2021: Gloria Cavallero '72 Gloria began cheering on the Dons her senior year and hasn’t stopped since; she epitomizes “bleeding Olive and Gold” and has provided extraordinary service and unwavering dedication to SBHS and our larger community for almost fifty years.
Born in Santa Barbara, Gloria attended Franklin and Jefferson elementary schools and Santa Barbara Junior High before graduating from SBHS in 1972. She attended SBCC before transferring to San Diego State where she majored in English, and obtained her teaching credential from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. She finished her education with a Masters in Second Language Application from Harvard, which led to her teaching locally at Marymount, La Colina Junior High, and later at the American School of Milan in Italy, and the Marymount School in New York. Due to these experiences, Gloria is trilingual, speaking English, Italian, and Spanish. Olive and Gold runs strong in Gloria’s family starting with her parents Christina Tonietto Cavallero ‘38 and Vincent Cavallero ‘40 and moving through to her children Siana 2008 and William Belifiore 2015. Gloria is a charter member of the SBHS Alumni Association, joining in 1974, and has served as both Vice President and President. During her tenure, the Association secured a donation from former principal Claud Hardesty involving stocks and property, which now offers matching funds for all of our scholarships. She worked with the SBHS Foundation to fundraise for the new Peabody stadium and other projects. She is our current historian and produces our twice-yearly Association newsletter. Gloria helped create the SBHS Authors section in the school library and began Archive Fridays, at which Board members spend Friday mornings working on school and alumni projects, including archiving memorabilia donated by alumni from around the world.
In 2015, Gloria received the Golden Oak Award, given by SBHS to outstanding volunteers. She can be seen almost every day of the week at SBHS helping with school projects, flipping burgers at the senior barbecue, attending committee meetings, advocating for students, and announcing the names of students as they graduate from SBHS. If you want to know about SBHS history or traditions, Gloria is the woman to ask!
2020: Steve Koobatian '75Steve Koobatian was born in Santa Barbara and went on to earn a BA in Biological Science, an MA in Rehabilitation Counseling from Fresno State, and a PhD from Walden University in Minnesota in which he focused on the effects of workers’ compensation litigation on injured workers receiving rehabilitation counseling services in California. Since 1984 he has been a Professor at Fresno State University in the Rehabilitation Counseling Program.Steve is a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, Certified Disability Management Specialist, and a National Certified Counselor who founded Vocational Designs, a private vocational rehabilitation corporation where he provides employees, students, and graduate interns with clinical and consulting skills in human services. He consults with businesses and government entities to ensure ergonomics, safety, job analysis, modified duty, and pre-employment ADA ability/agility testing. He provides job search strategies for community college students with disabilities and has given expert testimony in hundreds of personal injury, death, pediatric, wrongful termination, disability, race, and sexual discrimination court cases.
Steve is passionate about serving the local San Joaquin Valley, volunteering through Rotary International with whom he connects middle school students with inspirational business leaders. Internationally, Steve’s volunteer work focuses on clean water, agriculture, education, child development, and creating micro enterprise opportunities. Steve’s greatest joys in life are his wife, Karin, and his children Dustin, Evy, and Robin and his faith in God.
2018: John Kay '53 Dr. John Kay, a first generation American of Scottish parents was born in Rhode Island and moved to Santa Barbara at the age of seven. He attended Roosevelt Elementary School and La Cumbre Junior High School and graduated from Santa Barbara High School in 1953 where he was involved in basketball, track and Jr. Statesmen of America. He attended UCSB where he earned a B.A., M.A. and PH.D. A member of the political science faculty at Santa Barbara City College for 42 years, Dr. Kay was also an adjunct political science lecturer at UC Santa Barbara. In 1983 he received a Fulbright Scholarship to study and travel in India and was selected as SBCC’s Annual Faculty Lecturer for 1983-84. In 2007, Dr. Kay received the Hayward Award for “excellence in education”, the highest California Community College faculty honor. He is past president of SBCC’s Academic Senate and Instructors’ Association. He has directed or co-directed nine SBCC Semester Abroad programs in England, China and Vietnam.
