Skip To Main Content

Pathfinder Awards

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 closed on February 28.

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 February 28. 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. 

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

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
  • 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.





Matt Galvin, 1987



Kirk Robinson, 1995








Kathy Taylor, 1984



Hunter Goodman, 1988



Mickey Rowe, 2007





Robin Bennett, 1977



Steve Hawes, 1968








Caroline Fraser, 1979



Blake Nordstrom, 1978



Pete Nordstrom, 1980



Erik Nordstrom, 1981






Dawn Bennett, 1982



Mary Lindquist, 1967



Marty Lott, 1968



Joel McHale, 1991






Trish Coffey, 1979



Leslie Hendricks Fall, 1981



Adrian Hanauer, 1984







Warren Brown, 1988



Earle Canfield, 1965



Dariush Mozaffarian, 1987



Michelle Flowers Taylor, 1988