Reunion Evening & Annual Meeting Cancelled due to COVID-19 Concerns

After careful consideration for the health and safety of our Alumni, the PHS Alumni Scholarship Association Board, has made the difficult decision to cancel this year’s Friday night Meet & Greet and Annual Saturday Luncheon event that was scheduled for June 26 and 27.

Please read our full announcement here.

We are still awarding scholarships this year to the Class of 2020 along with supporting our continuing scholarship recipients. If you would like to support us, please contact us here.

Spring 2021 Newsletter


Time again for another newsletter (well past time). Hopefully this finds everyone healthy, happy and virus free. Due to the Covid 19, like everyone else, we have had to cancel all of our plans for last year as well as most of this year but we still need a newsletter update.

Below is a picture of the new High School. Different huh? For those of you that have not been able to see the new school, I will give you a little information about it. The new build-ing sits south of the old school directly across the street from the cemetery. You can see in the picture, on the right side is the gym and theater. They will both be remodeled. The new school is beautiful and state of the art.

Here is our new stadium.  Wow, how different.  It is located behind the school approximately where it was.  The Alumni Association made a donation to the stadium and we will be included on the honor plaque.

For those of you who do not know the names of the current scholarship recipients, some are four year and some are one year:

For those of you who do not know the names of the current scholarship recipients, some are four year and some are one year:

Troy Altunel—four year                                                Jesus Ledezma— four year

Amna Hoorain  –  four year                                          Kassidy Hood  –  four year

Savannah Lyon  –  one year                                          Alexa Marcias Montoya  –  one year

Hannah MacLennen  –  one year                                  Aldo Meza  –  one year

Brandon Morrison  –  one year

PHS Alumni Scholarship Board:

Sharla Mankins Draheim-Connell – President – 541-890-1289 – sdfoxy@gmail.com                      Nancy Day Olson-Jones – Vice President – 541-944-2397 – nancyolson@charter.net

Darlene Flagg Ditsworth – Treasurer – 503-330-3278 – gmapapa5@gmail.com               

Julie Hague-Gray – Secretary – 541-261-7896- jhaguegray@yahoo.com

Julie Brabbin Sparks – Scholarship Director – 541-944-5003 – gmafarks@gmail.com      

Janie Chisum Moore – Fundraising Chair – 541-941-6013 – janiemoore62@gmail.com

Linda Gleim Rombach – Directory Chair – 541-301-5791 – 4sunnyriver@gmail.com

Dorothy Cotton – Newsletter/Legal – 541-261-5118 – dorothy@mind.net                                      Doug McGeary – Historian – 541-778-3350 – doug@douglasmmcgeary.com                             Othar Richey – Past President – 541-840-5221 – richeyothar@yahoo.com

If anyone knows of someone with a new address and may not be receiving our newsletter, please let us know.  Please contact any of the board members with the information or drop us a note by mail ( P.O. Box 638, Phoenix, OR 975354).

Classmates that have passed away since the last newsletter: Carol Anderson (63); Carolyn Anderson (64); Lewis Bertrand (teacher); James Blount (73); Helen Brisco (40); Doreen Feeler Burnette (55T); Lloyd Campbell (65), Agnes Chirgwin (teacher); Harold Compton (school board); Patricia Arnold Commins (66); Bob Dawson (66),  Gary Denzer (49); David Dudley (64); Evelyn Ferns (47); Stan Ferns (48); Marvin Frazier (59); Michael Graham (66); Dale Haggard(58);Bob Hearn (48); Mike Hills (70); Gloria Bannister Houston (44); Shirley Kannasto (teacher); John Lucas (80); Helen Marris (71); Janice Hawkins Mason (67); William Matthews (03); Carol McCay (teacher); Jill Bang-Knudsen Morrison (59); Wanda Norton (50); Naomi Parton (48); George  Quinowski (teacher); Patrick Reichstein (88); Brad Richey (90); Charles Roberts Sr. (school board); Rick Rose (75); Cathy Maloney Saunders (81); Richard Seymour (62); Bonnie Steenhuis Sweeny (65); Fred Swingle (64); Lisa Anderson Thorp (83); Dieter Trost (55); Marjorie Vroman (42); Alice Weaver Wooten (teacher).   If you know of any other classmates we have lost during the last year, please let us know.

