Adams has been a chief fundraiser for the McDonald's Texas Invitational Basketball Tournament since its inception.
Wayne Adams, a towering figure in athletics while a student at South Houston High School and a pillar of Pasadena ISD education endeavors for more than four decades, has been selected as the district’s Distinguished Alumnus for 2016.
Adams, who recently retired from his vice chairman role with the McDonald’s Texas Invitational Basketball Tournament, will be honored by the district at a ceremony on May 3 at the Orozco Professional Development Center.
Adams’s involvement in both the Texas Invitational and the Pasadena ISD Education Foundation was a key to the success of both groups. He was a founding member of the Education Foundation board, the group’s second president and a consultant during the final portion of his 13-year association with the group.
His work with the Education Foundation coincided with 13 years on the organizing committee of the Texas Invitational. Serving as vice chairman for that entire span, he helped raise more than $1.5 million, adding to proceeds used to fund mini-grant programs for Pasadena ISD schools.
Adams graduated from South Houston High in 1967 after a stellar career in football and track. An imposing two-way lineman in football, he earned all-district, All-Greater Houston and all-state honors. A weight man in track, he twice won district titles in the shot put and discus. His senior year, he won the silver medal in the shot at the state meet and won another silver at the Summer Olympics track championships that summer. His school and district record in the shot stood for more than 40 years.
He earned three letters in football and started two seasons at offensive tackle for West Texas State. His teammates included future NFL rushing stars Mercury Morris, who went on to play for the Miami Dolphins, and Duane Thomas, who went on to fame with the Dallas Cowboys.
His work with the Education Foundation and the Texas Invitational began in 2002 after seven years spent as principal of Pasadena High. In 1998, he was named the Region 4 High School Principal of the Year. He served on the board of the Texas Association of Secondary Schools Principals and was regional coordinator for the group for six years.
While at Pasadena High, Adams received the Masonic Lodge’s Community Builder Award. He also served two years as learning coordinator for the Texas Principals Excellent Program, a Texas Education Agency program that mentors principals from low-performing schools.
After college, Adams taught one year in the Clear Creek schools before returning to the Pasadena ISD for good. In all, he spend 42 years as a teacher, coach, assistant principal, principal and consultant for the district.
Adams’s wife, Pat, is a retired teacher. His son, Mike, is an assistant principal at Pasadena Memorial High School. His daughter, Amy Clowers, is an assistant principal at Meador Elementary.
Wayne and Pat Adams have four grandchildren, which – along with golf – take up much of Adams’s retirement time.
The May 3 ceremony to honor Adams is set for 6:30 p.m.
PREVIOUS DISTINGUISHED ALUMNUS AWARD RECIPIENTS
2015 -- John Eddie Williams, Pasadena High, 1972
2014 -- Calvin Powitzky, Pasadena High, 1964
2013 -- Dr. John Morgan, Pasadena High, 1959
2012 -- Frank Young, Pasadena High, 1958
2011 -- Dr. Mike McKinney, Sam Rayburn, 1969
2010 -- Rick Schriever, Sam Rayburn, 1973
2009 -- Dr. Byron Tapley, Pasadena High, 1951
2008 -- James R. Smith, South Houston, 1960
2007 -- Dr. Carlton Horbelt, Pasadena High, 1973
2006 -- Dr. Mary Campbell-Fox, Dobie, 1976
2005 -- J. Michael Solar, Sam Rayburn, 1971
2004 -- Dr. Paul Zanowiak, South Houston, 1965
2003 -- Martin Cominsky, Pasadena High, 1976
2002 -- Dr. Bill Allen, Pasadena High, 1951
2001 -- Bill Shock, Pasadena High, 1954
2000 -- Ben Meador, Pasadena High, 1957
1999 -- Bill McMillin, Pasadena High, 1958
1998 -- Robert Smith, Pasadena High, 1971
1997 -- Larry Forehand, Pasadena High, 1962
1996 -- Jonah Boyd, Pasadena High, 1955
Adams (in red) with his foursome during the McDonald's Texas Invitational Golf Tournament. Pictured with Adams are David Terrell, Kevin Davidson and David Moore.
(Left) Adams with Ben Meador, then president of the McDonald's Texas Invitational during an awards ceremony; (right) Adams with his wife, Pat.
Adams vacations on a golf course in Palm Springs, Calif.