I'll keep it simple. Mr. Murray taught me the art of writing the English language, a gift that has blessed every aspect of my life. George Buckingham, '72

Cliff Matousek/ Allan Gray Inspiration to 1972 Grad
It was my sophomore year and I had Mr. Matousek and Mr. Gray for Math classes. They taught us math and basic computer programming skills using the old teletype machines and paper tape for storage. Quite hilarious (from a technology perspective) now that I think about it compared to where we are today. I liked the classes and it was quite enjoyable as well. I always wanted to be a Dentist, so my first year at college I started taking all the pre-med science courses and failed miserably. My sophomore year, I switched to Accounting and lulled myself into a coma with that. Scratching my head after two years trying to decide what to do with my life, I recalled those math and programming classes taught by Mr. Matousek and Mr. Gray. I enrolled in the program at college and started taking computer science classes and loved it! I graduated with a Master’s degree from the University of Oregon, went into the field and never looked back. I am currently a Vice President and Chief Information Officer for a publicly traded software company (, and I still live in beautiful Portland. They don’t know it, but Mr. Matousek and Mr. Gray were a real inspiration to me with their classes and had a direct impact on my career choices and successes. Thank you both! Scott Fenton ‘72

Mr. Karl Meiner, Language Arts
I cannot express exactly how much Mr. Karl Meiner helped shape me into the individual I am today. When I was a young freshman, roaming the halls of Wilson, I was elated to find a teacher with the same energy level that I possessed. Karl was a student teacher in my freshman English class, which was taught by another extremely influential man, Tim Harden. I remember reading The Hobbit and finding that the stories adventurous spirit was reflected in my own high school experience. This was in part because Karl helped to open my eyes to the joy of reading. Karl never took days off. He constantly devoted his time to his students and would work to develop engaging curriculum that students with “high energy”, like myself, appreciated. He made teaching his passion and I discovered that I too wanted to instill that excitement into young minds. Freshman year ended in a flash and I was continuing on my journey towards graduation. When I reached my senior year, I remember requesting Karl as my English teacher. Fortunately for me I ended up in Karl’s class and was reminded once again of the many reasons I had thought about teaching as a career. Weather he was teaching with fire, or taking the class outside to read in the sun, Karl always made me look forward to going to class. The best thing about Karl was the fact that he truly cared about his students. He committed himself to our education and he worked hard to establish one on one relationships with us all. I still consider Karl a friend and an inspiration. He goes down in Wilson High School history as the finest, most caring teacher that I ever had. In his honor I write this letter. Karl helped me to become a grown man and his dedication pushed me to discover my own talents. It is because of Karl that I now teach today. Mason Wright, Class of 2001

Clifford Matousek, Choir Director
Thank you, Mr. Matousek. I really liked being in the choir under your direction. Besides liking it so much, your high performance standards and specific techniques helped when I went on to major in music at Willamette. I'm sure that you enhanced the enjoyment of music for many students and that it was then shared with their families. Best wishes, Mary Sue (Gellatly) Short, Class of 1960

Mr. Fred Burton, English
The first day of English class--must have been 1960--Mr. Fred Burton was new to the school. My friend Donna Paullin and I speculated on who would come through the door and what kind of a teacher he would be. My recollection is that he was sort of short with a bit of a high voice. We immediately dubbed him (between ourselves) "Freddie Burton." Mr. Burton was the best English teacher--probably the best teacher--I ever had. He pushed me to be my best and saw in me the potential to write well. He saw through the timid, shy person I seemed to be to who I really was. I believe it is in great part thanks to Mr. Burton that today I edit and publish my own newsletter, and do so with skill and confidence. So, Mr. Burton, if you are out there, Thank You!!! Carol A. Ranney, Class of 1963

Norm Sipple, Physics
Norm Sipple was my instructor for Physics when I was a senior, but more importantly he became a mentor and a friend of many years standing. I had signed up to take the P.S.S.C. Physics partly because some pretty bright students thought it was better than the classical course. I don't remember what PSSC stands for, but it was an alternative curriculum taught from a set of binders that looked like Schaum's college outline paperback books.

