I please,

plus my wife and I take a lot of time to travel. In

the earlier days most of the companies we dealt

with had incentive trips, and we won so many

of those trips all over the world. We have been

to Europe 34 times, the Far East 15 times, South

America, Africa, Hong Kong and China. But now,

as exhilarating to Biddle as the success streak

Davies Appliance has had under his reign. “We

run a very honest business,” said Biddle. “We do

not do any bait-and-switch or false advertising

like some of our competitors. Everything on

the floor is truthfully priced. Our reputation

is such that we even sell to a lot of celebrities.

We definitely keep it real, even through the

difficult times. Business was slow over the last

several years, but now business has picked up

tremendously over the last few months. We are

back and ahead of the game now!”

In a Feb. 13, 1963, Redwood City Tribune

article titled “Invention That Failed Led to Start

of Davies Auto Co.,” Al Davies was quoted as

saying, “The next 20 years will be important

in America’s future. I hope and pray that there

will be enough strong people to keep alive the

American way of life as I have known it.” Who

would have guessed 48 years later that this

sentiment was a self-fulfilling prophecy? How

amazing is that!

Opposite, top: Chris Chambers, Bill Biddle, Virginia Biddle, Linda (Biddle) Chambers and Joe Biddle. Opposite, bottom: the

Davies bunch! This page, top: Davies offers pickup and delivery service daily. Above: the Davies office and sales team.

The Spectrum 11

P.S. The People Speak: Letters to the Editor

Mayor Ira: ‘The definition of insanity’

Dear Editor,

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and

expecting different results.”

This quote is sometimes attributed to Benjamin Franklin, and other times

to Albert Einstein, but either way, it’s clear that these wise men weren’t

talking about municipal finance and the staggering increases in employee

costs facing local governments. But they might as well have been. To

continue to allow exploding increases in employee costs and expect to

maintain any sense of financial stability is nothing less than insanity.

In the last 10 years in Redwood City, while revenue has crept up by a mere

16 percent, the number of employees has decreased by 19 percent (a reduction

of 83 positions) and the average total cost per employee (salaries and benefits)

has risen over 90 percent to a staggering $156,000 per employee. It’s a fiscal

trajectory faced by local governments that will bankrupt cities in a few years

or require intolerable cuts in services to the community. Employee costs need

to be brought under control now.

Those of us who have been given the mantle of leadership owe it to those

we serve, the people of our communities, to ensure there is integrity in the

fiscal stability of the communities in which they live, work, play and serve.

A practical, realistic approach is needed, not a continuing erroneous belief

that we can continue on the same path as in years past. Those who represent

employee labor groups also need to realize we are on an insane course toward

financial demise and need to come to agreement on the best approach to rein

in these costs.

Mayor Ira wrong on his ‘frustration’

Jeff Ira, Mayor, City of Redwood City

Dear Editor,

Redwood City Mayor Jeff Ira said on March 22 that he is frustrated by

Redwood City residents voicing their opposition to the proposed Cargill

project. He states that no one yet knows what the proposal is and therefore

commenting is premature. This confuses me. In May 2010, Cargill submitted

an application to develop 1,436 acres of salt flats in Redwood City. The

application, which can be found at

saltworks, specifically proposes to build 12,000 housing units and 1,000,000

square feet of commercial and office space.

Hundreds of Redwood City residents are voicing their opposition to these

specific plans. I am disheartened to hear any elected official publicly say he is

frustrated when citizens express their opinions on issues that will affect their


The commuter side of Saltworks

Dear Editor,

I recently read the results of the commuter survey, and it made me wonder if

people who oppose new housing on the Saltworks here in Redwood City ever

thought about what really matters to people who work here but can’t afford to

live here.

I myself used to commute long-distance from Tracy every day to come to

work in Redwood City, which made my quality of life terrible. It was a twohour

drive one-way for a total of four hours of commuting per day. Now I am

a business owner and I can afford to live here. I have employees who work

for me, and none of them can afford to live in Redwood City. One is a mother

of three and commutes every day from Hayward. Another is a single mother

with a son and commutes from South San Francisco. One of my employees

resigned last month because he was unable to make the commute every day

from Albany. Both of the ladies I still employ would love to live in Redwood

City but cannot afford to. My business is a 24-hour business that would

function more effectively if my employees could actually live in this city and

be closer to work.

I feel for these ladies and their daily commute. Is that what we really want?

For dedicated working people to choose between hours on the road, and away

from their children and families? As far as we are concerned, those new

houses can’t get built fast enough.

New soccer fields needed

Corrin Rankin, Redwood City

Dear Editor,

It’s hard to find a family in Redwood City that doesn’t have a child playing or

wanting to play youth soccer. We have kids with so much talent and desire (I

myself have two kids who are great soccer players), but they wind up having

to play on crowded and terrible fields.

The beating the current fields take is tremendous: There’s just too much

demand for them, from both youth and adult leagues. Playing on fields like

that is not only frustrating to kids, it can increase the risk of injury.

So I was more than thrilled to see how much of the Saltworks site will be

devoted to new soccer fields as part of setting aside half the land for open

space. We need those fields, badly. And to have it paid for by the developer

makes the proposal even better.

This is just what the soccer playing kids of Redwood City need.

Joel Sage, Redwood City

Kaia Eakin, Redwood City

And on his criticism?

Dear Editor,

Recently Redwood City Mayor Jeff Ira said that Cargill is paying for staff

time to work on their application to develop 1,436 acres of salt flats. This

“provides an additional revenue source” for the city, he says, which is

particularly helpful in these lean times. Unfortunately for the citizens of

Redwood City, it seems that not all revenue sources are equal. When staff in

the city manager’s office raised over $100,000 in grants in 2009–10 to study

and implement a climate action plan and environmental program, the council

in its March 22, 2010, meeting criticized them and ordered an audit to make

sure they were not costing the city any money. Is it that when the source is

Cargill, the revenue is good, but when the source is the Packard Foundation

for implementation of environmental programs, the revenue is bad?

Bryan Beck, Redwood City

Let your opinion be heard!

Send your letters to

or Opinions & Letters, The Spectrum Magazine,

P.O. Box 862, Redwood City, CA 94064

Letters to the editor should be no longer than 300 words.

Columns should be no longer than 750 words. Illegibly written

and anonymous letters will not be accepted. Please include a

daytime phone number where we can reach you.

Never late for the Theatre

when you eat at Little India.

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Mon - Fri 11am - 2pm

Regular $9.95 Vegetarian $7.95

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Mon - Sat 5 - 9pm

Regular $12.95 Vegetarian $10.95

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917 Main St., Redwood City

650-361-8737 •

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or construction needs?

