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Meet Our Students & Staff

Rory McKee, Los Gatos HS Guidance Counselor

"The students and staff at our school make me extremely proud to be a Wildcat. It's very humbling to be part of our school community where so many outstanding things are happening on a daily basis."

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
The students and staff at our school make me extremely proud to be a Wildcat. It's very humbling to be part of our school community where so many outstanding things are happening on a daily basis. I am genuinely proud to tell others that I work at Los Gatos High School.

What was your 1st job?
When I was 14, I was hired to work in a camp kitchen. I prepared/ served food, interacted with campers and the other staff, and did dishes—lots of dishes, haha.

What are your words of wisdom to live by? It's never too late to make a meaningful life change!

What's something we might not know about you?
I was adopted from South Korea when I was four months old. I have an older sister (Mrs. Mercer!) who was also adopted from South Korea when she was four month old, two years before my adoption. Though we are not biologically related, we couldn't be closer siblings :)

Read More about Rory McKee, Los Gatos HS Guidance Counselor
Medha Ravi, Saratoga HS Class of 2024

"I am so proud of the SHS community. I thrive off of healthy and friendly competition. My peers are extremely driven, many of them undertaking incredible projects from prototyping robots for space travel to dominating their sport at a national level."

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
The community. I thrive off of healthy and friendly competition. My peers are extremely driven, many of them undertaking incredible projects from prototyping robots for space travel to dominating their sport at a national level. Not only are SHS Falcons impressive academically, they also offer any support I need-- whether it is through mentorship programs, tutoring sessions, or collaborative study groups. The sense of camaraderie within the SHS Falcon community fosters a positive and encouraging environment, where everyone is motivated to excel and help each other succeed. It's this combination of high achievement and mutual support that makes me proud to be a SHS Falcon.

Who is your hero or inspiration? 
Judith Polgar serves as my source of inspiration due to her groundbreaking achievements in chess, shattering gender barriers. Her strategic brilliance and fearless play style redefine possibilities for women in chess, motivating me to challenge norms in my pursuits. Off of the chessboard, Polgar's advocacy for global chess education resonates with my commitment to education. Her resilience, strategic mindset, and dedication to breaking barriers inspire me to pursue excellence, challenge stereotypes, influencing my approach to life, leadership, and the pursuit of my passions.

Do you have any hobbies/ extracurricular activities you do outside of school?
Outside of school, my passion for mathematics has led me to conduct research in the field of origami constructible numbers. Beyond academics, my commitment to mental health advocacy is evident through my leadership at the Saratoga High Wellness Center, where I spearheaded initiatives and raised participation. As a filmmaker, my documentary on antibiotic resistance won two festivals and garnered global attention. Additionally, my roles in the Water Polo team, as the chess club president, and as a mentor in competitive mathematics showcase my diverse interests and leadership skills.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I see myself completing a PhD in a STEM field (maybe working on increasing the efficiency of space travel?). I will still be playing chess and waterpolo as well as advocating for the importance of mental health in young teens worldwide.


Whether conducting research, competing in sports, or championing mental health causes, my goal is to lead a fulfilling and purpose-driven life that combines my diverse interests and positively influences the world around me.

 

Read More about Medha Ravi, Saratoga HS Class of 2024
Maxwell Tan, Los Gatos HS Class of 2026

"What makes me especially proud of Los Gatos High School is our immensely welcoming community and proud diversity. Since my freshman year, I have experienced nothing but open arms from both peers and teachers."

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
What makes me especially proud of Los Gatos High School is our immensely welcoming community and proud diversity. Since my freshman year, I have experienced nothing but open arms from both peers and teachers. Especially during marching band, I was immediately struck by the passionate empathy of most of the seniors, as someone who initially felt intimidated by high school life. It is not an exaggeration to say that our school always goes above and beyond to ensure the optimal learning environment for students of every background. From the first two years of high school, my teachers have been some of the most inspiring figures I have ever met; their everlasting kindness and thorough passion for their subjects have fueled my drive for academic success. We have a wonderful structure of support, including school counselors and wellness specialists, letting me know that I am never alone in my journey towards college.

