Hall of Fame
Established in 2006

The hall of Fame was created to recognize former soccer officials in the State of Massachusetts who have distinguished themselves in the field of soccer officiating by virtue of their performance as an official or by meritorious efforts on behalf of soccer officiating.
The rationale for a Soccer Official’s Hall of Fame:

  • To recognize interscholastic soccer officials in the State of Massachusetts who have distinguished themselves in the field of soccer officiating by virtue of their performance as an official or by meritorious effort on behalf of soccer officiating
  • To maintain relationships with outstanding officials
  • To promote and maintain good community relations
  • To foster an awareness of standards of excellence for which current officials can strive for
  • To aid in attracting students and adults to the profession of soccer officiating to provide positive media coverage for the Massachusetts Interscholastic Soccer Officials Association (MISOA)

Nominations to the Hall of Fame derive from any one of the seven local boards that make up MISOA. Nomination forms are obtained from any local board can be filled out and submitted to be considered. Nominations are then screened and selected for induction. Inductions are usually done on the local board level in a way to honor those selected, like presenting them at their annual banquet.
Members inducted are listed with a brief resume. They are listed under each board which will be in alphabetical order starting with Berkshire County.

BCSOA- Berkshire County

Jack Domurat (Inducted in 2006)

Jack was a 32 year member of the BCSOA. He held many position on the board including President; was an Observer and Evaluator; was an Interpreter and Clinician for 12 years. Jack was a 12 year member of the NISOA Interscholastic (High School) Division and participated in three NISOA high school national camps. He received the National High School Referee of the year Award in 2000.worked numerous local and tournament games, too many to mention.
As member of the BCSOA he was also9 involved with the MIAA for over 8 years. He represented all soccer referees, being the representative on the Soccer Rules Committee. Jack worked very hard to get all the interpreters in the stage together so that all boards would interpret the rules alike. He acted as the liaison to the MIAA and to the interpreters and worked as the state interpreter.
One of Jack’s biggest accomplishments was the assistance in the formation of this group—MISOA. Jack worked with Rich Valle (EMSOA) _ and many others to organize this group and get things going. He is a charter member of MISOA as the Berkshire County representative. He was the first “official” State Interpreter.
Jack was educated at Matignon- Cambridge MA; Louisiana Tech; U-Mass-Amherst and North Adam State Colleges. He retired after 32 years as a Health and P.E teacher with the Central Berkshire Regional School system. He was a Berkshire County softball umpire for 15 years; a member of IAABO board #25 for 32 years where he served as Sec/Treas. for 11 of those years. He was also President of the MA Sate Basketball Assoc. in 2000.
Jack is married to his wife Cheryl and have two children, Jeanne and John. Jack has moved from the area and now resides in the Southwest.

Al Cece (Inducted in 2006)

Ala joined the Berkshire County board in 1973 and officiated for 33 years, retiring in 2006. He held the offices of Vice-President, President and Interpreter. He joined NISOA in 1975, retiring from there in 2000 after 25 years of service. While with NISOA he acquired the level of National Referee and was a Regional National Referee Clinician. He participated in many clinics throughout the county bringing back all the knowledge he gained and shared it with everyone. Al refereed in many National tournaments at all levels, Divisions 1, 2 & 3. Al officiated many High School regular and post season games. He became well known and respected for his consistent and fair applications of the rules and laws of the game.
Al graduated from Livingston High in New Jersey where he played football, soccer, basketball and baseball being captain in all four sports. He went onto Springfield College receiving in MS in 1965 and BS in 1970. He played football, basketball and baseball being the captain in the football and baseball. He became a teacher in P.E and Health for 36 years. He began his teaching career at Cathedral High in Springfield, then to Mt. Greylock and finally to Monument Mountain, where he spent 26 years. He coached High School football, basketball and baseball. He was an assistant baseball coach at Williams College and an assistant women’s basketball coach.

Al is married to Barbara and have three children: Laura, Jenna, and Derek.

