Bertha Romaine first served Mt. Diablo High School as a mechanical drawing teacher from 1910 - 1917. She applied for the position of principal when Roger Phelps left the school. She got the job, and as principal, led the school through phenominal growth from 148 to 1500 students during her 31 year tenure.
She rallied the community around the cause of growth and improvement for the school, raising funds and adding new buildings. Building contractors were impressed by her ability to read and understand blueprints when few other school principals could.
Miss Romaine was a traditionalist, insisting on courtesy and proper conduct. She ran the school much like a private school, insisting on a dress code and a closed campus.
In 1936, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, H. H.. Ellworthy wrote about Miss Romaine in his column for The Diablo. This is what he had to say about her:
" I believe that Miss Romaine's selection as principal in 1917 was about the most important event in the progress of the school.... (She is) understanding of the hearts and minds of the students, sympathetic, staunchly loyal to the teachers, the students, and the idea of our school, unsparing of herself in her service to Diablo, the most able administrator, and friend to all of us. She has the love, the respect, and the admiration of the students, the teachers, and the community."
It was a sad day for Mt. Diablo when Miss Romaine retired in 1948.
In 1963 - 1964, several new buildings were constructed and one, the multi-purpose-cafeteria, was named Romaine Hall in honor of the esteemed principal.
"If we cannot expect good work from our leaders, of whom should we expect it?" 1927 Diablo Monday,October 9 - "I spoke feelingly today to a charming girl who thinks she must be more colorful. It is hard to draw the line when even old ladies are dolling up. I wonder what kind of rouge she uses." 1928 Diablo "...upon Diablo's field you will see a mighty contest fought by warriors clad in padded armor." 1929 Diablo "The ringmaster, who has a heart, and who has been a monkey, pony, cat, and elephant in other worlds, smiles understandingly,...." 1930 Diablo