GRAND RAPIDS, MI – It’s a year of honor and milestones for the Grand Rapids Sports Hall of Fame class of 2016, which was inducted Thursday night at Van Andel Arena. The class included:
Grand Rapids native buster Mathis, Jr. The former Heavyweight boxing champion turned professional 20 years ago and embarked on a career that led to national television fights against the top names in the sport.
Former Grand Rapids Griffins player, Travis Richards. The defenseman ranks second all-time in Griffins history with 238 career points. He played 10 seasons for the Griffins and was the first player in franchise history to have his number retired.
Katie Teft-Minasola. She competed in and finished eighth in the all-around at the U.S. Olympic Trials to earn alternate status for Team USA.
Dennis Baxter, recipient of this year’s Warren Reynolds Lifetime Achievement Award, and former recipient Lew Chamberlin joined forces in 1986 to successfully bring the Whitecaps to West Michigan.
Big Ten football official Jim Augustyn. He started his officiating career 50 years ago doing high school games in the Grand Rapids area.
And the Grand Action Committee, the Outstanding Team honoree, is celebrating 20 years since completing the transforming Van Andel Arena in October of 1996.