San Diego, CA (June 9, 2014) – A sold out crowd welcomed the newest inductees to the U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame(www.usrugbyhalloffame.org) at the USRF Hall of Fame Induction Dinner held in Houston, Texas on Saturday, June 7, 2014, just prior to the kickoff of the U.S. Eagles match against Scotland.
The HOF inductees included four who made their biggest impact on the playing field: Tom Selfridge, Jay Hanson, Richard “Dick” Donelli and Kevin Swords; two whose biggest contributions were in coaching, Jack Clark and Ron Mayes; and two whose impact was felt most in the boardroom, Anne Barry and Terry Fleener. The Class of 2014 joins the 18 who have already been inducted into the U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame.
The night was highlighted by some impassioned and emotional speeches by both the inductees and presenters. Another highlight was the announcement at the end of the night of two donations totaling $65,000. Before long, another $42,000 was raised in the attempt to match that amount. If you would like to help us reach that match, please donate now and type in “HOF Match” in the “Other Fund” box.
The afternoon kicked off with a reception, allowing the guests to mingle with friends and members of the Class of 2014. There was no shortage of past United States National Team players and coaches in attendance. Former Eagles Bill Fraumann, John Jelaco, Brad Andrews, Jake Burkhardt, Steve Finkel, Butch Horwath, Tony Flay, Tom Billups, Chip Howard, Dan Lyle, Mike Purcell, Chris Lippert, Brian Vizard, Bob Causey, Ed Burlingham,Don James, Pat Johnson, Blane Warhurst, Rich Schurfeld and Gary Hein were on hand to congratulate their former teammates and coaches who were being inducted.
Past Eagles coaches George Betzler and 2013 Hall of Fame inductee Ray Cornbill were there to see those who played under them while supporting former U.S. National Team coaches Ron Mayes and Jack Clark.
During dinner, the guests were treated to a slideshow of pictures of the eight inductees, the past Craig Sweeney Award winners, and two slides remembering two important figures in the history of rugby in the United States who recently passed away, Dave Sitton and Paul “Boomer” Andrew.
In addition to introducing the eight new members of the Hall, the U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame also announced the 2014 Craig Sweeney Award winner, former U.S. Eagles captain and current USRF Executive Director, Brian Vizard. Past Craig Sweeney Award winners include Tom Selfridge, Brad Andrews, Jack Clark, John Jelaco and Mike Purcell, all of whom were present to congratulate Brian. The Craig Sweeney Award recipients are now recognized in the newly created “Gallery of Honors” in the U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame at www.usrugbyhalloffame.org.
The U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame and its Foundation is a 501 c 3 non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the history of U.S. Rugby; supporting the development of the game by funding programs for youth, high school and collegiate rugby; and individual player development programs.
For more information about the United States Rugby Foundation, visit our website at www.usrugbyfoundation.org or contact Executive Director Brian Vizard at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 619-233-0765.