Distinguished Alumni Award

The Distinguished Alumni Award

The Distinguished Alumni Award is presented by the Susquehanna Township School District, in partnership with Alumni Association, to recognize alumni who have continued involvement with the students of the district and for their positive message that is shared with them. The award is presented during the Commencement cersmonies.

June 7, 2019

Bony (center) is pictured with his wife Neelofar, their two sons, and his brother Danny, a 1977 alumnus.

Bony Dawood, Class of 1980, has a background rooted in Engineering.  His father M. Sheikh Dawood, is a Geotechnical Engineer and was working in Burma where he met his wife, Yasmin and had their three sons.  In 1963, the military took over the nation of Burma and Mr. Dawood with the assistance of his employers fled the country, eventually settling in Harrisburg.  Bony went to elementary school at Sara Lindemuth Elementary School and celebrated becoming an American Citizen in the Bicentennial year, 1976 at Susquehanna Township Middle School.  Bony and his two older brothers became Engineers like their father.  Bony received his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Delaware and is a licensed Professional Engineer in over five states.

After working for several Engineering firms in Northern Virginia and Central Pennsylvania, Bony formed his own firm – Dawood Engineering – in 1992 with a $2,500 contract and $5,000 in the bank.  He built a growing business focused on highway design, land development, and municipal engineering,.  In the early days, Bony and his wife, Neelofar, were the cleaning crew, accounting department, and field crew.  As the company grew Bony developed and built hi own office building which propelled the presence of the company and contributed to its growth.  Dawood Engineering is now in six states with eight offices and represents major clients such as PennDOT, UPMC, EQT, and PPL to name a few.  The values learned in the early years became the core culture of the organization.  Several clients remain with the company since its initial formation over 25 years ago.

Dawood Engineering earned its reputation for value and has become one of the most dominant engineering forms in Pennsylvania.  Dawood performs key design roles on major infrastructure projects nationwide.  Form building bridges to mapping pipelines, to leading design of new buildings like the Federal Courthouse in Harrisburg, Dawood is at the epicenter of new infrastructure design in our community.

Bony Dawood’s story is the modern-day American Dream – a story that resonates and gives hope to many businesses, particularly considering current events.  Most importantly, through his entrepreneurial vision, the company he founded employs 150 employees in well-paying, family-sustaining jobs.  Dawood Engineering is a shining example of the impact one entrepreneur can make with the dedication to overcome the inevitable challenge of starting and owning a business.

Bony Dawood

June 7, 2018

Andrea (right) is pictured here with 2018 Commencement Keynote Tracy Heather Strain, Class of 1978

Andrea is a proud graduate of Susquehanna Township High School. She is married to Steve Weikert (Class of 1989) and they reside in Susquehanna Township with their two children Eli (Class of 2016) and Lexi (Class of 2018).  Andrea has been involved with STSD schools since Eli was in kindergarten and held many positions with district volunteer organizations to include elementary school stores, May Fairs, and served as treasurer for the PTO.  Andrea also served the Middle School PTO by supporting school dances, athletic events, fundraisers, and teacher appreciation days.

At the high school level, Andrea has been very active with athletic booster organizations and served as the Girls Basketball Booster President for three years.  Andrea is most proud of her accomplishment during her role as a parent/alumnae volunteer representative for the Annual Pink Out Breast Cancer Awareness and Support campaign for the past six years.  This event is held each year in October and includes a Friday night football game and the goal is to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer.  Andrea has taken the event from a single high school football game and expanded the events to all four buildings within the district.  Since Andrea has been involved, over $70,000 has been raised to benefit Pink Hands of Hope, PA Breast Coalition, and Vickie’s Angel Foundation.

In August, Andrea will become an empty nester and she looks forward to becoming more involved with the STHS Alumni Association.  Professionally, Andrea is the Associate Executive Director of the Jewish Federation of Greater Harrisburg.  Andrea is very passionate about STSD and looks forward to continuing her support of the district.

Andrea Mercurio Weikert

June 8, 2017

John is pictured here with 2017 Commencement Keynote Imeime Umana, Class of 2010

John, Class of 2003, is a life-long resident of Susquehanna Township. After graduating from Penn State University in 2007, John became a Financial Advisor with Morgan Stanley Wealth Management. Managing a team of five senior advisors, John added to his credentials, acheiving the title of Financial Planning Specilaist.

