Oroville Union High School District
2016 Hall of Fame Inductees
Class of 2016 Group Picture
2016 Hall of Fame Inductees
Class of 2016 Group Picture
|Adilah (Lovey) Barnes graduated from Oroville High School (OHS) in 1968 and was one of three valedictorians in her class. She was a member of the California Scholastic Federation (CSF), on the Honor Roll and a member of the National Honor Society. Lovey was Senior Class Secretary, Soroptimist Girl-of-the-Month, Editor of the Tiger Tales school newspaper, and won area competitions in the Lions Club Public Speaking contests, where she just missed going to the state competition by one level.
During three summers while at OHS, she participated in Project Upward Bound (PUB) at Chico State University, and it was there that she performed in her very first play,” The Ugly Duckling.” It was also at PUB that she met her mentor-to-be, Dr. J. Herman Blake and from that experience, decided to enroll at University of California at Santa Cruz (UCSC).
Adilah earned her B.A. degree in Theatre Arts from UCSC in 1972, and in her sophomore year, was an exchange student at Tougaloo College, a private African American College in Tougaloo, MS. As a junior, she spent one semester at the private Fine Arts school, Emerson College, in Boston. For her senior project, she directed a solo show at UCSC.
Following her years at UCSC, Adilah continued on a highly successful 50-year career as an actor, bestselling author, producer, teacher, and internet talk show host. On television, she is best known for her five year recurring role as “Anne Marie” on the top-rated ABC show, “Roseanne.” She has guest-starred on numerous shows including “The Middle,” “Body of Proof,” “Harry’s Law,” and “Prime Suspect.” She played opposite Oscar winning-actor Hillary Swank on HBO’s “Iron Jawed Angels.” In film, she played opposite two Academy Award winners, Julia Roberts in “Erin Brockovich” and Sandra Bullock in “Murder by Numbers.”
It was on stage that Adilah found her true love, and an amazing level of success. She toured in her own one-woman play, I Am That I Am: Woman, Black, a historical journey into the lives of seven renowned women, among them Harriet Tubman and Maya Angelou. The play has toured since 1990 on three continents and in 40 states, with performances at colleges, universities, festivals, museums, galleries, juvenile halls, city facilities and private gatherings. In 1996, Adilah returned home and performed in her solo play to a sold out house at the State Theatre in downtown Oroville
In 2007, Adilah founded The Writers Well, an international literary writers retreat for women in Sharpburg, GA. Here, writers who have come as far away as Ghana and Puerto Rico have written from genres that include screenplays, memoirs, solo shows, poetry, children’s pictorial books, and academic writings. Her bestselling book, On My Own Terms: One Actor’s Journey, published in 2008, was named #3 in 2009 by Essence Magazine behind President Obama’s two books. She returned to Oroville in 2009 for a well-attended book signing at the State Theatre.
Adilah taught at the American Conservatory Theatre and the San Francisco School of Dramatic Arts, the Maria Gibbs’ Crossroads Arts Academy in Los Angeles, and in 1993, co-founded the Los Angeles (LA) Women’s Theatre Festival that has produced well over 500 solo artists from around the globe and served over 3,000 youth in regular and after-school programs in the LA Unified School District.
Throughout her career, honors and awards have come in abundance to Adilah and are far too numerous to list. One special award came to her in 2006 when she won the Women in Theatre Award in Los Angeles, and another in 2010 with the establishment of the 1st Annual Adilah Barnes Arts and Literary Achievement Scholarship for inner-city students in Minneapolis, MN. Also in 2010, she was named one of the 50 most influential alumni of UC Santa Cruz.
Community service has always been part of Adilah’s life as she served seven years on the UCSC Alumni Board, returns to UCSC to participate in the annual multi-cultural conference, co-founded Circle of Sisters, A Reading Circle, and in 1996 returned to Oroville to perform her play as well as visit local schools to speak to students. She was also honored by being presented with the Oroville Martin Luther King Day Award and the Key to the City.
Adilah makes her home in North Hollywood, California.
Machelle Conn graduated from Las Plumas High School (LPHS) in 1963 as a member of its first graduating class. She attended class at Oroville High School (OHS) from 1959-61 and then from 1961-63, classes were split between the two schools.
Academically, she was in the top one-third of her class, a member of the California Scholastic Federation (CSF) and on the honor roll. She was the recipient of the Betty Crocker Homemakers Award as well as the Native Daughters of the Golden West, Good Citizen Award. Active in Student Body affairs, Machelle was Secretary of Activities and a member of the Press Club during her junior year, and then served as Vice President of her senior class.
Following graduation from LPHS, Machelle went on to Chico State College (CSC), and after one year, left school for marriage and a family. Many years later in 1996, at age 50, she earned her A.A. degree, graduating with honors from Butte College.
