The WIAA's Distinguished Alumni program will recognize former WIAA student-athletes who are making significant impacts within their communities -- both on and off the field -- since graduating high school. Select individuals will be highlighted across the WIAA's website, social media channels and mobile app.
Please use the button below to nominate distinguished alumni from your school community!

Joseph Gray

Since graduating from Lakes High School in June of 2002, eight-time USA Mountain Running National Champion Joseph Gray has earned the moniker of "Greatest Mountain Runner of All Time" amongst his peers. His list of athletic accolades at the collegiate, national and international level, alongside his dedication to inclusivityand equity in the world of running, continue to inspire new generations of athletes across the world.

"Sports have been an amazing boost to my life in too many ways to count. I'd say the most profound ways have been through the opportunities and challenges. I truly believe challenges force us to grow and seek out ways to improve ourselves. When it comes to opportunities, sports have afforded me the ability to see places on the Earth I had only dreamt about or seen on TV. Those opportunities helped me dream bigger and achieve goals that seemed out of reach in my past. Growth!"

- Joseph Gray

Claudia Longo

"My name is Claudia Longo, and I am currently a 5th year on the Women’s Soccer team at the University of Washington. I am graduating in a few months with a Neuroscience degree, and I plan on applying to medical school next year as I aspire to be a physician. Though I am quite busy with school and soccer, I do enjoy spending lots of time outdoors doing activities such as wake surfing and hiking, and with my family so close to UW, I love spending time with them back home in Issaquah. One of my passions is also giving back to the game that has given me so much, so I do quite a few individual trainings with younger soccer players in the area to help them gain knowledge and confidence on the soccer field.

Over the years, playing sports has taught me so much about life both on and off the field, and my experience of playing high school sports in the WIAA was no exception. I played Issaquah soccer for all four years while in high school, and enjoyed every moment of it. Playing for your high school brings a unique opportunity to play for something bigger than yourself, and it turned a group of individuals with varying skillsets into a close-knit family with common goals. The memories I made and the friendships I formed during that time will stay with me for the rest of my life, and I am so grateful I got to play high school soccer in the WIAA."

- Claudia Longo

Joe Harris

"I played college basketball for the Virginia Cavaliers, before being selected with the 33rd overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft by the Cleveland Cavaliers. I have played 8 years in the NBA, the last 6 with the Brooklyn Nets.   I currently live in Brooklyn and spend the majority of my offseason in New York, having spent more of my life in Brooklyn than anywhere except my hometown of Lake Chelan. I grew up around the gym in a sport-filled family, with my dad as a coach where I acquired a love for athletics and the game of basketball in particular.  Being involved in sports helped me set goals and develop a work ethic to achieve those goals."

--Joe Harris

Conner Pierce

"I am an adaptive track and field athlete who competed at the State level in the WIAA Ambulatory Disability Paralympic Category. My disability is Cerebral Palsy, which affects my muscle tone and coordination, and also presents learning challenges. I medalled at both the 2017 and 2018 1A WIAA State Championships, representing the Seattle Academy of Arts and Sciences. In high school track, I ran the 100M, 200M, and 400M dashes.

In 2017, I also had a fairly strong showing in cross country, competing at the able-bodied Bi-District Championships and appearing in multiple varsity races in my senior year. I was one of the most improved athletes my high school team ever fielded, improving by a total of seven-plus minutes over the 5K distance from 10th-12th Grade.

Since graduating from Seattle Academy in 2018, I have gone on to represent the United States nationally and internationally in Paralympic Track and Field. In 2019, I was a member of the United States ParaPan-American Games Team as a sprinter. I currently compete for the University of British Columbia on the able-bodied varsity team, and have set the World Record in the Men's 10,000-Meter Run for my Paralympic Classification (T36, which is a classification for athletes with CP and Traumatic Brain Injuries). I also recently competed at the 2022 US Championships, where I won two gold medals over the 100M and 400M distances.

In school, I am pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Kinesiology (exercise science), and am looking towards a Masters Degree in Kinesiology, Sports Management, or a related subject. I also have experience coaching youth track and field, and have begun producing and releasing my own rap music.