The course was avant garde, in that the lab emphasis was observation-based and the labs were often done ahead of classroom presentation of the material. That was really stimulating, and caused me to make some career and education decisions before I went to college. I knew I was headed for college, but my motivation was relatively low going into my senior year.

There was something in the mutual affability and camaraderie of my getting to know Mr. Sipple that provided me with an inspiration to really get going with my classes, and to raise my GPA so I had more options for college. I knew I had an uphill challenge, but if my memory is at all accurate, I managed to raise my average from something like a 2.25 to more like a 2.75 or 2.80 in that senior year.

You might recall that Norm was a short-wave radio operator with the call sign K7AUB, and with that hobby, he was a customer at an electronics store where I had a part-time job. During the entire year I was in his class, I can say that there was no favoritism from his being a customer, or that he ever acknowledged that relationship in front of the class. It was simply and professionally "teacher and student" in the classroom, but at the store, it was friend-to-friend, peer-to-peer. He made me feel valued in an entirely new way.

During that year, it was the encouragement that I received and that was so well timed, that made a lasting difference. I was equally interested in architecture and engineering, but I was inspired toward engineering by the balance of analysis over art. After 25 years of design and 12 years of management, I left the high tech corporate world and used some of the same inspiration to take a position in construction management with Habitat for Humanity. The architecture side of my interests had received its day. And the analysis from engineering was put to work making Habitat houses better, stronger, more economical, more consistently constructed and with processes easier to teach to our volunteers. I count Norm Sipple as one of the best mentors a young man could have, and I write this to even further demonstrate the appreciation I tried to share with him in the several chance and planned visits we enjoyed.

At his 50th wedding anniversary, in about 1996, I had the chance to tell Norm and his wife about the role he had played. At his memorial service I mentioned that when a ham radio contact was ended, the polite Morse code or verbal signoff was the shorthand "73." In signing off with a good friend or a loved one, the 73 was replaced with the characters "88." So, my parting comment was to say, "88, good friend." Bill Gellatly, Class of 1961

Bernie Carlson, Chemistry
I would like to make a tribute to Bernie Carlson, my chemistry teacher both at Jackson High School and then again at Wilson. Mr. Carlson was really the first teacher who treated the students more like adults than kids. Now that I have my own kids, I realize how difficult it must have been to let go the reins a little. Interestingly enough, most of the students rose to the occasion and behaved better in his class than in others. On an academic note, Mr. Carlson certainly didn't have the easiest subject to teach. I will always remember the end of the year in Advanced Chem and he was passing out awards to everyone. Most were getting awards for things like knowing the periodic table the best and most successful experiments, etc. When he got around to me, he handed me my certificate and it said, "for the best smile". Well, the fact that I got the smile award when everyone else got an academic award made it pretty clear that Mr. Carlson was less than enamored with my chemistry skills, but had still found something positive to say. I'll bet he would be surprised to learn that I chose science as a profession! Thanks for always trying to look on the bright side, Mr. Carlson. Lauri (Brown) Sadorus, Class of 1984

Kathy Anderson, English
My name is Anna Bauer and I'd like to give a tribute to a Wilson teacher. The teacher I want to talk about is Kathy Anderson. She is my English teacher and I really like her because she's incredibly sweet. She is a mainstream teacher and I'm in Special Ed student. She calls me "sweetie" and I like that. She is helpful and patient.

I like the school work and my favorite assignment is vocabulary. When I have troubles on my school work, she helps me. She's very understanding when she speaks to the class and she's cheery. I say "hi" to her when I see her in the hall. I come into her room outside of school time and just say "hi" to her sometimes. I feel really close and comfortable around Ms. Anderson. I think she is just warm hearted. I gave her candy for being a good teacher with flexible thinking.

