Our tour leaders are enthusiastic and dedicated: we invite you to read about them. 2019 walking tour topics and dates will be announced in Spring 2019. Thank you for your interest and we look forward to seeing you this summer as we explore our diverse city!

Andrew AldenTerrain and Treasures: Reservoir Hill to San Antonio Park

Oakland writer Andrew Alden has written about Earth science for more than 20 years, primarily on ThoughtCo (geology.about.com), KQED (ww2.kqed.org/quest/author/andrew-alden/), and his Oakland Geology blog (oaklandgeology.wordpress.com/). He delights in speaking and leading walks to raise awareness of Oakland's remarkably rich geological heritage and tectonic setting. He is currently writing a book about "deep Oakland."

Susan AndersonVisions Toward Tomorrow: African-American Museum and Library at Oakland (Building Tour)

Susan is Interim Chief Curator at AAMLO. Her book, African Americans and the California Dream: A History, will be published by Berkeley-based Heyday Books.

Phil BellmanF. M. “Borax” Smith Estate (with Amelia Marshall)

Phil Bellman is a longtime East Oakland resident with interests in history, architecture and historic preservation. He served as an early member of the OHA Board of Directors and edited the OHA News for several years. He has led tours relating to Borax Smith both in Oakland and the Nevada desert for many years. Now retired, Phil worked with Kaiser Permanente in the field of medical education. 

Kathleen DiGiovanniFernwood, and Glenview

Kathleen Leles DiGiovanni is a long-time Oakland Heritage Alliance walking tour leader and a regular contributor to the OHA News. A librarian at the Oakland Public Library, Kathleen has logged thousands of hours working in the Oakland History Room, promoting and guiding exploration of Oakland's history through the library's rich resources. She thinks it's the best job in the world. In addition to this year's Fernwood and Glenview tours, Kathleen has also led walking tours for OHA in Lakeside Park, Brooklyn, and Montclair Village and Oakland Women’s History tours. 

Tom DebleyTemescal’s Broadway Historic Landmarks

Tom Debley, long time resident of Temescal, is a former journalist and public affairs officer who has written extensively about local history for area newspapers, the University of California and Kaiser Permanente. He is author of a biography of the physician who cofounded Kaiser Permanente. He is currently President of OHA.

Riley DotyTiles and Terracotta in Uptown Oakland

Riley Doty is a tile setter who has been working in the Bay Area since1978. He is a member of Artistic License, a guild of period revival artisans. He has done considerable research about the history of tiles and serves on the board of directors of Tile Heritage Foundation, a non-profit organizationdedicated to education and preservation of ceramic surfaces.

Dennis EvanoskyMountain View Cemetery

Dennis Evanosky is the publisher of the Alameda Sun and a free-lance writer with eleven published books, including East Bay Then and Now; San Francisco Then & Now; Lost San Francisco, Oakland’s Laurel District; Alameda’s Architectural Treasure Chest and two books about Mountain View Cemetery. 

He is currently the editor of the Alameda County Historical Society’s newsletter. Dennis served the Oakland Heritage Alliance as its newsletter editor for two years. He has received four Partners in Preservation Awards:  for a calendar featuring the Oakland Laurel district’s history; for restoring the Civil War section of Mountain View Cemetery; for assisting Bill Caldwell with Oakland: A Photographic Journey; and as a member of the Oakland Heritage Alliance’s walking-tour team.  He has teamed with Eric J. Kos to create 12 history calendars featuring both Oakland and Alameda. Eric and Dennis also created the web site www.oaklandhistory.com

Dennis has been a docent at Mountain View Cemetery and at the Pardee Home Museum for twenty-one years. He leads the City of Oakland’s walking tour of Preservation Park. His walking tours for the Oakland Heritage Alliance include the Laurel District, the Dimond District, Leona Heights, the Oakland Estuary, Oakland’s First Suburb (Preservation Park and the Pardee Home Museum); Oakland’s Redwoods and Mountain View Cemetery’s connection to the Civil War. He also hosts walking tours for the City of Alameda featuring that city’s history.

Dennis was born in Pittston, Pennsylvania and was raised in Maryland. He holds a master’s degree in German from the University of Maryland at taught German for the University of Maryland in Europe for nine years.

Kathryn (Kitty) HughesTracing Terraces: The Linda Vista Tract

Former city bicycle planner Kitty Hughes loves craftsman design, researching neighborhoods, and writing about Oakland. Kitty co-led this walking tour with Betty Marvin in 2014.

Ray KiddWest Clawson II: Industry on the Marsh, Sunday, August 5, 10 am–1:00 pm (with Betty Marvin and West Oakland Neighbors)

Ray is a community leader and activist with the West Oakland Neighbors and has lived in West Oakland since 1973.

