A Glimpse in their Lives
A framed family portrait awaited packing among piles
of papers and moving boxes in Margaret Abe’s three bedroom Los Altos Hills home. After years of living
in the hills, she was downsizing to a smaller, downtown
condo. Items piled in packed boxes reflected Abe’s significant contributions to Santa Clara County. Her home’s walls were barren of the photographs and Japanese block prints that once adorned them and the floors empty of Tansu furniture, but in the boxes sat a folder of newspaper clips highlighting her work throughout the years.
She is humble about her eclectic array of accomplishments
that have earned her the Avenidas Lifetimes of
Dr. Margaret Deanesly, known as “Dr. Margaret” by
her affectionate audiences, has an extensive list of
accomplishments under her name: two medical degrees
from McGill University in Montreal; a sought-after
speaker at institutions, universities, societies and organizations all over the world; medical director at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center for 15 years; and physician for several companies, including the Palo Alto Medical Clinic.
Now, after more than 40 years of charitable work in medicine, she is an honoree of the Lifetimes of Achievement award.
For the past 45 years, Dr. Harry Hartzell has been helping
children become healthy, opening their eyes to see
who they can become and showing them the steps they
need to take to achieve personal goals.
A pediatrician at the Stanford Medical School and at the
Palo Alto Clinic from 1961 to 1997 and a volunteer with
several children’s organizations, Hartzell has left his mark
on youth, many of whom have gone on to be leaders in their professions. For this body of work, he is receiving the Avenidas Lifetimes of Achievement Award. If Hartzell has
As a child growing up in rural India, Bob Smithwick,
the son of missionaries, watched his mother found
and organize a village’s first clinic — despite having
no training in medicine.
Since then, her one-room shack made of bamboo and
dried cow dung has become a big-city hospital.
“Just another example of how something small can grow
into something special,” said Smithwick, now a trim, goodnatured 86 year old with a wry smile.
The experience had a huge impact on Smithwick, who
Shirley Matteson looked out the sunroom window of her
opulent hilltop home recently, pondering the successes
of her 70 years.
By anyone’s standards, she and husband Duncan have done
well. The Menlo Park couple have a thriving real estate business, two homes, a 50-year marriage, two grown children and five grandchildren.
But giving to others is what’s made for a satisfied life.
Sitting in the Palo Alto Children’s Theatre recently, director Pat Briggs’ cool and composed expression turned
into a youthful, chuckle-filled smile. Her young actors
had just burst into giddy excitement when told they could hide in the audience as part of their staging.
Longtime director of Palo Alto Children’s Theatre and current co-head of the City of Palo Alto’s Arts and Culture Division, Briggs has influenced three generations of Palo Alto residents. She has directed more than 450 theater