Who is your hero or inspiration? 
As a determined straight As student with a strong passion for STEM, it may seem surprising for my inspiration to be my older sister, an outgoing art student who ended AP Stats with a C. However, my sister's constant positivity and confident leadership have shaped me into the person I am today. Growing up in a traditional Asian family, my sister's passion in art has always been looked upon with disgrace and distain. My sister proved that her hobby was not only a sustainable career path, but also an immense source of happiness. She has taught me to harness a certain level of individuality and to always persist on my dreams -- not everything I do has to be related to math or finance. Having love towards volunteering and music in my free is nothing to be ashamed of, a lesson I later affirmed when considering my extracurriculars. While I do not wish to exactly embody my sister when I grow up, I do look up to her constant happiness and groundedness.

Do you have any hobbies/ extracurricular activities you do outside of school?  
Elpizo Foundation (President): In 2023, I founded a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with the goal of fostering positive impact in local communities and promoting routine volunteering to high school youths. Our volunteer events include creating STEM activity kits for children, planting trees locally, and cooking meals for the homeless. We are already operating in three different schools and have accumulated over 100 hours of student volunteer service. This experience has not only helped me make a tangible impact as a leader, but also enhanced my skills as an entrepreneur and ability to manage a large organization.


Applied Math Club (President): I founded the applied math club based on my love for math and STEM concepts. Each week, I give lectures on economics, cryptography, and physics topics to a wide audience of students, which has not only cemented myself as a leader, but also a teacher and a master of my knowledge.

Stock Market Club (Secretary): In my free time, I love studying various industries and their potential for growth, and trading stocks based on technical and fundamental analysis. Having the chance to teach students these concepts each week has deeply leveraged my presentation and mentoring skills.

Band: My experience with band has harnessed my dedication and commitment towards routine practice and performance. As a principal player of my band, I have learned to lead by example and always be prepared for new challenges. Furthermore, I have been doing marching band since freshman year, where I have excelled as a commanding and determined leader. Henceforth, I have been awarded several awards for my precise efforts and collaboration.

Programming & Engineering: Whether it’s video games or electrical devices, I love doing engineering projects in my spare time. Electrical engineering and programming are hobbies I have developed since a young age, and I hope to continue these activities to work towards more real-world applications. My experience includes building functional embedded systems that harness sustainable energy, and designing optimal models of wind turbines and solar circuits based on the theoretical concepts of wind energy and photovoltaics. At the moment, I am working on developing and launching a functional rocket for the 2024 American Rocketry Challenge.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

In 10 years, I wish to master my passion in engineering and economics after graduating from a prestigious university. Becoming an innovative computer engineer is more than building contraptions; it is also about becoming a teacher, leader, and innovator. I see myself enhancing my leadership and management skills, developing as a mentor, and putting myself in a position where I can lead a growing team. I want to make an impact on those around me -- someone people of my field can look up to for inspiration. Finally, I want to put myself in a role where I have the freedom to innovate and push the boundaries of everyday technology.

Read More about Maxwell Tan, Los Gatos HS Class of 2026
Paul Weir, Saratoga HS Operations/Plant Supervisor

"I am proud to work closely with my staff to help the teaching staff succeed at their mission."

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
I am proud to work closely with my staff to help the teaching staff succeed at their mission.

And, of course, I'm so proud to support the students. I am frequently impressed by them, their decorum and effort at their work here at SHS. I am proud to contribute to their successes in any way I can.

What was your 1st job?
I have always worked in the construction, maintenance and facilities realm, but my first "real" job was as U.S. Facilities Manager for NetManage and then ARM Holdings. During the early days of the internet it was wildly creative and exciting to be a part of.

What are your words of wisdom to live by?
If you want to be good at something- Practice! But the most important element is to practice things that are good for you.

What's something we might not know about you?
My Bleu Cheese, I call "Big Sur Jade" has won best of show at both Santa Cruz and Monterey county fairs. In my retirement years I plan to watch cheese age!

