When Alexandra Clark, a 2019 graduate, came to UC Berkeley to pursue her B.A. in social welfare, she brought more than just academic talent: As a Cal student, she interned for Root & Rebound, a re-entry advocacy nonprofit that helps the formerly incarcerated adjust to life on the outside.
And she brought the interest of her parents, Dave and Angelica Clark, in supporting her passion for social justice.
The Clarks recently made a generous gift to Basic Needs Student Holistic Support, which will directly benefit students in need by purchasing books, providing housing stipends, or meeting other immediate needs.
“We wanted to make a gift that would dovetail with Alexandra’s major and interests,” said Angelica. “We’d learned about Basic Needs through Cal Parents, which gave us a tour of the UC Berkeley Food Pantry. As a parent, it’s great to be able to have a direct impact on students who need some immediate assistance.”
Dave Clark is president of the investment counsel firm Everett Harris & Co., while Angelica serves on several non-profit boards after retiring from a 35-year career in the investment business. The couple lives in Pasadena, CA, and their younger daughter, Natalie, is a student at Claremont McKenna College.
The Clarks have been involved with Cal Parents, including serving on its board, since Alexandra’s freshman year.
“It was a good way to give back to the university and has helped us understand where to go for resources on campus,” Angelica explained. “Serving on the board allowed us to feel like we were more involved in our daughter’s education from afar.”
Their interaction as parents has also given them a better understanding of the university’s financial and educational challenges, added Dave Clark.
He’s been Berkeley Loyal since he graduated in 1982 with a degree in economics. In addition to their recent gift, he and Angelica have provided steady support to the Cal Fund and Parents Fund, and Intercollegiate Athletics, where Alexandra rowed with Cal Women’s Varsity Crew and played Club Women’s Water Polo
Next steps for Alexandra Clark include law school. In the meantime, she’s got an internship with a Los Angeles nonprofit that provides legal services to vulnerable populations. Ultimately, she plans to pursue criminal law or another form of public service.
And although they’re no longer card-carrying Cal Parents, Dave and Angelica Clark intend to continue their relationship with Berkeley.
“We’ve always been big believers in the mission of this university and I feel grateful that both Alexandra and I were able to attend,” said Dave. “Because of the ongoing financial pressures facing public universities, we’re happy to support it consistently to help it remain a world-class institution.”