Capital Public Radio is honored by the support of many individuals throughout our listening area. CapRadio Champions is our opportunity to share their stories.
Davis residents, Tom and Virginia (Ginny) Cahill have been listening to Capital Public Radio since the station hit the air waves in 1979, giving faithfully each year in support of classical music. Along with their love of music, Tom and Ginny have a deep love and appreciation for the outdoors. This love has taken them all over the world, where they have been able to pursue their professional and personal interests together.
Tom grew up in rural New England which is where his love of classical music first blossomed. His mother was a classically trained Julliard pianist. He has vivid memories of her playing the piano that connected him with the music instantly.
Early in their marriage, Tom and Ginny spent a year living and working in Saclay, France. Tom was serving as a NATO fellow at the Centre de’Etudes Nuclearies, and France was a perfect fit for Ginny, as she has a Masters in French and is fluent in the language.
In 1967, after returning from France, they settled in Davis where Tom joined the faculty at the University of California teaching Physics. Ginny taught French at a night school when their children were growing up. When their two now-grown children were in 2nd and 5th grade, Ginny went back to school and received her law degree with a focus on Water Law at UC Davis. She went on to have a long, prestigious law career including 8 years as a Deputy in the Attorney General’s office. Post retirement, she continues to teach Water Law classes at UC Davis and consult on Water Law. Tom specialized in applying nuclear and atomic techniques to air pollution, and designed and ran the national network protecting visibility at US parks and monuments for 20 years.
Tom and Ginny feel lucky that through their work they have been able to travel to some of the “best places in the world” including nearly every National Park where they hiked and rock-climbed with their family. During their careers, they were also able to combine their expertise to work together on a case for the preservation of Mono Lake. Tom was an expert in the dust particles blowing around the lake and Ginny was an expert on the side of the streams which flowed into the lake. After officially retiring in 1994, Tom founded the DELTA Group (Detection and Evaluation of Long-range Transport of Aerosols) to study aerosol impacts on global climate at UC Davis, a program he is still involved with today.
The Cahill’s are big fans of A Prairie Home Companion and From the Top. They recently joined us at the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts when we sponsored a live taping of From the Top. They said watching the young musicians reminded them how beautiful the music is and how they would hate to see the art of Classical music lost.
Tom and Ginny had the pleasure of travelling with our former Classical Music Director Cheryl Dring and Food Reporter Elaine Corn to Italy on a food and wine adventure hosted by Capital Public Radio. They say that this was a "once in a lifetime" experience that combined wonderful food, wine, and music every day with a rich cultural experience. For the Cahill’s, the trip to Italy with Capital Public Radio was one of their most memorable experiences that has stayed with them throughout the years. When asked what motivates Tom and Ginny to support Capital Public Radio, their response was, "We hope that young people will hear the music and be inspired, as we were and still are."
Through their support, The Cahill’s are helping to grow a community of listeners who appreciate the beauty of both Classical and Jazz music. When Tom and Ginny are not listening to Capital Public Radio, they can be found playing CD’s, reading, writing (including Tom’s published science fiction novels), spending time with their family, and watching Downton Abbey and nature shows on KVIE.