The norm is neither for a Chagrin student to play in a punk band nor ascend to be an Oscar nominated director, but Dave Mullins has done both and has had success throughout his career. Leaving Chagrin and his punk rock band Roygbiv, Dave set off to obtain a BFA in Illustration from the Rhode Island School of Design. He would jump right in as an animator at such studios as Walt Disney Animation, Sony Pictures Imageworks, and MGM. He would make his way over to Pixar and work on such films as Monsters Incorporated, The Incredibles, Cars, Ratatouille, Inside Out, Coco, Cars 3, Mater and the Ghostlight, Brave, and Finding Nemo. He worked his way up to Directing Animator for the film Up and Animation Supervisor for Cars 2, The Good Dinosaur, and Incredibles 2. The Pixar team has won numerous awards on these films and Dave would see his greatest individual success as the writer and director of the 2018 Oscar Nominated Short Film LOU. In addition, Dave spends a lot of time teaching animation and filmmaking at the California Institute of the Arts, Academy of Art San Francisco, Animation Mentor and Gnomon School of Visual Effects, Games and Animation to name a few.
Pete Olah was the Head Varsity Cross Country and Track Coach from 1988 – 2000, a period which saw our women’s program come to be a dominant force in Ohio. The team broke out in 1990 at the OHSAA State Cross Country Championships with a 6th place finish. The following year the runners would easily outdistance the competition and earn Chagrin its first team title in 20 years. In 1992, the Tigers returned to Columbus and finished as Runners-Up. Over his 22 seasons his teams earned 3 district championships, 3 district runner-up finishes, and 4 CVC titles. Individually Pete helped to guide 189 Regional Qualifiers, 36 State qualifiers, and 20 State placers. With the success came many honors including being selected CVC Coach of the Year four times (1991 – 1994), Geauga Times Leader Geauga County Girls Cross Country Coach of the Year (1990), Geauga Times Leader Coach of the Year (1991), Ohio Association Of Track and Cross Country Coaches District 2 Coach of the Year (Girls Cross Country in 1991). Pete was also an integral part of the wrestling program in his role as Assistant Varsity Coach during the 1980s & 1990s. The program produced a Regional Runner-Up team finish, over 20 state qualifiers including 9 placers and 2 runners-up. In addition, Pete had a distinguished career as an industrial arts teacher for 34 years at Chagrin.
Even without a girl’s golf program at Chagrin Falls, Kristin excelled on the links on our Boy’s Varsity Golf Team. In the postseason she was the 1987 State Runner-Up at Ohio High School Girls Golf State Championship with a 6th place finish in 1986. Kristin would compete in the summer touring around the country. Highlights from the summer competition were qualifying for the 1987 & 1988 USGA Junior Girls Championship and the 1987 Junior World Golf Championships. Kristin would go on to letter 4 years at Penn State University and was selected Captain by her teammates in both her junior and senior years. She was selected to the Eastern College Athletic Conference All-Conference Team in both 1990 & 1991. She continued competing in the summer and won the Cleveland Women’s Golf Association in both 1991 & 1992; the Cleveland, Greater Cleveland, Akron Tri-League Championship (1988), the Atlantic International Golf Championship in Bermuda (1989), and was Runner-Up at the Ohio Women’s Amateur Championship in 1991. Even with a demanding golf schedule Kristin would continue to carry her leadership role into other avenues from being Student Council Vice-President and OABR Director at CFHS and was a member of the Student Athletic Advisory Board at Penn State.
Dr. Mario Gerhardt began the Varsity Boy’s Soccer Team in 1970 and is now in his 46th season as its Head Coach. He is the winningest boys high school soccer coach in Ohio with 504 wins entering the 2015 soccer season. The teams Mario has coached continue to have success in the postseason with one State Runner-Up finish (2003), 5 Final Four trips, 11 District titles, and 26 Sectional championships. His regular season includes 18 conference titles. He has coached 59 Academic All-Ohioans, 32 All-Ohioans, 11 Regional All-Americans, & 1 All-American. 45 of his players continued on to play varsity college soccer. He has also been recognized by his peers by being selected as the Ohio Coach of the Year 3 times, Greater Cleveland Coach of the Year 6 times, and Conference Coach of the Year 10 times. In 2004, he was selected as a NSCAA Regional Coach and was a finalist for National Coach of the Year. Mario has previously been inducted in the Ohio Scholastic Soccer Coaches Hall of Fame (1993) & Ohio North Youth Soccer Hall of Fame (2003). He has also been honored for with the NSCAA Robert W. Robinson High School Long-Time Service Award (2009), OSSCA Pinsenschaum Sportsmanship and Ethics Award (2010), and the OHSAA Sportsmanship, Ethics, and Integrity Award (1997-1998).
Adam was a two-sport star both at Chagrin and later at Allegheny College. He was a 2-way starter (plus special teams) on the 1987 CVC Championship team that made the 1st ever play-off appearance for the Chagrin Falls football program. He earned CVC and Geauga County 1st team awards as an offensive guard and represented Chagrin Falls as a starting guard in the 1988 East-West All Star game. In wrestling, Adam would place 4th in the OHSAA State Championships at 189 lbs. Besides county and conference awards, he could boast that he was never pinned in his high school career and only allowed 3 back points in his senior season. At Allegheny, Adam was the starting offensive center for the #1 ranked Division III football team that recorded the first ever perfect regular season in school history. During his four years, his teams recorded three conference and one NCAA national championship. In his senior season, he earned 1st Team GTE Academic All-America and 2nd Team Offense North Coast Athletic Conference honors. On the collegiate mat, Adam would place 4th (’89) and 5th (’91) in the NCAA Regional Tournaments and be honored as Allegheny College’s Outstanding Freshman (’89) and Outstanding Student-Athlete (‘91).