Read More about Paul Weir, Saratoga HS Operations/Plant Supervisor
Claire Mayder, Los Gatos HS Class of 2025

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
This school's spirit and sense of togetherness makes me proud to be able to be part of it. All the different groups we have, there's a place for everybody to feel welcome. 

Who is your hero or inspiration? 
History. While I know that this is not really a person and is more a concept, it's true. All the women and men before me who fought to change the world so that future generations could as well inspire me. 

Do you have any hobbies/ extracurricular activities you do outside of school?  
I spend time with my family and on my computer designing various things. I keep my notebook, of in which has various things from the day's mess to the designs I make. These designs I do help me run the club that I run at school, Cats: Future of Engineering. 

I'm (also always) in the pool either for the school's swim team or just for personal reasons. 

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I hope to see myself making a difference. I'd probably have my masters degree by then where I'd focus on mechanical, aerospace engineering. 

Read More about Claire Mayder, Los Gatos HS Class of 2025
Mike Tyler, Saratoga HS Teacher

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
I love that the school offers so many pathways to success, and the community is so supportive of the learning and activities that go on here. I also value the extraordinary level of dedication of the teachers, admin team, and support staff. Those are the constants I've seen in my 27 years on staff. It's an amazingly good high school, and kids are lucky to go here.

What was your 1st job?
I worked as a dishwasher and cook at my dad's breakfast restaurant starting shortly after high school and continued working there throughout college. 

What are your words of wisdom to live by? 
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. 

What's something we might not know about you?
In high school, I played on the baseball team for three years and was the captain of the team in my senior year. The dedication and hard work I learned from playing sports as a kid taught me about what is needed to be successful in other areas of life.

Read More about Mike Tyler, Saratoga HS Teacher
Mariana Cozzella, Los Gatos HS Wellness Center Coordinator

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
I'm proud to say I work alongside some of the best friends I've ever had. There's a sense of community that I feel so lucky to work here! I am also so thankful for our students and witnessing their growth.

What was your 1st job?
This is going to give away my age but I worked at a Blockbuster (kids will have to Google what these were. Hint: VHS!)

What are your words of wisdom to live by? 
Kindness. Every time, all the time. 

What's something we might not know about you?
I speak 4 languages and have 3 dogs. Also, my daughters went to Los Gatos High School!

Read More about Mariana Cozzella, Los Gatos HS Wellness Center Coordinator
Katie Yang, Saratoga HS Class of 2027

"It's a truly amazing feeling to be in such a supportive and welcoming environment that continues to make my journey throughout high school truly exceptional. I've made so many friends already, all of my teachers guide me, and the overall atmosphere at SHS creates a positive experience for me." 

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
It's a truly amazing feeling to be in such a supportive and welcoming environment that continues to make my journey throughout high school truly exceptional. I've made so many friends already, all of my teachers guide me, and the overall atmosphere at SHS creates a positive experience for me. 

Who is your hero or inspiration? 
My oldest brother, Alex Yang, was a Saratoga Falcon and is currently a sophomore in college. He is a significant inspiration for me because he has been a guiding light in my life.

Do you have any hobbies/ extracurricular activities you do outside of school? I'm involved in robotics, where I apply my problem-solving skills and creativity to design and build amazing mechanisms. I'm also an avid artist, enjoy crocheting during my free time, and enjoy playing violin.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I'm leaning toward becoming an engineer. Engineering intrigues me because it combines problem-solving, innovation, and a chance to impact the world. 

Read More about Katie Yang, Saratoga HS Class of 2027
Ken Nakamoto, Los Gatos HS Teacher

"I'm proud to get to work with some of the best colleagues and students every single day. The amount of support we get from our community is second to none." 

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
I get to work with some of the best colleagues and students every single day. The amount of support we get from our community is second to none. 

What was your 1st job?
My first job was helping out as a marching band instructor. I taught kids how to march. There was a lot to learn in that first year and I am grateful to the people who entrusted me to help out.

What are your words of wisdom to live by? Choose excellence. Do everything (and I mean everything) with the highest detail and care. It was something that one of my mentors told me and it has always stuck with me. Though easier said than done, the more you can make that conscious choice there's nothing you can't do.

