In the latest Around Town column, news about a donation to Barron Park's beloved donkeys, candidates for Palo Alto's Human Relations Commission and Stanford University alumni nominated for an Emmy this year.
DONATION FOR THE DONKEYS ... Barron Park donkeys Jenny and Perry were busily gnawing away on grass on Sept. 1 as they were gifted with a $2,000 donation from the Palo Alto Humane Society through its Daisy Fund for medical care. "The donkeys Jenny and Perry need special treatment for their aging hooves and legs," Barron Park Donkey Project Coordinator Jenny Kiralti said in a statement. "We are grateful for this donation ... because even though the daily donkey care is provided by volunteer handlers, the donkeys' medical care has skyrocketed due to dermatitis of their legs, which has necessitated multiple veterinary visits and expensive medicine." The donkeys receive veterinary care through Starwood Equine Veterinary Services, which has offices in Woodside and Redwood City. Carole Hyde, executive director of the Palo Alto Humane Society, presented the contribution as an oversized check during an afternoon ceremony. "This donation is an act of community partnership, between two long-established local organizations," Hyde stated in a press release. "This is a wonderful example of what community means." Hyde, Kiralti and Palo Alto student Vandana Ravi, who won the Humane Society's Ambassadors of Compassion Story Writing Contest in 2019 for a piece inspired by the donkeys, delivered remarks at the small ceremony. The free event was open to the community, as long as attendees practiced social distancing and wore face coverings. The crowd of roughly 20 people included former Mayor Karen Holman, president of the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District board of directors.
THE INTERVIEWS ... The Palo Alto City Council caught some flack in June, when it moved to reduce the number of seats on the city's Human Relations Commission, which is charged with reviewing police policies and encouraging diversity and inclusiveness. Various critics, including some current members of the commission, argued that fewer seats, in some ways, run counter to one of the commission's goals, which is to give a voice to more residents. But after making the move to cut the number of seats from seven to five, the council this week began to think about its next decision: filling a vacancy on the commission. On Aug. 31, the council interviewed six candidates for the vacancy, which opened up with the expiration of Steven Lee's term (Lee is now running for council). The commission candidates are: Nolofer Chollampat, who works at the health care startup Evidation Health and who wrote in her application that wants to improve "health care literacy"; Sunita de Tourreil, an entrepreneur whose company Happy Chocolate Experiences arranges trips for people to countries where chocolate originates; Sofia Fojas, arts coordinator with the Santa Clara County Office of Education; Curt Kinsky, principal at the business-services firm Ernst & Young; Paula Rugg, who retired as a principal in the Fremont Unified School District; and, Lestina Traior, an attorney who wants to see a "reimagined system of policing." The council will not have a meeting Sept. 7, but it is expected to make the appointment later this month.
ELIGIBLE FOR EMMYS ... Four Stanford University alums are in the running for an Emmy. Andre Braugher and Sterling K. Brown are both vying for outstanding supporting actor in a comedy for their roles as police Capt. Raymond Jacob Holt in NBC's "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" and Reggie in Amazon's "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel," respectively. Braugher and Brown each already have two Emmys to their names. Brown is also in contention for outstanding lead actor in a drama series for playing Randall Pearson in NBC's "This is Us." "Insecure" creator Issa Rae is competing for outstanding lead actress in a comedy series for the character with whom she shares the same first name. "Insecure" co-creator and co-producer Amy Aniobi shares a nomination with Rae for the HBO series, which is up for outstanding comedy. The annual awards show will be held in a virtual format and broadcast by ABC on Sept. 20.