Martinez CA – Martinez Tribune https://martineztribune.com The website of the Martinez Tribune. Mon, 15 May 2017 16:31:36 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.4 Part 5: Happy 100th Birthday City Hall Building! https://martineztribune.com/2017/05/15/part-5-happy-100th-birthday-city-hall-building/ Mon, 15 May 2017 16:31:36 +0000 https://martineztribune.com/?p=7320 By KRISTIN HENDERSON Special to the Tribune Gentle Reader:  You have inspired me in this, the 100th year of 525 Henrietta Street to nominate, and hopefully list on the National Register of Historic Places, the City of Martinez Grammar School/City Hall. Is that not a nice birthday present?  In 1992, Page and Turnbull felt there was …

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By KRISTIN HENDERSON
Special to the Tribune

Gentle Reader:

 You have inspired me in this, the 100th year of 525 Henrietta Street to nominate, and hopefully list on the National Register of Historic Places, the City of Martinez Grammar School/City Hall. Is that not a nice birthday present?

 In 1992, Page and Turnbull felt there was enough architectural integrity to make the National Register. However, a Mr. Kite decided otherwise and so the building remains officially found to be not historic. However, buildings can be recorded as such for reasons having to do with inaccurate documentation, etc., and then found to be historic after all. The Borland Home is one example.

 This will be my biggest gamble to date. Anyone wishing to help with a National Register of Historic Places listing can email me. Exterior photography would be a good start and it has to be done how they want it. City Hall is a difficult building to get exterior shots as it is.

 But before we move on, let us remember:

  • Martinez City Hall was built in 1917 in Prairie School style as designed by Stone & Wright.
  • Prairie School is an authentic American architecture that celebrates the open spaces of the Midwest and resulted from the building opportunities the Great Chicago fire presented.
  • Frank Lloyd Wright is considered the father of Prairie School Architecture.
  • We did not go over this, but Page and Turnbull identified a “Sullivanesque” characteristic in City Hall’s architecture. Frank Lloyd Wright was mentored by Louis Sullivan who is known as the father of modernism and the father of sky scrapers. Sullivan is a major inspiration to the Prairie School of Architects.
  • Brick and terra cotta manufactured by Livermore Bricks.
  • Housed K-5 in about nine classrooms.
  • Bought and inhabited by the City of Martinez by 1955.
  • The 1989 earthquake caused consideration of the seismic health of 525 Henrietta.
  • Three sides of the building’s brick facade were almost removed but the town and the Design and Planning Commissions fought to keep the historic elements and won while overseeing a retrofit, expansion, and modernization of City Hall.
  • Mario Menesini exclaimed, “And I went to school here!” upon his son’s reelection to City Council in 2006.  

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D’Atri & Tria run to record board for Bulldog track team https://martineztribune.com/2017/05/05/datri-tria-run-to-record-board-for-bulldog-track-team/ Fri, 05 May 2017 10:43:12 +0000 https://martineztribune.com/?p=7282 By GERARDO RECINOS Martinez Tribune The Bulldog track team went over to Walnut Creek’s Northgate High for the season’s last dual meet, this past Wednesday, April 26. With the season’s end quickly approaching, the Dogs knew there was limited time left to grab some more personal records. Marissa D’Atri, who has run entirely alone in …

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Alhambra freshman Carson Edwards took fourth place overall in the 1600-meter race against setting a new personal record in the process at Northgate on April 26, 2017. (MARK FIERNER / Martinez Tribune)
Alhambra freshman Carson Edwards took fourth place overall in the 1600-meter race against setting a new personal record in the process at Northgate on April 26, 2017. (MARK FIERNER / Martinez Tribune)

By GERARDO RECINOS
Martinez Tribune

The Bulldog track team went over to Walnut Creek’s Northgate High for the season’s last dual meet, this past Wednesday, April 26.

With the season’s end quickly approaching, the Dogs knew there was limited time left to grab some more personal records.

