Jamie Hugo Ashby, South Houston High's 2015 Ainsworth Alumni Spirit Award winner, visits the school's nearly completed Hall of History.
Jamie Hugo Ashby, a 1969 graduate of South Houston High School and one of the organizers of the school’s alumni association nearly four years ago, has been named the winner of the 2015 David M. Ainsworth Alumni Spirit Award.
Ashby will be honored during homecoming activities on Oct. 16 along with three new inductees into the South Houston HS Alumni Hall of Honor and three more into the Teacher and Staff Hall of Honor.
An original board member when South Houston’s alumni association was formed in 2012, Ashby wrote the by-laws for the group and served in numerous other capacities that helped facilitate major donations to the school the past three years and produce several successful alumni events.
A former South Houston twirler, Ashby is currently organizing a reunion of former Trojan twirlers for a homecoming performance as part of pre-game festivities on Oct. 16, when the Trojans play Pasadena.
The Ainsworth Award is presented annually to a South Houston alumnus who makes significant contributions to alumni-related endeavors. The award is named after its first recipient, David Ainsworth, a member of the Class of 1968 who helped build and strengthen social media connections for his class and other South Houston alumni until succumbing to cancer in 2013.
Ashby was a major contributor to the reestablishment of an alumni organization at South Houston, the home to an “exes” organization until the late 1960s. She served as vice president of the alumni association for two years and volunteered on key committees, including the communications, homecoming and fund-raising committees, before leaving the board last year.
The association’s fundraising efforts the past four years have brought in roughly $40,000, most of it targeted for various school improvements, including a new band cargo trailer, a new entrance tunnel for football games and a sizable portion of the expenses for the new Hall of History, a campus museum set to open at homecoming.
Ashby has also taken the lead in organizing and promoting reunions and other events for her own class. She served as co-chair for the Class of 1969’s past two reunions and established Facebook and other website tools for her class.
Ashby taught elementary school in the Pasadena ISD for 31 years until her retirement in 2004.
South Houston grads set for induction in the Hall of Honor on Oct. 16 are Nashville record executive and songwriter Larry Willoughby, Class of 1969; Central Texas rancher and businessman Bob Garner, Class of 1971; and comics illustrator and filmmaker Bill Hughes, Class of 1980.
Former teachers to be inducted are Barbara Coon, Ella Gauthier and George Neal.
The homecoming schedule on Oct. 16 includes the grand opening of the Hall of History at 10:30 a.m., the Hall of Honor reception at 12:30 p.m., the alumni/student pep rally at 1:45 p.m. and the football game at 7 p.m.
Formal homecoming ceremonies begin 30 minutes before the game.