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Or go to:

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The Spectrum 13

News Briefs

Sketch Released of Attempted Kidnapper

Year in Jail for Giants ‘One-Punch Death’

Redwood City police released a

sketch of a man who attempted to

kidnap a 14-year-old girl, police

officials said.

The girl was walking in the 100

block of Arch Street when a man

drove his car into a driveway, blocking

her path. The suspect opened the door

of his car, threatened the girl and

ordered her into his car. The girl

refused and the suspect drove away.

The man, described as a white man

in his 40s with short gray hair and a

heavyset build, was last seen driving

east on Hopkins Avenue, police said.

The man’s car was described as a

newer model, gray, four-door sedan,

with dry cleaning hanging in the

driver-side rear window, police said.

Anyone with information

regarding this incident is urged to

call the Redwood City police at 650-


A San Carlos man was sentenced to a year in jail for the one-punch death of

another man outside AT&T Park during a San Francisco Giants game in 2008.

Taylor Buckley, 20, was sentenced at a tear-filled hearing in San Francisco

Superior Court that drew dozens of family members and friends of the victim,

18-year-old Anthony Giraudo, as well as Buckley’s family and friends.

Buckley agreed to a plea deal last month on an involuntary manslaughter

charge for sucker-punching Giraudo during an argument outside the stadium

during a Giants game on May 9, 2008.

Giraudo, a baseball player who was a student at Cañada College in

Redwood City, fell and struck his head on the pavement. He died the next day

at San Francisco General Hospital.

His father, Bob Giraudo, spoke at the sentencing, calling the death

“senseless. There are no words to express the pain my family feels,” he said.

Buckley had been out of custody on bail until pleading guilty on Feb. 10,

and Giraudo’s mother, Sherri, described getting late-night phone calls on

several occasions from friends who were “hysterical” after seeing Buckley

out at parties and concerts.

Five friends of the Giraudo family also spoke at the hearing, with many

saying the sentence was too light and admonishing Buckley for his actions,

causing Buckley’s mother at one point to storm out of the courtroom.

Before being sentenced, Buckley tearfully apologized to the Giraudos. “I’m

sorry; I truly am,” he said while choking back tears.

Buckley’s attorney, Douglas Horngrad, pointed out that more than 40

letters were submitted to the court by Buckley’s family and friends vouching

for his character. “This is not a time for bitterness or anger,” he said.

However, Judge James Collins said, “The Taylor Buckley in the letters is

different from the Taylor Buckley in the probation report,” which showed a

young man who was violent and disrespectful and “always with alcohol on board.”

Collins sentenced Buckley to a year in county jail, with 47 days’ credit for

time served, and five years’ probation. He added a stipulation requiring that

Buckley “not have a drop of alcohol” during the probation period.

Buckley will also have to repay the state more than $9,000 in restitution

that it paid to Giraudo’s family.

Collins said he hopes the hearing “gives some closure to everybody.”

Two Arrested for Strong-Arm Robbery

Two men are in custody after robbing and beating a man waiting for a taxi

on the 1800 block of Broadway in Redwood City, according to police. The

victim was treated and released at a local hospital, according to police.

The victim was approached by four men, who punched and kicked him

while taking his cell phone and shoes. He received a laceration to the head,

according to police.

One suspect, a 17-year-old from East Palo Alto, was arrested shortly after

the incident and was found to have the man’s cell phone. The other three

suspects were identified, and detectives located and arrested Damar Desean

Walker, 18, of Redwood City, according to police.

Two Arrested in RWC Caltrain Attack

Two men have been arrested on suspicion of beating and robbing a man at the

Redwood City Caltrain station last month, agency officials said.

Desean Walker, 19, and Thomas Nicholas Furman, 18, both of Redwood

City, were arrested by transit police on suspicion of robbery and assault with

great bodily injury, according to Caltrain officials.

The pair was arrested in connection with the March 4 attack that left a

47-year-old man in critical condition at a hospital, officials said.

The victim was attacked by a group of assailants who were trying to rob

him as he waited for a southbound train at about 7:30 p.m. that day.

If Walker’s name sounds familiar it is because he was already in custody

(see above item) on unrelated robbery charges when he was arrested for the

Caltrain attack, according to officials.

Three search warrants were also executed in Redwood City and East Palo

Alto in connection with the case, and evidence recovered during the searches

has provided investigators with information that they say will help locate

other suspects in the case.

“We are confident that everyone will be brought to justice,” Dave Triolo,

Caltrain’s chief of protective services, said in a statement.

“This incident is an extremely rare occurrence in the Caltrain system and

we want to deliver a clear message: Commit a crime and face a swift and

effective response from law enforcement,” Triolo said.

Anyone with information about the case is encouraged to contact Detective

Victor Lopez at 650-622-8048.

Orozco Takes 43-Year Plea Deal

The county’s youngest murder defendant, known mostly from his escape

from juvenile hall and jailhouse plot to intimidate witnesses, took a 43-year

plea deal rather than face life in prison without parole.

Josue Raul Orozco, 20, pleaded no contest to voluntary manslaughter for

shooting Francisco Rodriguez, 21, in the back of the head on July 12, 2005,

as he ran to safety outside his Redwood City home. Orozco also admitted

several gang and witness-tampering charges. In return, Orozco received a

43-year sentence of which he must serve 85 percent. He has credit for several

years served already.

Prosecutor Josh Stauffer called the resolution good considering his age and

that the first trial ended with a hung jury.

“We were able to secure a very large sentence on a very bad guy,” Stauffer said.

Stauffer and the defense had been discussing a possible plea deal since the

end of Orozco’s first trial, which ended in a mistrial, but nothing was secure.

Orozco was just 14 when charged with murder, gun and gang allegations in

Rodriguez’s death. The case gave Orozco the dubious distinction of being the

youngest person ever charged as an adult with murder in San Mateo County.

Two years later, he became the first ward to escape from the county’s recently

opened juvenile hall.

Orozco was not charged with the escape attempt although jurors in

the 2009 trial learned of it from Stauffer, who argued fleeing showed

consciousness of guilt. Jurors primarily were asked to decide if Orozco was a

cold-blooded killer looking to earn respect of fellow gang members or a shy

(continues on page 20)

Events Around Town

Kiwanis Club Crab Cioppino

From top left: Councilwoman Rosanne Foust and Jeff Thorson shared a laugh. Members of the Sequoia High School Key Club volunteered. Elizabeth Goleta had a blast. Lynne

Mercer showed off her special Kiwanis shirt. A group of attendees struck a pose for Kiwanis. A joyful cioppino lover and Nicole McKay finished up a successful night.




San Mateo Credit Union’s On Broadway branch has it all.

Auto loans? We’ve got ‘em. Home loans? We’ve got ‘em. In fact, whatever financial product or service you’re looking for,

the On Broadway branch of San Mateo Credit Union (SMCU) stands ready to meet your needs.