Marissa D’Atri, who has run entirely alone in every dual meet race this year with zero recorded losses, again set the track on fire in the varsity girls 1600 meters.

Previously ranked fourth on the all time Alhambra record board, D’Atri clocked 5 minutes, 10.27 seconds for another easy win and the third-fastest AHS mark ever.

Also rapidly improving, Nicole Tria finished the same race in 5:38.51, a season best.

It is exceedingly rare for Alhambra distance runners to achieve any top 10 marks, but Tria was unfazed. Returning for the girls varsity 3200 meters, she covered the eight laps in a PR of 12:04.90, cutting 15 seconds off her prior time and finishing second to Northgate’s Nichole Markiewicz. As of Tribune deadline, Tria’s time is the tenth-fastest ever from Alhambra.

In the boys 1600-meter race, Northgate’s Michael Wheeler ran a 4:46 for first place, while Bulldogs Robert Viano and Carson Edwards took second and fourth overall.

Viano got some redemption a few events later in the boys 800 meters, winning by a large margin in 2:07.76.

On the sprinters side, Myles Johnson and Zach Smidebush each neared the 12-second barrier in the 100-meter dash, as Johnson (12.06) took third and Smidebush (12.16) fourth.

Ian Palmer and Graham Manning both took to the starting line in the boys 400 meters.

Palmer circled the oval in 54.14 for second place, and Manning was not far back at 56.82 for third.

No one won more events on Wednesday than Christina Cortez, who earned a triple win in the frosh/soph girls 100 (14.10), 200 (29.86) and long jump (13-09.5).

Fellow sprinter and jumper Jenna Coffman brought some much needed assistance to the varsity girls team in her events. Facing some strong Bronco sprinters, she proceeded to set some new personal records in both sprints, going 13.51 in the 100 meter dash and 28.44 in the 200 meters.

Perhaps the Bulldogs were still not tired of winning, because a third all time performance was added in the girls varsity triple jump as Coffman soared to a major PR of 33 feet, 10.5 inches. Her distance is now fifth-farthest on the record board for girls triple jump.

Other Alhambra wins included Kieara Rios (1st place in girls shot put and high jump), and Phoebe Tang (first in girls discus).

Tang also launched the shot 29 feet, 4 inches to end up second to Rios.

Football quarterback Aaron Hern added to his athletic achievements with a significant 11-02 vault in the pole vault competition, the highest Bulldog mark in over 5 years. Finally, Jackson Norried leaped 18-07 for the long jump and 38-02 in triple jump for two more PR’s of his own.

The Bulldogs will battle eleven other teams this Saturday, May 6 at the Diablo Athletic League Championships at Moraga’s Campolindo High School. The top six finalists in each event will qualify for the 2017 NCS Tri-Valley Championships.

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Athlete of the Week: MARC MOORE https://martineztribune.com/2017/05/05/athlete-of-the-week-marc-moore/ Fri, 05 May 2017 09:54:24 +0000 https://martineztribune.com/?p=7288 Athlete of the Week: MARC MOORE Alhambra High School senior Marc Moore is this week’s Tribune Athlete of the Week. Moore, a two-year varsity player, has been one of the team’s best goal-scorers over the last two years. In his first varsity campaign, he scored 27 goals, and with one contest still left to play …

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Athlete of the Week: MARC MOORE

Alhambra High School senior Marc Moore is this week’s Tribune Athlete of the Week.

Moore, a two-year varsity player, has been one of the team’s best goal-scorers over the last two years.

In his first varsity campaign, he scored 27 goals, and with one contest still left to play in his senior season, the attacker has already eclipsed that mark, currently sitting on 30 goals on the season for the Bulldogs.

In recent performances, Moore has been provider as well as scorer.

Even as the second best goal-scorer on the team, Moore can also pass the ball.

In fact, he and teammate Jack Eaves are the top two scorers and assist-men on the team.

