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General John Dailey ’56 (ret)
General John R. Dailey has served his country in one way or another for most of his life. After completing his Naval ROTC program and graduating from UCLA in 1956, Dailey joined the Marine Corps. During 36 years of service, he flew more than 7,000 hours in both aircraft and helicopters, completing 450 combat missions during two tours in Vietnam. In 1990, Dailey was promoted to Assistant Commandant of the Marine Corps, a four-star military rank of which there are only 36 officers leading the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. Of these five branches, the Marine Corps has only two four-star generals, making Dailey, as assistant commandant, the second-highest ranking Marine in the entire Corps. Upon his 1992 retirement from the Marines, he became NASA’s associate deputy administrator and also a national delegate to the Research and Technology Organization supporting NATO.
In 2000, the general became director of the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, a post he still holds with distinction. One of the world’s most popular museums, hosting the world’s largest and most diverse collection of air and spacecraft and, it has achieved remarkable expansion under his direction, including the 2003 opening of the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center which houses the Boeing Aviation and James S. McDonnell Space Hangars. In 2011, General Dailey was recognized by UCLA with the Lifetime Achievement Award.
When Johnnie Ashe returned from his first tour of duty in Vietnam as a Marine in 1967, it sparked a plan in his mind that few people — not even his brother Arthur— initially knew about. Five years younger than his brother, tennis legend and UCLA alumnus Arthur Ashe, Johnnie idolized him. “I always thought Arthur had a destiny far above the norm.” So after returning from his first tour, Johnnie went back to Vietnam. By voluntarily returning to a war zone, he ensured Arthur would never have to go due to a government policy precluding brothers serving in war at the same time. This allowed Arthur to stay on course and win the inaugural U.S. Open in 1968 as well as break many athletic barriers during his Hall of Fame career. After the war, Johnnie continued his military career becoming a company commander in the 80s. The rights he fought for are central to his belief in service. He called to mind what Martin Luther King Jr. said. “No men are free until all men are free.” Johnnie said, “There was absolutely no way Dr. King and those who followed him could have done what they did if African-Americans had refused to serve,” adding, these are values that “you keep for life and always have.”
Angel Fulgencio ‘ 14
Angel Fulgencio graduated from UCLA with a BA in Geography/ Environmental Studies and a minor Geospatial Information Systems & Technology. Serving for 5 years in the Army as a Aviation Operation Specialist with 25th Infantry Division, he deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom for a year and with Operation Iraqi Freedom for 15 months.
Angel is a founding board member of the Alumni Association’s Channel Islands Regional Network and served as their communications chair, helping to strengthen the regional network through newsletters and emails, as well as supervising the network’s social media channels. He also participates in the UCLA Volunteer Center’s program in conjunction with the nonprofit group Operation Gratitude, supporting service members by sending handwritten letters and care packages. Angel gives back to UCLA by volunteering with the Community Programs Office as well as mentoring transfer and non-traditional students. For all of his incredible volunteer work he was the recipient of the 2016 Young Alumni Volunteer of the Year Award.
Angel is currently a graduate student at Columbia University, pursuing an advanced degree in social work.
D’Artagnan Scorza ’07, Ph.D. ’13
A native son of Inglewood Dr. Scorza graduated from Morningside High School and is a decorated US Navy veteran, having served in the Iraq-War, soon after September 11th. He helped establish a naval operations unit, managing 250 Navy personnel and an operation budget supporting service members traveling in and out of hostile zone.
In 2007 he concurrently earned two bachelor’s degrees: a B.S. in liberal studies from National University and a B.A. in the study of religion at UCLA, where he went on to earn his Ph.D. in education in 2013. At UCLA, he helped organize an effort to increase enrollment of African American and Latino students and served on the UC Board of Regents
He also was named a 2010 Education Pioneers Fellow and a 2013-2014 Business Alliance for Local Living Economies Fellow. Among D’Artagnan’s many accomplishments, he has conducted expansive research that helped implement policies throughout the state of California, including passing policies that established veteran’s service centers across UC campuses and prioritized $160 million for student services.
Dr. Scorza is serving his first term on the Inglewood Unified School District Board of Education. Elected in April 2015, he has been driving change in Inglewood’s schools and holding the state accountable to put students first. His top priorities are to increase academic achievement, prepare our students for the jobs of the future, and create safe, clean, and healthy schools by using the Measure GG bond funding.
Lt. Col. Shannon Stambersky
Lieutenant Colonel Stambersky graduated from the University of Richmond in 1999 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Health and commissioned as a Quartermaster Officer. She later went on to earn Masters’ Degrees in Security Studies (Western Hemisphere) from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. Prior to her current duties, she served as the single Liaison Officer for the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) to the Department of the Army at the Pentagon, Washington D.C. Also while at DLA, she served in the Joint Logistics Operations Center providing actionable logistics analysis directly supporting the Joint Force as well as State and Federal Agencies.
Lieutenant Colonel Stambersky’s key assignments include: Battalion Executive Officer for HHBN, United States Army North and Chief, Plans and Operations (G1) for United States Army North, Fort Sam Houston, Texas, Battalion Logistics Officer (S4), Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 10th Mountain Division, Detachment Commander, 87th Corps Support Battalion, Fort Stewart, Georgia during Operation Iraqi Freedom I.Among her awards and decorations are the Bronze Star Medal, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the Joint Service Achievement Medal, the Army Achievement Medal, the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal. She is also a Demonstrated Master Logistician.
Daniel Sterling ’17
Daniel Sterling joined the United States Army in 2007 upon graduating from high school. After completing the Army’s Airborne School and Ranger Indoctrination Program, he was selected to become a member of the 75th Ranger Regiment, deploying four times to Iraq and Afghanistan.
In 2010, Daniel was severely injured by a grenade blast during a night raid in Afghanistan. After several months of treatment and rehabilitation he made a full recovery but was unable to continue his role as an Army Ranger. In the summer of 2015, Daniel interned for a member of Congress and was an undergraduate intern for bio pharmaceutical company Amgen. Daniel graduated in 2017 with a degree in political science and plans to complete a master’s degree in business administration before pursuing a career in the field of biotechnology.
Alma Zavala ’12
Former Navy Corpsman Petty Officer 2nd Class Alma Zavala 12’ obtained her BA from UCLA, double majoring in International Development Studies and Spanish. She served on active duty from 2000 to 2006, completing two tours in Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom II with Alpha Surgical Company and Operation Iraqi Freedom III with the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit.
Currently she works at the UCLA Graduate Division and was recently invited to the Chancellor’s Breakfast to represent veterans working at UCLA. During the recent Medal of Honor reception, Zavala presented a letter written by Gen. John R. Dailey ’56, USMC (Ret.) to Capt. Florent Groberg. Last October she led a successful Welcome to the City hike for alumni who are veterans and is a supporter of Team RWB, a non-profit organization that enriches the lives of veterans by connecting them to their community through physical and social activities.