The West Virginia University School of Physical Education will honor five alumni at its 18th annual Hall of Fame induction ceremony at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct.14, at Erickson Alumni Center.
Longtime professor and former dean of the WVU School of Physical Education, J. William Douglas, will accept the 2005 Outstanding Alumnus award. Entering the PE Hall of Fame will be inaugural member of the Womens Basketball Hall of Fame Carol Eckman (posthumously), retired golf professional Michael Krak, former Middle Tennessee State vice president Robert C. LaLance, Jr. and well-known aquatics professor Mary O. Wykle.
The Class of 2005 inductees represents a nationally recognized golf professional, an internationally recognized aquatic therapy teacher and scholar, a pioneer in intercollegiate womens basketball and a university vice president for student affairs,said Dean Dana Brooks.The School of Physical Education is proud to add the names of this years class to the 86 outstanding alumni previously inducted into the Schools Hall of Fame.
J. William Douglas received his B.S. and M.S at WVU then began his teaching career at Glenville State College in 1962. In 1967, he moved to Ohio State, where he earned a Ph.D in 1969. He was named chair of the department of Health and PE and Director of Athletics at Kentucky Wesleyan College in 1969, then returned to WVU as professor and chairperson of physical education in 1972.
In 1979, Douglas was named dean of WVU s School of Physical Education, a position he held until 1992, when he returned to the faculty ranks as a professor in the sport management program until his retirement in 2001. Currently he serves as professor emeritus in the School of PE.
A 2001 PE Hall of Famer, Douglas served as president of state and district professional organizations and as a member of two national Board of Governors. He has received numerous service awards and has been active in several community organizations including PATCH , Rotary Club, American Red Cross, Vision 2000 and Valley Community Mental Health Center.
He and his wife Karen, a professor emeritus in the WVU Department of Community Health, reside in Morgantown.
Carol A. Eckman, considered themother of the womens collegiate basketball championship,completed her doctorate degree in physical education from WVU in 1983. In 1969, she established the first National Invitational Womens Intercollegiate Basketball Tournament, hosting a 16-team tournament at West Chester State College. The first tournament, won by her undefeated West Chester State team, was a forerunner of the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW) and the NCAA championships.
Eckman began her coaching career at the high school level, then moved on to State University of New YorkNew Paltz (1962-67), West Chester State College (1967-72), Indiana University of Pennsylvania (1973) and Lock Haven (1973-77). Her West Chester State squad won that inaugural championship and finished second in the tournament from 1970-72. In addition to coaching basketball, Eckman served as an assistant professor, associate professor and co-athletics director and coached field hockey, softball and tennis.
In 1982 she received the AIAW Merit Award for leadership. She is also a member of the College of New Platz Hawk Athletic Hall of Fame and the West Chester University Hall of Fame. Eckman passed away as a result of cancer in 1985. The Carol Eckman Award was created in her honor and is presented annually by the Womens Basketball Coaches Association.
Michael Krak received his B.S in PE from WVU in 1948. He played golf for four years and served as captain of the team from 1947-1948. Upon graduation, he moved to Cleveland, Ohio, as assistant professional at Canterbury Golf Course. After serving three years (1951-1954) in the Air Force, he joined the PGA Tour in 1954. After two seasons, he returned to Morgantown as head professional at Lakeview Golf Club, serving in that capacity until 1962.
After stops as club pro in Purchase, N.Y., Oceanside, N.Y. and Darien, Conn., he was involved in the development of plans for the Pete Dye Golf Course in Bridgeport. In 1980, he was named Director of Golf at National Golf Course in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., serving as host professional for the 1983 Ryder Cup. Throughout his career as a club professional, he played in five U.S. Opens, nine PGA Championships and one British Open.
Mike is a good player, a first-rate golf professional and a genuinely nice person who handles himself well on and off the golf course,golf legend Jack Nicklaus wrote on his behalf.A devoted family man with wholesome family values, Mike sets a fine example for young players and professionals.
Krak is retired, but still teaches private lessons in Palm Beach Gardens, where he lives with his wife, Susan (WVU, B.S. PE 1959 ).
Robert C. LaLance, Jr., a Huntington native, received a B.S. degree from the School of PE in 1962, a M.S. from the University of Tennessee in 1963 and a Doctor of Arts degree from Middle Tennessee State in 1974.
He served as an administrator at Middle Tennessee State for 35 years, retiring in 1998. For six years (1963-69), LaLance served as an instructor, assistant professor and director of intramural sports. He served as Dean of Men from 1969-70 and Dean of Students from 1970-75. In 1975, he was named Vice President for Student Affairs, a post he held until his retirement.
In 1994, he received the John Jones Award for Outstanding Performance by a Dean presented by the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators. He also served a leadership role in several professional organizations.
He currently resides in Murfreesboro, Tenn. with his wife, Martha Lou (WVU, 1962).
Mary O. Wykle graduated from WVU with B.S. and M.S. degrees in health and PE. She is an assistant professor of physical education at Northern Virginia Community College in Alexandria, Va., where she teaches fitness, wellness, weight management, aquatics, yoga and pilates. In addition, she has an aquatic consulting practice that provides training in all areas of aquatics, and is licensed as an instructor/instructor trainer in Risk Awareness and Safety Management for Aquatic Therapy.
Wykle serves as a regular presenter and trainer at national symposiums and regional institutes for the Aquatic Therapy and Rehab Institute. She was Chairman of Health and Safety Services for Europe and District Chairman of Volunteers for the American Red Cross in Europe and Chairman of the Red Cross for the Far East. She conducted full CPR training for soldiers, and trained military members and their families to be swim instructors and lifeguards throughout military bases in the Far East.
She has been recognized by Whos Who in Aquatics, awarded the United States Army Outstanding Civilian Service award on four occasions, won the American Red Cross Clara Barton Honor Award for Meritorious Leadership and received the Dolphin Award from the Aquatic Therapy and Rehabilitation Institute.
Wykle presently serves on the WVU School of PE Visiting Committee. She resides in Burke, Va., with her husband, retired LTG Kenneth R. Wykle.