Visit us today at 830 Jefferson Avenue or call us at (650) 363-1725.

(650) 363-1725 |

The Spectrum 15

Gold on the Vine: The Dirty Dozen

By Dale McKee, contributing writer

When I was told I would be writing a story about the Dirty Dozen,

I half expected something involving Clint Eastwood, Telly Savalas

and World War II movies. I certainly didn’t expect to find a pastoral

garden hidden in Redwood City — a peaceful, idyllic yard that

stretches back over two lots and has lush, green vines, crated plants

and flowering fruit trees. And I can’t imagine a person who’s more

the antithesis of a squinting, dirt-faced commando than Sonia Picone.

Sonia Picone readies seed for sale to help send local kids to camp.

Picone is a warm, classy lady with great drive

and incredible optimism. She’ll insist that the Dirty

Dozen is a team effort and that it’s not about her.

The group is a motivated collection of volunteers,

centered around the Sequoia YMCA, who work

an impressive organic farm and organize the sale

of its proceeds for the benefit of the community

youth. But the story of the Dirty Dozen certainly

begins with Picone. We spoke as she gave me a

tour of the amazing garden that — like Picone —

gives so much to the community and its future.

“When my mom died in 2005,” Picone said,

“she had this beautiful garden. She had tomato

plants, pepper plants, a giant pumpkin growing,

she had basil — you name it, she had it in the garden,

the most beautiful garden she’d ever had. And

so I was really suffering. I didn’t know what to

do. I was in despair about my mom’s death. And

I thought, you know what, I’m going to call my

cousin, who’s a master gardener. Why don’t we pick

all of the seeds out of the tomatoes and save them?”

She explained this to me as she showed me

a tented enclosure that held no less than 3,000

tomato plants of all varieties. There were types

I’d never even heard of, all in little planter boxes

covered on top but open to the weather on the sides.

“My mother had the tomatoes named after a

lot of people,” Picone added, showing me a few.

Some of the seeds came from Italy. “We planted

all the seeds, and then we saved them for the

next year. And then I gathered my grandchildren

and my kids, their spouses, the people in the

neighborhood, whoever wanted to come who felt

close to my mom and dad, and I asked them if

they would want to plant the seeds again for the

next year.” They planted so many that they didn’t

know what to do with them all, and that’s where

the story gets really interesting.

“What can we do with all these plants?” she’d

wondered. “So my grandkids said maybe we

should sell them. So we ended up selling them.

My mother was really involved with the Sequoia

YMCA, and so I thought, let’s bring them the

money.” They were able to hand Julie Wesolek,

the executive director of the YMCA, a $100 check

that first year. Their fledgling effort, however, was

only just taking off.

The next year, they gathered and were able to

recruit more people to help, and they made $350.

The third year, that number swelled to $975, and

the fourth, it reached $3,500. Last year, they were

able to raise and donate $7,000, which sent 50

children to summer camp.

“It’s all about helping, giving back to the

community,” Picone said. “Sustainability.

We want to teach the kids, and now we have

a greenhouse donated to the Y.” They’re not

benefiting the kids just by sending them to camp.

They’re also educating and enriching them by

teaching them about sustainable agriculture.

Most kids these days think apples come from the

supermarket, Picone pointed out, and learning the

process of how they are grown is a valuable and

eye-opening experience for them.

“We’re really hard-working people, and I don’t

want my grandkids to ever forget where we came

from. We came from dirt gardeners. In this country

you can do or be anything you want to be,” she said.

When she was a child, Picone’s parents sent

her down to the valley to pick fruit and work.

“I really became very attached to the land,” she

said. She wanted to continue her parents’ legacy,

“especially my mother, because she was a giving

person. She gave to everybody.”

It was this generosity that inspired Picone

to continue the project to benefit the Y and the

community. “We have fruits and vegetables here

during summer months,” she said. “We collect

all the fruits, harvest them and bring them to the

YMCA and give them away.” Fig trees, plums,

Asian pears and many grafted trees bearing

multiple fruits thrive beyond the tomato plants,

not to mention a chicken yard with egg-laying

fowl. “I guess I’m like the Scarlett O’Hara of

Redwood City,” she smiled. “Over my dead body

will there ever be a house here. My husband

agrees, and he’s also the one who trims the trees

and what-have-you.”

The Dirty Dozen, which is now actually more

like two dozen, got together through a chain of

networking and interest, primarily through the Y.

What started with the Picone family has grown to

become a much larger effort. “It’s really exciting

because a lot of people have gotten together for

a common cause, which is to help the children,

the community and the YMCA.” The group has

grown over the years, and now includes Sueann

Stone, Jean Dini, Janet Thomas, Sue Eyre, Lynette

Bogan, Kay Grant, Donna Forsman, Barbara

Wilson, Ray and Sonia Picone, Pat Davey, Judy

Zugelder (who has the distinction of naming the

group), Lilo Leupi, Judy Lund, Glenda Maguire,

Christiane Barth, Judith Uccelli, Larry Dini, Margie

Chiechi, Donna and Vince Aiello, Judy Allbritton,

Dolores Malmborg and Maria Tarczy. Picone had

high praise for her team’s efforts, along with those

of the community and supporters.

They are truly amazing. Most are longtime

Sequoia Y members’ family and friends,”

Picone said. ”We are a group of volunteers, no

membership, that grew from 12 to what it is today

because we wanted to work together for one

common bond, to give back to children in our

community so that they would have the benefit of

going to Sequoia Y summer camp.”

Picone continued, “Maria Peterson, owner of

Styles Hair Design in Redwood City, is our Dirty

Dozen cheerleader! Historically she has given

plants from our sale to her clients. We gave her

an honorary Dirty Dozen shirt to thank her and

named a tomato after her. The other person we

named a tomato for is Donato, owner of the Donato

Enoteca restaurant. He has been a local supporter

to our group since he opened his restaurant almost

two years ago.” Other major supporters have been

Lyngso Garden Materials, Wegman’s Nursery and

Franchi Seeds/Farmer John.

All this work culminates in the benefit sale, where

you can take home some of these magnificent,

locally grown tomatoes. One type of tomato, Maska’s

Favorite, is named after Picone’s mother and is an

award-winner. They have cherry, beefsteak, plum

and many other varieties. The sale is Saturday, April

16, starting at 9 a.m. at the Picone residence: 262

Santiago Ave., Redwood City, off of Woodside

Road. Over 3,000 tomato plants of all varieties

will be selling for $3 each. Picone has already

passed out over a thousand postcards and is

hoping to make this year their best sale yet. “We

can send so many more kids to camp,” she said.

