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Reporters' notebook
February 08, 2013, 05:00 AM
The city of San Mateo is trying a new way to get community input on improvements for the Beresford Park playground renovation project, and, if successful, will try it on future projects. By using a community engagement website developed by MindMixer, the city hopes to gather new ideas and feedback to complement comments received at traditional public meetings. The Parks and Recreation Department has launched the site to gather opinions on must-have equipment and other ideas for the park. You can submit ideas, photos, maps and even videos.


Jennifer Ratay, program officer in The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation’s Effective Philanthropy Group, will join the Silicon Valley Social Venture Fund (SV2) as executive director in March, SV2 announced Tuesday.

Ratay has served as program officer at the Hewlett Foundation since 2007. At the Hewlett Foundation, she has directed the foundation’s multi-million dollar Organizational Effectiveness grants program that helps grantees strengthen their leadership, organizational infrastructure and impact. She has coached grantmakers and grantees on leadership development, board governance, strategic planning, evaluation and financial health and sustainability.

Ratay holds a master’s degree in public affairs from Princeton University and a bachelor’s degree in government from Dartmouth College. She has held leadership positions at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, consulted to the Aspen Institute and worked for a U.S. Congressman, The Pew Charitable Trusts and the United Nations.


Looking to purchase some books? The Friends of Millbrae Library will hold an outdoor bargain book and media sale from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 23 at the library, 1 Library Ave. All adult books will be 50 cents and children’s books will be 25 cents. A collection of classic vinyl records will be for sale. Grab a bag of books for $5 between 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. For more information call 697-7607.


Congrats to Philippe Cohen, Mary Knuckles, Matt Jacobs and Michael Carl for winning the 2013 Sustainable San Mateo County Indicators Photo Contest. Their five photos represent sustainability in San Mateo County through economy, environment and social equity. Check out the photos at


Do you have a child who loves the American Girl dolls? It was announced this week that the newest store dedicated to the doll will open at the Stanford Shopping Center this fall. The two-level, 15,000-square-foot store will feature a traditional shop selling the dolls and accessories but also a 27-seat bistro, doll hair salon and a boutique at which they can design a T-shirt for their doll.

The reporters’ notebook is a weekly collection of facts culled from the notebooks of the Daily Journal staff. It appears in the Friday edition.

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