Alumni group making second round of inductions to Hall of Honors

CNJ staff

For the second year, the Clovis Municipal Schools Foundation and Alumni Association is making inductions into its Hall of Honors.

The induction banquet is scheduled for 6 p.m. April 30 at the Clovis High School cafeteria. Tickets are $30 for individuals, $50 for couples and $150 for tables of six, and are available at the CMS Administration office.

Jan Cox, executive director for the foundation, said the banquet was created soon after the foundation was formed three years ago.

“There was a discussion,” Cox said, “although I wasn’t part of it, about ways to honor our alumni … and honor people who have made a major contribution to Clovis Schools.”

According to a release from CMS, the purpose of the awards is “to recognize and honor former graduates of Clovis High School whose achievements, strengths of character and citizenship serve as models to inspire and challenge today’s students. The Foundation also gives a Top Cat Award to recognize and honor former faculty members and other individuals whose service to and in support of Clovis Municipal Schools has been outstanding.

The Hall of Honor display is located at Clovis High School.

This year’s inductees include:

Randy Harris (Business and Industry): Harris, a 1974 CHS graduate, is CEO and president of the Bank of Clovis. Harris was named Clovis’ Citizen of the Year in 2004 and received the Governor’s New Mexico Distinguished Public Service Award in 2006, largely for his efforts to help Cannon Air Force Base avoid closure. He was named to the Eastern New Mexico University Board of Regents in 2009. He has sponsored the CHS 4.0 Senior Recognition Banquet since 1987.

Brig. Gen. Ben T. Robinson (Government and Service): Robinson, a 1965 CHS graduate, entered the Air Force in 1973. Prior to entering the Air Force, he served as a helicopter aircraft commander for the U.S. Army in South Vietnam, where he flew 350 combat missions. He retired as Commander of the 552nd Air Control Wing at Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma, in 2002.

John Harris (Sports and Entertainment): Harris, a 1973 CHS graduate, is the new coach of the Amarillo Sox. A three-time All-American at Lubbock Christian University, Harris was drafted by the California Angels and played professionally for nine years, spending three years in the major leagues with the Angels from 1979 to 1981. He has spent more than 20 years managing and coaching in professional baseball. He was inducted into the Lubbock Christian University Hall of Honor in 1997.

Norman and Vi Brady Petty (Sports and Entertainment, awarded posthumously): Norman (1945 CHS graduate) and Vi (1946) Petty were hit recording artists, independent record producers, and pioneers who helped shape modern pop music and changed the sound of rock ‘n’ roll.

They founded the Norman Petty Trio, along with guitarist Jack Vaughn. The Pettys are most famous for their recording studio in Clovis.

Norvil Howell (Top Cat): Howell was the CHS band director from 1956 to 1980 and the CMS director of music from 1980 to 1997. His high school bands performed with distinction and honor in New Mexico, six other states and Washington, D.C.

He was named to the New Mexico Activities Association Hall of Fame in 2004, and was the 1988 New Mexico Music Educators Association Music Educator of the Year and a 2001 NMMEA Hall of Fame award winner.

Inaugural Hall of Honors inductees were:

• Alvy Ray (Jerry) Smith, Business and Industry Category

• Nick Brady, Top Cat

• Justice Nathan Hecht, Government and Public Service Category

• Cecil M. Davis, Sports and Entertainment Category (awarded posthumously)