Sussex Central lauds six new Hall of Fame awardees

By Glenn Rolfe
Posted 11/28/21

GEORGETOWN — Sussex Central High School’s Hall of Fame welcomed six new honorees during a Nov. 19 ceremony.

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Sussex Central lauds six new Hall of Fame awardees

Sussex Central High School Principal Dr. Bradley Layfield, left, presents a SCHS Hall of Fame plaque honoring the late Kirk Rogers to Mr. Rogers' father, Dave Rogers, and his wife, Wendy Rogers Palermo, during a Nov. 19 induction ceremony.
Sussex Central High School Principal Dr. Bradley Layfield, left, presents a SCHS Hall of Fame plaque honoring the late Kirk Rogers to Mr. Rogers' father, Dave Rogers, and his wife, Wendy Rogers Palermo, during a Nov. 19 induction ceremony.
Submitted photo/Brian Birch
Posted

GEORGETOWN — Sussex Central High School’s Hall of Fame welcomed six new honorees during a Nov. 19 ceremony.

The 2021 induction class included Sussex Central graduates who have noteworthy achievements at local, state and national levels.

The honored were Trinity Hall, Dr. Audrey Carey, Dr. Jack “Jay” Owens Jr., Donna Polk, Joe Shockley and Kirk Rogers, who was inducted posthumously.

Trinity Hall

A 2003 graduate, Ms. Hall received degrees from both Hampton University and Georgetown University. She worked as an intern for Joe Biden’s 2008 presidential campaign, was hired to his staff while he served as vice president and currently works as the administrative director/deputy chief of staff for operations for U.S. Sen. Chris Coons. Ms. Hall gives back to her community by advocating for Sussex County students who apply for intern positions.

Dr. Audrey Carey

Dr. Carey, a 1995 graduate, has over 20 years of dedicated and progressive experience in developing educational systems for the Indian River School District. She was instrumental in creating the district’s Immersion Program and is the current supervisor of the Early Learning Center. Her passion is the education of young children, which shows in the many initiatives she is involved in.

Dr. Jack ‘Jay’ Owens Jr.

A 1996 graduate, Dr. Owens has worked his entire career for IRSD in multiple roles, from special-education teacher, assistant principal at various schools, principal at SCHS, assistant superintendent and now superintendent. His dedication to the district is unparalleled.

Donna Polk

Having obtained bachelor’s and master’s degrees, Ms. Polk, a 1987 SCHS graduate, spent her earlier years counseling youth. She also has 20 years of multifaceted experience in sports and athletic administration, most recently as the executive director of the Delaware Interscholastic Athletic Association. Her philosophy is to develop and help student athletes enjoy their high school experience through learning opportunities available academically, athletically and socially.

Joe Shockley

A 1976 graduate of Sussex Central, Mr. Shockley has an extensive list of athletic honors, both personally and through coaching, earning several team and individual awards. He served on several boards involving community sports, worked in banking in Sussex County for over 30 years and continues his commitment to the area.

Kirk Rogers

A 1992 graduate, Mr. Rogers was very active in the Sussex Central athletic programs. In military service, Mr. Rogers was a staff sergeant in the U.S. Army and an Army Ranger. He worked for the Department of Correction and, in his short life, dedicated himself to the community and had a soft spot for local veterans. His memory lives on through his wife, Wendy Rogers Palermo, as well as his children and family. Mr. Rogers’ award was accepted by his wife and his father, Dave Rogers.

SCHS Hall of Fame

Established in 1990 to recognize outstanding achievements by alumni of Sussex Central High School, Hall of Fame inductions ended in 2002 but were reestablished in 2013.

To be nominated, an individual must have received a diploma from SCHS, with eligibility beginning five years after graduation. Nominations are submitted to the school in February, and the Hall of Fame Committee convenes to review them and recommend inductees.

Honorees are judged based on their professional achievements; service to the nation, state and/or community; academic achievements beyond high school; and other significant contributions.

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