Brea Old and New: Tick-Tock, History Isn't So Boring After All™ ~ Charlie the Clock

Teresa Hampson

  • Teresa Hampson makes history in retirement as BOUSD member

    6 years ago by

    Teresa Hampson(second from end) served on the BOHS school board longer than anyone else.


        School board member resigns: After 19 years Teresa Hampson, longest-serving school board member in the Brea Olinda Unified School District Brea Olinda United School District Board resigned on June 15. Teresa Hampson was first elected in 1994, and was returned to office four times. She and her husband Gary recently moved to in Sonoma County to be near their daughters Amy and Beth. Their son Brandon passed away June of 2004 .

          Teresa has been big influence of the City of Brea. She served on the Cultural Arts Commission, wrote the community’s best selling history book, and the first Blue Ribbon School application and the district’s first successful California Distingushed School application (both Fanning School).

            She was a room parent 24 times. Teresa was also a Girl Scout Leader, and active on the boards of the Brea Historical Society, Brea Family Resource Center, and BOHS Academic Booster Club, and the City’s Sphere of Influence Study.

              One of the biggest volunteer efforts on her part is the Brea 8K Classic Race, serving as Race Director five times, she helped to raise funds for scholarships and programs at Brea Olinda High School. The former high school teacher was instrumental in the passage of the District’s 1999 bond.

                “After all these years, I continue to be amazed at what a remarkable school district this is,” she said between tears. “It’s been a joy to be part of it.” Teresa said at her “Goodbye” party. Brea Superindent Skip Rolland noted, “Thank you, Teresa, for being that wonderful person to the Brea community and to me during my twelve years in this amazing, high performing and caring District. You will be missed, but I look forward to hearing about changes in the Sonoma County political scene within a year. You see, an outstanding volunteer community activist never retires.”

                  Any news? Give me a jingle (714)529-8561 or e-mail

  • Message from BOUSD School Board Member Teresa Hampson – Measure “E”

    7 years ago by

    Dear friends,

      The schools of Brea need YOU!

        Having served this community well for over a century, our district today is suffering due to many years of steadily declining State funding - and the future looks even bleaker. These schools where your children and mine grew and learned together (and where some of you and your parents did too) have lost 16 percent of their funding in the last five years - and always did manage on considerably less than almost all others. (The BOUSD is one of the OC's lowest-funded districts; Orange County also is one of the lowest-funded counties in California, and California ranks 47th in the nation in per-pupil funding.)

          Because of this funding disparity, Brea's great schools (where I've met most of you over the years) always have had to work harder to do more, but there comes a point where will alone won't get it...where so much has been lost that there's just no way to bridge this ever-widening gap. We're precariously close to reaching that point today, and - as a trustee of this district - I just can't find it in my heart to let that happen without trying my hardest to help.

            We starting laying people off here a decade ago, which has made every recent cut harder to bear, as there's just no "non-vital" positions left. Our classes are larger (the wonderfully effective kindergarten through third grade 20-to-1 class size reduction program is long gone; our largest high school class this year stands at 47 students). Our classrooms never are cleaned more often than every three days. Our extensive acreage is maintained by nothing more than a skeleton crew. And you must have seen our "white fleet" of maintenance vehicles driving around town, the oldest trucks dating from the 1960's! All funds from the 1999 general obligation bond were well spent on planned projects, but it always was known that needs would remain beyond this (as we just asked the community for $27 million at that time, even though the known need then was $85 million). New needs also arise as our buildings grow steadily older, especially the oldest of these: Laurel, much of which was built in 1922, Arovista and all the back buildings at BJH, built in 1956, and perhaps surprisingly, Country Hills, because it had to be built all-portable due to a shortage of funds at that time. Portable structures last only about 35 years, and that anniversary fast is approaching there.