In the past I had some teachers that were rigid, not very helpful, and impatient. One time I was asking for help because I misunderstood something, but the teacher yelled at me. Those teachers spoke to me impatiently and harshly. I don't like that tone of voice. Sometimes I even cry. The biggest problem is I don't have the guts to ask for help, I don't learn well because I am afraid they would snap at me and become impatient. Some students are afraid of those teachers, especially with Special needs issues like me. It's the tone of voice and the impatience that upset me.

Ms. Anderson is very patient when she helps me and her tone of voice is calm. I learn more that way and I get better grades. Students with special needs tend to ask for a lot. I think asking for help is really wise. Ms. Anderson and I made a relationship and became friends. She understands my special needs and she's there to teach and help students when they need hints. I like it when the teacher gives me positive feedback. When I walk into her room, I say " Hi" and when I leave I say " Take care ". She smiles at me and I wave at her and it makes me feel good all day.

I want to say that Ms. Anderson is my favorite teacher in the whole school and thank you Ms. Anderson for all your help and your support. Anna Bauer, Sophomore, Class of 2009

Mr. Jim MacDicken
I cannot say enough great things about Mr. MacDicken. He was an inspirational teacher who truly loved being with high school students. I was in his history, sociology, and psychology classes. He took the time to get know each of us individually-you felt important when you were in his class. His classes were engaging and meaningful. He was not only a wonderful teacher but an equally talented coach who made a tremendous difference in many students' lives. Mary Groppo Esterline, Class of 1984

Wilson Teachers
Wow! We can't believe that it has been 50 years since we attended Wilson High. The administrators, teachers and coaches were the best and paved the foundation for many of us who attended college and for those students that choose other fields of employment. Mr. Keuscher, Mr. Proppe, Miss Cimino, Mr. Conlon, Mr. Ellmers, Mr. Gray, Mr. Matousek, Mr. Miller, Mr. Read, Mr. Stanton, Mr. Sweet, Mr. Stevenson, Mr. Voll, Mr. Webster, Mr. Witty and many other teachers and coaches that played such an important part in our early development. George Held '58 & Susan Freed-Held '60

Both my husband and I graduated from Grant, and Mr. Keuscher and I worked in the building before Wilson opened 50 yrs. ago! I filled the position of Student Store Manager and Bookkeeper. It has been a wonderful memory. Mrs. Whitted, the Dean of Girls, was my neighbor in the N.E. district prior to each of us moving to Raleigh Hills eventually and being neighbors again. My son, Gary, attended Wilson, played football for Bob Sweet, basketball for Bob Webster, track 440 runner, and was Sophomore Class President. Gary retired from the Air Force as a pilot in the Viet Nam war, flew for America West and again retired when the age limit applied. He is now living in Scottsdale, Arizona. Do tell anyone in my decade of participation at Wilson that I often think of the "Old Days". What pleasant memories! Elizabeth Stocks, 1958 Alumni Parent

Merle Lotz, Choir
Merle Lotz was not just a choir teacher, but a REASON to come to school every day. He shared his passion for music and created the most phenomenal harmonies and friendships ever. It was exciting to be a part of the choir and ensemble during my 4 years at Wilson in the late 60s. Today Merle continues to be a personal friend of my family. I cannot imagine my high school years without Merle. He touched the lives of so many with his gifts of song and friendship. Here's to YOU, Mr. Merle Lotz- you continue to rock and we loved you and still love you!!!! Thanks for making such an awesome difference in who I am. As a late-deafened adult, my tunes sound different, but I will always carry a song in my heart, thanks to "Merle Lotz". With admiration, Sally Rudnick Class of 1970

Mr. Pierce, English
I had Mr. Pierce for junior English, and he always asked us to send him a postcard with a "yes" or "no" as to whether learning syntax, roots and prefixes, etc… helped in our future lives. Well, as an editor of books and magazines at publishing companies in Manhattan, Berkeley, and now Portland, my postcard would definitely say "YES!!!" Thanks, Mr. Pierce. Kim Koch, Class of 1982

