Many women and men in our Elk Grove area are making history, and here are stories about some of them.

Rebecca Davis – It is that time of year for the Elk Grove Citizen of the Year. This year’s honoree is Rebecca Davis who is better known as Becky Davis. She was a longtime teacher and administrator in Elk Grove Unified School District (EGUSD), and she is well known for her work with scholarships and the Elk Grove Regional Scholarship Foundation. She is a leader and past president of the Elk Grove Rotary and has spent many, many hours with community involvement.  

The Elk Grove Citizen of the Year event will take place on Nov. 4, sponsored by the Elk Grove Chamber of Commerce at Valley Hi Country Club. The 2018 recipient, Kevin Spease, will join the long list of past Citizens of the Year dating back to 1955 with Raymond Case as the first recipient! We congratulate Becky Davis along with all the Citizens of the Year!

Jim Entrican – Along with his wife, Annaclare, Jim was the 1916 Citizen of the Year, and he continues his work for all of us. He was the speaker at the September meeting of the Elk Grove Chamber of Commerce during History Week. His slide show was spectacular, and he was able to talk about Elk Grove of years ago from a personal perspective. Old Town Elk Grove was brought to life for those who attended the luncheon.

Arnie Zimbelman – The September speaker for the Elk Grove Historical Society was our long-ago history teacher at Elk Grove High School and Cosumnes River College. He talked about his early years in North Dakota and his many years in Elk Grove. He and his wife, Iris, were the founders of the Strauss Festival in 1987, and he continues to be involved. Daughters Debra, Terri, and Sherri are all Elk Grove HS supergrads.

Julie Fong – Sacramento County recently named Julie as Teacher of the Year. She is a special education teacher at Elk Grove Elementary School and we congratulate her!

Sofia Fojas – Our new Director of Visual and Performing Arts in Elk Grove Unified has been very busy in getting everyone in the district and the Elk Grove area connected with their activities. Her goal is to collect information on what kinds of arts programs are currently in place in the schools, and who is participating.

Another set of goals is to support the secondary programs, build comprehensive elementary arts programs and expand what the arts can be by partnering across different departments. She wants to involve family and community engagement, educational equity, English learner services, and college and career connections and build a strong network of arts partners. She has a strong administrative background in managing a districtwide arts program.

Sofia tells us that her experience combined with a deep commitment to the arts will allow her to support and expand a robust arts education within existing programs in collaboration with her EGUSD colleagues and with arts partners in the region.

“I am impressed by the commitment to student achievement at the staff and board levels,” Sofia said. “The district is forward thinking in its approach to access and equity of educational programs for its students and families. It is a large and diverse district encompassing schools in the cities of Elk Grove, Rancho Cordova and Sacramento and I love getting to see the different rural, suburban and urban schools that make up the district.  There is also a deep connection to the history of the community. The historical background of each school on the EGUSD website imparts a warmth and pride of place that I have not seen before in my 25 years in education. I am also impressed by the thoughtfulness and care displayed by my colleagues. I look forward to continuing to learn about the district with their thoughtful guidance.”

Michele Steiner - Cosumnes River College will be celebrating its 50th anniversary next year, and plans are being made for a grand celebration according to Michelle who is getting things together.

Here is a message to readers of HHH … Let me know what you remember about the discussions that led to the new college in our Elk Grove area. How did the name get selected and how was the site chosen? I remember many discussions about both of these but would like to hear from folks who can shed some light on the details.

District56 – Well, that is the new name for what we have called the Civic Center, and I am not impressed with the name. Mayor Steve Ly and the Elk Grove City Council chose the name, but I find it very confusing. The “56” refers to the 56 acres of the property, but there is no connection to history or to what will be housed there. So readers, let me know what you think, and maybe we can suggest some changes to the City Council.

Note: We send our condolences to the families and friends of several people who left us recently: Marjorie Ralph Compton, the sister of Gen. Don Ralph; Waldon Wally Westlake, great athlete related or our Westlake family; and Shirley Bandy, a longtime teacher at Joseph Kerr.


History Happened Here, Book 1 – River, Oaks, Gold

History Happened Here, Book 2 – Fields, Farms, Schools

We the People, a Story of Internment in America

All book proceeds go for student scholarships, and I thank the many purchasers who have made possible the 71 scholarships with each one $1,000  – make your check for books payable to Laguna Publishers and send to me at 9227 Lamprey Drive, Elk Grove, CA 95624.  Books are $20 apiece and California sales tax is included. Add $3 for shipping of one or two books; $5 for 3-6 books. Call me at (916) 685-0606 or email me at   And, you can always purchase books at meetings of the EGUSD Board of Education and the City of Elk Grove. Look for me in the entry area of both places.