Machelle worked as an Instructional Aide at Wyandotte Avenue School in Oroville for four years and from1986-2001, worked in the Butte County Assessor’s Office. She also worked in retail jobs in Oroville at the City of Paris and K-Mart.
Community service in her hometown of Oroville has dominated Machelle’s entire adult life. It is really not what she does, it has become who she is. She is truly one who rarely thinks of herself, always willing to give and rarely receive.
At the City of Oroville Docents Awards Luncheon in January 2016, she was awarded ruby and sapphire pins for her 636 hours of docent service. It has been said by many, that if it were not for Machelle, Oroville’s outstanding museums might not be open to the public. Oroville Hospital has also been the recipient of Machelle’s time as she has donated countless numbers of hours over many years.
Machelle was appointed to a seat on the City of Oroville Park Commission in 2010 where she continues to serve as a member and is currently the Vice Chairperson. She has served as commissioner on the City’s Arts Commission since 2012.
She has been or currently is a member of numerous community organizations. Among them are Friends of the Library, Quota Club, Butte County Historical Society, STAGE, Friends of the Arts, Oroville Art League, and both the Chico and Paradise Art Centers. She is a volunteer peer leader of the OSHER Lifelong Learning Institute at Chico State University and gives presentations at Oroville museums.
Known for her organizational and leadership skills, Machelle has led numerous community events involving local museums, community trips to San Francisco to the M.H. DeYoung Museum, and organized local group tours to the State Capitol in Sacramento. She was a member of the 2006 LPHS/OHS committee that organized and led a highly successful combined reunion in Oroville and served in leadership roles in the planning and organization of the annual Salmon Festival and Feather Fiesta Days celebrations.
Machelle was a key planner in developing an “Emergency Plan of Action” for all museums in order to provide and safe environment for all docents and patrons. She was also very instrumental in getting safety cameras installed at the Lott Home and plays a role in developing the annual Docent Schedule for staffing all the City Museums.
Quotes often heard from local citizens regarding Machelle are: “She’s a go to person”, “Machelle is a bundle of energy and ideas that have benefited our city”; “Machelle is a dynamic, dedicated community advocate and a person with a wealth of knowledge about our community”; “She has a passion for the Arts, Cultural and Educational well-being of our community”; and “If there is a workday happening, Machelle will be there”.
Machelle has lived in Oroville off and on for over 50 years. She resides in town with her husband, Lloyd, and has five children, 10 grandchildren, and one great-granddaughter.
|Larry Heath graduated from Oroville High School (OHS) in 1964. He was a lifetime member of the California Scholastic Federation (CSF), and a Bank of America Award winner for “Distinguished Achievement and Promise of Future Success and Service to Society”. As a senior, he was named OHS Man of the Month by the Oroville Junior Chamber of Commerce, was Block O president and senior class president. He was an outstanding all-around athlete, excelling in football, basketball and baseball, receiving All-League honors in each sport, including three years as an All-League catcher. He was the starting catcher on the OHS Varsity baseball team his freshman year.
Larry went to Stanford University on a football scholarship and in his sophomore year transferred his scholarship to baseball. He earned All-League Honorable Mention his freshman year and playing on a PAC 8 championship team his junior year. After graduating with a B.A. degree in biological sciences in 1968, he went to the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Medical School earning his M.D. degree in 1972. He spent part of his fourth year training in London, England at the Royal Free Hospital. For the next five years, he trained at the San Joaquin General Hospital in Stockton and then the UC Davis, Sacramento Medical Center, completing his internship, medical residency and a one year fellowship in infectious diseases and immunology.
Larry’s 36-year medical career began in 1977 as the Director of Emergency Services at the San Joaquin General Hospital. He continued his focus on emergency room work at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Stockton until 1980 when he started his private internal medicine practice in Lodi, California. In Lodi/Stockton, he diagnosed and treated many of the earliest cases of AIDS when the epidemic first appeared in 1980. While in Lodi, he held many positions, including Medical Department Chairman at Lodi Memorial Hospital, President of Lodi IPA Medical Group, Inc. and board member of the Delta Blood Bank. In 1992, he moved his family to Wisconsin where he served as a staff physician in both the Internal Medicine and Urgent Care Departments at the Marshfield Clinic for the next 17 years. In 2008, Larry and his wife moved to Virginia to be closer to their three sons, all living on the East Coast. He worked as an internal medicine and wound healing specialist in Gainesville and Warrenton until his retirement in 2013.
In 2003, Larry created the Marshfield Clinic International Medical Endowment. The endowment funded the care of patients from third world countries who did not have access to advanced medical/surgical technology. The endowment wound down a few years ago when all assets were transferred to Doctors Without Borders to help fight the Ebola virus epidemic in West Africa.
