Alumni returning to speak Friday

Matthew Friend

Tomorrow, the halls of Redwood will be filled with students new and old, as storied alumni come back to speak at their old alma mater.

Ten members of the Avenue of Giants, Redwood’s hall of fame, will return Friday to share their experiences with students throughout the day.

Among the returning alumni are Eric Schmitt, a Pulitzer Prize winning writer for the New York Times, Don Francis, a retired epidemiologist who worked extensively on the HIV/AIDS virus, and Marilee Rogers, a retired Redwood teacher and head of the alumni foundation.

“They come and talk about the teachers they had. I’m the one there to represent teachers because when we teach we hope to make a difference,” Rogers said.

Others in attendence include Mark Fainaru-Wada and his brother Steve Fainaru, James Barkovich, Gillian Benet Sella, Martha Olney and Nick Suntzeff.

“This Avenue of Giants has been amazing because people have come out of the woodwork. They’re not just celebrities. Yes we have them, but we get people who are hidden heroes,” Rogers said.  “As a teacher I’d like to say that we make a difference and sometimes we know about it and sometimes we don’t.”