Monday, February 23, 2009
Our kids: keeping up with where they are now
Nothing makes me feel better than to see our Bakersfield kids - from North and Stockdale and West and BHS and all the rest - succeeding and thriving. These are the same kids who gave us headaches and heartbreak in their teen years but now make our hearts swell with pride. Was sorry I missed the quick visit this past week of Robby McCarthy, son of Rob and Judi McCarthy. (Rob owns Lightspeed Systems and Judi is founder of the Women's and Girls' Fund of Kern County). Robby (pictured) now works in Washington, D.C. for Congressman Kevin McCarthy (no relation) and is having a ball. He was in the district helping with the annual Lincoln Day dinner and "working the district" to hear complaints and concerns from constituents. Robby graduated from Garces High School and later USC. He brought along a congressional intern named Freddy Barnes, son of Fred Barnes, editor of the conservative Weekly Standard and a regular on the Fox News network.
I also had lunch last week with Ray Dezember, the retired banker affectionately known as "Mr. Bakersfield" in recognition of his involvement in the community. Ray and wife Joan just returned from a long trip overseas that included a visit to Taipei where grand-daughter Suzy Dezember is now teaching English. One of Brent and Anna Dezember's girls, Suzy also graduated from Garces and later LMU. Ray was proud to say that Michelle, Suzy's sister and a graduate of Santa Clara, is working and living in Barcelona. Meanwhile, I hear Erica Smith (BHS and University of Arizona) is now in grad school at USC, which makes her father, retired endodontist and Trojan Bob Smith, happy. And finally, Leonard Bidart, owner of Bidart Brothers Farms, tells me his elder daughter Breanna (BHS and USC) is now living and working in Boston. So much talent and so much to be proud of.
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It would be interesting to track where some of the top kids from the local "We the People" programs have landed. I know many are working in goverment/law/politics/policy and were inspired by their experiences in that program.
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