Alumni Association’s plans and goals

By Ray Fox
Alumni Association Vice President

As we begin 2023, I felt it was important to share a little of the history of the Alumni Association including our plans and goals for the future.

It is important to note that every Quakertown Community High School graduate is automatically considered to be part of the QCHS Alumni Association. The current Board of Directors includes President Melea Barto Rupert (’73), Vice President Ray Fox (’66), Secretary Denise Loux Fox (’80), Treasurer Lori Horne Kertesz (’79) and Larry Benner (’65), Evelyn Roth Gerhart (’68), Peter Jarrett (’71), Greta Hilker Krause (’89), Shannon Smith Miller (’92), Chris Betz (’90), and Jane Price (’75).

The Alumni Association has a history that goes back to the 1940’s when it was a very active organization. Unfortunately, it disbanded in the 1990’s. In 2008, Dr. Robert Leight (’50) sent out a communique asking if any alumni would be interested in a meeting to discuss reactivating the Alumni Association. That meeting was held at the James Michener branch of the Quakertown library where about 30 people attended and all were in favor of reactivating the Alumni Association. After that meeting, a set of by-laws were written and a board of directors was installed. Three of our current board members have been serving since that reactivation meeting.

In June of 2009, we held the first annual Alumni Meeting and Awards Ceremony of the Reactivated Alumni Association and established our primary goal of raising money to award scholarships to graduating seniors, to continue the tradition of awarding an Honorary Diploma each year, and to honor outstanding graduates with the Gold Key Award. The Alumni Association’s last Gold Key Award was given in 2015. After that, the school district established and oversees the Wall of Fame awards. Nomination forms for this award can be found on the School District website. The Alumni Association has one representative on the five-member Wall of Fame Selection Committee, which also includes school district staff and community members. Both our Alumni Association and the Quakertown Education Foundation share the costs of providing the Wall of Fame Award plaques. The annual Alumni Association Meeting is held at the high school on the first Saturday of June each year. Nominations for Board members and officers are open at that meeting.

Since June 2009, the Alumni Association has awarded 14 Honorary Diplomas. Since 2010, we have awarded 44 Scholarships totaling $44,000. The high school guidance office helps by advertising the scholarships each year. Members of the Senior Class are eligible to apply for these scholarships. Their written application is reviewed and then every applicant is interviewed by members of the Alumni Association for consideration. The scholarships include both full-time QCHS students as well as Quakertown students who attend the Upper Buck County Technical School. Awards are given in June of each year. The Association makes a sincere effort to give as many scholarships as possible.

Scholarship funding has been generously donated by individual alumni, existing class treasuries, faculty, and retirees. Additional funds have been received from donations in memory of deceased alumni and faculty, and from fundraisers such as the sale of apple dumplings and our highly successful designer bag bingo events. This year, the bingo fundraiser is scheduled for Sunday, March 26 at Benner Hall in Richlandtown. Tickets can be purchased in advance or at the door if available beginning in late January by contacting [email protected].

For several years now, the Association has been a visible presence at both the Arts Alive and Autumn Alive Street festivals in downtown Quakertown. We believe this is an important way to interact with the community and alumni and to get the word out about our organization.

The Alumni Association encourages alumni to participate in the Association's activities. Its mission includes fundraising to provide scholarship opportunities each year for graduating seniors. Please check out our Facebook Pages “Quakertown High School Alumni Association” and the Alumni pages of the website for more information. We are a 501C3 organization and always welcome any contributions toward our scholarship endeavors. If you are interested in donating, please email [email protected] and you will receive instructions on how to do so. Comments and ideas for future articles can be sent to Ray Fox at [email protected].

The Alumni board is a group of dedicated people who strive to support the students and alumni as much as we can. You could say that we “bleed blue” but more importantly that we embody two commonly known Quakertown mottos:

“Enter to Learn; Leave to Serve”
“Once a Panther, Always a Panther”!

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