Gary KnechtWholesale Produce Market & Waterfront Warehouse District

Gary Knecht has conducted walking tours of the Jack London District since 1988. He has intimate knowledge of the Wholesale Produce Market and Waterfront Warehouse District, where he has worked and lived since 1982. He holds a Master of Architecture degree from UC Berkeley and, prior to his retirement, spent 17 years as a historic preservation planner in the Oakland City Planning Department. He was a founding board member of Oakland Heritage Alliance, South of the Nimitz Improvement Council, and Jack London Improvement District. Currently he serves on the board of the Artists’ Legacy Foundation.

Pamela Magnuson-PeddleSteinway Terrace (with Betty Marvin)

Pamela Magnuson-Peddle loves the stories old buildings tell. She is an active member of the Oakland Heritage Alliance, including six years on the board and one year as President, and leads walking tours of both the Fruitvale and Laurel districts. Her published histories include articles for the Oakland Heritage Alliance Newsletter, MacArthur Metro, and the Alameda County Historical Society newsletter.  She has also written two self-guided walking tours of Oakland neighborhoods: Waterfront Warehouse District and Fruitvale on Foot. 

Amelia MarshallF. M. “Borax” Smith Estate (with Phil Bellman)

Amelia Sue Marshall is a writer who lives with her family on Peralta Creek. Her newest book, The East Bay Hills:  A Brief History (History Press, 2017) is available locally. Her first book, Oakland's Equestrian Heritage (Arcadia, 2008), coauthored with Terry Tobey, explores the rich lore of local horse people, from pioneer days through the present. Amelia is a board member of Oakland Heritage Alliance and the Metropolitan Horsemen's Association, in addition to serving as an officer for the East Bay Regional Park District Volunteer Trail Safety Patrols.

Betty MarvinTracing Terraces: The Linda Vista Tract (with Kathryn Hughes); West Clawson II: Industry on the Marsh (with Ray Kidd); Steinway Terrace  (with Pamela Magnuson-Peddle)

Betty Marvin studies local history and buildings in the Oakland City Planning Department’s Cultural Heritage Survey project.

Greg NovakSheffield Village

Greg grew up in Walnut Creek, and after graduating from college has lived most of his adult life in the east bay. Now a longtime Oakland resident, he has been very involved as a volunteer for various organizations such as being the Board President of the Sheffield Village Homeowner’s Association, and as a member of the Community Policing Advisory Board for the City of Oakland. He volunteers his time at many local community organizations such as Oakland Heritage Alliance, Habitat for Humanity and Children’s Fairyland to list a few. Greg volunteers time every summer as a camp counselor for Camp del Corazon, a non-profit camp for children with heart disease. He has a passion for historic renovation, is a musician and theater buff. When not holding open houses, you will likely find him running one of the numerous trails in the East Bay hills.

Richard OrlandoWeeds in the Urban Landscape

Richard has taught weed classes for nearly four decades in the Landscape Horticulture Department at Merritt College, a nationally renowned horticultural department. He has just completed his opus, Weeds in the Urban Landscape: Where They Come From, Why They're Here, and How to Live with Them, available at local bookstores. He has been accused of having never seen a weed he didn't like, and he is willing to acknowledge that this is almost true. 

Jon RuschMid-Century Downtown Oakland

Jon is an architectural historian who works in San Francisco at consulting firm ICF, where he contributes to rehabilitation, planning, and environmental compliance projects throughout the Bay Area. Jon frequently serves as lead or contributing author of historical resource studies dealing with mid-20th-century buildings and cultural landscapes. Prior to moving to Oakland, Jon earned an MA in historic preservation planning at Cornell University.

Stuart SwiedlerTerrace and the Forgotten Trestle, Saturday, July 21, 10 am–12:30 pm

Stuart J. Swiedler, is a physician-scientist who has lived in Oakland since 1989. He is author of the web site, The East Bay Hills Project (eastbayhillsproject.org) combines images of the railroad with aerial views to tell the story of the development of Montclair. The East Bay Hills Project was started to leave a photographic record and satisfy the curiosity of those seeking the basis for the changes to the area. His appreciation for the impact the railroad made to the area was derived from numerous bike rides and runs through the hills between Oakland and Mount Diablo with his wife Judy.  

West Oakland NeighborsWest Clawson II: Industry on the Marsh (with Ray Kidd and Betty Marvin)

West Oakland Neighbors,also known as WON, is a neighborhood group of residents and businesses that has met monthly since forming in the mid-90's.  Our boundaries are southof Emeryville, W. of San Pablo, and N. of  W.Grand.  westoaklandneighbors@gmail.com.