Five elected to Community Sports Hall of Fame

The late Gary Arthur, Bob Falk, Paul Goldenberg, Jean Hodges and Louise Waxler will be inducted into the 2011Howard County Community Sports Hall of Fame at a ceremony slated for the Turf Valley Resort and Conference Center Oct. 15.

Gary was the beloved former director of recreation and parks before his death in 2010. He was responsible for the many achievements and innovations that we, who use recreation and parks facilities, will enjoy for many years to come. Under his direction, the Timbers of Troy Golf Course became a reality, and he introduced artificial turf on public fields. While he served as director, the Meadowbrook Athletic Complex was built, and the Glenwood Community Center, now named after him, opened. The North Laurel Community Center and the Robinson Nature Center became more than a future plan. More importantly, Gary was a true human being, open to any suggestion that would make his department the best in the State ofMaryland.

Bob Falk was Mr. Howard County Youth Hockey for many years. He served as coach, team manager, travel team coordinator and, for more than a decade, as a member of the Howard Huskies board of directors and as its president and treasurer. Bob has retired from any official role with HCYHC but he remains on hand as for any need that may arise.

Paul Goldenberg joined the Howard County Striders in 1984 and was elected to the board of directors the next year. Twenty-six years later he is still on board. Paul has been president of the Striders and, most importantly, he has been coordinator for many of the races held here. Paul established the Striders' scholar/athlete program which has to date distributed more than $50,000 to worthy students.

Jean Hodges has been the driving force in elevating the Kangaroo Kids and the sport of jump rope to new heights. She has done much of the behind the scenes work for this organization for three decades, coordinating the first Kangaroo Kids Festival in 1985 and organizing trips to Canada, Australia, Europe and Japan. She also helped create USA Jump Rope, the largest jump rope organization in the country, and she served as its first president.

Louise Waxler has been involved in soccer at the local and professional levels since 1985. She was the director of the Columbia Invitational Soccer Tournament from 1985-2006 taking it from a local Memorial Day tournament to a nationally recognized one. She served as director of the Soccer Association of Columbia Program from 1989-1996 and founded Kicks Against Breast Cancer, a women's intercollegiate charity tournament that benefits the Claudia Mayer Cancer Resource Center. She has also served on the professional level as director of operations for the Washington Freedom and General Manager of the Philadelphia Independence

On the podium at last

Pete DellaCroce has been running in races and triathlons for almost 10 years now and has never had a podium finish. That was until June 26 at the Celebration Sprint Triathlon when he and partner Reed Carter took third place in the men's relay.

Pete, a member of the board of directors of the ARC of Howard County, established Team Embrace to participate in races and triathlons in support of ARC and the services it provides for those who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. Reed did the swimming and running and Pete the biking.

Both he and Reed are inspirational role models for all of us.

The team's Wendy Rumrill also took first in the female 40-49 age group. So it was an impressive showing by Team Embrace in its third year of existence.

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