Sue Smegal Named 2020 Art Hecht Volunteer of the Year Award Recipient

Tuesday, April 28th, 2020 - Posted in All District News District Communications

Sue Smegal, former Piedmont Middle School teacher, two-term Board of Education member, and long-time volunteer in the schools and community, will be honored with this year’s Arthur Hecht Volunteer of the Year Award.  The award is presented each year to an individual who has made outstanding contributions to the community and to Piedmont’s youth through volunteer service over a period of many years. The Board of Education will present the award at its meeting on May 13th .

Ms. Smegal has been a fierce advocate for children in Piedmont and the East Bay for over 45 years. She stands at the ready to support the schools and community, as is evidenced by her vast and exhaustive list of volunteer activities which include, serving on the Wildwood Parents Club Board, the Piedmont Boy Scouts Board, the Ann Martin Center Board, the PEF Board, and as a two-term Board of Education member (1980-1988). 

Ms. Smegal was a founding member of the 1983 Steering Committee for Funds for Piedmont’s Future, the group that went on to start the Piedmont School Parcel Tax.

As a former teacher at Piedmont Middle School (1989-2000), she has been a strong advocate for student health and wellness.  She has served as a Hill Branch Member at Childrens Hospital Oakland, a member of the Alameda County Child Abuse Prevention Task Force, and the PUSD Wellness Center Advisory Committee.

Ms. Smegal is a highly respected community member, her insights and perspective on children and the communities that support them continues to be valued by many.

“I was delighted to see Sue’s nomination and the number of community members who supported it,” said Amal Smith, School Board President. “Sue is steadfast in her commitment to our children and this community, a wonderful source for ideas, advice, and direction. She is smart, candid, and always gracious, a most deserved recipient of this award that celebrates giving.”

“I am so thrilled to honor Ms. Smegal with this community award,” said PUSD Superintendent Randall Booker.  “She is incredibly supportive, wise in her guidance, and always at the ready to promote education and wellness for Piedmont’s students.  She is a wonderful volunteer, and a sincere ambassador for the needs of students.”

Heather Frank, Executive Director of the Piedmont Education Foundation, shared, “Ms. Smegal’s many works to support our schools over the years have had an incredible, long-lasting impact. She continues to make herself available to PEF and other organizations for outreach and advocacy in the community. Ms. Smegal truly embodies the spirit of the Art Hecht award.”

The Board of Education will honor the extraordinary contributions of Ms. Smegal with this award on May 13th during the regularly scheduled Board of Education Meeting.

Art Hecht Award

Art Hecht was well known as a volunteer dedicated to serving students in Piedmont and Oakland.  He was a member of Piedmont’s Board of Education from 1970 to 1982, and instrumental in developing Millennium High School, Piedmont’s alternative high school.  Established in 1998, the Arthur Hecht Award honors both Hecht’s memory and extraordinary individuals who continue his legacy of service.

This award is presented annually to individuals who have volunteered their efforts over a period of time and made a difference because of their involvement and commitment to Piedmont’s youth. Following are the previous recipients: 

Hunter McCreary (1998); 

Ann Chandler (1999); 

Ruth Cuming (2000); 

Lisa Lomenzo (2001); 

jointly by Cathie Geddeis and Marion Souyoultzis (2002); 

jointly by Fritz and Mary Wooster (2003); 

Elizabeth (Betsy) Gentry (2004); 

Cynthia Gorman (2005); 

Grier Graff (2006); 

Julia Burke (2007); 

Maude Pervere (2008); 

jointly to Anne-Marie Lamarche and Mark Menke (2009); 

Janiele Maffei Tovani (2010); 

Andrea Swenson (2011); 

June Monach (2012); 

Bill Drum (posthumously) and Mary Ireland  (2013);

Ray Perman (2014);

Jennifer Fox (2015);

Katie Korotzer (2016);

Hilary Cooper (2017);

Holly Hanke (2018);

Cathy Glazier (2019).

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