The Editorial Board, all nine graduating seniors, says goodbye to The California Aggie
Kaelyn Tuermer-Lee, Editor-in-Chief
by Claire Dodd
Kaelyn, it is because of you that I’m on the Editorial Board today. I remember last year, sitting in the Freeborn basement editing my article with Kenton, and you turned to me. “Claire, are you going to apply for a managing staff position?” you asked. “I think you’d be really good.”
Knowing that this incredibly intelligent, kind, successful human had faith in me gave me the courage to apply, and now I’m lucky enough to work alongside some of the smartest people I’ve ever met. Kaelyn, I will always be so grateful for that moment. More so, I am grateful to have been able to witness your fearless leadership. I am grateful for your patience when it comes to dealing with logistical issues and fighting for your entire staff’s paychecks. But most importantly, I am grateful for your friendship.
A month ago, I was in a difficult situation. I texted Kaelyn and Hannah, explaining why I wouldn’t be able to attend our meetings that day. The love and support I received from you that week were unlike anything else. It meant more than you know — thank you for making me feel valued and for being such an amazing friend. I hope one day I can return the favor. I love you!
Hannah Holzer, Managing Editor
by Kaelyn Tuermer-Lee
The first time you introduced yourself to me was over the summer after our first year. I remembered already thinking you were so kind, and I had hoped we’d become good friends throughout the year — plus, the two second-year babies had to stick together, right?
And boy, am I glad we stuck together. After both secretly hoping we’d run The Aggie together our last year, I’m so glad it came true. Thank you for making me a better person and editor, and for being my absolute rock. You’ve had my back without fail, and I can say without a doubt that there’s no one else I’d rather have by my side. I truly don’t know how I became so lucky to have you not only as my partner in news and managing editor but also as my best friend. You are incredibly smart, kind, driven and dedicated, not to mention that you are an outstanding reporter, editor and friend. The world is such a better place with you in it, Hannah Holzer, and I know you can accomplish anything. I can’t wait to read your work in The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times or wherever you decide to go — because if anyone can do it, it’s you.
Kenton Goldsby, Campus News Editor
by Stella Tran
I completely marvel at Kenton’s dedication to The Aggie, watching him advocate for reforms, angles for editorials or even punctuation marks during editing sessions is both an enthralling and awestruck experience. As a new editor, I really had to learn as I go, and Kenton has been one of my most influential teachers. He has not only pushed me to become better at structuring my sentences grammatically but has taught me to empathize with others through the words that I write. I constantly improve — as a writer and person — because of him.
Kenton’s worldly knowledge on what seems like almost every topic is astounding. Not only is he intelligent, but he has such witty humor and a very unique laugh that always puts a smile on everyone’s faces. While it can take me days to marinate on a thought, Kenton can express everything on his mind, with poise, in a matter of seconds. Without a doubt, Kenton will go on to do amazing things and will shine light wherever he goes. Thank you for all that you do for The Aggie, Kenton — you continue to inspire me.
Stella Tran, City News Editor
by Hanadi Jordan
When I first joined the Editorial Board, I remember being both excited and nervous to take on a new position and work alongside new people, many of whom have known each other for years. Terrified of making a mistake or a bad impression, I entered my first week in the office as opinion editor feeling incredibly nervous. But when Stella first smiled at me, I got the feeling that she was genuinely happy to see me. Whether or not she really was, her smile alone made it easier to feel physically at ease. Her calm and kind demeanor has always brought a level of comfort from our first Ed Board meeting to our various late nights in the office.
You can learn a lot about a person by watching how they work, and two things I’ve learned about Stella after three quarters of working together is that she’s not only kind but incredibly hard working. With all the hours and energy that goes into the work we do as editors — from covering breaking news to endorsement interviews to late night Ed Board meetings — I don’t think I’ve ever heard Stella complain once. I only wish we had this last quarter to continue working together in person, but it has been nothing short of an absolute pleasure for me to serve alongside you and our fellow editors.
Hanadi Jordan, Opinion Editor
by Cecilia Morales
Joined by Claire, Stella and me, Hanadi was new to the Editorial Board this year. But you wouldn’t know it from the outside looking in. Hanadi always shared her editorial ideas, often on dense and serious topics, with so much clarity and consideration but in an approachable way that made me feel welcome to discuss with her. She strongly navigated her role as leader of our editorial meetings as if she’s been doing it for years.
