The UDHS Wall of Fame


There is an open nomination for the Wall of Fame every year from March to May 1. When all the nominations are gathered, a selection committee screens  the nominees looking for the very best candidates-- alumni who are inspirational to UDHS students. Dan McGarry, assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction, put it this way,“This is what you want to be when you grow up; this is Upper Darby royalty.” 

Created in 1979, only six alumni were inducted until 1982. A centennial celebration of the school in 1995 brought in seven new members, and the tradition has continued since then.  The Class of 1966 has 3 inductees:

James Morris -  1999

In his senior year at UDHS, James J. Morris was one of 16 National Merit Scholars. He is a Princeton graduate, earning a degree in aeronautical engineering.   He later received a Master’s Degree in management from Stanford. He was the technology manager for Boeing 234/Chinook in Philadelphia and then became general manager of the Twin Aisle Programs.  He currently serves as the general manager of the Twin Aisle Programs at Boeing in Seattle, Washington.



Cindy Dee Holms -  2002

Cindy Dee Holms, a Delaware County educator for 32 years, began her career as a teacher and a counselor.   Later she also worked as a health care provider and a public speaker. Cindy Dee Holms is now the author of books that help children and their parents with difficult issues. She has published Red Balloons Fly High to help resolve grief issues, Slaying the Virus Villains to teach disease prevention skills, and A Third Serving of Chicken Soup for the Soul.



Virginia Zakian - 2006

Dr. Virginia (Ginger) A. Zakian, renown research scientist and teacher, is The Harry C. Wiess Professor in the Life Sciences, an endowed chair, at Princeton University. She is a Professor of molecular biology at Princeton, as well. Her research interests include telomeres, DNA helicases, chromosome stability, and genome integrity. She is author of over 115 scientific publications, has trained 75+ students and post-doctoral fellows, and has been an invited speaker at hundreds of meetings and seminars throughout the United States, Europe, Asia and South America. Ginger is a fellow in the American Academy for the Advancement of Science and the American Academy of Microbiology. The National Institutes of Health gave her the Merit Award, an unsolicited award for continuous high-level contributions given to fewer than 3 scientists in the United States per year. Dr. Zakian has more than 15 endowed lectureships and has worked to promote women and minorities in science. She chairs a faculty taskforce at Princeton to attract and retain highly talented women faculty in the natural sciences and engineering. She has also served as an advisor to the National Institutes of Health and other agencies. Somehow she has found time to also mentor the junior faculty in molecular biology at Princeton.

Upon graduation from Upper Darby High School in 1966, Zakian earned a degree from Cornell University in 1970 and a Ph.D. from Yale University in 1975.