Stevenson has tapped a new president for its Alumni Association, Jay Dolata ‘95 has been selected to serve as the new president of the Association of Stevenson Alumni (ASA). Jay is an active alum and an enthusiastic ambassador for the School in the local community; he is also a proud current Stevenson parent: his daughter, Brogan, is in the Class of 2026.
Jay was a boarding student for his four years at RLS. Jay then attended St. Mary’s College, where he earned a BA in English and met his wife, Chloe. Together, they moved to Chloe’s home state of Michigan, and he spent eight years working in advertising in Detroit. Shortly after Brogan’s birth in 2007, Jay and Chloe returned to California and settled in Carmel—opening Carmel Belle, a popular restaurant. After a decade at Carmel Belle, they sold it in order to open Elroy’s Fine Foods, a community market in Monterey that has now been in business for about a year.
While Jay’s post-Stevenson path took him away from home, he says he always felt drawn back: “One of the things that makes Stevenson so special to me is its magical setting—the forest, the evening fog, the beach, the world class events. It’s an unforgettable backdrop and it makes you want to come back and visit.” And, despite the time he spent away, his ties with the community always remained tight. He explains, “I made a lot of great friends and connections at Stevenson, and over the years I’ve stayed in touch with the School by attending reunions, holiday parties, and alumni events.” He links much of his adult success back to his experience at the School, saying “Stevenson helped to prepare me for life by instilling confidence in my formative years to go out in the big world as an adult and pursue passions that drive me to live my best life.”
Having a daughter at the school has helped Jay feel even more connected to the community, since it gave him the opportunity to volunteer his time on campus, offer financial support, and participate in School events. Jay got more deeply involved with the RLS alumni office in 2019, when he agreed to help recruit his classmates to attend their 25th year reunion. Unfortunately, the in-person reunion was canceled and rescheduled for a later date—but an online reunion was held in its place. Jay hosted a virtual cook-along for reunion participants.
Reflecting upon his decision to accept the invitation to serve as the ASA president, Jay explains, “Our alumni are a talented, powerful, creative, and influential group of people, and I’m looking forward to getting to know many of them better. It’s my mission to find out what will engage them to get even more involved. The pandemic invited many of us to reflect on our own lives; where we came from and what got us to where we are today. That sense of connection is what I’d like to tap into as we build a system of resources and support to benefit alumni, current Pirates, and the School that makes it all possible.”