Mrs. Enny Schultz
The class of 1961 held our 45th Class Reunion over this past weekend (October 14th, '06). We had a wonderful time meeting with our old friends and classmates and recalling those "good old days" spent at Wilson High!. Our class would like to speak out for Mrs. Enny Schultz! For many of us, she was "our favorite teacher of all time"! She was the best and we all send our sincere best wishes to her today! Thank you Mrs. Enny Schultz - you were and are the best! Members of Class of 1961

Ron Zaraza, Physics
We would like to pay tribute to a most outstanding Physics teacher at Wilson: Ron Zaraza. He clearly has a passion for his students and a dedication to teaching Physics. His love of science, along with his high level of expertise from 30 + years of teaching, is intellectually stimulating and exciting for students. As a senior at Wilson, our son is currently taking Physics at Lewis and Clark College, and has been more than prepared for this college level course. We are so saddened by his life-threatening illness and long hospitalization. We wish him relief from pain and as much good health as possible. We thank you, Ron Zaraza, for being such an inspiration for our son who is seriously considering pursuing Physics in college. Bruce and Susan Neben, parents of Abraham Neben, Class of 2007

Wonderful Teachers
Mr. Horton
Mr. Poeping
Mr. Hood
Mr. Meinicke
Mr. Stahlings
Ms. Ashley
Mrs. Bartel
Mr. Matousek
Mr. Lotz
Mrs. Meihoff

Special thanks to a few wonderful teachers who stand out in my memories of WHS. Thank you for sharing your wisdom and knowledge with your students. Lesley Veltman Glasgow, Class of 1964

Stanley Stanton, Football Coach
I never knew Mr. Stanton at Wilson, but got acquainted with him in 1989 when we purchased boats that were alike except for color, and moored them at the same moorage on the Columbia River. It was a joy to get to know Mr. Stanton. He had great character which I'm sure he imparted to his students and athletes and friends. He was a very giving individual and would give you the shirt off his back if you needed it. It was fun to just hang out with him. He truly loved his boat and got many years of enjoyment out of cruising on our beautiful river. Gloria (Gradasoff) Galvin, Class of 1969

Stan Stanton, Kind, Understanding, Tough-As-Nails Teacher

Stan Stanton was a man's man. A former marine and built like he could take on 10 students with one hand tied behind his back. But he was a kind, understanding, fair, encourging, tough-as-nails teacher and only wanted the best for his students. My buddy Mike S. and I had a great relationship with him. Even to the point where Mr. Stanton took us out on his boat and taught us how to water ski. That's above the call of teacher-duty. And can you remember where you were when you heard that President Kennedy was shot???... I was at lunch and immediately went to my 'best friend' teacher, Mr. Stanton, because I knew He would have an answer to this shocking news. But he had left his class and went to the teachers lounge where I found him in tears. As I was. He was the best. He made my whole high school experience worth the four years I spent at Wilson. My only regret is that I never went back to see him after graduation. I lost out on the rest of his life experiences. I could have used his advice. He will be with me till the day I leave this life. Webb M. Goetze, Class of 1964

Mrs. Jean Chisholm, Biology and Biology II
Mrs. Chisholm was an amazing teacher! Anyone who ever took a class from her will remember her level of involvement with her subject as well as with her students. She was nurturing and inspiring. Thank you, Mrs. Chisholm for all you did for us! Love, Kathy Sullivan, Class of 1972

Merle Lotz, Choir Director
I was just at the choir reunion tonight and had a blast!! I wish to thank Merle and Pat Lotz for their hospitality at their house and it was SO much fun to see everyone and I even picked up a 50th Wilson shirt!!- way cool!! I would like to honor Merle as choir was such an important part of my life at Wilson. I was part of the european choir (I guess or so I was told that we were the only european choir) and our class of 72 was the best represented there tonight!! I enjoyed seeing Merle play for the Oregon Symphony for many years and would always tell those around me that he was my choir director. I have kept many of my friends from those years and Merle was instrumental in having such a talented group. I remember our many concerts through out Portland during our fundraising days. Thank you Merle for all of those great memories!! Jayne Bailey, Class of 1972