Dr. Kay’s broader service includes a mayoral appointment to chair a City of Santa Barbara Task Force on Electoral Reform, a gubernatorial appointment to a commission investigating the feasibility of splitting SB County and is on the SB County Schools Personnel Commission. He is a retired colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve. He was attached to the 425th Civil Affairs Company in Santa Barbara from 1965 to 1985. Dr. Kay lives in Santa Barbara with his wife, Edith, a retired teacher. Their daughters, Helen and Mary, were born in Santa Barbara and are SBHS alumnae. John is currently president of the UCSB Affiliates and was appointed to the UC Santa Barbara Foundation in 2015. The SBHS Alumni Association is proud and honored to award Dr. John Kay this Distinguished Alumnus award.
2017: David Ortiz '72 David has served in the Santa Barbara County for 39 years as a teacher and administrator. He has helped educate over 30,000 students and has mentored numerous teachers, counselors, administrators and staff.
As a native of Santa Barbara, David attended local schools including McKinley Elementary School , La Cumbre Junior High School, and Santa Barbara High School. He is a proud member of the class of 1972. Memorable to his high school experience was playing basketball with his life long friends under the leadership of Coach Jack Triguero. Coach was instrumental in developing character traits that promoted hard work, perseverance, and determination that is foundational to David’s leadership.
After attending Santa Barbara City College, he transferred to San Diego State University where he completed his Bachelor’s Degree and earned his teaching credential. He returned to Santa Barbara to begin his career in education. He taught for two years at La Colina Junior High School while also coaching baseball and basketball. Due to declining enrollment, David transitioned to Santa Barbara County Education Office. For ten years he was assigned to Los Robles High School that serves the Los Prietos Boy’s Camp. During this invaluable experience, he became interested in leadership responsibilities. Through the encouragement and guidance of three deeply valued mentors including SBHS co-principals, Bill Jackson and Gene Snyder, and La Colina principal, Bob Bowen, David then continued his education at the University of California at Santa Barbara to earn his Masters Degree and Preliminary Administrative Credential in Education Administration. In 1990 , David returned to La Colina Junior High School to begin his administrative tenure as assistant principal. He served in this capacity until 1997, when another mentor, Superintendent Michael Caston, appointed him principal of La Colina Junior High School where he is currently celebrating his 20th anniversary. During his tenure, David became more involved in the school district and the community by serving on a variety of committees as well as a strong advocate for numerous initiatives including: SBUSD Leadership and Secondary Principals Council, Diversity/Equity Committee, Safe Routes to School, Sustainability Just Communities, SBUSD Negotiations, CADA Fighting Back, Disaster Preparedness, Safe Schools, AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination), Restorative Approaches, and PEAC (Program for Effective Access to College).
David continues to be proud of the La Colina school culture and system that has been established and nurtured through his administrative career. The culture focuses on the quality of character,, ( e.g ., work ethic, growth mindset, perseverance, and compassion). The system focuses on oneness as a school community, being a functional team, (i.e. trust, communication, commitment, accountability, results , and contractual relationships).
Central to David’s life is his family and friends. During his senior year, he met his future wife, Leslie Rian (also Class of 1972) and has been married for 39 years. They have two sons, Michael and Daniel. He loves them dearly and is extremely proud of both of them. Adding to the joy of his family has been Michael’s marriage to his wife Megan and his precious granddaughter Sofia. David also has two sisters who are Dons, Susan (Class of 1967) and Barbra (Class of 1969). David attributes the spirit of being a Don as the foundation to his professional development and personal growth. He truly believes with conviction, “Once a Don, Always a Don”.
2016: Tim Gilles '69 A fifth generation Santa Barbarian, Tim has deep roots in the community which include a great grandmother who graduated from SBHS in 1890 and parents who were teachers with the Santa Barbara High School District. Tim attended Roosevelt Elementary School and Santa Barbara Junior High School before graduating from SBHS in 1969. His Don support has continued long after graduation, having served on the Alumni Association Board and currently acting as co-chair for the Class of 1969 Reunion Committee. Tim attended Santa Barbara City College before transferring to Cal State Long Beach. During his final year of college, his widowed mother passed away leaving him and his wife guardians of his four younger siblings. While serving as his family patriarch, Tim completed his studies at LBSU, obtaining his bachelor’s degree and teaching credential in Industrial Technology, followed by a master’s in Occupational Education from Chicago State University.
