BEAVERTON — A physician specializing in emergency medicine is the recipient of the 2014 Distinguished Alumni Award from Valley Catholic School. Dr. Richard Church practices at the University and Memorial campuses of the University of Massachusetts Memorial Medical Center. He was recently promoted to assistant residency director of the Emergency Medicine Residence at the university.

Dr. Church, who graduated from Valley Catholic in 1995, was a member of the school’s first coed graduating class. While at Valley Catholic, he participated in athletics, student government and music.

One of Dr. Church’s former teachers remembers the strong writing skills the boy developed while at Valley Catholic, saying, “If he ever gets tired of being an emergency room doctor, he could easily pursue a career in writing. He was that good.”

After graduating from Valley Catholic, Church attended St. Olaf College in Minnesota before earning his Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degree from Tufts University in 2004.
He and his wife Julie live in Franklin, Mass. with their two children, Delanie (6) and Grayson (3). They are expecting their third child in May.

Church, who was unable to accept the award in person, sent a video message to students, faculty and staff. His mother, Myrna Church, accepted the award on his behalf during an all-school Mass and assembly on Jan. 29. Myrna Church served in the Sisters of St. Mary of Oregon infirmary for many years. She continues to volunteer at the SSMO convent and in the emergency room at Providence St. Vincent Medical Center.