Her honesty and humor were a breath of fresh air in our basement newsroom (and in Aggie Zoom calls throughout this social distancing quarter). I miss seeing what snacks Hanadi would bring down to the office to offer to everyone, but now I will miss listening to her say, “I hateeeee this part!” in response to us coming up with headlines and layercakes. Just knowing such an intelligent, independent and passionate mind like hers is going out into this world makes me more at ease about the future. Good luck with everything Hanads (although I know you don’t need it)! <3
Claire Dodd, Features Editor
by Dominic Faria
There are a few things you should know about Claire, starting with the fact that she has perhaps the kindest and most inviting personality out of anyone at this newspaper. Like a ray of warm sunlight, Claire’s presence immediately fills any room with an overwhelming sense of positivity. Especially in the dark dungeon that is (was?) Lower Freeborn, you can’t help but be uplifted by her beaming smile. No matter how turbulent the times, I always know that she’s there to talk to about our economics classes or have a laugh about some wild story that happened to one of us.
But more than that, she’s an adept and accomplished journalist who truly loves and values her job. She has undoubtedly made her mark on this paper not just through her incredible reporting, but through her mentorship of her desk of writers as well. Claire, we all admire your radiant attitude and cherish the supportive friendships that you have formed with all of us. Thank you for uplifting us all, and I wish you nothing but the best as you continue to shine upon the world outside of UC Davis.
Liz Jacobson, Arts & Culture Editor
by Kenton Goldsby
“Aren’t you in my Spanish class?” Isn’t it fitting that our friendship started at an Aggie event where we talked about Spanish? Your companionship has spanned four years, two continents, five countries (even if we only crossed paths in Spain, we were there at the same time!), two emergency beers and an endless number of laughs.
But I could never put into words the true value of what you’ve done for me. You cared for me when I felt broken and alone. You gave me family when I needed it so desperately. For that and more, I can never repay you. When things were going horribly, horribly wrong you were the first person that crossed my mind to call and ask for company — you dropped everything and were there.
I’d say I’m going to miss all of the little things that we would do together, but I already do. These past few months have completely broken our routine and brought an end to our early morning Philz and goss sessions. But your friendship has been there all the same. With all we’ve gone through, there’s nothing that could ever break our friendship. ¡Te quiero un montón, Liz!
Dominic Faria, Sports Editor
by Hannah Holzer
There’s a running joke about Dom being the dad of the group — which was fitting especially during that brief period of time he had a mustache. In certain ways, this rings true: He is mature beyond his years, he is the most well-respected person I have ever met and to disappoint him would truly be the greatest shame.
Dom is like a celebrity on campus — everyone knows him and likes him. But it’s more than this, because everyone who knows Dom genuinely admires him. Bring Dom up in conversation with his friends and they will inevitably sing his praises. And it’s much deserved: I have worked closely with Dom for two years, and he is truly one of the best people I know.
In the newsroom, we occasionally find ourselves swept up in the chaos of a situation. But Dom has always been a grounding presence. In Ed Board meetings, when we get fixated on a single word, Dom is the voice of reason, always able to offer sound advice. In short, it has been a pleasure to work with Dom, and I wish him only the greatest success and happiness.
Cecilia Morales, Science Editor
by Liz Jacobson
Cecilia, I consider it a shame we didn’t get to know each other until this year, but I also consider myself incredibly fortunate to have served on the Editorial Board with you. You bring an unmatched passion for social justice and equality to our editorials, and we are all better for it. Your wise voice and knowledge are an example for us all, especially now.
Being editors, I feel like we all have a more expansive vocabulary than most, but if someone asked me to describe you, the best word I can think of is cool. Effortlessly cool. I feel like there’s a joke in there about you being so cool you wear thermals under your clothes during the winter, but I haven’t thought of it yet. Every day, you walk into the office from what I can only assume was your Vogue cover photoshoot. I will let you know here that I bought a vintage patterned blazer after I saw you rock one the day we took our staff photos.
And a final note: I have never read more science articles than with you as the science editor. Next year’s editor will have big shoes (read: Dr. Martens) to fill. All of the love.
Written by: The Editorial Board