Letter From the Editor
Pepperdine Magazine is the feature magazine for Pepperdine University and its growing community of alumni, students, faculty, staff, and friends.
Beyond DNA, what makes a family a family? Perhaps it is the qualities of support,
caring, empathy, trust, and loyalty that allow us to create family in many environments.
This issue of Pepperdine Magazine highlights some of those diverse family units that we form in the places where we dedicate our time and abilities. For Alan Beard (’94, MPP ’99) and Alec McNayr (’00) of McBeard Media, family is about creating a close, cooperative environment at work. For Mara Leigh Taylor (MA ’03, MA ’06), family is found in the encouragement among prison inmates as they struggle to alter their actions. For John Standley (’85), family is demonstrated in the thoughtful gift his father gave him and how Standley used that gift to help others through attentive customer service.
We are like family here at Pepperdine Magazine, where it takes a supportive team effort and hard work to produce this meaningful publication. As with any family, changes and shifts occur. I am honored to be serving as the magazine’s new editor, continuing the outstanding tradition set by former editor Megan Huard Boyle, who put her heart into the publication, significantly elevating its quality through her skillful guidance. Megan is continuing to use her talents to serve Pepperdine in other ways, while mentoring me in my new role.
In addition, hard-working senior writer Gareen Darakjian is the magazine’s new assistant editor, and writer Sophia Fischer has joined our staff.
And to you, our reader family, a hearty thank-you for your loyal support and readership. We write for you. So write to us, dear Waves family, at magazine.pepperdine.edu, and let us know what our Pepperdine family stories mean to you.
Ali B. Taghavi