The St. Michael-Albertville school district created a Hall of Fame this past school year to honor those who have made an outsized impact on the 50-year old district.
For their inaugural members, the Hall of Fame committee has chosen to honor Dr. Tom Hagerty and Chuck Lefebvre for their dedication to the betterment of the schools. They honored these two men in a ceremony on May 21st.
Dr. Tom Hagerty
Dr. Hagerty became one of the district’s first school members upon the inception of the district in 1965. This was before STMA offered a full K-12 education and therefore was not officially recognized as a school district until 1968. He served on the school board for 25 years, until 1990, acting as secretary and as chairperson for many years.
He said his work as a veterinarian in town allowed him to meet many families in the community, and that gave him the desire to serve on the school board. Hagerty has had five children and three grandchildren graduate from STMA schools.
“The time on the school board was just a really great opportunity to understand what was going on,” Hagerty said. “And then I appreciated all the good people I had to work with, the board members and the staff, the students and the families. It was really satisfying.”
Dr. Hagerty served a total of 41 years in elected office in the community. He also served on Frankfort Township’s supervisory board for nine years, and then he joined the St. Michael city council once Frankfort Township became part of St. Michael, serving from 1997-2005.
“That’s unheard of,” board chair Drew Scherber said. “No one will ever match that, I’m sure.”
Lefebvre served on the school board for 18 years, from 1992-2010. Scherber said Lefebvre always wanted STMA schools to be number one, not just above average.
“He said if our wrestling team can be number one, why can’t our academics be number one?” Scherber said. “That attitude still continues today with all of us. Chuck started that and now we’re in the top 10 percent of all school districts [in the state], so that’s great.”
During Lefebvre’s tenure on the board, Scherber said the school district grew from 1,600 students to 5,200, and a budget from $6 million to $39 million.
“Few individuals have had an impact like Chuck has had on the school district,” Scherber said.
School board member Gayle Weber has been on the board since 1994, but she has experience working with both men since she took notes for board meetings starting toward the end of Hagerty’s time on the board.
“They both were such valuable members of the school board … and dedicated to the position,” Weber said. “Always level-headed, and [they] made decisions that were thoughtful. Kids were number one always.”
Superintendent Dr. Ann-Marie Foucault said Dr. Hagerty and Mr. Lefebvre are very deserving of the recognition as strong contributors to the district’s commitment to excellence.
“Their commitment to STMA students and the district is infallible, and their work is a promise of a bright future,” she said.