Jocelyn was a successful 3 sport athlete for the Tigers in track, swimming and volleyball. A 3 year state qualifier in track, she was a 1986 State Qualifier in the 400, 800 & 1600 meter relays & 300 low hurdles. Her time in the 300 low hurdles still stands as the CFHS record. In the pool, Jocelyn qualified for the state swim meet her junior and senior years. She also earned 2 varsity letters in volleyball.
Bob was a key player during the 1980s for the Tiger football team. He was selected All-Ohio in 1986 and earned a scholarship at the University of Notre Dame. He was a 2 year starter and was named Honorable Mention All-American at Right Tackle in 1990. Bob was selected in the 3rd round of the 1991 NFL draft by the Cincinnati Bengals. He would later get a starting position for his hometown Cleveland Browns starting 47 games over a 3-year span. He spent his final 2 seasons as an offensive lineman for the Washington Redskins.
Erik Speed will always be remembered as one of Chagrin’s finest wrestlers. Possessed with superior strength, quickness and all-around skills, he often made a tough sport look effortless. He earned four varsity letters, qualifying three times for the Division II State Meet. As a senior he placed 2nd in the state. As a junior he finished 5th. Erik’s high school career record was 96-23-1. In 1985 he was named to Mat Magazine’s High School All-American 2nd-team. He was on the magazine’s Academic All-American 1st team. He won two regional championships and twice he was his team’s MVP. As a senior he was All Chagrin Valley Conference 1st-team. He was a winner at the East-West All Star Meet. Erik earned a scholarship to Cornell University where he became a varsity letterman.
Jon’s leadership and athletic skills helped his teams win several championships during his years at Chagrin Falls High School. He excelled in baseball, football and basketball, and was a team captain in each sport. In baseball he was 1st-team All-Conference during his junior and senior years. He was selected to the Plain Dealer’s All-Greater Cleveland Team and Dream Team. Leading his team to a Chagrin Valley Conference Championship as a senior, he won the league’s Most Valuable Player Award. In football he was All-Conference and won the Golden Helmet Award for the Greater Cleveland Area. In 1980 Jon’s basketball team won league, sectional and district titles. He was chosen for the All-District Tourney Team. He played professional baseball for two years in the Cincinnati Reds organization.
Eric won many races and awards as a track and cross country standout at Chagrin Falls High School. His last race was his best. As a senior in track he won a state championship in the 1600 meters. Earlier that season he established new Chagrin Valley Conference records in the 1600 meters and the 3200 meters. In his final cross country season Eric was selected as the CVC’s Most Valuable Player. He placed 12th in the State Cross Country Meet. At Indiana University he ran three years varsity cross country and three years indoor/outdoor track and field.
During the 1980s Chagrin was graced with tremendous speed and athleticism from the Bello sisters. When Lolita ’85 graduated, middle sister Alexandra ’87 didn’t have to look far for a replacement on the relay teams. The baton was now passed to Vanessa, which resulted in State Track Meet finishes of a 4th in the 4 by 100 Meter Relay in 1986 and a 6th in the 4 by 200 Meter Relay in 1987. Vanessa would eventually become the first Chagrin athlete to be a four time state placer when she earned a 5th in 1988 and a 4th in 1989, both in the 200 Meter sprint. Additionally, she holds the most amount of CFHS Track & Field records, 4. She still claims the 100 Meter (12. 5 seconds) and 200 Meter sprints (25.75) and was on the 4 by 100 Meter (50.27) and 4 by 200 Meter relays (1:44.97). Bello also earned varsity letters with success in both volleyball and basketball as well as in track. Vanessa was twice selected 1st Team CVC in Volleyball.
Jim’s entire 39 year teaching career was spent as physical education and health teacher at Chagrin Falls Middle School. He was the 1st Athletic Director at Chagrin Falls Middle School holding the position for 23 years. He started many of the athletic teams at CFMS, including being the first coach for track, wrestling and gymnastics. He spent over 30 years coaching football holding the positions from Head Varsity to Middle School coach. For 17 years, Jim was also the Assistant Varsity Baseball Coach. Jim continues his dedication to Chagrin athletes by currently serving in the athletic department.
Dave earned a place as one of the best track athletes in CFHS history. His 400 meter school record of 48.1, set in 1980, hasn’t been seriously challenged. He set several track records at Chagrin, placing second in the 400 meters at the state meet in Columbus during his senior year. He went on to earn NCAA All American honors in track at the University of Virginia. At Virginia, he set a school record in the 400 meter hurdles and was inducted into the University of Virginia Hall of Fame. Dave also ran cross country and played soccer at Chagrin.
Colleen took her swimming prowess to great lengths during high school and college. At CFHS, she was a 4-time state qualifier and member of relay teams which placed in the top three at the state meet. At the University of Iowa, she set school records in the 50 yard freestyle and the 200 yard free relay. She was All Big Ten Conference during her junior and senior years and qualified for the Olympic Trials in the 50 yard freestyle. Colleen was also a fine track and field athlete at Cd
T.J. was named All-Ohio in three sports at CFHS. He was First Team All-State as a kicker in football and Honorable Mention for two years in basketball and baseball. After playing football for a year at Penn State, he transferred to Allegheny College where he earned All-League honors in basketball and football. As a punter, he was invited to tryouts for the Cleveland Browns, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Buffalo Bills. T.J. currently teaches and coaches at Euclid City Schools.