Wray Gunn Sr. (Inducted in 2006)

Wray joined the BCSOA in 1957 and retired in 1991 after 34 years of service. He held the offices of: President – three times; Secretary/Treasurer for 20 years; assistant Interpreter and Clinician for years. He joined NISOA the same time Al Cece did in 1975. Wary and Al were the first officials from BCSOA to attend NISOA’s E-Town training camps. Wary was the first Black Soccer Official in Berkshire County and now has two sons who also officiate. He has worked numerous Berkshire County Berkshire County Championships, Western Mass Championships and State tournament games. As a member of NISOA he worked many games in MA, CT and NY states. Wray worked diligently to establish a strong set of By-laws for the Berkshire board to follow.
Wray also was a member of the Berkshire County Umpires Association for 40 years. He was that group’s President for 2 years, and Secretary for 5 years. He was also a member of IAABO Board #25 for 38 years; was President two times there. He worked the New England High school Basketball Tournament held in Boston for 3 years.
Wray was educated at Williams H.S in Stockbridge MA; received his B.S degree in chemistry at UMASS and certification in Spectroscopy from BU. He retired from Pfizer Inc. in Canaan, CT in 1992 as a Quality Control Manager, after working there for 40 years.
Wray is married to his second wife Cora. His first wife passed away 1992, where they had been married for 40 years and have four children: Wray Jr. who officiates baseball, basketball and other sports, Wayne who officiates soccer, M.Peter and Wendy (Coleman).

CCSOA—Cape Cod

Lou Drake (Inducted in 2006)

Lou Drake (deceased) was instrumental in helping form the Cape Cod S.O.A. He served as President, Secretary, Treasurer, Interpreter, and Assignment Commissioner. It was partially through Lou’s efforts that soccer started and in thriving on Cape Cod. He developed the Junior High program on the Cape.
Lou began officiating in 1957 and retired in 1985 from Mass and then in 1987 from Florida where he also officiated. He had officiated well over 1,000 games including many state tournament games during his 28 years of service.
Lou was a math teacher at Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School District from 1957-1985. He coached soccer, basketball and baseball. He always believed that members of sports teams were better students. He loved to ski and play golf. He was an ad vide Yankee fan in the hot bed of Cape Cod Red Sox fans.
Lou was married to Barbara (now both decreased) and had two children: Louis Jr. and Helen Gabriel.

Dick Maxwell (Inducted in 2006)

Richard “Dick” Maxwell is a legend on Cape Cod. He served as president, Secretary and Treasurer of the CCSOA over the years. He is still a very active member of the board and is still the Treasurer.
Dick began officiating in the US Navy (unofficially) from 43-45 and from 50-51, and then officially full time in 1960. He has officiated in Mass and presently still officiates in both Mass and Florida. He is still very active official. In his 46 years he has don’t over 1,300 games and many tournament games.
Lou retired from teaching after 35 years. He then continued in education as a substitute teacher and still does this in the Cape Cod area. He served as President of the Mass Teachers Assoc. He umpires softball games in the spring. He enjoyed seeing the growth of youth soccer, the number of scholarships that are offered and also the rapid growth of girls’ sports especially in soccer. He would like to see more young people get involved in officiating. Sounds like a project for all of us! He greets each day and person with a smile.
Dick is married to jean and has four children: Rick, Jane Shields, Mary-Kaye Page and Tara.

Don Fleet (Inducted in 2007)

Don Fleet began his association with soccer when as a 7th grader joining the Soccer team of Sandwich High School in 1957. That was the first year of an interscholastic soccer in the Sandwich Public Schools. He played for 6 years competing in the early years of a Cape Cod League. His position was referred to back then as a fullback. He made the Cape All Stars team in 1960 and 61.
After graduating from college he moved back to the Cape Cod area in 1968. He joined the newly formed Cape Cod Soccer Officials Association. For over 40 years he refereed high school soccer games. He was a member of the National Intercollegiate Soccer. He was the rule interpreter for the CCSOA for over 15 years. During that time he was the assignor for the Cape and the Island league, the Southeast Conference and many South Shore Leagues. He presently is an active working official.

Carl Zopatti (Inducted in 2008)

