Wall of Fame

Over the past 100 years, many professionals have influenced GUHSD lives through teaching, mentoring, counseling, and coaching. Many have never been selected for awards and most would never expect to be. There is no question that these unsung heroes have had major influences in the lives of students and colleagues. Now is your chance to honor these people through our Centennial Virtual Wall of Fame.

Robert Sterrett

Robert Sterrett
Greenway High School
Before Greenway High school first opened in 1973, Robert James Sterrett was selected as Greenway’s first principal. The Greenway culture of providing a quality education for the students as well as a commitment to the community that is evident today was instilled by its first principal, Mr. Bob Sterrett.

Mr. Sterrett began his career with the Glendale Union High School District in 1964 as a counselor at Sunnyslope High School. He then became the Assistant Principal of Student Services at Washington High School from 1970 through 1972. Mr. Sterrett was the Principal at Greenway from 1973 through 1986. In 1986 he was promoted to the District Administrator of Facilities, a position he held until 1989. He finished his career with GUHSD in 1998 as the District Administrator of Physical Education and Athletics.

In addition to his service to GUHSD, Mr. Sterrett also served as the 3A Skyline Athletic Region Chairman from 1989 through 1995, and as the 4A Conference Desert Sky Region Chairman from 1995 through 1998. In 1996 Mr. Sterrett was awarded the 25 Year Service Award, and in 1997 he received the 4A Conference Retiring Administrator Award. In 1999 Mr. Sterrett was inducted into the Arizona Interscholastic Administrators’ Hall of Fame.

Mr. Bob Sterrett dedicated his professional career to the students, staff and administration of the Glendale Union High School District. Although his presence has been felt throughout the district and the state, the most appreciated and long felt impact was made to the Greenway High School community. Long after his departure from Greenway, commitment to excellence is Mr. Sterrett’s true legacy.

- Submitted by Michael Dellisanti, present Greenway principal

 Carl Riney

Carl Riney
Thunderbird High School
Carl Riney has been on Thunderbird’s campus for 38 years. To put 38 years in perspective, Carl was among the first stable of coaches at Thunderbird High School and while many of his contemporaries have retired, Carl presses forward, training a new generation of coaches and students. He is a bridge spanning multiple generations of Thunderbird.

But Carl is not noteworthy solely for his longevity, but for the quality of his service as well. In track circles, he is universally respected as an unparalleled sprint coach, a mysterious and secretive jedi master. Few coaches can claim as many region championships or individual state champions as Carl can. Carl can claim (but is too humble to do so himself) a record of sustained excellence over time.

And as he nears his FIFTH DECADE of coaching at Thunderbird High School, he shows no signs of slowing down. While he has coached multiple sports at Thunderbird High School throughout his career, for the past 5 years, he has coached 4 sports each year. He goes from serving as the Cross-Country coach in the fall, to boys JV basketball in the winter, to head track coach of both girls’ and boys’ teams in the spring. However, every night after he finishes Cross-Country practice, he comes over to the football field to work as the conditioning coordinator for the football team. At those junctions when sports seasons overlap, he schedules practices so he can attend both. Others may claim to have coached year-round, but most can only do so for a short time; Carl does it year after year after year.

Though comically skeptical in other areas of life he remains the eternal optimist with every kid he encounters. He sees the best in each kid, and pushes and prods every kid to get the best out of them. Make no mistake – if you are THAT kid, he is annoying (every successful athlete that Carl has coached will tell you of a time Carl annoyed him while coaxing more from him) - but if you are that kid, he absolutely will NEVER give up on you. I have seen him save kids that EVERYONE else -teachers, coaches, and even family- had given up on, but not Carl. He has not saved every kid – the odds don’t allow for that – but he HAS saved kids after everyone else, including the kid, had given up on.

If teachers are to build monuments to others, it should be for these selfless acts – he sees the best in kids and finds a way to bring it out of them, even when no one else can see what he sees.

