Silver Spring, MD - The International Whitewater Hall of Fame Board of Governors has announced the names of the Class of 2007 of the International Whitewater Hall of Fame (IWHOF) honorees. This newest class of whitewater legends includes a manufacturer, coach, and an artist/illustrator whose diversity represents significant accomplishment and contribution to both the sport and business of whitewater:
(deceased), of Stanley, Idaho is honored in the Explorer category not only for
his first descents of Turnback Canyon on the Alsek (British Columbia) in 1971
and Devils Canyon on the Susitna (Alaska) in 1972, but for his impact on
whitewater sport. His article in Sports
Illustrated in 1972 chronicling his solo descent of Turnback Canyon propelled
him to almost a cult hero overnight making him a legend. Seen by millions of viewers on ABC's
American Sportsman in the 1970's, Walt became the face of kayaking epitomizing
big water river running.
Toni Prijon, Sr. of
Rosenheim, Germany is honored in the Pioneer category for his life-long and
on-going influence in the paddlesports industry. Toni's touch as a designer has impacted more than 45 years of the
world of whitewater as few others have.
Although much of his focus through his company Prijon Kayaks has been on
slalom and wildwater competition, his pioneering work in design has influence
the sport broadly, popularizing plastic kayaks for every aspect of
Paddlesports: creek boating, playboating, recreational whitewater, and sea
Bill Endicott of
Bethesda, Maryland and William Nealy (deceased) of Hillsboro, North Carolina
are honored in the Advocate category for their life-long contributions. Endicott, a coach and writer, influenced whitewater
slalom in the U.S. and internationally for thirty years. Over his illustrious career, he coached
athletes who won 57 medals in World Championship, World Cup, and Olympic
competitions, 27 of them gold. Among
these athletes include the C-1 athletes of the 1980's who dominated world
competition, including Champions Jon Lugbill and Davey Hearn, both inducted
into IWHOF in 2005. His books have
provided invaluable insight into the world of championship slalom competition.
and often heralded as "Whitewater's Poet Laureate," Nealy was one of the best
known ambassadors of the sport. His art
captured the essence of whitewater paddling and whitewater paddlers. William began drawing river maps of the more
popular rivers in the southeast U.S using his now hallmark cartoonist
style. He is perhaps best known
internationally for his groundbreaking book, Kayak: A manual of Technique
(translated into five languages). It
combined expert paddling instruction along with artful caricatures and parodies
of the whitewater enthusiasts themselves.
Athletes Richard Fox
of Penrith, Australia and Cathy Hearn of Charlotte, North Carolina are honored
in the Champion category. Fox is the
most decorated slalom kayaker in the history of the sport having won ten World
Championship gold medals, including five individual titles. He was the innovator of smooth slalom
techniques emulated by many, and was the first to use a double torque kayak
paddle at the '89 World Championships.
After retiring from competition, Richard moved from Great Britain to
Australia to be the Head Coach for the Australian ‘00 Olympic team and played
an active role in the ICF campaign to include slalom in the '00 Olympics. He is currently responsible for the
Australian Slalom and Flatwater programs building toward the '08 Olympics.
Hearn began her
two-decade-long winning career in international competition with an
unprecedented three gold medals ('79 World Championship) in slalom, slalom
team, and wildwater team events. She
has always been extremely competitive in all types of whitewater including C-1
(her first whitewater boating experience) and C-2, and in wildwater in addition
to slalom. Cathy has shared her
knowledge during most of her career providing affordable and volunteer coaching
nationally and internationally. She is
the current U.S. National Coach, primarily working with the C-1 and C-2
national team athletes.
concludes a nomination process that began in February and elections by an
electorate consisting of more than fifty nationally and
internationally-recognized whitewater paddlers of the whitewater
community. Formal induction of the
newest class into the Hall of Fame will take place next year along with the
2008 Class of Inductees.
presentations of the 2007 Inductee DVD will take place at the 5th Annual
Whitewater Symposium (October 19-22) at ASCI in McHenry, Maryland. A screening will be held October 26th at the
annual Guest Appreciation Festival at the Nantahala Outdoor Center in Bryson
City, NC. Additional screening venue
opportunities are being explored in an effort to share the accomplishments of
these greats with both the paddling community and larger public.
Whitewater Hall of Fame recognizes and honors individuals who have made
significant accomplishments in and contributions to whitewater related
For more information
Whitewater Legends Honored by the International Whitewater Hall of FameFriday, 19 October 2007
The International Whitewater Hall of Fame Board of Governors has announced the names of the Class of 2007 of the International Whitewater Hall of Fame (IWHOF) honorees.
David Johnston has been introducing people to the sport of sea kayaking for the past 15 years. He is a senior instructor trainer with Paddle Canada and teaches for several paddling schools in Ontario, Canada. Full Bio.