Eaves assisted all but one of Moore’s five goals against College Park on May 2, and even though the team lost, the two seniors kept the pressure on the Falcons for a long time before the opponent was able to sit comfortably for a win.

Moore also was key in the ball-handling side of the game as he scooped up five ground balls for the Bulldogs.

He is third on the team in that distinction behind teammate Eaves and sophomore Manny Rodriguez, who leads the team with nearly double the next player in line.

aow-moore

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Martinez Police Blotter: April 26 – May 2, 2017 https://martineztribune.com/2017/05/05/martinez-police-blotter-april-26-may-2-2017/ Fri, 05 May 2017 09:20:54 +0000 https://martineztribune.com/?p=7258 By DANNY YOEONO Martinez Tribune The crime blotter is compiled from public record and is not confirmed by Martinez Police or any other party unless otherwise stated. Some accounts may be unfounded. Wednesday, April 26 At 2:24 a.m., a man was walking up and down Polson Circle with a bike with a red light on …

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By DANNY YOEONO
Martinez Tribune

The crime blotter is compiled from public record and is not confirmed by Martinez Police or any other party unless otherwise stated. Some accounts may be unfounded.

Wednesday, April 26
At 2:24 a.m., a man was walking up and down Polson Circle with a bike with a red light on it by his side. The red light was actually ET phoning home.

At 5:33 a.m., a man with a beard was driving down Orchard View Avenue shining a flashlight into parked car windows.

At 8:53 a.m., a man re-entered CVS with a cane after stealing it and removing the tags moments before.

At 3:20 p.m., two kids stole cough syrup from the Marina Market. I hope they’re feeling better.

At 5:12 p.m., a man in his late 20s walked out of the Virginia Hills Safeway with $200 to $300 in groceries in one cart.

At 5:24 p.m., a man about six foot tall wearing camouflage pants was punching the air on Alhambra Avenue.

At 6:49 p.m., a woman allegedly stabbed her sister in the forehead with a car key causing bleeding. And I thought my brother was bad.

At 10 p.m., a man was aggressive towards his mother on Gilger Avenue.

Thursday, April 27
“Help me,” was heard yelled twice by a male voice from a Brown Street residence at 1 a.m.

A woman dropped off her child at a daycare on Midhill and came back to her car to find her purse and lunchbox stolen at 7:20 a.m., which is much too early for lunch.

A woman reported her boyfriend beating a trash can with a bat at 9:31 a.m. Beating trash cans is the new cross fit.

Friday, April 28
A Ricks Avenue resident found his girlfriend in his driveway at 1:41 a.m. She had a bat.

Saturday, April 29
At 2:10 p.m., a man allegedly stole a pit bull by pouring a milkshake on the owner by the Jack In the Box on Alhambra Avenue.

Around 7 p.m., a woman shoved a man a few times in the Wal-Mart parking lot off Arnold Drive.

At 11:08 p.m., a “big guy” with dark hair at Nu Rays was allegedly intimidating and possibly looking to harm another man.

Sunday, April 30
A man wearing a mask, camouflage pants and a red sweater was possibly taking pictures of children at Hidden Valley Park at 10:13 a.m.

Four men were seen dropping items onto the train tracks near Franklin Canyon Road at 3:10 p.m.

A woman in sunglasses took a bottle of wine without paying for it at the Marina Market at 4:07 p.m.

An argument between a couple was heard on Warren Street at 6:52 p.m. A slap was also heard.

Monday, May 1
A man was yelling at himself for over an hour that ended at 3:25 a.m. He was spotted on Brown Street near the creek sans shirt.

Just before 10 a.m., a man pulled his gray sweatpants down and exposed himself in front of the Main Street Starbucks. Don’t even flash me until I’ve had my coffee.

A man fitting the same description from above was spotted an hour later at the Safeway across from the adult school. His pants were still down and it appeared he may have defecated on himself.

