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 Tri-Town News June 24th 2008 
SCS Alumni Association Announces
the 2008 Inductees to the "Wall of Fame"

R. Douglas Sheldon, '59, Chairman of the SCS Alumni Association's Wall of Fame Nominating Committee, announced today that, after many months of research and deliberation, the committee has selected five inductees for the Wall of Fame Class of 2008. The Committee's recommendations were presented to the SCSAA Board of Directors on April 5, 2008 where unanimous support was given.

The Class of 2008 includes a former Justice of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, one of Sidney's legendary teacher/mentors (also an alumnus) and three alumni who have given fully of their lives to community, education, single mothers' and women's issues.

Mr. Sheldon praised the members of the committee for their continuing work and commitment: Terry Dermody, '65, Mary Ann Maynard Cramton, '59, Floyd Fisher '59, Jon DeTemple, '61, Marty Reed, '65, Dennis Porter, '66, Ron Wischhusen, '72, Pat Greene, '53, Karen Cycon Dermody, '63, and Robert Rowlands.

The upcoming class brings the Wall of Fame to a total of 20 members ranging in fields of public school and higher education (teachers, supervisors and professors), journalism, law, business, medicine, military, invention and public service. The Inductees for the Wall of Fame Class of 2008 include four women, making the Wall a collection of eight women and twelve men and bringing to the Wall of Fame the kind of diversity the committee set out to achieve at its first meeting in 2004.

The Wall of Fame Ceremony will take place at the All Class Reunion Luncheon, July 20, 2008. Luncheon tickets are $13. The luncheon registration form can be found on the SCSAA website: www.sidneyalumni.org.

At the same luncheon there will be a raffle ticket drawing for the deed to a Marriott Vacation Resort Time Share Property in Newport Beach, Ca, donated by Dick Germond '63 to both raise money for SCSAA and to establish the Kristina T. Germond Memorial Scholarship to be given to a graduating senior intending to attend college and enter the teaching profession. Raffle tickets may also be purchased on the SCSAA website: www.sidneyalumni.org.

The 2008 inductees of the Wall of Fame for Distinguished Alumni and Educators are:

Riley Henry Heath (1907) "was as firm in his friendships as he was in his judicial opinions during his long service on the Supreme Court bench." The Binghamton Sun of September 26, 1951 went on to describe his career in this way. "On the bench he won the respect of litigants and attorneys alike through his fairness and clear-cut decisions… and his decisions stood up. Outspoken and frank, he impressed associates on and off the bench as a man who did his own thinking."

Riley Heath was born in 1889 in Sanitaria Springs, New York and in 1892 his family moved to 25 Bridge Street in Sidney. He was successful in high school, excelling in his studies and playing on football team. He graduated from Sidney High School in 1907 and worked his way through Cornell and graduated in 1912 with a law degree. He became associated with a law firm in Ithaca and soon became a partner.

In the 1920's Mr. Heath pursued a political career and also formed his own law firm. In 1928, he returned to Sidney where he delivered an address in which he spoke "feelingly of his pride in the progress of Sidney". Throughout his career, he maintained his professional and personal connections in the Sidney area.

He was elected a Supreme Court Justice from the Sixth Judicial District, taking the bench on January 1, 1931. In 1936 Judge Heath was mentioned as a possible candidate for governor but he refused to permit his name to be entered, saying that he preferred to remain a trial justice.

He retired early from the bench in Tompkins County in 1943 and practiced trial law for several years in Binghamton. In 1948, his name was put forth once more as Supreme Court Justice from Broome County. His term began on January 1, 1949. However, because of failing health, he was compelled to resign in 1950. He died in 1951.

A life long friend, Charles C. Flaesch, President Emeritus of the Otsego County Bar Association, remembered Riley Heath in this way. "I became acquainted with Riley Heath during his high school days at Sidney and was much impressed with the young man. On the bench he was alert, fair-minded, and listened to many drawn out arguments of counsel without any interruption. He became a great favorite with all the trial lawyers in the district and I formed affection for him bordering upon that of a brother."

Mr. Heath's family members have especially noted his strong patriotism, his integrity, his enthusiasm for the Brooklyn Dodgers, his hearty, commanding, larger-than-life presence, and his strong emphasis on family pride, education and ethical behavior.


Mary Scofield Ruland (1908) earned both her bachelor's and master's degrees from Syracuse University, where she was also elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She retired in 1961 after teaching Latin for 40 years, all in New York State and 33 of those years in Sidney Central School (1928-61).

A teacher of World History, she volunteered to teach Latin and literally brought it back to life. Not only did her students learn Latin and Roman History but also they experienced first hand an authentic Roman banquet that was the culmination of each year's studies.

During her tenure at SCS, she started the Student Council and was its advisor for many years counseling many would-be leaders along the way. She founded the foreign student exchange programs with the American Field Service, which resulted in Sidney students going to Europe in 1958. Mrs. Ruland also served as the advisor to the National Honor Society.

In 1959, The Reflector was dedicated to Mrs. Ruland and she was applauded for "…her great enthusiasm, personal interest, undivided attention, and understanding of the students. She has encouraged them to obtain high goals in school. Through her example they have acquired standards which they will carry with them throughout their future years".

During her tenure, she was also recognized by both the Sidney Chamber of Commerce and the Sidney Rotary Club for excellence in teaching and devotion to Sidney's students.

