Tom & Bonnie Otten

Tom Otten, Elder Class of 1964, began working in as a student worker during his sophomore year at Elder High School in 1961 and has never left!  He continued to work at Elder throughout college as an office worker, custodian, and coach.  After graduating from Thomas More, Tom began his teaching career in the Elder Mathematics Department.  This was a pivotal year for Tom. Not only did he begin teaching at his alma Mater, but he married the love of his life, Bonnie, in July, 1968.  In 1971, Tom became Assistant Principal and later took on the role of Business Manager.  In 1997, he became Elder High School’s 10th principal.  Tom and Bonnie have 5 children – Michelle, Paul ‘90, Katie, John ’99, and Betsy – and 12 grandchildren.  Throughout their marriage, they have always worked as a team - raising their children, supporting each other’s dreams, and sharing a commitment to Elder High School and the greater community.  Bonnie is a former Elderama Chair, past Girl Scout leader and neighborhood director, cantor at St. Antoninus, and currently volunteers for numerous school and community organizations, including the Literacy Network of Greater Cincinnati.  Tom’s love of Elder is contagious and apparent in all he does (and wears)!  As principal, he has brought Elder into the forefront of technology; launched the Elder Honors Program to instill academic excellence, leadership, team unity, and community outreach to prepare students for life beyond Elder; organized the Price Hill Pacer, a 5K race benefiting Santa Maria Community Services and Price Hill Will; and awarded over 100 diplomas to World War II veterans who left Elder early to fight for their country. He instituted the much-loved Principal’s Pancake Breakfast.  He also has led three capital campaigns that have strengthened Elder’s standard of academics, improved the physical plant, enlarged the campus and expanded the financial aid program.  In addition to his dedication to Elder High School, Tom supports the Price Hill community through his involvement in Santa Maria, Price Hill Will, Citizens on Patrol, and numerous other community-building organizations.  Tom and Bonnie have worked in tandem to create a fantastic team that has touched so many lives.  In May of 2014, an anonymous Elder benefactor established a scholarship in Tom & Bonnie’s name.