Carl began officiating soccer and basketball the same year_1978. He is currently still an active official, in many different ways. Keith Forker says this of Carl: “Carl was refereeing already when I came in as a rookie. Twenty-five years later I’m very much into it and Carl is just the same. To be in his shape, his knowledge, hi9s dedication to the sport, dedication to the board and overall efforts to the betterment of new younger officials is what we all should aspire to. He has the respect of everyone everywhere.”
Carl has been president of the CCSOA and is currently the MISOA representative for CCSOA. He has officiated over 1,200 games including more than 10 tournament games. Carl has a great interest in helping them to understand the great profession of officials in getting involved. He enjoys working with new officials and helping them to understand the great profession of officiating. He teaches at every opportunity he can. He treats every game he does as if it is a Varsity game and it does participate the same. Having been a past coach and Athletic director he looks at the game from all three points of view and when possible uses this to help benefit the game of soccer. Carl tries to work with coaches, player and ADs to have a better relationship with the Officials.
Carl helped start a web site for the CCSOA, a work in progress. He also began a Wellness Committee that informs members of the boards of individuals that need the boards support during the year (example: illness or death of a family member.) Two points that have always made Carl free good as an official is: that coaches, players and fans hardly know you were there doing the game and when the losing oath comes up to you after the game and says “Nice Game”.
Carl always asks coaches, players and fans to treat him and his fellow officials as they would like to be treated. “Don’t embarrass me, yourself, your players, your school, fans and your community by your actions.” Carl always looked for good sportsmanship and acknowledges it often. Carl feels that officiating has been a great experience and feels he is a better person as a result of it.
Carl retired from the Falmouth and Dennis-Yarmouth School Districts after 39 years of service. He was a Physical Education teacher. Acting Assistant Principal, Athletic Director, and Coach and most importantly an Official. Carl is married to Linda.

CMSOA—Central Massachusetts

Fran Giuliano (Inducted in 2006)

Fran Giuliano is in his 40th year of officiating high school soccer. He is a charter member and the first President of CMSOA. He has officiated over 2,000 high school games including about 150 district tournament games and 18 State Finals. Fran has been the Central Mass Rules Interpreter for the past 22 years. He has attended many regional and national Federations for several years. He is currently the CMSOA representative to MISOA and is one of the Assigning Commissioners in Central Mass.
In 1986 Fran established a scholarship in memory of his father, which helps a Central Mass boys and girls soccer player continue their education in college. Fran also supervised a mentor program that provided assistance from experienced officials to probationary officials.
Fran is retired Physical Education teacher from the Worcester Public Schools where he worked for 36 years. He was a former official in the sports of: basketball, softball, girl’s lacrosse and of course soccer. He coached football and basketball. Fran remains an active official and assigns games for central Mass schools.
Fran is married to Beverly for over 46 years and they have three children and seven grandchildren in which he enjoys very much.

Tim Kelly (Inducted in 2006)

Tim Kelly (deceased) officiated high school cocker in central Mass for 32 years, serving as Secretary/ Treasurer for 22 years until his death in June of 2004. Tim officiated over 1,500 high school games along with over 50 tournament games which . Tim was the Director Tournament Officials for 16 years as well as coordinating the Scholarship and sportsmanship awards that are named in his memory.
His career as a guidance counselor spanned over forty years. Tim entered the religious community of the Holy Cross Brothers working with disadvantaged you for six years. Upon leaving the Holy Cross brothers, he entered public life and pursued his career as a guidance counselor for the Worcester Public Schools. Continuing his passion for helping troubled youths he established the Orbit Program for truant and potential dropouts.
Tim Kelly’s legacy extends well beyond his soccer officiating career. As a devout Christian, he provided a positive influence for so many young lives. His is survived by his wife over 42 years, Carole, his two children and a grandson.

John Desimone (Inducted in 2007)

John has been an active member of the Central Mass board of soccer officials since 1970. He has worked over 2,000 interscholastic high school contests. John has worked countless state tournament games, as well as many District and State Finals. He was chosen as “High School Official of the Year” by the Central Mass Coaches Association for excellence in officiating on four different occasions – 1980, 1991, 1994 and 1997. He has also served the CMSOA board with dedication and excellence holding the offices of: President, Vice-President and being and working on and with the mentoring program.

Bob Catalini (Inducted in 2007)

Bob has been an active member of the CMSOA since joining in 1985. Bob was chosen five times for the honor of “High School Official Year” given by the Central mass coaches Association- 1988, 1989, 1990, 1993 and 2005. Bob was also selected as the national Federation of High Schools Soccer Official of the Year for the State of Massachusetts in 2000. Bob has many high school games over the years and worked many District and State Final championship games. Bob served the CMSOA in many capacities including President and is currently the representative for the board to MISOA. He is currently and assignor for Central Mass covering many different schools.
Bob was a High School Athletic Director recently retiring from the position. He was on MIAA State Soccer Committee working on rules and improvements in the scholastic game. As the Athletic Director he was in charge of soccer for both the Midland Wachusett League and South Coast Conference.

