Director of athletic media relations at SLU named to hall of fame
Tuesday, March 19, 2013 - 1:04 pm

Wally Johnson, the St. Lawrence University director of athletic media relations, has been chosen for induction into the College Sports Information Directors of America Hall of Fame class of 2013.

Inductions will take place June 13 in Orlando, Fl. during the 56th annual national convention.

"All of us in the athletic department are thrilled for Wally, as we all know how hard he has worked over his 38-year tenure at St. Lawrence," said University Director of Athletics Margie Strait. "As time has passed, Wally was able to adapt to the challenges of sports information and new modalities for sharing information about deserving student-athletes at St. Lawrence University."

Johnson has put together a storied career in the sports information business, becoming the first in the college division to win all three of the profession's major awards, including CoSIDA's Warren Berg Award (2001), ECAC's Irving T. Marsh Award (1995) and the Pete Nevins Award (2012). Johnson was also the 1971 Vermont Sportswriter of the Year.

His dedication to his work has also been exhibited through service, as he served for 25 years on the ECAC-SIDA board and was a long-serving chairman of the CoSIDA Workshop Exhibits Committee. Wally is also a founding member of St. Lawrence University's Athletic Hall of Fame and continues to provide coverage for 12 Saints teams.

A native of St. Albans, Vt. and a 1971 graduate of the University of Vermont, he was the assistant sports editor of The Burlington Free Press prior to joining the staff at St. Lawrence.

He was also a sportswriter and columnist for The Vermont Sunday News and St. Albans Messenger and worked as a commentator on University of Vermont basketball broadcasts. He currently does the color commentary on Saint hockey games on the radio in addition to providing home and away articles for various North Country newspapers.

The CoSIDA Hall of Fame will induct six new members, including Johnson, who have made outstanding contributions to the field of college athletic communications. The remaining five include:

• Justin Doherty, CoSIDA past president and Associate Athletic Director for External Relations at the University of Wisconsin

• Bernadette "Bernie" Cafarelli, Assistant Athletic Director for Media Relations at University of Notre Dame

• Jim McGrath, Associate Athletic Director at Butler University

• Jim Seavey, Director of Sports Information and Compliance at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy

• Fred Stabley, Jr., who retired as Central Michigan University Director of Sports Information in 2005