Five men known for their lasting impact as teachers, coaches and school administrators will be inducted into the Ventura County Educators’ Hall of Fame in June.
The ceremony, which will honor two living recipients and three who are deceased, will take place June 17 at the Courtyard Marriott in Oxnard.
The event will also recognize the 2010 Ventura County Teacher of the Year, Kristine Guzman from Will Rogers School in Ventura.
The Ventura County Educators’ Hall of Fame is a nonprofit organization formed in 2005 by Camarillo businessman Darrin Parrent to recognize the best and brightest of the county’s educational system.
“Many educators are humble and modest and don’t draw attention to themselves, but they make a huge difference in society,” Parrent said. “Athletes have a Hall of Fame. We needed a way to recognize the educators who have impacted so many individuals in such a powerful way.”
The Ventura County Educators’ Hall of Fame is resuming inductions after a two-year hiatus, during which Parrent says the group underwent board changes and fundraising challenges. Induction ceremonies in 2007 and 2008 honored 18 educators, living and dead, with inductees ranging from science teachers to superintendents.
This year’s inductees and their career highlights are noted below.
Jim Lane, 72, of Oak View, spent more than 37 years at Hueneme High School as a teacher, coach and athletic director. Although he retired in 2002, Lane still helps out with the student mentor program he founded. He also volunteers as a substitute teacher, raises funds for school athletics and coaches golf. Lane also writes about education for The Star.
Andy McEuen, 89, of Oxnard, began as a business teacher at Oxnard High School after serving in a World War II combat battalion. He became the principal of the new Hueneme High School in 1959 and later became superintendent of the Oxnard Union High School District until his retirement in 1980. Under his direction, Hueneme became a state model for parent and student involvement.
John Divine, an industrial arts teacher from Isbell Middle School in Santa Paula, died in 1982 at age 71, after a 30-year career as an educator. He often brought kids home to have dinner with his family, paid for needy children to go on field trips and visited the homes of kids who missed class. Many of his students stayed in close contact with him throughout their lives. The gymnasium at Isbell Middle School is named in Divine’s honor.
Les Meredith Jr. was a teacher-principal at Santa Rosa School and assistant principal at Los Altos Intermediate School, both in Camarillo. Meredith died in 2009 at the age of 78. He’s credited with developing the vocational and science instruction programs at Santa Rosa Elementary. He also was a scuba instructor and longtime member of the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department Underwater Search and Rescue Team.
Charles Mozley, of Fillmore, affectionately known as “Mr. Moze” by some of his students, taught government, politics, journalism and psychology at Fillmore High School for almost 30 years, as well as adult education in Oxnard and Ventura. He also announced FHS football and basketball games, served as adviser to the senior class, the pep squad and the student council, and directed the annual Christmas pageant, variety show and senior play. Mozley died in 2007 at the age of 81.
The event will kick off with a cocktail reception at 5 p.m. and dinner at 6 p.m., followed by the award ceremony. Tickets, which include a buffet dinner, are $75 and can be purchased through Ventura County Educators’ Hall of Fame’s website at www.vceh.com