Meet the Team

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OFFICERS

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Al Fontes

President

Al Fontes has been a resident of Telegraph Hill since 1994, and a member of THD most of that time. His San Francisco roots date back to the 1930's, his mother having grown up in North Beach, while his father was raised in Cow Hollow. After a long career as a software engineer he is now retired.

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Nancy Shanahan

Vice President

Nancy has lived in North Beach and been a member of THD for over 30 years. She now lives on the Filbert Steps in the Telegraph Hill Historic District. As a member of THD’s Board of Directors and its current Vice President, her interests and contributions are primarily in the areas of planning and zoning and historic preservation. Nancy also serves as the President of the Northeast San Francisco Conservancy established as a tax-exempt organization in 2021 to preserve and protect the unique scenic, historic, cultural, and recreational resources of the neighborhoods in the northeast part of the City. Outside of her THD and Conservancy volunteer activities, Nancy is an attorney serving as legal counsel to a nonprofit conservation organization that works with Native American Tribes to acquire land and water to benefit of fish and wildlife.

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Nick Ferris

Treasurer

Nick was born and raised in North Beach. He went to Sts Peter & Paul School on Washington Square Park, grew up at the Salesian Boys & Girls Club, and then went to Sacred Heart for high school. Some of his favorite childhood memories are playing capture the flag and having water gun battles all over Telegraph Hill. After spending 10 years on the east coast (Boston for school and then NYC for fun and some work) he moved back home with the hope of getting involved and strengthening his community for the next generation. In addition to the board of THD, he serves as Vice President of the North Beach Citizens (a hyper-local and innovative nonprofit addressing homelessness,) co-founder of the North Beach Farmers Market, and advisory board member for Sts Peter & Paul School. If you see him around the neighborhood, please say hello. Favorite topics include restaurants, wine, building community, and all things North Beach, literally.

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Melissa Dong Mountain

Corresponding Secretary

As a native San Franciscan, I am an advocate for raising children in the city of San Francisco. I am proud to say my two children are members of the 4th generation of my family to live on Telegraph Hill. A previous career in catering and cooking instruction spawned after attending the Full-Time Culinary Course at the neighborhood's former Tante Marie's Cooking School. While no longer working in the food industry, my work continues to be entrepreneurial. Much of my volunteer time over the past decade has been dedicated to education and child advocacy, and I currently serve as SF PTA 's board president supporting PTAs throughout SFUSD. I'm happy to return to THD's board as Corresponding Secretary to help build community while preserving the unique character of our most wonderful neighborhood on Telegraph Hill.

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Cap Caplin

Semaphore Editor

Bio to come shortly

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Mary Lipian

Recording Secretary

Bio to come shortly

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Andy Katz

Financial Secretary

I have been a part of Telegraph Hill Dwellers (THD) most of my life. I grew up in the North Beach and Telegraph Hill neighborhoods and my parents, Robert and Nancy Katz, were among the original founding members of THD in the 1950s. They helped fight to establish the 40 foot height limit on the waterfront and to protect the uniqueness and small scale of our neighborhoods. I hold these same community based values very strongly. Since joining the Board of Directors, I have served in different positions including Recording Secretary, Corresponding Secretary and now Financial Secretary/ Membership. I also sell advertising for our quarterly publication,The Semaphore. Although I work in property management, my passion lies in my lifelong practice of photography and the joy of exploration and travel with my family.

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Stan Hayes

Past President

Bio to come shortly

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Termeh Yeghiazarian

Historian

Termeh Yeghiazarian is a visual artist, art educator, and community activist interested in politics of cultural representation, displacement, and socio-economic equity. She has exhibited her work nationally and internationally. She is a co-founder of Golden Thread Productions and was the Volunteerism Manager at Burning Man for fifteen years. She has volunteered for many THD projects and served as a THD board member on and off for the past thirty years. She is the founder of the THD Art & Culture Committee.

