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Hall of Fame…

Has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?

Jon Burianek, 2015 Inductee into the University of Colorado Athletic Hall of Fame.  Has a really nice ring to it!

Jon is only the 67th person to be so honored.  According to Wikipedia,

The University of Colorado was a member of the Colorado Football Association in 1893.

122 years later, 67 people in total have been acknowledged for their Athletic Hall of Fame contributions, Jon is now one of them.

As a former, competitive, collegiate athlete myself, I tend to associate Hall of Fame designations with sports.  As it turns out, Hall of Fame roots are quite different.  Back to Wikipedia:

The concept of the Hall of Fame has its roots in ancient Norse mythology. Valhalla was an enormous hall in Asgard where warriors who were slain in battle would go upon their death. 

King Ludwig I of Bavaria was apparently inspired by this legend, and built two different halls inspired by the Norse legend: Walhalla near Regensburg, Bavaria (completed in 1842), and the Ruhmeshallein Munich (completed in 1853), whose name literally means “Hall of Fame.” These halls were museums containing plaques and statues of important German-speaking people, including scientists, artists, and politicians. 

In 1900, the Hall of Fame for Great Americans was completed. Inspired by the Ruhmeshalle, Dr. Henry MacCracken, chancellor of New York University, conceived the idea for this hall, built in the Bronx. The hall includes Americans in a variety of categories, including authors, businessmen, inventors, clergy, scientists, artists, soldiers, and teachers, but not athletes. The name of this building is the first time that the English phrase “Hall of Fame” was used. 

From there, it wasn’t that big of a leap to come up with the idea of a “hall of fame” dedicated to a particular sport.

Hall of Famers may have enjoyed financial rewards, but all were acknowledged for something other than making money;

I have come to realize that anybody can make money; it is much harder to make a difference. 

James P. Owen

Jon was inducted into the CU Athletic Hall of Fame for making a difference; here’s an excerpt from the Hall of Fame program;

Jon Burianek faithfully served the athletic department for 38 years…  The last 24 years of his tenure he served as associate athletic director of internal affairs… He finished his career working 415 consecutive CU football games (home, road and neutral)… the streak started…in 1970.

38 years; 24 in a leadership role; 415 consecutive football games over a 36 year span; rain or snow; near or far; sickness and health; faithfully serving – all with the same organization.  Hall of Fame indeed!

In our professional pursuits today, how many professionals do we know who are faithfully serving?  For 38 years? Maintaining a 36 year, consecutive streak – with the same organization?

Hall of Fame: Acknowledging the “best of the best”; honoring those who stood out in their field; celebrating their accomplishments; and thanking family members, friends, colleagues, and mentors who collectively contributed their love, time and support – without which – the Hall of Famer would not have been.

If you happen to know of such a person, offer them a pat on the back – they’ve earned it.  And then ask if they could use a little help – during Jon’s acceptance speech, he acknowledged dozens of people by name who contributed to the CU program’s success, and ultimately his personal recognition, because nobody can reach the Hall of Fame on their own.

And that’s called faithfully serving!

GAP

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2 Comments


  1. debbie
    Nov 11, 2015

    Great blog. It was sure an honor celebrating with John and his family.


    • Gary
      Nov 14, 2015

      Thanks for commenting Debbie! Yes, special people deserve such honors. Thx, GAP

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