Sports Hall of Fame looking for new board members

With the 35th annual Alpena Sports Hall of Fame banquet coming up next spring, the Hall of Fame Board of Directors is looking for new membership.

The board currently has about five openings as it prepares to finalize the ballot of nominees to be considered for the 2017 Hall of Fame class.

The board only meets a few times a year, but Hall of Fame President Gary Mischley said the board plays an important role in keeping the Hall of Fame going.

“There’s not a lot of time spent, but the board of directors represents the Hall of Fame and helps set up the annual induction banquet in May. The board also decides who is on the Hall of Fame ballot, reads the resumes of all the nominees and helps decide if a person qualifies,” Mischley said.

Board positions are open to anyone who is interested and many board members are usually members of the Alpena Sports Hall of Fame Association, which ultimately casts its votes for three nominees who are inducted each spring. A fourth selection, usually a senior selection, is chosen by the Hall of Fame’s senior committee.

Terms are usually repetitious and those interested in serving can do so as long as they would like.

In nearly 35 years, the board has seen a variety of people serve including Alpena Sports Hall of Famers, local media members, former coaches, former players and people who have been around Alpena sports.

Having members with different sports backgrounds helps give the Hall of Fame a variety of perspectives when making selections for the Hall of Fame ballot.

“If you have one or two people do it, you don’t have perspective,” Mischley said. “When you have X-amount of people they’ll know someone (involved in sports) and they’ll contact them.”

“You may be giving very little time, but what you do give comes out big.”

Since it began 1983, the Hall of Fame has inducted 171 members over 34 years and several communities in Northeast Michigan have started Halls of Fame similar to Alpena’s.

Mischley said teamwork among the board will be important to keep the Hall of Fame going in the future.

“The Hall of Fame started to honor those who hard worked hard (in athletics) in Alpena,” Mischley said. “Alpena’s had so many outstanding athletes and has really been a leader.”

Anyone interested in serving on the board can contact Mischley at 354-2247.

Candidates who will be considered for the 2017 Hall of Fame ballot with their respective sports in parenthesis are: Tom Atkinson (football coach); Melissa Brousseau O’Dell (basketball); Wayne Christopherson (running); Jon ‘Kirby’ Cook (hockey); John Cunningham (gymnastics); Don Deadman (gymnastics); Charlie DeCaire (football); Cindy DeRocher (softball); Shannon Domrase (softball); Vern Gauthier (bowling); Rachael Gebauer (softball); Jan Kaiser (softball); Bob Kelley (baseball); Jim Kurtz (basketball); Greg Mattison (gymnastics); Mark McConnell (boxing); Robert McKay (softball); Phil Oles (football); Dave Pokorzynski (hockey); Tony Pokorzynski (gymnastics); Wayne Precord (track); Pete Roznowski (hockey); Tony Skiba Jr. (hockey); Wayne Socia (football); Dick Straley (football); Lyle VanWormer (archery); Theresa Walchak (cheerleading); Pam Weise Murphy (basketball); Mike Wisniewski (softball) and Ken Wooster (horseman).