A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Holmes High School names Person of Year, three Hall of Distinction honorees, Young Alumnus winners

Holmes High School has an outstanding history of students who have made significant differences in their communities. Five of those former students will be honored for their contributions during the second annual Hall of Honors event from 6-9 p.m., October 10, at the Drees Pavilion.

The Covington Education Foundation and Covington Independent Public Schools last year launched the Hall of Honors – an amazing event that combines the foundation’s Person of the Year, Hall of Distinction honorees and the Holmes High School Young Alumnus winners.

The Hall of Honors event brings alumni and the entire community come together to benefit future graduates of Holmes High School. The tributes and award ceremony will make you laugh and sometimes cry.

For tickets or more information, please contact Janice Krumwiede at 859-392-3182 or janice.krumwiede@covington.kyschools.us

Garry Edmondson
2018 Person of the Year

Since graduating from Holmes High School in 1965, Edmondson has pursued a career as both a lawyer and a public servant. He earned his Juris Doctor from the University of Kentucky Law School in 1972 and was admitted to the Bar the same year.

Garry Edmondson

Edmondson initially practiced with Spalding, Bubenzer, and Grause. In 1975, he opened his own law firm, still located in Covington. Since then, Edmondson has served the community and represented every kind of public entity – from cities to school boards – imaginable. Along the way, he also was elected to the Ft. Wright City Council.

Edmondson’s most visible position came in 1993 when he was elected Kenton County Attorney – a job he held for 21 years. But Edmondson’s community involvement extends well beyond the political realm. He freely gives of his time to community organizations, having served as a member of the Northern Kentucky Mental Health Association, the Optimist Club, Ft. Mitchell Lions Club and Covington Lions Clubs. He has been District Chairman for the Boy Scouts of America, Assistant Scout Master; and a grade school basketball coach at his parish, St Agnes Church in Ft. Wright.

He has received a variety of local, regional and statewide awards, including County Attorney of the Year. Edmondson remains connected to Holmes. He delivered the Holmes commencement address a few years ago. In addition, Edmondson started a minority internship for Holmes students who are interested in careers in law. He has designed educational opportunities for the public to learn how local government works and promoted patriotism by conducting an annual calendar contest for students.

Edmondson and his wife, Joyce, are the proud parents of four children. They enjoy spending time with their 13 grandchildren.

Charles Douglas Bramlage
Holmes Hall of Distinction

Shortly after graduating from Holmes High School in 1965, Bramlage enlisted in the United States Air Force. Crediting skills he learned from his typing class at Holmes, he became an office clerk while working in the Headquarter Squadron at Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio.

Doug Bramlage

He received an accounting degree from Northern Kentucky University in 1980. Bramlage received his certification as a Certified Public Accountant from the state of Ohio in 1993.
He started his accounting practice out of the office of attorney Garry Edmondson, a friend and classmate. His firm, Bramlage Business Advisory Services, provides business services, specializing in small businesses as their remote Chief Financial Officer. Bramlage also received his license as an insurance representative.

He has held several offices for the Public Accountant Society of Ohio, including president and vice president for the local chapter and treasurer at the state level. Bramlage also serves as treasurer for the Tom Ellis Athletic Memorial Foundation at Holmes, which was instrumental in securing funds for the new all-purpose field at Holmes.

On June 21, 1965, Bramlage met Cindy at a dance at Holy Cross High School. They married in 1969 after his tour of duty. They are the proud parents their daughter, Rachelle and two grandchildren, Carter and Beckett.

William L. Scheyer
Holmes Hall of Distinction

Scheyer is the former president of Skyward, the engine behind myNKY, a community-driven five-year strategic work plan designed to elevate Northern Kentucky. Before Skyward, Scheyer served as president of Southbank Partners, Inc. He served as president of Skyward and its predecessor, Vision 2015.

William Scheyer

As president, Scheyer was responsible for the strategic direction and operations of Skyward, as well as for the development and execution of Northern Kentucky’s strategic plan. Under his leadership, the organization played a role in the creation of numerous organizations and partnerships including the Catalytic Fund, UpTech, Green Umbrella, the Licking River Greenway and Trails, the Northern Kentucky Education Council, the implementation of “Pre-K Works,” and the launch of LiveWell NKY.

Scheyer previously served as City Administrator for the City of Erlanger. As administrator, he was president of local and state city manager association. He was twice named administrator of the year. Prior to coming to Erlanger, Scheyer worked in healthcare for 20 years. He began his career at Bethesda Hospital as a certified respiratory therapy technician.