Dr. Heath has authored or co-authored five articles and two abstracts in professional publications. He also wrote a two part series for Midwestern newspapers about his experiences in Afghanistan in 1978. He has been a member of the Alpha Omega Honor Medical Society, the American College of Physicians, and Union of Concerned Scientists and Physicians for Social Responsibility. He was inducted into the Northern California Sports Hall of Fame in 2012.
Larry’s community service activity is extensive and varied. He has coached youth soccer and baseball and was a board member of the Marshfield Youth Hockey Association. He led the fundraising drive to fund a permanent indoor ice hockey rink in Marshfield and served as the attending physician for youth hockey games dealing with on ice injuries. He has served as Town Board Supervisor for the McMillan Township, WI. As a supervisor for the McMillan Park Committee, he supervised the fundraising, planning and construction of a nine acre multi-facility park. He also was one of the creators of the township’s Smart Growth Plan. In Marshfield, he spoke often to various groups, such as the Rotary Club, promoting the Marshfield Clinic’s International Medical Endowment. For 40 years, Larry served as a volunteer physician at free/migrant clinics in San Joaquin County, CA, Waushara County, WI, and Fauquier County, VA. In 1978 he served as a volunteer physician for Care-Medico in Kabul, Afghanistan, providing care and teaching residents at the Jamhouriat Hospital, as well as giving lectures at the University of Kabul.
Larry paid high tribute to his OUHSD Hall of Fame coach John Johnson, “Johnny Johnson was like a second father to me. I thought the world of him.” Larry played for some coaching legends at Stanford, including Dick Vermeil, John Ralston, and Bill Walsh.
Larry and Jeanette, married for 37 years, make their home in Lake Ridge, Virginia.
|Jim Hill graduated from Oroville High School (OHS) in 1947, was a member of the Honor Society and played the trombone in the school band all four years. Being a talented musician, he was also a member of the Royal Tigers Swing Band that played at all OHS functions even though it was not officially a school band. This 16 piece band was a corporation founded in 1942 by Claude Wilson.
The Royal Tigers Swing Band also played at various community and area events and at most all dances throughout the North State. Jim was an alternate for the All-Stars band that played at the weekly Robinson Corner Saturday Night Dances and was instrumental in bringing world renowned trumpet player Louis Armstrong to Oroville to give a concert at the Municipal Auditorium. When not playing in bands, Jim delivered medical prescriptions by bicycle for a local pharmacy and sold tickets at the Empire Movie Theater.
Following graduation from OHS, Jim attended the University of California at Berkeley (Cal) for two years and played in their renowned marching band. In January of 1949, he played the trombone while marching with the band in the annual Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, CA. He was also a member of the Cal 8 Man Jazz Band that played at many Bay Area public and private events. After leaving Cal, Jim completed the Dale Carnegie Leadership and Sales course.
Jim’s family owned and operated Hill Furniture from 1931 to 1988 and Jim was the primary owner/manager from 1950 until his retirement in 1988. With local friend and business man Bob Stern, they founded the Oroville Downtown Business Association (ODBA) in which JIm was active for 35 plus years. The focus of the ODBA was to promote shopping in Historic Downtown. The ODBA currently plays a major role in Feather Fiesta Days, The Salmon Festival, Community Christmas Tree Lighting, the Parade of Lights, and the Downtown Farmer’s Market to name a few.
Jim’s lifelong goal was to run the family business and serve the Oroville community, and that he did. He felt he could best serve Oroville by focusing his community service to the ODBA through promotional activities designed to increase public Interest, improving the downtown environment, and by serving the local public schools.
Using his leadership abilities, Jim served as president of the Oroville Junior Chamber of Commerce and the Oroville Chamber of Commerce, and helped establish the “Little Miss Oroville” contest. He served as trustee in the Oroville City Elementary School District (OCESD) for 12 years and the Butte County Office of Education for eight years. As an OCESD trustee, Jim rarely missed any kind of school event during his tenure on that board.
In addition to the above, Jim was the chairman of the Community Concert Association, sponsored Little League teams, was involved with the Boy Scouts of America, and worked tirelessly on the committee for Beautification and Revitalization of Downtown Oroville.
Over the years, Jim helped bring many celebrities to town in including Michael Landon of the TV hit show, “Bonanza”, James Drury, of “The Virginian”, and Brian Kelly of “Flipper” to serve as Grand Marshals of the Feather Fiesta Days Parade.
Carroll Johnson, 27-year Hill Furniture employee and great friend to Jim, wrote, “The opportunities of working for Jim and Hill Furniture were enormous for me personally. Jim supported my endeavors to further my education in public speaking and community service, along with interior design. He gave the same encouragement to all of his employees.”
