Fire Response

Donate to Faculty and Staff Affected By the Fires

Melissa Ceresa Family

Melissa and her family (spouse David, 3 children and 2 grandchildren, 3 dogs and 2 cats) lost their home in the CZU Lightening Fire on August 21, 2020. Melissa is a long-time employee of West Valley College and a former president of the Classified Senate. She currently oversees our Veterans Resource Center and provides daily support and care to our veteran student population. She has spent her career supporting her classified professional colleagues through her work on the Classified Senate and development of professional development activities and scholarship programs. During her 20 year tenure at West Valley, Melissa has worked as a program specialist in numerous campus programs, supporting our students in Community Education, EOPS, and the Veterans Resource Center. Melissa is the epitome of the caring professional we so appreciate at the college. This fund will assist her and her family as they pursue temporary housing and, most importantly, in restoring their land and rebuilding their homestead among the redwoods in Boulder Creek, CA.

Heidi McFarland Family

Heidi and her husband, two children and dog Ember, were evacuated from their home in the Santa Cruz mountains in August due to the CZU lightning fire. One of her colleagues in our Park Management program also served as a firefighter and was the first to inform Heidi that her home had been lost. Heidi is a faculty member in our Park Management program. She helps train the very people who are fighting these fires and will help to reforest the land after the fire is extinguished. She is a treasured mentor to all her students, past and present, and a treasured colleague. This fund will assist Heidi and her family to sustain temporary housing and to rebuild their home.

Michelle Reed Family

Michelle Reed lost her home in the CZU lightning fire. She is a longtime faculty in the psychology department having also served as department chair. Michelle is known for her rigorous preparation of her students to transfer as psychology majors to the UC and CSU system universities. She has mentored multiple generations of students who have now serve the community by making psychology their career in social services, the criminal justice system and the educational system. This fund will support Michelle in sustaining temporary housing and rebuilding her home.

Evacuated Employees
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Fire Victim Fund

Last Updated 9/16/20