CVSOA—Connecticut Valley

Kenneth Berestka (Inducted in 2007)

Ken has been a member of the CVSOA since joining the association back in 1968. He has officiated approximately 1,300 games, including more than 1,000 varsity matches. He has worked approximately 100 tournament games. Ken has refereed at least 35 Western Mass Semi-finals games and 20 Sectional Championship games. He was always assigned the “big games” in the Conn. Valley area because of his knowledge and fair application of the rules.
Ken taught at Granby High School for fifteen years, where he was the JV soccer coach from 1970 until 1976 where he then took over the Varsity program until 1981. Presently, Ken owns and operates his own catering business.

Raymond Brown (Inducted in 2007)

Ray joined the CVSOA in 1968 and retired in 2005. He served as the Secretary/Treasurer of the board since 1998. During his officiated hundreds of matches and performed many notable assignments. Presently he is an observer of referees for the CVSOA, which suggests the high regard he enjoyed among his CVSOA colleagues. In addition, Ray coached for many years at the Williston Northampton School, where he was a faculty member. His coaching successes earned him a place in the NEPSSA Hall of Fame. Finally, he has been recognized by the CVSOA for outstanding contributions to soccer in Hampshire and Franklin Counties. Ray resides in Hadley MA with his family.

Peter J. Kotch (Inducted in 2008)

In 1993 Peter joined the CVSOA and has been a very active member since. He has officiated several hundred varsity matches which included many Sectional and State tournament games. During his career, Peter refereed fifteen Western Mass Semi-final games, five Western Mass Championship games, three MIAA State final games. Peter has been the assigning Commissioner of the CVSOA for outstanding contributions to soccer in Hampshire and Franklin counties. Peter resides in Shelburne Falls with his family.

EMSOA—Eastern Massachusetts

George Cataldo (Inducted in 2007)

George started officiating in 1964 joining the EMSOA. He chose to be as active as possible from the get go and has been a long term Interscholastic and Intercollegiate official. Over his 21 plus years of service he has worked hundreds of games at the varsity level and over 25 tournament games or the MIAA. He has also worked many college games along the way. He served as the MIAA Tournament Assignor for many years. He has served on the Executive Board of EMSOA for over 40 years in several different capacities such as President, Vice-President, Secretary/Treasurer, Judiciary Committee and Assessor. Notably, George served as the “second” Secretary/Treasurer of EMSOA for over a dozen years succeeding Paul Beaver, member of the founding group of individuals in 1958. George now serves as an Assessor of new officials, a position he takes great pride in performing. George’s expertise in his ability to convey the principles of sound mechanics and philosophy of officiating to the new members. He is always ready and able to assist in any capacity called upon. It is often been said “George can make a call based on rules not yet established.” He is a legend when it comes to the unusual. George retired from officiating in 1985.
George resides in South Weymouth. E is a retired Claims Administrator (Law Firm) SR. Claims Adjuster. He was married to his wife Delores (deceased) and has five children: Richard, Noreen, Gary, Denise and David. He also officiated Basketball, Softball, and Lacrosse.
George’s longevity and dedication to the EMSOA has earned him the privilege of being named to the MISOA hall of Fame.

Francesco Scarsella (Inducted in 2007)

Frank began his officiating career in 1967 and is still an active referee. He is affiliated with the following boards: EMSOA, NEISOA, NISOA, USSF and MISOA. Over the 40 plus years he has been officiating, Frank has done approximately 5,000 games which include High School, College and USSF games at all levels. He has worked over 100 tournament games in all areas he is associated with. In 1982 he was named “Official of the Year” which is chosen by the Eastern Mass Soccer Coaches Association. In 1982 he was President of the EMSOA board. Other offices he has held are: Interpreter and Executive Board Member.
Bill Flannery says this “I have known Frank Scarsella for over 25 years as a soccer referee, instructor and interpreter. Over those 25 years I have followed his career. He is a great referee, from youth tournaments (annual Needham Memorial Day Tourney) up to and including college games, he treats them all the same. As an instructor over many years, he has talked at all the area clinics, bringing referees up to date on rule changes and procedures that come about. He has served the EMSOA board in many capacities and continues to do so to this date. The rationale for the soccer officials’ Hall of Fame nomination is exemplified in Frank Scarsella as someone who has dedicated years of service to improving the sport of soccer. As an official, interpreter, an official and board member of the EMSOA, he has always sought to improve official’s conduct, and the spread of soccer popularity in the area.”
Frank was an all star goalie for Arizona State, played in the Phoenix Soccer League, coached at Roslindale High School from 68-70 with a record of 35-3, became a life member of EMSOA in 1987, and received the William Flannery Award in 1996, a life member of USSF in 2003 and many other recognitions. Franks belief is:”Do it with excellence, humanity and spontaneity.” In 2005 he was inducted into the Mass Soccer Hall of Fame. His rare sense of humor and human touch has enriched the lives of many players, coaches, administrators and parents.
Frank resides in Needham MA and has three children: Elisa, Anthony and Dean. He retired from the Boston Public Schools as a Physical Education Instructor.

