2006 Hall of Fame
A true pioneer in the world of high school sports, not only in Calgary, but also within the Alberta Schools’ Athletic Association and the Canadian School Sports Federation.
John Mayell joined the staff of the Calgary School Board in 1940. His major contribution to the welfare of Albertan’s young and old has been as an educator. Specifically, following his service for his country during World War II, he served as a teacher, coach, counselor and administrator for Calgary schools. He earned the highest praise for the enlightened and dedicated leadership he brought to his work.
As Supervisor of Physical Education and Director of Athletics for the Calgary Public School Board, Mayell designed and carried out one of the most advanced and effective programs available in Canada at the time.
As an administrator, John Mayell made his mark within the city of Calgary as a member of the Advisory Board for Sports and Recreation; his new and progressive suggestions led many discussion of this board.
John was a founding father of the ASAA, acting as secretary to the first meeting, and went on to become the association’s second President, a role in which he excelled and helped set in place the policy cornerstones that make the ASAA what it is today. He was recognized with the ASAA’s highest honour, the Robert H. Routledge Award of Merit in 1971 and his other accolades are too numerous to mention.
Hired as the first Executive Director of the ASAA, Lorne led the association through the third and fourth decades of its existence - a time of growth in association initiatives and addition of new sports. In addition to using his dedication and superb organizational skills to set the ASAA on a solid Lorne was largely responsible for negotiating with the provincial government to secure funding support for school sports.
Following an active and successful high school athletic career, Lorne obtained his Bachelor of Education and Physical Education from the University of Alberta, later getting his masters from the U of A.
He went on to spend a long teaching career at St. Albert High School, coaching most high school sports in addition to active involvement in drama, yearbook and school government. Lorne also found time to coach hockey and other community sports, particularly where his kids were involved. His excellent organizational skills involved him as vice-president of the Alberta summer games in 1978 and an active role during the commonwealth games in 1978, Universiade in 1983, and more.
Lorne was the consummate volunteer, taking on roles like North Central Zone President and coordinator of several championship events; he was also ASAA Badminton Commissioner and Executive Committee member before taking on the role of Executive Director in 1975. In retirement, Lorne was an active member of his community, successfully lobbying for new recreation facilities and golfing regularly until his untimely passing in 2004.
Jim Whitelaw from Lethbridge, Alberta was a fixture on the high school sport coaching scene from the 1940-s through to the late 1970’s.
He spent almost 30 years coaching basketball and football at Lethbridge Collegiate Institute. In basketball, was a lifelong student of the game and spent considerable time learning from the best. Jim’s teams competed in 13 ASAA provincial championships and won five of those as early as 1958 and as late as 1979. In addition to good discipline and the respect of his players, Jim attributes his success to focus on the fundamentals of the game, especially footwork drills, and being able to quickly adapt to the offence of opposing teams.
In football, Jim’s teams captured 19 league championships and he was a strong advocate for football to become an ASAA sport, which occurred a few years after his retirement. One can only wonder how many ASAA football championships coach Whitelaw might have won had there been such a thing during his tenure as coach at LCI.
Jim was also active within the ASAA, having been a founder and regular attendee of ASAA meetings on behalf of the South West Zone. Amongst other awards Jim has won, he is a former ASAA Routledge Award winner and inductee into the Lethbridge Sports Hall of Fame. He spent a career serving the young people of Lethbridge and Alberta.
An early leader in school sport in southern Alberta, Marge made her mark in the coaching ranks. Marge was hired at Lethbridge Collegiate Institute as the first Physical Education specialist in the district.
Marge coached girls basketball at LCI from 1954 to 1967, capturing three provincial titles during her coaching career. Following the creation of the ASAA and the first boys championship in basketball in 1956, Marge played a significant role in heightening the awareness of the importance and value of athletics for girls in schools and successfully lobbied for the inclusion of girls basketball as an ASAA sanctioned activity.
Marge recalls a memory was a one point loss in the provincial final in 1962 - to which she responded with back to back wins in 1963 and 1964 - the sign of a true competitor.
In 1968, the ASAA honoured Marge by naming the ASAA’s 4A girls volleyball trophy in her honour. Other honours afforded Marge include Jaycees citizen of the year 1986, Induction into Lethbridge Sports Hall of Fame in 1991 and the LCI wall of distinction in 1997. Marge has served on several volunteer community boards.
Her team from 1963/64 summed her up by saying “congratulations go to Miss Clark, who we think, is one of the best coaches in the province of Alberta.”
Dr. Herb McLachlin
Dr. Herb McLachlin, a true leader in Alberta Sport and recreation in Alberta for well over half a century is being inducted as an official tonight as well as a founder of the ASAA.
