Student commission captures honor
UC student and Berkeley Housing Commissioner Brandon Simmons has won one of three prestigious John Gardner Fellowships awarded annually to UC Berkeley students.
The fellowships are named for John Gardner, who received his doctorate from UC Berkeley and went on to serve as secretary of health, education and welfare from 1965 to 1968 under President Johnson and founded Common Cause. The fellowships team graduating seniors with distinguished citizens in government and public service.
Three other fellowship are given to graduating seniors from Stanford University, where Gardner received his baccalaureate and master’s degrees.
Former Daily Planet reporter honored
The California Teachers Association has honored former Berkeley Daily Planet reporter David Scharfenberg with a John Swett Award, a journalism prize awarded annually for journalists “who honor all teachers with their skillful and sensitive work,” said CTA President Barbara Kerr.
Scharfenberg’s award came for his ongoing coverage of education issues for the Santa Cruz Sentinel.
UC Berkeley professor to head S.F. Federal Reserve
UC Berkeley economics professor Janet Yellen will become the first woman to head the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco when Robert Parry, the current president and CEO, retires in June.
Yellen, who also serves as the Eugene and Catherine M. Trefethen Professor at the Haas School of Business, joined the UCB staff in 1980. From 1994, Yellen was on leave from the school to serve of the Fed’s board of directors.
She becomes the fourth woman to head a Federal Reserve Bank.
Sexual predator sentenced
An Alameda County Superior Court judge sentenced serial child molester Kenneth Parnell, 72, to 25 years in state prison last week for attempting to buy a four-year-old boy
It was his fifth conviction.
Parnell was busted by Berkeley police last year after the sister of his former caretaker told him Parnell wanted to buy an African American boy.
Parnell soared to national notoriety after the escape in 1980 of 15-year-old Steven Stayner—kidnapped as a sex slave in Merced eight years earlier—and five year old Timothy White of Ukiah.
Stayner spent only five years in prison for the two kidnappings and was paroled to Berkeley in 1985. The parents of both children urged that Stayner receive the maximum sentence in the Berkeley case.