After his first auto shop teaching position at Oxnard High School in 1973, Tim was fortunate to be hired by Santa Barbara City College’s Automotive Services and Technology Department. His automotive teaching career with SBCC spanned 38 years and he currently holds the position of Professor Emeritus. Dedicated to his field, Tim holds the industry certifications of Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Master Automotive Technician and ASE Master Engine Machinist and has authored or co-authored several automotive technology textbooks. Over the years, he has been active in numerous national, statewide and local professional associations including holding a variety of executive officer positions and delivering presentations at numerous conferences.
Tim is being recognized not only for his professional and industry accomplishments but for his ongoing commitment to helping students learn about cars through his classrooms, labs and textbooks. A devoted teacher, Tim used a Socratic method of teaching that was deeply infused in humor. He thrived in the ever-changing technology of automobiles and took pride in simplifying the complicated technical information to share with his students and motivate them to achieve their highest potential.
A dedicated family man to his wife Joy of 43 years, his two daughters, his four siblings, and many nieces and nephews, Tim is a very worthy Santa Barbara High alumnus. We are proud to honor Tim Gilles ’69 as a Distinguished Alumni Don with such deep and strong connections to the Santa Barbara community.
2015: David Boyd '45 David Boyd graduated from Santa Barbara High in 1945. He earned his BS in Engineering at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, an MBA at Claremont Graduate School in Claremont, California, and certification in the U.S. Navy Nuclear Power Program.
David has served his country well with an exemplary thirty year Naval career – mostly in the nuclear submarine service. He was chief engineering officer in the first crew of the USS Nautilus. He served on the atomic submarine, USS Skate, and has sailed under the Polar Cap of the North Pole several times. He retired as a U.S. Naval Captain in 1980 and has since continued to work in the atomic energy and defense industry. After his discharge from the Navy, he returned with his wife Alyce and their family, to Santa Barbara, to the home he lived in while attending Santa Barbara High. He has continued his interest in attending his high school reunions and has many local friendships.
His service now is volunteering freely and often at the Transition House, the Carpinteria Foodbank, and outreach programs of his church – All Saints By the Sea Episcopal Church. David is truly a dedicated and worthy alumnus who has given his life to service for his country, his church, his family and his community. We are proud to honor David Boyd as a Distinguished Don with deep roots and strong connections to the Santa Barbara community.
2015: Andrew Butcher '76 Andrew Butcher graduated from Santa Barbara High in 1976 and has been the Girls’ Basketball coach since 1982-83. In addition to his coaching duties, Andrew provides hundreds of volunteer hours providing year-round basketball activities to the Don girls.
A Distinguished Don should be one that excels in their profession, provides leadership to others, and gives back to the community. Andrew does all of this in an exemplary manner. He has taught hundreds of Dons lifelong skills to include: the value of hard work, commitment, respect, and how to work cohesively as a team. He is both a coach and exemplary role model to the lady Dons.
Andrew’s dedication to the athletic programs at SBHS is evidenced by his single-handedly pursuing the establishment of the flea market on Saturdays at Santa Barbara High. He spent countless hours of his time and persevered with getting School and Board approval for this athletic fund-raising activity. Since 1997 Andrew, with the assistance of his family and members of the girls’ basketball team, have spent their Saturdays volunteering to manage the flea market, collecting money, supporting a station for the girls’ basketball team, assisting vendors, setting up and cleaning up. This event now provides the financial support for many of the athletic programs by earning over $40,000 per year!
As a High School Girls’ Basketball coach, he is well-respected by his peers in the league and the state, by the students he coaches, and the girls’ parents. Andrew is a leader both on and off the court. He is very successful in his career, as evidenced by leading our Dons Girls’ Basketball team to the state championships games two years in a row – last year and this year! We are proud to honor Andrew Butcher as a Distinguished Don, a dedicated alumnus who continues to give back to Santa Barbara High School daily.