What's something we might not know about you?
I have an older brother, mom (who's also a music teacher) and dad that are all musicians. It was one of those things growing up I thought I had to do because my whole family did it. Outside of music, I enjoy fishing, bouldering and watching the niners play.

Read More about Ken Nakamoto, Los Gatos HS Teacher
Tammy Coe, Saratoga HS School Resource Aide

"Students here have so many different types of amazing talents, interests, and strengths, as well as needs that working with them is never dull. The staff is phenomenal in their enthusiasm, work ethic, and support of students, as well as one another. It is a privilege and an honor to work alongside them."

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
Students here have so many different types of amazing talents, interests, and strengths, as well as needs that working with them is never dull. The staff is phenomenal in their enthusiasm, work ethic, and support of students, as well as one another. It is a privilege and an honor to work alongside them. 

What was your 1st job?
1st private job was babysitting. 1st public job was at a Carl's Jr.

What are your words of wisdom to live by? I would like to grow in wisdom by listening a great deal more than I speak. When I do speak I would like to do it thoughtfully and even find at least one complimentary thing to say if I get the opportunity and it is appropriate for the time, person, and place.

What's something we might not know about you?
I have younger brothers that are identical twins.

Read More about Tammy Coe, Saratoga HS School Resource Aide
Jaylen Thomas, Los Gatos HS Class of 2024

"I'm proud to be around friends that I've pretty much grown up with. Also the atmosphere at Los Gatos just can't be replaced. We also have traditions that no other schools have... so its a unique experience."

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
Being around friends that I've pretty much grown up with. Also the atmosphere at Los Gatos just can't be replaced. We also have traditions that no other schools have... so its a unique experience.

Who is your hero or inspiration? 
My Uncle Ivory because throughout my childhood he was a really important mentor to me. He was also a football player and I had always tried to play like him and still do today. He passed a couple years ago but I continue to let him guide me spiritually through my football career

Do you have any hobbies/ extracurricular activities you do outside of school?  
I've been a football player since I could walk. I am now a captain on the LG varsity football team. I have been on varsity since I was a sophomore. I also run track to improve my overall athleticism and speed. 

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Graduated and either living out my NFL dream or in some job/coach of any sport

Read More about Jaylen Thomas, Los Gatos HS Class of 2024
Amy Obenour, Teacher

"I have been blessed to be a part of an incredible Falcon family that never ceases to love and support me."

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
I have been here 31 years and have been blessed to be a part of an incredible falcon family that never ceases to love and support me.

What was your 1st job?
Working at CVS as a cashier.

What are your words of wisdom to live by? Be the change you want to see in the world and Education is all about building relationships.

What's something we might not know about you?
I have been to 3 presidential inaugurations and volunteered at the 1996 Olympics as an athletic trainer to the Olympians.

Read More about Amy Obenour, Teacher
Gina Vu, Production Technician

"I really enjoy being around intelligent and talented students, and am grateful to work with such amazing and dedicated teachers and staff."

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
Whenever I am asked: "Where do you work?", I proudly answer: "I work at Los Gatos High School". 

I am proud to be a LGHS Wildcat because of the high academic standards, community involvement, and beautiful school setting.

I really enjoy being around intelligent and talented students, and am grateful to work with such amazing and dedicated teachers and staff. 

Read More about Gina Vu, Production Technician
Karthik Sangameswaran, Class of 2025

"I am proud of the attention our school gives to wellness, with things like Mosaic and the wellness center, as averse to things like academics. Saratoga (High School) listens to the students and focuses on mental health."

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
The attention our school gives to wellness, with things like Mosaic and the wellness center, as averse to things like academics. Saratoga (High School) listens to the students and focuses on mental health.

Who is your hero or inspiration? 
Ibram x Kendi.

He fights discrimination like me.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
President of a foreign country

Read More about Karthik Sangameswaran, Class of 2025
Dominika Spitzer - Turkevich, Class of 2026

"My community, friends, and family make me proud to be a Wildcat."

