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After seeing her first performance of Nutcracker at the impressionable age of 3, Stephanie Maiorano knew she would become a dancer. Through years of training and hard work, her goal of dancing professionally became a reality when she performed principal roles while a member of Southern California Ballet. From there, Stephanie traveled to Houston as a company member of Houston Ballet II. Currently dancing with the San Diego Ballet, Stephanie has danced the title roles of Romeo et Juliet and Firebird; performed soloist roles in Javier Velasco’s Echale Salsita, Suite Italienne, Mambomania, Besame Mucho, Colors, An Old Sweet Song, Flamingo pas in Carnival of the Animals, Somewhere in Time pas in Rhapsody in Blue, Arthur Murray’s Dance Secrets and Nutcracker.
Named a Teacher of the Year by Poway Unified School District in 2011-2012—and recognized as a top 10 finalist for Teacher of the Year by the San Diego County Office of Education—Julie Harris knows what it takes to be an effective educator. “I’ve always loved the idea of being a teacher,” Julie says. “I’ve always wanted to be in this environment. I’ve loved learning and the whole idea of school is fun for me.” A fourth and fifth grade teacher with 35 years experience, Julie credits her initial training in theater as an essential tool for effectively communicating with her students. Among her many accomplishments, Julie is also a recipient of the Disney Creativity in Teaching award.
Cree Scudder (her real name is Lucretia) began her artistic study in the 1980’s. “I couldn’t get enough of art—putting pencil to paper or paint on canvas, touring museums with instructors or listening to artists talk about their journeys,” she says. “But the priorities of life interfered, and I merely dabbled—and yearned for the day I could take a deeper dive into art.” These days Cree continues her artistic journey spending half the year painting in a house overlooking the sea in Southern California, the other half near a large wilderness lake in upstate New York. “I can’t stop. To me, painting is a special blessing. I’m lucky.”
Specializing in residential architecture, Laura DuCharme Conboy, a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) accredited architect, thinks about success with every design. “A successful house design will constantly have a positive impact on peoples’ lives,” she says. Recognized with multiple design awards, Laura’s work has been featured in publications such as San Diego Home & Garden, Sunset Magazine and Better Homes & Gardens. Along with her architecture work, she’s also active with the local chapter of the AIA, local community planning groups, and a board member for the New School of Architecture. “I think I got lucky,” she says. With architecture, “It uses every part of your brain. Art, history, math and science. It’s just perfect for me.”