GCC Hoops Star Named State’s Top Female Scholar-Athlete

By Alex Leon
Special to the News-Press

Photo courtesy Sam Lee
Tess Oakley-Stilson, who was a two-year basketball standout at Glendale Community College after being the Rio Hondo League MVP at La Cañada High School, was recently selected as the statewide winner of the California Community College Female Scholar Athlete of the Year award.

Tess Oakley-Stilson remembers the exact day, hour and minute her life changed forever.
It was 11:59 p.m. on May 1, 2018, and she was either going to make the computer keystroke to commit to UC San Diego — or take another path after graduating from La Cañada High School. Her basketball career would be over, months after earning Rio Hondo League MVP honors, if she moved on to San Diego or she could take a gap year to figure out her options.
But Glendale Community College head women’s basketball coach Joel Weiss kept calling with a reminder that playing at the community college level was an option. After visiting the college shortly after, she decided to become a Lady Vaquero and her life would never be the same.

Continue reading “GCC Hoops Star Named State’s Top Female Scholar-Athlete”

Obituary | Kimberly Gilmour Bowser

Kimberly Gilmour Bowser

Kimberly Gilmour Bowser was born December 27, 1984 to Debbie and Andy Gilmour. The youngest of three, she loved her older brother, Steve Gilmour, and older sister, Jenny Gilmour O’Neill. She is survived by her husband Isaac and sons Jacob (4) and Caleb (1).
Kim never fit perfectly into any category. Though easygoing, she was fiercely competitive in sports. She wore big bows in her hair (admittedly to please her mom) and came home with scrapes and bruises from taking falls while playing with the boys on La Cañada Elementary School’s black top.
Kim played on a number of teams coached by her parents and loved playing tennis with her family. As fruits of her talent and dedication, Kim played on the varsity tennis, basketball and softball teams all four years. She loved winning, but loved playing with her teammates and family much more.
She applied that same determination on the court to off-the-court activities too. She graduated La Cañada High School with a 4.5 GPA and fluent in Spanish, a skill that served her well in her missionary work later.
She defined herself by her everyday interactions with people rather than trophies or plaques. From an early age, Kim was an angel on earth. She led a small group at La Cañada Presbyterian Church and mentored other young women. Kim joined trips to Mexico with LCPC and would return with an empty suitcase because she left her extra clothes with those who had less.
She saw every gift as a gift from God and used the gifts and resources she had to help others. Her identity was rooted entirely in God and doing God’s work. She spent the first moments of every day with God in her closet, the quietest place she could find to talk and listen to God.
Kim attended USC on an academic scholarship, joining her sister and brother, parents, aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents in the long line of Gilmours who attended USC. She joined the Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority, and was actively engaged in church ministries. As just one example, she collected computers being replaced by the USC Business School in order to bring them to Nicaragua on a mission trip. In 2007 Kim graduated with high honors in Business and minors in Spanish and Religion.
Kim joined Arthur J. Gallagher Insurance after USC graduation. She felt that this career choice would ensure balance between profession, ministry work, and a future family. She very quickly progressed to a senior account manager with enormous responsibility as a highly regarded employee.
Her ministry remained active. In late 2012, she bought a large house and christened a new non-profit called the East Hollywood Community House (EHCH). The house became the center of life for her church community and neighborhood friends. In addition to community living, Kim and the residents of EHCH held countless birthday parties, engagement parties, quinceañeras, week-long summer kids camps and baptisms at EHCH over the years.
Her Christ-centered life led her to meet her husband, Isaac Bowser. Isaac was an active member of Reality LA Church where he led a community group and played worship music. They quickly fell in love and were married a year later.
Kim and Isaac were soon busy with their next ministry – helping start the East Hollywood Community Church, a hyperlocal neighborhood church. With no building and a modest budget, the Bowsers and church held their Sunday gatherings at an inner-city local park. Kim engaged the neighborhood through youth sports coaching, community clean-ups, young adult mentoring, and life skills coaching. She served as the church treasurer behind the scenes while the new church found its footing. That foundation has led to numerous baptisms and remains an active church.
Kim and Isaac welcomed their son, Jacob, into the world in 2016. The birth sadly led to Kim’s sudden bout of postpartum mania psychosis, a mental illness that affects 1-2 out of every 1000 women. Kim’s subsequent bipolar disorder diagnosis led to four years of managed care.
She later went back to work full time, juggling family, career, church and her community. In 2019, Kim and Isaac welcomed their second son, Caleb, into the world. Her bipolar disorder had ebbed until May 2020 when it manifested itself again, this time in the form of depression. She tragically died from her disease on October 14, 2020.
The Kim that we all knew and loved was taken too soon, but she is restored to peace and in the loving arms of her Heavenly Father. The Kimberly Gilmour Bowser who loved her family and focused on the good of her community made this world a better place.
Rest in peace, dear Kim, we will miss your smile.
Kim is survived by her husband Isaac Bowser, sons Jacob (4) and Caleb (1); her parents Debbie and Andy Gilmour; her brother Steven Gilmour and his wife Phoebe, and their children Archie and Molly; her sister Jennifer Gilmour O’Neill and husband William and their children Aubrey and Sean; and her grandfather J. Douglas Gilmour. She is also survived by many aunts, uncles and cousins all in Southern California.
Services will be held at Oakmont Country Club, Glendale, on Monday, November 9th at 1:45 PM. We will celebrate Kim’s life according to Covid-19 guidelines, outdoors on the golf course. People wishing to attend (or watch) the service on Live Stream, must RSVP to Rememberingkim2020@gmail.com by November 2nd. Walkups are regrettably not permitted.
We hope to continue Kim’s legacy of doing Christ’s work in the city. Donations in her memory can be made to the Kimberly Gilmour Bowser Memorial Foundation through East Hollywood Community House. https://easthollywoodcommunityhouse.wordpress.com/