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
My community, friends, and family make me proud to be a Wildcat.

Who is your hero or inspiration? 
My inspirations are my loving friends Isabella, Lexi, Dana, Charity, Emily, and Eda.

Do you have any hobbies/extracurricular activities you do outside of school?  
I like to recite poetry, play the piano, and solve riddles.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I see myself as a graduate of either Rice University or UC Davis and with a job that I truly love.

Read More about Dominika Spitzer - Turkevich, Class of 2026
Sarah Thomas, Class of 2024

"Our community's resilience and commitment to bettering ourselves makes me proud to be a Falcon!"

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
Our community's resilience and commitment to bettering ourselves makes me proud to be a Falcon!

Do you have any hobbies/extracurricular activities you do outside of school?  
I'm super proud to be part of our school's Anti-Racism Task Force and I consider myself an activist off campus, as well. I’m also a former member of the national team of Diversify Our Narrative, a student representative on the District's Strategic Planning Design Team, and a part of a team researching ways to better the Housing Choice Voucher Program.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I hope to be graduated from higher education at that point and pursuing a career in policy that allows me to be more involved in the social causes I care about.

Read More about Sarah Thomas, Class of 2024
Liv Johnson, Los Gatos HS

"I am deeply proud to work alongside such caring teachers and staff. I look out my window and the grounds are so beautiful. It looks like I teach on an episode of the Gilmore Girls."

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
I am deeply proud to work alongside such caring teachers and staff. I look out my window and the grounds are so beautiful. It looks like I teach on an episode of the Gilmore Girls. I was so touched at our back-to-school staff meeting by the parents (who are) so supportive of the teachers. And then there are the amazing students. Whether it's their incredible artistic, musical, theatrical, athletic, robotic/ engineering talent or countless examples of being a good human, our student body continuously knock my socks off.

What was your 1st job?  
I simultaneously worked at my parents' bookstore, Moraga Books in Moraga, CA right by Saint Mary's College, and....a frozen yogurt shop in Lafayette, CA.

What are your words of wisdom to live by?
I try to "pre-pave" the next day by imagining an absolutely awesome day,....but as if it's already happened. I'd say between 3-5 nights out of the week I take less than 5 minutes to write/script a journal prompt "about" the next day like it's happened and then I try to "set" the day on my drive. I also visualize putting on sunglasses with heart-shaped lenses to "view the day through the lens of love". I fully acknowledge that these may sound  extremely cheesy but they work for me and help me zero in on the wonderful moments that each day holds.

What's something we might not know about you?
I led backpacking trips for a group called Adventure Outings that offered affordable adventures to Chico State students.

I was also on the kids' TV show in the '70's "Romper Room" (for one day with my pre-school).

Read More about Liv Johnson, Los Gatos HS
Archie Ljepava, Saratoga HS

"I'm proud of the family atmosphere Saratoga has as a staff and the way they let that trickle down to the students; the passion for teaching the students not only to be successful in a chosen career but also in life."

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
My parents graduated from Saratoga High School. My family has been part of the community for many years, where they had apricot orchards here. It makes me proud to still be part of this community and being able to give back to the community on a different level.

Additionally, I'm proud of the family atmosphere Saratoga has as a staff and the way they let that trickle down to the students; the passion for teaching the students not only to be successful in a chosen career but also in life.

Being the Campus Supervisor and a Coach on Campus, I get to have a lot of interaction with students and athletes. Being able to watch the level of dedication and passion to be the best versions of themselves everyday and how they strive to be great, makes me the most proud to be a Falcon!

What was your 1st job?
My first while I was attending high school and playing multiple sports was at the Shell gas station in Los Gatos. I fixed tires and pumped gas for customers. 

What are your words of wisdom to live by?
Treat People the way you would want to be treated!! Treat everyone with kindness and understanding. We never know what someone is dealing with that day and sometimes a simple hello matters!!

What's something we might not know about you?
I was a 3 sport Varsity Athlete through High School. I played football, soccer, and ran track and field. I had the Long Jump record for my high school and was voted best all around athlete.

