Since 2008, twenty-four graduates of “Southern Area schools” have been bestowed the recognition of being a Distinguished Alumnus. Three of these graduates were recently inducted in a ceremony held before present-day, Southern Columbia Area students and staff. The Distinguished Alumnus Award was established to honor a graduate of Southern Columbia Area High School or any former high school that formed the Southern Columbia Area District. Recipients are individuals who have achieved success in their field of endeavor and/or who have had a positive influence on the students and community of Southern Columbia Area. Congratulations are extended to this year’s class of Distinguished Alumnus, Dr. Kay Huber, Catawissa High School Class of 1959, Mr.Rick Steele, SCAHS Class of 1974, and Mr. Tim Vought, SCAHS, Class of 1987! Listed below are highlights of their respective careers. Complete biographical profiles will be posted on the Distinguished Alumnus page of this website.
The Distinguished Alumnus Class of 2018 pose for a photo after their induction ceremony. Pictured are Kay Huber, Rick Steele and Tim Vought. Congratulations!
Kay Huber
Kay was nominated for the Distinguished Alumni Award for “her life-long devotion to the nursing profession and the teaching of nursing.”  Kay is a 1959 graduate of Catawissa High School. She devoted her post-high school years to the study of nursing education, graduating from Wilkes College and Polyclinic Hospital School of Nursing, receiving a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Pennsylvania, and a Doctorate in Education for Penn State University. She has used her educational background and passion for health care to inspire others pursing nursing careers as well as to provide care to her patients. Kay has been on the board of the former Pennsylvania Nurses’ Association of Pennsylvania, has presented numerous continuing education programs for both professional and lay persons, and was the Chairperson of the board of the Nursing Foundation of Pennsylvania, the group responsible for constructing the Pennsylvania Center for Nursing. Since March 2015, Kay has been the sole provider at the Beacon Clinic for Health and Hope, a free clinic in Harrisburg for the uninsured and underinsured.
Richard D. Steele
Rick was nominated for the Distinguished Alumnus Award due to his “lifelong work in the Juvenile Justice system of Pennsylvania and for his tireless volunteer efforts to the Southern Columbia Community.” Rick graduated from Southern Columbia Area High School in 1974 and went on to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Pyschology from Gettysburg College and a Master of Science in Administration of Justice from Shippensburg University. Rick launched his career in the juvenile justice department in 1978 as a casefinder rising to his current position of Executive Director of the Juvenile Court Judges’ Commission. In this role Rick is empowered to advise courts concerning the proper care of delinquent and dependent children, establishing administrative standards for juvenile courts. Rich also serves as the primary liaison between the juvenile courts and the legislature.
Timothy Vought
Tim was nominated as a Distinguished Alumnus based on his “countless hours of volunteer service to his community and distinguished service to country.” Tim is a 1987 graduate of Southern Columbia Area High School and enlisted in the United States Army in July of that year. Tim’s military service spanned 21 years and included assignments in Iraq, Germany and throughout Africa and Asia. Notable assignments including service in Operation Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom and providing personal security for the Supreme Allied Commander of Europe. Tim retired from active military service in 2008 with the rank of First Sergeant of the 11th MP Brigade and with many awards and decorations bestowed him, including the Meritorious Service Medal. Tim’s volunteerism includes service as a youth coach, Scout Master, and member of the Southern Columbia Area Board of Education. Today he manages his family’s coal businesses, promoting the use of anthracite coal while advocating environmental stewardship by leading efforts to reclaim land strip mined for coal and supporting clean coal burning practices.