In 2001, Jim was the featured as “The Personality” in the Oroville Mirror newspaper. The article ended with, “His dedication to Oroville is easily recognized and his continuing friendship to the community is a gift to us all.”
Jim passed away in 2015 and spent most of his life living in the family home, built by his parents on Canyon Highlands Drive. At that time, it was on the outskirts of town and only the seventh home in that area.
He leaves his wife Wilma, five children, 16 grandchildren, and one great-granddaughter.
|Carol George Johnson graduated from Oroville High School (OHS) in 1955, maintaining an overall 3.5 grade point average and holding membership in the California Scholastic Federation (CSF) for six semesters. She was president of the Girls Athletic Association (GAA) and organized and participated in intramural sports. There were no inter-scholastic sports for girls in that era. She served as organizer of the Intramural Invitational Sports Days that hosted many neighboring schools in the region and participated in those events. Carol was also a member of the French Club and outside of school, a 4-H Club member.
Following her graduation from OHS, Carol earned her B.A. degree from Chico State College (CSC) in 1959 and her M.A. degree in 1965. She was president of the Women’s Athletic Association and with that position, came the responsibility to serve on the Associated Student Body’s Advisory and Governing Committees. She received a Physical Education Scholarship and was an active member of the Cardinal Key honors program. In 1982, she received her Administrative Credential in Education from San Diego State University. While in college, she played field hockey, badminton, volleyball, basketball and tennis - all as intramural sports on campus.
Upon graduation from CSC, Carol’s 32 year teaching and coaching career began when she was hired by OHS to teach physical education (PE) and coordinate Sports Days on Saturdays. From OHS, she matriculated to Marysville High School (MHS) where she taught PE and had her first opportunity to coach two interscholastic girls’ athletic teams, tennis and track and field. After two years at MHS, she was hired at Gridley High School (GHS) where she spent the next 16 years teaching and coaching.
At GHS, she coached several Northern Section California Interscholastic Federation (NSCIF) championship teams in tennis, track and field, field hockey, basketball and volleyball. One of her basketball teams went 60-0 during their four years of high school. Two of her athletes went on to world class track and field fame, one participating in the Pan American Games and the other winning a silver medal in the women’s discus at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles.
In addition to teaching and coaching at GHS, Carol served as Athletic Director on several NSCIF committees for girl’s sports. When Title IX hit the sports scene, Carol assisted section schools in achieving compliance with the statutes for equity in sports for girls. She was the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) women’s state advisory chair for girl’s athletics, making her a Title IX pioneer.
After completing her career at GHS in the spring of 1982, Carol accepted an administrative position at Lake Elsinore High School (LEHS) in Riverside County, where she served as Athletic/Activities Director for a school of 2,700 students. In her second year there, the position became full time Activities Director which also carried the responsibility of teaching and advising the student leadership class that included student body officers. During her last four years at LEHS, she was one of three assistant principals handling student discipline, testing, coordinating campus supervisors, and performing teacher evaluations. She also shared Summer School principal duties.
Many awards and honors came to Carol during her career. One of the most cherished by her was when she was selected by her peers at the summer 1980 Cal Poly Physical Education Workshop to be Director of the 1982 session that was attended by over 200 teachers. She was again honored by her peers when she was recognized as the California State High School Track and Field Coach of the Year. In 1998 she was inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame at California State University, Chico.
One of her favorite sayings from an anonymous source is, “To learn and never be filled is wisdom! To teach and never be weary is love”!
Carol’s parents, Al and Virginia George, were both employed as bus drivers at OUHSD, serving students for 25 years.
Carol resides at Big Bear Lake where she volunteers at the local library.
|Barbara Little grew up in San Francisco, CA earning her diploma from Lowell High School. She graduated magna cum laude from California State University, Chico, where she earned her B.A. and M.A. degrees and counseling and teaching credentials.
Her distinguished 40-year career in education began in December 1970, when she was hired by the Oroville Union High School District (OUHSD), her first assignment being a group counselor at both Oroville and Las Plumas High Schools. After two years, she was moved to OHS as a full time counselor and also team taught a psychology class for eight years. In the 1982-83 school year, she was a full-time Title I teacher and the following year assumed head counseling duties from her mentor, OUHSD Hall of Famer, Frank O’Neill. Barbara continued in that position until her retirement in 2011.
As head counselor, Barbara assisted students in achieving their academic goals, monitored their progress towards graduation, provided college and career guidance to them, as well as scholarship and financial aid information. Barbara was at her best, and most comfortable, when she was working one-on-one with students.
