Three notable alumni from Williamson Central School were inducted into the inaugural Alumni of Distinction class on May 4th. David Malgee ‘72, Mike Orr ‘75, and Brian Manktelow ‘81 were honored in a ceremony at Young Sommer Winery as the first recipients. Each has made notable contributions to their communities and live with the generous spirit sown in their Williamson roots.
David Malgee was honored for contributions to historical and civic organizations. He was voted “Young Citizen of the Year” in Colonial Heights, VA in 1984. In 1985, he was awarded “President of the year” for Rotary District 760 in Gettysburg, PA. Since 2018 David has served on the Gettysburg Foundation Board of Directors. He is also the author of many history-related brochures and two books, one being The Piano Man, about the incredible career of his good friend and former teacher, George Giroux — band director for 32 years in the WCS district. Locally, Dave is a member of the Williamson-Pultneyville Historical Society and a sponsor of the annual Gates Hall golf tournament fundraiser. His hometown civic groups seek him to speak about local historical connections to the Civil War. In 2018, Dave was honored by being chosen as the WHS commencement speaker. Through the years, Dave has distinguished himself as someone who jumpstarts civic collaboration.
Inductee Mike Orr is as central to the Williamson community as his business is to our four corners. His contributions include serving on the Williamson Chamber of Commerce, president of the Williamson Business Improvement District, Commissioner and Chairman of the Williamson Fire District, and participating in the 2005 Community Planning Initiative. He shows his love of Main Street Williamson by volunteering for events that bring people downtown: the Apple Blossom Festival, the Main Street mural project, the annual Town of Williamson Cleanup, and December’s “Santa Coming to Town.” This must be why in 2014, Mike was awarded both Citizen and Organization of the year by the Williamson Chamber of Commerce. Although he attended SU as a trumpet major (thank you again, George Giroux), Mike has run King’s Auto Service on Main Street for 39 years. His reputation for honest car advice and outstanding service with his sons is a Williamson staple. He distinguishes himself for love of his hometown in both word and deed.
Brian Manktelow is an inductee who shows us that ordinary citizens can take action for change. His contributions to government and legislation affect all of us in Williamson and Wayne County. After serving in the army and attaining the rank of sergeant, Brian attended the University of Chicago and FLCC, studying political science. He then put that expertise to work in 2009 by serving as the Lyons Town Supervisor and then Vice Chairman of the Wayne County Board of Supervisors. His contributions at the county level include chairing the Finance Committee and serving on the Government Operations and Human Services committees. Brian was instrumental in initializing the Wayne County Land Bank in 2017 to rejuvenate derelict properties and get them back on the tax rolls. In 2018, Brian was elected to the NYS Assembly. The district includes all of Wayne County and a number of towns, east as far as Oswego. Closer to home, Brian has owned and operated Manktelow Farms in Lyons for more than 30 years, and has been an active member of the Wayne County Farm Bureau. As Lyons town supervisor, he worked to protect residents’ interests during the dissolution of the village of Lyons in 2015. Brian lives and breathes the word service, modeling how one person can positively impact others. Imagine, starting in small town Williamson and reaching state level to work for the greater good.
The Williamson Alumni of Distinction committee’s goal is to induct four graduates annually and start a Wall of Distinction in the high school to display their pictures and accomplishments. For more information, visit our website at https://alumniofdistinction.com