2019 Award of Excellence

2019 Award of Excellence
August 23, 2019 sphsalumni

Frances Guiles graduated from Southern in 1970. Fran obtained a bachelor’s degree from Gweynnd Mercy College in Health Information Management and is currently the Manager of Oncology Data Services at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. Fran has served on the SPHS Executive Committee for over 10 years and is currently the Assistant Treasurer and Editor of the Newsletter. Ms. Guiles has been involved in her professional organizations servicing as President of the Pennsylvania Health Information Management Association and Pennsylvania Association of Cancer Registrars.

Harry Gilbert taught math at Southern from 1973 until 1990. Harry became an Honorary member of our alumni association while teaching at Southern even though he was an alumnus of Edison High School. He was the sponsor of a math team from Southern that won the PSFS quiz contest for 2 years. This had never happened before or after his leadership. After he left Southern, he taught at Northeast High School. While there he was nominated for Who’s Who Among American High School Teachers and won the award 3 times. In 2013, partly because he was inspired by our organization and members such as Bill Esher and Gene Alessendrini, he started an alumni organization at his alma mater Edison High School and has been president of the association since then.

Yvette Palmer is a former SPHS teacher who taught math from 1986 until 2008. Yvette was active in various programs in the school and served as the Team Leader for the 9th grade Academy. A program was created, CASA, of which Ms. Palmer helped abused children and even spoke on their behalf in court cases. She continues to run a Soup Kitchen which she started over 25 years ago. Ms. Palmer is very active in her church and serves as a Eucharistic Minister.

Mark Rago owns and operates Monti Rago Funeral Home with Sam Monti. Mark is a Board Member of the 1492 Society, which conducts and organizes the Christopher Columbus Day Parade. He is the past- president of Filitalia International for South Philadelphia. He is currently serving as the president of the Funeral Directors Association. This past Christmas he hosted a toy drive that enabled Childrens’ Hospital of Philadelphia to receive 6 truckloads of toys for their patients. Monti Rago hosted a fund raiser at Pizzeria Pesto for the new Mario Lanza Museum. He is constantly giving of his time and energy to cultural and charitable activities in our South Philadelphia Community.