Coordinating the annual end of the year Scholarship Convocation was Barbara’s pet project. During her tenure as coordinator, the convocation honored higher numbers of students each year. The event was first held in the quad area on the OHS campus, then moved to the OHS Gym, then to the Municipal Auditorium, and finally to its current location at the State Theatre in Historic Downtown Oroville. Each year the event honored higher numbers of students and became more prestigious.
Barbara’s goal was to make as many scholarships as possible available to OHS students and did her best to see that every student who applied was a successful applicant. During her 28 year tenure as head counselor, the amount of scholarship money available to students increased each year. A grand total of $4,937,129 was awarded to OHS students on her watch!
From 2007 to 2014, seven OHS students were awarded the prestigious Gates Millennium Scholarship, averaging $97,000 each. The year 2009 saw four Gates Scholarship winners from OHS.
In 2006, Barbara became faculty advisor to the OHS Interact Club, founded and sponsored by the Oroville Sunrise Rotary. She was advisor to the club until her retirement in 2011, and then continued in that capacity until June 2016. Club members have been, and continue to be, involved in numerous community projects namely, Socks-That Rock, Shoes-That-Fit, and donating to the Northwest SPCA. From 2006-2016, during an annual two week period, Interact Club students raised $19,563 for POLIO PLUS, sponsored by Sunrise Rotary. In 2008, the Club received the National Presidential citation from the International Rotary Club.
Barbara’s connection to Oroville and OUHSD did not end with her retirement. She continues her membership in the Sunrise Rotary Club, the Oroville section of the California Retired Teachers Association (CalRTA), and since 1971, has never missed a Fellows Club Top Ten Scholastic Achievement Awards event. The OHS scholarship convocation also continues to be on her attendance list of local events.
Over the years, Barbara has earned numerous honors and awards, among them, being named a Paul Harris Fellow. Other awards received were the Sunrise Rotary Vocational Service Award, the Ross/Harmon Oroville Educator of the Year Award, the Oroville Secondary Teachers Association Friend of Education Award, and the CalRTA Division 32 Retired Teacher of the Year Award.
Quotes from letters of support from two retired secretaries at OHS: (1) “If ever I would be asked to write ONE letter for ONE person, of all the people I know, this would be THE letter” and (2) “There is no doubt in my mind, or anyone else’s, that Barbara Little IS “Oroville High School” to the thousands of students who walked through its halls during her time there.”
Barbara is in Oroville at least one day each week, and makes her home in Chico with her beloved dog, Boo.
|Larry Matthews graduated from Oroville High School (OHS) in 1969. He was a member of the Future Farmers of America, and the Campus Highways Radio program during his junior and senior years. He was a feature writer for the school newspaper, Tiger Tales, as a senior. Writing for the Tiger Tales sparked his interest in journalism.
In 1977, Larry earned his Associate of Arts Degree in social science from Butte Community College and went on to take various classes in criminal justice and management at Yuba Community College. Later on, he received FCC Third Class Radio Telephone and California Notary Public Certification.
From 1969-73, Larry served in the United States Navy. He went to Radioman School in San Diego, CA for three months and the following year was Radioman/Yeoman at Naval Transmitting Facility, Dixon, CA. In 1971, he was sent to serve in Vietnam and was on an ammunition ship for four months. The next eight months saw him on an aircraft carrier working as a Petty Officer Third Class, also in Vietnam.
Larry received numerous military honors including the Vietnam Service Medal with three campaign stars, the Vietnam Campaign Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, and the National Defense Service Medal. He was awarded the Meritorious Unit Commendation while aboard the USS Oriskany in Vietnam.
Following his military service, Larry spent seven years as a Butte County Veterans Service Representative, and nine years in Yuba and Sutter Counties where he managed a Veterans assistance/advocacy program. From 1990-2011, he was a Child Support Specialist III for the District Attorney Family Support Division/Sutter County Department for Child Support Services. He retired in July 2011.
Civilian awards also came in high numbers to Larry and included certificates and plaques of appreciation from the Butte-Glenn Veteran’s Employment Committee, the Yuba-Sutter High Twelve Club, the Marysville Kiwanis Club, and the California Association of Veterans Service Officers where he was an officer for five years. Upon retiring, Larry received the Gold Resolution from the Sutter County Board of Supervisors.
Writing has always been a love of Larry’s, and over the years he has authored monthly newspaper columns in the Territorial Dispatch Newspaper in Marysville, as well as individual articles on various topics also in the Territorial Dispatch. Since 1998, he has written and built 17 history-based web sites, many on Oroville area sites including Table Mountain, the Oroville Dam Train Tunnel, Larry’s Feather Falls Web Site, Bald Rock and Bald Rock Dome, the Oroville High School Class of 1969 Web Site, and Historic Bridges in Butte, Nevada, and Yuba Counties.
