Ward Horton ’94, Molly Shaw ’98 and Verle Regnerus Receive Alumni Awards

DA alumni from around the country and spanning the decades joined a Zoom call on April 14 to celebrate this year’s recipients of alumni awards: Ward Horton ’94 (Distinguished Alumni Award); Molly Shaw ’98 (Alumni Service Award); and Verle Regnerus (Faculty and Staff Legacy Award).

“I want to do more than celebrate Ward for his acting success tonight. You see, what I think Ward deserves credit for most of all is the extremely strong work ethic that his parents very clearly instilled in him and his two sisters from an early age. … Ward has been unafraid to take on small parts, as long as they earned him a learning experience or a new connection with a writer or director or producer or fellow actor. One after the other, those individual stepping-stone moments have turned themselves into an admirable career.”

Garrett Putman ’94, introducing Distinguished Alumni Award recipient Ward Horton ’94


“[As CEO and president of Communities in Schools of Charlotte-Mecklenburg] Molly acknowledged that stories needed to be heard. She was just the person to listen and ask the right questions even of herself. She shared openly to deepen the bond and bridge the gap with the right people in her organization and she built trust and she shifted the power. … She reflects on her own privilege, power and race and carries a now visible backpack. And continues to use it to help others and continues to unpack it and learn its contents. She knows the work and growth is never finished in order to make appropriate change.”

Katie Ryan Amick Kantz ’98, introducing Alumni Service Award recipient Molly Shaw ’98


“He’s a perfect colleague — he’s smart, he listens, he’s funny and he’s always willing to help. He goes the extra mile. He puts in hours, he thinks strategically for the students. He doesn’t worry about the recognition or who gets the credit or how long the week has already been, or what’s the stipend for that, he just goes the extra mile for the students. My advice to any young faculty member at DA or anywhere would be to be humble, work hard, work for the students, be like Verle.”

Steve Engebretsen, Middle School PE teacher and former director of athletics, introducing Faculty and Staff Legacy Award winner Verle Regnerus, Upper School assistant director, registrar, math teacher and former varsity baseball coach

Watch the award recipients’ acceptance speeches in a recording of the Virtual Spring Alumni Awards.