To provide role models for his students, it was decided to hang portraits of leaders from every field and endeavor and all walks of life in the halls of Gerstell Academy. Dr. Frederick G. Smith commissioned local artist Jerry Breen to create oil portrats of over 185 portraits of inventors, statesmen and stateswomen, scientists, explorers, athletes, artists, and humanitarians. Such diverse figures as Nelson Mandela, Marie Curie, Douglas MacArthur, Helen Keller, and Muhammed Ali are featured.
These works of art grace the walls of Gerstell Academy buildings and inspire students to follow the examples of those who went before them. Each portrait is accompanied by a brief biography summarizing the contributions and accomplishments of that person.
Our students study the biographies and leadership styles of these men and women as part of our academic curricula as well as within our leadership education program.
It is our hope that students will be motivated to lead a life dedicated to the pursuit of positive goals in the interest of making a difference in society.