Indeed comments from former students abound with memories of her use of hands on education and her dedication to provide each student with the tools to carry them through life and the challenge to work just a bit harder. She is characterized by all as a teacher one would never forget.

One of her students wrote "Mrs. Ruland was a wonderful teacher in the classroom, earning the immediate respect of her students through her demeanor of sophistication, quick wit and obvious respect for them. She is at the top of the list of teachers I credit to this day for teaching important lessons about living life-about respect, honesty, accountability, and the positive return one can achieve through hard work."


Nancy Sue Burns (1956) has dedicated her life to service to the Sidney community. Nancy was born in Bainbridge, NY, but grew up in Sidney graduating in 1956. She went on to Keuka College graduating in 1960 with her bachelor's degree.

Nancy is a true champion at overcoming the obstacles that life presents. At age seven, she contracted polio that left her with some paralysis. She raised three daughters as a single mom for several years. Nancy focused on a career path in journalism at a time when women's roles were largely restricted. In each instance she has not only persevered but also excelled.

Nancy's mentor was her father and former Sidney Chamber of Commerce secretary, Larry Haynes. While serving as editor of the Tri-Town-News for over thirty years, she also served on the Sidney Chamber of Commerce as a six term director, as well as a long term Chamber of Commerce membership chairman and Vision 21 Quality of Life Pride subcommittee chairman. Formerly she served on the early Best Committee, a local committee organized to assist people in preparing for interviews and to receive job training.

She has also been active in the Sidney School PTO where she served as President as well as being involved in the Sidney Business and Professional Women's Club. Nancy has been a Sunday school teacher for many years and also volunteered for the Girl Scouts as a Brownie Scout Leader.

In 2002, Nancy Sue was selected as Sidney's Citizen of the Year. The program from that event describes Nancy as showing "character, class, compassion, commitment, and contagious sense of excitement about promoting her community and the talents of the people in it". Nancy "…is a forward thinker whose interaction with people now sows the seeds for more zealous, considerate citizens of the years to come."

Long time colleague and friend, Ed Roelle wrote… "Her fierce love for her family, her church and her community is visible at all times. I can't tell you how many times we sat down together to discuss a community problem and what we could do about it. I can truly say she is a caring person and a joy to be around."


Suzanne E. Wade, Ph.D. (1963) earned her B.A. at SUNY Albany in 1967 and her Master's from there in 1969. As a single mother, she was determined to get a higher education so that she could teach at the university level.

After gaining teaching experience working with at risk children in upstate New York and New York City, Suzanne was accepted at the College of Education at Harvard University. During her studies, she spent time teaching reading to children with disabilities in the Philippines and then China. After completing her Doctorate in Education from Harvard in 1984, she moved west to the University of Utah, where she was a Professor in the College of Education until her untimely death in 2007.

She was a nationally recognized scholar in reading and literacy, publishing many books and articles, who made a significant impact in the lives of children and families in Utah and across the nation. She received both the Research and Teaching Awards from the College of Education in 1999 and was awarded the University of Utah's highest teaching honor, The Distinguished Teaching Award.

Suzanne never lost her identification with single mothers hoping to better their circumstances by furthering their education and acting as a mentor to young women at the University. Suzanne and her husband, Alan McLaren, endowed a scholarship to support a single parent enrolled as a student at the University of Utah. The scholarship is specifically directed toward young women who are on the same path Suzanne once traveled.

Suzanne is remembered by friends and colleagues as someone who had an ability to "…create community. She had a way of bringing a diverse group of people and ideas together in ways that were always respectful. She did this with her family, her students and her colleagues."

One of her classmates commented… "Suzanne's career was about teaching and teacher education, but her life was about friends and family. To say that she was always cheerful, always smiling, frequently giggling would probably be inaccurate, yet that is how everyone remembers her: the Harvard doctor with the giggle. She has enriched the lives of so many of us, with her compassion, her friendship, her strength, and her love".


Brenda Wrigley (1972) was born and raised in Sidney. She graduated from the University of Missouri in 1975 with a Bachelor of Science in Broadcast Journalism. While serving as the Marketing Communications Manager for the Raymond Corporation in Greene, NY, she completed a master's from Syracuse University and after leaving Raymond, earned a Ph.D. from the nationally renowned Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in Mass Communications.

Brenda began her career working as a radio news announcer for WENE/WMRV in Endicott. She soon moved to the advertising side and started selling air time, ultimately becoming the top salesperson each year. She worked in radio and television ad sales for 14 years.

After obtaining her Ph.D. at Syracuse University, Brenda became an associate professor at Michigan State University. In 2004, Brenda returned to Syracuse University and currently teaches Public Relations in the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.

In support of Dr. Wrigley's nomination for induction, David Rubin, Dean of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications wrote, "Professor Wrigley is a key member of our nationally-recognized Department of Public Relations in the Newhouse School. Not only is she one of our outstanding teachers, she is also a nationally recognized scholar in public relations research."

"She is particularly well known for her pioneering work on gender in public relations, particularly the glass ceiling that prevents women from occupying the top positions in the field. I am familiar with the range and quality of public relations faculty members across the country. It is a relatively small field. I can say with confidence that Professor Wrigley has a strong national reputation and that she is among the top twenty educators in her field".

Professor Wrigley co-authored the book: The Gender Challenge to Media: Diverse Voices from the Field as well as many research papers at both national and international seminars. In 2006 she received the Meredith Teaching Recognition Award at Syracuse University.

As Printed in the Tri-Town Newspaper