John Buckley (Inducted in 2008)

John began his officiating career by joining EMSOA in 1967. John has refereed over 1,300 games and so many District and State tournament games that it is hard to count. He joined NISOA in 1969 to referee at a higher level. He is still very active in High School game and the College game. He is associated and active in not only the EMSOA board but also the NEISOA and NISOA boards for his 42 plus years. He has held the positions of President, Vice-President, Interpreter, and Clinician on the EMSOA board. John presently assigns game officials for several leagues and is a member of the West Chapter of EMSOA. John has been unselfish to his contributions to the interscholastic soccer in Eastern Mass. He is a recruiter of new officials, a master presenter and dedicated to the advancement of the EMSOA.
John has been recognized over the years by receiving the Mass State “Referee of the Year” award in 1974, NEISOA “Referee of the Year” in 1979 and 1993, National Referee Of the year in 1994, National collegiate Athletic Assoc. Soccer Hall of Fame inductee in 2008.
John has worked at every level he has officiated taking the lead and helping other along the way. John always had a way about himself that made him stand above the rest. His dedication to the high school ranks (42 years) and the College ranks (40 years) makes him an outstanding candidate for the MISOA Hall of Fame.
John resides in Framingham with his wife Kathleen and they have three children: John, Colleen and David. He is a retired educator but still very active in the game.

Cal Perry (Inducted in 2009)

Cal got the bug and started playing soccer at Deerfield Academy. He played freshman soccer and three years of varsity soccer in college at Dartmouth. He was elected captain in 1956 and selected to the All-Ivy team that same year. Cal began his officiating career after watching his son play soccer in High School. He began in 1970 and officiated until his last appearance on the field in 2006. Over that span Cal has officiated well over 1,400 games and approximately 60 or more tournament games. He recalls doing one Division State Final at BU and one Division 2 Final with Frank Scarsella at Chelmsford involving North Reading.
Cal is associated with EMSOA, MISOA, MIAA, and USSF and formerly with NISOA. The EMSOA Executive Board endorses Cal for induction into the MISOA Hall of Fame because he has been contributing member of the board since 1983, first as a clinician, then as Chapter Interpreter, then a MISOA member, and presently the State Interpreter which also entails sitting on the MIAA Soccer Rules Committee and being the liaison for MISOA with the MIAA. Cal has never said “NO” to any request for assistance; he is an articulate representative of what is good about the game of Interscholastic Soccer. Cal is a life member of the EMSOA, has served as chairman of the Judiciary Committee and is presently a member of the EMSOA Executive Board. While Cal is not an active referee now, he continues to be active as an Instructor for both EMSOA and USSF, while attending to his duties as the State Interpreter.
Cal can also say that he has not only done a State Final in Soccer, but also in Lacrosse and Volleyball. Cal is a retired USAF (32 years) and private practice of Optometry (35 years) in Andover. He resides in Andover with his wife Mary Ann (Morgan) and they have three children: Leslie, Jeffrey and Gage.

Richard Valle (Inducted in 2010)

Richard “Dick” Valle began his career on the pitch in 1977 and after 31 years he retired from the field in 2008. Retire from the field but not the game and the profession of “soccer official”. He refereed over 1,100 High School games, 59 tournament games which included three state finals.
While on the EMSOA board Dick has been a member of the Executive Board of EMSOA, on the Judiciary Committee, Vice-President 98-99, president 00-01, Interpreter of the North Chapter, MISOA Representative for EMSOA.
Dick Valle is deeply rooted in the advancement of interscholastic soccer officiating that he, with the help of Jack Domurat in 2000 initiated the formation of MISOA. The idea was conceived and put into action, to unite the seven local soccer official’s boards across the State of Mass into one organization, one voice to be heard on the State level at the MIAA. It was to bring the Interpreters together so that consistent interpretation of the rules of the games would be followed, and look how we have grown and developed.
Dick lives in North Andover with his wife Beverly and they have two children Susan and David. Dick is now a retired educator that worked for 35 years in the Andover Public School system.

