Munster High School Inducts Former Students into Newly Created Alumni Hall of Fame

By: Munster High School Last Updated: April 27, 2015

Munster-HOF-Collage-2015Munster High School opened its doors in 1964. To commemorate the 50th anniversary, the school community has decided to celebrate the accomplishments and achievements of past graduates. Beyond Munster High School, many graduates have impacted their professional fields, and this initial induction honors 10 of these individuals.

A steering committee consisting of teachers and administrators was formed to develop the Alumni Hall of Fame. A selection committee consisting of administrators, teachers, parents, and community members processed each application and made the difficult decision of selecting the initial 10 inductees. The pool of nominated graduates was incredible; and since all nominees were worthy of recognition, narrowing the list was an arduous task.

Often times, schools focus their attention on current students, but this process and these individuals have compelled Munster High to examine its history and former students. Learning of their accomplishments, attainments, undertakings, and triumphs reaffirms the mission of striving toward excellence with each student, and it challenges us to empower future Hall of Famers among our current student population. We aspire for our students to dream as these inductees have dreamt, and we relish the opportunity to honor the future achievements of our current students.

Below are the 10 names and a brief summary of their accomplishments.

John Sullivan – (’70) – public policy counsel for Google, U.S. parliamentarian, five times decorated for meritorious service in U.S. Air Force

Bob Grand – (’74) – listed as one of the best lawyers in U.S. in Gov’t relations and municipal law, administrative asst. to Gov. Orr, Sagamore of the Wabash recipient

Dr. Nan Sutter Hayworth (’77) – U.S. House of Representatives (New York), ophthalmologist expert

Michelle Kelchak – (’82) – converted her apartment building in 1991 to a start-up company called Skechers, sales eventually rose to 1.2 billion, Vice President of Design at Keds

Hal Morris – (’83) – World Series champion with the Cincinnati Reds, Director of Scouting for the Anaheim Angels

Dr. Blase Polite – (’87) – University of Chicago oncologist, a leading expert in the U.S. for cancer research, working on Health Policy for US Senator Bill Bradley in Washington, D.C.

Nicole Rittenmeyer – (’87) – Founder of Every Hill Films, won Emmy for 9/11 documentary, received three additional Emmy nominations

James Dryjanski – (’88) – Colonel U.S. Air Force and Base Commander in Little Rock, Arkansas, former “top gun” and later “top gun” instructor

Todd Rokita – (’88) U.S. House of Representatives (Indiana), former Secretary of State

Shaun Blue – (’00) – officer in the U.S. Marine Corps., killed in the line of duty, bronze star recipient, two purple hearts

Former students, colleagues, teachers, and the public are invited to attend the upcoming inaugural Munster High School Alumni Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and dinner on August 21st at the Center for Visual and Performing Arts in Munster. More information about the event and reservations will follow on the Munster High School Alumni Website. Each of the 10 individuals has been personally contacted and has graciously accepted the nomination. All are looking forward to attending the event.

This event will also coincide with the 50th anniversary of the Munster Football Program. Players from the past 50 years have been invited to be recognized at the August 21st home football game against the Lake Central Indians that evening. Former players will also be invited to the induction ceremony and dinner at The Center for Visual and Performing Arts in Munster before the game. Contact Head Football Coach, Leroy Marsh, at the MHS athletic office or by email at lmarsh@munster.us for more information about the 50th Munster Football Reunion weekend. The football alumni group will also hold a dinner- dance on Saturday, August 22nd, at The Center for Visual and Performing Arts in Munster.