In addition to his career, John has possessed a passion for serving his community since a very early age. John, focused on youth and education, was elected to the Susquehanna Township School Board at 24. Serving one term, John was elected Vice-President by his peers. President of the Hanna Education Foundation, John has worked to foster a culture of excellence for all students through after school programs, mini-grants for teachers and administrators to promote educational opportunities, and the creation of innovative educational programs.

John has also become depply involved with the Susquehanna Township Alumni Association. Serving as Vice-President, the alumni association not only maintains alumni relations, but works diligently to promote the educational, recreational, and athletic interests of school district students.

John also served as President of the Penn State Alumni Association, Capital Area Chapter. John is a founding member of the The Hill Society, a social organization created to provide a forum for discussion on issues impacting the local region for business, government, and political professionals.

John and his loving wife, Jenna, have a beautiful three-year-old daughter, Quinn, who is the apple of his eye.

John A. Fabian III

June 9, 2016

Dwayne is pictured here with 2016 Commencement Keynote Miriam Gomez Witmer, Class of 1979.

Dwayne, Class of 1978, was a member of the 880 Yard Relay team which owns the retired PIAA State record, a member of the one-time PIAA State record One Mile Relay team. He also owns the District III 440-yard dash retired record. While on a track scholarship at the University of Pittsburgh, he was a member of the team that held the Indoor Mile Relay record. Dwayne ran in some of the country’s most prestigious collegiate track meets and graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in Psychology.

Although a lengthy Indoor and Outdoor Track schedule at Pitt kept him busy, Dwayne served on a team at the Western Pennsylvania School for the Blind under Pitt Assistant Professor Dr. Russell T. Jones, first as a behavior trainer and data coder. He then became the key teacher, where his responsibilities included administering a treatment procedure designed to enhance individuals’ functioning in emergency fire situations. Dr. Jones credited Dwayne in his Behavior Therapy and Journal of Community Psychology publications including “Emergency Fire-Safety Skills for Blind Children and Adolescents: Group Training and Generalization“.

After Pitt, Dwayne began his career at International Business Machines (IBM). Now in his 33rd year, he is an Advisory Procurement Professional. During his time with IBM, Dwayne has been the lead on several key projects including 1999 millenium change or Y2K, where he travelled throughout the US and Europe assisting companies in their 1999 to 2000 conversion preparations. Today, Dwayne has global responsibilities for several of IBM’s corporate programs within the service parts organization, including Social Responsibility, Environmental Compliance, Product Regulatory Compliance, Supplier Performance Management, Supplier Diversity, and the US Small Business Initiative.

In March, Minority Business USA magazine honored Dwayne as a Corporate Buyer of the Year for his contributions to Supplier Diversity and Small Business Advocacy. Dwayne has served on IBM’s Employee Charitable Contribution Campain for nearly 30 years and for ten years he volunteered on the United Way of the Capital Region’s fund allocation committee. He also volunteered with the late Governor George M. Leader to teach computer skills to senior adults. Simultaneously, Dwayne was a HANNA Education Foundation trustee for ten years while also volunteering on the STHS Alumni Association board.

Today, Dwayne is President of the STHS Alumni Association and Vice-President of the HANNA Education Foundation.

Dwayne DeFoor

June 9, 2015

Al is pictured here with his family.

Al, Class of 1939, begun his career after grqduation at the National Bank in Penbrook. It was shortly thereafter that he enlisted in the Army of the United States as a Private on August 24, 1942. Mr. Richwine served in the 5th Army Air Force in the South Pacific as a Finance Officer at the headquarters of Five-star General Douglas MacArthur. Al continued serving under General MacArthur for the duration of the war throughout the Pacific, ending up at Atsugi Airdrome outside of Tokyo, on D Day minus 2.

Following World War II, he graduated from Elizabethtown College in 1949 with a BS in Business Administration, while also continuing to work at the National Bank of Penbrook, where he had started working out of high school. He retired as the Head of the International Department at the main office in Harrisburg after 45 1/2 years, with ONLY one sick day!

Al is a charter member of the Ridgeway Community Church, where he helped choose the land for its construction, and has sung in the choir for nearly seventy years. A tenor, Mr. Richwine learned his craft during his school years from Sara Lindemuth. He continues to lead the singing of the STHS alma mater at all alumni association events!