DIRECTORS

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Kristen Foley

Director

Kristen Foley has lived in San Francisco for 21 years and been a resident of Telegraph Hill for 13 of those. She works as an Executive Assistant for Hudson Pacific Properties and is currently pursuing a Juris Doctor degree of Law at Golden Gate University. She is involved in numerous charitable initiatives and serves on her company’s Social Impact Council tasked with pursuing philanthropic endeavors in the SF Bay Area. Kristen has a great passion for social equity. She believes people and small businesses create the cultural identity of a neighborhood and should be protected when considering re-vitalization and policy initiatives. Kristen has an immense fondness for Telegraph Hill/North Beach and looks forward to serving her neighbors in advocating towards a thriving community. If you see her on the hill, come say hi!

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Katie Hopkins

Director

Bio to come shortly

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Nancy Gaglio

Director

Nanci Gaglio left Greenwich Village for San Francisco in 1996 and finally landed on Telegraph Hill twenty-four years later during the pandemic winter of December, 2020. She’s incredibly thrilled to be here. Nanci serves to further open the art and social scene by discovering different ways to keep the neighborhood continuously curious and vibrant. She is a writer / director of indie films, and live events executive in a global agency by day. By night she loves performance and fine art, live music, wine, pizza, coffee, cannoli and walking up the hill for exercise at least 4 times per day with her little dog.

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Nadya Williams

Director

Nadya Williams is a native of the Bay Area and a lover of the beauty and culture of The City. She is retired from an international peace and human rights non-profit based in San Francisco, and has been an active associate member of San Francisco Veterans For Peace since the U.S. wars on Afghanistan and Iraq. She lived in the Haight Ashbury in the early '60s, then homesteaded in the redwood country of the Mendocino Coast, where she raised her three children, returning to North Beach 30 years ago. She has six grandchildren. She has a degree in journalism, but activism on local, state, national and international issues leaves little time for writing. She received a Certificate of Honor during Women's History month, March 2020 from the SF Board of Supervisors. The legacy of the American war in Viet Nam is a life-long focus, namely the plight of the victims of the war. The forces of wealth and power internationally and locally - the macro and the micro - are parallel obstacles to the beauty, community and human-scale that we treasure in North Beach.

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Greg Giachino

Director

Greg Giachino is a long-time resident of Telegraph Hill whose family’s legacy spans over 115 years in the neighborhood. Born in San Francisco, Greg moved to Telegraph Hill on June 10, 1986, and never left. Greg is also a business owner in the district, operating a successful business consulting company located on Green St. As a member of the Telegraph Hill community, Greg is passionate about our neighborhood. Greg joined the THD board in 2021. He has been active in several committees during his tenure, including Planning & Zoning, Social, Waterfront, and Transportation. Greg strongly believes a neighborhood group should champion equity, character, and community. When he is not challenging political stakeholders on Twitter, you can find him walking the length of the waterfront; from Telegraph Hill to Pier 70, back to Fort Mason, and through North Beach. If you see him, don’t be shy! Greg is honored to be a THD board member and looks forward to serving his neighbors by undertaking important initiatives crucial to the betterment of our community.

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Theresa Flandrich

Director

Bio to come shortly

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Mike Rothman

Director

I grew up in San Francisco and have lived in North Beach since 2017. I am a small business owner and enjoy the outdoors and exploring the city in my free time. I love living in this neighborhood because it feels small and locally supported with interesting characters to meet along the way! As the Parks and Trees committee chair, I am committed to safeguarding our parks and growing our urban tree canopy as much as possible.

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Howard Wong

Chair, Transportation Committee

Howard Wong is an architect, transit advocate and native of North Beach. He has been a past THD Vice-President, board member, committee chair and originator of the Pioneer Park Project. He is a founding member of SaveMuni, and serves on the MTC Policy Advisory Council, TJPA CAC and Sierra Club’s SF Executive Committee. He is active in civic and community organizations, like the District 3 Democratic Club, NEXT Village, North Beach Neighborhood Court, SF Tomorrow and Southern Waterfront Advisory Group--focusing on architecture, urban design, transportation and neighborhoods. Past board memberships include the Chinese Historical Society of America, Civil Grand Jury, Neighborhood Parks Council, SF Heritage and SPUR. Howard stays active with THD because it’s one of the most effective neighborhood organizations---a steady incubator of ideas, leaders and policies.