Six former Hiram College student-athletes will be inducted into the William H. Hollinger Hall of Fame on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015.
The festivities will begin at 10 a.m. with the induction ceremony in the ballroom of the Kennedy Center. The newest members will also be honored during pregame of football’s contest against Ohio Wesleyan.
The six inductees in the 2015 class are Kristopher Giebel ’02, Roberto Gironda ’89, Emmalisa (Brown) Kennedy ’03, Claire (Andorka) Runyan ’96, Brendan Smith ’84 and Rodney Thompson ’63.
To be inducted into the William H. Hollinger Hall of Fame, one must have made great contributions to athletics for their performance on the field.
Kristopher Giebel ’02
Kristopher Giebel ’02 was a four-year letter-winner in football for Hiram College.
He racked up numerous other honors playing for the Terriers, including: four-time team offensive MVP, team captain, Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) Player of the Week (multiple times), regional player of the week, national player of the week and Second Team All-OAC honors (1998).
His name is still etched in the Hiram record books, owning eight single game, single season and career records, including the single season rushing record (1,046 yards) and career rushing yards (3,361).
Giebel graduated in 2002 and served as a juvenile probation officer at the Geauga County courthouse in Chardon for 12 years. He recently accepted a position as a warehouse specialist at McMaster Carr in Aurora, Ohio.
Roberto Gironda ’89
Roberto Gironda ’89 was a standout player for the men’s soccer team in the 1980s, earning four letters.
He was a three-time First Team All-Presidents Athletic Conference honoree, earning the distinction in 1985, 1986 and 1987. In addition, he was named All-Midwest Region in 1986 and All-Ohio in 1986 and 1987.
He graduated from Hiram in 1989 and is the current president and owner of Dakoor Concrete, Inc. in Akron, Ohio. He also has served as the president of D.C. Trucking.
Emmalisa (Brown) Kennedy ’03
Emmalisa (Brown) Kennedy was a four-year standout on the track and field team for Hiram College.
She was a four-year letter winner in both track and field and soccer. Kennedy remains the most decorated track athletes in Hiram history, capturing the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) title in the high jump five times. She also captured conference titles in the long jump and heptathlon. During her career, Kennedy also earned All-NCAC honors in the high jump (eight times), heptathlon (three times), long jump (two times), 400-meter hurdles (two times) and the 55-meter hurdles. She qualified for the NCAA Division III Championships four times in the high jump and two times in the heptathlon. She owns indoor college records in the 55-meter hurdles, 200-meter hurdles, the distance medley relay and the long jump, while also holding outdoor college records in the 100-meter hurdles, long jump and heptathlon.
She graduated in 2003 and served as a coach of cross-country and track and field at Washington & Jefferson (Pa.) for two seasons. She graduated from Kent State University with a Master of Science in ecology and currently works as a wetland ecologist for EnviroScience Inc., in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio
Claire (Andorka) Runyan ’96
Claire (Andorka) Runyan was a four-year letter winner for the women’s tennis team at Hiram.
During her four years, she finished as a runner-up or champion four times in the Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC). In 1993, she was the runner-up at #5 singles and finished as the runner-up at #2 doubles in 1994. In 1995, she captured the titles at #2 and #4 singles. In addition to her on court successes, Runyan also was named Academic All-OAC.
She graduated in 1996 and currently volunteers as the coordinator of the local grade school garden in New Milford, Conn., while raising her two children.
Brendan Smith ’84
Brendan Smith was a three-year letter-winner for the football team.
Smith enjoyed his best season for the Terriers in 1982, when Hiram captured the Presidents Athletic Conference (PAC) championship. During that season, he earned First Team All-PAC and was named to the Associated Press Small College All-America Team as an Honorable Mention selection in that season.
He graduated in 1984 and currently serves as assistant principal at Grove City Area High School in Grove City, Pa. In addition, he is also working on his dissertation for a Doctorate in Education in Administration and Leadership Studies from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
Rodney Thompson ’63
Rodney Thompson ’63 was a standout swimmer from 1960-63, earning four letters.
He was named a team captain all four years and was the team MVP in 1960, 1962 and 1963. At one point during his four years, Thompson held the school and/or pool record in the breaststroke, butterfly, backstroke, individual medley and medley relay. He recorded two firsts for the Hiram swim program: becoming the first swimmer in the water for Hiram’s first ever meet and earning the first ever points for the program at the Ohio Athletic Conference championships.
He graduated from in 1963 and has served as a teacher, mental health counselor, salesman, manager and sports play-by-play announcer. Thompson also serves as a volunteer assistant coach with the Hiram College swim programs.