The women who inspire KTVU’s Gasia Mikaelian and Pam Cook

Gasia Mikaelian
I am lucky to be surrounded by strong women every day. From my coworkers in front of the camera and behind the scenes here at KTVU to my dear sisters and my beloved Mom.

Even though it’s been decades since I was in her classroom, I think often of my first-grade teacher at Joe Michell Elementary in Livermore — Mrs. Clark. She was such a warm, loving presence. She always encouraged all of us to do our best in whatever way we could and she made learning fun.

We’d play Heads Up 7 Up in the classroom. If a child had a loose tooth that was becoming bothersome, she’d gently help that tooth pop out and always with a smile and a hug. She also held spelling bees and would take the winners to Loard’s Ice Cream on Second Street. We’d have ice cream sundaes and even better than that— special time with our favorite teacher.

I was an "active child" and had a hard time sitting still. Instead of chastising me, Mrs. Clark would gently guide me back on task.

Now that I’m a parent myself, I marvel at the patience Mrs. Clark showed all her students, every single day. My spirit was allowed to soar, and I learned that learning can be very rewarding. She nurtured a love of reading and writing that I am happy to have carried with me through the years, and I think that had a lot to do with my chosen profession.

If I could, I’d shout it from the rooftops: Thank you, Mrs. Clark! And then I’d take her for a sundae at Loard’s...this time, my treat!  

Pam Cook
I am fortunate to have many strong, supportive women in my life, and I want to recognize and thank "that mom at school."

You know her. That mom you can always call when you're running late and is happy to hang out at the playground to give your child extra time to play until you can get there.

The mom who always signs up for the tough jobs at fundraisers: set-up, clean-up, and collecting raffle items. My mom told me if you need to get something done ask the working mom with two kids. She will somehow find time to make that batch of cupcakes, volunteer in the classroom, and help with the party or field trip. I am a better mom and better at juggling that family-work-life balance, because of you. Thank you!