League of Women Voters, Council PTA to Host School Board Candidates

The League of Women Voters of Glendale/Burbank Unit and Burbank Council Parent Teacher Association will host a candidate forum for the Burbank Unified School District Board of Education race.
The forum will be held virtually on Wednesday, Sept. 30, from 2:45-3:55 p.m. The event is free and open to all. The forum will be broadcast live on the Burbank Television Channel and the Burbank Channel on YouTube and will be replayed until the election on Nov. 3.
The public is encouraged to submit questions for the candidates. To submit your question(s), visit Burbank Council PTA’s dedicated web page: burbankcouncilpta.org/candidate-forum. Due to time constraints and the number of candidates, not all questions will be asked. Questions should be on the issues and applicable to all candidates. No personal attacks or biased questions will be accepted.
The candidates (in ballot order) are:
• Armond Aghakhanian, incumbent
• Steve Ferguson, incumbent
• Emily Weisberg, middle school teacher
• Roberta Reynolds, incumbent
Burbank Council PTA President Wendi Harvel said, “The Board of Education makes decisions that affect all of our students, and they are our elected representatives. Our community has a voice when it comes to educating our children. Our voice is our vote. Both LWV-G/B and BCPTA believe that offering opportunities for community members to learn more about their candidates both empowers voters and encourages voters to show up at the polls.”
To learn more about the League of Women Voters-Glendale Burbank, visit my.lwv.org/california/los-angeles.
For information about the Burbank Council PTA, visit burbankcouncilpta.org.

There’s a Lot of Litter We Can Pick Up

Yesterday, I brought a garbage bag on my morning walk because street trash ruins my relaxing vibe. Fully masked and gloved, I went from my Verdugo apartment to Mayor’s Bicentennial Park, picking up debris.
I’ve lived in Glendale since 1990 and have never seen anyone cleaning up litter, so I do. I pick up Starbucks and Boba Time cups, water bottles, etc., from my block, every few weeks.
As I made my way to the 2 overpass, my garbage bag was half-full. There were so many masks and gloves I wondered, “What’s so hard about tossing your mask and gloves in your own trash?” Plus, those thousands of cigarette butts we see leach toxic arsenic and lead, etc., into the environment daily.
And it’s clear from the drain covers that say “Drains to Ocean” where the litter ends up.
At the overpass, food bags and beverage containers sat as though waiting for room service. I picked up plastic bags and cups deliberately put in bushes. I grabbed a plastic straw that splintered in my glove and will probably end up in our water supply.
A young, homeless-looking man walking by kindly helped me pick up trash. Another man stepped out of his Mercedes to thank me for cleaning up, and I wondered why no one picks up the trash in front of his home.
At the park, someone had a birthday party leaving confetti everywhere, then stuffed their garbage into one can, leaving it spilling out, even though another can sat within a few yards. I ended up with an overstuffed garbage bag, two packed plastic grocery bags, and even more trash.
If everyone on Earth picked up debris in front of their home or business, we’d have a clean planet. Can’t businesses ask customers not to litter?
If we can’t pull together during a pandemic, when can we?
Whether you rent or own, walk outside and pick up the trash on YOUR street, or in your park, because people will more likely litter if garbage is already there.
If we all took responsibility, Glendale really could be the jewel city.