Last year, people made purchases, but some also

made donations. People came from San Francisco,

San Jose, and some from as far away as Boulder

Creek. A lot of people donated boxes, dirt and

even coffee — an element this writer understands

and appreciates — to the effort. They save and

reuse seeds. Everything is done organically, with

no pesticides involved. They use recycling and

composting to this end, even laying down straw

instead of spraying herbicide to control weeds. It’s

about sharing the legacy of her family.

“One thing people should know is you sell the

tomatoes in mid-April, but you can put them in

your window sill until May before putting them in

the ground. You don’t have to rush home and get

them in the ground right away,” Picone said.

Maintaining this garden and contributing to the

community looks like a lot of work, even to my

untrained eyes. And it is, Picone agrees, but she

insists that it’s a labor of love. It’s a living legacy

and testament to her family. She insists it’s a team

effort and not about her, but her positive drive and

determination began a benefit to the community

and the generations to come.

Let Telly Savalas top that.

Editor’s note: For more information about the sale and other

ways to benefit the youth programs, visit the YMCA website at

Members of the Dirty Dozen showing love and care for the plants and our community.

The Spectrum 17

Events Around Town

Rotary Club Irish Night

From top left: Supporting Kainos and the Rotary Club were Gary Markwith, Rosanne Foust, Rosie Markwith and Lourdes Carini. Friends from the San Mateo Credit Union had

a blast! Former Redwood City Mayors Jim Hartnett, Jack Greenalch, Rosanne Foust and Bill Royer. Kainos family members enjoying the dinner and auction. Cheri Hurst gets

catered to by one of the Smith twins. Auctioneer Jack Stephens gets the crowd in the giving mood. Jack Castle is always there to support a great cause.

Help the

Redwood City



give our students

the education they

need to succeed!

Benefit for a Brighter Future 2011

May 6, 2011 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm

Pacific Shores Center

A lively evening featuring students, sharks, jazz, and the business,

community, and education leaders of Redwood City.

Sponsor, volunteer, or buy a ticket!

See how you can help at future. For

sponsorships contact Zeke Mead at: or


Presenting Sponsor: Wells Fargo

Program Sponsors: Google, Port of Redwood City

The Spectrum 19

Events Around Town

Goodwill Hunting Fashion Show

The eighth annual show at Casa de Redwood on Veterans Boulevard proved to be a great afternoon of style and community sharing. From top left: Ginny Hughes and

Councilwoman Rosanne Foust outbid each other for auction items. A group of residents enjoy the show. Modeling is so much fun! Paula Uccelli with the Easter Bunny. A lady in

red and her friend look for a special outfit. Dwayne McDowell serves up some bubbly.

News Briefs (Continued from page14)

boy with a low IQ whom the convicted getaway

driver ordered to confess.

According to the Stauffer, Orozco shot Rodriguez

as the man tried running for safety, slowed by a

deformed leg. Orozco, who Stauffer contended

was an active participant in a Sureños gang if not a

full-fledged member, gathered into a car his troops

carrying a gun, a bat and a shank and sought out

Norteños as payback for an earlier slight. They

circled Rodriguez twice, covered their faces with

blue rags and Orozco struck, he said.

Defense attorney Ray Buenaventura did not

return a call for comment on the negotiated settlement.

During Orozco’s first trial, he claimed

convicted getaway driver Faustino Ayala was the

shooter and a man named Chongo was the driver.

Buenaventura claimed the prosecution tailored its

evidence to convict Orozco rather than focusing

on the truth of the case.

After the murder, Orozco, Ayala and three

minors including Orozco’s brother were arrested.

The minors were convicted of murder in juvenile

court but Orozco, then 17, escaped juvenile hall

in February 2008 before he and Ayala stood trial.

Ayala was singularly convicted of second-degree

murder and sentenced to 46 years to life in prison.

Orozco was apprehended in Texas while

allegedly burglarizing houses and extradited back

to California for trial.

In December 2009, jurors split almost evenly

between guilt and innocence and a judge declared

a mistrial. In January, prosecutors announced

retrial plans. The next month, the District

Attorney’s Office also announced Orozco was

suspected of organizing five other alleged Sureños

gang members outside of jail between May

2009 and March 2010 to threaten witnesses into

changing testimony or not appearing. The plan

was uncovered through jailhouse phone records

during the last half of the first trial.

Three of the conspirators took plea deals and

prosecutors dropped charges against another

due to insufficient evidence. Another, Alexander

Stephen Villar, 20, is scheduled for trial July 11

but has an offer on the table that expires April 29.

Orozco is in custody without bail. He will be

formally sentenced April 29.

RWC Nurse Jailed for Elder Abuse

A Redwood City Kaiser nurse accused of hitting

an elderly female patient in the mouth with her fist

was sentenced to four days in jail after pleading

no contest to misdemeanor elder abuse.

Joan Rogers, 61, must surrender to the jail April

16 and should be eligible to serve her four-day

sentence through a work program. She was also

placed on two years’ probation.

On Oct. 29, 2009, Rogers, of San Carlos, was

treating a 91-year-old woman hospitalized for

a hip fracture who was reportedly combative.

Prosecutors said another hospital employee heard

the woman yell for Rogers to stop hitting her and

saw Rogers strike her in the mouth “with a fist in

a hammer-like motion.” The woman’s lip was cut

and bleeding.

Rogers told her supervisor she was only

defending herself against the patient, according to

the District Attorney’s Office.

Rogers settled the case the morning of jury


She has been out of custody on her own

recognizance and has no credit for time served

against her sentence.

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Call Us Today


Community Interest

7th Annual ‘Poker Ride’ to Aid Redwood City Youth

Paul Dazey and Alpio Barbara and riders. Dotress and Bruce Rollin from last year’s event.

Generally it’s not good news when you find yourself surrounded by police

vehicles, but as the official escort, a group of officers will make for smooth

riding as over 250 motorcyclists are expected to take part in the annual 100-

mile Poker Run benefiting the youth of San Mateo County. You too have the

opportunity to join in the fun.

Event details:

Dudley Perkins Harley Davidson & Golden Gate HOG Chapter

Saturday, May 14

Registration fee includes: one ride T-shirt per bike, one ride patch, BBQ

lunch, poker hand and raffle ticket (passengers receive BBQ lunch only)

The day of the ride, activities will begin with registration from 8:30 to 9:45

a.m. at Dudley Perkins Co. (333 Corey Way, South San Francisco). The “Ride

Out” is set for 10 a.m. and will end with a BBQ lunch at Sparky’s Hot Rod

Garage (975 Industrial, Suite B) in San Carlos.

Early registration (prior to April 29) will be $25 per motorcycle ($30 with

passenger), $10 additional T-shirt and $5 additional ride patch.

Among the recipients of the ride proceeds will be the Redwood City

Police Activities League. The organization works with 3,500 at-risk and

economically challenged youths each year, providing programs including

computer lab, karate, dance, after-school tutoring and boxing.