Tuesday, May 2
Around 2 a.m., a man decided Berrellesa Street was the right spot to chill so he stood in the road and did not move for cars wanting to go by.

At 7:17 a.m., a man in dark clothing was harassing Amtrak customers by “saying strange things that don’t make sense.” He was probably saying that hot dogs are a type of sandwich.

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John Muir National Historic Site to participate in ‘Helping Birds Along the Way’ https://martineztribune.com/2017/05/05/john-muir-national-historic-site-to-participate-in-helping-birds-along-the-way/ Fri, 05 May 2017 09:00:01 +0000 https://martineztribune.com/?p=7251 MARTINEZ, Calif. – “Helping Birds Along the Way” is the theme for this year’s International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD), the only international education program that celebrates the migration of nearly 350 bird species.  John Muir National Historic Site will be celebrating IMBD with fun, family-friendly activities such as a Beginning Birding workshop, junior birding activities, …

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MARTINEZ, Calif. – “Helping Birds Along the Way” is the theme for this year’s International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD), the only international education program that celebrates the migration of nearly 350 bird species.  John Muir National Historic Site will be celebrating IMBD with fun, family-friendly activities such as a Beginning Birding workshop, junior birding activities, crafts, and other educational materials to learn about birds and their native habitat.

The celebration will be held on the John Muir NHS grounds from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, May 13. Admission and parking are free, and participants are welcome to stay and explore the house and grounds during and after their visit.

There will also be a bird count led by the Mount Diablo Audubon Society on nearby Mount Wanda the same morning, beginning at 8:30 a.m. For more information on the bird count, visit: https://www.diabloaudubon.org/cgi-bin/calendar/calendar.pl?view=Event&event_id=5403.

For more information, please visit the park website at www.nps.gov/jomu, like them on Facebook, call (925) 228-8860 or email sierra_mathias@partner.nps.gov.

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Lady Bulldogs beat down by 19th-ranked Sheldon-Sacramento https://martineztribune.com/2017/05/05/lady-bulldogs-beat-down-by-19th-ranked-sheldon-sacramento/ Fri, 05 May 2017 08:25:27 +0000 https://martineztribune.com/?p=7276 By GERARDO RECINOS Martinez Tribune Earlier this season, Alhambra’s girls lost their first home game in over four years. Now they’ve lost their second. Sheldon-Sacramento were no slouches. The Huskies dropped a ton of runs in a strong hitting display, downing the Lady Bulldog softball team 10-4 on Wednesday afternoon. The May 3, 2017 loss …

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By GERARDO RECINOS
Martinez Tribune

Earlier this season, Alhambra’s girls lost their first home game in over four years.

Now they’ve lost their second.

Sheldon-Sacramento were no slouches. The Huskies dropped a ton of runs in a strong hitting display, downing the Lady Bulldog softball team 10-4 on Wednesday afternoon.

The May 3, 2017 loss came as a shock to those who have probably only seen Alhambra lose maybe one or twice over the last six years. But when you look at the pedigree of the visiting opponent, it’s not as unexpected.

Sheldon was ranked 19th in the nation by MaxPreps, whereas the Bulldogs were number 66.

As a ball club, the Huskies hit .389 on the season before they arrived in Martinez, and it didn’t take very long for them to break out the bats and show what they could do.

Four hitters in, Sheldon had their first lead.

Strangely, the Bulldogs could possibly have gotten out of the inning with minimal damage, but they were caught napping.

Pitcher Brianna Edwards was caught trying to make a play at third base on a ground ball back up the middle off the bat of UCLA-bound junior Shea Moreno.

Instead of having a runner on third with two outs, the Bulldogs had to deal with two runners on. And as an intelligent base runner, Moreno advanced to second as the dejected infielders weren’t watching her.

Freshman Sam Oliver only needed one pitch to make Edwards pay. The freshman lefty went the opposite way before depositing the first offerring from Edwards on the walkway over the left-field wall for a three-run home run.