In 2012, a representative of Arcadia Publishing saw Larry’s Oroville Dam train tunnel collision history on his web site and asked him if he’d do a book on building the dam. After 15 months of intensive research, Arcadia published Larry’s first book, “The Building of the Oroville Dam”. He dedicated the book to the 34 men who died building the dam and conducted book signings throughout the Oroville area, and in Sutter and Yuba Counties.
His second book, “The Lost Communities of Lake Oroville” is a pending Arcadia “Images of America” book. Research has been ongoing for the book since January of 2015 and at least 35 individuals and agencies have contributed information and photographs to the book. The publication will consist of over 200 historic photographs and is expected to be published in November 2016.
While continuing to write, Larry served his community coordinating the Yuba and Sutter Counties Dedication of the California Vietnam Veterans Memorial, coordinating and publicizing the parade and ceremony, and doing guest interviews and public appearances from 1980-88. He also served on the 45th OHS class reunion committee, creating a class roster and collecting biographical information on class members. He continues to maintain the class of 1969 web site that he created on 2008.
Larry has been referred to as one of the best historians of twentieth century history of the Oroville region.
He and his wife, Sharon, reside in Yuba City, CA.
Dr. Clifford Thompson
|Dr. Clifford Thompson graduated from Las Plumas High School (LPHS) in 1972 with an overall 3.5 grade point average and was a Top Ten student all four years. He was a Bank of America, PG&E and National Merit Scholar, and won first place in the Rotary International public speaking forum. He lettered in football, basketball and track and was a member of Block LP. He was class president during his freshman and sophomore years and student body president as a senior.
While at LPHS, Clifford was very involved in the music program, serving on the Music Council, playing in the Concert Band, and was the first drum major at LPHS when the school won its first trophy in the Feather Fiesta Days Parade. He also served as assistant band director.
Following graduation from LPHS, Clifford earned his B.A. degree from University of California at Davis (UCD) in 1976, and then went on to earn his B.S. and M.S. degrees at Californian State University, Hayward in 1984. He earned his Ed.D degree at the University of San Francisco (USF) in 1999. While at UCD, Clifford was one of the founding members of the UCD Black Gospel Choir. In addition to his BA, BS, and Ed.D degrees, he earned his Masters and Doctor of Theology degrees at Fuller Seminar.
Clifford’s 35 years in education originated in Oroville where he was a substitute teacher at Sierra Del Oro School and continued teaching in Oakland, CA at the elementary, secondary, and university levels. He spent many years working in the public school system during the daylight hours and at universities in the evening and during the summers.
He taught at Stonehurst and Garfield Elementary Schools and Madison Middle School, all in Oakland, and served as principal at both Oakland Technical and Emery High Schools. His university teaching took place at Patten University, California State University, East Bay, and the University of Phoenix.
In 2010, Dr. Thompson was appointed to lead the prestigious new Dr. Herbert Guice Christian Academy, and was principal there for three years. The private elementary school in Oakland achieved distinction for its excellent academic performance by its students. In 2013, he served as principal of the 100 Black Men Community School, an all-male public charter school in Oakland and is currently the principal of the Community School for Creative Education, also in Oakland. He has no immediate plans for retirement.
Along with his busy career in education, Clifford found time to author his first book, Apologetics: What Do You Really Believe, published in 2012. He is currently working on his second book which will deal with educational leadership and has published numerous newspaper articles on test taking strategies, learning the basics, navigating the educational system and parental support.
Throughout his career, Clifford has received many awards and recognition for his contributions to education and his community. Among institutions that have recognized Dr. Thompson are Catholic Charities of the East Bay, University of San Francisco, Oakland Unified School District, Evangelical Outreach Ministry and Interaction Associates. In 2015, he was the keynote speaker at the Knowledge Is Power Youth Leadership Conference in Oakland.
Dr. Thompson has been highly involved in his Oakland community for many years, not only in his church, but as an educational liaison for Civic Pride, Board member for Catholic Charities, a community reading tutor, and serving as a food bagger and server for the Oakland Food Bank.
In addition to the above, Clifford has never forgotten his home town, having been a 25 year participant in the Oroville religious community as a motivational speaker, officiant, and community organizer in South Oroville. For 17 years, he has served as master of ceremonies for the Oroville Martin Luther King (MLK) Celebration, and was the keynote speaker on two occasions. One of his greatest pleasures is his continued involvement in the MLK celebration. Performing weddings and funerals in Oroville are also part of Clifford’s community service.