For more information, please call Alpio Barbara at 650-245-4653.

Kainos Launches Community-Wide Funding Challenge

In a period when every day we hear of dire cuts being made in an effort

to balance budgets on the federal, state and local levels, many of our own

community-based organizations are being impacted. Kainos Home and Training

Center, a not-for-profit organization in Redwood City that helps adults with

developmental disabilities live more independent lives, is one such group.

In an effort to address the impact these cuts will have, Kainos launched a

community-wide funding campaign at its recent Annual Dinner on March 25.

What’s unique about Kainos’ approach, however, is that it acknowledges the

individual financial constraints donors are also feeling as a result of the economy.

The reality is that while funding for local organizations like Kainos is

being cut to perilous levels,” noted Kainos volunteer Alex Wright, “many

of us simply aren’t in a position to write a four- or five-figure check to

personally support these agencies, no matter how much we wish we could.”

So Wright, together with his wife, Cherlene, became the first to join the Kainos

24-Hour Challenge. The Challenge provides a manageable alternative to

writing a single large check while still enabling members of the community

to have a meaningful impact on Kainos and its clients. By pledging one hour

of their salary each pay period, donors contribute the equivalent of less than

the cost of a Starbucks venti coffee each day. That hour, multiplied by an

average of two pay periods per month and 12 months in a year, becomes a

donation of 24 hours of salary over the course of the year. By the end of the

year, the total donation is significant to both Kainos and the donor.

Kainos serves hundreds of developmentally disabled clients through

its vocational and residential programs and, through work placement

opportunities throughout the community, the organization impacts countless

thousands more. If you shop at local Safeway, Lucky or Whole Foods grocery

stores or patronize businesses like Planet Pooch or Kohlweiss, the odds are

that you have met, or been helped by, a member of the Kainos community

without even knowing it. Kainos clients work in many of our local

businesses, live in independent and assisted living environments throughout

the community and are often seen enjoying the city’s public events. You’ve

probably bought water or popcorn from a Kainos client at one of the

downtown concerts. All of the organization’s services are provided through a

variety of governmental funding sources as well as private donations.

Because of Kainos’ deep connections throughout the community, the

Wrights were quickly joined in the 24-Hour Challenge by former Redwood

City Mayor Dani Gasparini, current City Council Member Ian Bain,

community members Cheryl Monroe and Kennedy Golden and many others.

“Many Challenge donors choose to give by automated bi-weekly bank

transfer, while others plan to make regular credit card or check payments.

It’s completely up to the donor,” noted Kainos Development Director Kristen

Uthman. “It doesn’t even have to be an hourly salary. We have businesses and

retired donors who have simply opted to name an amount they wish to give

every other week.”

Kainos hopes that even those who aren’t aware that they have a direct

connection to the agency or those it serves will understand its impact

throughout the community and consider giving to the Challenge.

“One hour every two weeks feels like a drop in the bucket,” commented

the Wrights. “But if you’ve ever had a leak in your roof, you know that those

drops add up and soon the bucket is full. This is something we can easily do

that will make a difference in the community. Why wouldn’t we?”

Those interested in learning more about Kainos Home and Training Center

or the Kainos 24-Hour Challenge can visit

City Council Appoints Bob Bell as Permanent City Manager

The City Council announced the appointment of Robert (Bob) Bell to

the position of city manager. Bell has served in the interim position since

November. Since serving in this role, according to city spokesman Malcolm

Smith, Bell has demonstrated strong leadership by working with the city’s

labor groups and department-head team in restructuring benefit and pension

programs to reduce costs. He is also spearheading an organizational analysis

to streamline and add efficiencies to government operations.

The City Council had initially embarked on recruitment for the city

manager position, but as Bell served in the interim role it became clear that

his leadership ability was producing the necessary results for the organization

and community. Mayor Ira stated, “The City Council, department-head team,

employees and community members have been very complimentary of Bob

in the position of interim city manager. The City Council decided it was

in the best interests of the city to maintain stability with a leader who was

already proving his effectiveness in leading and developing the organization

in the right direction.”

Bell has been with Redwood City for over five years as the city’s human

resources director and was also in the rotational assignment of assistant city

manager for over two years. During that time, he articulated a strong vision

for the organization to the City Council based on principles of customer

service, efficient service delivery and responsiveness to community needs.

He described it to the council as “Government Best by Climate Test” and Bell

is committed to leading an organization that is responsive and accountable.

Prior to coming to Redwood City, Bell was the human resources director for

Burlingame. Bell has a doctorate in organizational leadership from the University

of San Francisco and he holds a master’s degree in public administration

from California State University, Northridge. Bell was the 2005 recipient of

the career leadership award from the League of California Cities.

Vice Mayor Aguirre summed up: “The council is excited to have Bob as

our next city manager and have him take the organization to the next level.”

The Spectrum 21

Rider Information:

Dudley Perkins Harley Davidson &

Golden Gate HOG Chapter

Present the

7th Annual Redwood City Poker Run

Saturday, May 14th, 2011

Benefiting the Youth of San Mateo County

Driver Name:____________________________PassengerName:________________________



Best Contact Phone Number:_____________________________________________________

Please check all that apply.

Early Registration (Prior to April 29th, 2011)

(Check all that apply.)

_____ $25 per Motorcycle ($30 with Passenger )

_____ $10 Additional T-shirt

_____ $5 Additional Ride Patch

Registration Fee includes:

1 Ride T-Shirt per bike, 1 Ride Patch,

BBQ lunch, Poker Hand, and Raffle Ticket.

Passenger recieves BBQ lunch only.

$_____ TOTAL

Registration After April 29th, 2011 ($30 per Motorcycle, $40 with Passenger)


Day of Ride Information:

Start Location:

Dudley Perkins, Co. (333 Corey Way, SFF) NEW ROUTE



Ride out:

10am Sharp

End of Ride/BBQ Lunch: Sparky’s Hot Rod Garage (975 Industrial, Suite B)

Length of Ride:

Approx. 100 miles (1 gas stop)

Make all checks payable to Redwood City Police Activities League

Mail payment and Registraion Form to Redwood City Poker Run

P.O. Box 5037 Redwood City, Ca 94063. For more information,

please call Alpio Barbara at 650.245.4653 or email at

The Spectrum 23

Millie Cole Honored for Her Decades of Volunteerism

One would think that to have accomplished and

volunteered as much as Mille Cole has, she must

have lived twice as many years as she actually has. But

at 90 years young, Cole has given countless hours

of time and enthusiasm back to the community,

service that was honored at the annual Sequoia

Awards Banquet on March 17, which honors

outstanding volunteerism in the community.

