North Carolina Amateur Sports
The North Carolina Swimming Hall of Fame was founded in 1985 by Hill Carrow, who was the Founder, President and Executive Director of North Carolina Amateur Sports. NC Amateur Sports is a North Carolina non-profit, charitable organization that continues today and is the organizer of the State Games of North Carolina. NC Amateur Sports was established to promote and support amateur and Olympic sports in North Carolina.
A Swimming Hall of Fame Committee was formed to establish the North Carolina Swimming Hall of Fame and the first meeting of the committee was held on March 13, 1985 in the offices of North Carolina Amateur Sports. Members of the North Carolina Swimming Hall of Fame Committee were Ceil Blackwell, Hill Carrow, Camilla Crampton, Mary Moxin, Judy Benda, Pete Benda, Don Easterling, Wayne Marshall, Martha McKee, Bob Jamieson, and Bill Sonner.
The first induction ceremony was held on May 11, 1985 at the McKimmon Center on the campus of NC State University in Raleigh. Don Easterling, noted head coach of the NC State University Swimming program, served as the Master of Ceremonies.
The Committee held inductions from 1985 to 1989, and after a one-year hiatus in 1990, a final induction in 1991. Those inductions enshrined a total of 22 honorees in the NC Swimming Hall of Fame, ranging from Olympians to special contributors whose hard work and special achievements elevated the sport of Swimming in North Carolina.
Throughout the years since 1991, there has been frequent discussion about re-starting the North Carolina Swimming Hall of Fame, but no major effort in this regard was initiated. However, it took the fourth edition of the Masters Swimming National Championships in North Carolina in 2016 to provide the spark to re-launch the NC Swimming Hall of Fame. Hill Carrow, who serves as Chairman of the Local Organizing Committee for the 2016 Masters Nationals, seized the opportunity and, with the approval of the meet’s host committee, booked the Greensboro Coliseum Complex for an Induction Ceremony to be held during the meet (which, in 2012, had over 1,900 participants including more than 600 from North Carolina).
So, finally, thanks to the efforts of a couple of the original Committee members (Ceil Blackwell and Hill Carrow) and a new group of enthusiastic organizers, the North Carolina Swimming Hall of Fame is set to have its first induction ceremony in 25 years during 2016.