Who We Are

Hillsdale named a “School of Opportunity”

The National Education Policy Center out of the University of Colorado has named Hillsdale a “School of Opportunity”, the first in California to earn the gold level and one of 8 schools to be so recognized across the country this year. The Washington Post, September 2016.


The Hillsdale High School Foundation is a nonprofit organization that raises funds to sustain Small Learning Communities at Hillsdale. The organization consists of an Executive Director and thirteen active board members, plus ad-hoc committees. The board is comprised of parents, alumni, faculty and staff who contribute a wide range of expertise. See how you can get involved


  • Lucy Lee (President)

    Lucy has been volunteering at her children’s schools since 2000. At Hillsdale High, she has been a

  • Christina Armstrong (VP of Communications)

    Christina has been supporting her children’s schools since 2006 

  • Ramona Barrantes (VP of Operations)

    Ramona has served on the boards of elementary and middle school 

  • Don Leydig (VP and Co-Chair of Alumni Committee)

    Don is a Founding Member, Past President and now 

  • Andrew Epstein (Treasurer)

    Andrew is an investment professional with over thirty years’ management experience in

  • Carrie Ridge (Secretary)

    Carrie is not new to the Hillsdale High School community, personally nor professionally.

  • Jeff Gilbert (Lead Principal)

    Jeff is the Lead Principal at Hillsdale High School. He received his Masters of Education,

  • Norma Bower

    Norma  has lived in San Mateo with her family for over 25 years.  She has two Hillsdale students, 

  • Mary Ellen Davis

    I am a native of South Carolina. I received my undergraduate degree

  • Nory De Francesca

    Nory, and her family have been living in San Mateo for 15 years.  They have two children,

  • Cheryl Glaiser

    Cheryl and her family have been residents of San Mateo for 18 

  • Robin Latta

    Robin has lived in San Mateo for more than 25 years and has one son at Hillsdale


Jennifer Russell  joined the foundation team in July 2015. Her most recent position was at Stanford University where she worked in fundraising and program management for four years. Prior to that, she worked at The Development Fund, a national non-profit, as a Program Director for six years designing, launching and raising money for public purpose financing intermediaries.  Her other work experiences include legal work, banking, consulting and teaching middle school in Thailand. Jennifer’s volunteer experiences include running large fundraising events for St. Paul’s School, serving on the PTA of Foster City Elementary School and coaching her kids soccer teams.  Jennifer attended both Dartmouth and Vassar colleges graduating from Vassar with a BA in History. She studied International Business at Erasmus University in the Netherlands while earning her  MBA from UC Davis. She is a mother of one current and two future Hillsdale students.


Founded in April 2007, the Hillsdale High School Foundation serves as the school’s primary fundraising entity. The HHSF kicked off its fundraising efforts with an event honoring Homer Zugelder and Rich Mazzoncini, two respected and admired Hillsdale coaches. In 2009, district budget cuts endangered Small Learning Communities. HHSF now focuses its fundraising campaigns to insure that SLCs continue to thrive for Hillsdale students. Learn more

We Need Your Help

The SLC model is more ‘resource intensive’ than traditional models

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How Your Money Is Spent

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Ways to Donate

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Hillsdale High School

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