              In our classrooms, larger numbers of students per teacher also make learning increasingly difficult. This problem can be alleviated somewhat through enhanced use of technology, which allows students more self-help for managing, storing and correcting work, as well as more direct access to online research. But our technology tools are aging, and no new state money in this area has been available for many years. Our parents (always stalwarts in raising funds for computers and more) also are growing tired of the heavy burden placed on them since all State school site improvement program funds (SIP) were cut some years back. It was this money that helped provide money for art and music, technology and other "enrichment" activities, and PTAs and PTOs increasingly are being asked to help fill this large gap.

                For all these reasons, for the future of this district, and for the health of this community, I'm strongly supporting BOUSD Measure E. I consider this an essential investment in the campuses this community has built and cared for over the years (and which we can't now allow to deteriorate for lack of funds). Measure E is an investment in Brea's future - a way to keep our community strong and ensure it stays a welcoming place for new generations to live and raise their children.

                  Please - if you see this as I do - vote yes on Measure E, strongly consider offering your name as an endorser and let your friends and neighbors know so by posting a sign on your lawn.

                    Teresa Hampson, member, BOUSD School Board

  • Charlie the Rockin’ Clock in Brea History’s Biggest Hits!

    7 years ago by

    Charlie the Clock and his kid crew in front of the Wildcat statue at BOHS - Brea Olinda High School.

      Tick-Tock, History isn't So Boring After All! ™

        Unity is strength... when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved. Mattie Stepanek

          With a little bit of community help, we can succeed beyond our expectations. CC

            Hi there!

              And welcome to our site! I'd like to give you a background about Brea's 1st young person's book: Charlie the Rockin' Clock in Brea History's Biggest Hits! -- a centennial celebration. Did I tell you we're late, but still hopeful. Oh well, what can I say!...

                In early 2015, I had an idea and contacted Heather Ashlyn Collins, a 2006 BOHS grad and recent grad of CSUF, to draw an animated caricature of Brea’s historic iconic "Charlie’s Clock." Thereafter I contacted a local print shop to make a cutout of the character. Charlie’s Clock was renamed “Charlie the Clock” as the clock belongs to everyone. We then held “The Face of Brea” contest at Edwards Brea Theater West 10 to celebrate Brea’s 98th birthday, followed by local events exhibiting the clock cutout. While in the process of making many, many, many people smile along the way, Charlie the Clock cutout served as a fun symbol and creative education tool in getting people excited about our centennial year. (See theater photo caption)

                  You'll see Charlie the Clock soon at Edwards Brea Stadium East 12 , Brea SummerFest, Brea Country Fair, and maybe our schools! 'Charlie the Clock' caricature cutout dazzled the crowds at the 28th annual Brea Summerfest, the 36th Brea Country Fair, and for a time was on exhibit at the Brea Museum, where he was taken out to visit events at our elementary schools fall 2015. Also, 'Charlie the Clock' was invited back to Edwards Brea Stadium West 10 the week of November 16, and sister theater Edwards Brea Stadium East 12 extended Charlie's visit through the week of Thanksgiving!

                    What fun we had as "Charlie the Clock" caricature cutout was invited back to Country Hills PTA's Annual Cougar Color Run Fundraiser 2016!

                      It was my hope that Charlie the Clock would become a mascot for the City of Brea celebrated as a symbol and learning tool in representing Brea’s rich history.

                        In February of 2016, I thought of a children’s centennial book featuring Charlie the Clock -- soon after discovering that it would be the first young person's book in Brea.

                          In a collaborative effort -- I brought together a team of very talented community people to create the book and subprojects. Former longtime Brean and author of the city's best-selling history book, Brea: Celebrating 75 Years and A Centennial History of the BOUSD, Teresa Hampson, was contacted to write the young person's history book. Also I connected with Heather Ashlyn Collins again to illustrate the book.

                            BOHS GITA Instructor Todd Salesky enlisted three of his students: Kyle Tam, Zoya Kahn, and Jennifer Choi, to build CharlietheClock.Club website. The book’s theme song: "Back Home" was written and sung by a 2017 BOHS senior choir member, Hayden Mangum.