Read More about Archie Ljepava, Saratoga HS
Andrew Stein, Class of 2024

"I'm proud to be a Wildcat because of our staff, especially our teachers because they our able to challenge us and help us grow as students and as people."

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
Our staff, especially our teachers because they our able to challenge us and help us grow as students and as people.

Who is your hero or inspiration? 
My Dad and my brothers

Do you have any hobbies/extracurricular activities you do outside of school?  
Weightlifting, and community with my local church

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I see myself being a successful civil engineer designing infrastructures to help marginalized communities.

Read More about Andrew Stein, Class of 2024
PJ Yim, Saratoga HS

"I am happy to be working at a school that values education, hard work, and academic/personal integrity."

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
I am happy to be working at a school that values education, hard work, and academic/personal integrity.

What was your 1st job?
As a high school student, I had interned at IBM and worked at a car rental place. 

What are your words of wisdom to live by?
Work hard, be kind, and that's pretty much it.

What's something we might not know about you?
I am a father of three and a husband of one.

Read More about PJ Yim, Saratoga HS
Sophia Krish, Class of 2026

"LGHS has options for everyone, whether it be an athlete, musician, or mainly academic student. There is a place for all students here, and I value that."

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
LGHS has options for everyone, whether it be an athlete, musician, or mainly academic student. There is a place for all students here, and I value that.

 Who is your hero or inspiration? 
My inspiration is my mom. Ever since a young age, she has taught me lessons that have stuck with me to this day, and made me a better person. Not only does she help me believe in myself, but she is a role model of kindness, love, drive, and hard work for me to look up to.

Do you have any hobbies/extracurricular activities you do outside of school?  
I particularly love sports. I currently play both at LGHS and on a year round club softball team as a pitcher and center fielder, and have been playing since I was four years old! I also played volleyball this year for the first time on the LGHS Freshmen Girls Volleyball team, and have played soccer for ten years.

I also love music. I've been taking piano lessons since I was young, and have performed onstage in musical theatre all my life. I love singing, whether it be onstage or in the shower. Just recently, I got to perform at Friday Night Live with my brother Devon who will be a graduating senior this semester. 

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
In 10 years, I hope to be finishing medical school, as I want to be a doctor one day! I hope to contribute to our knowledge of the sciences to improve health in our communities. 

Read More about Sophia Krish, Class of 2026
Anatta "Blue" Chankhunthod, Class of 2026

"The level of academics and extracurricular really make me proud to be a SHS Falcon. My fellow classmates and teachers are another reason I'm proud to be a SHS Falcon."

What makes you proud to be a Falcon?
The level of academics and extracurricular really make me proud to be a SHS Falcon. My fellow classmates and teachers are another reason I'm proud to be a SHS Falcon

Who is your hero or inspiration?
My inspiration in life is my mother, father, brother and sister. I strive to become great people like them, and to accomplish just as much as they have and just as much as they will in the future. My family is also my hero, as they have always supported me.

Do you have any hobbies/extracurricular activities you do outside of school?
The only real hobbies/extracurricular activities I have are basketball and photography. Despite my lack of hobbies, though, I love what I do, be it playing on the basketball court or being in the garden taking photos.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Hopefully with my own home, a stable job, and an enjoyable life. If not, probably still in school. 

Read More about Anatta "Blue" Chankhunthod, Class of 2026
Sydney Backhus, Class of 2023

"I’m so grateful for the opportunities I have gained from my time at SHS, along with my teachers and fellow classmates who have made my high school experience great."

Sydney Backhus
Class of 2023, Saratoga HS

Read More about Sydney Backhus, Class of 2023
Matthew Hardiman, Los Gatos HS

"As a former student and now a teacher at LGHS, I am proud of the community and the students drive to succeed. Day in and day out, the students are the ones that make this campus a special place and it shows in their work in and out of the classroom."

Matthew Hardiman
Teacher, Los Gatos HS

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
As a former student and now a teacher at LGHS, I am proud of the community and the students drive to succeed. Day in and day out, the students are the ones that make this campus a special place and it shows in their work in and out of the classroom.

