Alumni Alert: June 2, 2013

Alumni Alert: June 2, 2013
June 3, 2013 sphsalumni

Please take note of the following information of interest to the SPHS Alumni Community:


Photos from the 2013 SPHS Alumni Hall of Fame Banquet are now posted on our website at A link and instructions on how to access to the photos taken by professional photographer and SPHS Alum, Mike Moffa (Class of 1964), is also posted on our website.

For those who missed the 2013 Hall of Fame Banquet, you missed a great event!! In addition to the awesome Inductees, the food was top notch as usual. The variety in the appetizer buffet was enough to fill you up. The appetizer buffet included, shrimp, barbeque spare ribs, lobster tails, crabmeat salad, pasta salad, fried shrimp, and lots of other choices (the photos of the spread will make you hungry!) All that, plus a sit down dinner plate for just $35!! Hope you don’t miss out next year!!

Congratulations again to the 2013 Inductees in the SPHS Alumni Halls of Fame. The 2013 Inductees are:

Athletic Hall of Fame:

Anthony DiPietro ‘58

Bill Rankin ‘62

Lou Sbarra ‘70

Dr. Anthony DiPrimio ‘51

Cultural Hall of Fame:

The Late Dr. Vincent A. Fulginiti ‘ 49 – Physician, Writer, Medical Administrator and Professor

Colonel George E. Hardy ‘ 42 – Tuskegee Airman and Engineer

Dr. Saul Jeck ‘49 – Physician and Professor



Remember that 2013 is the “5th year” and “10th year” anniversary for graduating classes ending in “3” and “8”. If your class ends in “3” or “8”, and you have not already begun to plan for your reunion, the time to start is NOW. Of course, classes are encouraged to have reunions as often as they wish.

The following Graduating Classes have information posted about Reunions on our website:

Class of 1978 – 35th Reunion – Saturday, June 22, 2013, 8pm

Boys’ and Girls Classes of June 1953 – 60th Reunion – Sunday, October 6, 2013, 1pm

Classes of 1996 to 2002 – Multi-year Reunion, Saturday, October 12, 2013, 7pm

Class of 1968 – 45th Reunion – Saturday, October 26, 2013, 7pm

Classes of January and June 1958 – 35th Reunion – Sunday, November 3, 2013, 12noon

Class of 1976 – 37th Reunion – Fall 2013 – Planning Underway

Class of June 1964 – 50th Reunion – June 15, 2014 – Planning Underway

Visit our website ( for details and contact information for these Reunions. PLEASE ADHERE TO THE DEADLINE DATES FOR PAYMENT IN THE REUNION ANNOUNCEMENTS. It is important that you make payment by the deadline date as many venues require as exact a count as possible, two weeks in advance of the event.

If you have a scheduled reunion which is not listed above, please let us know the details of your Class Reunion (include the coordinator’s contact information) by sending an email to [email protected]. We will post your Class Reunion on our website under the “Events and Reunions” link.

If your Class Reunion details are not posted within seven (7) days of your request (or the details posted require correction), please call the office at 215-468-3377 or email [email protected]. Thank you.



Help Southern in its Rooftop Garden Project!! Southern and the Lower Moyamensing Civic Association (LoMo) are embarking upon a project to create a rooftop garden. An article regarding the details about the project and how you can contribute can be found here:

Remember, personal and business donations are tax deductible. Please DONATE NOW and help our alma mater reach its goal! To make a donation to the SPHS Rooftop Project, go to:

Thank you for your support in advance.



Senior Awards Ceremony – Friday, June 14, 2013, 10am

Class of 2013 Commencement – Wednesday, June 19, 2013, 10am

Annual South Jersey Buffet Brunch – Sunday, September 22, 2013, 11am

Annual Award of Excellence Luncheon – Wednesday, November 13, 2013, 12noon

Details for these events are posted on our website under the “Events and Reunions” section.




Congratulations to Senior Phat Nguyen, winner of the prestigious Gates Millenium Scholarship Award. For those of you not familiar with the Gates Millenium Scholarship Award, it is an award provide by Microsoft Windows founder, Bill Gates.

The Gates Millenium Scholarship is awarded to only 1,000 students nationwide. The scholarship provides full payment of all college costs (tuition, room and board, books) and may be extended to cover the same costs through graduate school, medical school, law school, etc. For more information on the Gates Millenium Scholarship, go to:


“The Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS) Program selects 1,000 talented students each year to receive a good-through-graduation scholarship to use at any college or university of their choice. We provide Gates Millennium Scholars with personal and professional development through our leadership programs along with academic support throughout their college career.”

Mr. Nguyen is 1 of 11 recipients from Pennsylvania, and 1 of 9 recipients from the Philadelphia School District. Well done, Mr. Nguyen!!



Congratulations to Southern Teacher, Michele McKeone for winning an award for her instruction of students with autism. Ms. McKeone will receive a $10,000 endowment from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education and the Milken Family Foundation for her work with students through the use of digital media. She uses her prize-winning website, to connect with her students

For an article on Ms. McKeone’s award and her work with her students, see:


“In claiming the $10,000 endowment from the fourth annual University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education and Milken Family Foundation’s Education Business Plan Competition, the resident of the 1300 block of Tasker Street emerged as one of seven winners from a 250-entrant pool. Representing 17 countries, the hopefuls competed for $145,000, with the Passyunk Square dweller eager to tout her belief that society must strengthen autistic adolescents’ life skills instruction.

