By Robin GOLDSWORTHY
Some say that you can’t go back home, but that wasn’t the case in February when the Glendale Educational Foundation celebrated the achievements of Glendale Unified School District alum at its annual Dancing With Diamonds Ball.
Ron Underwood, who attended Hoover High School, was lauded for his achievements in the arts. An accomplished director for both television and feature films, Underwood’s credits include the movies “Tremors,” “City Slickers” and “Mighty Joe Young” and episodes of “Once Upon A Time,” “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Castle.”
Dr. Varoujian Gorjian also graduated from Hoover and was recognized for his achievements in the fields of science and technology. A research scientist for Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Dr. Gorjian received his BS in astrophysics from Cal Tech and his master’s and Ph.D. in astronomy and astrophysics from UCLA. He has lent his time as a mentor and advisor as the deputy lead of the NASA/IPAC Teacher Archive Research Program (NITARP) through which he mentored 20 middle and high school teachers in doing research with archival NASA space telescope data (2004-2011).
From Crescenta Valley High School, 1978 graduate Tom Holmoe was presented with the distinguished achievement award in health and fitness. As director of athletics at Brigham Young University since 2005, Holmoe oversees a program of 21 intercollegiate sports, involving more that 600 students. His collegiate career was with BYU as well, earning first-team All-WAC honors as a senior. He then went on to the NFL as a fourth round draft choice with the San Francisco 49ers, playing on three Super Bowl championship teams. Since retiring from the NFL, Holmoe has coached at Stanford University and the University of California as well.
A crowd of several hundred donned evening wear to attend the gala that was held at the Glendale Hilton. In addition to celebrating the achievements of the honorees, guests had the opportunity to purchase a chance to win one of two half-carat diamonds provided by an anonymous donor. The lucky recipients were Montrose resident Corliss Andrade and Lauren Phillips, daughter of honoree Ron Underwood.
The evening ended with dancing to music by Bob’s Yer Uncle.