The 95th annual National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Summer Meeting will be held June 28-July 2 at the Boston Marriott Copley Place in Boston, Massachusetts. The NFHS is the national leadership organization for high school athletic and performing arts activities and is composed of state high school associations in the 50 states plus the District of Columbia.
About 900 individuals are expected to attend the Summer Meeting, including staff members and board members from the 51 member associations.
The 32nd annual induction ceremony of the National High School Hall of Fame and discussion of several key issues affecting high school sports and performing arts highlight this year’s agenda.
Five outstanding former high school athletes, including legendary Cleveland Browns’ tight end Ozzie Newsome from Alabama, pro basketball star Anfernee “Penny” Hardaway from Tennessee, former Major League Baseball players Michael Devereaux (Wyoming) and Casey Blake (Iowa), and track and field star Suzy Powell (California) headline the 2014 class of the National High School Hall of Fame.
Newsome was a three-sport standout at Colbert County High School in Leighton, Alabama, before becoming one of the greatest tight ends in NFL history. Hardaway scored more than 3,000 points in his career at Memphis (Tennessee) Treadwell High School and later was an All-American at Memphis State University (now the University of Memphis) and a four-time all-star in the NBA. Blake was a four-sport athlete at Indianola (Iowa) High School and was named one of the top 10 athletes in Iowa history before enjoying a 13-year professional career. Devereaux was one of the greatest high school athletes in Wyoming history at Kelly Walsh High School in Casper. His 12-year professional baseball career included two World Series wins with the Los Angeles Dodgers and Atlanta Braves. Powell set the national high school discus record at Thomas Downey High School in Modesto, California, which stood for 15 years. She later competed in three Olympics.
Among the topics that will be discussed at the 45 workshops during the NFHS Summer Meeting are promoting positive academic impact of participation in activities, social media marketing, components of successful spirit programs, participation opportunities for students with disabilities, sportsmanship, branding, transgender policies, values of middle school interscholastic activities and legal issues.
The Summer Meeting will kick off on June 29 with the Opening General Session featuring a “We Are High School®” student program. Along with the seventh annual National High School Spirit of Sport Award ceremony, the NFHS will present – for the first time – its performing arts counterpart – the National High School Heart of the Arts Award.
Zach Pickett of Shingle Springs (California) Ponderosa High School will receive the National High School Spirit of Sport Award, and Leia Schwartz of Miami (Florida) Coral Reef High School will receive the National High School Heart of the Arts Award.
The Second General Session on June 30 will feature NFHS President Harold Slemmer, NFHS Executive Director Bob Gardner and USA Paralympic Athlete Jerome Singleton, Jr. The Closing General Session on Wednesday, July 2, will feature best-selling author and humorist Ross Shafer.
The Summer Meeting Luncheon will be held at 12 p.m. on July 1, and will feature the presentation of NFHS Citations to 12 individuals. State association honorees include Paul Hoey of Connecticut, Brad Cashman of Pennsylvania, Gary Phillips of Georgia, Sandy Searcy of Indiana, Debra Velder of Nebraska, Wadie Moore of Arkansas, Marie Ishida of California and Gary Matthews of Alaska.
Other Citation recipients are Jeff Hilyer of Alabama (NFHS Officials Association), Tom Zimorski of Virginia (NFHS Coaches Association), Rosanne Malek of Iowa (NFHS Music Association) and Ken Pickering of South Dakota (NFHS Speech, Debate and Theatre Association).
The Summer Meeting will conclude at 6 p.m., July 2 with the induction of the 2014 class of the National High School Hall of Fame.
High school coaches slated for induction this year include Bob McDonald, basketball coach at Chisholm (Minnesota) High School who retired this year after a legendary 59-year coaching career; Morgan Gilbert, who retired last year from Tuckerman (Arkansas) High School after winning more than 1,000 games as both a basketball coach and baseball coach during a 48-year career; Katie Horstman, who started the girls sports program at Minster (Ohio) High School in 1972 and led the girls track team to eight state championships; and Frank Pecora, who becomes Vermont’s first inductee in the National High School Hall of Fame after leading Northfield (Vermont) High School to 15 state baseball championships.
Other members of the 2014 induction class are George Demetriou, a football and baseball official from Colorado Springs, Colorado, who is a state and national officiating leader in both sports; Sheryl Solberg, a state and national leader in the development of girls athletics programs during her 34 years as assistant to the executive secretary of the North Dakota High School Activities Association; and Randy Pierce, a state and national debate leader who coached debate at Pattonville High School in Maryland Heights, Missouri, for almost 40 years before retiring in 2012.
This press release was written by Matthew Costakis, a 2014 summer intern in the NFHS Publications/Communications Department. He will be a junior this fall at DePauw (Indiana) University studying communications and English writing.