Mr. Murray and Mrs. Dodge
I'd like to offer a tribute to several inspirational teachers, specifically Mr. Murray who showed remarkable respect by addressing students in his classes as Mr. XXX and Miss YYY and Mrs. Dodge who never ceased to encourage students to strive for big goals and who definitely gave me an opportunity to grow and take chances. Regards, David Altman, Class of 1969

George Penk, Chemistry
After three semesters at Willamette University, I still have not found a professor that rivals George Penk. While it's true that I may never know all the professors on campus, our school is small enough that I have met, or heard about enough professors to know that he will probably always be my favorite teacher. While his Advanced Chemistry class may not be AP driven, I can honestly say that in the three semesters I've taken Chemistry (both Intro classes and one Organic) there's been something taught or talked about, that I've already learned because of his class. Beyond that, his classes were always on the border of fun and learning-mixing Chemistry puns and personal anecdotes with lessons always made them more enjoyable and something to look forward to. It may not have been the lesson that was looked forward to (a lot of the material was rather hard) but he always made it a little more fun and easier to pay attention and learn. His down to earth teaching style made harder concepts easier to grasp and he never went on before making sure we at least had some kind of handle on what we were doing.

Even more so than this, Penk was always friendly and interested in what was going on in our own lives. He wanted to hear about how our college process was going, how the cross country meet had gone last weekend and how we were doing under the weight of everything that was thrown upon us(especially as seniors). But also he related to us in such a way that it wasn't like talking to any other teacher about our lives and what was going on in theirs-the teacher-student relationship was there but it was as though it we were college students-much older and on a similar playing field. We talked of the world and it's going ons, in addition to what was happening at Wilson that day, week or month.

It is honestly much harder to describe Penk than I thought..It is something to be experienced, his charm, warmth and compassion for others, while being an awesome and fantastic Chemistry teacher. He will always be my favorite teacher and my friend, even though I may not be able to come back and see him as often as I would like. Suzanne Snell, Class of 2006

Ron Zaraza, Physics
The impact that one teacher, in this case Ron Zaraza, can have on a person's life is incalculable. He saw potential in me where I saw none, and refused to let me fail as hard as I tried. By not only making his classes fun and zany and the subject matter fascinating, but also making his students feel like an important part of something special, he created within his students not just a desire to learn, but to excel. Twenty years after the fact, I can recall vividly events and lessons that he emblazoned on my mind. Amazingly enough, I was just hired for a coveted position that I never should have gotten based on experience, but based on knowledge that Mr. Zaraza instilled in me two decades ago. So profound is the significance of this iconic educator that I am fairly certain that, unbeknownst to the general scientific and mathematic community at large, the origin of the Cartesian Coordinate System remains fixed somewhere within the hallowed halls of Wilson High School to this day. Roger "What If?" Penn, Class of 1986

Wilson Teachers Linda Graves (English)
Susan Parker (Photography)
Susan Theissen (Ceramics)
Cora Crossen (Math)
Eleanor Flores (Spanish)
Kathy Diamond (English)
Tammy O'Neill (Senior English)
Manuel Espinoza (Spanish)
Joanna Coleman (Spanish)
Ms. York (Health)
Ms. Potestio (Economics/Political Science)

My name is Thamer Khan I am a senior at Wilson and I would like to send a tribute to Linda Graves(English), Susan Parker (Photography), Susan Theissen (Ceramics), Cora Crossen (Math), Eleanor Flores (Spanish), Kathy Diamond (English), Tammy O'Neill (Senior English), Manuel Espinoza (Spanish 1-2), Joanna Coleman (Spanish), Ms. York (Health) and Ms. Potestio (Economics/Political Science). First of all the teachers that I listed are the greatest teachers of all because they made me feel at home, made it feel like this was my home and I don't want to leave it, because of their kindness and their warmth in their hearts. They always know to make me feel better when I'm down. In all they bring happiness in my life. They are like family to me, they are really kind at heart and really cool, and I don't know how to explain anymore but, in all they have changed my life and made me into a better person. Thamer Khan, Class of 2007

