Hall of Fame 2014


Yorktown High School Hall of Fame

Inducted Spring 2014

(click on the inductee's name to see their plaque)


Jim Baker

1945 – 
Entrepreneur, Inventor 
YHS Class of 1963 
Inducted 2014

As graduate student, invented modeling speech as a hidden Markov process that later became basis for Apple’s Siri; co-founded Dragon Systems, 1982; developed Dragon NaturallySpeaking, world’s first unconstrained natural language speech recognition tool (the same methodology is used in machine translation and gene and protein sequence modeling); Princeton A.B. 1967 (valedictorian), Ph.D. Carnegie Mellon 1975.

Paul McGehee

Acclaimed Painter 
YHS Class of 1978 
Inducted 2014

Self-taught painter of historical and nature scenes in studied and researched detail; hundreds of oils in “luminist” style have sold from his Alexandria, Va., gallery; paintings are in collections of presidents Reagan, Clinton and Bush as well as those of well-known entertainers, athletes, corporations, government agencies and local historical societies; studied at Corcoran School of Art.

Melody Miller

Spokesperson for Kennedy Family
YHS Class of 1963
Inducted 2014

Legislative staffer, speechwriter and spokesperson who helped break gender barriers for U.S. Senate staff; senior aide and spokesperson for Sen. Edward Kennedy, 1968-2005; Kennedy family liaison with civic leaders of Dallas, Texas, creating the Sixth Floor Museum, 1989; ass't. press secretary Ted Kennedy presidential campaign,1980; Sen. Robert Kennedy Senate staff, 1965 - 68; White House aide in Jacqueline Kennedy's office, l964; Invited by JFK for White House meeting as YHS senior, 1963; Penn State College of Education Outstanding Alumni selection, 1986; PSU Pattee/Paterno Library Board, 1993 – 2007; B.S. secondary education, Penn State University, 1967.

Chris Nassetta

Hotel Industry Executive
YHS Class of 1980
Inducted 2014

President and CEO of Hilton Worldwide, 2007; taking over after a period of slow growth, helped grow company to 4,000 hotels worldwide; moved headquarters from Beverly Hills, Calif., to McLean, Va.; President and CEO of Host Hotels & Resorts, 2000; co-founded Bailey Capital Corp., 1991; chief development officer Oliver Carr Co., 1987; B.A. finance University of Virginia.

Nancy Robinette

Acclaimed Actress
YHS Class of 1969
Inducted 2014

D.C. performer over 30 years; six TV/film credits; received four Helen Hayes Awards for Outstanding Lead Actress in Fat Men In Skirts (1987), Better Living (1988), The Rivals (2004), and Souvenir (2008) and one for Outstanding Supporting Actress in The Little Foxes (2003); performed at Kennedy Center, Studio Theatre, Signature Theatre, Arena Stage, Shakespeare Theater Company, Ford’s Theatre, Scena and Roundhouse theatres, and nationally at Globe in San Diego, Papermill Playhouse and McCarter theatres in New Jersey, New York Theatre Workshop and Roundabout theatres in New York City, the Waterfront in Key West, and Williamstown (Mass.) Festival; University of Kansas.

Dr. David Romness

Prominent Orthopedic Surgeon
YHS Class of 1977
Inducted 2014

Medical Director of Virginia Hospital Center’s Joint Replacement Center; president, Eastern Orthopedic Association, 2014; past president, Virginia and Washington Orthopaedic Societies; Mayo Clinic Alumni Board; counsel for American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons; Arlington Free Clinic volunteer; B.S. University of Richmond 1981; M.D. Eastern Virginia Medical School 1984.

David “Dave Arlington” Swerdloff 

Radio Personality
YHS Class of 1967
Inducted 2014

Familiar radio voice in Washington area since 1974; hosts rock shows at WASH-FM; Voice of America host of news-feature-interview and music 1991-05; news anchor WTOP-AM 1990-91; W-Lite music host 1984-90; Baltimore oldies WCBM 1974-82; WEAM 1974; B.A. math University of  Pennsylvania 1971.

John M. Tran

1960 –
Trail-Blazing Judge
YHS Class of 1977
Inducted 2014

Son of South Vietnamese diplomat who became Virginia’s first Asian American judge; named to Fairfax Circuit Court, 19th Judicial Circuit, 2013; substitute judge 2008; partner in Alexandria firm of DiMuroGinsberg; fellow, Virginia Law Foundation; state and federal prosecutor; immigrated to U.S. 1970; B.A. George Washington University, 1981, J.D. 1984.

Lynda Van Devanter

Vietnam War Activist Nurse
YHS Class of 1965
Inducted 2014

Army surgical nurse and veterans advocate whose memoir captured societal divisions of Vietnam war; autobiography Home Before Morning (1983) helped inspire TV show China Beach; as founding executive director of Women’s Project of Vietnam Veterans of America, struggled to win benefits and memorial on National Mall, 1979-84; nurse and veterans counselor 1970-78; stationed 71st Evac Hospital in Pleiku, Vietnam, 1969-70; B.A. psychology Antioch University; nursing degree Mercy Hospital, Baltimore.