2015 Hall of Fame Recipients
ralph manley - class of 1977
A legacy of teaching and coaching is on display with the induction of Ralph Manley, who joins his father, the late Thomas Manley, to become the first father-son duo named to the Fargo South Hall of Fame.
Ralph is a 1977 South graduate who began his swimming and diving coaching career as an assistant under his father before developing the Mandan High School boys and girls programs into powerhouses. He has won four state girls championships and three boys state titles with the Braves. He has coached 80 individual state champions and 32 relay state winners.
Earlier this year, Ralph and Tom became the first father-son inductees in the National High School Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame. They also share the National Interscholastic Swimming Coaching Association Outstanding Service Award, which is the group's highest honor. Ralph received it in 2013, 20 years after Tom.
Ralph has received numerous state, region and national honors. He was named NHSACA Swimming and Diving National Coach of the Year in 2011.
Ralph has been in great demand as a speaker, appearing at the NHSACA national convention a dozen times. He has been that group’s national swimming chair for the past 12 years.
Ralph has been a physical education teacher at Mandan for 29 years. His bosses say his academic and athletic acumen are similar.
"As a teacher, Ralph is very organized, highly motivated and structured," Mandan High School Principal Mark Andresen says. "He is exceptional in his craft and his students often praise him for his compassion and belief in them."
Ralph was a four-year letter winner for the South swimming team and captain for two years. He was a two-time relay state champion and held the team record in the 100-yard butterfly. He went on to swim at North Dakota State University.
dan smith - class of 1978
When America ushered in a new era in space travel by launching the Orion Multipurpose Crew Vehicle, the software company that supports aerospace giant Lockheed Martin sent Dan Smith to Florida to talk about the systems that will eventually help astronauts travel to Mars.
The 1978 Fargo South graduate is a key member of the team designing and verifying large programmable chips for the Orion. The CEO of the Red Canyon Software group, Barry Hamilton, says Dan’s work involves “the brains of the circuit boards flying on the spacecraft,” so they must perform flawlessly.
With a background that includes military service, a stint as a college algebra teacher and numerous speaking engagements, Hamilton says Dan was an obvious choice to attend the Orion’s maiden voyage.
"Dan represented Red Canyon at these key events at Kennedy Space Center and spoke to a room of hundreds of the most prominent aerospace minds without hesitation," Hamilton says.
While in high school, Dan was the lead photographer and a reporter for the school’s award-winning Sudhian newspaper. He was one of three National Merit Scholars in his class. He earned his undergraduate degree in electrical engineering from NDSU and master’s degree from California-Davis.
In the middle of his higher education, he joined the North Dakota Air National Guard and conducted maintenance on the F-4 aircraft. He took undergraduate pilot training and flew jet trainers at Vance Air Force Base. He eventually was named Deputy Commander of the 140th Engineering Squadron. He retired as a major.
“Dan is fondly known by our high school journalism crowd as our very own rocket scientist,” says Karen O’Connor, a classmate and member of the South Hall of Fame. “In his spare time, he still manages to win photography awards, mentor high school students and win chili cook-offs.”
david thorson - class of 1984
Whether it has been coaching one of the premier high school basketball programs in the country or finding ways for students to afford a quality education, David Thorson has been a national success story.
The 1984 Fargo South graduate has guided the Minneapolis DeLaSalle boys basketball team to an astounding record of 579-123 in 20 seasons. He has won seven state championships, including the last four Minnesota Class 3A titles, and finished in the top four on four other occasions.
David is one of the most sought-after clinicians in the field and has coached at numerous elite academies, including camps run by Michael Jordan and LeBron James. He regularly rubs elbows with big-name college coaches like Michigan State's Tom Izzo, Arizona's Sean Miller, Virginia Tech's Buzz Williams and Cincinnati's Mick Cronin.
Barry Lieske, DeLaSalle president, says that David has distinguished himself as one of the best high school coaches Minnesota has ever seen.