Fran Tunno
Glendale

Cancer Support Community Pasadena’s Virtual Angel Gala Is July 11

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Cancer Support Community Pasadena has successfully gone virtual with its programs — offering online support groups, virtual educational workshops and healthy lifestyle classes to reach more women and men in the community who are facing cancer.
Now CSCP is going virtual with its fundraising, launching its first virtual gala on Saturday, July 11.
“Everyone is invited,” says Kim Ferreira, CSCP’s events manager. “The community’s participation in our virtual Angel Gala will allow CSCP to continue to be a community of support for its members, so that no one faces cancer alone.”
Gala co-chairs Ellen Driscoll, Sandy Kobeissi and Bill Ukropina, along with their dedicated committee, have been working hard to ensure that passion, excitement and fun will shine through in this new format. And although guests won’t be gathering in person on July 11, the event will gather the community together in spirit, celebrating 30 years of CSCP providing free support, education and hope to families facing cancer.
“Our gala honorees are Rosemari Annear, Bistro 45, City of Hope, Sharp Seating, and Charlotte Streng and the late Joel Streng,” said CSCP Executive Director Patricia Ostiller. “Their steadfast support and enthusiasm for this virtual format have been incredible — just another reason why this group of amazing individuals, businesses and hospital are so deserving of recognition and celebration.”
Sponsors from across the region have committed their support to the format and to the mission of CSCP. Anyone wishing to join this list may visit cscpasadena.org/fundraisingevents, email Kim Ferreira at k.ferreira@cscpasadena.org or call (626) 796-1083.
CSCP invites the community to participate in its virtual gala by:
• Joining CSCP in thanking honorees, sponsors and donors who are supporting the event, and considering becoming a sponsor or donor as well.
• Checking cscpasadena.org/fundraising­events for information on when and how to participate in the gala and the days leading up to it. Wonderful auction opportunities and other virtual programming and entertainment will be added to the website as they become available.
• Spreading the word about the event.
• Joining CSCP on July 11
“Families facing cancer rely on CSCP now more than ever. We can’t thank our honorees, sponsors and donors enough for their dedication to people in our community who are facing cancer in the midst of a pandemic,” Ostiller said.
Cancer Support Community Pasadena provides free support groups, educational workshops and healthy lifestyle classes to cancer patients and their families. For more information, visit cscpasadena.org.

City Shows It Can Take a Punch, Emerge Stronger

By Mayor Terry Tornek
Special to The Outlook

We have been suffering as individuals and as a community.
Some of us have lost loved ones, many have suffered financial losses, and now all of us have witnessed a terrible killing that has torn at the fabric of our nation. Both the virus and racism take lives and damage us all.
Since mid-March, we have been asked to modify our behavior dramatically and to exercise a significant degree of self-control. The good news is that it is paying off.

Mayor Terry Tornek

By staying home, social distancing, wearing face coverings and not hugging people that we don’t live with, we have slowed the pandemic, prevented our health-care system from being overwhelmed and created the precursors for reopening businesses … carefully. Then, by obeying curfews, we allowed law enforcement to control a volatile situation created by the terrible death of George Floyd in Minneapolis and the chaos that resulted nationwide.
In both cases, governmental action was imperfect, perhaps overbearing, but largely effective. In this country, we rely on private enterprise and clever individuals to break new ground and to do the creative thinking. But when we are confronted with serious emergencies — earthquakes, civil unrest, pandemics, wars — we must rely on a muscular governmental response to turn the tide. This reliance comes at a price that includes inefficiencies, missed opportunities, errors and more. Continue reading “City Shows It Can Take a Punch, Emerge Stronger”