Point Loma High to hold 90th Anniversary Gala, will revive the school’s hall of fame
by SCOTT HOPKINS
Published - 07/24/15 - 02:42 PM | 4657 views | 0 0 comments | 31 31 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Pointer alum Don Larsen, who pitched a perfect game in the 1956 World Series, returned to visit his alma mater several years ago.
Pointer alum Don Larsen, who pitched a perfect game in the 1956 World Series, returned to visit his alma mater several years ago.
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An upcoming 90th Anniversary Gala celebration of Point Loma High School's history will coincide with the induction of newly elected members of a revived hall of fame that plans to add new alumni annually.

The Peninsula's only public high school opened its doors on Sept. 22, 1925 to 386 students in grades 7-12 and a staff of 30 teachers under the leadership of Principal Pete Ross. It is San Diego's third-oldest high school.

Today's campus, overseen by Principal Hans Becker, serves a student body of 2,000 with about 125 teachers, staff members and numerous volunteers.

The school has presented diplomas to tens of thousands of graduates, and many of them have sent children, grandchildren and even great-grandchildren to the Chatsworth Boulevard campus – perhaps one reason why so many alumni hold the school in such esteem and proudly proclaim its motto: "Once a Pointer, Always a Pointer!"

Many of those alumni along with current and former staff members and their families will gather to renew revered friendships, share laughter and honor their alma mater in a festive evening of food, music and nostalgia on Oct. 24 at the San Diego Hilton Resort & Spa, 1775 East Mission Bay Drive.

Heading the event are co-chairs Maria Virissimo-Gibson and Dinisa Valadao. They are assisted by Volunteer chair Andrea Justus and Auction co-chairs Paula Cohen and Toni Curtis.

The event's stated goal is "to raise $50,000 to support our school initiatives and continue to provide the best education possible for our students."

Event tickets are $85 each until the end of September. They can be purchased at pointlomahighschool90thgala.mydagsite.com.

Also on the website, patrons can purchase tables for 10, ranging from $1,000 to $1,500. These can include coaches and former athletes in a "Sports Package" for $1,250.

Event sponsorships are also available, ranging from $250 to $5,000 that include escalating benefits. 

Alumni and community members may also purchase event tickets to sponsor PLHS teachers or make donations of any monetary amount at the website.

Hall of fame

One highlight of the evening will be the induction of the newest members of the Point Loma High School Alumni Hall of Fame.

The hall of fame was begun about 15 years ago and remained dormant until now. Alumni director Kim Jessop Moore identified nine persons who have been inducted to date.  They include:

Civic leaders, athletes and philanthropists Malin Burnham and Peter Peckham, artists Suzy Spafford and Steven Correia, baseball's Don Larsen, sailing's Lowell North, actress Marion Ross, film editor Joe Hutshing and banker John Rebelo.

Information on the hall of fame, including all rules and material needed for nominations, is on the alumni website at www.plhsalumni.org.

Nominees must have graduated from PLHS at least 10 years ago and have achieved prominence in their chosen field locally, nationally or internationally who will inspire future students and alumni.

Categories include Academics, Athletics, Arts/Entertainment, Professional/Military, Philanthropy/Humanitarian and Science/Medicine.

Nomination packets must include all required materials and are due July 31.

On Aug. 10, a list of candidates will be posted at www.plhsalumni.wix.com/Fame and sent to everyone on the Alumni News e-mail list.

By Aug. 24, people may submit a "statement of support" for nominated candidates. The 500-word maximum endorsement will be considered in the selection process.

In mid-Sept. newly elected inductees will be notified by certified mail and the list posted online.

Moore is also preparing a timeline of the school's 90-year history for the gala. Any significant events alums feel should be included can be sent to her at pointers@plhsalumni.org.

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