Hall of Fame for 2013

East Alton – Wood River Community High School: Oiler Alumni Hall of Fame / 2013 Induction Class

Meet the 2013 Oiler Alumni Hall of Famers who were formally inducted at the Banquet held in their honor on Saturday, October 19, 2013, in the East Building Courtyard.  They join the Induction Classes of 2009 and 2011 as outstanding alumni who have contributed to their communities and their professions!

Tracy Butler (EAWR Class of 1988)  – Mr. Butler is the President and co-founder of Acropolis Technology Group, which is one of the most respected computer and technology firms in the St. Louis area. He was honored as one of the “Top 100 St. Louisans You Should Know” with his company listed as one of the St. Louis area’s “Winningest Workplaces.” 

Tracy has taken his technology and small business knowledge and has used that in writing and contributing to numerous professional and technical periodicals. Prior to his technology career, Mr. Butler also worked as an engineer with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, serving in areas of design and management in the St. Louis District, and was responsible for maintaining navigable waters on the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers, within the District, as well as flood control.  Tracy has a B.S. in Civil Engineering from SIU-Edwardsville. He is also a participant in IronMan and other triathlon competitions all over the nation. 

Dr. Richard Erzen (EAWR Class of 1946) – Dr. Erzen is a well-respected educator, who devoted his professional career as a teacher, principal, district superintendent, and college professor and administrator. He was the founding President of Lake County Community College, and held professorships at Illinois State and Bradley Universities.  

He also served as a Corporate Head of Worldwide Training and Development for the NCR Corporation. While at EAWR, he was a member of the Chick Summers-led state finals baseball team, and a state finalist in track as a high jumper. He was selected as the area Basketball Player of the Year by the Alton Exchange Club and is a member of the N.E. Missouri State Basketball Hall of Fame. Dr. Erzen holds a M.E. from the University of Missouri and Ed.D from Illinois State University. 

Sherrill Hanks (posthumous) (EAWR Class of 1943) – Coach Hanks is one of the original inductees into the Illinois Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame, by reason of his legendary success at Shurtleff College, Alton High School, Quincy High School, and Quincy University. From 1959, when he started at Alton, to the end of his coaching career at Quincy College, Coach Hanks coached 22 straight seasons with at least 20 wins, and had a career coaching record of 730-258.

Coach Hanks had several state tournament appearances while at Quincy with three state tournament trophies, and 3rd Place in the NAIA National Tournament in 1977 at Quincy University. During his career at Quincy, his teams were always known for their hustle, discipline, and desire to be a winner on and off the court.  While at EAWR, Sherrill starred on the great Chick Summers’ basketball teams. Sherrill saw significant action in the South Pacific during World War ll as a Tech Sergeant for the USMC VMB-423 Bomber Unit.  He earned his Masters at Washington University. 

Dr. Harold (Doc) Hudson (Class of 1940) - Doc Hudson practiced dentistry in the Wood River area for decades and is a fixture in the East Alton - Wood River community. During his long career as a dentist, he also served on the EAWR Board of Education (during the building of the East Building) and served on the staff at Wood River Township Hospital, donating free dental services to underprivileged youth in the community. Dr. Hudson was also an ardent Oiler sports fan and was a great supporter of Oiler athletics.

Doc was an outstanding athlete, playing multiple sports at EAWR, but was so good at football, that he won a football scholarship to Northwestern University, where he played for four years and started at center, snapping the ball to the legendary Otto Graham. Even though he caught the attention of some pro football teams, Doc passed up that opportunity to go to dental school. Dr. Hudson was also a military veteran, where he served as an officer in the US Navy Dental Corps.

Dr. Ashley Knight (Class of 1978) - Ashley has enjoyed a varied career since leaving EAWR.  After graduating from Bradley University at the age of 20, she entered the field of radio broadcasting, at first in Peoria and then landing a job at KSHE Radio in St. Louis where she was an on-air personality.  She moved to Chicago and was a radio personality at WLUP Radio for five years, three of which were on morning drive with Jonathon Brandmeier.  

After her decade in radio, she entered the field of education, at first counseling broadcasting students at Columbia College Chicago while pursuing her master's degree at DePaul University, and ultimately serving as Associate Dean of Students.  Ashley also completed a doctorate in education at National-Louis University, and now serves as the Dean of Student Affairs at Harper College in Palatine.  While at EAWR, Ashley was involved in many activities, including Big Sisters, cheerleading, the Oilerettes, as Senior Class Vice President, and as a member of the Prom Court. 

Dr. Scott Logan (EAWR Class of 1975) – Dr. Logan has enjoyed a very distinguished career in the field of obstetrics and gynecology, currently practicing medicine as a board certified physician with Westmoreland OB/GYN Associates in Lake Forest, Illinois. He is also affiliated with a top-rated hospital, Northwestern Hospital in Lake Forest. 

Dr. Logan has won numerous awards as a physician, including the Top Ten Doctors in 2012 and the Patient’s Choice Award in 2008. His patients laud him for his caring and understanding, and his ability to educate and inform patients. Dr. Logan graduated from University of Illinois Medical School in 1983.

John Messick (EAWR Class of 1955) – A star basketball player at EAWR, John Messick originally attended St. Louis University on a basketball scholarship, but transferred to the University of Illinois where he graduated with B.S. in Aeronautical Engineering. 

Mr. Messick spent a long and distinguished career in the aviation industry as an engineer with various aircraft manufacturers, with his last 33 years at Bell Helicopter / Textron in Fort Worth. At his retirement, Mr. Messick was the Senior Principal Engineer at Bell Helicopter.

Jean (Wolf) Stothert (EAWR Class of 1972) – Mrs. Stothert is the Mayor of Omaha, Nebraska, the 42nd largest city in the U.S. Her recent election to the Mayor’s office was preceded by being elected as an Omaha City Councilman, as well as serving for many years on the Millard School District Board. 

Before her political career, Jean had 12 years of experience as a critical care nurse, and Head Nurse of the Cardiovascular Surgery Department at St. Louis University Hospital. She was a graduate of Seattle Pacific University. While at EAWR, Jean was very involved in activities, such as Student Council and Big Sisters, and was Class Secretary/Treasurer.
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