Daphne Warriner Smith

Daphne, her son-in-law, Eric King, and daughter, Karen

My Pomona years were very good ones:  wonderful professors, lasting relationships, memorable experiences such as a year in French House, a summer at the Montana ranch, the tennis team, language table lunches at Olney…who needed Oldenborg?

I was a French major with an English minor, and my working life has pretty much followed these lines, beginning with a year of teaching English in France right after graduation. Nothing at Pomona, of course, had exactly prepared me for that, but it proved a successful experiment.  I've taught both French and English, mostly French and mostly in high schools, for a total of about 20 years.  I find French infinitely easier to teach because there seems to be more internal logic to it — though I realize that most people feel the French just make up the pronunciation as they go along!

Although I haven't taught full time now for almost 10 years, I have remained with French and French culture, as a founding board member of our local Alliance Française.  This has grown to be a sizeable group, and one of our members, I'm pleased to note, is one of my favorite Pomona professors, Dr. Poland, who has lived in Santa Rosa since his retirement.

I came to Santa Rosa with my husband in 1969, and we raised two daughters here. Though we subsequently divorced, I feel very much a part of the community.  My volunteer work here has ranged from managing a gift shop for the benefit of UNICEF to a present job as editor of the local Audubon Society chapter newsletter.  The problem with these efforts, as I'm sure many of you know, is how to find a way to "retire".

I'm fortunate to have good health, two daughters and a son-in-law of which I'm very fond, a 97-year-old father who has only recently been slowing down a bit, and a close relationship with a man I've known for a number of years.  I hope the future holds more travel, more bird-watching — the combination of the two is especially satisfying.  And maybe someday I'll accomplish that long-term goal of learning to speak Spanish!