A 67-year resident of Redwood City, Cole said

she enjoys not only volunteering but helping others,

especially the youth, volunteer in their communities.

“It just feels so good to volunteer,” the active

Optimist Club member and president said.

“Everyone has the spirit of volunteerism in them.”

Under this tenet, Cole helped spur the spirit of

volunteerism in the youth in the community. She

embodied the Optimist Club’s motto, “Bringing

Out the Best in Kids,” when she helped start

the Junior Optimist Clubs at McKinley Middle

School, Kennedy Middle School and North Star

Academy and the Octagon Clubs at Menlo-

Atherton, Sequoia and Woodside high schools.

She has been active in the Woodside Octagon

Club for 17 years.

“This award is long overdue,” said Dennis

McBride, a parent of two of the students she

helped mentor at the Octagon Club. “She does all

of her volunteerism with a huge smile and always

downplays her role.”

Cole said she loves to see young people continually

volunteering. When she tried to organize a Second

Harvest Food Bank event for the 85-member

Octagon Club at Woodside High School, the food

bank organizers told her she’d have to wait until

April because they were booked.

“Volunteerism is alive and well even in this

fast-paced society,” she said. “I’m just sorry I

didn’t plan this sooner!”

Parents of students in the club recognize Cole’s

dedication and constant efforts as a primary

reason their children love volunteering.

The club teaches them leadership and

responsibility, giving back to the community and

thinking about the world in a larger context,”

McBride said.

Octagon Club members volunteer at events such

as clean-ups at Venice Beach, Edgewood Park and

Stulsaft Park.

While youth have plenty of opportunities to

volunteer today, Cole had to make an effort back

when she was a young woman.

Originally, the bylaws of the Optimist Club

applied specifically to “men.” But in 1987, when

that one word was switched to “adults,” Cole’s

husband was able to invite her to join. She became

the first female Redwood City Optimist member,

a sponsorship that sparked national debate in a club

that traditionally allowed only male members.

Once Cole was initiated into the club, she took

it by storm. She went on to become the president,

the first female to do so, and is still an active

member. Her role expanded further when she

became lieutenant governor of the Pacific Central

District Optimist International and the first

female governor of the Pacific Central District

(Northern California, Nevada and Utah). She was

the sergeant-at-arms at six Optimist International

conventions, the first female to assume this role.

She formed the Woodside Terrace Optimist Club

in 1992 and is the current president.

But even before her role in the Optimist Club,

volunteering had always been a steadfast part of

Cole’s life. After years as a professional dancer,

she took a reprieve to raise her four sons and one

daughter. Not surprisingly, she was a Cub Scouts

den leader for her boys and a Brownies and Girl

Scout leader for her daughter.

After her reprieve from the labor force, Cole went

back to work in another capacity: teaching. She

was a first-grade teacher at Selby Lane for 11 years,

the best part being her students’ eagerness to learn.

“Everything about Millie exudes goodness,

sincerity and effort,” said Kathleen Coughlin, a

Woodside High School teacher. “Millie embodies

“Everyone has the spirit of

volunteerism in them”

the definition of optimism.”

Cole would visit the students’ homes before

the school year began in order to get to know her

students better.

The families’ involvement in their children’s

education was astonishing,” she added. “The

entire neighborhood would turn out at one

family’s home, saying ‘La Maestra is coming!’”

As with any activity she ever endeavored, Cole

invested the maximum amount of effort she could.

In addition to teaching, she was on the PTA board

for Hoover, Roosevelt, Kennedy and Sequoia

High School. She served on the San Mateo

County Retired Teachers Association board for

many years and as president from 1994 to 1996.

But while teaching, Cole never put volunteering

on the back burner.

She still helps organize the Optimist

Volunteers for Youth Camp, a camp program

for disadvantaged youth 10 to 13 years old. The

94-acre campsite in La Honda has been offering

programs for 50 years.

“I probably need to pray that I would have her

kind of energy and spirit, as I am now half her age,”

Coughlin said. “Come to think of it, I have no

doubt that that’s how she’s gotten to where she is.”

Editor’s note: This article, written by Stacie Chan, appeared

first on

Cole honored by Mayor Jeff Ira. Cole and cover subject

Sonia Picone.


for Supervisor

11GF0324_papanad_4.indd 1

3/24/11 4:44 PM

The Spectrum 25

Auto Care:

Redwood General Tire – 1630 Broadway –

Following the principles of good customer service

and quality products at fair prices, Alpio Barbara

and the crew at Redwood General Tire keep

satisfying customers year after year. Whether

you are looking for a new set of tires or need

repair work on your vehicle, this Redwood City

institution has been providing quality vehicle

services since 1957.

Eating and Catering:

Canyon Inn – 587 Canyon Road – Tim Harrison

and the staff at Canyon Inn serve everything from

their famous hamburgers to pizzas, all kinds of

sandwiches and pastas, and South-of-the-Border

specialties while various sports play on the big,

flat-screen TVs. Don’t forget to reserve their

closed patio for your next party — it has heaters,

fans and a big-screen TV (no extra charges). Why

cook when you don’t have to? They do catering

too for all occasions!

Deseo Tequila Lounge and Restaurant – 851

Main St. – “We went there and it was fabulous!

We were impressed by their food menu, and the

burger I had was tasty. They have 21 big-screen

TVs for watching your favorite sports team,

having a drink with friends or dancing the night away.”

Little India – 917 Main St. – “There are good

restaurants. There are bad restaurants. There

are OK restaurants. Then there are those places,

the magic ones. You come back again and again

because the food doesn’t just taste good and

satisfy hunger, but helps heal the heart and soul.”

Senior citizens receive $1 off and children under

12 dine at half price.

Financial Institutions:

San Mateo Credit Union – Three Redwood City

locations – As a member-driven organization,

SMCU does everything possible to ensure that

all of your financial priorities are anticipated and

fulfilled. Offerings include free auto-shopping

assistance, members-only car sales, low-rate

home loans and lines of credit. Call 650-363-1725

or 888-363-1725, or visit a branch to learn the

advantages of membership banking.

Home Improvements:

Lewis Carpet Cleaners – 1-800-23-LEWIS –

Founded in 1985, Lewis Carpet Cleaners has grown

from one small, portable machine to a company of

six employees and five working vans. The Lewis

family works and lives in Redwood City and is

committed to our community. Ask about their

Spectrum special: Get 100 square feet of carpet

cleaned for absolutely nothing. Call today! Get

your home ready for entertaining during the year.

Legal Services:

Hannig Law Firm – 2991 El Camino Real –

Hannig Law Firm LLP provides transactional

and litigation expertise in a variety of areas. The

professionals at HLF are committed to knowing

and meeting their clients’ needs through longterm

relationships and value-added services,

and to supporting and participating in the

communities where they live and work.

