There are many traditions in East Boston that have deep roots in the community and have grown year after year.
The East Boston Athletic Board is one of them and has, for 65 years, helped athletes in the neighborhood reach their full potential and encouraged them to continue their education in college.
The East Boston Athletic Board was founded in 1950 by a small group of East Boston residents. Their first meeting took place in the basement of Pepi’s Funeral Home.
At that meeting the founding members decided to build a vibrant and visible organization, which would emphasize the good and positive virtues of East Boston athletes. Shortly after the original meeting, the “board” determined its mission and goal was to establish an Annual Banquet of Champions at which time, all athletes who distinguished themselves in both athletic and scholastic endeavors would be honored and awarded plaques and citations for their achievements.
The first Banquet of Champions was in January 1950. In 1953, a couple of East Boston High School Alumni, who were investment brokers, started a scholarship fund with $1,000. The scholarship fund was named in honor of the deceased East Boston High School football coach, Fred L. O’Brien.
Over the years, the Fred L. O’Brien Scholarship Fund has awarded over $150,000 to help and support East Boston’s scholar athletes attend college.
From 1953 to 1959 awards were made to males only. In 1960, the Board decided to make awards available to females as well.
Throughout the years, due to the hard work of its members and diligent fundraising, the Athletic Board has been able to sustain and foster the Fred L. O’Brien Scholarship Fund.
We encourage the community to donate and support this important community event that will be held on Monday, June 22 at Spinelli’s in Day Square. Tickets are still available by calling President Joe Plagenza at 617-642-0145.
The East Boston Times would also like to congratulate this year’s award recipients;
John M. Sacco Memorial Trophy Outstanding Male High School Athlete
John P. Torrone Memorial Trophy Co-Outstanding H.S. Female Athletes
Laura Escolero – Lorena Escolero
Michael J. & Vincent Milano Memorial Trophy Outstanding Sandlot Athlete
Frank Scarpa Memorial Trophy Outstanding Sportsmanship & Athletics
Jerry Bartletta Memorial Trophy Athletics and Character
James Sartori Memorial Trophy College
James Sartori Memorial Trophy High School
Mario Sinatra Memorial Award Outstanding Achievement in Athletics
Special Recognition Award
Father Wayne Belschner
Co-Joe Guarnaccia Humanitarian Award
Sonny Buttiglieri and Sue Palma
Special Achievement Award
Jacalyn Anthony and Carrie Brangiforte
Coaches of the Year – Walter Sprigg Award
Robert “Bob” Anthony – Lorenzo DiBenedetto
EBHS Boy’s Ice Hockey EBHS Boys’ Soccer
Outstanding High School Swimming Athlete
Tony Santilli Memorial Trophy Outstanding High School Hockey Athlete
Al Festal Memorial Trophy Outstanding High School Baseball Athlete
Joseph P. Zito Memorial Trophy Outstanding High School Football Athlete
Outstanding High School Soccer Athlete
Co-Outstanding High School Softball Athlete
Carl Abate Memorial Award Outstanding High School Track Athlete
Coach Tony Geraci Memorial Trophy Flashback
Windsor Trophy Outstanding Hockey Athlete
Outstanding High School Female Basketball Player
Outstanding High School Volleyball Player
This event would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of the Athletic Board members, Elizabeth Ahern Nicole Mccormack, Robert E. Anthony, Larry Keegan, Dave Arinella, Damien Margardo, Dennis Bernabei, Joe Plagenza, Chip Dinicolantonio, Joe Ruggiero, John Fanning, Mario Santillana, Jim Geraci, Larry Sullivan, Joseph Guarnaccia, Tom Tassinari, Jim Kearney, Max Tassinari, Vinny Schettino and Joe Weddleton.