Ethel was the third awardee and was inducted in 2007. She was also a recipient of the Henry F. Lippitt Award for her impact on the School. Ms. Lichtman was a devoted volunteer and teacher at Parker whose time and dedication impacted eight decades of Parker people.
Ethel’s roots with Francis Parker School run deeper than most alumni can claim; in fact, they extend all the way back to the School’s founding in 1912. The School’s founders, Clara Sturges Johnson and renowned architect William Templeton Johnson were her great aunt and uncle. Her mother, Ethel Dummer Mintzer was Parker’s second principal, serving the school from 1922-1938.
After graduation from Francis Parker School, Mrs. Lichtman earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Stanford University. Her career was always centered on children and education. Her professional and volunteer resume from her Palo Alto days includes serving as a consultant with the State Department of Education, founding and serving as Executive Director of the Action Center for Citizens in Education, founding the Forum for Education, serving as the California representative to the National Committee for Support of Public Schools, and serving as a member of the National Commission of Educational Governance.
1978 brought her back to San Diego; she served as the Assistant Development Director at Children’s Hospital and Health Center, and Director of Volunteer Services and Director of Development for the San Diego office of Children’s Home Society of California.
Her return to San Diego inevitably and fortuitously included a return to Francis Parker School, for the first-ever alumni reunion event, held in March 1979. During that event, Ethel’s classmates and fellow alumni inspired her to formally record the School’s history; her book The Francis Parker School Heritage, was subsequently published in 1985. It was described in the January 1986 Francis Parker School Alumni Bulletin as “…a marvelous commentary on the early years, from 1912 through the early 1940s, filled with a wealth of photographs. A gift from those who remember it to those who want to know it.”
Ethel’s work, research, and wealth of primary sources were also the basis for our School Archives, moved from the historic cottage on the Mission Hills campus to the Linda Vista Library.
Francis Parker School is a private, independent, coeducational, college preparatory day school for students in Junior Kindergarten through Grade 12 from across San Diego County. Founded in 1912, the Lower School is located on the Mission Hills Campus with the Upper and Middle Schools on the Linda Vista Campus. Parker's mission is to inspire a diverse community of independent thinkers whose academic excellence, global perspective and strength of character prepare them to make a meaningful difference in the world.