HomeEditors' PicksBeloved CHS fiscal specialist set to retire this year

Beloved CHS fiscal specialist set to retire this year

Published April 4, 2024

BY DANIELA FOLEY

Diana Vita, the 17-year fiscal and community services program specialist at Carmel High School, is set to retire May 17 after serving as a beloved staff member and leaving a lasting impact by connecting teens to volunteer opportunities and providing management of finances for student organizations.

Whether it is writing the daily bulletin, managing payments for sports and club events or corresponding with students and organizations for volunteering opportunities, the dedicated staff member has allowed CHS to continue working as a well-oiled machine.

Even after working at CHS for the past 17 years, Vita’s love for the Padre community has continued to grow.

“I love working at the school because the kids are so entertaining and fun,” Vita says, “and every year is different and each day is a new day.”

Diana Vita, who has been working at CHS for the past 17 years, is known for her positive personality and professionalism. (photo by DANIELA FOLEY)

Over the years, the long-term Padre’s contribution to the local community has become clear through the fundraising event she initiated in order to combat food insecurity in Monterey Bay: Empty Bowls. Ceramic bowls made by freshman geography students are sold each year at a fundraising event where the proceeds go directly to the Food Bank for Monterey County.

“Our first Empty Bowls event at CHS has been my favorite memory,” Vita explains. “We really did not know how it would turn out or if the community would come so that was pretty awesome to see.”

Not only has Vita left a school-wide tradition of fundraising through such a beneficial event, she has also worked the financial portion of her job incredibly efficiently. Throughout the school day, the ASB secretary processes any financial transactions concerning student activities, ranging from sports to prom to mock trial. Bill Schrier, a CHS social studies teacher and mock trial coach, notes the importance of Vita on campus and her help to different clubs on campus.

“She’s indispensable,” Schrier says. “I can’t imagine having done mock trial on the scale we have done without having her basically paying our bills, managing all the money coming in and out of the account, working with vendors and everything we have ever needed has been done immediately and well.” 

Having worked closely with the long-term staff member for the past three years, CHS librarian Phil Crawford explains how the ASB secretary has fostered productivity and efficiency on campus. 

“Vita does all the ASB stuff,” Crawford says. “She takes care of the money for field trips, takes care of prom tickets, has all the CHS merch and does a lot with Empty Bowls. She is totally immersed in the school.”                                                                                                     

Vita began her career working in the winery industry after receiving her degree in Food Science from Cornell University. However, prior to moving to the United States at 18 to pursue her personal education, Vita lived on a farm in South Africa. Even now, decades later, the South African native continues to live a similar lifestyle, taking care of eight beehives and a vegetable garden on her farm. 

Once the bookkeeper and beekeeper retires, she is looking forward to producing honey, taking care of the produce on her farm and helping her husband, Greg, who still currently works in the wine industry.

In the meantime, Vita is spending her last weeks enjoying the campus culture at Carmel High. 

“I am absolutely going to miss the students here and all the daily interactions,” Vita explains. “I really enjoy working here. It is a wonderful school with great children, and most people here are very nice, polite and sweet. I will definitely miss all the kids and the teachers.”

Though Diana Vita’s final day at CHS is scheduled for May 17, she hopes for the ability to train the new employee taking her position prior to her official retirement date in order to adjust them to the computer programming she works with on a daily basis.

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