Rotary Club of Westchester Citizen of the Year; Seniors smell the roses

BY GEOFF MALEMAN

The William H. Hannon Foundation, founded by the late Catholic philanthropist and real estate developer William H. Hannon, has provided a $100,000 grant to St. Jerome School in Westchester to establish the William H. Hannon Pre-Kindergarten School, which will open this fall.

According to St. Jerome School, it will become the only Catholic elementary school in Westchester, as well as the larger area, to offer a pre-kindergarten program.

The pre-kindergarten program will offer academic, social and physical skills training, in a Catholic Christian environment, to better prepare children to enter kindergarten.

“For several years we have been exploring the need in the Westchester community for early childhood education,” said Sister Donna Anne Bachman, St. Jerome School principal. “We are extremely grateful to the William H. Hannon Foundation for their support in filling this need. Their generosity has allowed us to purchase beautiful play equipment and the other resources necessary to launch this program.

“We are also very proud to name our ‘pre-K’ program after William Hannon, who was a regular visitor to our school and one of our longstanding and strongest supporters.”

St. Jerome School’s pre-kindergarten program will offer both a “full-day” class (from 7:55 a.m. to 3 p.m.) and a “half-day” class (from 7:55 to 11:30 a.m.) Monday through Friday.

Enrollment for the fall semester remains open and interested parents can call the school at (310) 670-1678 or e-mail con tact@stjeromewestchester.org.

“St. Jerome School is a special place, and our board of directors is pleased to be able to assist them in expanding the school to include a pre-kindergarten program to serve all of Westchester,” said Kathleen Hannon Aikenhead, president of the William H. Hannon Foundation. “My late uncle was one of the pioneers in helping to build Westchester and it makes sense for us to continue to recognize his efforts through building new programs like this in Westchester’s schools.”

CITIZEN OF THE YEAR — The Rotary Club of Westchester recently named longtime Westchester resident Terry Marcellus as the club’s Citizen of the Year. The award is presented annually to a non-Rotarian who lives and works according to the Rotary Four-Way Test code of ethics.

Marcellus was selected for his years of community service and his dedication to the public school system in Westchester.

Marcellus has for many years been an advocate of public education and has earned the Friend of Education Award from the LAX Coastal Area Chamber of Commerce. Recently, he has spearheaded the drive to improve local schools as the chair of the Neighborhood Council of Westchester/Playa del Rey’s Education Committee.

Working closely with the Westchester Playa Education Foundation and the LMU Family of Schools, Marcellus has been active in getting the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) establishment to explore small learning communities to benefit Westchester’s schools and give the local community more autonomy with respect to schools in our area.

Marcellus was born and raised in Westchester and was student body president of Westchester High School, from which he graduated in 1967. He went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in political science and a law degree from UCLA.

He has been a key figure in a variety of community organizations, serving as president of Westchester Vitalization, chairman of the Westchester Family YMCA Board of Managers and a founding member of the Westchester High School Academic Booster Club, which sponsors academic letterman jackets for seniors.

SENIORS SMELL THE ROSES — Thanks to Bristol Farms, seniors from the Westchester Senior Center recently had the opportunity to take part in a 90-minute floral design lesson at the center.

The lesson, conducted by Bristol Farms floral consultants Jeanne Scherf and Pricilla Inana, thrilled more than 40 Senior Center Garden Club members.

“As a member of the Westchester Senior Center Garden Club, I want to sincerely thank Bristol Farms market for conducting a wonderful lesson,” said Stephen Bentley. “Our diverse audience was entertained and informed as Ms. Scherf discussed floral care and horticulture, inspired by Ms. Inana’s arrangement of two outstanding floral pieces and delighted to share Bristol Farms’ very generous contribution of cut flowers.

“The highlight of the morning, however, was a raffle for Ms. Inana’s floral arrangements.”

Bristol Farms sent several seniors home with beautiful fresh bouquets of fresh-cut flowers.

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