PVSOA—Pioneer Valley

Larry Briggs (Inducted in 2006)

Larry Briggs (deceased 12/20/70) graduated from the University of Mass in 1927 and soon after became the University’s first soccer coach, a position he held for 37 years. As a professor of physical education at UMass he also coached many other sports with great success. A founding member of the New England Intercollegiate Soccer League, he served as that organization’s secretary for 4 years, joined the NCSAA in its first year and was the President of that organization in 1947. He was also the moving force behind the formation of NISOA.
Besides being the coach at UMass, he helped organize the PVSOA in 1942. In 1945 he developed the Dual System of Officiating; 47-50 was the PVSOA Secretary/Treasurer; in 1953 he received the NSCAA Honor Award; 1955 coordinated the New England Region Clinics for coaches and Referees. In 1957 he helped form NEISOA; 59-60 coordinator of referee evaluation system; 60-64 revised the College Rule book format. In 1963 was considered the “Father of NISOA”. He established the first Referee Assignment Committee for Soccer Officials. In 1964 developed the first soccer officiating mechanics film. He received the NISOA Honor Awards in 1967; 2000 NISOA Hall of Fame inductee; 1968 NEISOA Life member; 1978 inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame. Larry is a charter member and founder of the PVSOA.
He also has a High School boys division in the PVIAC named in his honor. The PVSOA hands out and award in his honor (which Larry started, paid for and presented every year until the board took it over for him). This award is the most prestigious award the PVSOA hands out and it is given to a person who exemplifies the high standards and contributions to soccer over a long period of time. The list of past winners is amazing.
Larry loved the game of soccer and all sports as he spent his life promoting and improving both the sport and the profession which he represent both proudly. Larry lived in the Amherst area and was married and had children.

David Grieve (Inducted in 2006)

David Grieve (1926-1987) graduated in 1950 from Springfield College. He joined the PVSOA in 1952 where held the offices of: Vice-President 64-65; President 66-67; and Rules Interpreter for many years. He was also Vice-President and President of NEISOA; President elect of NISOA and the Honorary President of NISOA 77-78; Honor Awards Chair of NISOA; NISOA Convention Chair in 1975. He was Chairman of the Larry Briggs Award Committee and received the award in 1970. He was appointment by the ECAC as a regional supervisor of soccer officials in New England.
Dave was voted “Officials of the year” for the state of Mass in 1973. Dave became a Life/Honorary member both NEISO and the PVSOA. Dave was the PVIAC Commissioner and Western Mass Tournament assignor for many years and in which he took great pride in providing the best officials for these games. Dave was inducted into the NISOA Hall of Fame; has a PVIAC league named in his honor; has an award given to a male player in Division 3 Western Mass named in his honor.
Dave officiated too many games to count, back when the officials worked alone and for only $5.00 per game. He loved to officiate soccer. He officiated in the NCAA and NAIA Regional tournaments. He also officiated the first State Championship game for the High Schools in Mass. He ran numerous clinics and classes on the art of officiating and performed in the soccer mechanics films.
Dave retired from teaching at Stafford CT Public School system where at one time was also an Administrator in the same system. He coached soccer at Stafford High School before his career of refereeing. The Town of Monson where Dave lived and raised his family, named a park downtown in his memory. Dave was married to Yolanda “Yolie” and they had three children: Nancy, Cindy and Peter. He also had five grandsons.

John Kurty (Inducted in 2007)