Dr. Thompson has made his home in Oakland for 36 years and is the father of one son who lives in New York.
|David Eugene Washington graduated from Oroville High School (OHS) in 1958 and won 12 Block O letters in his four years on campus. Many locals consider David the greatest all-around athlete in the history of Oroville.
David played four years of football at OHS, earning All Sierra Foothill League (SFL) and All Northern California honors as a senior, and serving as captain during the team’s undefeated 1957 season. While at OHS, he led his team to its fourth SFL title in five years. He capped off his senior year by being named one of 25 players in Northern California to play in the prestigious North-South Shrine All-Star game at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. His OHS teammate, Carl Overstreet, was also named to the team as was their coach John Johnson, who was selected to coach the North Shrine team.
David also played four years of basketball, earning all SFL honors as a junior and a senior, and all Acker Tournament team as a senior. His OHS 1957 team place fifth in the highly acclaimed Tournament of Champions played in the San Francisco Bay Area.
He was a member of the OHS track and field team all four years and was a stand-out performer in four events. As a junior, he set the school record in the shot put with a heave of 53-5, a mark that would have won that Northern Section event in 2016.
David was Block O vice-president as a junior, and as a senior, was named Senior Athlete of the Year in both football and basketball, the only student named in two sports.
Upon graduating from OHS, David was awarded a full football scholarship to the University of Southern California (USC). In those days, Santa Monica Junior College served as a farm team school for USC, and David played on their National Championship team and earned his Associate of Arts Degree. He then transferred to USC and earned letters in the two years he played there.
Following college football, David went on to a nine year career in the National Football League (NFL) and the Canadian Football league (CFL). He is the only Oroville athlete to ever play in both professional football leagues. In the NFL, he played one year for the Dallas Cowboys and then went to Kansas City where he was active in most games. He played receiver for the Denver Broncos in 1968, where he told the coaches, “I want to play. I don’t want to sit on the bench and take your money.”
After his brief time in the NFL, David went on to a successful seven year career in the CFL. He signed with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and played tight end in that organization for several years. After retiring from professional football, he went to work for Canadian Pacific Railroad as a carman and owned and maintained several rental homes. From 1972-95, he started and owned a successful used car business, and remained in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada for the remainder of his adult life. While in Winnipeg, David served as assistant high school football coach and also coached football and other youth sports. He was well known in his community, loved by all who knew him, and considered a hero with a heart as big as all outdoors.
OUHSD Hall of Fame member, Duard Millett, David’s basketball coach at OHS, stated in an interview with the Oroville Mercury-Register, “He was an outstanding young man. That’s what I admired about Dave.” “He was always smiling and happy-go-lucky, and a very good team man. Everyone loved him. He was also very active in different clubs in school. He wasn’t just an athlete – he was an all around young man.”
Unfortunately, David’s life was brief as he died in November 1995 in Winnipeg at the age of 55. As David had served in the United States Army Reserves for four years and was on active military duty for six months, he received a military burial at Memorial Park Cemetery in Oroville.
|Jana graduated from Oroville High School (OHS) in 1963 and was a member of the Girls Athletic Association, the French Club and the Pep Club. She was president of the youth group at the First Baptist Church and a member of Jobs Daughters, Bethel 55 Oroville.
Following graduation, Jana attended San Francisco State College for one year and then decided to enter the work world and get married. In 1964, she completed Executive Secretary Courses at Moore’s Business College in Sacramento. In 1977, she completed 20 plus units at Butte Community College to qualify to take the California State Real Estate Brokers test. She passed the exam on her first try and became a licensed California Real Estate Broker. She completed many more real state courses throughout her career.
Jana’s professional career started in 1965 at the State of California Departments of Agriculture, Employment and Personnel in Sacramento. She then worked as a Real Estate agent for Ramsey Realty in Oroville, and in 1978 opened Jana Wilson Real Estate, where she operated her own business until 1996. Her career for the next 14 years, was serving Butte County youth as Program Manager, Community Organizer and Coalition Coordinator for the Community Health Alliance of Oroville (CHAO), Butte County Office of Education (BCOE).
Jana’s career in community service began in 1979 when she was the third woman ever elected to the Oroville City Council. After two years, she was appointed Vice-Mayor and chaired several committees including the Public Transportation Committee that brought public bus service to town. In 1981, she became the first woman chairperson of the Sewage Commission of Oroville (SCOR).
In 1983, Jana was elected the first female Mayor of the City of Oroville, making her the first elected woman mayor in Butte County. She served until 1986 when she was re-elected to a second term, but after two years, had to step down due to health problems. During her five years as Mayor, she served as Chair to the Oroville City Redevelopment Agency (RDA) that acquired funding for major additions to Oroville Hospital.
