An induction ceremony was held in January for three 2015 Harlan County High School graduates as they became the newest members to the prestigious Frank Brittain Academic & Athletic Hall of Fame.
In his opening remarks, Superintendent Mike Howard noted that in only one previous year were three students inducted at the same time. Normally only one or two students meet the criteria and complete the application packet required to be considered for acceptance. This class brought the number of total students inducted since 2004 to 20.
This year, Brody A. Belcher, Sierra Kathryn Hatfield and Jay L. Phillips were selected for the honor by the hall of fame selection committee. The hall of fame was established to honor the memory of longtime Harlan County educator Frank Brittain, whose family provided financial support to make the program a reality.
Howard said, “I am very, very proud of our new members to the hall of fame. I have watched them grow over the years. I emphasize the process is very selective. Having your picture on the plaques out front says to parents and students that you wouldn’t be here if you hadn’t worked hard and done your best in school and activities. It is a great thing to honor these students. The hall of fame is a highlight each year to me.”
The induction ceremony was held at the Central Administrative Offices where the hall of fame is located in the lobby.
Belcher was valedictorian of the class of 2015 with a 4.0 GPA, earning honors graduate recognition. He was a member of the National Honor Society, Beta Club, Future Business Leaders of America, STARS and Gifted Leadership. He participated in dual credit classes, earning both high school and college credits. He designed websites for community organizations. He participated in the Kentucky Governor’s Cup competitions and received numerous awards.
He also received numerous academic honors for excellence in core and elective subjects. He was the recipient of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System’s Commonwealth of Kentucky Scholarship and the W. Bruce Ayers Scholarship. He was honored by both the Kentucky Senate and the House of Representatives for his academic achievements. Belcher earned a composite score of 32 on the ACT. He earned certifications for internet and computing successes. He is pursuing a career in pharmacy and attends Southeast Kentucky Community College. He plans to attend the Appalachian School of Pharmacy. He is the son of Bristol and Vanessa Belcher.
Hatfield was valedictorian of the class of 2015 with a 4.0 GPA and an honors graduate. She served as president of the National Honor Society and was a member of the Beta Club, academic team, talent search, dance team, Gifted Leadership and served on the student committee for the Promise Zone Initiative. She was editor of “The Bear Tracks,” a 2014 Questbridge Scholar and Kentucky Governor’s Scholar. She was named a Kentucky Youth Storytelling Torchbearer and performed at the Kentucky State Fair.
She was named to the University of Kentucky Honors Program and received the Presidential Scholarship, the William C. Parker Diversity Scholarship and the Harlan County Community Scholarship. She earned a total of 28 college hours through the dual credit program and compiled 80 hours of community service during her junior and senior year.
Hatfield recorded a perfect score on the 2007 state KCCT assessment and earned a sixth place finish in the state 2011 in Governor’s Cup Composition. She is majoring in a political science and economics at the University of Kentucky. She is the daughter of Michael and Sabrina Hatfield.
Phillips was valedictorian of the class of 2015 with a 4.0 GPA and an honors graduate, a Kentucky Governor’s Scholar, a National First Tee Scholar, Boy Scouts of America Eagle Scout and member of the Order of the Arrow Scouting Fraternity.
He was an inaugural member of the Appalachian Renaissance Initiative’s Student Senate, a Rogers Scholar, a Senator Jeff Green Scholar, Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership, academic team member and captain, member of the National Honor Society, Beta Club, Gifted Leadership, Student Government Association, attained college and career ready designation, earned the highest score for his class on the ASVAB assessment, a WYMT Mountain Achiever, recipient of the University of Kentucky Presidential Scholarship, William C. Parker Diversity Scholarship and the University of Kentucky Alumni Scholarship and the UK Alumni Book Award for excellence in academics, leadership and community service, the First Tee Kasserian Ingera, Whitfield, Harlan County Community, American Legion and VFW scholarships.
Phillips was a member of the golf team, advancing to the regional tournament two years. He also participated in football and baseball for two years. He had extensive school and community service. He is majoring in Biosystems and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Kentucky. He is the son of Jeff and Karen Phillips