Clairbourn Announces New Board Member Manuel G. Grace – Alumni Parent and Trustee
The Board of Trustees is pleased to welcome Clairbourn alumni parent Manuel G. Grace to the Board. Manny and Casey’s two children, Alex and Zoe, attended Clairbourn from Pre-Kindergarten through 8th grade graduation, in 2013 and 2017. Given their 14 years of experience and engagement with the Clairbourn community, the Graces are a true Clairbourn family. Manny brings to the Board his knowledge and experience of private school education, particularly as it relates to issues of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI). Manny is an enthusiastic supporter of Clairbourn. He credits the nurturing and rigorous education his children received at Clairbourn as providing the foundation for their subsequent successes in high school, college and beyond.
Manny’s oldest child, Alexander, was a stellar student and respected class comedian at Clairbourn. Alex developed strong writing skills at Clairbourn, culminating in a poignant and hilarious speech which he delivered at his 8th grade graduation. Alex went on to attend Flintridge Prep, where he performed in the Comedy Sportz Improv team for four years. Alex continued doing improv comedy, during an otherwise studious undergraduate career at Columbia University. In May 2021, Alex graduated from Columbia with a BA in American History, focusing on the post-Civil War Reconstruction era. He is currently living and working in New York City, working in documentary film production. Alex appreciates the unique privilege of his Clairbourn experience. He maintains close ties with many of his Pre-K pals from Clairbourn.
Zoe, four years younger than Alex, blossomed as a student at Clairbourn, particularly in Middle School, where she consistently made the Dean’s List. Zoe participated in a number of theatre productions (Winnie the Pooh and Midsummer Night’s Dream), and was active in almost every sport offered at Clairbourn, most notably, soccer, softball and volleyball. After Clairbourn, Zoe attended Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy, where she continued her athletic career on both school and club volleyball teams, and served as a member and leader of the Black Student Union. Zoe excelled academically at FSHA, and also won a number of honors for her creative efforts in ceramic arts. In August 2021, Zoe entered her freshman year at Washington University in St. Louis, with fellow Clairbourn classmate, Natalie Chen, whose mother, Debbie Chen also serves on the Clairbourn Board of Trustees.
Manny attended the University of Notre Dame, where he graduated with a degree in Psychology. He then went on to obtain a law degree from the Columbia University Law School in 1982, and clerked for the Hon. Lawrence W. Pierce, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. After practicing corporate environmental law for several years in New York City, Manny moved to California to work as in-house Environmental Health and Safety counsel for The Walt Disney Company in Burbank. During his 29-year tenure at Disney, Manny has covered issues ranging from consumer product liability, environmental compliance and occupational safety. He has also served on numerous committees addressing issues of diversity and inclusion within the workplace. In his current capacity as Associate General Counsel, Manny has had a key role in shaping Disney’s compliance strategies during the Covid-19 pandemic.
In addition to his professional accomplishments, Manny has always been civically engaged in the wider community. Manny is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Notre Dame University Alumni Association and a current board member of the California State Parks Foundation. He is currently on the Board of Directors of Earthshot, a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring climate action through video games and virtual and immersive experiences. He is also a former Chairman of the Board of the Society of Product Licensor’s Committed to Excellence (SPLiCE). Manny is also a member of the Environmental Law Committee of the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers.
At Clairbourn, Manny and his wife Casey (also an attorney) served as the Annual Fund chairs for their children’s classes for two years. Manny also served as Cub Scout Master when Alex was young, and participated in many carnivals and other event committees over the years. He is excited to be joining the Clairbourn Board of Trustees at this important time in the future development of the school.
Clairbourn School, 8400 Huntington Drive, San Gabriel, (626) 286-3108 or visit www.clairbourn.org.