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Generous bequest has Pasadena magnet school asking: Who?

Joyce Stallfort Davis leaves $440,011 for scholarships at Blair International Baccalaureate School. Officials don't remember her but learn she worked at the school in the 1960s.

September 26, 2009|Seema Mehta

The mystery began in July when an attorney called Blair International Baccalaureate School and told it to be on the lookout for a large check. Two weeks ago, officials at the Pasadena magnet school opened a letter that contained a bequest of $440,011 from a woman named Joyce Stallfort Davis, who died last year at age 81.

Officials were thrilled, but there was one problem: No one knew who Davis was.

"I've worked at Blair for 34 years and had never heard of her," said Dianne Moore, secretary of student services and counseling at Blair.

They learned that Davis was born in the city in 1927, graduated from Pasadena High at the age of 15 and studied at Stanford. She worked for the Pasadena Unified School District for two decades, including as a counselor and assistant principal at Blair when it opened in 1965 until 1968.

Davis said the money should fund three $2,500 scholarships every year for students who are "hard workers" and involved in community service. The class of 2010 will receive the first scholarships.

"This generous gift will provide support to Blair students for years and years to come," said Joan Fauvre of the Pasadena Educational Foundation. "What a wonderful legacy for Mrs. Davis."


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