The Story Behind the Scholarship: Richard J. Markovich Scholarship Award

Markovich-Scholarship-Award-019After graduating from Greater Latrobe High School in 1992, Scott Markovich has excelled in the business world, and is currently the national president of Magellan Complete Care. In 2007 he was recognized by the New Haven Business Times as one of the Forty Under 40 award recipients, an outstanding young professional shining through his leadership. Though, Scott is not the only leader in his family.

Scott’s dad, Richard J. Markovich, was a star on the basketball team during his time at Latrobe. He averaged over 12 points per game as a junior, and with hustle and practice, he earned the title of co-captain for his senior year (1959-60). The season looked promising at the start. Richard averaged nearly 16 points per game before he devastatingly suffered a separated shoulder during a game at Somerset. After the injury, Richard could no longer play basketball and was forced to sit out for the remainder of the season. However, his leadership and support of his team never waned. He made sure to be present at every remaining practice and game to fulfill his duties, motivating and leading his team.

The extent to which Richard loved the game of basketball and the devastation surrounding the injury that cut his career short were unknown to his son, until Scott began researching his father’s high school days. It was a search prompted by a postcard from the Greater Latrobe Partners in Education Foundation to update biographical information for an upcoming alumni directory. Upon learning about GLPIEF for the first time, Scott explored the website and reconnected with GLPIEF Board Member, James Okonak, who was his youth soccer coach. He decided he wanted to do something to honor his dad, began his research, and discovered Richard’s involvement as a Wildcat basketball player and leader. Scott knew the perfect way to honor his dad would be through an award for a student participating in the game his father loved.

The Richard J. Markovich Scholarship Award was established in 2015 to recognize a graduating senior of the Greater Latrobe Senior High School’s Boys Basketball Team. Following suit with the qualities Richard Markovich possessed as a student at Latrobe, the awardee should exemplify student leadership with special dedication to hard work and sportsmanship in the areas of academics and athletics, be a positive role-model for his school and have the respect of his teammates.

On May 21st, 2015, Scott took the stage of the Greater Latrobe High School auditorium, with his father at his side, to announce the recipient of the first Richard J. Markovich Scholarship Award. Senior Matt Dragan, a power forward on this year’s team, was announced as winner. Matt averaged nearly 15 points per game for the Wildcats and will be continuing his education at Geneva College in the fall. It was a memorable moment for father, son, and awardee.

“He graduated with a lot of unknowns. What if he hadn’t separated his shoulder? Would he have played in college? Would he have been one of the better Wildcat players to play the game? We simply don’t know,” Scott said about his father during his speech. “But what we do know tonight is that this scholarship will have a lasting legacy for both him and my family.”

Richard Markovich still lives in the area with his wife, Elaine (Czerpak) Markovich, where they raised their two children Scott and Michele, both Latrobe graduates. Michele and her husband John Zavatsky reside in North Huntington with their two daughters Ava and Ella. All were in attendance for the ceremony. Scott Markovich resides in Guilford, CT with his wife Brandy and their two sons, Logan and Caden.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.