As most of you already know the PHS Alumni Scholarship Association Board, has not been able to hold any of our Fund-Raising events since February 2020. This includes our Friday night Meet and Greet, Annual Luncheon, Homecoming Week, and our Annual Scholarship Auction. The Board made the difficult decision to cancel group events, hoping to keep our Community, Alumni, and our loyal supporters safe and healthy during this pandemic mak-ing it a top priority.

We are disappointed that we are unable to hold Fund Raising events to raise money for our Scholarship program, but we know it is the right decision based on the information we have today regarding the COVID-19 virus.

The Board has voted to continue to support our scholarship recipients through this difficult time and now more than ever, we THANK YOU for your continued generous donations and support which allows us to help these deserving PHS students reach their education goals. In addition, this year, we have been selected to administer donated funds for a specific Scholarship for deserving Seniors that were displaced by the recent fires. Our Fire Relief Scholarship Award will have a separate form to complete for consideration of these “Fire Relief Scholarship” funds. Your donations can be earmarked as “Fire Relief Scholar-ship” or our general fund for “Scholarships.”

If you would like to support the Scholarship or Fire Relief program through donations in lieu of the Annual Fund Raiser events, or simply wish to donate, that would be greatly appreciated more than ever. We currently support nine (9) PHS Students in their educational goals. In the past, we achieved this through our fundraising events and your generous donations. Please send donations to the following address:
PHS Alumni Scholarship Association
PO Box 638
Phoenix, OR 97535

Please check your email, mail, or visit our Facebook page (Phoenix High School Alumni Scholarship Association) or website (www.phoenixtalentalum.com) as we will provide up-dates for anticipated 2021-2022 events as Oregon opens its doors to large group gatherings. We are still hoping we can hold the following events:

Homecoming, Parade, Tailgate Party and Homecoming Game. – October 2021
4th Annual Alumni Auction – December 4, 2021
Directory Update – We were getting ready to distribute the 2020 update but due to the recent Valley fires we have put this off in efforts to get additional updates of those that were displaced. Hopefully, look for the new Alumni Directory in 2022. All proceeds from the Alumni Directory go to the Scholarship Fund. If you need to change your address contact a Board Member.

If you are interested in volunteering on events or would like to be a part of our Alumni Board, we would love to have your support and input. Please contact a Board member and join our team.
Again, thank you for your support and we hope to see you at an event in 2021 -2022.

Spring 2020 Newsletter

Spring is here in the valley again and time for our newsletter. We are also in the process of getting ready for our yearly get-together and luncheon in June. In these uncertain times, we won’t know for some time if it will happen. However, we are thinking positive and are planning as though this horrible virus will be over and life will be back to normal by June. If it is not, we will make the necessary adjustments. Keep up to date with us on our Facebook page and or web site (addresses later in newsletter).

This year we will be celebrating the classes of 1970, 1960, and 1950. Those folks with 50, 60, and 70 years since attending Phoenix or Talent High School. That seems like a long time, but it really sneaks up fast.

Our weekend for celebration will be on Friday June 26 and Saturday June 27. Starting on Friday, there will be a get together at Centennial Golf Course on North Phoenix Road starting at 5:00 PM. We meet in a large tent on their beautiful grounds with lots of fresh air and a little breeze. There will be a no-host bar and dinner. The dinner includes hamburgers, hot dogs, potato salad, cookies, and fruit. The cost will be $15.00 a person. No sign-up is necessary ahead of time. Just come and visit with all your friends and
school mates. Taking part in the bar and food is totally optional.

The luncheon on Saturday will again take place at Rogue Valley Manor 1200 Mira Mar Drive in Medford. The cost is the same this year at $25.00 per person. Reservation for the luncheon are required so please send them in before June 17th. No luncheon tickets can be sold after that date. On Saturday we will meet starting at 10:00 AM and have time to visit and catch up with old friends for a couple of hours. Then, at 12:00 noon, Sharla our President, will call the meeting to order and we will enjoy a delicious buffet lunch. When we are finished eating, Sharla will introduce the board and share with us what the Association has been doing during the last year. We will also get a chance to meet our scholarship recipients and hear about their plans for the future.

