HOF Inductees Reflect on Their Mentors

April 27, 2017 by Beth Sitzler

During the 68th NATA Clinical Symposia & AT Expo this June in Houston, NATA will induct seven more esteemed athletic trainers into its Hall of Fame. These seven individuals—John Anderson, MS, ATC, Fran Babich, MS, ATC, Tanya Dargusch, LAT, ATC, Katherine Dieringer, EdD, LAT, ATC, MaryBeth Horodyski, LAT, ATC, FNATA, Jeffrey McKibbin, MEd, LAT, ATC, and Michael O’Shea, MA, ATC, LAT—exemplify what it means to live a life of service, and were featured in the May NATA News.

Each Hall of Fame inductee has made a lasting impact on the profession, reaching many peaks and milestones throughout their careers and volunteer service. As they made their journeys, however, they’ve had help along the way. Mentors have shared their wisdom, offered encouragement and provided guidance both professionally and personally. Below, the 2017 Hall of Fame inductees reflect on the mentors who have influenced and helped them over the years.


John H. Anderson, MS, ATC

[My mentors have included] Kenny Howard, AT Ret., at Auburn, Herb Waldrop, AT Ret., Jack Hughston, MD, and James R. Andrews, MD.


Fran Babich, MS, ATC

I would have to say my parents had a huge influence in my life. They told all of the girls in the family that we could be whatever we wanted to be. They encouraged me to go after whatever made me happy, to work hard, and to make sure to be good to people along the way. As a student athlete, my mentors were my women physical education teachers and coaches. They taught me that it was OK for a woman to compete, challenge and stand up for what she believed in. As far as teaching me athletic training clinical skills, there was none better then Tom Little, ATC, head athletic trainer at Chico State. Academically speaking, Gary Delforge, AT Ret., and his master’s educational program at University of Arizona was the best in the country. When it came to leadership involvement and volunteerism, Lew Crowl, AT Ret., PT, and Lindsey McClain, ATC, were excellent role models and mentors. They encouraged me to become involved within the profession very early in my career. I was fortunate to be in the right place at the right time to work with the best of the best.


Tanya Maria Dargusch, LAT, ATC

I was fortunate enough to be educated by Ron Sendre and Ken Kopke. If it wasn’t for Sendre, I may not have been an athletic trainer. He gave me the courage to pursue the profession I love. They both taught me to think “outside of the box” when it comes to athletic training and the patients we help. They created the industrial athlete model, which I had the privilege to be a part of.

Through my career my athletic training colleagues have been a huge influence on me with their passion for the profession and their intelligent perspective. Jeff Ryan and Chad Starkey pushed me to first get involved on the national level. Michael Carroll with his passion for the profession, was integral in all we accomplished with the secondary school market penetration plan. Eileen Bowker, Mary Kirkland, Steve Bair, Bill VonLeer and Linda Mazzoli have always been there to be my sounding board for problems, frustrations and solutions. Michael Goldenberg and AJ Duffy promoted that same outside of the box thinking and are doers. I certainly could not have gotten through the crazy days juggling work and NATA stuff without my assistants especially Eric Schwartz. Charlie Thompson has been a big support and has always encouraged me to step outside my comfort zone and actively work to implement new ideas. They have all left impressions that will last a lifetime.


Katherine I. Dieringer, EdD, LAT, ATC

There are so many. Family and non-AT friends, of course, as we all know how important it is to have our support system. As a woman in this profession, the impact of Julie Max, MEd, ATC, and Marje Albohm, MS, AT Ret., cannot be overstated as they, along with many other women, paved the way for the advancement of women in positions of leadership in our profession. I was blessed to have worked with Paula Turocy, EdD, LAT, ATC, early in my career, and to this day I call her for advice and guidance, and though I worked with Jim Thornton, MA, ATC, CES, later in my service career, he likewise became one of my closest counsels and friends. My District Six family are too many to mention, but the two men who served immediately before and after me as director, Brian and Chris, are very special to me. My board brothers and sisters are likewise forever family, as is the very special Ken Locker, MA, ATC. As is true with many of us, some of our closest friends are athletic trainers, and there are too many to mention, but they have all impacted me by listening, advising and simply caring about the profession. Linda Mazzoli, MS, ATC, PTA, and Lisa Kluchurosky, MEd, ATC, however, have been my rock—my AT sisters. Thanks to you all.



MaryBeth Horodyski, EdD, LAT, ATC, FNATA

I was very blessed to have a large number of mentors including: David Tomasi, ATC, Alice McLaine, PhD, ATC, SCAT, Michael Sitler, EdD, ATC, FNATA, Christine Stopka, PhD, AT Ret., CSCS, Chuck Kimmel, LATA, ATC, R. T. Floyd, EdD, ATC, CSCS, Sue Stanley-Green, MS, ATC, LAT, Bobby Barton, DAT, ATC, Russ Richardson, EdD, ATC, Dr. Glenn Rechtine and Dr. Peter Indelicato.


Jeffrey Lynn McKibbin, MEd, LAT, ATC

I owe a huge amount of my career to Skip Wagnon who was my first athletic training mentor. He was the first person I learned my skills from as a student athletic trainer. I still use many of those skills today. Later, when he was out of athletics and I had been in his previous position as head athletic trainer for six years, I went to visit him for advice, during which he talked me out of quitting this profession. You see, I was unaware that the next year, he would become my athletic director and enabled me to change the face of our university’s athletic health care as well as my ability to grow in the profession of athletic training. He was one of my very closest friends until his untimely death in June 2015.

I also owe a lot of my career highlights to people like Jeff Fair who got me involved with state regulation, Jim Hillis, ATC, RPT, who supported me in many ways, DC Colt who has been a great influence as well as friend, Pat Forbis, LAT, who pushed me to get more involved at the district level, Eric McDonnell, MEd, ATC, LAT, who mentored me through the nuances of governmental affairs. I also value the help and dedication from my friend and colleague, Ed Sunderland, ATC, LAT.


Michael E. O’Shea, MA, ATC, LAT

[My mentors have included] Frank Medina, former head athletic trainer at the University of Texas; Don Lowe, AT Ret., LAT, former head athletic trainer at Kent State University; Jim Conboy, ATC, former head athletic trainer at the U.S. Air Force Academy; Ed Block, ATC, former head athletic trainer with the NFL Baltimore Colts; Otho Davis, former NATA executive director.