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2017 All-Star Teacher finalist Cindy Gershen

2017 All-Star Teacher finalist Cindy Gershen

Chef and teacher Cindy Gershen, founder of Walnut Creek’s Sunrise Bistro restaurant and the Wellness City Challenge non-profit, created a remarkable Sustainable Hospitality Program at Concord’s Mt. Diablo High School. Focused on the science of food through culinary arts, gardening, and nutrition, the program is now an integral part of district’s curriculum and an Innovation Center for programs that can be replicated.

Cindy prepares young people for employment as professionals in the healthy food service industry. Students are taught to prepare nutritious meals that are served to other students including campus sports teams and faculty members. The curriculum incorporates the “do no harm” revolution taking place in the Hospitality industry promoting standards of business good for the environment, workers, and consumers. Another part of the curriculum is the “state of the art” growing technique utilizing vertical tower gardens in classroom and outdoor environments.

Cindy’s senior class focuses on Career Technical Education (CTE) through topics such as farm-totable and farm-to-cafeteria with hands-on experience on the process of planting, growing, and harvesting produce and entrepreneurship through catering. Her students also promote health and wellness through a district wide “Water Drinking Campaign”.

She continues to expand youth education programs with a recently started culinary, growing and nutrition program for 4th graders.

In her new role as a Teacher on Special Assignment (TOSA) for Mount Diablo Unified School District, Cindy is launching Educatering to support the healthy food needs of the cafeteria, administrative staff, and local community through student driven recipes and products by providing non-packaged, nonprocessed healthy food. Her goal is “Teachers in the best condition to teach, and students in the best condition to learn.”

Cindy’s programs are remarkably effective in creating social change. They merge theories and principles with hands-on professional level activities. And her programs take a prevention approach to the epidemics of obesity and diabetes occurring in our schools. She continually reminds students that they should “Eat well to be well out in the world.” 

Her non-profit, Wellness City Challenge, hosts the Annual Contra Costa County Mayors’ Healthy Cook-off. Students from her programs team up with local officials as “sous chefs.” Local leaders become advocates on building healthy communities through the education system. Also through Wellness City Challenge, an after-school program supports at-risk youth by covering topics such as nutrition and culinary education, personal empowerment and entrepreneurship. 

Several state and local groups have given Cindy awards for her health and wellness advocacy including the California Assembly District 14 “Woman of the Year” award. Cindy is also co-author of the The Fat Chance Cookbook (Hudson Street Press January 2014) with Robert H. Lustig, MD, a Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology at University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), Director of the Weight Assessment for Teen and Child Health (WATCH Program at UCSF), and author of the bestselling book Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity and Disease.

Perfection: Roger Federer wins every set en route to historic Wimbledon title

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AP

Perfection: Roger Federer wins every set en route to historic Wimbledon title

LONDON -- Roger Federer's wait for No. 8 at Wimbledon is over.

He is once again the champion of the grass-court Grand Slam tournament, now more often than any other man in the history of an event first held in 1877.

Federer won his eighth title at the All England Club and 19th major trophy overall, capping a marvelous fortnight in which he never dropped a set by overwhelming Marin Cilic 6-3, 6-1, 6-4 on Sunday in a lopsided final that was more coronation than contest.

When it ended, with an ace from Federer after merely 1 hour, 41 minutes, he raised both arms overhead. A minute or so later, he was sitting on the sideline, wiping tears from his eyes.

"I always believed that I could maybe come back and do it again. And if you believe, you can go really, really far in your life, and I did that," Federer said. "And I'm happy I kept on believing and dreaming and here I am today for the eighth. It's fantastic."

He turns 36 on Aug. 8, making him the oldest man to win Wimbledon in the Open era, and is a father of four. Both of his sets of twins - boys, 3, in their light blue blazers; girls, 7, in their dresses - were in the guest box for the trophy ceremony.

One son stuck a couple of fingers in his mouth; a daughter grabbed her brother's hand.

