Boyle celebrates honors alumni, former superintendent

Published 3:25 pm Tuesday, September 12, 2023


Contributing writer

Two Boyle County High School alumni and a former superintendent were honored Friday with awards from the Boyle County High School Alumni Association.

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The alumni association presented Distinguished Alumni Awards to Richie Bottoms and Doug Lester and presented its “Rebel for Life” Award to Mike LaFavers.

The awards were presented at the association’s annual alumni tailgate event, and the honorees were recognized at the Boyle football game Friday.

The Boyle County High School Alumni Association was established in 2010 to provide support for Boyle School Schools and to provide an avenue for alumni to reconnect with their classmates.

Distinguished Alumni Award

Richie Bottoms, Class of 1973

Bottoms has served since 2000 as the commonwealth’s attorney for the 50th Judicial District, which encompasses Boyle and Mercer counties.

He has been recognized by the Kentucky Commonwealth’s Attorneys’ Association with its Outstanding Commonwealth’s Attorney award. He founded Bottoms Law Office in Harrodsburg in 1987 and has also served as a public defender.

“It is quite the honor. I am very humbled. I have always appreciated Boyle County, what they have done for me and my education,” Bottoms said. “I don’t think I could have had a better start. I am very thankful for them. We are reminiscing a lot has changed but a lot has stayed the same. It brings back a lot of memories from years ago. It is always fun to come back and participate activities that Boyle County has going on.”

Prior to becoming an attorney, he spent seven years as a Lexington police officer.

Bottoms was a three-year letterman in football at Boyle. He earned a bachelor’s degree in police administration from Eastern Kentucky University and a law degree from the University of Kentucky in 1984.

Distinguished Alumni Award

Doug Lester, Class of 1970

Lester served for 25 years as a teacher and counselor at Boyle and has served as a pastor for 42 years.

He shared his knowledge and shepherded students through academic and personal challenges in 15 years as a mathematics teacher and 10 years as a counselor at Boyle.

He has spent 42 years in pastoral ministry at five churches, and he is currently serving as the pastor at Perryville Community Church. He also serves through the Perryville Ministerial Association and the Perryville Elementary School Priority Kids Club.

“It feels good to be back, we not only graduated in 1978, but we taught here until we retired in 2013, so it is a bit hard,” Lester said. “Being selected was kind of a surprise, I’m not sure I deserve it. I thank the Lord I had the opportunity to serve this community and maybe make a little bit of a difference.”

Lester earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics with a minor in statistics from Morehead State University and a master’s degree in mathematics education and Rank I certification in secondary counseling from Eastern Kentucky University.

“Rebel for Life” Award

Mike LaFavers

LaFavers retired earlier this summer as superintendent of Boyle County Schools, concluding a 32-year career in the district.

During his 14 years as superintendent, Boyle County was named a top-10 school district in Kentucky and two of its schools were named National Blue Ribbon Schools by the U.S. Department of Education: Perryville Elementary in 2019 and Junction City Elementary in 2020. A new Boyle County Middle School building opened in 2020, and numerous other improvements were made to the district’s schools and campuses during his tenure.

Prior to becoming superintendent in 2009, LaFavers spent one year as assistant superintendent and four years as principal at Boyle County Middle School. He spent the previous 13 years on the faculty at Boyle, where he taught psychology, sociology, U.S. history, world history and geography. LaFavers was unable to attend the event.