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District 303's distinguished alumni to be recognized

Published: Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2012 6:29 p.m. CDT • Updated: Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2012 6:33 p.m. CDT

ST. CHARLES – Three St. Charles High School graduates have been awarded District 303's Distinguished Alumni Award for 2013.

Donald DeWitte, Michael Hood and Jon Miller will be recognized at a Feb. 23 jazz event for reaching a high level of achievement in their career fields and contributing to their communities, according to a news release.

DeWitte, a 1972 St. Charles High School graduate, is a lifelong resident of St. Charles and has spent his career in the building materials industry. He was elected to the St. Charles City Council in 1993 and was re-elected in 1997 and 2001. He chaired council committees and focused on public works and public safety.

In 2005, DeWitte was elected mayor of St. Charles and has served two terms. As mayor, he has been involved in organizations including the DuPage Mayors' and Managers' Conference and the Metropolitan Mayors' Caucus. He also served as president from 2007 to 2008 for the MetroWest Council of Government.

Hood, a 1983 St. Charles High School graduate, serves as deputy attorney general for criminal justice for the Illinois Attorney General's office. He joined the Marine Corps while attending law school at DePaul University. He eventually achieved the rank of major and earned a Navy and Marine Corps commendation medal in 1997 for meritorious service while serving as a chief judge advocate.

Hood was deployed to the Persian Gulf during Operation Desert Storm, where he served as staff judge advocate. He joined the Cook County State's Attorney's office as an assistant state's attorney after being honorably discharged. The Illinois Prosecutors Bar Association named Hood Illinois Prosecutor of the Year in 2006.

Miller graduated from St. Charles High School in 1993 and now is an associate professor and graduate chair of astronomy at the University of Michigan. He graduated magna cum laude with a degree in physics from the University of Pennsylvania. In 2002, he received his doctorate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Miller served on a research team at the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, where he helped discover two mid-sized black holes. He has lectured at national and international venues, including the NASA Goddard Scientific Colloquium in 2011. His work has been published several times and has been referenced as first author in 34 journal papers.

The award is presented by the Greater St. Charles Education Foundation and the St. Charles School District.

The recipients will be honored at the Greater St. Charles Education Foundation's Night of Jazz, which will be Feb. 23 at the St. Charles Country Club. Tickets can be purchased by visiting www.stceducation.com or by contacting Chris Larry at cmlarry@comcast.net.

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