YMCA Celebrates Volleyball Hall of Fame

May 27, 2009, 10:46 p.m. (ET)

Release courtesy of YMCA

CHICAGO (May 22, 2009) — YMCA of the USA hosted its annual Volleyball Hall of Fame Luncheon Celebration on Friday, May 22, 2009. This event highlights significant contributions that individuals and YMCAs have made to the development of volleyball in the YMCA. This year’s Hall of Fame inductees are the late Edward Butler, the late Harold Petersen, the late Roland Stone, and Donald Roderick.

“We welcome four outstanding sportsmen into the YMCA Volleyball Hall of Fame,” said Neil J. Nicoll, President and CEO of YMCA of the USA. “As players, coaches and referees, these honorees have made vast contributions to YMCAs across the country, whether it was by starting volleyball clinics for low-income students or forming volleyball teams. These men are truly deserving of this honor.”

The YMCA Volleyball Hall of Fame was established in 1995 in celebration of the sport’s 100th anniversary in the YMCA. In 1895, William Morgan, a Y instructor who felt that the popular sport of basketball was too strenuous for businessmen, invented volleyball at the Holyoke (Mass.) YMCA. Morgan blended elements of basketball, tennis and handball into the game and called it mintonette. The sport was renamed "volleyball" in 1896 to better describe how the ball went back and forth over the net. Volleyball’s popularity quickly spread around the globe and became an official Olympic team sport in 1964. Today, nearly 1,000 YMCAs offer volleyball programs for kids and adults.

Each year, the YMCA Volleyball Hall of Fame Committee selects individuals and YMCAs for induction into the YMCA Volleyball Hall of Fame. With the addition of this year’s inductees, 77 individuals and 21 YMCAs have been inducted. YMCA memorabilia and historical data can be found in the National Volleyball Hall of Fame in Holyoke, Mass. Efforts are underway to establish a permanent site for the YMCA’s hall of fame.

This year’s Volleyball Hall of Fame Luncheon Celebration will take place at 1 p.m. at the Hilton Minneapolis Hotel, 1001 Marquette Avenue. For more information, please contact Dick Jones at 614-436-5711.

2009 YMCA Volleyball Hall of Fame Honorees:

The late Edward Butler was known for giving so much of himself to the game of volleyball. His 17-year volleyball career began in 1934 at the Wilkes-Barre YMCA (Pa.). Edward would later play volleyball at YMCAs in cities Plainfield, New Brunswick and Newark in New Jersey, and in Jamaica in New York. After his playing days, Edward became a coach and manager, coaching men’s and women’s teams and seeking to improve the game of volleyball at the YMCA of Perth Amboy (N.J.), and the West Side Branch of the YMCA of Greater New York. Edward was also a nationally certified referee for more than 10 years.

The late Harold P. Petersen first became associated with volleyball in 1934 at the Midwest Athletic Club in Chicago. He played in the Park and Recreation League with the Tall Peoples Clinic from 1943-1952, when he became associated with the Lawson YMCA Volleyball Team. During his career, Harold helped promote volleyball college tournaments at the then George Williams College, as well as the visit of the Japanese Women’s Volleyball Team to Chicago. He later participated in Chicago’s Pan-American Games by serving as Chair of one of the volleyball committees, holding volleyball clinics, and helping to certify many regional and national officials. USA Volleyball recognized Harold with many achievements over the years, including the George J. Fisher Leader in Volleyball Award in 1969.

The late Roland I. Stone, affectionately known as “Stoney,” was a native son of Coraopolis, Pa. He began his volleyball career in 1953 in the Coraopolis YMCA’s church league and a year later started competing in USA Volleyball tournaments. He played on and coached teams in national competition and served as a regional and national referee. In 1973, Stoney was elected to the USA Volleyball Board of Directors and served on the board until 1982. Among his achievements, Stoney received the George J. Fisher Leader in Volleyball Award in 1976 and the Dr. Neville A. Booth Commissioner’s Award in 1986.

Donald P. Roderick began his 62-year involvement with the Licking County YMCA in the 1940s at age 10 by working the coat check at the weekend dances for high school. He would become interested in volleyball in the 1960s and began his volleyball career at the Columbus Central YMCA. Don’s team placed seventh in the nation at the USA Volleyball Open Championships. Don went on to start offering week-long volleyball clinics for elementary students at the Licking County YMCA. Low-income youth were able to participate in these clinics at no cost. Don used proceeds from the clinics to purchase volleyball equipment. Don also started and coached a high school girls’ traveling volleyball team as well as a men’s traveling volleyball team that played other YMCA teams all over Ohio.

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About YMCAs
The nation's 2,686 YMCAs serve 21 million people each year, including nearly 10 million children under the age of 18. YMCAs respond to critical social needs by drawing on their collective strength as one of America's largest not-for-profit community service organizations. Through a variety of programs and services focused on the holistic development of children and youth, family strengthening, and health and well-being for all, YMCAs unite men, women and children of all ages, faiths, backgrounds, abilities and income levels. From urban areas to small towns, YMCAs have proudly served America's communities for nearly 160 years by building healthy spirit, mind and body for all. Visit www.ymca.net to find your local YMCA.

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