President John F. Kennedy had a saying “One man can make a difference, and every man should try.” John Kurty is one of those men.
John Kurty helped build Ludlow High School soccer into what is today, both as a player and as a coach. He also initiated the drive for the first true State Soccer Tournament. As a High School and College coach (Westfield State), John won more than 300 games and never endured a losing season in his 22 years, which is remarkable, Kurty’s has lived for decades not because of his success on the field, but as a coach who had the gift of earning love and respect of his players.
Kurty grew up Ludlow graduated from Ludlow high as a three sport star in 1994. His blue-collar work ethic led him to storybook careers in soccer, basketball and in his best sport, baseball. Graduating from Penn State University, where he was a starting fullback on Penn State’s national championship teams in ‘49 & ’50, and starting in baseball where that earned him a tryout with the Cleveland Indians, Kurty went onto Amherst Jr. High School teaching for four years before finally returning to Ludlow High to teach Physical Education. He became the head coach in soccer, basketball and golf.
In his 11 seasons of coaching soccer at Ludlow, he reached the Western Mass finals nine times, winning five titles and tying the other four. As the 1963 season approached, and another strong team coming back, he approached his Principal, George Russel, regarding a legitimate State tournament. Ludlow won the first State Championship and then the next three.
Kurty to everyone’s surprise left Ludlow to coach the Westfield State College men’s soccer team. He enjoyed tremendous success here too. Coaching for 11 seasons, his best team was in ’74 where the team reached the final four in D3 and ended up finishing in third in the country. His teams went to five consecutive NCAA tournaments and he retired from coaching with a .790 winning percentage, best among New England coaches. He retired from coaching in 1976.
All the while John joined the PVSOA in 1952. He refereed several hundred games in between coaching his practices and games in Ludlow. He was the PSVOA’s Sec/Treas. in 64-65; Vice-President 66-67; President 68-69; won the Larry Briggs award in 1962; has a sportsmanship award named in his honor for small school girls in WMass; has been a MIAA observer for several years; and is a life member of the PVSOA.
John’s other passions were baseball and golf, where he excelled in both. He umpired for more than 50 years, starting in 1953. In golf he carried a 2-handicap, winning many Clun Championships along the way.
Kurty taught from 1951 to 1988, is a member of four Hall of Fames, and has a high school soccer league bearing his name, won three State Championships and brought a college team to its apex. His most cherished memories are the lifelong relationships he has built with his former players, coaches and officials. His is well known and most respected in the many circles he has traveled.
John lives in Westfield MA and in Florida in the winters with his wife Rita. He is also a very proud World War II Veteran who earned a battle star while serving the US in the Pacific Theater.

Stanley Bernatowiez (Inducted in 2007)

Stanley Bernatowiez (deceased 2010) joined the ranks of the PVSOA in 1956. Like most officials at this time he also coached. He was a long time coach at East Longmeadow MA High School where he also taught.
While on the PVSOA board he took on many roles including; Vice-President 74-75; President 76-77; was the Larry Briggs winner in 1975; has a division 3 girl’s MVP Award named in his honor; was an Assessor for the PVSOA and NISOA; and a board member for PVSOA. He was an assignor for the PVIAC for several years.
Stan was a quiet man who knew what to say and how to come across in a gentle, positive manner in whatever the case was. He showed this in his dedication and work ethic when he would spend hours of his time traveling around the area assessing new officials. He not only refereed many games over the years, but he probably saw more games as an assessor. You could expect a fair but firm assessment form Stan every time.
Stan lived in Ludlow with his wife, also deceased and they had a couple of children.

Carl Erickson (Inducted in 2008)

(More information is forthcoming)
Carl joined the PVSOA in 1956. He was the winner of the Larry Briggs Award in 1977. He has a sportsmanship award named in his honor that goes to a boys’ team in the small schools division. He was a past player an official who helped shape officiating to its present high standards.

Ted Smith (Inducted in 2009)

Ted was born in 1924 in Hardwick MA, moved to West Springfield where he graduated from West Springfield High, then on to Monson Academy and then Springfield College. He played soccer for the legendary coaches such as Pop Fielding at WSide, Dwight Morrow at Monson Academy and then John Brock at Springfield College. He was a member of the 1946 National Champions at Springfield College; Co-Captain of the 1947 National Championship team; Played amateur soccer for many local clubs.
Ted joined the PVSOA in 1948 and was an active member for 38 years. He held the offices of Sec/Treas. in 58-59. He was a charter member of NEISOA and NISOA. He was an ECAC official for 35 years and officiated over 400 ECAC games. He did hundreds of high school and prep school regular season games as well as tournament games. Ted was on the NCAA rules committee for 7 years; the NISOA newsletter editor as well as Secretary and Treasurer of NISOA. Ted received the Larry Briggs Award in 1961 and the Jimmie Downie Award (best official) in 1978.
Ted coached at West Springfield High School for 15 years and was the founder of the Western Mass Amateur Soccer League. He has a premier division in Western Mass boys named in his honor. Ted expanded the game and introduced the game of soccer to include girls in Western Mass in 1970. He represented the United States in the first cultural exchange to go to Poland in 1964. He was enshrined into the Mass High School Coaches Hall of Fame in 1990. Ted also is a life member of the PVSOA.
Ted worked for the city of West Springfield for 29 years before his retirement. Ted was married to Beatrice for 53 years before his death. He had 12 children and 34 grandchildren.

