West Hills College Coalinga lost a true friend in the passing of one of the City of Coalinga pioneers - Dorothy Allen in 2004.
Mrs. Allen, who died at the age of 97, was raised during the city's early years. She met her husband, M.J. "Buster" Allen, when he worked as superintendent of the Pleasant Valley Farming Company during the 1920s. The Allens eventually became owners of the company and many years later Mrs. Allen and her family donated 223 acres of their farmland to start the Farm of the Future at West Hills College.
That gift has allowed the college to create a model for innovative water and soil management practices. Using precision agriculture methods including GPS and GIS, college students now have the opportunity to prepare for careers in 21st century agriculture. Farming was good to the Allen family and the Allens responded to that success with a generosity that few have matched. Not only did they donate the farmland but they also donated money to light the arena at the college rodeo grounds and they supported the rodeo program and the college in many other ways.
We at West Hills were saddened by Mrs. Allen's passing but we are proud that her legacy will live on during coming years as students enjoy the wonderful facilities at West Hills that were made possible by her generosity.