WHITE PLAINS, NY -- County Executive Robert P. Astorino announced that six county residents who have gained national prominence and contributed to sports in Westchester will be inducted into the 2015 Westchester Sports Hall of Fame during a ceremony to be held on Thursday, October 22 at the Westchester County Center in White Plains.
“I congratulate our newest group of impressive inductees – several who were multi-sport athletes – for the hard work and countless hours they dedicated to advance their sports careers,” Astorino said. “We are thrilled that this year’s ceremony is being hosted for the first time at the County Center, where the Hall of Fame is the focal point of the building’s newly refurbished atrium.”
The induction event is open to the public and begins at 5:30 p.m. with a cocktail reception, dinner and ceremony to begin at 6:30 p.m. Price is $80 per person and reservations are required. For more information, call (914) 231-4564.
The six inductees were chosen from a pool of 70 nominees. In order to be nominated, an individual must be of good character and have gained prominence in either professional or amateur sports as a player, coach, manager, official, owner, writer or broadcaster.
Hall of Fame plaques are on permanent display in the Sports Hall of Fame gallery at the Westchester County Center in White Plains.
Attendees will be welcome to visit the Hall of Fame and view its exhibits during the evening.
Inductees for this year’s Hall of Fame are:
· Michael Chiapparelli, who has coached Mamaroneck High School baseball for 31 seasons and has been head coach for ice hockey and JV football for this time well. He served as assistant athletic director from 2001to 2006. Several of Chiappareilli’s teams have won championships, including baseball (Class AA), ice hockey and JV ice hockey. He has also received the “League Coach of the Year” 16 times for baseball and five times for ice hockey. Chiapparelli is the first coach at Mamaroneck High School to ever have over 1,000 wins.
· Considered one of the best swimmers in the county by Westchester’s swimming community, Lou Dearstyne was a multiple conference and Westchester County champion and was honored in 1984 by the Larchmont Shore Club as the best opposition competitor. He was undefeated in his Iona Prep dual meet competition for his last three seasons. Dearstyne was a six-time All-County, all-section and freestyle champion in 1985 and 1986 (records in each); CHSAA League MVP in 1986 and the National Catholic High School Champion and record setter in those events in 1986. He also won the Con Edison Scholastic Sports Award in 1986. At Villanova University he became the first swimmer to win the same event at the Big East Championship in all four of his competition years. This year, Dearstyne was honored with induction into the Villanova University Sports Hall of Fame.
· As a member of the White Plains football team, Thomas DePaso was All-County MVP and All-State during both his junior and senior years. He went on to Penn State where he was a three-year starter as linebacker and was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals, where he played for two years until he was injured. DePaso left the game to pursue Law School at Catholic University. Today he serves as general legal counsel for the NBLPA and is an adjunct professor at Georgetown University.
· A standout athlete in football and basketball in high school and college, Gregory C. Draddy was captain of both sports teams at Rye High School, as well as two-time Gannett All County. In football, he was a Con Ed Athlete of the Week in 1988, with a career record of 18-2, and made the Gannett Writers Honor Roll three times. In basketball, Draddy was named to the All-Tournament team and played on the first Rye team to go to the state finals. He also played in the Empire State Games representing Hudson Valley. At College of the Holy Cross, Draddy was a three-year starter playing end and linebacker, and won the Patriot League in his junior year. During his senior year, he was designated a Player of the Week by the Boston Globe and voted to the All-Patriot League Team and All East Team. Draddy is currently president of the Westchester Chapter of the National College Football Hall of Fame.
· An outstanding athlete and coach, Mary Henwood attended Eastchester High School from 1978 to 1982 and Hofstra University from 1982 to1986. At Eastchester, she was a three-sport athlete in volleyball/basketball/softball, a three-sport captain in 1981-82 and three-sport all-league and all-section in both junior and senior year. Henwood was awarded Most Outstanding Athlete of the Year and recognized as Eastchester’s first 1,000+ point scorer in 1982. At Hofstra, she was a four-year varsity starter, team captain, 1,000+ point scorer, and East Coast Conference Player of the Week, all in basketball/lacrosse. Henwood has coached varsity girls’ basketball and lacrosse at Rye High School and has brought many of her teams to the New York State Championships.
· A native of Pleasantville, Diane Swertfager graduated from Pleasantville High School in 1979 where she was a multi-sport star excelling in volleyball, basketball and softball. As a volleyball player, she was an all-county performer for the Panthers. Swertfager went on to attend Springfield College, graduating in 1983 after serving as a four- year member of the volleyball team, as well as being appointed team captain her senior year. She is currently a Section One volleyball coach and sports coordinator at Hendrick Hudson High School. Since 1986, Swertfager has amassed over 500 career wins, making her only the third Section One coach to achieve that milestone.