This spring the Salem High School Alumni Association is giving $264,875 in scholarships to recent graduates and alumni.
The association awarded $241,875 in scholarships to 48 members of the Class of 2013 and 11 alumni at its banquet on May 25. In late June the association will award an additional $23,000 in Memorial Book Scholarships to 23 alumni enrolled in higher education programs.
Treasurer Daniel T. Moore reported that the alumni association's investment portfolio reached $8.5 million in May. The association had a 12.3 percent gain on its investments during 2012 and received $145,045 in contributions.
The size of the investment portfolio is indicative of "the strength, character and gratitude of all Salem High School alumni," Moore said.
On an annual income basis, SHSAA is first among Ohio high school alumni associations and ranks fourteenth among the 372 Ohio alumni organizations on the Internal Revenue Service's list that includes alumni groups for colleges, universities, and high schools.
"Our association has excelled through the years thanks to our very generous donors, large and small. Every dollar matters," said President Matt Yerkey.
Yerkey introduced U.S. Navy Captain Tim Harrington, this year's honored alumnus, as a fellow student from Southeast Elementary School. Yerkey recalled that he last saw Harrington 22 years ago in Turkey when he was in the Navy. Yerkey was getting off a cargo plane that happened to be carrying the multi-million dollar payroll that Harrington was picking up with armed Marines for the sailors on the USS Forrestal, an aircraft carrier.
Harrington, a 1984 SHS graduate, currently serves as Deputy Chief of Logistics, Fleet Supply and Ordnance for the Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
He was chosen for the award for his dedication and service to the nation. Since earning his commission in 1989 at the U.S. Navy Officer Candidate School in Newport, Rhode Island, Harrington has served aboard the USS Forrestal, USS Reid during Operation Desert Storm; the USS Abraham Lincoln, USS Kitty Hawk, and USS George Washington.
For two years in the mid-1990s, Harrington served on the personal staff of U.S. Army General John Shalikashvili when he was chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Harrington was stationed in Iceland and Japan for other shore duty tours.
Harrington's academic credentials include a bachelor's degree from Youngstown State University, a master's degree in business administration from the University of Georgia, and completion of the Advanced Management Program at Duke University's Fuqua School of Business.
During his speech at the banquet, Harrington talked about "crucible moments." He defined these as life events that initially cause discomfort, but that upon reflection provide opportunities for self-improvement.
The crucible moments he recounted ranged from managing sports challenges to supervising sailors, taking on the responsibilities of parenthood, and dealing with the deaths of relatives and friends.
He urged the graduating seniors to look for the lessons in their crucible moments. "You have the opportunity to live through them, work through them, reflect on them, learn from them, and hopefully make yourself better from them," he said.
Aggie Kamasky Tullis announced the Class of 1943's gift of $2,850 to the Floyd and Cora May Reich Stone Vocational Scholarship.
The Class of 1953 donated $9,200 to the association and asked that $1,000 go toward the Nancy Hickey Memorial Healthcare Scholarship. Paul Harrington, father of Tim Harrington, presented the class gift.
Fred Fenske and Joe Null led the fundraising effort of the 50th reunion of the Class of 1963. Fenske presented $8,358 as the class gift.
William Erskine, president of the graduating class, thanked the association on behalf of his classmates as he announced their $500 contribution. "It's really great what you do for us," he said.
Military Service Webpage
At the banquet Dr. Peter Apicella announced the addition of a military webpage on the alumni association's website.
"The military webpage honors the service and commitment that SHS alumni have made to our country," said Apicella, the alumni association board member who redesigned the association's website this year.
The new military webpage allows for searches by service branch, role, service dates, education, training, assignments, as well as awards and decorations. "This will allow our alumni to link with members in a related service, location, or time-frame," Apicella explained.
"Anyone can register information including for a family member. This will be a nice place to note the accomplishments of our alumni and leave a memory of a loved one," he said.
The Salem High School Alumni Association's tradition of meeting annually began in 1882 with 33 alumni. In 1903 the association formed the first high school alumni scholarship fund in Ohio. Within a few years the association had enough money to purchase a $1,000 bond. Interest from this bond was the source of the association's first scholarship for $60 in 1908.
Many large and small donations over the years have made it possible for the association to give scholarships to more than 2,200 individuals and amass an $8.5 million investment portfolio. Interest from the portfolio funds the association's scholarships.
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