The Austin High School Alumni and Friends Association, along with Austin High School, would like to announce the 2019 recipients of its Distinguished Alumni Award. This award recognizes graduates of Austin High School for outstanding achievements and contributions to society following graduation. It also promotes positive role models for currently enrolled students in Austin School District #492. The three alumni selected this year are as follows:
Duane Napp, PhD, Class of 1951
Napp, a retired college chemistry professor and IBM engineer, generated numerous patents throughout his career, including with IBM, where he directed and managed many critical projects to assure the introduction of new products. In 1986, he received an invention achievement award from IBM related to work on component self alignment.After retiring from IBM, he also volunteered in numerous ways for Boy Scouts and youth sports, worked for the Digital Equipment Corp. and the National Center for Manufacturing Sciences. He lives in Houston, Texas. His message to students is to “never quit learning, continue to improve your knowledge and education at every opportunity”.
Mier Wolf, Class of 1958
Wolf, a retired attorney for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), has received awards from the U.S. Congress, State of Maryland and other governmental agencies for his achievements, which have involved serving as a legal advisor to grant programs that improved communities throughout the United States and Puerto Rico. He has been an active volunteer throughout his life and served for nine years as mayor for Chevy Chase, Md., where he still resides. His message to students is “our success should be measured as much by our humanity as it is by our careers”.
Dennis Bray, Class of 1973
Bray, of Austin, is an award-winning, retired Austin High School girls hockey coach who served as union president during his 36-year career as a machinist at International Paper in Austin. As a coach, he also coached various levels of boys hockey and softball, took the Austin High girls hockey team to the state tournament three times and has received numerous awards for his leadership, including being inducted in 2016 to the Minnesota Girls Hockey Association’s Hall of Fame. He also has volunteered for various Austin High events and other athletic programs. His message to students is to “consistently give 110%. Work hard! What you lack in ability can be made up with desire, dedication and determination”.
Congratulations to this year’s recipients!