Lee Seras - Morris Knolls Faculty Honoree Lee distinguished himself as a four year football and baseball player at Morris Hills HS (’64) and was awarded the ECAC Student-Athlete Award while at Muhlenberg College in 1968. He went on to teach Social Studies at Morris Knolls HS for 39 years before retiring in 2007. He also coached baseball and football while there. Lee was a sought-after certified official for baseball, basketball and volleyball and a professional baseball scout for the Toronto Blue Jays, Houston Astros, Tampa Devil Rays and Cincinnati Reds. Since 1985, he has been the co-founder and co-director of the Joe Wladyka College Baseball Recruiting Service.
Former students still write to Lee to express their appreciation for his encouragement and enthusiasm. In and out of the classroom, he inspired a positive attitude in others. When asked where he works, Lee would always reply, “I don’t work, I go to school everyday.”
John F. Kwiatkoski - Morris Hills Faculty Honoree
Over the course of his 32 years at Morris Hills HS, John served as educator, football coach, guidance counselor and principal. During his eighteen years as principal (1968 to 1986), he oversaw tremendous growth, not only in the population of the high school, but of innovative programs in academics, athletics and guidance programs that still benefit today’s students.
Throughout his life, John emphasized community and citizenship in the classroom, on the football field, and in guiding young people to meet their future challenges. The John F. Kwiatkoski Foundation, started by his family and friends to honor his memory, continues to benefit the high school community through annual senior scholarships.
Wendy Chesnov Dratler - Morris Knolls Alumna HonoreeAn early graduate of Morris Knolls (’74), Wendy chose a career devoted to educating children with special needs as a special educator and reading specialist. Over a period of ten years Wendy worked in public and private schools, treatment centers and afterschool learning centers.
Wendy was Director of the Center for Special Education at the Jewish Education Association. She provided consultation to principals and teachers, and founded and supervised school programs for children with learning differences. The Center thrived through grant funding she acquired over a period of 18 years. Wendy continues to serve children through her private practice consulting business, Teaching Innovation by Design. In the words of a colleague, when it comes to supporting children with special needs, “Wendy never gives up.”
Gene F. Feyl - Morris Hills Alumnus HonoreeGene Feyl has dedicated his life to public service. A Morris Hills alumnus (’63) his college education was interrupted by service to his country. He enlisted in the Navy during the Vietnam War, serving in communications intelligence. He was first elected to the Denville Board of Education, serving 9 years, 8 as vice-president. Gene later served on the town council for 6 years and was elected Mayor of Denville from 2000-2008. In 2007 he was elected Morris County Freeholder and became director in 2009. At the state level, he was 1st vice-president of the NJ State League of Municipalities and a member of the NJ Clean Air Council. He is also vice-chairman of the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority. Gene remains active locally as a member of Kiwanis and the American Legion. In the words of his daughter, Dana, “(Gene) has made a positive difference in the lives of those who are privileged to know him.”