Four in­ducted into dis­trict’s Alumni Honor Roll

The Community Connection - - LOCAL NEWS - By Evan Brandt ebrandt@21st-cen­tu­ry­ @PottstownNews on Twit­ter

POTTSTOWN >> Four Pottstown High School alumni were added to the dis­trict’s Alumni Honor Roll Oct. 19 and, for the first time since it was founded 32 years ago, the event also served as a fundraiser for the Foun­da­tion for Pottstown Ed­u­ca­tion.

The in­ductees were Jim Bush, class of 1962, Therese Ri­naldi, class of 1979, Johnathan Cor­son, Class of 1982 and Heather Thiret, class of 1991 and bring­ing the to­tal num­ber in­ducted to the honor roll to 129.

As al­ways, in ad­di­tion to rec­og­niz­ing the achieve­ments of alumni, the high school cer­e­mony is also meant to pro­vide in­sight and in­spi­ra­tion to cur­rent stu­dents about their po­ten­tial to achieve af­ter high school.

Af­ter the cer­e­mony at the high school, a re­cep­tion was held at Brook­side Coun­try Club.

James Bush

Af­ter grad­u­a­tion in 1962, Bush served in the U.S. Army Re­serves and at­tended Pierce Ju­nior Col­lege earn­ing his as­so­ciates de­gree in ac­count­ing in 1970. Bush then earned his bach­e­lor’s de­gree in busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tion from Ursi­nus Col­lege. From May of 1964 through Septem­ber 1968, he worked as a com­mer­cial loan of­fi­cer and as­sis­tant branch man­ager for the Philadel­phia Na­tional Bank in Pottstown.

Then in 1960, Bush re­turned to his alma mater be­com­ing the su­per­vi­sor of ac­count­ing and as­sis­tant busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tor be­fore be­ing hired as the busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tor in 1968 un­til his re­tire­ment in June of 2006.

“I have been in­volved with the Pottstown School Dis­trict for 50 years of my life (12 years as a stu­dent, 38 years as an em­ployee). The Pottstown School has been and con­tin­ues to be a leader in ed­u­ca­tion in the area,” Bush said.

“I am hon­ored to be rec­og­nized by the school dis­trict as a mem­ber of the Alumni Honor Roll. When I look at ac­com­plish­ments of those pre­vi­ous and cur­rent in­ductees, I am proud to be in­cluded as a mem­ber,” he said.

Therese Ri­naldi

Af­ter high school, Ri­naldi earned her bach­e­lor of sci­ence de­gree in nurs­ing from Wi­dener Uni­ver­sity. In 1989 she earned her de­gree of doc­tor of po­di­atric medicine from the Penn­syl­va­nia Col­lege of Po­di­atric Medicine.

Af­ter earn­ing her doc­tor­ate, Ri­naldi be­came a po­di­atric sur­gi­cal res­i­dent at what is now known as Wash­ing­ton Hospi­tal Cen­ter. In 1990, she re­turned to Pottstown as a di­rec­tor and­sSur­geon for the Pottstown Foot and An­kle Cen­ter be­fore be­com­ing a part­ner and prac­ti­tioner at the Foot and An­kle Health Group, PC in Pottstown, Roy­ers­ford and Boy­er­town.

When asked what grad­u­at­ing from Pottstown High School means to her, Ri­naldi re­sponded “Grad­u­at­ing from the same high school as both of my par­ents was a grand trib­ute to their faith in the qual­ity of the ed­u­ca­tion they re­ceived. I know Pottstown High School equipped me with the nec­es­sary knowl­edge, ex­pe­ri­ence, con­fi­dence and skills to go any­where and do any­thing I dreamed - for that I am thank­ful.”

Jonathan Cor­son

Cor­son is a re­ac­tor op­er­a­tor for Arkema Chem­i­cals.

He is ex­tremely ac­tive in the Pottstown com­mu­nity and is cur­rently serv­ing as the pres­i­dent of the Pottstown NAACP, a po­si­tion that he has held for the past two years. He is also a Penn­syl­va­nia State Con­sta­ble, serv­ing since 2013, and also serves on the Pottstown Hu­man Re­la­tions Com­mis­sion.

From 1980 through 2000, Cor­son served as a trustee for the Church of the Liv­ing God where he played the or­gan and was a drum­mer. Other com­mu­nity ac­tiv­i­ties in­clude serv­ing on the Grants Com­mit­tee for the Pottstown Area Health and Well­ness Foun­da­tion, Co-Cap­tain for the Amer­i­can Cancer So­ci­ety Re­lay for Life, a board mem­ber for the Rick­etts Com­mu­nity Cen­ter and par­tic­i­pated in the Foun­da­tion for Pottstown Ed­u­ca­tion’s Danc­ing with the Stars.

Grad­u­at­ing from Pottstown High School, “is a part of a proud and rich his­tory which go­ing back to the Ch­est­mont League, watch­ing Pottstown High School’s finest play­ing in those Fri­day night foot­ball games. It seemed like the whole town shut­down to come out and watch,” Cor­son said.

“It was also the Pottstown/OJR Thanks­giv­ing Day foot­ball games, see­ing some of those lo­cal heroes come back home. It was also the bas­ket­ball games where if you did not get there be­fore half time of the JV game you did not get a seat. The base­ball games, track meets and wrestling matches, and be­ing men­tored by those lo­cal hero’s at the Rick­etts Cen­ter and to have some of my friends grow up to be­come some of Pottstown Finest,” Cor­son said.

Heather Thiret

Thiret earned her bach­e­lor of sci­ence de­gree from West Ch­ester Uni­ver­sity and holds a Penn­syl­va­nia Teach­ing Cer­tifi­cate. She is cur­rently work­ing on her mas­ter’s de­gree in lead­er­ship through Duquesne Uni­ver­sity in Pitts­burgh.

She en­tered the ser­vice in 1992 and has spent 25 years there, 10 as en­listed and 15 as an of­fi­cer. Heather holds a rank­ing of Ma­jor in the U.S. Army and has re­ceived sev­eral honors in­clud­ing a Bronze Star Medal.

She has also served as a TAC Of­fi­cer/In­struc­tor at the OCS Of­fi­cer Can­di­date School Acad­emy from 20102013. She is cur­rently the Of­fi­cer In Charge of Mil­i­tary As­cen­sions Vi­tal to Na­tional In­ter­est Pro­gram in Fort Belvoir, Va. Thiret has been ac­tive in the Vet­er­ans Outreach Pro­gram/Home­less Vets and the Big Broth­ers/Big Sis­ters of Amer­ica.

“I am proud to be from Pottstown, be­cause th­ese are my roots. The fa­mil­iar places and faces that con­tinue to be part of my life even to­day, al­most 25 years af­ter I left. It is al­ways still good to come ‘home,’” Thiret said.

“Home­town, isn’t just a place, it is a feel­ing ... from Ice House Deli, Manatawny Park, Brun­ish’s, Frankie and Johnny’s, the Elks, the Carousel, Pottstown Tro­jans, The Mer­cury, High Street, Water­front Park, Sun­ny­brook Ball­room, the com­mu­nity peo­ple (alumni) and feel­ing etc ... it’s the fa­mil­iar places and faces that con­tinue to make me proud to come home and call Pottstown home,” she said.


From left, new Alumni Honor Roll in­ductees James Bush, Therese Ri­naldi, Jonathan Cor­son and Heather Thiret with their plaques.


Pottstown High School stu­dents who es­corted this year’s in­ductees were, from left, Jahyre Graves, Sub­rina Ali, As­gar Ali and Jamie Sharp.

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