He has served tirelessly and selflessly every class that has ever walked the halls of Thunderbird High School and there is no one more synonymous with a facility at THS than Carl Riney is with its track, for there has never been an athlete on the Thunderbird track that has not been touched by Carl Riney.

- Submitted by Thunderbird High School staff

Victor Lowman

Victor Lowman
Moon Valley High School

Mr. Victor Lowman served as the first principal of Moon Valley High School. His legacy at Moon Valley runs deep and he is remembered for a number of reasons. Not only did he open the school, he brought Moon Valley to greatness quickly. Both academic and athletic success came quickly as large numbers of graduates went on to higher education. He established a legacy of excellence that has carried on ever since. Thank you Mr. Lowman for your service and legacy you left at Moon Valley.

- Submitted by Moon Valley staff

Bruce Heatwole

Bruce Heatwole
Glendale High School

The Heatwole family has very strong ties to the history of Glendale High School. Mr. Harry Renick taught here from 1921-1946 and served as mayor of Glendale from 1936-46. His daughter, Thelma, graduated in 1927 and married her high school sweetheart, Don Heatwole, also a graduate of 1927. Thelma was active on the newspaper staff and became a columnist for the Phoenix Gazette. Don became the first Fire Chief for the city of Glendale and remained active in the community all of his life. They had two children who both graduated from Glendale. One son, Bruce Heatwole, class of 1955, followed in his grandfather's steps by teaching business classes at Glendale beginning in 1959. He served in administration at Glendale from 1969-1977 and returned to teaching at Glendale before retiring in 1990. He continues to teach accounting classes at Glendale Community College.

- Submitted by Deborah Jordan, present Glendale principal
Tom Pagel

Tom Pagel
Pagel Family
Washington High School

No family in the history of Washington is as well renowned as the Pagel family. Thomas Pagel taught science at Washington from 1961-1987 and served as assistant varsity football coach, head varsity baseball coach, and assistant varsity baseball coach where in 1986 the Rams won a state championship with head coach Nick Candrea. Tom's wife, Rose, who passed away this spring, was as much a part of the Washington culture as Tom. They sent five boys, Bruce, Karl, Mike, Ross, and Rick, through Washington High School, and all five boys were extremely active at Washington. For fifteen years, Rose could be found in the stands making quilts and supporting her family as well as the community. In fact, Washington was important enough to the family that when she passed, they created a memorial fund to be donated to Washington High School athletics. The Pagel family, with Tom as its head, truly represents the culture and values of Washington High School: community service, participation and academic excellence.

- Submitted by Brian Fitzgerald, present WHS Assistant Principal of Operations and Resources
Sharon Austerman

Sharon Austerman
Cortez High School

Sharon Austerman spent 31 years of her professional career on the Cortez High School campus - teaching, coaching, supporting students, and being an advocate for athletics. As a co-sponsor of the Girls’ Athletic Association, she was instrumental in the transition of girls’ sports from a club type forum to the varsity competitive sports status of today. She started and coached the first girls’ varsity teams of volleyball, basketball and track at Cortez; in addition, she coached the pom line and co-sponsored the C.H.S. Letter Girls. Her dedication to athletics is evidenced in the awards and accolades she received over the course of her career, totaling 27 teaching and coaching awards on local, state and national levels. Sharon was a 7 time regional Coach of the Year, won the Gatorade National Coaches Who Care Award, the Southwest District Coach of the Year, and the Arizona Republic All Arizona Girls’ Coach of the Year. After completing her career at Cortez, she was inducted into the Arizona Coaches’ Hall of Fame in May of 1999 and the Cortez High School Coaches’ Hall of Fame in February of 2000; Ms. Austerman still continues to support athletics. Sharon is a true Cortesian!

