Danna Baldwin Moreno
Today Who Are You?
Today who are you? Who am I today? Must be a mantra of Eastern spirituality, repeat it often and it will take you into deeper understanding! Covell was me and I am still Covell. A powerful experience of a lifetime! My bilingual-bicultural experience at U.O.P., without a doubt, altered the path of my life. Covell has been and remains a significant part of whom I was and who I am.
I left my college life with a desire to use my bilingual skills to teach. I found a niche for myself in primary level bilingual education, creating a language rich space in my classroom where children of diverse backgrounds could learn and share. Bilingual teaching gave me great joy and was one way of passing some of the Covell legacy on to others. Now, 28 years into my career with Live Oak School District in Santa Cruz, CA, I am still enlivened by opportunities to teach English and Spanish as first and second languages and to foster multicultural appreciation and integration.
In 1974, I graduated from Covell figuring I could do anything. Why not marriage? I rushed off to marry a Peruvian Coveliano, Jose Luis Moreno, I had known for only 3 months! It never struck me that this mad midnight dash through a blizzard in January was insane! My parents fortunately didn’t disown me. They found it in themselves to accept the surprise nuptials and forgive me the huge dent a flopping snow chain made in the trunk of their car!
Though the marriage didn’t endure, my wonderful daughter, Arianna, came from this union. Arianna has been my greatest gift from Covell. In the last year, she has graduated, married, and is now on the verge of becoming a new mama. I guess that means I’m going to be a grandma!
Who else am I? My track record indicates that I am also officially a “life long learner”! At Notre Dame de Namur College I obtained a Multiple Subject Credential with Bilingual-Cross Cultural Emphasis in 1977. Next, in 1985, I attended the University of California at Santa Cruz (UCSC) to further specialize in biliteracy education. Following that I pursued a Bilingual Special Education Degree Program at San Jose State University. The years 1995 and 1999 were dedicated to study with the Central California Writers’ Project at UCSC as a project fellow and as a facilitator. Cabrillo Community College offered a music emphasis from 2002 to 2006. Lastly, I completed my Executive Master of Public Administration at Golden Gate University in 2006.
Currently, I serve on various committees to support developing social and cultural initiatives in California and various Latin American countries. In recent years, in conjunction with these endeavors, I have reconnected with many of my dearest Coveliano family members; Dawn (Jessie Ballantine roommate) and Dale Young, Teri Graf, Alberto Yanez and Beverley Yanez, Craig Carothers, Rafael Flores, Hilda Gastellum, Luis Ehrlich, Kim (Reed) Edwards, Byng Foresberg (our table tennis mentor, and senior national champion) and many more to reestablish a strand of Covell through SIS. When in Ecuador in 2006 to promote the Covell project, the Ecuadorian Covell contingent (Gerardo Borrero (host) and others) was most hospitable too. It has been a great pleasure to reestablish connection with the Covell family and to jointly experience success in our Covell resurgence quest. Covelianos are scattered all over the world, however, our journeys take us to friends who welcome us wherever we go. Who am I today? I am, as I have been, a part of Covell, an embodiment of its ideals.
Danna Baldwin Moreno, Covell graduate 1974