Real Estate:

Michelle Glaubert at Coldwell Banker

– 650-722-1193 – Michelle has been a fulltime,

top-producing real estate agent since

1978. With a proven track record, she has

helped buyers achieve their dreams of home

ownership and sellers make successful moves

to their next properties. The majority of her

business is garnered through referrals from

her many satisfied clients. Living in Emerald

Hills, she knows the area well and is involved

in the community. Count on Michelle’s years

of experience to guide you through your next

real estate transaction. Visit her online at www.

Jim Massey at Keller Williams – 650-207-5120

– Jim has been active for over 30 years in business

and leadership in Redwood City. With that

Advertise with

The Spectrum

Call Us Today


involvement, he has become a real estate agent

familiar with our community, and his clients feel

comfortable knowing he has that expertise and

knowledge to guide them. Visit him online at

John Nelson at Coldwell Banker – 650-566-5315

– John has been a resident of Redwood City for

21 years and has been a real estate agent for 18

years. He is known for doing his clients’ legwork,

keeping them up to date with new listings and

conditions as they impact the market. He will

make the process as pleasurable and stress-free an

experience for you as he can. Let John guide you

through the complexities of buying or selling your

home, eliminating hassles and stress. Visit him

online at

Specialty Businesses:

Davies Appliance – 1580 El Camino Real –

“Davies helped me with my appliance purchases

and they know what they are doing. All they

carry is appliances; you don’t have to worry about

anything else. Leave it to them to assist you with

your kitchen remodel and you will be very happy.

I recommend Davies to anyone who is interested

in great pricing and even better service. The focus

is appliances and service.”

Every Woman Health Club – 611 Jefferson Ave.

– A women-only, body-positive fitness center

in downtown Redwood City. Services include

classes, weight and cardio equipment, personal

training, therapeutic massage and skin care.

Flexible pricing, with several options available

for members and nonmembers. Visit www. or call 650-364-9194

to get started.

Hector Flamenco Insurance (State Farm) –

956 Main St. – Hector has been in the insurance

business and with State Farm for 20 years. He

specializes in auto and business insurance. A local

resident, he also provides servicio en español!

Visit his website at

Saf Keep Storage – 2480 Middlefield Road – The

friendly and reliable team at Saf Keep is ready

to assist you with a variety of storage products

and services to suit all your storage needs. Visit

their website at to see

exactly what products and services are available.

Compare them to other facilities and you’ll see

why their service makes the difference.

Schoenstein Physical Therapy – 363A Main

St., 650-599-9482 –The clinical approach of

this independent, community-based physical

therapy practice focuses on thorough physical

therapy assessment, specific treatment strategies

and patient education. Individualized treatment

programs are designed to help meet patient

goals of restoring function, returning to sport or

occupation and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

St. Regal Jewelers – 850 Main St. – “This is a

great jeweler! Phil, the owner, is amazing. He

crafted a ring on time and on budget. He has an

incredible eye for detail. I can’t say enough. I

would never go anywhere else.” Whether you are

looking for men’s or women’s quality jewelry,

shopping local does not get better than this.

Woodside Terrace – 485 Woodside Road, 650-

366-3900 – Woodside Terrace understands that

in choosing a senior living community, residents

are looking for much more than a comfortable

living environment to call home. Brookdale

Living’s Redwood City community delivers

inspired independent living with the promise of

exceptional experiences every day. As residents’

needs change, they are provided with a variety

of ancillary services and a personalized assisted

living environment that encourages them to

continue to live as they please.

The Spectrum 27

As I Was Saying… (Continued from p6)

Speaking of leaving, Bob’s Court House Coffee Shop has officially closed its

doors. Yes, after 21 years on Broadway, Bob and Irene Bryant have decided

to retire and enjoy the results of their hard work and success. I remember in

the days when I first came on to the scene, Bob’s was the place to see and be

seen. Bob’s served as a place for community leaders and politicians to gather

during the day, no matter what time, and mingle. I first met Bob Bury, Bill

Stangel, Judge Frank Piombo and so many more there. Needless to say, it

was fun and the food wasn’t bad either.

We really don’t have that kind of place anymore. It is rare you see an

elected official (except for county ones) out to lunch in our community or

for that matter just somewhere meeting residents and talking and discussing

issues. To do that, you have to attend fundraisers or events of that sort, and

that eliminates most of our community from having that personal touch with

them. It’s just the way it is.

Through the years, Bob’s went through many changes. Most notably,

a move from the corner of Hamilton to the corner of Middlefield and the

entire redevelopment of the area. Moving to the spot will be a new restaurant

described as a “Benihana” type with sushi. Bob and Irene will be missed, but

they will still be in the community because they live here. Wonder where they

will be going for breakfast? Best of luck!


Some other changes in the downtown area include the soon-to-be-opening

Sandwich Stop on Broadway and a New Vietnamese restaurant on Hamilton.

The Club Mayan on Broadway will now be Club Rio (hopefully that will calm

the crowd down) and one of our only retail shops, Skateworks, has closed.


One of the best aspects of my job is attending events that honor those who

really are making a difference in not only our community but the world. One

such event this year was the San Mateo County Women’s Hall of Fame awards

dinner. The event honors women in our county who are doing extraordinary

things. Redwood City was very well represented, with several tables filled

by those supporting two honorees from our community, Raegene Castle and

Karen Schwarz. Both women have impressive resumes of service and going

beyond the norms to better the lives of so many others. They are both fantastic

women and I am so honored know them.

When attending these types of events, I am always inspired to do more,

inspired to ask others to step up, and inspired to be all that I can be. I know it

sounds corny, but that is how I feel. I thank women like Raegene and Karen

and so many other men and women in our community who inspire me to be

more than I thought. How about you?

You ready to get involved?

As I was saying…


Advertise with The Spectrum

Call Us Today 650.368.2434

Insurance Tips: Tips for Buying a New Home

By Hector Flamenco, Special to The Spectrum

Buying a new home can be a daunting task, even

for someone who has owned several homes. If you

recently purchased your first home, you probably

found that it is hard to find good advice that is truly

useful. Here are some helpful hints I’ve picked up

along the way:

1. Use all of the online resources available.

Almost every state and local government has a website where you can

research real estate information. The data on home sales, taxes and

neighborhoods is invaluable when you are shopping for a home. I was able

to find out the most recent sale prices in the neighborhood I selected, and

I didn’t have to rely on a real estate agent to get the data for me. Doing the

research yourself will make you more knowledgeable about the market,

which is key to making a good purchase.

2. Be realistic about how much you can spend.

Try to buy a home in a price range that allows you to put down 20 percent.

