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AAU Strength Sports Announces Weightlifters, Powerlifters, and Strongman Champion among 2015 Hall of Fame Inductees

AAU Strength Sports Announces Weightlifters, Powerlifters, and Strongman Champion among 2015 Hall of Fame Inductees

(June 30, 2015) - Amateur Athletic Union Strength Sports today announced that 10 legacy athletes representing Olympic weightlifting, powerlifting and strongman will be inducted into the AAU Strength Sports Hall of Fame, alongside six Hall of Fame selectees from 2014 and 2015.  

Athletes selected for admittance into the Hall of Fame will be honored during a ceremony Saturday night, September 26, 2015, in Las Vegas.  The ceremony will be held during the combined 2015 AAU World Weightlifting Championships, 2015 AAU Single-Lift and 3-Lift World Powerlifting Championships, and the 2015 AAU World Indoor Feats of Strength Championships. 

During the induction ceremony, AAU will also announce the 2015 AAU Brother Bennett Award -- AAU Strength Sport’s highest award for service -- and the 2015 AAU Strength Sports Athlete of the Year Award.      

“We feel privileged to be able to honor the very best strength athletes of the past at this year’s Hall of Fame ceremony,” said Martin Drake, AAU Strength Sports Chairman.  “The legacy honorees will join this year’s selectees, and we are going to have an amazing event against the backdrop of three world championships being held simultaneously in the same venue.”

Selectees for the 2015 class of the AAU Strength Sports Hall of Fame are:

Legacy Olympic Weightlifting  honorees (pre 1980)

1.  Michael Cohen  -- Multi-time Team USA and Olympic Team member in international competition, multi-time USA national and masters weightlifting champion.  Founder, Team Savannah Weightlifting, junior world team coaching staff.  1998 & 1999 USA Olympic Weightlifting Coach of the Year, multi-time women’s Olympic coach, and USA Weightlifting Hall of Fame.

2.  Howard Cohen –  Current USA Weightlifting masters President/Chairman, AAU weightlifter and record holder 1950's-1980, multi-time national and world masters Champion, USA Weightlifting Hall of Fame. 

3.  Jim McCarty - AAU Weightlifter 1976-1980, AAU Sr. national champion in powerlifting and weightlifting in the same year, with a 390 clean and jerk at 165 pounds.  Current AAU Weightlifting masters record holder, Superman of the Century (combined weightlifting and powerlifting) record-holder.

4.  Jason Farrow - AAU Weightlifting 1971-80, AAU Weightlifting 2013-present.  AAU champion super total weightlifting and powerlifting).  Multi-time USA Weightlifting and IWF masters national and world champion, USAW masters record holder, and AAU record holder.

5.  Don Walker - AAU  weightlifting 1968-1980, AAU Powerlifting 1968-80, AAU Weightlifting American record holder.  Multi-time USA Weightlifting national and IWF world champion, two-time Maccabi team member (gold), AAU Weightlifting 2013-present, AAU Powerlifting 2013-present.  

6.  Tommy Kono – Two-time Olympic gold medalist, and silver medalist.  The only Olympic weightlifter to set world records in four different weight classes. Six-time world weightlifting champion, three-time Pan American Games champion,  head coach of the 1976 U.S. Olympic weightlifting team, 1954 Mr. World (bodybuilding), International Weightlifting Federation Hall of Fame. 

 7.  Fred Lowe – 1968, 1972 & 1976 Olympic Weightlifting team member, eight-time Senior National Champion, and multi-time USA Weightlifting masters national champion and IWF masters world champion.

Legacy Powerlifting  honorees (pre 1980)

1.  Bill Ennis - AAU Powerlifting 1970-1980, AAU Sr. National Champion, AAU American Record holder, AAU Powerlifting 1994-present, AAU International Referee.  

2.  Vince Anello - AAU PL 1966-1980,  then USPF; eight-time Sr. National AAU and USPF Champion; five-time IPF World Champion.   First man under 200 lbs. to deadlift over 800 lbs. (4x bodyweight). Selected to York Barbell Hall of Fame. 

Legacy Strongman  honoree

1.  Odd Haugen  – Originally from Tingvoll, Norway.  Junior and senior Mr. Norway in bodybuilding.  AAU and USPF National Powerlifting Champion.   1999 AFSA Strongest Man in America, USA Strong Man Champion, and 2000, 2001 and 2003 Hawaii Strongest Man winner.  Introduced MAS Wrestling in America and to AAU.   

2014 - 2015 Strength Sports Hall of Fame  honorees

1.  Michael Capla – Powerlifting team leader from Slovakia. Former IPF Slovakia country chairman, and former International Paralympic Powerlifting Committee Slovakia chairman.  Led Slovakian teams to AAU World Powerlifting Championships 19 times, multi-time AAU World Champion.         

2.  Karen and Henry Fultz – Husband and wife team with 20 years of service to AAU Powerlifting.  Both are multi-time AAU World Champions, and world record holders.  Henry is an International Official, and Karen has served as the meet administration at multiple world championship events.  Both are also AAU FOS world champions. 

3.  Bill Weinstock – AAU Powerlifter 1994-present, multi-time AAU Masters World Powerlifting champion.  AAU Weightlifting North American champion, AAU FOS world champion.  International powerlifting judge.  Founder/Chairman/meet director of AAU Feats of Strength.  

4.  Robert Herbst  – AAU Weightlifting 1975-1980. AAU Powerlifting 1996-present.  30-time AAU national champion, 16-time AAU world champion.  Seven American and 37 world records.  The nationally-known referee and powerlifting announcer.  Semi-finalist for the 2013 AAU Sullivan Award given to America’s top amateur athlete.    

 5.  Joanne Shear -- AAU Powerlifting 1996-2004.  International referee.   Co-hosted numerous AAU meets with Larry Larsen.        

The AAU has a long-standing history of sanctioning the strength sports, including early Olympic weightlifting and bodybuilding (the 1930s), and the first powerlifting competitions ever held (1960s).  The AAU Strength Sports Executive Committee voted in 2012 to establish an AAU Powerlifting Hall of Fame to recognize the men and women who influenced the sport of powerlifting, and in 2015, that Hall of Fame was expanded to include honorees from all strength sports, including legacy AAU Olympic weightlifters and powerlifters, and early strongman/strongwoman competitors. 
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