"They have no clue what's on. They think it's probably a nice view and a nice playground. But it's not quite like that here, so one day hopefully they'll understand," Federer said about his boys.

As for the girls, he said: "They enjoy to watch a little bit. They come for the finals, I guess."

When Dad is Roger Federer, you can wait until the last Sunday to show up.

Truly, this outcome was only in doubt for about 20 minutes, the amount of time it took Federer to grab his first lead. Cilic, whose left foot was treated by a trainer in the late going, was never able to summon the intimidating serves or crisp volleys that carried him to his lone Grand Slam title at the 2014 U.S. Open, where he surprisingly beat Federer in straight sets in the semifinals.

This one was all Federer, who last won Wimbledon in 2012.

That seventh championship pulled Federer even with Pete Sampras and William Renshaw in what's still officially called Gentlemen's Singles. Sampras won all but one of his in the 1990s; Renshaw won each of his in the 1880s, back in the days when the previous year's champion advanced automatically to the final and therefore was able to successfully defend a title with one victory.

Federer had come close to bettering his predecessors but couldn't quite do it. He lost in the 2014 and 2015 Wimbledon finals to Novak Djokovic - "Tough ones," Federer called them Sunday - and in the semifinals last year after erasing match points to get past Cilic in a five-set quarterfinal.

With clouds overhead and a bit of chill in the air, Federer's early play, in general, was symptomatic of jitters. For everything he's accomplished, for all of the bright lights and big settings to which he's become accustomed, the guy many have labeled the "GOAT" - Greatest of All Time - admits to feeling heavy legs and jumbled thoughts at important on-court moments to this day.

And so it was that Federer, not Cilic, hit a double-fault in each of his first two service games. And it was Federer, not Cilic, who faced the match's initial break point, 15 minutes in, trailing 2-1 and 30-40. But Cilic netted a return there, beginning a run of 17 points in a row won by Federer on his serve. He would never be confronted with another break point.

"I gave it my best," Cilic said. "That's all I could do."

It was as if the first indication of the slightest bit of trouble jolted Federer.

In the very next game, Federer broke to lead 3-2. He broke again to take that set when Cilic double-faulted, walked to the changeover and slammed his racket on his sideline chair. Cilic then sat and covered his head with a white towel.

After Federer raced to a 3-0 lead in the second set, Cilic cried while he was visited by a doctor and trainer. At that moment, it wasn't clear, exactly, what might have been ailing Cilic. During a later medical timeout, Cilic's left foot was re-taped by the trainer.

Federer would break to a 4-3 edge in the third set and all that remained to find out was how he'd finish. It was with his eighth ace, at 114 mph (184 kph), part of a total of 23 winners. He made only eight unforced errors.

This caps a remarkable reboot for Federer, who departed Wimbledon a year ago with a lot of doubts. He had lost in the semifinals, yes, but more troublesome was that his body was letting him down for the first time in his career.

Earlier in 2016, he had surgery on his left knee, then sat out the French Open because of a bad back, ending a record streak of participating in 65 consecutive majors. Then, after Wimbledon, he did not play at all the rest of the year, skipping the Rio Olympics, the U.S. Open and everything else in an attempt to let his knee fully heal.

It worked. Did it ever.

Feeling refreshed and fully fit, Federer returned to the tour in January and was suddenly playing like the guy of old, rather than like an old guy.

In a turn-back-the-clock moment, he faced long-time rival Rafael Nadal in the Australian Open final and, with a fifth-set comeback, won. It was Federer's 18th Grand Slam title, adding to his own record, and first in 4½ years. Those who had written Federer off needed to grab their erasers.

The formula made sense, clearly, so why not try it again? Federer skipped the clay-court circuit, missing the French Open again, to be in top shape for the grass courts he loves so dearly. Sunday's victory made Federer's record 31-2 in 2017, with a tour-leading five titles.

He is back to being supreme in tennis, lording over the sport the way no man has.

"It's magical, really," Federer said. "I can't believe it yet."