“I use digital media to circumvent the learning variations of those with autism,” McKeone, who earned her special education master’s degree from Chestnut Hill College, said as her eight pupils interacted and visited her brainchild’s website. “I’m all about preparing them for different opportunities and consider this instruction a new way to hit more rigorous goals and objectives.”

The ebullient educator readied her reaction to a dearth of resources through the University of the Arts, whose Corzo Center Creative Incubator/Wells Fargo Fellowship granted the alumnus $10,000 in 2011. She launched the public platform last year, with the homepage billing her quest as teaching “marketable, digital skills to promote independence for special education students in a technology-driven society and economy.””

Another article on Ms. McKeone’s impressive work can be found here:

Well done, Ms. McKeone!!



Did you know there is a Yearbook and Digital Imaging Class at Southern?! Under the instruction of Southern teacher Barry Hertzberg, the students are taught the art of photography and digital design.

With Southern Alumni support (financial & moral), as well as the generous donation of equipment by teacher, Barry Hertzberg, the class became a reality. While learning the art of photography and digital design, the class embarked on creating this year’s Keepsake.

The aim of the class is to be financially self-perpetuating. The students have their own studio and are taking all the Senior photos. The fact that Southern students created the 2013 Keepsake and are taking all the Senior photos eliminated outsourcing and enabled them to offer affordable professional looking photo packages for the Senior Class.

The only part of the 2013 Keepsake not done by the students is the binding. A few members of the SPHS Alumni Executive Committee have seen the layout of the yearbook on the computer and said they can’t wait to see the finished product in hard copy.

Kudos to Mr. Hertzberg and the Yearbook and Digital Imaging Class!!



We would be remiss if we did not mention the excellent job Southern Principal Otis Hackney is doing. Since taking over the reins three years ago, there has been a definite climate shift for the better at our alma mater. Test scores are improving, violence is down, and the spirit of Southern is back. Principal Hackney will be the first to let you know that it is still not where he would like it to be, but things are moving in the right direction.

Although Principal Hackney did not attend Southern (we’ll let him slide on that one), he is leading our alma mater with that old Southern Pride we all share.

Principal Hackney graduated from Lehigh University. He was featured in the 2012-2013 Winter edition of the school’s Alumni Bulletin, in an article titled, “The Good Principal”. For the full article go to:

(Click on the title to be taken to the article)


South Philadelphia High School is known throughout the world for the talent it has produced. Its alumni include Jack Klugman, the stage TV and film actor; Marian Anderson, a contralto and one of the most celebrated musicians of the 20th century; and Israel Goldstein, the founder of Brandeis University.

Three years ago, the venerable school’s reputation was tarnished. After racial tensions escalated into violence, an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice found that the school had been “deliberately indifferent to the severe and pervasive harassment” of Asian students.

Fifteen miles away, at Springfield Township High School, an upscale suburban school ranked 16th among Philadelphia magazine’s top public high schools in 2009, Principal Otis Hackney followed the news coverage. Hackney had completed his master’s in educational leadership at Lehigh in 2006 and served two years as assistant principal at South Philly before taking the reins at Springfield.

At a faculty meeting, someone asked Hackney if he was glad that he was no longer at South Philly.

“I said, ‘If I had gotten what I wanted, I’d be principal of South Philly right now,’” Hackney recalls.

Not long afterward, a friend from South Philly called. The conversation turned into a job interview, and almost before Hackney knew it, South Philadelphia had asked him to return–as principal.”

[end of excerpt]

The SPHS Alumni Association is proud to have Principal Otis Hackney as principal of our alma mater! Bravo!!



In addition to making a contribution to the Rooftop Green Project at Southern, if you and/or your company can provide a venue for SPHS seniors to complete their 15 hour Community Service requirements, for please contact Assistant Principal Cecelia Merritt, at [email protected], or contact her at 215-952-6220.



The Online Directory on our website ( is now operational again. Any graduate of Southern (whether a Lifetime Member of the Alumni Association or not) can add himself/herself to the Online Directory. Southern graduates may enter as much or as little information as he/she wishes to share.



Hopefully, you are already a Lifetime member of the SPHS Alumni Association. Lifetime (or Memorial) Memberships make a great gift for the Southern graduate who has not yet become a Lifetime Member. Perhaps your mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, aunt, uncle, or other relative graduated from Southern. Surprise them on their birthday or anniversary with a gift of a lifetime – a Lifetime Membership. Lifetime Memberships may be conveniently purchased online at for the one-time cost of just $25 (please indicate the name of the SPHS graduate and new Lifetime Member in the box for Lifetime Member’s name. Thank you.).



What do you think of our new website look? Let us know at [email protected]

Thank you.


SPHS Alumni Association

Visit us online at

“Like” Us on Facebook at

To unsubscribe click here.