Colorado Springs, Colo. (July 25, 2018) – The Ultimate Hall of Fame and USA Ultimate,  the national governing body for the sport of ultimate in the United States, are excited to welcome twelve new Hall of Famers in the Class of 2018.

The 2018 Class includes open division inductees Bob DeManGreg HusakAllan “Al Bob” NicholsBrian “Biscuit” Morris, along with open Look Back Inductees Paul Brenner and Ian Hue (formerly Hutchinson). Women’s division inductees include Dominique FontenetteAngela Lin and Tina McDowell, along with women’s Look Back Inductees Michele Pezzoli and Joanie Merrill. The contributor inductee is Michael Baccarini.

The 2018 inductees were selected by the current Ultimate Hall of Fame voting members from a final slate of 20 player candidates announced in May, with the additional consideration of two contributor candidates and five Look Back candidates (three open players from the 1968-1978 and 1979-1988 periods and two women’s players from the 1979-1988 period) included on the final ballots. The candidates included in the Call to the Community were chosen by the Hall of Fame Vetting Subcommittee from an accomplished pool of athletes and contributors through a review of peer voting results and written applications solicited by the committee. 

The Hall of Fame Committee continues to incorporate improvements into the process to enable a “catch-up period” in advance of the next formal Hall of Fame Induction ceremony to be held in October 2018 as part of the celebration of the 50th anniversary of ultimate. To be inducted into the Ultimate Hall of Fame, potential candidates must complete three steps. The first stage involves “peer voting,” where potential candidates are reviewed and ranked by a group of players or contributors from their own playing era. During the current catch-up phase, the second stage involves winnowing the field down to a slate of up to 20 player candidates through a review of the peer voting results and written applications solicited by the six-person Vetting Subcommittee. The slate of 20 is announced in the Call to the Community which requests input from the ultimate community at-large. The final stage involves two rounds of voting for 10 player candidates and, this year, two contributor candidates, by the full voting committee, comprised of the Vetting Subcommittee and the player and contributor members of the Ultimate Hall of Fame. For 2018, gender-based voting was initiated for player candidates with women Hall of Fame members voting on women player candidates and open members voting on open player candidates. All Hall of Fame members cast votes for the contributor candidates. Also instituted for 2018 was a Look Back process to recognize candidates who may have been overlooked in prior years. Inductees in all categories must receive an affirmative vote by at least two-thirds of the voters to be selected.

“I am proud of the efforts of the ultimate community and Hall of Fame members as we continue to improve the selection process which yielded this impressive group of new Hall of Fame members,” said Hall of Fame Committee Chair Suzanne Fields. “We had an excellent class of nominees this year, all worthy of consideration. We are so pleased to welcome these 12 new members into the Ultimate Hall of Fame.”

The Class of 2018 is the 15th class inducted into the Ultimate Hall of Fame, which was established in 2004 to honor the men and women whose accomplishments as athletes and contributors merit acknowledgement by their peers. The 2018 class will be officially inducted into the Ultimate Hall of Fame during a ceremony at the 2018 National Championships in San Diego, where the Ultimate Foundation and the community at large will celebrate the 50th anniversary of our sport. 

“We are excited to welcome the newest members of the Ultimate Hall of Fame,” said Dr. Tom Crawford, USA Ultimate Chief Executive Officer. “We are inspired by the phenomenal accomplishments and collective contributions of the inductees and are proud to recognize these 12 new members of the Hall of Fame. We look forward to honoring them all at the Hall of Fame Dinner and Awards Ceremony, one of the events at the 50th Anniversary Reunion and Celebration during the National Championships in San Diego later this year.”

Class of 2018

The Vetting Sub-Committee included:

  • Suzanne Fields (Chair, Hall of Fame Committee) – Hall of Fame Inaugural Class of 2004
  • David Barkan (Open Peer Co-Lead) – Hall of Fame Class of 2010
  • Gloria Lust-Phillips (Women’s Division Chair) – Hall of Fame Class of 2008
  • Robert “Nob” Rauch (Contributor Peer Chair) – Hall of Fame Class of 2006
  • Keay Nakae (Open Peer Co-Lead/Ad-hoc subcommittee member) – Hall of Fame Class of 2012
  • Henry Thorne (USA Ultimate Board Liaison)

This year’s selection process also received significant support from:

  • Pam Kraus – Hall of Fame Class of 2017
  • Cliff Marhoefer – Hall of Fame Class of 2011
  • Chris Van Holmes – Hall of Fame Class of 2013