Phillip M. Otto, of 430 South 3rd Street, Lehighton, received his Bachelor's of Science Degree in Psychology from DeSales University on May 21. He participated in the ACCESS Degree Program through the Saucon Valley Campus. He maintained a 3.0 grade point average throughout his coursework at DeSales.

A 1984 graduate of Lehighton Area High School, Phillip is the son of Robert P. Otto of Lehighton and the late Bonita L. (Whiteman) Otto. He is the husband of the former Kimberly Werner of Lehighton and the father of four children; Taylor Otto and Kelsey Rebovich of Lehighton and Matthew Rebovich and Lauren Rebovich of Bethlehem.

Phillip owns and operates Otto's PitStop Deli at 191 South 1st Street in Lehighton which celebrated its one year anniversary in April of this year. The deli serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner as well as ice cream and ice cream cakes, seven days a week.

Phillip was honored with a surprise birthday/graduation party at Flow Restaurant and Bar in Jim Thorpe on April 30th. He dedicated his degree to the memory of his mother; whom he credited for encouraging him as a high school student and having him promise her that he would obtain a college education. He noted that although it took him a long time; he was very proud to have kept his promise to his mother. He plans to continue in a Master's Graduate Degree Program in the Fall. Phillip also credits his wife Kimberly for giving him the extra drive, strength and encouragement to complete his degree. Phillip is proud of his accomplishment but he insists that it still means more to him now because he kept the promise that he made to his mother before she passed away in 1981. Though it took him quite awhile, Phillip hopes that she is looking down smiling proudly at him.