- Submitted by Cortez High School staff

Hal Anders

Hal Anders
NJROTC Instructor
Apollo High School

Hal Anders was the Apollo High School NJROTC instructor for 17 years. During that time, Master Chief Anders had an amazing impact on the students, staff, and parents of the Apollo community. One of his most valued accomplishments at Apollo was establishing Hawktown, a program designed to promote an understanding of diversity. Not only has his work with Hawktown (an Anytown camp) made a difference at Apollo, but he is known throughout the state of Arizona for his work with the Anytown program. In addition to his work with Hawktown, Hal also chaired the Apollo site council for many years. His site council leadership provided a positive direction for the school.

Probably his greatest influence was on the people with whom he interacted at school, at church, or in the community. A very positive role model, Master Chief Anders developed the NJROTC program into one of the most popular elective classes at Apollo. Under his leadership, the cadets performed innumerable hours of community service and learned valuable skills for life after high school. Not only was Hal an inspiration for his students, but he also impacted the lives of the Apollo staff. Administrators and fellow teachers frequently sought him out for advice, and his wisdom was valued throughout the school. A deeply spiritual man, Hal initiated men’s study groups and, after retiring, he volunteered at the Veterans’ Hospital.

Hal Anders was the epitome of wisdom, compassion, and selflessness. His encouragement and kindness will leave a lasting impression on all who knew him.

- Submitted by Sue Maland, present Apollo High School principal

Dan Mannix

Dan Mannix
Sunnyslope High School
When you say “basketball” around anyone from Sunnyslope High School, the next two words you will hear are “Dan Mannix.” That’s because, for 33 years, Mannix was Slope’s head basketball coach and dedicated himself to developing players’ athletic skills far beyond their own expectations.

His teams include 2 State Championships, 2 State Runner-ups and over 15 Regional Championship team with over 300 total wins. He coached seven first-team All-State players, one Arizona Player of the Year, and was chosen as the AZ Republic Big Schools Coach of the year in 2002. In May of 2010, Mannix stepped down as head coach, but his service will continue as he takes on the role of assistant to the new head coach.

As a young boy growing up in Brooklyn, Dan loved baseball and watched some of the greatest players of all times at Ebbetts Field before his beloved Dodgers moved to Los Angeles. He had no idea, then, that someday his love would be basketball.

Dan, however, is much more that a basketball coach for Sunnyslope. For 24 years, he served as P.E. department chair and helped mentor and mold new teachers into one of the finest P.E. departments in the GUHSD.

His own experiences taught him that coaching goes far beyond the gym or court, and, just like the coaches who helped guide young Mannix in Brooklyn, he wanted to help others. Dan has been tremendously successful at achieving that goal; his legacy reaches well beyond the boundaries of our campus or recent decades -- evident by the number of former students who return to rekindle friendships and express gratitude and respect for his contribution to their lives. In fact, several former students are now teachers and coaches at Slope.

We will forever be indebted to Coach Mannix and the positive influence he has had on all those around him. We thank his wife, Geri, his four children and six grandchildren for sharing him with us for so many wonderful years.

All of this, yet Dan is the most humble, quiet, “don’t shine the light on me” kind of guy. He simply loves teaching, coaching and kids.

- Submitted by Linda Whitehead, present Sunnyslope High School principal

Michelle Condor

Michelle Condor
Dance Teacher
Thunderbird High School

Michelle Condor not only has a passion for dance, but a passion for her students' progression in the arts. She supports all of her dancers and gives 110% of her energy every day. I've never seen her in a bad mood, and she always knows how to inspire her students.

- Submitted by Alissa Sabatino, Thunderbird High School student
Nate Dettmar

Nate Dettmar
English Teacher
Washington High School

Mr. Dettmar is an influential teacher on my campus. He encourages students to be who they want to be. He also is a very straight foward person and is not afraid to tell the truth. He delivers his lessons in such an interesting way that allows students to understand them. Another great thing about Mr. Dettmar is that he knows how to connect with his students on a personal level which allows them to become more comfortable with him. In his classroom, students are actually excited to learn. The fact that Mr. Dettmar tells his students about his life shows that he trust us and that we are more than just students to him. "Dizzy D" is an amazing teacher and definitely deserves recognition.

