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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE --February 10, 1999
Contact: John Johnson or Mike Clifford-- 517.332.5046

Larson Honored With MHSAA Forsythe Award

Bernie Larson, athletic director at Battle Creek Pennfield for the last 28 years, has been selected to receive the 1999 Charles Forsythe Award by the Michigan High School Athletic Association.

This annual award is in its 21st year of existence and is named after Charles E. Forsythe, who served as executive director of the MHSAA from 1931 to 1968. One or two recipients are selected each year by the MHSAA Representative Council, based on an individual's outstanding contribution to the interscholastic athletics community. Larson will be presented the award on March 27 at the Breslin Student Events Center in East Lansing at halftime of the Boys Basketball Class A Final Game.

Pennfield Community Schools has been Bernie Larson's career, arriving at the school as a coach and teacher in 1965. He became the athletic director five years later, and quickly became a well known leader on the local, statewide and national scene. He is an active member of the Michigan Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, is a charter member of the Pennfield Lions Club, and served the MHSAA for 10 years as a registered official in basketball and baseball.

He earned regional Athletic Director of the Year in 1991-92, and was selected MIAAA Athletic Director of the Year in 1991-92. One year earlier, he was honored with the MIAAA State Award of Merit.
During his tenure, Larson has hosted approximately 70 MHSAA district, regional and state tournaments while serving on numerous MHSAA committees. Just as giving to the community, Larson has served as assistant coordinator for the annual Custer Post 54 City Track Meet for 20 years and has been a prominent figure in amateur baseball, highlighted by acting as a co-host for the 1984 and 1988 Olympic baseball teams.

A 1965 graduate of Moorhead State University, Larson has done post-graduate work at North Dakota State University, Michigan State University and Western Michigan University. He is a Certified Athletic Administrator and a certified instructor for the Program for Athletic Coaches Education.

"Bernie is a great selection for the MHSAA's highest award," said MHSAA Executive Director John E. "Jack" Roberts. "He's the kind of servant-leader who is the lifeblood of school sports. Day-after-day, month-after-month, year-after-year, providing learning opportunities for students in sports. He is a role model for many people, including me."

Other recipients of the Charles E. Forsythe Award have been:
1978 - Brick Fowler, Port Huron; Paul Smarks, Warren
1979 - Earl Messner, Reed City; Howard Beatty, Saginaw
1980 - Max Carey, Freesoil
1981 - Steven Sluka, Grand Haven; Samuel Madden, Detroit
1982 - Ernest Buckholz, Mt. Clemens; T. Arthur Treloar, Petoskey
1983 - Leroy Dues, Detroit; Richard Maher, Sturgis
1984 - William Hart, Marquette; Donald Stamats, