Outstanding Alumni Award
About the Award
The Outstanding Alumni Award will be given to alumni who embody the ideals of intellect, initiative, and social responsibility which are the essence of a Parker education. They exemplify the core values of the School through excellence and selfless service in their careers and lives. They show a commitment to their community and/or Parker, and are striving toward local or national recognition.
Outstanding Alumni Awardees
Sydney Thomas '06
Sydney is the Founder and General Partner of Symphonic Capital - a venture capital firm that invests in companies making life better for the 99%. The launch of her fund was recently covered by TechCrunch. She has focused on this thesis for the past decade and has created a distributed network invested in this space by founding a podcast where she profiles these companies, launching a newsletter where she writes about these companies, and hosting events where she organizes people who care deeply about the impact these companies can have on our society.
She participates in several extracurricular activities to increase diversity in tech and level the playing field more broadly. This work awarded her a Black VC’s Making an Impact designation and an article in Marie Claire.
Sydney is a proven fund builder and investor. She joined one of the Valley’s first Pre-Seed funds and built the software and systems that grew the firm from a Solo Operating GP with 10 investments to a 3-person team with 200+ investments. She grew from Assoc to Principal to Venture Partner.
Prior to her work in tech, she served in the Bloomberg Administration in NYC. Over the course of her tenure, she drafted federal legislation, negotiated a multi-million dollar contract, and received a full-ride scholarship to her business school of choice.
Sydney graduated from Berkeley with her MBA and Duke with her BA.
Andrew Vassiliadis '01
Andrew Vassiliadis was the youngest owner of a United Soccer League Team, the beloved San Diego Loyal. Andrew grew up playing soccer and developed a love for the sport which was deeply ingrained in his family. After graduating from Parker in 2001, Andrew attended Cal State Long Beach, and launched a career in the entertainment business as a DJ and event producer for events around the world. He found himself drawn back to soccer, and coached teams at both The Bishop’s School and Parker.
In 2020, he joined Landon Donovan and Warren Smith in bringing a professional soccer franchise to San Diego. After an abbreviated 2020 season due to the Coronavirus pandemic, SD Loyal went on to a successful run and into the playoffs in 2022.
SD Loyal ignited the soccer community in San Diego, developing a dedicated fan base of families, friends, and soccer fans. Beyond the athleticism, SD Loyal was committed to its community off the field, receiving the United Soccer League’s Community Engagement Award for initiatives ranging from partnering with the Gary Sinise Foundation to support military families, hosting a San Diego Pride at home games, raising funds for Rady’s Children’s Hospital, and winning the Charles Nathanson Memorial Award for Cross-Border Region Building.
"Since the very beginning, serving our community has been our top priority," said SD Loyal Chairman Andrew Vassiliadis. "Today’s awards reflect our commitment to the betterment of San Diego, whether it’s helping those in need, championing inclusivity or protecting our environment.” (Excerpted from Forbes, Dec 2021)
Although SD Loyal played its last game in 2023, the team was a lightning rod for soccer enthusiasts in San Diego and left a lasting impact on fans and the city alike.