Alum, Immigration Activist Jose Antonio Vargas Returns to Roots in Bay Area

Tuesday, September 18, 2018
SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE -- “Everyone in this room is really important to how I got here,” he said. He thanked his assembled “adopted family”: Anne Gelhaus, his first boss at the Mountain View Voice; venture capitalist Jim Strand, whose scholarship program paid Vargas’ way through San Francisco State University; Karen Willemsen, “like a big sister to me,” whose father-in-law allowed Vargas to use his Oregon address as proof of residency to acquire a driver’s license; and Peter Perl, Vargas’ former senior colleague at the Washington Post in whom he confided his immigration status in 2004. (Vargas was part of a Post reporting team that won a Pulitzer in 2008 for its coverage of the Virginia Tech mass shooting.)