Former Point Pleasant Beach High School Principal Raymond D. Ellis is one of five alumni being honored at the Point Beach Education Foundation Hall of Fame Annual Awards Banquet on Friday night.
Ellis and the other new Hall of Famers are being honored at the Crystal Point Yacht Club in Point Pleasant. Cocktails are at 6 p.m., followed by dinner and the inductions at 7:30 p.m.
The other honorees are former mayor Jack Pasola, Jennifer Hunziker Kelber, John Christopher Amelchenko and Peter Joseph Ryan.
The following narrative about Ellis, who is being honored with the Mario A. Palisi Award, was submitted by the foundation:
The Marino A. Palisi Award is given annually as Hall of Fame recognition to an exemplary faculty or staff member. This year the Foundation is pleased to honor Dr. Raymond D. Ellis, former Point Pleasant Beach High School Principal.
Dr. Ellis took over as Principal of the “Beach High School” in 1992 and by the end of his first year made a lasting impression. Then Superintendent of Schools, Dr. F. Thomas Crawley, noted in Ray’s first summary evaluation, “Mr. Ellis was already a great Principal when he was hired and is well on his way to becoming a great high school Principal.” Dr. Crawley predicted correctly, as Dr. Ellis would spend the next 19 years building what would become one of the finest high schools in the State.
Ray Ellis began his career in education in 1972 as a teacher for the City of New York Public School System. He taught his first four years on Staten Island in Public School #23 and Public School #60.
In 1976, Mr. Ellis decided to depart from the public school system and took a teaching position at Moore Catholic High School on Staten Island. He would teach and coach basketball and baseball at Moore Catholic for the next seven years. In 1982, Ray was recognized as the New York Daily News Basketball “Coach of the Year”. In 1982 he was honored again by being named the New York Daily News Baseball “Coach of the Year” after leading the Moore Catholic Mavericks Baseball Team to Yankee Stadium where they captured the New York City CHSAA Championship Title.
In 1983, Mr. Ellis left Staten Island and reentered the public school arena landing a teaching job in one of Ocean County’s newest public elementary schools, the Cecil S. Collins School in Barnegat Township. After just two short years, Ray moved up the ranks and was appointed Supervisor of Instruction for the Collins School. After two years in that position, Mr. Ellis moved up again and was named Vice-Principal of the Cecil S. Collins Elementary School, a position he held from 1987 to 1989.
Dr. Horbelt, then Superintendent of the Barnegat School District, recognizing Ray’s ability to lead, recommended that Mr. Ellis be appointed Principal of the Russell O. Brackman Middle School in 1989.
Mr. Ellis led the Brackman School from 1989 to 1992. During his tenure, Ray opened a brand new facility to house the Russell O. Brackman Middle School students and restructured the entire middle school program adding more emphasis on academics while developing a school-wide student elective program helping to enrich each child’s educational experience.
In addition, Ray introduced the school’s comprehensive substance abuse program, worked to create and implement a new student orientation program, and remained coordinator for several district wide initiatives including the district affirmative action program, school district accreditation program and district interscholastic sports programs.
In 1992 Principal Ellis was lured away from Barnegat and was named Principal of Point Pleasant Beach High School. As Principal of Point Pleasant Beach High School, Ray accomplished a lot. His school has been recognized every year since 1998 as one of the top 75 high schools in the State of New Jersey as ranked by “New Jersey Monthly Magazine."
Under his leadership, the students in his school annually achieved Ocean County’s highest comprehensive high school scores on the New Jersey High School Proficiency Assessment and the highest SAT scores in Ocean County.
In 2005, Dr. Ellis was appointed to serve as Superintendent of Schools for the Point Pleasant Beach School District but, missing his students, quickly realized his true passion and returned to the helm of Point Pleasant Beach High School to finish out his career.
During Dr. Ellis’s 19 years at the Beach he was more than just Principal Ellis. In addition to fulfilling his role as Principal, he also served as the Chess Club Moderator and for the last eleven years as the head varsity baseball coach for the Garnet Gulls.
Coach Ellis built the baseball program into one of the most respected in the Shore Conference. Ray somehow also found time to serve on the NJSIAA Executive Committee, NJSIAA Leagues and Conference Committee, and Shore Conference Executive Committee helping to better athletic programs for all students across the State.
Coach Ellis was named the 2010 Shore Conference B-Central Coach of the Year, after his Gulls won the 2010 Divisional Championship,a fitting end to his coaching career. Ray’s love for baseball and involvement continues today and he has found a way to stay involved. This year Ray is part of the Minnesota Twins organization working with the training camp staff in Fort Myers, Florida his new hometown to help prepare the Twins for their April 6th opener.
Ray, an academic himself, received a B.S. in Education from Oneonta State in 1972 where he also earned recognition as an athlete being named twice to the all S.U.N.Y.A.C. conference team. In 1976, he earned a Masters Degree in Education from Wagner College and in 1991 completed additional Educational Leadership coursework at Georgian Court University. In 1999 Dr. Raymond D. Ellis earned a Doctor of Education degree from Nova Southeastern University.
Dr. Ellis was also very active in the professional community. He is a past trustee of the Point Pleasant Beach Education Foundation. Dr. Ellis, for 10 years, chaired the Foundation’s golf outing which is one of the Foundation’s biggest annual fundraisers. He has also served as an instructor in the New Jersey Department of Education’s Alternate Route Program, a Middle States Accreditation Chairperson, and has been a Middle States Accreditation Validation Team Member, as well as an adjunct professor at Ocean County College.
Ray is the father of four children: Matthew, Amanda, Sarah -PPBHS Class of 2007 and Lauren -PPBHS Class of 2009. He is married to his loving wife Eileen, also a retired educator, and together they reside in Fort Myers, Florida.
Co-editor, Kevin Prima, of the 2007 Ebb-Tide Yearbook, which was dedicated to Dr. Ellis, stated it best when he said, “Dr. Ellis is much more than a principal. His involvement in all aspects of Point Pleasant Beach High School is amazing. His passion for the school, its students, and its faculty is virtually unmatched while his personable outlook keeps the school a positive place to attend everyday.
Although it is impossible to thank you for all that you do, know that everyone highly respects and appreciates you and everything you do.”
Dr. Raymond D. Ellis, the Foundation agrees and congratulates you on an outstanding career and we appreciate you and all you have done for the students of the Point Pleasant Beach School District.