Randall, Gillis inducted into Broward Sports Hall of Fame

Posted on 26 December 2018 by LeslieM

By Gary Curreri

To the theme song from the movie, Rocky, former Pompano Beach High School running back Rocky Gillis appeared on stage at the Broward County Greater Convention Center and accepted his induction into the Broward County Hall of the Fame.

Gillis was one of seven sports legends inducted into the Class of 2018 including another Pompano Beach sports legend in Blanche Ely basketball coach Melvin Randall, along with Dave Hyde (Sports Media), James Reilly (Basketball), Twan Russell (Football), Claire Sua-Amundson (Softball) and Seilala Sua-Zumbado (Track and Field).

The Broward County Sports Hall of Fame 2018 Annual Sports Banquet and Induction Dinner took place at the Broward County Convention Center. More than 500 people attended the annual event to recognize athletes, coaches and pioneers of sports who are, or have been, Broward County residents. This year’s seven sports greats were nominated by Broward County residents and chosen by 14 members of the Broward County Sports Hall of Fame Committee, co-chaired by Joe Hess and Pat Lawlor.

It was quite a great event,” Gillis said. “First of all, the other inductees that I was going in with were pretty good people and that made it exciting. They were people that I really knew and worked with over the years. It just brought up a lot of memories.”

I actually chose the theme song from Rocky to come up and that brought back a lot of memories from high school as well because it was about that time,” said Gillis, who graduated from Pompano High in 1978. “Basically, it felt great because I felt like Rocky at the top of the steps. It was a good event. My family, friends and colleagues were all there. It was quite enjoyable.”

The Pompano Beach High School graduate is currently the Broward County Athletic Association Director. He is recognized for his dedication to his public education career where he has been a teacher, a coach and an athletic administrator at both Pompano Beach High School and Blanche Ely High School, as well as at the district level.

It’s always been my goal to provide experiences and information to all students and athletes, and, hopefully, I’ve helped them grow as people and opened their eyes to help them be a productive member of society.”

After a standout career at Pompano Beach High, Gillis graduated from Iowa State and where he was a 4-year football letterman. Gillis is married 32 years to wife Kimberly, and they have three children, Ashley, Roderick II and Rodney.

With Blanche Ely’s boys basketball team off to a 7-3 start, the Tigers are hopeful of defending their Class 7A championship from a year ago.

One honor has already occurred as Tigers coach Melvin Randall was inducted into the Broward County Sports Hall of Fame. Randall won two state titles (1997, 1999) in his eight seasons at Deerfield Beach before moving on to Ely in 2002 and winning six more championships in 2007, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2018.

This is indeed a pivotal occasion and I am humbled as I stand before you,” Randall said. “First and foremost, I want to thank the Hall of Fame committee for judging me worthy of this honor. To my fellow class of 2018 inductees, congratulations to you. It is a privilege to stand here and share this milestone with you.”

Randall went on to thank many of the coaches he has drawn inspiration from during his career. He thanked his coaching staff, former players, fellow teachers and family. Randall has won more than 550 games in his stellar career.

Registration begins for Women in Distress tourney

Early registration for previous teams and players for the 7 thAnnual Women in Distress Golf Tournament will be from Jan. 1 through Jan. 19.

Open registration then begins on Jan. 20 for other women players and teams until a maximum of 32 teams are complete.

Once again, the Colony West Women’s Golf Group will be producing the tournament which will be on March 21, 2019. However, the tournament will be held at Pompano Beach Municipal Golf Course this year because of construction at the Colony West Golf Club.

Because the (clubhouse) building is demolished so we could not have a luncheon after golf,” said Jan Parke, tournament chair. “We will play the tournament at Pompano Beach and eat at Galuppi’s Restaurant which is at the golf course.

For more information, details or the registration form, email janparke@bellsouth.net or the registration chair, Geri Thomas at gthomas6116@gmail.com.

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