Atherton resident Gloria Kennett passes away at 101

by Contributed Content on September 27, 2023

Atherton resident Gloria Kennett passed away peacefully in her sleep on September 16  at the age of 101. She leaves behind a legacy as a devoted wife, mother, proud grandmother and great-grandmother, cherished friend to many, and an unwavering pillar in the community.

A Funeral Mass will be held at the Nativity Church, 210 Oak Grove Ave, Menlo Park on October 17, 2023, at 10:30 am.

Gloria was the second of four children born to Joseph and Helen Greenbach. Gloria and her siblings, William, Katherine, and Joseph were raised in San Francisco. Her siblings have preceded her in death. At the young age of 16, Gloria graduated from Lowell High School in San Francisco, displaying her early academic prowess. She went on to dedicate herself to the family business before furthering her education at Stanford University, where she graduated with a degree in Economics.

Following her graduation, Gloria married John Tehaney, and together they had three children: Daniel, Ken, and Lauren. Years later Gloria and John divorced. In 1960 she met her lasting love of her life, Dr. William Kennett, at a last-minute blind dinner and bridge date. On May 27, 1961, they married and embarked on a lifelong journey together. Bill had three children: Katharine, Carol, and Celia. Gloria and Bill blended their families together with tireless love and compassion.

In the 1980’s, Bill and Gloria played pivotal roles in the establishment of the Sequoia Hospital Foundation. Their visionary leadership has led to the Foundation raising nearly $95 million to bolster the mission, personnel, and programs of Dignity Health Sequoia Hospital. Gloria chaired the Foundation board twice, successfully leading a major capital campaign. Additionally, she and her husband Bill started the Foundation’s annual golf tournament, now known as the Steve San Filippo Memorial Golf Tournament.

Gloria was a dedicated philanthropist for over seven decades. Following the passing of Bill in August 2004, Gloria established the Dr. Kennett Memorial Nursing Scholarship program, which has since granted over $1.5 million in scholarships to 140-plus students and raised an additional $1 million to support future scholarships. The program is a testament to who she was: generous, kind, caring, and dedicated to supporting nurses and community. Gloria was also a member of the Peninsula Volunteers and a supporter of the Mid-Peninsula Symphony.

Gloria is survived by her six children, Katharine Gallison Stevens (Joseph-deceased), Daniel Tehaney (Ryan Rayston), Carol Douglass (John-deceased), Ken Tehaney (Carolyn Rianda), Dr. Celia Hull (David), and Lauren Teel (Richard). She had 13 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, please make contributions to the Sequoia Hospital Foundation Kennett Nursing Scholarship Endowment, 170 Alameda, Redwood City, CA 94062 or the Peninsula Volunteers, Inc., 800 Middle Ave, Menlo Park, CA 94025.

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