Chickering will speak at hall of fame induction
Janesville will be one of Doug Chickering’s last stops as executive director of the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association.
Chickering, who plans to retire July 31 after 23 years in the WIAA’s top position, will be here Saturday, May 9, as guest speaker for the 20th annual Janesville Sports Hall of Fame induction dinner at the Rotary Gardens.
The inductees will be Ann Pastula Benner, former Janesville Parker High School basketball standout; J.P. Cullen, a member of Janesville High’s 1942 Big Eight championship football team and lifelong friend of sports; Steve Ellis, former Parker pitcher and longtime pillar in Janesville Youth Baseball; Dan Ryczek, all-state quarterback on Janesville Craig’s undefeated 1974 football team; and Bob Suter, Craig’s three-sport coaching icon, who just retired from boys basketball.
Chickering, who also spoke here in 1999, will become the Janesville Sports Hall of Fame’s first speaker to make a repeat appearance. This time, it gives Janesville an opportunity to honor his 45-year career in education and the accomplishments of five inductees, who have strong ties to high school sports.
Before taking the WIAA position in 1986, Chickering was the superintendent of the Marathon School District. Since then, the WIAA has made major strides under his leadership, including the addition of private schools into the association in 2000.
Chickering completed his second term on the National Association of State High School Associations board in 2008. He also served on the board from 1990-93, completing that term as president in 1992-93, making him one the most influential sports figures in the state and nation.
Most recently among his numerous honors, Chickering received the Dave McClain Distinguished Award from the Wisconsin Football Coaches Association at Saturday night’s WFCA Hall of Fame induction dinner in Middleton. He was inducted by the football coaches in 2002 and received the same honor from the basketball coaches in 1999 and the track and field coaches in 2009.
Tickets to hear Chickering and honor the Janesville Sports Hall of Fame’s 2009 inductees must be purchased. Details on tickets will be announced later this week.
The event, sponsored by The Janesville Gazette, begins with a 5:30 p.m. reception, followed by a 6:30 dinner and the induction program.