The Duluth East Hall of Fame announced its 2013 inductee class, including:Eric Eskola
Eskola is a Birchen Award winner from the Duluth East Class of 1971. Following his countless involvement as an East student, Eskola began working at Duluth’s KDAL radio and TV station while attending and eventually graduating from UMD. Eskola left KDAL in 1980, when he began working with WCCO Radio in Minneapolis and became a Minnesota broadcasting icon.
Eskola spent 21 years of his WCCO career as the radio station’s political correspondent. He was often referred to as “one of the best political reporters in Minnesota.” As a member of the Minnesota Broadcasting Hall of Fame, Eskola retired from WCCO in 2010. He continues to co-host Almanac on Twin Cities Public Television, a position he has held since 1986.Thomas Little
A social studies teacher at East from 1965 to 1978, Little was admired by his students and advised several extra-curricular groups at the school. This 30-year legendary Duluth educator was awarded a Bush Fellowship in 1977, for his passion about learning and improving the quality of life in his community. Little was also appointed lecturer for the Staley Foundation in 1981, and was the recipient of Minnesota’s Terrific Teacher Award in 1992.
Little also served as a delegate to the City of Duluth’s Inaugural Sister City Delegation to Petrozavodsk, Russia, and was a frequent lecturer and guest speaker for numerous educational workshops and conferences. Tom passed away on August 12, 2002.Thomas R. Nides
Nides is a Birchen Award winner from the Duluth East Class of 1979 and a graduate of the University of Minnesota, Since his scholarly achievements, Nides has had quite a decorated political career. He has served as chief of staff to both Rep. Tony Coelho and Rep. Tom Foley. In 1994, he also served as chief of staff to U.S. Trade Representative Mickey Kantor. In 2000, he was the campaign manager for vice presidential candidate, Sen. Joseph Lieberman. Upon receiving nomination from President Obama, Nides served as Deputy Secretary of State from 2011 until 2013.
He is currently a vice-chairman at Morgan Stanley.Dick Skogg
Skogg was an extremely active faculty member at Duluth East from 1963 to 1997. He taught math and chemistry, and later served as Activities Director during his last five years at East. During his tenure as Athletic Director, 84 different Duluth East teams participated in state tournaments. As a coach, he helped guide Greyhound track teams for 32 years, cross-country for 26 years, and captured five consecutive Minnesota State Girls’ Cross-Country Championships.
Skogg was awarded Minnesota State Cross-Country Coach of the Year for both boys and girls teams during his career. He co-managed the Swain Cross Country Meet for 24 years, and is a member of the Minnesota State Cross-Country Coaches Hall of Fame as well as the Minnesota State Coaches Hall of Fame.Nick A. Srdar
Srdar served as principal of Duluth East High School from 1970 until his retirement in 1987. He began his career in education as a teacher in Floodwood, Minnesota in 1956 where he became principal in 1959. Prior to his appointment as East principal, Srdar also served as principal at Keewatin, Woodland, and Washington.
Nick believed in the potential of all young people and set high expectations for students and faculty. He took great pride in the scholarly achievements of students and in the “Good Sportsmanship Award” that East’s student body consistently received at state tournaments. It is often said that when you think of the “classy nature of Duluth East, you think of Nick Srdar.” He passed away on November 25, 2009.
The Duluth East High School Hall of Fame was established in 2012 in a joint effort between the East High School Activities Office and the newly established Duluth East High School Foundation. The purpose of the Hall of Fame is to recognize the outstanding achievements made by East alumni who are outstanding community leaders, athletes, coaches, advisors, and/or teachers from East High School.
This year’s class will be inducted on September 21 at the Hall of Fame Dinner at Duluth East High School.