CANASTOTA, NY – DECEMBER 9, 2008 – The International Boxing Hall of Fame and Museum announced today the newest class of inductees to enter the Hall. Living inductees include bantamweight champion Orlando Canizales (USA), heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis (UK), junior lightweight champion Brian Mitchell (South Africa), matchmaker / publicist / promoter Bob Goodman (USA), promoter Akihiko Honda (Japan), journalist Hugh McIlvaney (UK) and broadcaster Larry Merchant (USA).
“We’re extremely excited about the Class of 2009 and very much looking forward to honoring the 20th class of inductees,” said Executive Director Edward Brophy. “All living inductees are anticipated to attend and participate in 2009 Hall of Fame Weekend festivities.”
The 20th Annual Hall of Fame Weekend is scheduled for June 11-14th in Canastota, NY. Over 20 events, including a golf tournament, banquet, parade and autograph card show, are planned. An impressive celebrity lineup of boxing greats of yesterday and today will attend this year’s Induction Weekend. The highlight of the weekend will be the Official Enshrinement Ceremony on the Hall of Fame Museum Grounds in Canastota, New York on Sunday, June 14th to welcome the newest members.
The Hall of Fame also released names of posthumous honorees: middleweight champion William “Gorilla” Jones, welterweight champion “Mysterious” Billy Smith and middleweight champion Billy Soose in the Old-Timer Category; manager Billy Gibson and commissioner Abe J. Greene in the Non-Participant Category; journalist Paul Gallico in the Observer Category; and Tom Hyer in the Pioneer Category. Inductees were voted in by members of the Boxing Writers Association and a panel of international boxing historians.
For more information on the events planned for the 2009 International Boxing Hall of Fame Weekend, please call the Hall of Fame at (315) 697-7095 or visit www.ibhof.com.