- Submitted by Caylan Moore, Washington High School student 
Mark Pena

Mark Pena
History Teacher
Independence High School
Mr. Pena is an absolutely wonderful teacher and is very much respected at our school. He is such a funny teacher and makes his classes a fun environment to learn in. Every student learns something interesting in his classes. He is very caring for his students. Over all, he is fun, awesome, and funny.

- Submitted by Judith Ornelas, Independence High School student 
Mike Childress

Mike Childress
Sunnyslope High School
"It's a great day for wrestling!" These are the words that many athletes have heard throughout the years that Coach Childress has coached at Sunnyslope High School. Mike Childress is a very influential person around Sunnyslope's campus, but what makes him so amazing is that work and dedication he has put into his work and into his athletes. Mr. Childress has been deeply imbedded at many schools throughout the district. He has worked for the Glendale Union High School District for over 19 years and plans to continue to do so. In the district, he worked as a Geometry teacher for a total of seven years! He worked at Greenway High School for seven years and was the varsity wrestling coach ending his record with 120 wins and 14 losses. At Greenway, Mr. Childress was also an assistant JV football coach for six out of the seven years there. Mr. Childress did not only make an impact at Greenway, but also helped at Apollo High School for two years. After those two years, Mr. Childress finally made it to Sunnyslope High School. Here at Sunnyslope, Mr. Childress has helped so many students make the right decisions in life by helping them choose a college, write a letter of recommendation, or just simply make the right choices. He has not only left a lasting impression as a guidance counselor, but also a two-sport coach. Mr. Childress was an assistant freshman football coach for 8 years, but recently got moved up to teach JV football and has been doing it for the past year. He has also been a wrestling coach at Sunnyslope for 10 years and has had a total record of 150 wins and 27 losses. Undoubtedly, this man has not only impacted me on a personal level, but the entire school as a whole. Mike Childress should never be forgotten in the Glendale Union High School District for the passion that he puts in job everyday at school, but also into his athletes on the field. Without a doubt, he is a remarkable person who goes unnoticed in the Sunnyslope community, but we all, as rightful human beings, owe this man much much admiration.

- Submitted by Erik De Leon, Sunnyslope High School student

Roger Scott

Roger Scott
Glendale High School

- Submitted by Sarah Smith, Glendale High School student 
Robert Scott

Robert C. Scott
Glendale High School

Robert C. Scott was a teacher, coach, counselor, and administrator at Glendale High School from 1937 to 1960 (prior to joining the staff at Glendale, he was a teacher and coach for two years at Peoria High School after moving to Glendale from Indiana). He taught English, Spanish, Geography, History, and Civics. He coached JV basketball and tennis in his early years at Glendale. For years, he ran the scoreboard and game clock at home football and basketball games. He was the first driver's education teacher in the Glendale Union High School District. He was a counselor for Junior and Senior students and because Vice Principal in 1952. He was promoted to Principal of Glendale High in 1954 and served as such until 1960 when he stepped down due to health reasons. It was not uncommon to see Mr. Scott leading cheers on the stage during a pep rally! One year, Mr. Scott enrolled Manuel Labor into classes as a joke on teachers and counselors. The only proof of his existence were grainy photos of the back of Manuel Labor as he walked away from class down one of the walkways of Old Main. He was a well-liked principal and knew most students by name. Mr. Scott finished his career with the Glendale Union High School District as head counselor at Cortez High School from 1961 until his retirement in 1970. During those finals years, he made an unforgettable trip to England and Scotland, the land of his heritage.

- Submitted by R. Bruce Scott, son and Glendale High School Class of 1956
Bob Crouch

Robert "Bob" Crouch
Glendale High School
Bob arrived at Glendale High in 1930 to commence his life career. His new career at Glendale High included coaching varsity football, basketball and baseball, teaching history and physical education. "Coach" as he was universally called  actually lived with his new family-- on campus-- in one of the three "School cottages," and during those depression days shared many meals with members of his teams. Those coaching days were measured by more than winning teams like the undefeated 1936 football team. An unusual  number of his team members went on to become noted college athletes, as well as successful coaches in their own right.

