Sister Sharon Sullivan says her life was shaped by her church, her family and her beloved Girl Scouts. On Oct. 19, standing before a crowd of well-wishers, she added a fourth factor in her development – her years as a student at Owensboro High School.
Sister Sharon, congregational leader of the Ursuline Sisters of Mount Saint Joseph, was one of six graduates of the Owensboro, Ky., school inducted into the Hall of Achievement during a ceremony in the school’s media center. The school created the award in 2001 to recognize alumni who have “distinguished themselves through service to others as well as through excellence in their fields.”
A plaque with Sister Sharon’s picture now hangs in the school, and reads: “Elected congregational leader of the Ursuline Sisters of Mount Saint Joseph in 2009, she has been an Ursuline since 1982. At Brescia University from 1984-2010, she coordinated the special education program, chaired the School of Education, and served as vice president of academic affairs. Appointed by the governor to the Kentucky’s State Advisory Panel for Exceptional Children, she was twice elected its chair.
“A lifetime Girl Scout, she served on the Kentuckiana Girl Scout Council Board and received the “Thanks Badge,” a national volunteer recognition award. She holds a Ph.D. from Purdue University and earned its School of Education Outstanding Dissertation Award. Throughout her life, she has been active in environmental and advocacy efforts.”
Sister Sharon graduated in 1965 with more than 400 students, one of the largest classes in school history. She moved from Houston when she was 13 after her father was offered a job as an officer with Texas Gas Transmission Corp. in Owensboro. Among the groups she was involved in were the German Club, the Junior Historical Society, National Honor Society, Math Club, Junior Investigators, Future Teachers of America and the Rose Curtain Players. She was also a National Merit Finalist.
The other members of the induction class were J.P. Fentress, class of 1950; the Rev. LaMont Jones Jr., class of 1984; State Rep. Tommy Thompson, class of 1966; the late Phil Sayre, class of 1967; and the late Franklin Joseph Neubauer, class of 1929. Since the inception of the Hall of Achievement, 51 graduates have been inducted.
After the ceremony, the inductees were given a tour of the school, and entertained by students in various fine arts groups.