There will be three new, very deserving members in the Oakland Sports Hall of Fame. Every year the Sports Association of Oakland elects members to the Hall of Fame. Each member’s plaque is found on the west wall inside of the Danny Delia building. The 2020 nominees have dedicated years to serving Oakland’s youth and were perfect stewards of the Oakland recreation program. Oakland is a very unique community where volunteerism drives so much of our town and our recreation program is lead by all volunteers. Below is the Hall of Fame Class of 2020, in no particular order.
Bill Savage was the lifeblood of Oakland’s basketball program for over 15-years. Besides being its travel & referee coordinator, as well as travel coach, Bill helped raise tens of thousands of dollars for the program. He also coached soccer and softball for 5 years, and baseball for eight. Most recently Bill retired as coordinator and player for men’s adult basketball. When Bill was asked about his pending induction he said, "It was important for me to teach the kids about the sports I coached, ensuring that it was fun and hoped to have them acquire a love for the games they played.” Bill added, “Most importantly it was about being a positive influence on the kids and have them know that I would always be there for them, on and off the court or field. I will always cherish my time, sharing experiences with the youth of Oakland. They made me a better person." Beautifully stated.
Dave Altana is one of the founders of what is Oakland’s modern travel baseball program; he was also a mainstay at coaching baseball and basketball for over a decade. Dave’s technical skills in finance came very helpful as he was treasurer and helped create 501(c) 3 designations for the now defunct Oakland Travel Baseball Organization, the Sports Association of Oakland and the IHHS Blue and Gold club. Dave’s has been the backbone for so much in recreation while his depth of humility always kept him behind the scenes. Dave recently said of his induction “I am so thankful for the exceptional Oakland recreation program. It has provided my sons with so many great experiences and has given me the opportunity to share those memories with them”. Dave continues “I have also met so many wonderful parents who have given their time to make Oakland sports special for all the kids in town. I will always remember the times coaching and watching my boys play as some of the best times of my life.” Dave, Oakland Thanks You!
Our final new member sadly is a posthumous induction. Howie Levine was always around Oakland recreation where he was a long time girls’ basketball and softball coach. He was known for teaching the special skills necessary for softball players. Later in life he was seen on the basketball court and softball field refereeing and umpiring youth games. Coach Howie touched so many lives and is still an influence today on those that knew him and learned from him. The Levine family is a proud civic minded one that doesn’t need to keep Howie’s memory alive, the life he lived accomplished that alone. His wife Trish Levine, who many know through her dedication with the Oakland Mother’s Club, was asked about this special honor “I know he is looking down from heaven with a beautiful smile! Nothing made him happier than being on those softball fields and basketball courts. He loved the kids, EVERYONE of them!” Thank you Trish and the Levine Family.
The award ceremony is usually held in June, but due to the national emergency this year it was postponed. We hope to hold it in the fall, depending on the circumstances. Look for an announcement when a date is set. Congratulations once again to three Oakland heroes!