What was amazing to me was how little context we had for evaluating teachers. So here are my thoughts on the notables. Leave your own nominations in Comments. And I agree it is better to point out the good ones and forget the others (on whose merits our opinions might diverge)...
Hall of Fame
Sal Costanza (Counselor). I think he recommended Occidental College to me, which I was very grateful for.
Dick Friss (English). I didn't take his class for some reason, but occasionally dropped in, earning the name "The Interloper". It was only after watching the Bill Moyers special on Joseph Campbell that I became more interested in mythology and wished that I had taken his class. Clint Stewart organized some softball games, and he played.
Tom Hall (English). It took until my senior year of HS to learn how to write. My previous English teachers didn't do much to help my writing, but Mr. Hall told me directly that my writing needed a lot of work...and we did work on it, frequently. It paid off in college and now I spend much of my time writing manuscripts. Plus, we got to watch "Apocalypse Now" in class, while reading "Heart of Darkness".
Tony Martinez (Spanish). I think everyone remembers this as one of their best classes. We didn't just learn Spanish, but the conversations we had IN Spanish were really interesting. I still have the cassette of all of the songs that we would listen to and try to transcribe the lyrics. Plus, he gave me the opportunity to do an exchange in Madrid for a month. It's very sad that he is no longer with us.
Ed Arbuckle (Math). He was notable not for the math (though he was a good teacher), but for his aphorisms and catch phrases. I compiled a list of them and a few years after graduation went back to visit NG and gave it to him. "Amato, you are screwing up like a soup sandwich!" "You'll be as happy as an oversexed goat!" "When they gave California an enema, they put the hose in Bakersfield." "Cosecant...sounds like a Norwegian swear word." Unfortunately I think I lost the file sometime back...He would sneak outside to smoke cigarettes between classes. One time he decided to quit, and became really surly. That was the week, I think, that Kristin Hicks got kicked out of the class. She was upset about the way that rounding worked...it was a bad day to make a comment!
John Gishe (Math). He taught us calculus, he taught us philosophy. He was a legend, and is still teaching.
Jim Wilcox (Physics). He was a strange guy, but I actually learned a lot in his class, and we did some fun experiments.
Santo Alioto (Spanish, History). Probably the most entertaining teacher I had (or a tie with Arbuckle and Spagle). The sophomore year history class was very lame, but the Junior Year class was really fun. We even watched a selection of "Treasure of the Sierra Madre"...."Badges? We don't need no stinking badges!" (But why did we watch that? I forget the context). He was always dropping obscure references in class.
Betty Spagle (Government). Another great teacher, with a good attitude. She signed my yearbook "Why is a raven like a writing desk?" Plus, in her yearbook photo she is posing with a stuffed panda. [Correction: stuffed panda backpack]
Jeff Spoden (Social Studies). I never took a class from him, but he organized some great events. I think there was one on nuclear weapons/disarmament, and another involving some military vets, and the guy that got his legs run over by a train, during a protest.