My current goals are to improve my existing 10,000-Meter World Record and to aim for a spot on another United States Track Team. I am continuing to train for the Paralympic Games, with hopes of making it to Paris 2024.

I will always make every effort to put a good word in about what the WIAA has done for me, and to extend my highest gratitude for the organization. It is because of opportunities like this that I have had the opportunity to pursue further success in track and field, at the collegiate level and beyond. If one more athlete has the opportunity to pursue their goals because of the support of the WIAA, it is a great achievement for all athletes on the field. I always wish the best for the organization, and I hope that the athletes, coaches, and staff are doing well."

June 17, 2023 Update:

"Last month, I graduated from the University of British Columbia with a Bachelor's Degree in Kinesiology. For my last meet with UBC, I ran at the Mount SAC Relays in the Final Heat of the Paralympian Division of the 100M and 200M running events, as well as the Open Collegiate 100M and 400M Races, running against the regular Division I Sprinters.

I have recently begun running Paralympic Track and Field for the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor. In the fall, I will be pursuing a Master's Degree in Sports Management, which lasts about 2 years. I hope to use this degree in the future to support the development of Adaptive Sports and Paralympic Sport at the collegiate level.

Running for the University of Michigan, I recently made a very successful appearance at the 2023 US Paralympic National Championships in Chula Vista, California, which is the site of the US Olympic and Paralympic Training Center. I successfully defended my 100M and 400M National titles, winning two Gold Medals, and am currently headlining as the fastest US T36 Athlete in this Classification over the last few years. At this competition, I also kicked off the University of Michigan Team to a Silver Medal over the 4x100M distance racing the United States' Tokyo Games Gold Medalist Team.

After the US Championships, I made an appearance at the Desert Challenge Games, a major International Grand Prix competition in the United States. Here, I ran to Top-3 finishes in both the 100M and 400M events against an intensely competitive field of athletes in my Classification, most of them from Mexico.

I am currently climbing into the rankings of the foremost T36 sprinters in the world. As of this writing, I am being considered by, and am in communication with, the USOPC and Move United USA for placement on future United States’ Teams. My ambition is to make these teams this year or next year.

I always love following the progress of the athletes in the WIAA on social media, and I look forward to seeing the continued success of the organization and the athletes in it."

- Conner Pierce

Regina Rogers-Wright

"Regina Rogers-Wright is a Seattle Native. Regina went to Chief Sealth High School and soon was ranked 6th in the nation. Regina was high school All-American and 2006 State Championships MVP. Regina then went on to play for UCLA for a year and then came home to the University of Washington. Regina is the first player in men or women to transfer from a PAC-10 school to another one and play. Regina was a college All-American and in the 2012 WNBA Draft. Regina then began her coaching career as head coach at Denny Middle School in 2013 and then went on the coach at Rainier Beach High School and Lindbergh Highschool. From 2017-2018, Regina was the head coach at Tacoma College. From 2018 -2019, Regina served as the head coach for Green River College. Regina then took a two-year hiatus before going back to coach at Auburn during the 2022-23 season. Regina had her high school jersey retired in 2020. Regina was also inducted into the 2020 Seattle Public Schools Hall of Fame."+

- Regina Rogers-Wright

Linh Truong

Linh Truong (she/they) is a full-time content creator and student at Georgetown University studying Sociology and Women & Gender Studies. An alumnus of Chiawana High School and the WIAA Forensics, Linh competed in Program Oral Interpretation and Informative Speaking at the state level and Congressional Debate at the national level. Born to Vietnamese immigrant parents in Orange, California, Linh now resides in D.C. with her 11-year old cat Kayla. They are currently a communications intern at the White House Initiative on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders.

Passionate about AAPI engagement, Linh is a member of the Georgetown Vietnamese Student Association and the Mid-Atlantic Union of Vietnamese Student Associations, working in social media and marketing positions. This past summer, they participated in the 2022 OCA National Summer Intern Cohort, aiming to build cross-racial and ethnic solidarity between communities via art, storytelling, and advocacy work.

When she isn’t hitting the books, you can find them filming YouTube videos about lifestyle, fashion, and college life. In her free time, she enjoys watching anime, making art, and playing the piano.

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