The Ruth Gorham Alumni Award is presented each year to a member of the alumni community whose dedication and service to Graland exemplify Ruth Gorham’s lifelong commitment to the school.
At the inaugural Master Teachers” ceremony in 1998,Phil Hickey, Ruth Gorham's fellow master teacher and dear friend, paid tribute to her ability to “open the eyes of hundreds of youngsters to new cultures, languages, and history. Always, everywhere, she ignited a spark in all of her students, continually nurturing a joy for learning.”
Mrs. Gorham's career at Graland spanned from 1930 until 1992, during which time she taught English and French to countless students and mentored numerous younger teachers. Her fondness for the school knew no bounds, and, due to her long tenure, she became a meticulous chronicler of the School's history. She spent several years writing Graland Country Day School: the First 50 Years, which remains the authoritative history of the school's formative years. Mrs. Gorham passed away in 2004 at the age of 99.
Her deep commitment to the School and involvement with generations of students evolved into a position as the de facto head of alumni relations at a time when there was no such formal position on the staff and no volunteer alumni board. It is particularly fitting that in 2007, the Graland Alumni Association Board passed a resolution to establish a formal tribute to the formidable woman whose role in Graland's history was indeed noteworthy.
Recipients of the Ruth Gorham Alumni Award :
2007 - Diane Gates Wallach '69
2008 - Ann Harrison Hicks '81
2009 - Liza Grant '79
2010 - Ben Parkes '92
2012 - Bruce Rifkin '72
2013 - Ted White '73
2015 - Andrea Sodano '65
2016 - Jim Arneill '66 2017- Philiip W Hickey'81 (honorary alumnus)
I was fortunate to have taught three recipients of this award. I must add: the archive display in the Corkins Center is in honor of Mrs. Gorham -- she was the essence of Graland School.
Graland Country Day School is a private school in Denver, Colorado, serving students in preschool, kindergarten, elementary, and middle school. Founded in Denver in 1924, Graland incorporates a rich, experiential learning approach in a traditional classroom setting, emphasizing the development of globally and socially conscious leaders who excel academically.