Becky Thompson, Choir Director
Without a doubt, the one Wilson teacher who made the biggest difference in my life was Becky Thompson, our choir director. Five days a week, she taught a zero-period ensemble class and was at the school before seven o'clock. Then, in first-period, she directed a choir which consisted of nearly 100 teenagers, many of which were very sleepy and often very unruly. Once they left, she had her Freshman girls choir. And then, at lunch, she alternated directing a men's ensemble and a woman's chorus. She spent countless afternoons and evenings working as the music director each spring for the school's annual musical. She inspired me, she pushed me to the very limit of my singing abilities. And she genuinely cared about her students. Becky Thompson was a tremendous asset to Wilson High School. My future children should be so lucky as to have a teacher like her! Troy Pickard, Class of 2000

Linda Graves, Home Economics
I would like to thank Linda Graves for the kindness and support she gave me during my years at Wilson (1984-1987). After transferring from a very small school, Wilson was tremendously overwhelming. Mrs. Graves (can I call her Linda now that I am an adult ?!) recognized this and went out of her way to make me feel at home and helped me find my way.

At the time she taught 'home ec' oriented classes and whatever she taught, I took. Her warmth gave me strength and courage to - not only get through my awkward teen years - but to honor my slightly offbeat creative spirit. I credit my life's creative journey- which has been rich with art, architecture, dance and travel to Linda. Without her encouragement I would never have had the courage to 'live outside the box'.

If a teacher's success is based on the depth by which they touch their student's lives - I think it's fair to say Linda has been wildly successful. Jenifer (Steele) DeMellier, Class of 1987

This is a tribute to Mr. Jones, who taught American History at Wilson. Mr. Jones told us stories that were not in our history books. He made events and times and people come alive for me by sharing his vast education. Thanks Mr. Jones! You made it so much fun to learn! - Toni Piland Anderson - Class of '69 Tualatin, Oregon

Annie Painter was an Art Teacher at Wilson High School during the ’72-74 school years. Photo 1. She was best known for the Art Marketing project, which had Wilson students designing items and services which were saleable in the general marketplace.  Initially she was known as Annie Johnson, but was married midway though this period. High points included an interior decorating project for the public defender’s office and animal costumes for a play, sewed on 100 year old treadle machines. A part of her students were “counter culture” individuals who benefited from Annie’s experience in working with this population; others were top students seeking artistic freedom. She had come to Wilson partly to help with some of the disenfranchised youth of the time. In addition to her teaching experience she had two years at PPS alternative school in the Lair Hill Neighborhood. This school was operated by Annie and founder John Kerr to rescue drug involved students. Following her Wilson job, Annie moved on to a period of being an artist. She worked in her home-studio on Vermont street and produced a series of soft sculptures, of the type popularized by Claes Oldenburg. A piece of this work which resembled a life size fully set dinner table was shown at the Smithsonian Institution Kitchen show, hosted by the Portland Art Museum. However, she soon tired of working alone, missing the educators and students. She subsequently became the visual and performing arts curriculum developer for Multnomah County IED, an organization which serves all of the county schools by providing in-service training for teachers in special subject areas. She made 6 films for teachers, which were called “The Crafty Annie” series. These lessons were piloted in numerous actual classrooms, with teachers observing the processes. This IED work became the basis of her current career which involves setting up art programs for districts across the nation. During the time she was transitioning from artist to educator, she took a temporary job with the Portland Children’s Museum for a few weeks to replace an employee on leave. That begin a relationship with the Director of the Children’s Museum, Bob Bridgeford (Wilson 1961). They were married in 1980 and remain together today. Following her marriage, Annie changed jobs again: she returned to school and got an administrative certificate. This led to being hired in the Gresham school system where she served for 13 years, working as the Principal of Powell Valley Elementary and opening Clinton Kelly Elementary.  In 1995 her husband had to resign from the Museum and move to eastern Oregon because of severe allergies.   But not before his daughter, Kristen Bridgeford (Wilson 1991) graduated from high school. As he recovered, he built a house and eventually returned to college to retrain. He earned a counseling degree and now works for Deschutes County Mental health as a therapist, dealing with anxiety and trauma. Ending her years as a principal, Annie moved to Central Oregon to join Bob, and begin a period of national travel and consulting. She was hired by a foundation which served low income school areas and matched monies with “No child left behind” grants to improve teaching and curriculum in these schools. Annie wrote two text books for children: Struggling Artist Masterpiece and Vincent and Jake Learn Color Mixing which she used during these trips. The books are still available today at Amazon or at her website, Photo 2. Annie and Bob can be found today at their home in Sisters, Oregon, where they live with their two Vizsla dogs, Theo Van Gogh and Alexander (the great) Calder.  Annie’s Wilson students in the art marketing program, 1973: Mark Smith, Susan Wade, Bill Botterton, Chuck Lister, Eric Barnett, Jan Weissberg, Aleen Caplan, Pam Franks, Clella Clifton, Anna Federighi, Roger Eastman, Lisa Wood, Rhonda Dodge, Becky Bussman, Keith Hinsz, Lauren Devecka, Leslie Gass, Julie Peterson, Jane Rudnik, Bill Johnston, Deborah Leopold, Deborah Banks, Sara Goodwin, Rosie Kupersmith, Ann Washburn, Barbara Ploense. [written by Bob Bridgeford 09/11/2009]