Also, the teaching staff are an incredibly welcome and helpful group of people that have been super supportive to both the students and I. 

What was your 1st job?  

My first ever job was working at Vasona Park as a boating attendee/camp instructor. It was a great summer job that actually encouraged me to become a teacher because I found my joy of working with kids and seeing them grow and succeed. 

What are your words of wisdom to live by?

Habits develop into character and life isn't that serious as we sometimes make it seem. I believe that healthy and creative habits that you can complete every single day will help you become the person that you want to be in life. Also, with those habits and improving yourself, you sometimes need to take a step back and have some fun along the way. 

What's something we might not know about you?

In my spare time I like to backpack/hike. Since I like to do that, I am trying to visit each national park across the country over the next decade and hike each of their most popular trails. 

Read More about Matthew Hardiman, Los Gatos HS
Lisa Tripp, Los Gatos HS & Saratoga HS

"I love the energy of working in high schools, and watching students develop into bright, independent thinking adults.  LGSUHSD is a special place, and I am grateful to have joined the team!"

Lisa Tripp
District Nurse, Los Gatos HS & Saratoga HS

Read More about Lisa Tripp, Los Gatos HS & Saratoga HS
Ryan Lin, Class of 2025

"The teachers at LGHS are always very dedicated and passionate about teaching their subjects and always go above and beyond to ensure every student succeeds. I am also proud to be a Wildcat because our school provides a strong sense of community and respect with many small clubs and organizations, school events, and opportunities to get involved and connect with others."

Ryan Lin, Class of 2025
Los Gatos HS

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
The teachers at LGHS are always very dedicated and passionate about teaching their subjects and always go above and beyond to ensure every student succeeds. I am also proud to be a Wildcat because our school provides a strong sense of community and respect with many small clubs and organizations, school events, and opportunities to get involved and connect with others.     

Who is your hero or inspiration? 
My heroes and inspirations are my parents. Ever since I was born, they have worked tirelessly to provide for me and my siblings with the best opportunities and education. From my parents, I have also learned the importance of hard work, commitment, and perseverance, to show me what it means to be a good person.

Do you have any hobbies/extracurricular activities you do outside of school?  
I am one of the Vice Presidents of a non-profit organization called CENG, which teaches children worldwide how to code at no cost. 

While serving my community, I have also accumulated many volunteer hours, which has led me to the Gold and Bronze President's Volunteer Service Awards. I also play the violin and am a member of the LGHS Chamber Orchestra and the Vice President of the Tri-M Honors Music Society at LGHS, a program of the National Association for Music Education (NAfME). For sports, I currently play tennis and golf.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
In 10 years, I see myself as a successful computer scientist working in a field that I am passionate about. I hope to land a job at a tech company after completing my studies where I can apply my skills to make a positive impact on society. 

Read More about Ryan Lin, Class of 2025
Kathy Nakamatsu, Saratoga HS

" The students and staff at SHS are AMAZING. I have five wonderful classes of Honors Chemistry students. I love teaching sophomores because I get to help them transition from 9th graders to 11th graders. The growth they experience during this year is monumental. My students are so polite, too - they say "thank you" even when I hand them a test! I love the teachers I work with as well. Some of the hardest working and dedicated staff I've ever met."

Kathy Nakamatsu
Teacher, Saratoga HS

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Liz Olson, Los Gatos HS

"The staff at LGHS truly care about our students. It is wonderful to work with these amazing people. My two sons are currently attending LGHS and it is such a special opportunity to be here and a part of their journey." 

Liz Olson
Library Technician, Los Gatos High School

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Anand Agrawal, Class of 2023

"Saratoga HS not only boasts great extracurriculars but also an incredible community to supplement them. As an example, our annual Bombay in the Bay show now shines with cultural representation not just limited to Southern Asia; diversity and inclusivity is a key element of the show. Our students simultaneously encourage their peers to pursue their interests.

Anand Agrawal, Class of 2023
Saratoga High School

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Ro Venezia, Class of 2024

"I'm so proud of our incredible music program. LGHS has phenomenal choirs, bands, and orchestras, and I am proud to be a part of Mixed Choir, Marching Band, and Jazz Band."

