We are pleased to announce the 2016 Honorees:
Elgin Baylor played 14 seasons in the NBA for the Minnesota/Los Angeles Lakers, appearing in eight NBA Finals. The No. 1 draft pick in 1958 and NBA Rookie of the Year in 1958-59, an 11-time NBA All-Star, and named to the All-NBA First Team 10 times—he and Bill Russell were the first African-American players to achieve that honor—Elgin is considered one of the game’s all-time greatest players. Because of his dazzling, acrobatic moves on the court— often seemingly hanging in midair while taking his trademark jump shot—he has been called “The Godfather of Hang Time.” Strong and graceful at 6-5 and 225 pounds, Elgin averaged 27.4 points and 13.5 rebounds during his career. In 134 playoff games, he averaged 27.0 points and 12.9 rebounds.
At one time he owned records for most points in a regular season game and a playoff game. In 1977, Elgin was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. In 1980, he was named to the NBA 35th Anniversary All-Time Team, and in 1996, he was named to the NBA 50th Anniversary All-Time Team.
After retiring, Elgin coached for the New Orleans Jazz, and in 1986 became the general manager of the Los Angeles Clippers, a position he held for 22 years. In 2006, he was named NBA Executive of the Year.
Elgin Baylor’s legacy is indelible as one of the elite players in NBA history. In an interview with the San Francisco Examiner, his former teammate Tommy Hawkins may have said it best: “Pound for pound, no one was ever as great as Elgin Baylor.”
Eric Dickerson was selected second overall in the 1983 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams. An immediate success, he established rookie records for most rushing attempts (390), most rushing yards gained (1,808) and most touchdowns rushing (18), including another two receiving touchdowns. His efforts earned him All-Pro, Pro Bowl, Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year honors.
In his second season, Dickerson continued his onslaught on the NFL record book becoming a member of the 2000 rushing yards club.
Twelve times in 1984 he gained more than 100 yards rushing, breaking the record of 100-yard games in a season held by O.J. Simpson. His 2,105 total yards rushing beat Simpson’s 1973 NFL season record of 2,003 yards. No one has since rushed for more yards in a single NFL season. Dickerson has been holding this record now for an amazing 31 years.
Dickerson retired from the NFL as the 2nd leading rusher of all-time. In 1999 he was selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He now enjoys retired life with playing lots of golf and spending time with his wife Penny and his three children Erica, Keri, and Dallis.
David M. Winfield
Dave’s professional career began in 1973, drafted out of the University of Minnesota after earning the MVP of the Men’s College Baseball World Series. Drafted by the NFL, NBA, ABA, the San Diego Padres selected him as their first round draft pick. In San Diego, never spending a day in the Minors, he became a league leader and All Star. He followed that with 8 All-Star seasons with the New York Yankees. In 1990, he joined the California Angels, followed by a magical year with the Toronto Blue Jays where he drove in the winning run of the 1992 World Series. Dave returned to his native Minnesota and reached the 3,000th hit milestone with the Twins. He ended his 22-year career after the 1995 season with the American League Champion Cleveland Indians. He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2001 — his first year of eligibility. Today he serves as Adviser to the Executive Director of the Major League Baseball Players Association.
Dave was the first active professional athlete to create a charitable Foundation, and inspired many others to do the same. For 22 years, the Winfield Foundation provided healthcare, nutritional counseling, scholarships, holiday dinners and substance abuse prevention in the 6 major league cities in which he played and beyond. This earned him numerous honors, including: the YMCA Brian Piccolo Award, the Branch Rickey Community Service Award and Major League Baseball’s Roberto Clemente Award. He was also selected as one of America’s 10 Outstanding Young Men. He’s been awarded honorary Doctorate of Laws from Syracuse University, The Thomas Jefferson School of Law and Concordia University.
Winfield has served on the boards of President Clinton’s National Service Program, Morehouse School of Medicine, Hackensack Medical Center, The Century Council, Authentify, Inc., and on the advisory boards of the Major League Baseball Players Trust, The Century Council and the Peace Corps. Today he is on the board of the MLB/MLBPA Youth Baseball Foundation, whose mission is to reestablish youth baseball across America. A long-time member of the board of the San Diego Padres, he served 12 years as Executive Vice President/Senior Advisor of the ball club..
Dave has been a studio analyst for ESPN’s Baseball Tonight, a host of the national Baseball Music Project, and hosted his own morning drive radio show, On The Ball, in Los Angeles. He served as spokesman for New York Summer Jobs for Youth, United Negro College Fund, Drug Enforcement Administration, New York Daily News, St. Paul Pioneer Press, Minnesota Board of Education and the Discovery Channel. He appeared in the movie The Last Home Run, hosted the syndicated television series Greatest Sports Legends, and appeared on Married With Children, The Drew Carey Show, Arli$$, Pros vs. Joes and Windfall.
He is one of the most respected and versatile motivational speakers on the circuit, addressing audiences from colleges to corporations such as the NCAA Men’s Baseball College World Series, Capital One, American Express, MasterCard, John Hancock, Xerox, IBM, General Motors, Bank of America and the FDIC. His dynamic presentations cover a wide range of issues: motivation & success, corporate productivity, sports & fitness, health & education, teamwork & leadership.
An accomplished author, his autobiography, Winfield: A Player’s Life was a New York Times best seller. He also wrote a drug education book, TURN IT AROUND! There’s No Room Here For Drugs; an acclaimed “how-to” called The Complete Baseball Player; a compilation of the syndicated children’s advice column called Ask Dave, and his most recent, Dropping The Ball (released in paperback as Making the Play), an in-depth look at baseball’s current problems and possible solutions. In 2016 he penned his first EBook, Winning it All. He has been a frequent contributor to the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times newspapers.
Jerry Haffey, Sr.
Jerry Haffey Sr. founded Ambrosia Treatment Centers nearly a decade ago. Over the course of its operation, Ambrosia has been responsible for helping treat over 7,500 clients and counting. Since Ambrosia’s inception, Jerry has allotted scholarships for nearly 500 clients, totaling almost $5,000,000 in addition to over $1,000,000 donated to various charities. Ambrosia has recently launched the Ambrosia Foundation, whose mission is to raise funds to help educate and treat those affected by addiction.
Jerry Haffey Sr. has carried out the true definition of altruism with a side of integrity. His devotion to making a difference in one person’s life has trickled through to making a difference in the recovery world. A man of great honor and gratitude, Jerry always refers back to his favorite statement, “We do well by doing good.”