During the meeting we will have an opportunity to hear what the honored classes have been doing during their years since leaving Phoenix High School.

Please plan to attend. The reservation for the luncheon on Saturday June 7th is below. Please return it to: PHS Alumni Scholarship Association P.O. Box 698 Phoenix, Oregon 97535.

Luncheon RSVP

Our biggest fundraiser of the year took place this year at the Phoenix High School in the Commons on Saturday, December 7th. It was a tremendous success allowing us to help even more students with providing higher education through scholarships. We had donations from numerous businesses in the valley as well as from our own community. High school students were a big help during the evening of the auction helping us keep things running smoothly. We couldn’t have done it without everyone’s help.
The planning is well underway for this year’s auction to be held Saturday, December 5th, 2020. The auction will again take place in the High School Commons, however, it will be the last year at this site. With the building of the new high school well underway, there will be a new and bigger commons for next year. If you would like to be involved with this year’s auction; either by donating an item or items, donating your time, or purchasing a table ($100.00 with seating for 8), please contact someone on the PHS Alumni Scholarship board or emailing the association. This year it should be bigger and better than ever.
Other functions planned for this year include: the Homecoming parade and the Tailgate party. More information on those will be shared at the luncheon in June.

Our Current Scholarship Recipients:

  • Troy Altunel 2017-2021
  • Amna Hoorain 2018-2022
  • Kassidy Hood 2019-2023
  • Ruby Peral 2019-2020
  • Miguel Ceron 2016-2020
  • Cedrus King 2016-2020
  • Jesus Ledezma 2017-2021
  • Julissa Villasenor 2019-2020
  • Kade Beer – 2019-2020

If anyone knows of any changes to address and/or names, please let us know so we can keep our information as correct as possible.
We are also always looking for help with our organization. If anyone is interested in helping, being on a committee or just doing project work, please fill out this form. Remember you do not need to live locally
to help.

Hope to see everyone in June.

Your newsletter editor,

Dorothy Cotton

Fall 2019 Newsletter

Time again to report on the happenings of the summer and fall.  Then a look forward to winter and 2020.

We had a great time at the get-together and luncheon in June.  This year we celebrated the 50th, 60th and 70th year anniversary of leaving Phoenix High School.  We had a great turnout.  There were many people from the celebrated classes as well as many from other years.  For those of you who couldn’t make it, I will recap a little of the happenings.

On Friday June 28, there was a casual get-together so everyone could just come and visit. The Centennial Golf Course provided a large outside tent on their beautiful grounds.  They also provided a lot of good food and drinks for purchase.

On Saturday June 29, at the Rogue Valley Manor, we started the day at 10 AM with a meet and greet.  It was so much fun to see everyone and have time to visit.  At noon we all enjoyed a delicious buffet.  When we finished eating, we had a short meeting.

The classes we honored this year were 1969, 1959, and 1949.  It was interesting to hear what everyone has been doing since their days at Phoenix/Talent High School.

Also attending the luncheon were 9 of the 10 scholarship recipients.  They all had a chance to speak and let us all know of their goals, what a great bunch of young people.  Included were:  Maria Mena 2015-2019; Miguel Ceron 2016-2020; Cedrus King 2016-2020; Jesus Ledezma  2017-2021; Troy Altunel 2017-2021; Amna Hoorain 2018-2022; Kassidy Hood 2019-2023; Ruby Peral 2019-2020; Julissa Villasenor 2019-2020.  Kade Beer 2019– 2020 was unable to attend as he was participating in a baseball game in Salem.

Our guest speaker was Mr. Toby Walker, the principal of the high school.  He has been very supportive of our organization and continues to help us.