Ro Venezia, Class of 2024
Los Gatos High School

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat? Our incredible music program. LGHS has phenomenal choirs, bands, and orchestras, and I am proud to be apart of Mixed Choir, Marching Band, and Jazz Band.

Who is your hero or inspiration? My vocal teacher, Caitlin Clarke. She and I have been working together for almost 7 years and she's my biggest source of inspiration and encouragement.

Do you have any hobbies/extracurricular activities you do outside of school? I have a lot of music based hobbies. I play electric and acoustic guitar, piano, electric bass, kalimba, and I'm starting to take up drum lessons. But my favorite instrument will forever and always be my voice. I have a natural knack for singing and I've been working my entire life thus far to improve my vocal skills. Using my voice and instruments I write and record my own original songs which I upload on any and all music streaming platforms. You can find me almost anywhere by the name "romeoh" or "romeoh_music". Apart from music, I'm a huge fantasy nerd. I play D&D a lot with my friends, mainly acting as the DM for the groups I am apart of. D&D is one of my favorite creative outlets because of all the possibilities of stories and magic. Some of my best memories with my friends come from sitting around a table rolling dice and defeating monsters. I also enjoy reading comics (particularly Peanuts and Calvin and Hobbes), completing escape rooms, and collecting dice and card decks.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Hopefully having moved back to Massachusetts and having opened my own studio to record music.

Read More about Ro Venezia, Class of 2024
Brian Safine, Saratoga HS

" The Saratoga community is filled with passionate, dedicated students and educators. I am proud to be involved in a community where so many people are invested in student success and young people are encouraged to pursue their dreams. Our students care about life beyond the classroom and are genuinely concerned about the well-being of others."

Brian Safine, Guidance Counselor
Saratoga High School

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Cynthia Wang, Class of 2024

" Something that makes me proud to be a student at LGHS is being with my friends or in class and experiencing the strong, academically-driven community that we have. It inspires me to both improve as a student and as a person."

Cynthia Wang, Class of 2024
Los Gatos High School

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Mike Navrides, Los Gatos HS

" I love the school spirit and the fact that many of our students exemplify what it means to be a student/athlete, with the student part coming first. We also have a wonderful staff, made up of caring individuals who are always willing to go the extra mile to help their students be successful."

Mike Navrides, Statistics Teacher
Los Gatos High School

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Allison Tan, Class of 2023

"I’m proud to be a Falcon as I’m surrounded by bright individuals who all have unique passions to contribute to the world."

Allison Tan, Class of 2023
Saratoga High School

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Andre Rosenberg, Class of 2024

" The truly amazing staff and student body we have at LGHS. I love many of the kind hardworking people who are at our school. I've always found it quite enjoyable to go to class and interact with outstanding teachers and kind compassionate students. In my time at LGHS I've never been prouder to be a Wildcat when I'm working on a project with my friends, you're listening to one of our amazing teachers."

Andre Rosenberg, Class of 2024
Los Gatos High School

What makes you proud to be a Wildcat?
The truly amazing staff and student body. I love many of the kind hardworking people who are at our school. I've always found it quite enjoyable to go to class and interact with outstanding teachers and kind compassionate students.  

Who is your hero or inspiration?
I'm inspired by some of the great political thinkers of the past 150 years. Listening to some of the things these people have said, including Mahatma Gandhi's amazing advancements in human rights and peaceful protests or Franklin Delano Roosevelt ability to lead a nation through war and put an end to a horrible NAZI regime with just words is inspiring. 

Do you have any hobbies/extracurricular activities you do outside of school?  
I love hanging out with my friends whether in video games or going to the store or just walking around. This  is a big part of what I do outside of school.

I am also fascinated by international relations and military science. I'm currently doing a few noncredit classes trying to learn more about these subjects. I also am a big thrift shopper and have a small collection of computers dating back to 1980. 

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
My current intention is to go to college to get my master's degree and join the Navy. 

Read More about Andre Rosenberg, Class of 2024