If you put down less than this, you will have to pay PMI (private mortgage

insurance) to protect the lender in case you default on the loan. I know that 20

percent is a lot, but it’s not unrealistic. You may not be able to do it on your

first home, but hopefully you can on your second home. If you can, save some

money for the unexpected expenses that come with buying a home as well.

3. Shop for a home in the winter, preferably around the holidays.

Since most people just aren’t interested in buying a home when they are

trying to deal with the holidays, there are fewer buyers out there. I bought my

home right before Christmas, and it was definitely a buyers’ market. I had my

pick of homes and was able to underbid on the asking price, even though I

live in one of the hottest real estate markets in the country.

4. Use a smaller mortgage company that can offer personal service.

People tend to go with large, well-known mortgage companies because

that’s all they know. But the smaller, regional companies provide excellent

customer service and can often give you better rates than the big companies.

Since they don’t advertise and instead rely on word of mouth, they have to be

good in order to get your service.

5. Always have a home inspection.

I think most people know this fact already, but it is really important in areas

with a hot real estate market. It can be easy to get caught up in bidding

wars and to want to get a house at all costs. Some friends of mine wanted

a house so badly that not only did they overbid, but they also waived the

home inspection. They got the house — and right along with it they got

several thousand dollars worth of damage that would have been found in an


6. Save money and shop for your home insurance the easy way!

Yeah, I know this is a shameless plug for my business, but seriously, whatever

insurance broker you do use, get on the phone and shop around for your home

insurance. You can get multiple home insurance quotes from me or any of a

dozen or so reputable companies in the Redwood City area, and then you can

decide for yourself who is the best.

As a final note, try to remember that buying a home doesn’t have to be scary.

It’s very exciting to own your own home, so think of all the good things that

will come once you have made it through the home-buying process. If you

follow the advice above, then you should be well-equipped to make it through


Editor’s note: This article is for general information only and is not a professional consultation.

Always seek specific information from a licensed insurance professional. Hector Flamenco is

an agent with State Farm Insurance. Visit his website at

Senior Activities

The following activities are open to the public during the month of April at

the Veterans Memorial Senior Center, 1455 Madison Ave., Redwood City.

Friday Movies for Everyone

Every Friday, 1:15 p.m. (unless otherwise announced)

Come to the Veterans Memorial Senior Center in March for a free feature

movie in our state-of-the-art movie theater!

April 1: “Burlesque”

April 8: “The Switch”

April 15: “The Next Three Days”

April 22: “The Tourist”

April 29: “The King’s Speech”

Tax Preparation Appointments (Sponsored by AARP)

AARP is providing free tax preparation at the VMSC by appointment only.

Appointments will be held Wednesdays through April 13, from 9 a.m. to 3

p.m. Call 650-489-6023 to make your appointment. Appointments can be

made only by calling this number.

Feel Good Workshop — In Spite of Grief

Presented by Nicole Boulanger

Tuesdays, April 5 through May 3

All five sessions for $25

This workshop is designed to alter your way of thinking about daily events

and past memories. Call 650-780-7274 to sign up.

AARP Driver Safety Class

Saturdays, May 14 & May 21, 9 a.m.–1 p.m.

Room 20, Wellness Building

AARP members $12, nonmembers $14

This is an eight-hour class over two Saturdays. Call 650-780-7270 and press

option 2; leave your name and number, and your call will be returned to

confirm your spot. You must attend both sessions to obtain a certificate.

Veterans Honorary Luncheon

Friday, May 27, 12 p.m.

Redwood Room

Honor our troops during this honorary luncheon. Veterans are encouraged

to bring stories and memorabilia. There will be an opportunity drawing and

gifts will be offered. Special gifts for the first 25 people who sign up. Call

650-780-7343 to sign up.

Adaptive PE Classes

Weekly: Mondays through Fridays

A fitness program for you! Our program is designed for individuals at all

levels of ability, including those with limitations and disabilities. The longterm

goal is to increase the level of function and wellness of all participants.

Come join a great group of people in a great program. Call 650-368-7732 for

more information.

To learn more about the Veterans Memorial Senior Center, call 650-780-

7270. Redwood City Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department

provides recreational facilities and activities for all ages and interests, and

supplies building and custodial services for city buildings. Redwood City

Parks also operates the Veterans Memorial Senior Center and the Fair Oaks

Community Center, providing social, educational and cultural activities, as

well as information, referral and counseling services to persons living in

Redwood City and neighboring communities. Redwood City Parks is more

than you think! Its website is located at

The Spectrum 29

A Minute With: Bob Bell

Bob Bell was born in Oakland and grew up in San Lorenzo and Castro Valley.

He attended and graduated from Pacific High School in San Leandro in 1981. While there,

he was the editor of the yearbook, was involved in student body government and did the

triple jump in track.

Bob earned a doctorate in organizational leadership from the University of San

Francisco. He also holds a master’s degree in public administration from California State

University, Northridge.

He was the human resources manager for the City of Foster City and then for the City of

Burlingame from 2000 to 2005. He joined the City of Redwood City team in 2005 as human

resources director. He served a dual role from 2007 till 2010 as assistant city manager.

Bob was the 2005 recipient of the career leadership award from the League of California

Cities. He is a member of the League of California Cities, governing board president of San

Mateo County Training Consortium and a member of the Inter City Managers Association.

Bob’s hobbies include exercising, running with his dogs and playing basketball on weekends.

Congratulations! Are you ready?


Looking forward to?

Finishing the budget process.

Redwood City is?

Full of great people.

Whom do you most admire?

My mother, Bettie.

What talent would you most like to have?

Wish I could sing, but…

Something few know about you?

I love to eat Mexican food.

What phrase do you most overuse?


Favorite song?

“Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen. A lot of


Favorite movie?

“Inception,” with Leonardo DiCaprio.

What is your motto?

I don’t have one.

Anyone you got on your mind?

Not at the moment.

Memorable moment?

When asked to serve as interim city manager.

You still can’t believe?

It was warm all week, and today (Saturday) it is

gray and cold.

You currently feel?


You are inspired by?

The people I work with.

What or who is the love of your life?

My partner, Eric.

When you die, you want to come back as?

A bird, so I can fly all over the place.

If you’re happy and you know it?

Clap your hands.

Every Woman’s

Place for Fitness

• Friendly, helpful staff

• Classes for all fitness levels

• Personal training

• Spa services

10 Visits

for only $90

Purchase a 10-visit punch

card to use toward classes

or equipment.

Spa Services

Facials, waxings, Reiki,

therapeutic massage,

acupressure, and more

Services provided by

appointment only. Call to

schedule your treatment!

Join Us

for Classes

Belly Dance, Strength Training,

Pilates Sculpt, Yoga, and more!

Open to members

and non-members.

650-364-9194 611 Jefferson Ave., Redwood City, CA 94063

The Spectrum 31

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