Benjamin “Benny” Santos (Inducted in 2010)

(More information forthcoming)
Benny began his career with the PVSOA in 1959. He was a very active member of the board holding the offices of Vice-President 78-79; President 80-81; and assessor for many years. He has a sportsmanship award named in his honor for a girls’ team in the small schools division. He was the recipient of the Jim Downie Award “Best Official” in 1979 and won the Larry Briggs Award in 1983. Benny was one of those early officials who did games for $5.00 per game and tournament games for free as there were no money to cover the official’s fees.
Benny resides in Ludlow MA with his wife.

WCSOA-Whaling City

John Medeiros (Inducted in 2006)

John Medeiros for over 50 years has made significant contributions to the game of soccer as a player, coach, referee and administrator.
In 1961 John was one of the co-founders of the Portuguese Sports Soccer team. He founded the Whaling City Soccer Officials Association in 1965. Since that time he has been a Commissioner for the Association. While playing and coaching, he is officiating high school and youth games he is an Assignor for high school, private schools, and MAPLE league, South Coast, New England LASA League and LUSA.
John continues to be a compassionate ambassador for the game. He has held numerous special assignments to international teams that have played in the United States.
John began officiating in the 1950’s and is still active. In 1972 he was a co-founder of the Luso American Soccer Association (LASA); 1975 founder of the LUSO American Referees Association (LASA); 1986 award from the Mass Olympic Development program; 1991 inducted into the N.E. soccer Hall of Fame and received the outstanding High School Soccer Official Award from the Eastern Mass Coaches; 2004 USSF lifetime membership; 2005 was inducted into the Mass State Soccer Hall of Fame. He has officiated well over 1,000 games and numerous tournament games at all different levels of play.
John is married to his wife Alice and is retired.

John Donnelly (Inducted in 2006)

John Donnelly began his soccer officiating career in 1984. He is still a very active official. John has done over 700 games and 50 tournament games in his 22 years of service. He has held the offices of President and Vice-President for the Whaling City Soccer Association.
John has always been associated with fair play, has a good knowledge of the rules and great enforcement of the game of soccer. John is a much respected official. He has been known to allow teams to play the game, keeping within the parameters allowed by the MIAA and the National Federation rules. John is and has always been a dedicated, consistent, fair and knowledgeable.
John is a retired school teacher. He also coached High School soccer and refereed high school basketball.

John Santos (Inducted in 2007)

John A. Santos has been a member of the Whaling City Soccer Officials Association for approximately thirty years, serving as the Associations Rules Interpreter and Trainer for the past ten years. He has had extensive experience in both playing and officiating youth, high school, college, and adult soccer.
John was the Boys Head Soccer Coach at Durfee High School in Fall River for over ten years. He often talks about the lifelong friendships and special bonds with players over the years. A founding member of the Fall River Youth Soccer Organization, he was the Programs Director for the organization’s first six years and also developed a training program for youth referees. John was recognized with the Hometown Hero Award in 1994 for his service to the community. He was inducted to the New England Soccer Hall of Fame in 1995 and was the recipient of the E.M.S.C.A. outstanding High School Soccer Official of the Year Award in 2000.
John has worked in the Fall River Public Schools for the past thirty-three years. He is currently employed as a School psychologist and has held the positions of Supervisor of Special Education and Program Coordinator. His wife Carol has put up with him thirty-three years and they have one daughter.

Olimpio Pereira (Inducted in 2007)

After a career playing on second division clubs in Portugal, Olimpio and his family immigrated to the New Bedford MA in 1996.
After his arrival he began playing with the local semi-pro teams most notably the Fall River Sports, then afterwards the Portuguese Sports of New Bedford.
It was during this time he came to be recruited into the fledging of WCSOA, by then Commissioner John Medeiros to reference High School and also the local ethnic leagues. He continued to play and then coach a couple of semi-pro teams one being St. Michaels Club.
During the course of a twenty year period he officiated close to 400 games and numerous playoff games in his High School career. Olimpio was one of the early contributors to the growth of soccer in the South Coast region.
In 1989 he decided to retire from refereeing to devote more time for his family.