While Glendale's sports and physical education became Bob Crouch's primary career focus, that certainly was not his only accomplishment. World War II interrupted all American's lives and Bob volunteered for the service in the US Navy in 1942 training Navy aviators. Upon release from The Navy, he was back at Glendale High, and with the rapid post war growth and new schools, was chosen to be Glendale Union High District's first Director of Athletics.

During his tenure, Bob earned many community and professional accolades. These included being elected to the Arizona Interscholastic Administrator's Association "Hall of Fame" and being chosen as one of eight athletes to comprise the charter group of the "Arizona Football Hall of Fame."

Nothing, however, surpassed the celebration of his 40 year service on May 23, 1970 at the Glendale Memorial Stadium, the very site of the beginning of his family (the football stadium was built on the exact location where the three "school cottages" stood). With his wife Louise, whom he married in 1932, son Bob, daughter Judy and son-in-law Nelson Butler-- all GUHSD graduates-- proudly present, he received a special "thank you" from a grassroots group of former athletic team members, students, friends, and Glendale residents.

- Submitted by L. Nelson Butler, son-in-law and 1959 Glendale High School graduate
                   James Richard Forsman
                                 Apollo, Glendale,
                     Sunnyslope, and Thunderbird

James Richard Forsman began his 48-year teaching career in 1964.  His first year was at San Fernando High School in Los Angeles.  The rest of his years were spent in the Phoenix area.  He taught at Glendale High School, Thunderbird High School, Apollo High School, and Sunnyslope High school.  In addition, he was the Science and Mathematics Curriculum Coordinator for the Glendale Union High School District.  His love of teaching was so great that he was also an Adjunct Professor of Physics at Phoenix College from 1990 to 1992 and then at Paradise Valley Community College from 1993 through 2012.  He taught the whole spectrum of math and science classes, with his specialty in physics.

In 1990, Jim got the opportunity of a lifetime.  He applied for and was offered a job to work at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) during the summer months as part of Fermilab’s summer program for high school teachers.  Fermilab is a United States Department of Energy national laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics, and it is located 40 miles west of Chicago. Fermilab’s vision is to “solve the mysteries of matter, energy, space, and time for the benefit of all.”  He thrived in that environment, and he proved himself invaluable and was re-hired 10 years in a row. He helped in the construction, commissioning, and run mode of three different fixed-target experiments.  He specifically focused on the design and construction of electronic circuits, the design and construction of various structural and mechanical detectors, the design and construction of a proof-of-concept triggering device, and software programming.

Jim often went out of his way to mentor young teachers just starting out in their careers.  He always provided whatever support he could to help them advance in their professional careers to enhance the learning process for their students.  As one of Jim’s protégés recently shared, “What I learned from him was to foster curiosity in all things within my classroom.  Jim taught me to use a Socratic approach where students were guided on their own path of discovery and understanding.  That approach was something I worked at to improve myself, as well as the learning of others.  Curiosity was a key to joy and finding beauty in this world.  His mentorship has improved my ability to help others learn while continually growing myself.” 

Under Jim’s tutelage, one could not help but become curious about the world and share that passion with students.  Jim always maintained that even though we, the teachers, are the teachers, that does not mean that we stop learning.  We learn with our students, and we learn new ways to be more effective in helping our students along their educational path.  He never stopped learning and always worked at ways to expand his professional growth.

Even in retirement, Jim remained active.  Whether involved with his local ham radio club (his call sign was K7BIE), constructing and installing his 80-meter band ham radio antenna, producing stunning photographic work, or general construction projects, he did it all with joie de vivre.  He never stopped learning and doing!

Jim passed away on Saturday, February 20, 2021, but his spirit lives on, especially through the thousands of students and teachers he influenced and mentored.  It is because of people like Jim that the love of learning passes on from one generation to the next.

- Submitted by Casey Durandet, friend and Fermilab and PVCC colleague