Cap and Gown Leader Award Recipients 2020-21

On the evening of  On Thursday,  Nov. 18, 2021, we hosted the Cap and Gown Leader Award Ceremony over Zoom in which recipients, families, students, and alumnae were able to join us.  The Cap and Gown Leader Award honors demonstrated leadership, academic achievement, and commitment and contribution to Stanford and the community at large. We are extremely proud to introduce to you our eight 2020-21 Leader Award recipients below, which were inducted into Cap and Gown as lifetime members:


Julia Simon

Julia Simon is a senior at Stanford originally from New Orleans, Louisiana. Julia is passionate about sustainability and water conservation and treatment to create a cleaner and more equitable future. On campus, she has served as the Co-Director of Students for a Sustainable Stanford, and she has been heavily involved in the Society of Black Scientists and Engineers on campus, who she now serves in addition to the entirety of the Western region of the National Society of Black Engineers as the Region VI Programs Chair. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, golfing, and writing. 





Meg Richey
Meg Richey is the Co-President of Cap and Gown and a former Mentorship Chair, as well as Intern for Cap and Gown. She is a Cameron Impact Scholar majoring in Symbolic Systems with a concentration in Artificial Intelligence and a minor in Econ. She has previously worked for the Department of Defense and Booz Allen Hamilton and has received two provisional patents for her work in wearable technology and women’s safety.






Megha Parwani

Megha Parwani is a rising senior interested in political engagement and civic empowerment, both on campus and in the broader community. In this regard, she has spearheaded several national and campus-wide deliberative democracy events, and worked as a research assistant for the Stanford Center for Deliberative Democracy. Alongside this, she has served as the Director of Political Engagement in the ASSU and completed several internships focused on civil dialogue, civic education, and depolarization. Having grown up in three countries, she is also passionate about international public service and founded the South Asian Winter Camp (SAWC), a two week academic and mentorship program for teenagers in five countries. In addition, she is involved in several cultural and ethnic groups. She is studying philosophy and political science, and writing an interdisciplinary honors thesis in the Ethics in Society program.


Mia Bahr

Mia Bahr is a senior at Stanford University currently working at Accenture. Mia is dedicated to education equity and mitigating sexual violence on college campuses. Throughout her time at Stanford, she has been involved with Cap and Gown and other organizations that create community for women and POC. After graduation, she plans to move to New York to work before applying for her Masters in Public Health and JD.






Minha Khan

Minha Khan is a student of Sociology and Education at Stanford University. Her areas of interest surround educational inequities – both inside and outside the classroom. In her free time, she can be found drinking tea, trying to figure out how the world works, or most importantly, having conversations.






Rachel Portillo

Rachel is currently pursuing her coterminal masters in environmental communications at Stanford. She is originally from Truth or Consequences, New Mexico. At Stanford she has led many Environmental education programs for youth in the Bay Area like GeoKids and the High School Support Initiative. She has also served as an integral part of the Leland Scholars Program for FLI Students and the Stanford Summer Engineering Academy, both being summer bridge programs for incoming frosh from disadvantaged backgrounds. Additionally, the Leland Stanford Junior University Marching Band had her playing the drums and blowing off steam for most of her Stanford Career. 





Jess De Suza

Jess De Suza was the Actives Co-President of Cap and Gown for the past two years. Outside of Cap and Gown, she has been an avid campus tour guide since freshman year, a member of the board of Stanford Women in Finance and one of the head TA’s of the Frosh 101 curriculum. Outside of school, you can find her spending time outdoors, trying out different cuisines, and occasionally jumping (safely) out of planes!






Margot Bellon

Margot Bellon is a graduated senior at Stanford University who majored in Biology and minored in Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. From San MAteo, California, she is a French dual citizen with a passion for examining cross-cultural differences in healthcare. At Stanford, she has been involved with volunteer work at a local Palo Alto women’s shelter called the Heart and Home Collaborative, and at the Stanford Emergency Department, where she directly witnessed social inequity driving poor health access in the Bay Area. She is also involved with various nonprofits, from co-leading Bridging Tech to help bridge the digital divide for students affected by homelessness in the United States, to volunteering her time with Planned Parenthood Generation Action. After graduation, she is pursuing a Master’s in Epidemiology at Stanford with a depth in Infectious Disease and has aspirations of becoming a physician in order to directly address disparities in women’s health. In her spare time, Margot enjoys long distance running and engaging in all things outdoors!