Alhambra struggled to answer.

Only Kaylee Pond managed to get anything going for the Bulldogs, but even then, only the freshman right fielder managed to score off the Sheldon starter.

Pond scored on a double off the bat of Karlee Sparacino, but neither Regan Silva or Maci Shepherd could drive in the runners that were stranded on second and third.

Alhambra got one run, the Sheldon Huskies got five in reaction.

Leadoff hitter Maci Fines sparked the Huskies, and a string of four consecutive extra base hits put the Bulldogs in a position to nearly be mercy-ruled.

The Bulldogs were backed up against a wall and in an unusual position. But they did at least manage to keep some of their credibility up as one of the best team’s in the section.

Junior Lindsey Osmer doubled to spark the rally, and Miranda Nilson reached on an infield single. The duo were driven in by the freshman Pond, who was one of the loan bright spots in an otherwise bleak day.

The right fielder was 3-for-3 with a pair of RBI’s from the nine-spot in the lineup for Alhambra.

With the rally, it seemed like there might still be a shot for Alhambra to make a late run.

However Sheldon handed the ball off to hard-throwing lefty, senior Talia Miles.

The Deleware State University bound senior only allowed a single hit (to Pond) while striking out six hitters in her three innings of work to shut the door for Sheldon.

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Collision on Alhambra Avenue causes power outage https://martineztribune.com/2017/05/05/collision-on-alhambra-avenue-causes-power-outage/ Fri, 05 May 2017 08:01:36 +0000 https://martineztribune.com/?p=7264 MARTINEZ, Calif. – A vehicle collision on Alhambra Avenue led to a power outage Sunday. At about 3:17 p.m. on April 30, officers from the Martinez Police Department (MPD) responded to the 6700 block of Alhambra Avenue for a report of a vehicle colliding into a telephone/electrical pole.  Officers arrived and located a single vehicle …

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MARTINEZ, Calif. – A vehicle collision on Alhambra Avenue led to a power outage Sunday.

At about 3:17 p.m. on April 30, officers from the Martinez Police Department (MPD) responded to the 6700 block of Alhambra Avenue for a report of a vehicle colliding into a telephone/electrical pole.  Officers arrived and located a single vehicle collision, downed pole and electrical wires blocking both north and south bound lanes of Alhambra Avenue.

Electrical power was interrupted between Blue Ridge Drive and Gregory Lane in Pleasant Hill.

The driver of the vehicle was not injured and preliminary investigation indicates the juvenile male driver fell asleep at the wheel, colliding with the pole. There is no indication alcohol or drugs played a role in the collision and the juvenile was released to his parents at the scene after a thorough investigation.

Both north and south bound lanes of Alhambra Avenue were closed to vehicular and pedestrian traffic between Devon Avenue and Virginia Hills Drive while PG&E crews and Consolidated Fire worked to restore power and open the roadway.

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Patrick Vanier announces candidacy for Contra Costa DA https://martineztribune.com/2017/05/05/patrick-vanier-announces-candidacy-for-contra-costa-da/ Fri, 05 May 2017 08:00:47 +0000 https://martineztribune.com/?p=7246 Patrick Vanier, Supervising Deputy District Attorney for the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office Narcotics Prosecution Team, was joined by more than 100 supporters as he kicked off his campaign for Contra Costa County District Attorney on Thursday. Vanier has been a prosecutor for almost 20 years and has prosecuted hundreds of criminals; both in …

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Patrick Vanier, Supervising Deputy District Attorney for the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office Narcotics Prosecution Team, was joined by more than 100 supporters as he kicked off his campaign for Contra Costa County District Attorney on Thursday.

Vanier has been a prosecutor for almost 20 years and has prosecuted hundreds of criminals; both in the Contra Costa District Attorney’s Office and now in the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office.

