2018 Alumni Award Recipients
There is no greater testament to The Webb Schools' values, culture of service and leadership than our extraordinary alumni. Through our annual Alumni Awards program, the Alumni Council and the Board of Trustees honor alumni whose service and achievements truly exemplify the qualities and values that Webb represents.
We are pleased to announce the five distinguished recipients of Webb's 2018 Alumni Awards:
Alumni Outstanding Achievement Award
Blake Brown '68
Sandra Lee Rebish '88
Blake Brown '68
Blake Brown's impact on The Webb Schools and the Raymond M. Alf Museum of Paleontology is undeniable. During his time as a trustee, and as a co-chair for the upcoming Centennial campaign, Blake's support has reached every corner of campus. Whether supporting important renovations to the science lab, the museum's research and prep labs, the museum's Hall of Life, new faculty housing, Hooper Student Center and the schools' recent acquisition of land, Blake’s generosity and leadership has been extraordinary.
At Webb, Blake enjoyed peccary trips and playing basketball and baseball. He attended Pomona College and later earned an MBA from the University of Southern California. He has remained close to his classmates and in addition to serving Webb as a trustee, serves the Class of 1968 as a reunion chair.
For 30 years, Blake served as president of John Tillman Company, which manufactures and supplies protective clothing for welders and other industrial workers, producing everything from welding gloves to knee pads and rod holders. The Compton-based company has production facilities in California, China, Mexico, India and Pakistan and distribution facilities in California, Georgia and Indiana. During his successful and storied business career, Blake traveled extensively, including over 100 trips to China. He retired from the company at the end of 2016.
Museum Director Don Lofgren explains why he is so grateful to Blake: “Blake drove for Ray Alf on two summer trips right after he graduated from Webb. Now he is a trustee, one who has already made a great impact on Webb. A few years ago, there was no designed space for students to work on their paleontology research projects, so Blake and his wife Andrea created a state-of-the-art research lab and Webb's unique student research program doubled in size. Simply said, Blake's support of the museum has been transformational and the museum achieved world class status sooner than expected because of it.”
Sandra Lee Rebish '88
Sandra Lee Rebish has turned her passion for dermatology and helping others into an international brand with millions of fans. Sandra attended the University of California, Los Angeles, and went on to earn her MD from Hahnemann University School of Medicine in Philadelphia, Pa. She became a world-renowned dermatologist, practicing and treating patients at her own practice in Upland, Calif., and running her own skincare line, SLMD Skincare. Yet her influence reaches far beyond San Bernardino County.
In addition to being a full-time doctor, Sandra is an internationally-recognized social media influencer, known to her fans as Dr. Pimple Popper. Her videos have exceeded 2 billion streams with a digital reach of 10 million viewers around the world, educating fans about skin care and dermatology.
"What stands out the most about Sandra is what drives her," according to her brother Kevin Lee ’93. "Her compassion, her understanding of how skin conditions really impact people's self esteem and her desire to help these people all over the world through education and effective products are central to her mission."
Sandra’s influence has only continued to grow through her TLC series "Dr. Pimple Popper," an educational website called “The Pretty Pimple,” and a new game and book slated for release this year. Sandra has maintained close ties to Webb and her classmates despite her activity. She hosted students for shadow days, spoke at Dies Mulieres, served on the Alumni Council, and presented at Webb's annual Sophomore Career Evening multiple times, always happy to share her dermatology and social media experience with students.
Colborn Distinguished Service
John A. Sutro, Jr. ‘53
Jim Drasdo ’63
John A. Sutro, Jr. '53
While serving in every judicial role assigned to him during his tenure as a Superior Court Judge, John "Jack" Sutro '53 always found time for Webb. He was a member of the Board of Trustees from 1976 to 1984, and from 1998 to 2009. Jack also served as a class agent, regularly attends alumni events in San Francisco, co-chaired both his 50th and 60th reunions, and is a member of the Hastings Society.
