Mercer Island Schools’ Pathfinder Alumni Award

  • The Pathfinder Awards, established in 2016, celebrate graduates of Mercer Island High School whose achievements, strength of character, and citizenship inspire and challenge today’s youth.
    The nomination process for the 2023 Pathfinder Award is now open. Nominate a MIHS alumnus using this form.
    The Mercer Island School District presented the 2022 Pathfinder Awards to two graduates of Mercer Island High School whose achievements, strength of character, and citizenship inspire and challenge today’s youth to make significant contributions to humankind.

    The 2022 Pathfinder Award recipients were:

    Matt Galvin, co-owner of Pagliacci Pizza, MIHS Class of 1987 and Kirk Robinson - Posthumous Selection, Bothell Fire Department Lieutenant, MIHS Class of 1995

    “The work both Matt and Kirk have done to give back to their community are great examples for today’s youth,” said Superintendent Donna Colosky. “To see what these two Pathfinders have done shows how much impact our students can have in communities big and small. This impact is especially important now as we have all navigated our way through the Covid-19 pandemic and the examples set by our Pathfinders shows our students the example that support from dedicated individuals is integral to communities thriving under all circumstances.”

    The 2022 Pathfinders were honored at the Mercer Island Schools Foundation’s Spring for Schools Showcase and Auction Virtual Event on Sunday, April 24

    The deadline to submit a nomination for the 2023 Pathfinder Award is at the end of February. As part of the nomination, submitters will be asked to tell the Pathfinder Award committee how the nominee has contributed to society as a Pathfinder through their service and leadership. Additional documentation such as news stories, awards and honors, other letters of support, photos, CV or résumé may be sent to

    Pathfinder Award recipients have contributed to society in meaningful ways through their service, leadership, and creativity in our communities. Graduates of Mercer Island High School have impacted the world in a variety of fields, including but not limited to the following areas: the arts and athletics; business; education; entertainment; law; medicine; the military; philanthropy and volunteerism; public service; religion; scholarship and science. 
    Pathfinder Bridge

    Growing up on an island with committed schools and residents, they embraced the larger world around them and pushed the boundaries of their potential. They are our inventors and artists—imaginative and creating the future. They understand the global context in which we live today. All are pathfinders who aspire to a better way of living for humankind. They discovered that path, or showed others the way. 

    Program objectives

    1. To recognize distinguished alumni from Mercer Island Schools and to inspire students and residents with their accomplishments; and

    2. To create a network where alumni and students feel they are part of an extraordinary global community who support each other and are dedicated to making the world a better place for humankind.

    Criteria for selection

    • The Pathfinder honors our graduates’ remarkable impact in a variety of fields, including the arts, athletics, business, education, entertainment, law, medicine, the military, philanthropy & volunteerism, public service, religion, scholarship and science. 
    • Candidates must be graduates of Mercer Island High School and have graduated at least 10 years prior.
    • Any person may submit a nomination, except for Selection Committee members.
    • Posthumous nominations will be accepted.
    • Nominations for 2023 Pathfinder Awards require submission of the district's nomination form, which will be released in November of 2023. 
    • All information submitted will be considered confidential by the Selection Committee.

    Selection process

    Nominations will be vetted by a Selection Committee of teachers, residents, business leaders, alumni, and school officials from the district and the Mercer Island Schools Foundation. The committee may request additional documentation if needed. The Selection Committee reserves the right to reject any or all nominations. Individuals not selected this year will remain eligible for two years following the initial nomination process, without requiring a new submission.
    2023 Pathfinder Committee
    Andrew Howison – MIHS Junior. Student Representative to the School Board
    Annabelle Hegarty – MIHS Sophomore
    Daniel Becker – MIHS Class of 2001. Parent of future MISD student.
    Ian Henry – MIHS Class of 1991, Communications Coordinator MISD
    Tammy Shoop – Executive Director, Mercer Island Schools Foundation
    Vivek Mehta – MIHS Class of 1989. Parent of two MISD students.
    Several more committee members to be added.
    For more information, contact Ian Henry, Communications and Alumni Relations Coordinator, 206-236-4514. 

    Pathfinder Award Recipients

Mercer Island Pathfinder Award Recipients