Former North Colonie physical education teacher Arthur Walker passed away earlier this week at the age of 89. Walker joined the North Colonie district in 1956 as an elementary physical education teacher. He moved to Shaker High School when it opened in 1958 in the same capacity. Over the years, Walker was a dedicated baseball, basketball and football coach. He was a mentor to so many of his players throughout the years.
In 1965, Walker became the head teacher for Webster Hall and, in 1969, became the hall principal for Taft Hall. In January 1971, he was appointed as principal of Shaker High School until his retirement in 1991. During his time as principal, Shaker High School achieved Blue Ribbon status from the U.S. Department of Education, a national program that recognizes schools of excellence.
The football field at Shaker High School was named in his honor in 1992, and in September 2019, the North Colonie Central School District officially cut the ribbon on the new Arthur E. Walker turf field, in honor of Walker’s more than 35 years of service as coach, teacher and administrator.
“Art Walker embodied the spirit of Shaker High School and the North Colonie Central School District,” said Superintendent Joe Corr. “He showed exemplary dedication to his students, athletes, community and staff. He was a mentor to many, including me. His legacy endures.”
The faculty and staff who worked under Walker describe him as a person who left a lasting impact and one who played an active, encouraging and mentoring role in students’ lives. He is labeled by many as their “biggest cheerleader.”