                              My motto for life is “Never say never.” Thus, it was also my hope to collaborate on a promotional video to the tune of "Back Home," in an effort to showcase the city of Brea and its residents in reenacting the last chapter named "Party Time!" In this chapter local residents, young and old, congregate in Brea Downtown to celebrate a special party for the guest of honor: historical tour guide, Charlie the Clock!

                                Frozen in time: the book features Brea school kids, grades 3rd-6th: Roman M., Lauren T., Jarred G., Jesse H., Madison M., and Skyler S. along with Orange County Register longtime local news columnists, Susan Gaede aka “Newsy Suzie,” Terri Daxon, elementary teacher Jill Berrner, and former Brea student, Valeria Z.

                                  We also conducted a “Kids Imagine Brea Essay” contest, resulting in four winning essays on Brea's future from elementary students: Jessica L., Lauren A., Mollie C. and Haylee R., chosen by the Brea Education Foundation. The winning essays and photos will be showcased in the book.

                                    Additionally, we scheduled a panoramic photo shoot to feature as many local kids as possible in the book. Instead of the photo, it is a fun illustration spread across two pages.

                                      Read what BOUSD superintendent and local dignitaries had to say after reading the centennial children's history book:

                                        "I applaud the efforts of so many people rallying around Charlie the Clock to tell the history and timeless story of the City of Brea. The engaging story is told by Charlie the Clock and through the eyes of local children living in Brea. Charlie the Clock is a wonderful read for children of all ages." - Brad Mason, Ed.D. Superintendent, Brea Unified School District

                                          "What better way for our young students to experience Brea's past than a children's book! And not just any children's book but one that has a clock as its historical tour guide. They will remember the journey they are about to take for years. A journey into what made Brea the city it is today." - Don Schweitzer Former Brea Mayor

                                            "In order to make learning history both exciting and informative, the use of “Charlie the Clock” to travel through time to the various stages of Brea’s history is a creative new idea. It is an approach which will do much to help countless young people understand and appreciate the culture and history of Brea." - Wayne D. Wedin Former Brea City Manager and Councilman

                                              Charlie's Clues: Cover of the book. What does 10 and 12 mean in good ole' Brea?

                                                Of note: Part of the proceeds from the book will go back to Brea Olinda Unified School District through the Brea Education Foundation.

                                                  They Say Good Things Take Time!

                                                    Be sure to visit Charlie The Clock on Instagram!!

                                                      Thank you for your time,

                                                        Carolyn Campbell 😊

                                                          creative business development/project manager

                                                            Brea's landmark, Charlie's Clock, located in Brea Downtown on the corner of Birch Street and Madrona Avenue. Photo courtesy of Greg Voisan Panoramic Photography

                                                              The Test of Time: A Brea Landmarks List

                                                                Good Old Brea Clock, 300 W. Birch St. (at Madrona)… The two-sided timepiece served as the stationmaster’s clock at the Santa Fe Railyards in Riverside, but both the duration of its time there and its origin remain unknown. It was brought to Brea in 1975 by a man named Charlie to advertise his clock shop in the old Brea Hotel building (east side, Brea Boulevard at Ash Street). In 1979, a car ran into it, causing major but repairable damage. When Brea began to redevelop its old downtown, there were plans to preserve the Brea Hotel and other buildings in a historic block, but developers couldn’t be found to take on the potentially costly project. Instead, in 1994, the buildings were razed and the clock (which the city had bought because local folks had come to consider it a landmark) went into storage. As Brea’s new downtown approached its opening in the late 1990s, the clock was completely renovated. Today, its base, post and the casing around its face remain original, but its mechanism has been recast and reassembled, and the unique calligraphy of its original face and hands has been carefully recreated, with neon added so it can be read at night. During the city’s centennial year, Charlie the Clock has experienced new life. Recreated in costume form and starring in this book, Brea’s landmark timepiece has become a fresh symbol of Brea’s historic heritage.

                                                                  Written by Teresa Hampson