The PHS Alumni Scholarship board was also introduced.  They include: Sharla Mankins Draheim-Connell President; Nancy Day Olson-Jones Vice-President; Julie Hague-Gray Secretary (absent); Darlene Flagg Ditsworth Treasurer; Dorothy Cotton Newsletter editor; Ron Williams Scholarship Chairman; Breeze Chapman PHS/Alumni Liaison; Polly Fowler Farrimond member-at-large; Celine Farrimond Media; Aleta Logan Barlett Directory (absent) ; Janie Chisum Moore Silent Auction Chairperson; Historian position is vacant at the present time.

An election of officers was held.  The position of President and Vice-President were due to be voted on this year.  Since no one wished to fill either position, Sharla and Nancy agreed to serve another term.  It was with a unanimous vote that Sharla Mankins Draheim-Connell will remain President and Nancy Day Olson-Jones will remain Vice-President.   They have both done such a tremendous job and we do appreciate them both.

For more information about the luncheon, pictures, etc., please check out our Facebook page: “Phoenix High School Pirates Alumni”.

Other happenings:

In October the Alumni Association participated in the Phoenix City/Homecoming Parade.  It was a lot of fun and our trolley was full.

The Tailgate party was a great success with a good turnout.  Everyone enjoyed chili and cornbread and then watched the Homecoming game.


The next fundraiser planned by the association is the Annual PHS Alumni Scholarship Auction.  This year it will be held Saturday, December 7th.   The auction will take place in the high school commons with the doors opening at 5:00 PM.  The silent auction will be from 5:00—6:30 PM.  There will be over 75 baskets and items in the silent auction.  Dinner will begin at 6:00 PM., provided by the Olive Garden Restaurant.   At 7:30 PM the live auction will begin with lots of items to auction off thanks to a long list of friends and sponsors.

Anyone interested in attending the auction; tables are being sold for $100.00 per table with seating for 8.  There are also seats available for parties of one or two.  Call Sharla to reserve your seat or table:  541-890-1289.   To pay for the items purchased, cash, check or credit card will be accepted.

For more information or to see the reunion pictures, please check us out on:

Facebook: Phoenix High School Pirates Alumni

E-mail: board@phoenixtalentalum.com


Now it is time to start planning for next year.   Reservations have already been made for the Friday evening Get-Together.  We will meet again at the Centennial Golf Course on North Phoenix Road June 26, 2020.

The Annual Alumni Luncheon and meeting will be Saturday June 27, 2020 at the Rogue Valley Manor.  We will be honoring the classes of 1970, 1960, 1950, etc.  

Mark your calendars and watch for more information in the Spring Newsletter.


Above is a conceptual drawing of how the new Phoenix/Talent High School will look.  For those of you who  haven’t heard, a bond was passed a couple of years ago to build a new High School in the same area as the old one.  The gymnasium and theater will remain but everything else will be new.  The current High School was originally built in 1948-1949 and has undergone numerous remodels since that date.  I’m not sure which remodel the picture on the front of the newsletter is but this is the look I remember.  The first phase of the building was started in June of this year.  It consists of a two story building just south of the current building.  The entire project is scheduled to be finished December 2020.   


The classmates that have passed away that we have heard about since out last newsletter include:  Cathy Beeson Weber (74); Joan Kennedy (74); Crystal Cyphers (2003); Caroline Beeson (68); Rosemary Robertson Sauer (66); David Dudley (64); John Stewart (Teacher); John Smook (Teacher); Duane Smith (Teacher); Matt Zoll (91);  Scott White (2003).   If anyone knows of anyone else, please let us know.

If anyone knows of any changes to addresses and/or names, please let us know so we can keep our information as correct as possible.  Also, if anyone is receiving this newsletter by regular mail and would like to receive it by e-mail, please send us your e-mail address.  This will help us keep costs down.

Happy Holidays

Your Newsletter Editor, Dorothy Cotton

Save the Date!

Our 3rd Annual Auction will be held in the Phoenix High School Commons at 5:00pm on December 7th. To sponsor a table for 8 ($100), contact us to ensure your seat is saved!

Click here for a form to reserve a table as a group or business.

We are still accepting donation for our auction, if you are interested please send us an email at board@phoenixtalentalum.com!

All proceeds from the silent and live auction will go to our scholarship fund, which provides talented PHS graduates pursuing higher education at a 4 year university, community college or vocational/trade school.