Five Alumni Recognized by Affton Education Foundation

Pictured from left: Bert Schmitt; Dr. Dale M. Pitt; Markus Golden; Diane Kohl, wife of the late Ronald N. Kohl; and John Foster Dyess.

On Saturday, March 5, four Affton High School alumni were included in the 2016 class of inductees into the Affton Hall of Fame. They include: John Foster Dyess (class of 1957), Ronald N. Kohl (1964), Dr. Dale M. Pitt (1968), and Bert Schmitt, also known as Bert Stratford (1960). In addition, the Affton Education Foundation presented the 2016 Outstanding Young Alumni Award to Markus Golden (2010).

The Affton Education Foundation celebrated inductees and award recipients at their annual Hall of Fame Gala. The Affton Education Foundation’s mission is to improve and enhance education opportunities and resources for all children enrolled in the Affton School District, and for the teachers who support them. Key to this mission is providing classroom resources and inspiring students to attend their first choice colleges.

More on 2016 Hall of Fame inductees:

John Foster Dyess (Class of 1957) is a painter, illustrator, photographer and art instructor. Dyess received his Bachelor degree from the School of Fine Arts at Washington University and began his career as an illustrator for the Military Airlift Command at Scott Air Force Base in Belleville, Ill., before forming first John Dyess Illustration and then later Studio Dyess, LLC, with his wife Carolyn, a graphic designer. While creating visual art through painting, drawing and photography is Dyess’ first occupation, his second is that of an art instructor. He has taught as part of the adjunct faculties of Washington University School of Fine Arts, Webster University, Jefferson College and St. Louis Community College at Meramec. Dyess served as a Board Member and Chair of Publicity and Communication for the St. Louis Artists Guild, and he, along with his wife, serve as curators for the Gallery within Webster Groves Christian Church.

Ronald N. Kohl (Class of 1964) was recognized posthumously for his successful career as a Certified Public Accountant, most recently as a partner in the accounting firm of Rubin, Brown, Gornstein & Company. He earned a Bachelor of Science in accounting, as well as an MBA in finance from the University of Missouri – Columbia. Kohl served as vice president of the Board of Directors for Boys Town of Missouri, was comptroller of the 1991 U.S. Olympic Festival, was a member of the Advisory Board for the School of Accountancy at the University of Missouri – Columbia, and was president of the Board of Trustees of The College School of Webster Groves. Kohl passed away in 1994 following a lifelong battle with Crohn’s disease. His wife, Diane, accepted the recognition in his honor.

Dr. Dale M. Pitt (Class of 1968) is a Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, an honor that is bestowed on less than one percent of members, and an adjunct professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Washington University. He earned both a Bachelor and Masters degree in Aerospace Engineering from the Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, Mo., a Doctor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Washington University, and a professional degree in Aerospace Engineering. As a Boeing Technical Fellow, Pitt has performed research and development in the field of Aeroelasticity and Adaptive Smart Structures for over 30 years. He holds 15 patents in the area of Adaptive Structures, with two patent applications presently awaiting approval, and has published over 80 technical papers in the area of adaptive structures, aeroelasticity and unsteady aerodynamics.

Bert Schmitt (Class of 1960), known as Bert Stratford theatrically, began his career as a singer and actor in 1960 at the famed St. Louis Municipal Opera before moving to New York City in 1962. Schmitt has found success both on stage and off, including work as a producer for Broadway shows, as well as both Off Broadway and touring productions. He has also worked as a consultant, TV packager and show developer, and partnered with screenwriter Romeo Muller on some of the most recognized holiday animated specials including The Twelve Days of Christmas on NBC and The Wish That Changed Christmas on ABC. Schmitt’s work has won a Daytime Emmy Award, a CINE (Council on International Non-theatrical Events) Golden Eagle Award, The Parents Choice Award, and a Grammy Award nomination.

More on the 2016 Outstanding Young Alumni Award recipient:

Markus Golden (Class of 2010) just completed his rookie season in the NFL as an outside linebacker for the Arizona Cardinals. He earned a Bachelor degree from the University of Missouri – Columbia in 2014, the first in his family to graduate from college. As an Affton High School Cougar, Golden holds many records, including most career rushing yards (3,669), most career points scored (288), most single season points scored (174), most single season rushing yards (2,264), and most single game rushing yards (339). While playing football for Mizzou, Golden served as team captain and earned the 2015 Citrus Bowl Most Valuable Player distinction for his final college game. He was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals as a second round pick in 2015, and by mid-season earned a starting defensive position on the team.

For more information on the Affton Education Foundation, visit afftoneducationfoundation.org.