Fr. Arnold Perham, CSV, has taught mathematics to Saint Viator High School students for more than 45 years, and even after retiring in 2001, he continues to meet with young mathematicians every morning, helping them with everything from homework to preparing for the state contest.
He enjoys working behind the scenes, but recently his tutoring drew prominent attention.
Fr. Perham was named a Heart of Gold winner by officials with the Village of Arlington Heights. Specifically, he was named the 2015 Mentor of the Year, for his work with math students at Saint Viator. He will be among 10 Hearts of Gold winners honored at a formal dinner on Feb. 21, hosted by members of the village’s Special Events Commission.
“I’m totally surprised,” Fr. Perham said, who last year celebrated 65 years of religious life as a Viatorian. “I had no idea this was coming.”
He was nominated by Saint Viator Principal Eileen Manno, who credited Fr. Perham with helping students in the Math Club, on the Math Team, in the Querbes Scholars program and in the school’s math lab.
“Fr. Perham has mentored every teacher in the department through the years,” Mrs. Manno said. “His enthusiasm for mathematics and his dedication to all students continues to make him one of the finest educators ever in our building.
“At 85 years old, his very presence in the building challenges all of us to be better educators and learners.”
President Fr. Corey Brost, C.S.V. added his praise as well, recognizing Fr. Perham not only as a mentor to students, but to himself as well, as a Viatorian.
“I can’t think of anyone who deserves this recognition more,” Fr. Corey said. “You won’t find a kinder, wiser, more intelligent person in this building. He shines God’s bright light, daily.”