The Alumni Awards Puts a Bow on Homecoming & Reunion

The Annual Alumni Awards Reception capped off a day of festivities before Homecoming & Reunion class parties. Former Spanish teacher Señor Luis Gomez was honored with the Distinguished Faculty Award.

While Dr. Norm Schaffler could not make it to introduce Luis as the recipient, his stand-in and fellow former NA Faculty Joe Ball used Norm’s own words from the speech Norm planned to deliver to describe Luis, saying he, “was, as you might expect, an immediate hit with the students.  From the get-go, his lessons were a combination of language and culture.  In the beginning, Luis’ classroom had an adjacent kitchen, so part of the culture was Luis’ cooking Puerto Rican dishes with his students, making Newark Academy probably the only school in New Jersey where Middle Schoolers gained the ‘freshman fifteen’ usually reserved for university students.  His students were always engaged, his classes always lively.”
 
And his work ethic was unmatched. As Norm later wrote, “in addition to his teaching duties, Luis has, over the years, been an academic advisor, grade counselor, leader of Capstone experiences, advisor to the Middle School Council, and director of the Middle School play. He has helped with hair and make-up for the Spring Musical and chaperoned the immersion trip to Spain.  And if all this weren’t enough, he gave up many Spring Breaks to organize trips to Puerto Rico, Mexico, and Costa Rica so that his students could experience those cultures first-hand.  I still don’t know whether to admire his commitment or doubt his sanity about doing this.”
 
Below is the list of Awards and Winners:
 
Alumni Achievement Award: Denise J. Jamieson '83, M.D., M.P.H.
 
The Newark Academy Alumni Association Achievement Award is presented to those graduates who have distinguished themselves in their field of endeavor, whether in public life, the professions, the arts, education, nonprofit organizations, or in the business world.
Denise is a champion of women’s health, making contributions in ectopic pregnancy, preeclampsia, postpartum depression, emerging infectious diseases, contraception and much more. Her work has improved pregnancy-related morbidity and mortality worldwide.
 
Fulton H. MacArthur Award: Samuel W. Croll III '68, J.D., M.A.R.
 
The Newark Academy Alumni Association Fulton H. MacArthur Award is presented to those graduates who have distinguished themselves through loyal and dedicated service to Newark Academy through their efforts on behalf of the Alumni Association, the Board of Trustees, or in another volunteer capacity.
Since taking over as Chair of Trusteeship, Samuel has guided NA’s Board toward a more streamlined Trustee selection process, annual qualitative and quantitative assessments of Board effectiveness, a completely re-designed new Trustee orientation process; and a renewed commitment to re-engaging with former Trustees as a way to ensure long-term leadership stability. He is also a member of the Board’s Crisis Communication and Management team and chairs the Headship Committee.
 
Artistic Achievement Award: Thomas Bradshaw '98, M.F.A.
 
The Newark Academy Artistic Achievement Award is presented to alumni who are creative, literary, performing and visual artists who began their careers with significant contributions to the arts while at Newark Academy and excelled in the arts following graduation.
 
Thomas is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, the PEN Literary Award, the Prince Prize, a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Award, and a Doris Duke Implementation Grant. Coming to Newark Academy as a freshman Thomas contributed significantly to several NA theatrical productions during his four years, including:  Marvin's Room, To Kill a Mockingbird, and Look Homeward Angel. 
 
Athletic Hall of Fame Award: John Sternlicht '08
 
The Newark Academy Alumni Association Athletic Hall of Fame Award is presented to those Newark Academy alumni and coaches who have brought honor, merit, and recognition to Newark Academy through excellence in the field of athletics.
John excelled as a four-year letter winner and captain in wrestling, football and track and field at Newark Academy. He was a three-time District Champion, two-time County Champion and a four-time All-Conference wrestler. John was a First Team All-County and three-time All-Conference football player. He was a Prep State Champion and set the school record in Javelin in track and field. John went on to Muhlenberg College, where he was a four-year letter winner and captain in both wrestling and football. He is embarking on his first season as head coach of the Minutemen.
 
Distinguished Faculty Award: Luis Gomez
 
The Newark Academy Alumni Association Distinguished Faculty Award is presented to a faculty member in recognition of his or her significant impact upon the educational development of the students of Newark Academy.
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