Community Thanks Veteran Policymaker. Trustee Díaz-Slocum Recognized for her Calm Demeanor While Providing a Strong Voice
A warm smile, wise words, and a huge heart–this is just a small list of the qualities that have endeared Maria Díaz-Slocum to the Redwood City School District (RCSD) community for more than two decades.
Superintendent Baker presents Trustee Díaz-Slocum with a resolution from the office of Congressman Kevin Mullin.
Díaz-Slocum wraps up 21 years of service as an RCSD Board of Trustees member–and five-time Board President–as she retires this month, but she leaves a lasting legacy. Raised many years in Redwood City, working as a beloved public librarian, and an RCSD staple, she has touched many lives of those in the community and made many meaningful connections.
Many community members attended a Board of Trustees meeting to thank her for the years of heartfelt contributions to RCSD. The community had an opportunity to share their thoughts and well wishes before Díaz-Slocum’s departure.
“For the past two decades, you have been a kind, thoughtful, and calm voice who always kept a steady course towards doing what is best for students,” said Superintendent Dr. John Baker. “ You have always reflected on what you’ve learned, on what you’ve heard, and on what you’ve researched before making a decision. While you have always been a strong advocate for the Bayside, all of us also admire your stand on representing all students in the District.”
The past 21 years have been marked by pivotal and positive growth for RCSD with Díaz-Slocum making an unforgettable impact along the way.
“Your years of dedication and your commitment to doing what is right for our students has helped shape our current work and focus on equity,” said Assistant Superintendent Liz Wolfe. “Thank you for all you have given to Redwood City.”
A graduate of Hoover School herself, Díaz-Slocum’s children attended Roosevelt School where she was heavily involved as a room parent and PTA member. A passion for equity for all students across the District led her to run for the Board, becoming first elected in 2001, after seeing dramatic differences at school sites.
Trustee Díaz-Slocum precinct walking with her nephew for Measure U. Redwood City voters approved Measure U in 2016.
She has also served on a number of other committees and site councils throughout RCSD such as the Site Council for McKinley Institute of Technology.
“Thank you for being part of the history of RCSD,” said Michelle Griffith, Director of Community Schools & Partnerships. “Thank you for your tireless dedication to our students, families, and staff.”
Her time and attention extends to the greater community through service with several entities including Sequoia Union High School District, Community Alliance to Revitalize Our Neighborhood (CARON), Frontiers in Leadership, REFORMA, Bibliotecas Para La Gente and the American Library Association.
“By generously sharing your knowledge of the community and your perspectives on the issues, you helped me to become a much better board member,” recalled former Trustee Chris Bohl.
“Your commitment to the well being and education of the students above everything else was always something I admired. It is a rare quality in school trustees, in any district. The school district and the community are much better places because of your board tenure.”
A former RCSD student thanks Trustee Díaz-Slocum
As a librarian at North Fair Oaks Library, students and parents would often stop in–not only to check out books but to chat about school with a friendly and familiar face. Díaz-Slocum has deservedly earned a reputation as an advocate for students and families, as well as a calming influence for all.
“You have always brought important perspectives to our decision making with your lived experience and your close relationships with the students and families,” said Trustee Alisa MacAvoy.
Among her many memories serving on the Board, Díaz-Slocum said that some of her greatest moments were also times of great challenges, including navigating the passage of bond measures and the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Passing the Bond Measure that allowed us to upgrade our facilities into a safe 21st-century learning environment where our students can thrive [was very memorable],” she said. “The COVID pandemic changed our world and the way we delivered instruction to our students. Moving to distance learning was a herculean effort for all the staff and very hard on students.”
Former and current Trustees join Superintendent Baker in thanking Trustee Díaz-Slocum for her 21 years of service to Redwood City students