“Today, prosecutors are not just trial attorneys,” said Vanier. “They are investigators, problem solvers, innovators, and community partners in combating crime. I have proven to be a prosecutor with fresh ideas and a willingness to institute best practices to bring the criminal justice system into the 21st Century.”

Earlier this year, Vanier was awarded the 2017 San Jose Police Department’s Excellence in Prosecution Award and in 2015, he was named California Narcotics Officers’ Association State Prosecutor of the Year. Vanier, according to a release by the “Patrick Vanier for District Attorney 2018” campaign, is “an experienced prosecutor whose area of expertise is wiretap investigations, especially in major narcotic and gang crime investigations.”

“I am running for District Attorney because I believe we should expect more and deserve better from our elected District Attorney,” said Vanier. “My priorities are to enforce and prosecute laws fairly to ensure offenders who threaten public safety are locked up, utilize the latest technologies, data analytics, and community prosecution models to address rising crime rates through crime prevention and enforcement, and hold myself and the attorneys in the office to the highest ethical standards.”

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Eighteen hour stand-off ends in arrest of homicide suspect https://martineztribune.com/2017/05/05/eighteen-hour-stand-off-ends-arrest-homicide-suspect/ Fri, 05 May 2017 08:00:18 +0000 https://martineztribune.com/?p=7260 MARTINEZ, Calif. – A near nineteen-hour stand-off between law enforcement and a suspected homicide suspect ended in the arrest of a Martinez man last week. Thursday afternoon, April 27, Walnut Creek Police Department received several reports that a female had been shot in the street in the 1900 block of 1st Avenue in Walnut Creek, …

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MARTINEZ, Calif. – A near nineteen-hour stand-off between law enforcement and a suspected homicide suspect ended in the arrest of a Martinez man last week.

Thursday afternoon, April 27, Walnut Creek Police Department received several reports that a female had been shot in the street in the 1900 block of 1st Avenue in Walnut Creek, near the Lindsey Wildlife Experience.

Officers arrived on scene two minutes later and found a female, Roselyn Policarpio, 47, of Martinez, had been shot multiple times. Officers and medical teams provided life saving measures, however, Policarpio did not survive her injuries and was pronounced deceased. Witnesses stated a male suspect had shot the victim, entered a silver Chevy sedan and fled the scene. He headed south on Buena Vista Avenue. Witnesses could only provide a partial license plate at the time.

The suspect abandoned the vehicle on Lynvale Lane and fled on foot. Approximately one hour late later, officers and detectives located the vehicle on Lynvale Lane. A contingent of SWAT officers, K9s, patrol officers and a California Highway Patrol helicopter searched the area. The K9 tracked the scent of the suspect to a residence on San Luis Road. Walnut Creek Police Department set up a perimeter around the house, closed San Luis Road and activated the SWAT Team (Central County SWAT, which is Walnut Creek Police, San Ramon Police, Martinez Police, Pleasant Hill Police and BART Police).

At approximately 6:55 p.m., two Walnut Creek Police officers spotted the suspect riding in the front passenger seat of a silver Mercedes in Martinez. With the help of Martinez Police officers, they did a high risk traffic stop on Howe Road and Arnold Road. During the traffic stop, the driver exited the vehicle and was detained, interviewed and later released.  Subsequently, the suspect put a gun to his head, remained in the vehicle and stated he was going to harm himself. Officers controlled the scene and after approximately 20 minutes, they were relieved by Central County SWAT and their negotiators. The negotiations continued throughout the night and the afternoon of the next day. At approximately 2 a.m., Contra Costa County Sheriff’s SWAT Team relieved Central County SWAT, which is normal in a long term event. Central County SWAT took over the event later in the morning.

During the negotiations, the suspect accidentally fired his handgun through the windshield. No one was hurt due to this firing. The suspect finally surrendered peacefully the afternoon of Friday, April 28.

Gregory Prokopowicz, 38, last known address in Martinez, was arrested and charged in the death of Policarpio.

