|In a break from the tradition of showering honor after honor on today’s athletes, a move is under way to bring overdue recognition to the people who help athletes become great. The Montgomery County Coaches Hall of Fame has been founded with the express purpose of honoring the outstanding coaching legacy that has developed over the years in Montgomery County.
A select group of people with a vast and varied background in Montgomery County sports was formed to serve as the selection committee. Annually, this group goes through a list of nominees for a new class of Hall of Fame inductees.
The induction banquet is held at Westover Country Club in Jeffersonville, Pa. and always takes place in the fall – often times on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.
In founding the Hall of Fame, the committee has formed an alliance with the Norristown Police Athletic League. Norristown PAL will be the recipient of funds from the induction banquet and houses the Hall of Fame in a prominent area of the new PAL Center. Formerly an armory in Norristown, the new PAL Center underwent a major renovation and houses a gymnasium, a learning center and a computer center for use by area youngsters.
John Pergine, a legendary area athlete who was an All-America linebacker at Notre Dame and played in the National Football League with the Los Angeles Rams and the Washington Redskins, was elected the first president of the Montgomery County Coaches Hall of Fame. He then appointed Dale Hood vice president, Jim Davis chairman of the Selection Committee and Tony Leodora secretary/treasurer. A large Advisory Board, consisting of prominent individuals throughout Montgomery County, was formed and handled operation of the banquet. Currently, there have been some changes as President John Pergine stepped down, but remains as part of the advisory board and legendary Sportswriter and PA State Hall of Famer, Tony has been elected as the new President. Jim Davis has retired from the board, Tom Catagnus is now chairman of the Selection Committee.
Anyone born or raised in Montgomery County, or anyone who was born outside the county but spent a significant portion of their coaching career in the county is eligible for induction to the Hall. Nominations can be made by contacting any member of the selection committee or by writing to MCCHOF, 803 Northview Blvd., Norristown, Pa. 19401.