Bedford Avenue & Quentin Road
Brooklyn, NY 11229
As of April 2006, James Madison High School's Wall of Distinction honors 34 alumni. These include: 2 serving United States Senators, a United States Supreme Court Justice, 4 Nobel Prize winners, philanthropists, doctors, educators, athletes, artists, entertainers, and a New York City firefighter who perished on September 11, 2001. These honorees represent the excellence of young people growing up and being educated in New York, the greatest city in the world.
The "Wall" represents the opportunity to recognize the extraordinary achievements of our alumni and honor the school that prepared them. These distinguished graduates have been recognized and honored by the High School and Alumni Association by induction into the "Wall of Distinction" which is proudly displayed in the Main Lobby of James Madison High School. Of equal importance the "Wall" will serve as a Beacon of Inspiration to the hundreds of thousands of students who will view it during this millennium.
Each year, several new members will be inducted so that within the decade, the "Wall" will be filled with an impressive array of alumni.
Dick Kossoff 1953, chairman
JMHS Alumni Association Wall of Distinction Committee
Honored April 30, 2006

Honorees who attended the ceremony at JMHS:
Lawrence Zicklin 1953
President of major Wall Street securities firm and philanthropist.
Barry Mann 1956
One of the most prolific songwriters of the pop era, he and his wife, Cynthia Weil,
have received over 100 pop, country, and R & B awards.
Elaine Malbin 1948
Renowned soprano opera singer.
John Robbins 1950
Microbiologist who developed life saving vaccines
to combat infants' and childrens' diseases.
Stephen Trachtenberg 1955
President of George Washington University.
honored in absentia:
Bill Gaines 1939
Founder and publisher of "Mad Magazine" and other popular magazines.
Gary Becker 1948
Nobel Prize winning economist.
Lawrence Kasha 1950
Tony Award winning producer/director of numerous Broadway plays including,
"Applause", "She Loves Me", "Woman of the Year", and "Funny Girl."
Norman Coleman 1966
U.S. Senator from Minnesota, and former Mayor of St. Paul
Rudy LaRusso 1955 *
One of Madison's greatest athletes, an All-American basketball player at Dartmouth,
and an outstanding professional for the Los Angeles Lakers.
* Deceased
JMHS 1955 Wall of Distinction Honorees
Rudy LaRusso ~ Stephen Joel Trachtenberg
As President of The George Washington University (GWU) in the District of Columbia, Stephen Joel Trachtenberg has established himself as one of America's most important educators and prolific writer on issues of higher education.
At Madison he was one of the few graduates to serve as both Editor of the school paper (The Highway) and President of the SGO (Student Government Organization).
After earning degrees from Columbia, Yale and Harvard, he began a distinguished career in education. Included were appointments as Vice President at Boston University, President of the University of Hartford, and the President of GW (1988).
The author of several books, he has been appointed to numerous public and educational committees and presented with honorary degrees and awards from a wide cross section of academic, governmental and public institutions.
In his biography he notes that he is "an unreconstructed native of Brooklyn"!
Honored 2001
Sandra Abramowitz Feldman 1956 *
Ruth Bader Ginsburg 1950
Barry Commoner 1933
Martin Glickman 1935 *
Garson Kanin 1929
Stanley H. Kaplan 1935
Charles Schumer 1967
Robert M. Solow 1940
Honored 2002
Jane E. Brody 1958
Stanley Cohen 1939
"Cousin" Bruce Morrow 1953
Sylvia Field Porter 1929
Stephen M. Schwebel 1946
Samuel O. Thier 1953
Frank J. Torre 1950
Honored 2004
Irwin (Shamforoff) Shaw 1929 *
Marvin Miller 1933
Andrew "Fuzzy" Levane 1940
Stanley Kamow 1941
Martin Perl 1941
Claire Kantoff Shulman 1942
Esther Rudomin Hautzig 1948
Carole Klein King 1958
Daniel Suhr 1982 *
* Deceased
Rudy LaRusso was one of Madison's greatest basketball players, he was All-East at Dartmouth and a four time All-Star for the Los Angeles Lakers professional team.
As an All-City player under Jammy Moskowitz, he led Madison to the PSAL final in 1955. At Dartmouth he propelled the team to Ivy League titles in 1958-9 and to NCAA berth. His rebounding record of 18 per game still stands. In 1959 he joined the Minneapolis Lakers of the NBA (they later became the Los Angeles Lakers). During the next decade he was one of the dominant power forwards in the NBA, excelling in rebounding and defense. In addition he once scored 50 points in a game. As a four time All-Star he helped the Lakers reach the NBA finals several times.
In retrospect, wherever Rudy played, the team usually won! Following his retirement he worked as an investment banker, sports agent, and entrepreneur in Los Angeles.
Wall of Distinction