Come to share, discover, and connect with our school community - over drink and food in the informal, round-table setting of our Community Salon Series! These free community events are part of our wider Urban Engagement Program and feature members of our school community, sharing their expertise and spearheading conversation. It is geared towards parents, faculty/staff, alumni and upper school students interested in the salon's theme.
Our next Salon will take place on February 12th - New Frontiers in the Sciences: from Biotech to Particle Physics - with parent speakers: Amanda Kahn-Kirby and Philippe Grenier.
The doors open at 6pm, with formal sharing from 6:15pm-7:30pm. More informal conversation may extend beyond. The event itself is free and free childcare (with food) is available from 6-8:00 for students, PK-8th grade.
RSVP form forthcoming
Philippe holds a PhD in particle physics from the Commissariat à l’Energie Atomique in France. After fulfilling his obligatory French military duties in 1996, Philippe was admitted to the French National Center For Scientific Research in the particle physics division. After working in laboratories in France and Switzerland, he moved to San Francisco in 2002 to work at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory on behalf of the French government. He has been a member of one of the two experiments that discovered the Higgs Boson at the world’s largest particle accelerator, the LHC, at the European Organization for Nuclear Research CERN in Geneva, Switzerland.
Philippe is currently working at SLAC and has recently been appointed Deputy Director of the Elementary Particle Physics Division. He is also the deputy project leader for a collaboration of several hundred physicists and engineers from all over the world with the goal of developing and constructing the next-generation vertexing particle detector to be installed at the LHC in 2025. He manages the scientific aspects and financial budget for the United States. Philippe was born and raised in Aurillac, France. He and his wife, Heather, have two sons, Tristan and Roman.
Amanda Kahn-Kirby - Group Leader of Precision BioModeling, BioElectron Technology Corporation
Amanda's love for biology began with an exceptionally talented teacher in high school, leading to an undergraduate degree in Biology at Columbia. After a brief foray into teaching science at the Haverford School and Phillips Exeter summer school, she came out west to earn my neuroscience doctorate with Cori Bargmann at UCSF. Both her graduate and postdoctoral work focused on the microscopic yet powerful worm, the genetic model organism C. elegans. For the last decade, she has led mechanism-of-action and biomarker discovery projects to support pharmaceutical R&D, first in the HIF/anemia program at FibroGen in San Francisco, and now at BioElectron in Mountain View. When not working on BioElectron's translational programs for pediatric mitochondrial disease and adult neurodegeneration, Amanda enjoys spending time outdoors with Mason Kirby and her two children, Julia and Miles.
Our second Salon took place on November 28th in the Arts Pavillion. The event featured two parent speakers, prominent in the field, Ximena Ares and Brian Ferrall.
Our salon series launched on October 16, with about 60 faculty, staff, parents and students sharing in conversation on the theme of civic and political engagement. The evening featured parent speakers Andrea Dew Steele, founder of Engage America, and Mark Mullen, founder/CEO of BeTheWave, and was moderated by Urban Engagement Coordinator, Michelle Haner and International High School senior and founder of Bay Area Student Activists, Zoe Benjamin.
For more information about the Salon Series or the Urban Engagement Program, please contact Urban Engagement Coordinator, Michelle Haner, at urbanengagement@
Stephan, whose mother is American and father French, was born & raised in France. He holds a French degree in Business Law and an MBA in International Finance. Stephan began his career as a stockbroker in France, working for the French equivalent of the SEC. In 1991, while already living in San Francisco, Stephan passed the series 7 exam and worked for Charles Schwab on their development projects in Europe. Stephan has travelled extensively, namely through Central Asia with a backpack for a full year in 1990 (including a memorable hitchhiking experience from the Iranian border to Paris). To this day, Stephan has visited over 70 countries. He is a true citizen of the world.
In 1992, born from his entrepreneurial spirit and his total passion for travel, Stephan founded Go West Tours, a San Francisco based company, developing land travel programs into USA & Canada for international tourism professionals (B2B only). This includes designing itineraries, selecting & contracting with all parties i.e. hotels, restaurants, transportation, attractions, guides; as well as troubleshooting while groups are on the road. The company is working with tourism professionals from 32 countries (still B2B only), selling programs throughout the USA & Canada to over 55,000 passengers yearly, booking about 210,000 room nights yearly, employing 55 full time staff (in San Francisco, NYC, Montreal, Frankfurt & Paris), and contracting services with over 120 tour directors. The company has been developed and co-owned with Florence Solal, his wife and business partner for over 20 years.
Industry involvement includes:
Board of Directors, Receptive Services Association of America (RSAA), 2002-2010
President, RSAA, 2004 & 2005
Chair, National Tours Association (NTA) Growth Committee, 2008-2009
Member, NTA, 1997-Present
Over the last few years, Florence & Stephan have worked at developing a real estate portfolio. Amongst other commercial/rentals real estate investments, they operate and manage 4 small boutique San Francisco hotels.