Wilson High School had a lot of fine teachers during the time I was there, from 1990-1993. A few stand out for me, and I'll always hold their teaching ability in the highest regard. Mr. Scott McDermet - a fine and devoted math teacher. For my first three years at Wilson, I had some other math teachers who were okay, but Mr. McDermet ensured that students learned the material well.  I went into college (Oregon State University, '98) well prepared in math thanks to him.  He was always at school and in his classroom before 7:00 am, helping students in all of the courses he taught, which included Precalc and Algebra 2 and Geometry. Mr. Edward Basaraba was without equal as both an English and Latin teacher. He knew it all when it came to both subjects - his classes weren't for the chickenhearted and you had to work hard if you wanted a good grade. He was definitely one of the finest high school teachers in Portland for many years. We were lucky to have him just before he retired. Mr. Marc Wolters - orchestra and band conductor. Mr. Wolters was (and still is) a fine musician and he got the very best out of our orchestra. We won the OSSHE State Championship in 1990, and placed 2nd for a couple years after. Mr. Nick Hanches - US History and Political Science - was an outstanding teacher and human being. I learned better and more efficient ways of learning thanks to him. He was always willing to meet before class or during the day to discuss class material. Students respected him immensely; his lectures were never boring.  You could talk to him about things ongoing in your personal life too. And finally, Ms. Lynne Soto-Seelig. I had her for English for two years. Her red pen was everpresent on most of my papers, and the grades I got on them sometimes weren't high. But I'm indebted to her for teaching me the importance and value of good writing and written communication.  written by Andrew Ramage '93


I might be able to call out a few teachers that I didn't click with, but it would be far easier to call out the amazing teachers who I learned from. My class once pointed out to Mr. Hanches - that his bald spot was in the shape of a heart. He told us it was "because of all the love he got at home." His passion for history helped push me to declare a BA in History, and in some degree, an MFA in Architectural History. Mrs. Lee ... I will always remember second mod and the Spartans. Mrs. Clyman ... I still enjoy Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. Mr. Thiessen .... I will always remember talking about Jethro Tull and random vocab words like mottled and panacea. And Mr. Dorsey and Mr. Smith made math enjoyable. Specifically, Mr. Relampagos, Zaraza, and are fantastic teachers! High School years are difficult years for anyone, teacher and student. Nerdy but true, I enjoyed my time at Wilson. I had good friends and great teachers.
               Jessica M. Stewart Class of 1996

English is my 3rd language. Mr. Ladd was a great patient steady teacher that never gave up on me. He made me find the eagerness and pleasure in reading and writing, gave me the courage to research and decipher words that I did not understand. It is thanks to teachers like Mr. Ladd that students grow up to be the best they can be, and never give up.​Carmen Jackson, Class of '89