Class of 2023

PICTURED: The National Wrestling Hall of Fame, Upstate NY Chapter, Class of 2023 is pictured here in their green jackets (left to right): John Leone, Dave Hickson, Robert Coppola, Ton Stanbro, Jack Romagnoli, Gary Edwards, Kevin Gallagher.


The National Wrestling Hall of Fame banquet held on September 24, 2023, inducted seven distinguished members into its ranks:

  1. Robert Coppola: Known for his exceptional coaching career spanning 37 years, predominantly at Central Square High School. His coaching achievements include guiding wrestlers to state championships, coaching multiple Section III Champions, and earning recognition as Coach of the Year multiple times.

  2. Gary Edwards: An accomplished athlete and coach who excelled in wrestling at Peru Central School. He dedicated himself to coaching various sports, including wrestling, and played a significant role in producing numerous sectional champions and successful wrestling teams.

  3. Kevin Gallagher: Gallagher, a former athlete and coach at Minisink Valley, had a notable coaching career, leading his teams to several championships and coaching numerous individual wrestling champions.

  4. Dave Hickson: Hickson, a standout wrestler and official, had an impressive collegiate wrestling career at the University at Buffalo. He excelled both athletically and academically and went on to become a highly regarded wrestling official while also contributing significantly to the business world.

  5. John Leone: A standout wrestler at Penfield High School and Brockport State, Leone transitioned to coaching where he made a considerable impact, particularly at Penfield, coaching numerous champions and contributing to the sport in various capacities.

  6. Jack Romagnoli: Romagnoli's wrestling journey began in junior high and continued through high school and college. Beyond wrestling, he co-founded major construction and environmental companies, supporting infrastructure projects and employing former high school wrestlers.

  7. Tom Stanbro: Hailing from a wrestling family, Stanbro had a successful collegiate wrestling career and later became a highly influential coach, notably at Greene Central School. His coaching career, spanning various schools, included multiple state champions and a significant impact on Section IV wrestling.

These inductees were recognized for their exceptional contributions as athletes, coaches, officials, and influential figures within the wrestling community. Their achievements and dedication to the sport were acknowledged and celebrated during the Hall of Fame banquet.

Our Mission: To honor the sport of wrestling by preserving its history, recognizing extraordinary individual achievements, and inspiring future generations