Nina’s Parents


Nadia Quintana Davies

Nadia Quintana Davies was born in Casablanca, Morocco as Nadia Quintana Bendayan of Spanish parents. Because of the Spanish Civil War, she and her father left Morocco going into exile to Mexico in1942. She lived in Mexico until she was 16, then moved to the United States to live with an aunt in San Francisco while she finished her high school education. ). Her first two languages were French and Spanish. She learned English when she arrived in San Francisco, graduating with honors after 2 years.

She attended Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, but finished her Bachelor’s Degree from San Francisco State University (1961). Her Master Degree came from San Diego State University.

Her professional career was that of a Teacher (Spanish, French and English as a Second Language) and District Counselor. She worked primarily at the high school level, in the Fremont Unified School District, the Grossmont Union High School District (San Diego area) and the San Diego Unified School District. She retired after 34 years of service. For over 20 years she annually collected toys and candy which were distributed at Christmas time to needy students in several elementary schools in the area. She was also Teacher of the Year for San Diego County in the 1980′s.

In addition to all of the above, in the 1960′s Nadia developed a teaching strategy that was extremely effective in teaching foreign languages. She even wrote a book for foreign language teachers so that they could adopt her strategies. She titled it “The Kinesthetic Approach to Teaching Foreign Languages.” More than 6 textbook publishers rejected it. Unfortunately she was 20 years ahead of her time. She also introduced a computer based drill and practice program for Spanish in the 1970′s.

Outside of her professional career, she bore and raised two daughters, was the world wide representative for the Ballet Folclorico Nacional Aztlan de Mexico; managed a real estate portfolio; and worked closely with her husband in various business ventures.

After retirement, she was elected to a high school district Board of Education.

Thomas P. Davies

Thomas P. Davies is a Californian, born in Glendale (Los Angeles County) during the Depression. His parents were Midwesterners who moved to California in 1927. His father rose to be the General Manager of a large Chevrolet Dealership before his untimely death in 1939. His mother worked to support the family.

Thomas was educated in the public schools in Glendale. After high school he continued his education in the local community college ultimately graduating in 1957 from UCLA with a degree in Mathematics and a minor in Physical Science. Following his military service (U.S. Army) he returned to UCLA to finish his General Secondary teaching credential. Dr. Davies worked his way through all his college programs.

His first teaching job was with the Los Angeles Unified School District. Later he moved to San Jose, California, working for the San Jose Unified School District as a mathematics teacher at the high school and junior high school level. After several years he was the Mathematics and Science supervisor for the district. It was during this period that he received his Masters Degree in Educational Administration. He also worked with Dr. Patrick Suppes of Stanford University and his team in field testing computer based programs in mathematics (elementary and junior high school). He was married in 1965 to his wife of 49 years, Nadia Quintana Davies and with her raised two daughters.

In 1968 he took a position as Mathematic Coordinator with the San Diego County Office of Education. In 1972 he became the Director of Curriculum and instruction for the County of San Diego. While working with the Department of Education he continued to work with Dr. Suppes writing projects to fund the computer based system in San Diego County. This involved the use of teletype machines. The internet would not arrive for 20 years. He also brought a computer based dial in system for elementary students to the county. This allowed them to hone their arithmetic skills from their homes.

It was during this time also that he became Chairman of the editorial panel of the Arithmetic Teacher (a monthly journal), a publication of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. The work with Dr. Suppes became the basis for his Doctoral Thesis “An Evaluation of Computer Assisted Instruction Using A Drill and Practice Program in Mathematics” He received his Doctorate from the United States International University in San Diego in 1971.

Dr. Davies left education in 1980 to start and run several successful businesses until he ultimately retired from active participation in 1996.

In 1990 he was elected to the Grossmont High School Board of Education and in 1994 was elected to the San Diego County Board of Education. He retired from public service in 1998.