Denied: Venus Williams drops Wimbledon final in straight sets to Muguruza

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AP

Denied: Venus Williams drops Wimbledon final in straight sets to Muguruza

LONDON -- Garbine Muguruza already knew what it's like to lose to a Williams in the Wimbledon final. Now she knows how it feels to beat one for a championship at the All England Club.

Muguruza powered her way to her first title at Wimbledon and second at a Grand Slam tournament Saturday, beating a fading Venus Williams 7-5, 6-0 by claiming the final's last nine games.

At 37, Williams was bidding for her sixth championship at the grass-court major, 17 years after her first. And she was so close to gaining the upper hand against Muguruza, holding two set points at 5-4 in the opener. But Muguruza fought those off and did not drop a game the rest of the way.

"She's such an incredible player," the 23-year-old Muguruza said about Williams during the trophy ceremony, then drew a laugh from spectators by adding: "I grew up watching her play."

In 2015, in her first Grand Slam final, Muguruza lost to Williams' younger sister, Serena.

"She told me one day I was going to maybe win," Muguruza said. "So two years after, here I am."

Muguruza defeated Serena in last year's French Open title match and, by adding this victory over Venus, the Spaniard becomes the first player to win a Grand Slam final against each member of the greatest Sister Act in sports.

With the Centre Court roof closed because of rain earlier in the day, creating echoes with each thwack of racket strings against ball by the two big hitters, Muguruza was too good down the stretch.

Williams began the proceedings with an ace to a corner at 109 mph (176 kph), but Muguruza quickly showed she would neither be overwhelmed by such booming serves nor the occasion. Williams is accustomed to parlaying that stroke into easy points, but Muguruza got back one serve at 113 mph (182 kph) on the match's second point, and another at 114 mph (184 kph) in the third game - and wound up winning the ensuing exchanges both times.

Still, Williams twice was a point away from winning the opening set, ahead 5-4 while Muguruza served at 15-40. On the first chance, a 20-stroke point ended when Williams blinked first, putting a forehand into the net. On the second set point, Williams sent a return long, and Muguruza pumped her fist.

It was as if getting out of that jam freed up Muguruza - and failing to capitalize on the opportunity deflated Williams. That began the match-closing nine-game run for Muguruza.

Williams began faltering, spraying shots to unintended spots - long, wide, into the net - while the younger, less-experienced Muguruza stayed steady, pounding groundstrokes with all her force. By the latter stages, with the ultimate outcome apparent, the only question was how lopsided the score would be.

Williams finished with 25 unforced errors, 14 more than Muguruza made. It ended when Williams hit a shot that landed long, but was ruled in. Muguruza challenged the call, and after a bit of a delay, the review showed the ball was, indeed, out. Made to wait to celebrate, Muguruza eventually could enjoy the moment, dropping to her knees and covering her face as tears arrived.

Soon enough, Muguruza was being shown her name on the list of champions in the stadium's lobby - "Finally!" she said - and being greeted by former King Juan Carlos of Spain.

It was an anticlimactic conclusion to the fortnight for Williams, who was the oldest Wimbledon finalist since 1994. She hadn't made it this far at the All England Club since 2009, hadn't won the title since a year earlier.

"A lot of beautiful moments in the last couple of weeks," the American said.

Diagnosed in 2011 with Sjogren's syndrome, an energy-sapping autoimmune disease, she learned to deal with that condition by turning to a plant-based diet and altering other routines. It took a while for her to get back to her best tennis. Her resurgence began in earnest at Wimbledon a year ago, when she made it to the semifinals.

Then, at the Australian Open in January, Williams reached the final, where she lost to her sister.

Serena is off the tour for the rest of this year because she is pregnant, and Venus spoke about wanting to earn a trophy for the family name.

She came close to achieving that, but Muguruza would not allow it.

Asked if she had a message for Serena, Venus said: "Oh, I miss you. I tried my best to do the same things you do, but I think that there'll be other opportunities. I do."