"Yet, what many may never know is the care, passion and selfless approach he brings to the lifelong relationships he has formed as a teacher/coach with every student he encounters," Lieske said.
David is also a tireless fundraiser for DeLaSalle. In the 10 years he has led the development program, the school has raised more than $23 million. That has provided financial aid to countless families for their students.
In high school, David helped the basketball team to its first state tournament berth in 17 years. He was an all-conference player for two seasons and played in the Lions All-Star game. He went on to play basketball at Hamline University.
“Throughout his career and in all venues, David has achieved success and been recognized for his dedication and service to the schools and communities he has served,” says Tom Critchley, executive director of the Minnesota Basketball Coaches Association.
linda kline lamar - class of 1989
Fellow musicians refer to Linda Kline Lamar as one of the leading violists of her time and one of the premier teachers in the country.
Currently the Associate Chair for the Department of Music at Boise State University, the 1989 South High graduate has a performance, leadership and teaching resume that stretches from coast to coast.
"Linda is one of the leading musicians of her generation and entirely worthy of this fine honor," says Peter Slowik, professor of viola at the Oberlin Conservatory and former president of the American Viola Society. "Her career as an important artist-teacher of viola has national significance."
Slowik says he often refers students from the top music schools to Linda.
Linda has recently been performing with the IRIS Orchestra of Germantown, Tennessee, and the Boise Philharmonic. She also has played with Virtuosi Festival Orchestra in Recife, Brazil; the Strings Festival Orchestra in Steamboat Springs, Colorado; the Memphis Symphony Orchestra; the Spoleto Festival Orchestra in Charleston, South Carolina; the Aspen Festival Orchestra; and the Civic Orchestra of Chicago.
In addition, Linda has numerous acclaimed solo viola performances.
“As a musician, she is without peer on our faculty,” says Mark Hansen, professor and chair of the Boise State College of Arts and Sciences. “Her viola playing is infused with artistic intellect, technical achievement, warmth of sound, and a compelling interpretive and communicative foundation which makes it always a pleasure to hear her play.”
While in high school, Linda was named to the North Dakota All-State Orchestra and was a member of the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony her senior year. She went on to earn performance degrees from Northwestern University, the Cleveland Institute of Music and the University of Memphis.
“She portrays personal characteristics that speak well of her roots: determination, equilibrium, attention to details, care for others,” Slowik says.
ed hutlin - faculty
Edward Huttlin has been described as a talented teacher and trombonist, a role model to students and colleagues, and a passionate promoter of the arts. That doesn’t begin to capsulize a career that includes 26 years as a Fargo South teacher and band director.
South students under Ed's tutelage won 639 positions in the North Dakota All-State Band and Orchestra and had the highest number of students selected in 23 of 26 years. South band members received 2,851 medals at the State Solo and Ensemble contests from 1984-2010.
Three of his students received national recognition as outstanding musicians. At least 10 of Ed's former students make a living as performing musicians, and hundreds of others continue to play in community bands and orchestras.
"His ability to instill in students an appreciation for the craft of playing an instrument is remarkable," says Nathaniel Dickey, Assistant Professor of Music at Concordia College. "That he does so with such joy, humor and dedication to each student’s well-being as a person makes his teaching legacy all the more significant."
Ed was named North Dakota Music Educator of the Year in 2010 and was named to the “50 Band Directors Who Make A Difference” list published by School Band and Orchestra Magazine.
His career as performer is equally as impressive. He played bass trombone with the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony for more than 30 years. He has played with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and Detroit Concert Band. As a freelance musician, he performed in backup bands for major celebrities such as Kenny Rogers, Frankie Valli, Bobby Vinton, Doc Severinson and others.
"Dr. Huttlin is an outstanding trombone player in every aspect of the profession," said John Tesch, professor of music at Minnesota State University Moorhead. "It has been, and remains, my great honor to perform with him."