Jack graduated from Stanford University and later earned a LLB from Harvard. He was appointed to the Superior Court in 1993, and has served in numerous capacities including, criminal, civil, family law, probate and juvenile. During his time as a judge in Marin County, he was elected as Presiding Judge twice, and served as a member of Marin Court's Appellate Division.
Not surprisingly, Jack continues to give back, dedicating significant amounts of his time to pro bono legal work and to guiding and mentoring others in the legal profession.
Jim Drasdo '63
Jim Drasdo ’63 has left his distinctive mark, not only on The Webb Schools, but on the corporate and non-profit worlds. In each instance, he has done so willingly, thoughtfully and fully.
When invited by Susan Nelson and Taylor Stockdale to participate at the highest volunteer levels at Webb, both as a trustee and to Chair of Webb’s “Building Character” campaign, Jim said that when he returned “I went all in,” a spirit that paid many dividends for Webb. Jim was interested in Webb’s ability to attract and retain excellent teachers, so in 1995 he established the Les and Barbara Perry Faculty Enrichment Fund. Each year, the “Perry Awards” are presented to deserving faculty members who embody the legacies of Barbara and Les Perry.
As Webb embraced the digital age, Jim was responsible for funding Webb’s original digital infrastructure, and when that needed updating 15 years later, again made a generous commitment that allowed Webb to rewire the campus with over eight miles of fiber. And if these efforts were not enough, Jim has been a key proponent of Webb’s proximity and connection to the Claremont Colleges, ensuring that the Schools seek meaningful opportunities with our academic neighbors.
Apart from Webb, Jim and his wife Wendy have served as trustees at The Nature Conservancy of Montana and filled leadership roles at the R3 Technology Initiative at Caltech and The Trust for Public Land. For Jim’s outstanding lifetime of service, Webb elected him Life Trustee in 2018.
“Jim Drasdo’s contributions to Webb have had a transformative effect on this campus. Students and faculty of multiple generations have benefited from his commitment, generosity, time and leadership,” stated Head of Schools Taylor Stockdale.
Young Alumni Rising Star
The Young Alumni Rising Star Award recognizes recent alumni of the past 15 years who have used their success to bring good to the world, demonstrated exceptional achievements in their chosen field, and have a particular affinity for Webb.
Gabe Romero ’08
When one considers the qualifications for the Young Alumni Rising Star award, it is only natural that Gabe Romero '08 comes to mind.
As a student, Gabe was an Honor Committeeman, Day Student Prefect, tennis player, and Mary Stuart Rogers Scholar. As if his schedule was not busy enough, he played a pivotal role in developing Webb's golf program. He was recognized with the Coach Dan Pride and Horace Blackman awards when he graduated from Webb.
Gabe studied Geology at Pomona College after discovering his love for Paleontology at the Raymond M. Alf Museum. He went on to earn an MBA from the Claremont Graduate School while working in Webb's Alumni Office as an Advancement Fellow and serving as a US Army Platoon Leader for the 163rd Ordnance Company. His honorable, generous spirit shows in his current role as a Captain in the United States Army, specializing as a 67J Aeromedical Evacuation Officer. Gabe completed an eight-month deployment in northern Afghanistan with the 16th Combat Aviation Brigade, and currently flies the dedicated MEDEVAC mission for the Alaskan Interior on the UH-60L Blackhawk airframe.
Although his career has taken him around the world, his love for Webb has not wavered. Through his role as a reunion chair for his fifth and now 10th reunion, Gabe has kept his class connected to each other and to Webb.
Alumni Awards Ceremony
All members of the Webb community are invited to attend the Alumni Awards Ceremony, which takes place on Saturday, October 13. A reception will be held at 4:30 p.m. outside the Susan A. Nelson Performing Arts Center and the ceremony will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the Liu Cheung Theater. For more information, please contact the Alumni Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or (909) 482-5206.