Mare Island’s Founders Day: “Standing Together” Speaker Series

Mare Island's Founders Day: "Standing Together" Speaker Series

Founders Day is a weekend celebration filled with events commemorating the day, Sept 16th 1854, when Admiral David Farragut officially opened Mare Island; three days of events taking place around the island.

Join us for a special speakers series, Thursday, Sept 14th, 6PM at St. Peters Chapel, 1181 Walnut.

‍This presentation will explore the journey that led Vallejo to become among the most diverse cities in the Nation, and how Mare Island Naval Shipyard factored into that journey. A panel of speakers will explore how Mare Island, the jobs it offered, and the exigences of war combined to draw to Vallejo a population that is recognized as being among the most ethnically diverse in the Nation. The panel will explore how that population interacted in an era of cultural evolution to address systemic racism and women’s rights, to serve together as a vital component of our Nation’s arsenal of defense. The panel includes:

‍Marian Hopwood – president of our Vallejo Chapter of the Filipino American National Historical Society – her family connection to MI dates to 1924.

‍Brendan Riley – The European Ethnic Communities – Journalist, Historian and Author who has written extensively about Vallejo and Mare Island.

‍Helen Zajac – Women in the Workforce – Zajac began work at Mare Island Naval Shipyard as a temporary clerk stenographer, working her way through the Shipyard’s Upward Mobility Program to positions in management; she is a veteran of many leadership positions including with Navy Yard Association, the North Bay YMCA, and the National Association of Retired Federal Employees.

‍Jake Sloan – Standing up to Discrimination – Author and Cofounder of one California’s largest labor management consulting firms; Jake was a former worker at Mare Island pipefitter and member of a group of African Americans who stood up against discrimination during the early years of the Civil Rights Era.

‍A reception will follow on the lawn outside the Chapel. $5 in advance, $10 at door, with $5 discount for members.


Date(s) - Thu, Sep 14, 2023
6:00 pm to 8:00 pm


St. Peter’s Chapel
1181 Walnut Avenue, Mare Island, Vallejo


Upcoming events at this location