Retirees: Marilyn Ray

Marilyn Ray, social studies teacher, has worked in education for 36 years, and will be retiring from WHHS after teaching here for six. 

Ray spent the majority of her career teaching at Sycamore High School, where she took over 750 students on trips to Europe, which was the highlight of her career. 

“Memories of staying up all night, talking, on the banks of the river in Paris are unmatched,” Ray said.

After being at Sycamore for 25 years, Ray began her retirement, but two years later she received a call from Cincinnati Public Schools. 

“They needed an experienced teacher immediately,” Ray said. “Mrs. Mcgill, [who already taught at WHHS], was my student, and she told them to call me.”

She had zero interest in returning to the classroom, but the idea of teaching at WHHS, a mecca for broad and worldly education, intrigued her. 

“[When they told me] it was Walnut Hills calling, I asked when do I start,” Ray said. “They called Friday, and I was in the classroom on Monday.”

In her time teaching at WHHS, she has grown fond of the diverse student body, and the diverse set of opinions and opportunities that has come along with it. 

“I’ve loved working here. With the diversity, I’m able to feel connected to my work outside of the classroom. I’ve been a leader working with immigrants in the city,” Ray said. “I have students from all over the world here.” 

Ray’s life partner is Italian, and they spend their summers in Italy where she hopes they will spend more time together during her retirement. Ray’s love for Italy and Italian culture led her to find her passion in teaching AP European History, which she has continued to pursue at WHHS.

“My love of Europe and the lifestyle there, the history there, I just love it,” Ray said. “Euro just always resonated with me, I’ll miss sharing that with students.” 

However, her love for teaching has coupled with the joy of instilling good virtue in the lives she touches as an educator. 

“To whom much is given, much is required,” Ray said. “Much has been given to Walnut students. I hope they go out and make a difference in the world, because Cincinnati needs it.”