John Archibald

Ridgewood NJ Public School

Our Principals

A long over due collection of tribute pages to the individuals who accepted the challenge of educating us.


John Archibald

1967 Ashby Award Recipient

March 29, 2020

Joan Wrightsman Haring: “John Archibald was the finest principal with whom I ever worked during my 25 years as a teacher. I was part of the faculty of 4 schools and had 5 principals during those years. John knew the names of all the students and parents. In his evaluations, he began with telling a teacher his/her strengths and then gently mentioned some things the teacher could improve upon. He was always encouraging, caring and well organized. A finer man does not exist.”

Bob Herman: Have fond memories of Mr. Archibald. Growing up in Somerville School and the Annex he touched and shaped the lives of many! RIP Mr. Archibald.

Kathy Youngberg Lynam: “He was amazing at remembering names I never went their still in Bronx but my sis did and I would pick her up up the street and he ask my name and never forgot it.”

Charlene CA: “He was the best. He always made us feel special.

Bill Nielson: “If you went to Somerville This Legend of a Man knew your Name.

Laraine Reedy: “I loved Mr. Archibald! I went to Somerville and Somerville Annex and he knew EVERYBODY’S name. I ran into him in the late eighties and he knew exactly who I was, by name, and then remembered who my sisters were as well. He was one of my few favorite adults from childhood. The world is now a bit dimmer without him in it.”

James Stoehr: “Bummer. Loved him. Our 6th grade class composed a song for him because he was retiring. He lived around the corner from us & I would bump into him in later years in my 20’s. As noted, remembered everyone’s name. Always Radiated good vibes & positivity.”

Shawn Selders: “I was just a little kid going to Somerville School in the 70s, but I remember him and his warm smile very well. All the kids seemed to love and respect him…our caring principal. He was a class act, a unique principal. He retired in the middle of my 4th grade year and the whole school sang him a song at an assembly in the gymnasium. It was the song It’s A Small World with the words rewritten to address Mr. Archibald personally. I can still remember singing the line: “Happy days on Simpatico Dose”….referring to his boat. I saw him many years later at Grand Union and he looked exactly the same as I remembered. He must have had great genes. 98 years is a nice run. I’ll always remember him very fondly. Peace.”

Nancy Turner Loack: “He was a fabulous Principal and he did always remember names of everyone at Somerville. I loved seeing him drive in or out of school in his classic Karmen Gia’s! We would see him at ball games and the Grand Union. What a great man he was and left a great legacy for the all of us. God Bless Mr Archibald.”



Dennis Carroll


Barry Deetz Robert Olsen

Boys Athletics

Richard Flechtner, Richard Bennett, Roger Sweeney, Tony Napier, Jack Van Yperen, Chuck Johnson, Charles Bookstaver


Melvin Thompson Grace Coe

Deans Of Girls

Dr. Lois B. Knox (1919-1954) Wilma J. McVeigh (1954-

Domestic Exchange

Helen Aslanides


Alan Bennett Larry Coyle Amy Emmers Loren Leek Stuart Postle

Newell Guillan Paul Darby

Girls Athletics

Kitty Batterson Jacob Brown Debbie Paul Jeff Yearing


Carl Albano James Stroker


“Uncle” Harry Ahearn Laura Fleming Charlotte McCane Milo Okema Medha Kirtane Harold Vaughan


Anita Crivelli

Industrial Arts

Leo Palmisano


Faith Colton Arthur Deeks Helen Towle


Donald E. Bowler George Murphy Arthur Rispoli


C. Betram Harmon John Lochner Robert Whittemore

Principals & Assistant Principals

John McCutcheon George Egli Frank S. Foley William C. Leach

Irwin B. Somerville George Neville John Archibald Basil Pizzuto

Spanish Language

Fernando Gomez


Jack Boyle “B”

Willard School

Gene Ricci Vita Leach