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communications infrastructure it was impossible to connect resources with needs—a disaster at a massive scale. “Our Tac Ops team went in right away with boots on the ground,” Toch said. “We partnered with NetHope to set up information channels, connect rural communities with resources, and not only speed up delivery of humanitarian aid but follow their overall progress.” Cisco also recognizes its responsibility to give back at home in Silicon Valley. “When our CEO Chuck Robbins announced that Cisco would donate $50 million to help address homelessness, it wasn’t about writing a check, or about micromanaging the efforts of public agencies. We partnered with Destination: Home, and offered resources and expertise with what needs to be a large-scale and sustained effort if it’s going to succeed. Hopefully other companies will be motivated to contribute as well. “The tech industry is disrupting the housing market,” Toch continued. “Homelessness is happening to families, people working one or two jobs and living in campers by the side of the road. If they’re turning over 80 or 90 percent of their income to housing, how can they put food on the table, pay for health insurance, and keep the lights on? What about the teachers, the nurses, the daycare providers and firefighters? When they have to commute in, they don’t feel connected to the community, and their quality of life suffers. How are companies going to find good employees, how can the whole ecosystem be healthy when people who are an important part of the community are getting pushed out? “The old way of business is winners and losers,” Toch added. “Today we need to find the win-win. We all have to incorporate social justice into business ventures. We need transparency, collaboration, and expertise sharing if we’re going to solve tomorrow’s challenges.” Marketing manager Alexis Raymond said that as a boss, Toch “encourages us to push ourselves professionally and gives us opportunities to shine. She also reminds us to spend time with family. She never wants us to forget to balance our commitment to our jobs with the need to appreciate the other aspects of our lives.” Family Matters “Before joining Cisco I was nervous about making the switch from the nonprofit sector to high tech,” Toch said. “I was raising my son who has special needs. Cisco’s philosophy is, take care of yourself, and your family, and show up ready to work. I’ve been able to do the work that I love, work from home some days, and have the flexibility to be there for my son. Cisco is amazing in this regard.” Katherine’s husband Ken Carvalho owns City Towing in San Jose. Toch describes him as “kind of a renaissance man” whose custom carpentry is so creative and high quality that he’s developed a nice side business by word of mouth. He’s also very involved in the Stephen Ministries at St. Catherine’s Church. “Kenny inspires me. He is very smart, patient, thoughtful, and a kind soul with a big heart. When we take our boat out, he gets to fish, I get to read a good book. When we make a family dinner, I cook, he barbecues. He’s a can-do guy and always has lots of projects going.” The couple first met during a wine tasting event at a Morgan Hill winery. “My first impression of her was this attractive, confident woman with a warm inviting smile,” Carvalho said. “I’ve come to know her as a genuine, loving, intelligent, amazing person who puts the needs of others in front of her own. I am so blessed to have her as my wife.” Their blended family includes six adult children, with the youngest nearing college age. Her son Josh just graduated from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business in June. “As a kid I enjoyed our routine of going for a walk most every day,” Josh said. “As soon as my mom got home from work we’d head out the door for an hour or so to get some exercise and recap the day and what needed to be done the next day. What inspires me is her simple way with people. She always knows how to connect, what to say. She taught me that whoever I meet, there’s something that connects me to that person. It’s my job to find out what it is. I really look up to her for that.” Vision for the Future Toch is always on the go, but she looks forward to getting more involved in local community service once their youngest is off to college and things slow down a little. She and her husband are already laying plans for the future. “We’re family oriented,” Toch said. “We bought property up in Boulder Creek and we want to do everything there with sustainability in mind. Use the redwoods on the property to build a family cabin with room for our kids and grandkids to visit. Grow our own organic vegetables. A place we can all relax, enjoy nature and just practice doing nothing!” A blended family: Katherine Toch with husband Ken Carvalho (L), granddaughter Olivia Quintana, daughter Haley Toch, and son Josh Carvalho GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018 gmhtoday.com 87 Their blended family includes six Family Matters communications infrastructure it was “Before joining Cisco I was nervous about adult children, with the youngest nearing impossible to connect resources with college age. Her son Josh just graduated making the switch from the nonprofit needs—a disaster at a massive scale. from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of sector to high tech,” Toch said. “I was “Our Tac Ops team went in right Business in June. raising my son who has special needs. away with boots on the ground,” Toch “As a kid I enjoyed our routine of Cisco’s philosophy is, take care of your- said. “We partnered with NetHope to set going for a walk most every day,” Josh self, and your family, and show up ready up information channels, connect rural said. “As soon as my mom got home from to work. I’ve been able to do the work communities with resources, and not work we’d head out the door for an hour that I love, work from home some days, only speed up delivery of humanitarian and have the flexibility to be there for my or so to get some exercise and recap the aid but follow their overall progress.” day and what needed to be done the next Cisco also recognizes its responsibility son. Cisco is amazing in this regard.” day. What inspires me is her simple way Katherine’s husband Ken Carvalho to give back at home in Silicon Valley. with people. She always knows how to owns City Towing in San Jose. Toch “When our CEO Chuck Robbins connect, what to say. She taught me that describes him as “kind of a renaissance announced that Cisco would donate $50 whoever I meet, there’s something that man” whose custom carpentry is so cre- million to help address homelessness, it ative and high quality that he’s developed connects me to that person. It’s my job to wasn’t about writing a check, or about find out what it is. 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