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Francie Cash

Francie Santellen Cash was born in Monrovia, attended Monrovia schools and devoted much of her adult life to those schools and their students. Although she married a non-Latino, she had a different experience in the Monrovia schools, as a Latina, and found herself bringing what she had learned, to her own children, to Latino children, their parents and the community. There was a gap to fill in Latino representation and Francie filled it by becoming an advocate for parents and a role model for Latino students. Francie served as a parent- volunteer for the Monrovia Unified 

School District for 14 years. She served on Parent Teachers Association, Parent Teacher Students Association, and Booster Club Boards at every grade level. She was the founding president of the Clifton PTSA and helped organize the Monrovia Schools Foundation. She served on the founding board of the Boys and Girls Club of the Foothills, and was a part of the team that earned the “All America City” title for Monrovia. Francie was elected to the Board of Education in 1989 and served for 14 years. She ran for Monrovia School Board to add a parent’s perspective, but without intending to do so, she became the representative and the voice of the Latino community. Francie realized that, for many reasons, including language and working hard to provide for their families, parents - including many Latino parents - are minimally involved in their children’s education and never discuss higher education with their student children. Unfortunately, many school counselors don’t stress opportunities for the future in the absence of parent involvement. She used what she calls her “Minimal Spanish,” to translate at school activities. Francie Cash was an active - and activist - board member. She educated and involved her fellow board members. She knew the teachers and staff at every school. She knew all of the administrators. She always governed in a way that showed leadership, inclusiveness and compassion and inspired both the board and the leadership team to reach her goals and their own. Francie Cash will be long remembered by all who worked with her and by all of the children and families (especially Latino children and parents) who benefited from her caring and her hard work.

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