Herb was an early advocate of officiating, and began training officials in 1948. He was a founder of both the Edmonton and Alberta Basketball Officials Association which has grown from 9 to 178 members and he also served as President of that association and the Canadian Basketball Officials Association.
Herb officiated the first basketball championship of the ASAA and many following that. He and other colleagues recruited young officials, trained and mentored them over several decades and he was clearly a driving force in the development and quality of officiating we see in basketball today. His philosophy in providing well trained officials was to further the ideals of good fair competition.
He was an active participant in ASAA Board meetings over many years, and made contributions in several other areas as well including, but not limited to: selector, Canadian Olympic team; Dean of the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation at the U of A; statistician, CFL from 1953 to the present; and Board member for both the 1978 Commonwealth Games and 1983 Universiade.
Dr. McLachlin has received several awards including the Queens Jubilee Gold Medal and several inductions including the University of Alberta Sports Wall of Fame and has made more contributions to the ASAA both directly and indirectly than we could hope to cover tonight.
A lifetime basketball official and student of the game, Roger Takoaka is one of those unsung heroes to which we owe so much.
Roger began his officiating career while attending Western Canada High School in the late 40’s where students were encouraged to officiate the girls interschool program. Following graduation, roger continued to officiate, often having to take public transit to the various school gym locations. He joined the Alberta Basketball officials association in 1953.
In 1955, he was recruited by John Mayell to officiate his first game for the Calgary Senior High Schools’ Athletic Association and in 1956 was chosen to officiate the inaugural ASAA provincial final alongside his mentor and fellow inductee Herb McLachlin. This would be the first of many ASAA championships and high school matches Roger would officiate over the course of several decades. The ASAA’s 2A girls basketball sportsmanship award was named the Roger Takoaka trophy in his honour.
Roger was a charter member of the Calgary Basketball Officials association and spent 14 years as commissioner from 1968 to 1982. He refereed the first games played by the U of C dinosaurs in 1965 and spent 20 years officiating basketball at the post-secondary level. Roger served two terms as President of the Alberta Basketball officials association and also served on the Basketball Alberta Executive. He has been recognized with awards from the Calgary Booster Club, the Canadian Basketball Officials Association and Basketball Canada.
Roger retired from officiating after 35 years of involvement during which time the number of high schools in Calgary grew from 3 to18. He attributes his longevity and success in officiating to knowledgeable clinicians and mentors who guided him over the years.
Prior to March 1956, there had been a variety of meeting of educators involved in sports and physical education. There had been ongoing discussion about the possible creation of a high school athletic association, and while there had been unofficial provincial championships in high school football, basketball and curling, there was no organization in place to coordinate such events.
In coordination with the first ASAA championship - boys basketball - in March 1956, a meeting was held during which the ASAA was created. The founders called for the need to ensure that school sports took place in a well organized and educational environment and in a spirit that promoted good sportsmanship.
The vision shown by those individuals half a century ago, has gone to have a positive impact on the lives of well over a million students who have taken part in competitive school sports of which more than 150,000 have participated in a provincial championship. Students who through their positive involvement in school sports went on to become everything from teachers to corporate CEO’s; students who went on to have children and in some cases grandchildren who have taken part in high school sports. Today their vision has grown from a single championship amongst a handful of schools to 30 championships held across 11 sports, and over 30,000 student athletes and 3000 volunteer coaches in 350 member schools.
It is with great pride that the association recognizes the Founders of the association by inducting them as a group into the inaugural year of the Alberta High School Sports Hall of Fame.
Victoria Composite Boys Basketball Team - 1955/56
Unbeknown to them, the players in the first ASAA provincial championship were pioneers for the Alberta Schools’ Athletic Association. They were one of the four teams that played in the very first championship of the ASAA and they carry the distinction of being the first winners of an ASAA provincial championship.
That first tournament in Calgary involved a roadtrip from Edmonton to meet up with teams from Calgary, Lethbridge and Raymond. All four coaches of these teams were amongst the founders of the ASAA. The championship game was held at Crescent heights High School - a facility that was still hosting ASAA championships over 40 years later.
The coach of the Victoria Composite High School Team would later go on to become a successful university professor and author in Sports Sociology - Don McIntosh was a true Canadian leader in his field. Don McIntosh had a significant impact on his athletes. The assistant coach Jack Allen would go on to a long and successful career of teaching and coaching school sports and he credits his involvement school sports as a major highlight in his life.
At the first championship in Calgary the Victoria Composite High School Redmen reigned supreme and brought home the gold.