Using the RDA, the city acquired a six million dollar bond that helped fund the construction of a new Police and Fire Facility, buy and renovate the State Theatre, acquire full ownership of the Oroville Airport, and renovate the old fire station into the current City Council Chambers, to name a few.
Giving back to her community has been a major part of Jana’s life in Oroville. Among her contributions are initiating and coordinating Student Government Day whereby OHS students took over all of city government including elected and employee positions. The day culminated with students hosting a live city council meeting. In her capacity at BCOE and as a member of the Sunrise Rotary Club that sponsors the OHS Interact Club, she attended Interact Club meetings and encouraged student members of the importance of having a mission statement. As a result, the club participated in strategic planning and developed a mission statement. This has been a valuable tool and helped Interact maintain its top rating at OHS and in Rotary District 5180, Sacramento.
During her many years of public service, Jana has been honored numerous times including being named a Paul Harris Fellow, receiving the Omaha Woodmen Outstanding Citizen of the Year Award, the Oroville Business and Professional Women’s, “Woman of Achievement Award”, and several Certificates of Appreciation for managing grants that funded Alcohol, Tobacco, other Drugs, and Violence Prevention activities.
Over the years Jana has been a member of the Oroville Soroptimist Club, the OUHSD Discipline Committee, and the Oroville Business and Professional Women’s Club. Currently, she is a member of the YMCA Ehman Trust Fund Investment Committee, the YMCA Board, the Butte County Historical Society, and is president-elect of the Oroville Sunrise Rotary Club.
Jana and her husband of 49 years, Harrel, OHS class of 1961, have two daughters who graduated from OHS, two granddaughters who graduated from LPHS, and a grandson who lives in Sacramento. Jana and Harrel make their home in Oroville.
17 Seniors of the OHS
'52 - '55 Undefeated
|Seventeen members of the 1956 graduating class of Oroville High School are being honored for Distinguished Service to the Oroville Union High School District.
These students played four years of football, 1952-55, having never lost a game! Members of this group are Clyde Berry, Gilbert Bowles, Sonny Brandt, Jack Brereton, Jerry Faunce, Lyle Gross, Dick Hofius, Don Housen, Gary Hunt, Roy Mastelotto, Winford McCracken, Bert Myers, Don Morford, Pete Noyer, John Odekirk, Wilbur Reil and Ray Silver.
This is a highly unique group as they had the same head coach, Johnny Johnson, all four years. The assistant coaches, Herm Stauss and Hugh Harrison were also with them all four years and in 2009, all three coaches were inducted into the Oroville Union High School District Hall of Fame as members of its very first class. An additional tribute to OHS during this period of time saw OHS Principal Chester Nisbet inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2009 along with the three coaches. Joe Felipe, varsity football coach from 1949-54, was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2013. This speaks volumes about the quality of educators who worked with this distinguished group of players.
At the end of the 1955 season, the then San Francisco Examiner newspaper named the team the number one high school football team from Fresno, CA to the Oregon border. The team won Sierra Foothill League (SFL) championships in 1953, 54, and 55 and at one time, owned a 27 game win streak. In the last four games of that 1955 season, the OHS lads outscored their opponents 144-40.
Lyle Gross, Dick Hofius, Win McCracken, and Bert Myers were named to the All-Sierra Foothill League Team as seniors. Lyle Gross and Dick Hofius were awarded scholarships to Stanford University as well as being selected to play in the prestigious North/South Shrine All-Star Game in Los Angeles, CA.
In addition to being outstanding on the gridiron, several of these players were members of the 1955-56 OHS undefeated basketball team that compiled a record on the hardwood of 23-0. Their head coach, Duard Millet, is also a member of the OUHSD Hall of Fame class of 2009. The 1955-56 school year saw OHS winning championships in the then three major sports of football, basketball, and baseball, a unique accomplishment in itself.
A 1969 Oroville Mercury-Register article written by John Soukop, stated, “The team justly placed itself into the annals of Oroville sports history.” In March 2016, the 17 players were honored by the Northern California Sports Association, when they were inducted into its Hall of Fame at their annual ceremony held in Yuba City, CA. Four members of the group attended that event.
Coach John Johnson stated at a 1969 gathering of the group, “It was a hell of a group of kids. We were in a good cycle and it just stayed longer than usual. We were lucky.” At the same event, Principal Chet Nisbett said (tongue in cheek), “A whole generation of Oroville High School students has not learned what it is to lose.”
Dean Andoe, OUHSD Hall of Fame class of 2011, and junior backup quarterback on the 1955 team, learned that seven members of the group, Lyle Gross, Dick Hofius, Don Housen, Winford McCracken, Don Morford, Bert Myers, and Ray Silver are deceased. Dean has managed to locate the 10 living members of the team, several of who plan to attend the induction dinner.