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Havens fourth grade teacher, Katie Jepsen, passed away on Saturday, September 14. She has been a beloved teacher at Havens since 2004. Her commitment and love of teaching and learning has been an inspiration to students, parents, and colleagues. One of her greatest skills was being able to identify the individual needs and strengths of all of her students.


“I have been so blessed to be on the fourth grade team with Katie. She has made me a better teacher. Her expertise on 'everything 4th grade’ will be sorely missed,” said Aileen Finney. “The teachers and staff each received a packet of seeds today so we can remember Katie and continue to ‘grow the love’ of teaching that she embodied every day.”


Ms. Jepsen loved all things in nature. Some of her favorite units included teaching geology and the natural resources of California. She enjoyed sharing outdoor experiences with her students including plein air painting, picking up trash in Piedmont Park, and field trips to Sibley Park, the Botanical Gardens, and especially visiting the elephant seals at Ano Nuevo. 


One of Ms. Jepsen’s greatest legacies is the Havens’ school garden that welcomes all visitors using the Bonita entrance. She would often be found before school tending to the plants. She loved creating urban farmers from even the most reluctant gardeners. Her classes would harvest the vegetables they planted, make salads, and share their bounty with other classes. She has inspired many kids to enjoy eating vegetables. 

Several fifth grade students fondly remembered working in the school garden. They shared laughter over trying radishes and are excited to work with the current 4th grade classes.


Celebration of Life Memorial Service was held on Friday, October 11th. Here are some pictures from the event:

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Photo Book Memories

In time we would like to create a photo book for Katie's family showcasing as many of her years at Havens as possible. We would love it to encompass the full breadth of Katie's time with us. This would be a big project and we would welcome lots of help :) If anyone knows of someone with a talent for type of thing, please pass along their details to We will also be reaching out to the broader community in the next few weeks.

Stories & Memories

As a long-time beloved teacher at Havens, Katie made an impact on so many lives. Share your stories whether you are a student, colleague, or friend. We'd like to incorporate these memories of Katie into creating a photo book for her family and share some of them on this site. Please email to share your stories

Financial Contribution

Many of you have asked how to make a financial contribution in support of Ms Jepsen’s daughter.

We are able to accept check or cash donations until Friday, October 25th. Checks should be made payable to HPC, but clearly noted “Jepsen Family Gift” in the memo line. Donations can be hand delivered to the Havens office or mailed to PEF. We ask any donations be in an envelope and labelled as follows: Attention Betty Winnacker/HPC, PEF Office. If mailing your donation the address is: PEF Office, 401 Highland Ave, Piedmont CA 94611.

If you have an idea for giving or support, please contact

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