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Joan Baca


1934 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Joan Baca Obituary
October 1, 1934 - September 18, 2016 Joan Baca, née Willebrands, was born on October 1, 1934 in Oakland, CA, and died September 18, 2016 in Studio City. She attended schools in Oakland, and attended USC with a major in Political Science. She graduated in 1957 and received a grant for study at the Russian Institute of Columbia University, and in 1975 she earned an M.A. in Education at C.S.U. N. In 1958 she married Albert Baca and soon after joined him in the teaching profession. After teaching in South El Monte she taught in the Burbank City Schools and became principal of the George Washington School in 1983, and retired from it in 2001. During her tenure as principal the school won two Golden Bell Awards and was noted for its innovative programs for placing deaf and hard of hearing students in regular classrooms, as well as developing an outdoors science program and a program of bilingual education for Spanish-speaking students. She is survived by her husband Albert; her two sons, Christopher and Timothy; four granddaughters; and one brother, John Willebrands. She was a very friendly person of seemingly endless energy and enthusiasm who loved animals and supported many social organizations, both humane and ecological. In lieu of flowers contributions can be made to 'Doctors Without Borders' or 'Best Friends Animal Sanctuary' located in Utah. She made this world a better place before she sadly was called to leave it. Private family services have been held.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Oct. 2, 2016
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