A Glimpse in their Lives
Chuck Huggins is best known as the longtime president/ CEO of See's Candies, Inc., but could also be described as a "man for all seasons."
Along with his corporate achievements, he is a community and civic leader, a philanthropist, strong family man and lifetime jazz aficionado.
Raised in Portland, Ore., Higgins served as a U.S Army paratrooper in World War II. He then attended Kenyon college in Gambier, Ohio, receiving his degree in English Literature in 1949.
After college, he and his young wife, Marian (better known as Mime) headed West. In 1951, he began his half-century-plus relationship with See's candies, first as manager of the company's packaging department and followed by every other position in the organization until he was named president/ CEO in 1972.
Today, the company hs more than 5,000 employees and 200-plus stores throughout the western United States and sales revenues in excess of $300 million.
Gertrude Wilks' non-narrative resume simply lists her career activities, workshops and seminars, current and past activities, awards and honors -- stretching it out to six closely typed pages.
"I thought I could change the world," she said. And Wilks is not finished trying. At 75, the longtime East Palo Alto resident continues to serve on community boards organize willing hands and minds.
Born in Duboc, La. to a poor, struggling black sharecropper family, she learned quickly about hard work. She also learned about "making a way out of no way."
She met her husband, Otis, as a teenager and they married when she was just 17. The two told no one of their marriage until she graduated from high school in 1947. That marriage would last for 54 years and through three children and several foster children.
Perhaps her best-known roles were as director and founder of Mothers for Equal Education in East Palo Alto, which eventually led to her becoming director of a small private school in that community known as the Nairobi Day and High School.
Andy Doty and his family arrived in Palo Alto in 1963, ready to take a position at Stanford University to do "general public relations stuff." Within a few years of that quiet start, Doty became a very public presence.
As a principal spokesperson for Stanford University, he became the bridge between Stanford and the surrounding communities. When Doty retired from Stanford in 1993, the Palo Alto City Council praised his integrity and success in improving relations between the university and the community.
As director of community relations at Stanford, Doty realized effective communication between Stanford and its surrounding communities could only occur if he actually left campus.
"I found early on at Stanford that I should really know what the community was thinking and the best way for doing that was to get out in the community.
A historian who understands economics and financeA longtime member and past president of the Stanford Historical Society, Rosemary McAndrews was named one of the university's "most unforgettable personalities of the past 25 years" in a poll of the society's members held last year.
According to the society's current president, Bob Hamrdla, "Rosemary is eminently sensible. She is a straight talker who says what she means and I have a lot of respect for her viewpoint. She has been a splendid contributor to the society, bringing to its board a valuable understanding of economics and finance -- not something historians are generally known for!"
Aside from the historical society, Rosemary has lent her talents and expertise to a number of other academic, government and arts organizations.
She was also a member of the Avenidas board for six years, retiring in 2000. "We agonized for some time over the change of name from the Senior Coordinating Council to Avenidas," she said. "We wanted to drop the slightly pejorative 'senior,' and finally decided on the word for avenue, which also translates to a way or path."
Palo Alto is fortunate to have Avenidas, she said. "It is not
Residents remembers Palo Alto's simpler timesAllan Brown has done much to change the face of the Midpeninsula -- and much to preserve the way it was.
Born and raised during a time when chicken farms thrived along Middlefield Road, Brown's roots go deep in Palo Alto. He was born in 1927 and with his four brothers -- Bob, Lawrence, Dan and Donal -- roamed the region of open fields, creeks and wooded canyons in the hills.
Brown and his brother, Bob, took over the Vance M. Brown & Sons construction firm after the early death of their father in 1956, and maintained the company -- now managed by one of Bob's sons, Loren -- as Vance Brown Inc. Long committed to environmental and social causes, including efforts to promote jobs and improve social services for East-of-Bayshore communities, Brown's commitments increased after he reduced his management role in the construction/property management business in 1990.
A good friend to music and the artsWith a pink flower tucked in her snow-white hair, Shirley Kelley stood out from the rest of the crowd. Tall and slim, this fourth-generation Californian is a well-known Bay Area native. Along with her husband, Ryland, the two are not only great supporters of music and arts in the area, but have served on several boards of various local nonprofit organizations.
Born in San Mateo in 1926, Kelley spent her youth outdoors -- swimming, hiking, biking and roller-skating. She remembers family trips to the stadium to watch Stanford play. Her father, even though a UC Berkeley graduate, loved Stanford's football team.
After graduating from Burlingame High School, the 16-year-old Kelley went around the corner to Stanford University to study communications and political science. "I loved writing and politics, so that was the right choice for me," she said.