Prokopowicz has since entered a plea of not guilty, against the advice of his public defender.

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Julie Quinn named Martinez’ Teacher of the Year https://martineztribune.com/2017/04/28/julie-quinn-named-martinez-teacher-of-the-year/ Fri, 28 Apr 2017 17:27:54 +0000 https://martineztribune.com/?p=7194 MARTINEZ, Calif. – This past Tuesday, April 25, Contra Costa County Office of Education (CCCOE) Superintendent of Schools Karen Sakata visited Julie Quinn’s classroom at Las Juntas Elementary School. Quinn, a 34-year instructor, was recently named Martinez School District’s Teacher of the Year (TOY). For the past 17 years, Quinn has been a special education …

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From left: Contra Costa County Superintendent of Schools Karen Sakata, Las Juntas teacher Julie Quinn, Las Juntas Principal Crystal Castaneda, and Martinez Unified School District Superintendent CJ Cammack. Quinn was recently named the District’s Teacher of the Year and will be honored during a special dinner celebration in the fall. (TERRY KOEHNE, CCCOE / Courtesy)
From left: Contra Costa County Superintendent of Schools Karen Sakata, Las Juntas teacher Julie Quinn, Las Juntas Principal Crystal Castaneda, and Martinez Unified School District Superintendent CJ Cammack. Quinn was recently named the District’s Teacher of the Year and will be honored during a special dinner celebration in the fall. (TERRY KOEHNE, CCCOE / Courtesy)

MARTINEZ, Calif. – This past Tuesday, April 25, Contra Costa County Office of Education (CCCOE) Superintendent of Schools Karen Sakata visited Julie Quinn’s classroom at Las Juntas Elementary School. Quinn, a 34-year instructor, was recently named Martinez School District’s Teacher of the Year (TOY). For the past 17 years, Quinn has been a special education resource teacher at Las Juntas. Prior to her current position, Quinn has taught for the Antioch Unified School District, John Swett Unified School District, Walnut Creek Unified School District, Contra Costa County Office of Education, and San Francisco State University.

“My mother says I returned home from my first day of kindergarten complaining that we hadn’t learned to read that day,” remembers Quinn. “Despite this setback, at the end of that first week, I announced I was going to be a teacher when I grew up.” After earning her college undergraduate and graduate degrees, along with two special education credentials, she was soon hired as a resource specialist. “I knew right away this was my calling.”

“I love the many challenges of this position: teaching all the different ages, learning curriculum for each grade, working in the classroom and in small groups, assisting teachers, and working with families – year after year,” adds Quinn. “I love assessing students to help them discover how they best learn, and teaching them how to advocate for themselves (politely). And I especially love working with children in small groups, getting to know them as individuals, discovering their interests and dreams.”

On the evening of Sept. 28, 2017, the 22 Contra Costa County Teachers of the Year, class of 2017-18, including Julie Quinn, will be introduced and honored at the annual Teacher of the Year Dinner Celebration, held at the Concord Hilton. The 22 TOYs will be accompanied by their families, friends, and co-workers. The expected crowd of close to 500 will also include numerous other supporters of the program.

Throughout the school year, Superintendent Sakata makes it a point to visit each incoming TOY in their classrooms, prior to the Dinner Celebration. This is a great way for her to meet the teachers and their students, as well as take in the day’s lesson plan. When individually introducing the TOYs at the Dinner Celebration, Sakata will tell the audience about her visit and will quote one or two of the students’ remarks about their revered teacher.

Currently, there are approximately 8,400 teachers educating more than 176,000 students in Contra Costa County’s public schools. The incoming 22 TOYs represent 17 Contra Costa County school districts, the Contra Costa Community College District, and the Contra Costa County Office of Education (CCCOE).

Most of these representatives, those who teach grades K through 12, are eligible to compete in the Contra Costa County TOY competition. The two top teachers in the county TOY program will represent Contra Costa County in the California State TOY Program this coming fall.

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