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This profile was last updated on 2/20/06  and contains information from public web pages.

Employment History

Board Memberships and Affiliations

17 Total References
Web References
Coastside Information Page, 20 Feb 2006 [cached]
Susan Alvaro, director of the Coastside Collaborative for Children, Youth and Families, said the staff had an argument about who would give out the award, which was presented at a teachers' meeting on March 6. "We all wanted to do it," she said. "That's never happened before. Alvaro, whose son had Dorfman "forever ago," said he is the kind of person students remember.
Alvaro thinks it's great that kids who currently have Dorfman appreciate him the way their parents did. - Articles by Matt Kapko, 20 Oct 2004 [cached]
But things have improved, said Susan Alvaro, executive director of Coastside Collaborative.
Staff in the Parks and Recreation Department has done more to reach out to Latino residents, Alvaro said.
And although this was occurring before the report was complete, some police officers continue to take Spanish language classes to better communicate with Spanish-speaking residents, she said.
"I cannot say enough good things about Susan Alvaro," he said.
"We did it dirt cheap, but we did it because it was important to do," Alvaro said.
She's still sees significant room for improvement. And a good start would be to provide more city and community literature in Spanish, she said.
When Latinos receive an invite for a social event or community meeting in English, they consider themselves uninvited, she said.
"I was excited because (the report) was the first thing that was ever in Spanish on the city's Web site," she said.
She said Cabrillo Unified School District has made strides by providing Spanish-speaking liaisons for Latino parents.
"I think the school district tries really hard," she said.
Another improvement would be a local Spanish-language media resource, she said.
When conducting the interviews, she and others involved had trouble convincing Latinos to offer their opinions for fear of governmental reprisal.
"I said to them, 'this is an opportunity for you to be heard,' and a lot of them jumped at that," she said.
Keeping a committed level of anonymity was also persuading, she said.
Many of those she interviewed had a desire to be more involved in the community, but they weren't sure how to go about it.
"I would suspect that there's not been a lot of improvement" at City Hall, she said.
Half Moon Bay Review, 12 Aug 2004 [cached]
But for Susan Alvaro that same jumble of barely legible letters spelled big, big trouble.
Gang-related trouble.
Alvaro, who works as director of Coastside Collaborative for Children, Youth and Families, first noticed the marks July 24.They were scrawled about five feet high on two Main Street telephone polls near the busy juncture of Highway 92.
The unusually large size of the markings, combined with their location at the center of town, is no accident, she said.
Together, they broadcast a powerful, and potentially dangerous message, telling incoming rival gang members that the Coastside is Sureno turf, she said.
"They're marking their territory," said Alvaro, who originally thought the markings to be innocuous PG&E scrawl.
"This is not just some little graffiti that somebody hand wrote," she said."It was huge.It was gigantic.And then right at the entrance to town like that.It wasn't hidden."
Fearing the statement could provoke further gang-related problems, especially during summertime when gang activity on the Coastside typically rises, Alvaro wanted the writing removed - and quick.
Lt. John Quinlan of the San Mateo County Sherrif's Office, who noticed the markings on that same morning, also wanted it covered up.
He said he immediately noti-
Half Moon Bay Review, 19 Aug 2004 [cached]
Susan Alvaro of Coastside Collaborative for Children, Youth and Families is organizing a farewell barbecue bash to be held from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sept. 10 at Cameron's Inn.
"John has touched a whole lot of people on the coast and he's worked with a huge number of people," said Alvaro.
Alvaro acknowledged that, while Quinlan's departure is certain - with his last day possibly being Sept. 13 - some people in the community aren't giving up the fight to keep him here.
They are a bit hesitant about having the goodbye party, Alvaro said.
"What if he gets to stay?"she wondered.
Half Moon Bay Review, 11 Feb 2004 [cached]
Susan Alvaro, executive director of the Coastside Collaborative, which conducted the survey for the city, told the City Council that people were both surprised and "thrilled to be asked by this council what their opinions were of the community."
The results, she said, were a clear indication that the city needed to reach out to its Hispanic residents by providing more information about City Hall, the organization of government agencies on the Coastside and the services offered to residents.
The need for more information and Spanish-language resources were the most glaring areas of improvement for the city, Alvaro said.
The city's annual Leisure Guide is only in English, Alvaro noted.
The city could also try to have more bilingual staffers at key contact points like City Hall, the police department and the community center, according to the survey results, with 84 percent of respondents citing "someone to answer questions in Spanish" as a specific city service they need.
Respondents gave kudos to the police department, which has seen a steady increase in the number of Spanish-speaking officers, and a 97 percent approval rating from respondents who had placed a call to the police department.
Several councilmembers hailed the response rate achieved by Alvaro and the collaborative.
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