Marjanne Priest

Marjanne Priest was born and raised in the San Fernando Valley.  She lived in California for most of her life. She has two children and one grandchild. Marjanne attended dance classes and sociology classes at College of the Canyons, where she was able to exercise her artistic passion and learn more about her fellow students and their behaviors. She believes that her community college experience at COC was a turning point for her, as it provided her with both the physical expression for dancing and self-confidence she acquired through returning to the classroom as an adult.
In 1990 Marjanne, along with her sister-in-law Judy Cox, established The Betty Ferguson Foundation.  It started with a small group of seven women meeting in the Cox’s home and grew to more than 160 members. The Foundation’s mission was “to train develop and empower women and youth to be a vital force in society.”  To that end, Marjanne and the Betty Ferguson Foundation Board of Directors  established a scholarship endowment to benefit COC students. Later, the group established additional scholarship endowments that will award much-needed scholarship dollars to students in perpetuity.
She was a driving force behind many educational workshops for women and young girls, and local fund-raising events such as Vine 2 Wine and Woman of Honor that served many non-profit organizations within the Santa Clarita Valley, including Soroptimists of SCV, Zonta Club of the SCV Area, Carousel Ranch, Special Olympics, SCV Pregnancy Center, Circle of Hope, Inc., Sheila R. Veloz Breast Imaging Center/HMNMH, Make a Difference Day, COC Youth Orchestra, Hunger Defense Fund, and Mac’s Project.