The annual Colusa High School Alumni Association “You Inspired Me” awards ceremony was just that – inspiring.
Four individuals were celebrated last Thursday night for their passion for education, and their names added to the inspiration wall near the school’s football field.
The ceremony, which was held in the Colusa High School gymnasium before the start of the varsity girls basketball games against Winters, honored former administrator Ed Conrado and retired teachers Lee and Marian Boyes, and the late Alan Becker, for their commitment to Colusa Unified School District students.
Jeff Becker, of Stockton, accepted his father’s framed commemoration from Alumna Cathy Schulback, who graduated with the class of 1971.
Alan Becker died in 1993, after 28 years of service at Colusa High School. He is remembered as a teacher that did more than teach just reading and writing, but fostered student development by exposing them to new ideas.
“I’m honored to accept this, and I’m grateful to Cathy for nominating my dad for the inspire award,” said Jeff Becker, who teaches political science at the University of the Pacific.
Bonnie Peterson presented a joint commemoration to Lee and Marian Boyes, both longtime teachers in Colusa County.
Lee Boyes was the motivation for sending Egling Middle School sixth graders to the Woodleaf Outdoor Science Camp (presently Shady Creek) for 28 years. Marian Boyes taught preschool through college during her lengthy career in education.
Together, the Boyes’ were instrumental in helping raise the money through the school’s fundraising recycling program for Colusa students to attend Woodleaf.
The final presentation was to Ed Conrado, who was principal of Burchfield Primary School and Egling Middle School from 1983 to 2010.
Conrado is remembered for his support and encouragement of young students, and his leadership and involvement in extracurricular activities, such as youth soccer and student trips to Washington D.C., which provided students with an excellent foundation for high school.
Alumna Mary Little presented Conrado with his plaque, thanking him for 27 years of service, of which 22 years were spent at Egling.
“This was a tremendous honor, especially to be honored with Lee and those other fine folks,” Conrado said, following the ceremony.
Conrado was principal when Lee Boyes was a teacher, and attended Woodleaf with him and the students.
Most important, however, Conrado is remembered for shaping Colusa’s youth by encouraging them to be and do their best every day.
“I was able to shake the hands and give diplomas to 2,200 eighth graders,” Conrado said. “To me, that is very special.”
Jerry Davies, who graduated from Colusa High School in 1975, officiated over last Thursday’s ceremony.
The Colusa Alumni Association in 2018 celebrates 16 years of giving back to the school through donations (membership) from former Colusa High School students, who graduated from the 1930s to present. ■