Scheyer graduated from Holmes in 1967. He received a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Northern Kentucky University. He is an alumnus of both Leadership Northern Kentucky and the Greater Cincinnati Regional Leadership Forum.

He enjoys spending time with his family.

Gregory Wing
Holmes Hall of Distinction

Wing, a 1971 graduate of Holmes High School, now serves as Professor of Music/trumpet at Morehead State University. He holds a Master of Music degree in Trumpet Performance from the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University (Bloomington) and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Morehead State University.

Gregory Wing

Professor Wing is recognized as one of the nation’s leading trumpet artists having served as Lead Trumpet with the Buddy Rich Big Band, Paul Anka, and four years with Tom Jones. In addition, he has played Lead Trumpet for the Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas Hilton, Flamingo Hilton, and Stardust Hotel’s house orchestra.  Professor Wing has played for virtually every major entertainer in the world including Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis, Jr., Johnny Mathis, Tony Bennett, and Natalie Cole.  

His Broadway show experience is just as extensive as Professor Wing has played for over 50 National Touring Broadway shows.  He is in high demand as a soloist and clinician and has had a long association with the Conn-Selmer Corporation as an Artists/Clinician for Vincent Bach Trumpets.

He serves on the Board for the William Adam Trumpet Festival and is a former Advisory Board member for the National Trumpet Competition, one of the nation’s most prestigious trumpet competitions.  Professor Wing was the recipient of the 2010 – 2011 Morehead State University Distinguished Teacher of the Year award and inducted into the 2013 Morehead State University.

Wing and his wife, Paula, are the proud parents of three sons.

Dr. Porchusa Combs
Holmes Outstanding Young Alumnus Award

When Combs graduated from Holmes in 2004 everyone knew she would excel. Upon graduation, she earned the Work Ethic Diploma and the prestigious International Baccalaureate Diploma, a challenging two-year course of study that prepares students for success in higher education and life in a global society. She was the salutatorian and president of her class as well as a cheerleader.

Dr. Prochusa Combs

Combs won a full ride to the University of Louisville, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in biology, Master degrees in Oral Biology, MS, and Master of Science in Clinical Dentistry, MSD, and her doctorate in Dental Medicine, DMD.

Combs is now a pediatric dentist at Kid’s Dentistree in Louisville, where she is active in the dental community, and is a member of several organizations, such as the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, the Louisville Society of Pediatric Dentistry, and the Southern Society of Pediatric Dentistry. She has also won awards for her work including the Frank H. Farrington Service and Leadership Award for her outstanding community service while in residency.

Dr. Combs and her husband, Colby, are the proud parents of two children. In her spare time, Dr. Combs loves reading, doing arts and crafts and spending time with her husband and family.

Dr. Sam Nicaise
Holmes Outstanding Young Alumnus Award

Dr. Nicaise was born and raised in Covington, and despite having moved to the east coast, is still a Kentuckian at heart.

Sam Nicaise

Dr. Nicaise graduated towards the top of his class from Holmes in 2005. While a Bulldog, he was an active member of many extracurricular activities, including the Marching and Concert Band, Future Business Leaders of America, Academic Team and Governor’s Cup, Math Team, and Class Officers, as well as a few season of Drama. He was part of the International Baccalaureate curriculum and graduated with his IB diploma, focusing on economics.

He attended the University of Kentucky and was recognized as one of the top engineering graduates in 2010. While on campus, he built social and engineering communities through the Phi Kappa Tau fraternity, Solar Car Team, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and Tau Beta Pi, the engineering honors fraternity. His interest in alternative energy was seeded through cooperative education at GE Energy Wind Turbines. On campus, he contributed to the laboratory investigations of nanotechnology-enable solar cells and chemical sensors. Through this research, he was awarded many national scholarships for STEM education.

Dr. Nicaise received his Ph.D. in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2016. While in Cambridge, he expanded his research expertise in nanotechnology and solar cells as a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow.

Now, as a postdoctoral trainee at the University of Pennsylvania in mechanical engineering, Dr. Nicaise coordinates independent and student research projects that study the mechanical and thermal properties of micro/nanostructured materials for solid-state thermal-to-electrical energy conversion and light-powered levitation.

Concurrently, he is serving as a Scientific Advisor to Avisi Technologies, a start-up from UPenn developing ultrathin eye implants for glaucoma treatment. Next year, he plans to assume a new role leading independent research and teaching on the topics of nanotechnology and alternative energy devices as a university professor or industrial researcher.

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