Meet the Class of 2017 Valedictorian


Photo Credit: Ian Wandschneider

Valedictorian Chris Theuerkauf (far left) at DECA states earlier this year smiles with classmates and teacher Frank Manziano, one of his many extracurricular activities.

by David Viggiano, Staff Writer

About to compete at the New Balance Outdoor Nationals for track & field, the young man is the figure of athletic composure and focus. Little does the athlete next to him know that this competitor is also his school’s valedictorian. 

A competitor at DECA Nationals this past year, a member of Model UN, a cross country athlete, volunteer, member of the Federal Reserve Challenge team, and previous football player, Chris Theuerkauf  has been a heavily involved individual around Glen Rock High School through his past four years as a student.

As valedictorian, Chris will attend a breakfast with Principal John Arlotta and Superintendent Dr. Paula Valenti honoring valedictorians within the county. He has also prepared a speech to be read at the Class of 2017’s graduation ceremony on June 22.

“It wasn’t really on my mind up until senior year,” Theuerkauf said about the position. “I just made sure to learn as much as I could about many different subjects and do my best.”

Theuerkauf has been described as a pleasant and honorable person to be around inside and outside of school. Within his several extracurricular activities, he has made a number of contributions and taken on leadership positions within them as well as presenting comparatively high athletic ability, specifically in both winter and spring track & field. However, despite his popular image as a respectable and toiling individual, he has partially attributed his success to his teachers and those who have assisted him along the way.

“I would say that I took something from almost every teacher I had,” he said. “They all had a certain influence on me, whether it be academically or personally.”

One particular authority figure of Theuerkauf’s high school career, track & field head coach JP McCarten, had many positive things to say on Theuerkauf’s contributions to the team.

“Chris is a very driven and personally motivated young man,” McCarten said. “He does not give up until he has achieved what he believes is the peak of his ability. This translated very well to our overall program because he led my example for all of our athletes.  He is a big reason why we were so successful this year.”

Theuerkauf’s work ethic at home has been described similarly.

“He is a hard working student and always knows what he needs to get done,” said his younger brother, Matthew Theuerkauf (‘20). “He is always willing to give a hand.”

Theuerkauf will be attending Washington University in St. Louis.

“I think Chris will be very successful in college and would strive to what he wants to become,” Matthew said.