Al is an active member of the Colonial Park Rotary Club for the past 60 years, the first 30 with perfect attendance, he has served in many leadership roles including President. He has been involved with the United Way; the former Easter Seal Society; the former Sherwood Hall, a residential living facility for mentally challenged adults; the Lebanon Valley Brethren Home; and the STHS Alumni Association. It was in the early 1980’s where Mr. Richwine’s efforts re-invigorated the Alumni Association. He also served on the World War II Memorial Committee that organized the construction of the monument sitting in the Memorial Gardens at Veteran’s Park.

Al, who was married for 64 years to Jane until her passing in 2011, has two daughters, Cindi and Kathy. He has one grandchild, Sarah.

Albert Richwine

June 12, 2014

Shirley is pictured here with her family.

Shirley Kauffman Kannegieser is a 1950 graduate of Susquehanna Township High School. Most of her life was spent in the township. She is the daughter of Jacob & Ruth Kauffman. Jacob Kauffman was a 1925 graduate of Susquehanna Township High School. Her mother Ruth worked in the High School cafeteria. Shirley’s younger years were spent as a shadow in her father’s footsteps while he coached Little League Baseball. For many years she served as his scorekeeper. He instilled in her the love for Susquehanna Township and what it represented. The Little League Field located behind the Middle School is named KAUFFMAN FIELD after her father.

While attending high school, Shirley competed in several sports including Basketball, where she was Team Captain, Softball, and Field Hockey. A junior member of the Band, she was co-chairman of the committee to raise money for new band uniforms. During her senior year, she was Head Majorette. She was also a member of the choir and helped raisee funds for Ms. Sara Lindemuth, the namesake of Sara Lindemuth Elementary School.

After graduation she continued to reside in Susquehanna Township where she worked at the Susquehanna Township Board of Commissioners as a secretary. Mrs. Kannegieser then worked at the school district where she later became the first Secretary at Sara Lindemuth Elementary School.

Shirley has served as Treasurer, Vice-President, and 2012-2013 President of the Susquehanna Township High School Alumni Association. She has served on multiple committees including the World War II Memorial – Dedicated in 2007, the Korean War Memorial – Dedicated in 2009, and currently the Vietnam War Memorial. She also serves on the Alumni Scholarship and Alumni Golf Tournament committees.

Shirley is proud of her three generation legacy here at Susquehanna Township High School. Along with her father, she was married to Charles Kannegieser Sr., Class of 1949. They have three children who are also graduates – Charles Jr., Class of 1971, Deborah, Class of 1974, and Robert, Class of 1975.

Shirely Kauffman Kannegieser

June 13, 2013

Chris, pictured here with Shirley Kannegieser and Dwayne DeFoor, is a 1991 graduate of Susquehanna Township High School.

Chris’ bio from the Chris “Handles” Franklin Foundation:

Everyone has dreams and aspirations, and for Chris “Handles” Franklin it was always to be a Harlem Globetrotter. After watching them in animation as a child, Franklin was inspired. The Harrisburg native was in awe of their skills, their class and mainly the game of basketball. The Globetrotters were his first introduction to basketball when he saw them on the cartoons.

For Franklin there was no road map to achieving his dreams. After attending Lock Haven, where he is fifth on the school’s all-time steals list and was top 10 in assists in the nation twice during his tenure there, he sent in a tape to the Globetrotters. That was unsuccessful, so the 6-foot-1 point guard took to the avenues until he was recognized as one of the best ball handlers in the world.

He had a stint in the ABA with the Wilkes-Barre Blazers, as well as in the EBA playing for the Harrisburg Horizon. Soon after, Franklin began to break through. He attended the world’s best ball handler competition, which was judged at NBA All-Star weekend. Franklin scored a perfect 100 which led to him signing a contract with Nike.

Franklin was then invited to do a freestyle commercial with NBA stars Paul Pierce and Vince Carter. The commercial won numerous awards and put Franklin’s face on a national stage. Shortly after starring in these commercials, the Globetrotters contacted Franklin, something he could have never imagined. Serving as the famous showman for The Globetrotters, Franklin still continues to travel the world supplying the fans with plenty of fun and entertainment.

Franklin sees himself as an example to kids and others to never give up.

Chris “Handles” Franklin