Washington High School honors 3 alumni into Hall of Merit

Three distinguished alumni, all with links to education and research, will be inducted in May into the George Washington High School Alumni Association Hall of Merit. They are:
• Dr. James Bindon, class of Spring 1965, anthropology researcher and award-winning professor;
• Dr. Arthur Nonomura, Fall 1968, botany researcher and professor with numerous patented discoveries;
• Karl Seyer-Ochi, 1982, internationally-recognized, award-winning Washington teacher of economics, American democracy and culinary geography.

Bindon, Ph.D., is a biological anthropologist who has studied human growth and health from the perspective of human adaptability, focusing on the interactions between biology and culture and examining the health repercussions of modernization, for more than two decades. His research has included Samoans, Mississippi Choctaw Indians and African-Americans in Alabama. He is currently working with colleagues on a project in Hawaii.

His research papers have been published in dozens of scholarly journals. Bindon joined the University of Alabama's Anthropology Department in 1978 and chaired the department from 1993 to 1998. He retired from the university in 2008.

Bindon earned his Bachelors degree from UC Berkeley and his masters and doctorate degrees from Penn State University.

Nonomura, Ph.D., has conducted research since the 1970s on improving plant yield and on the utilization of algae to clean water and in the production of fuel, resulting in numerous worldwide patents which may have far-reaching significance in the production of food and energy.

Nonomura earned his Bachelors Degree from UC Santa Cruz and his masters and doctorate degrees from UC Berkeley. He is currently a researcher at Scripps Institute of Oceanography at UC San Diego.

Seyer-Ochi has been teaching at Washington High School since 1988. His innovative methods of teaching social studies and economics have earned him many educator awards, as well as acclaim from colleagues. His unconventional and visionary use of analogies to convey challenging concepts has inspired students of all levels to enduringly grasp these concepts and has attracted international interest.

Seyer-Ochi earned a degree in economics from Columbia University before deciding to become an educator.

The inductees will be twice honored on Wednesday, May 19, first during the school day's senior awards assembly, followed by the Hall of Merit Induction Dinner at the Cliff House's Terrace Room beginning at 6 p.m., with master of ceremonies/alumni association president and KGO radio host John Rothmann. Tickets may be purchased with personal checks through the mail, or with credit cards by phone or online.

For more information, send an e-mail to [email protected]. For tickets online, go to the website at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/98207.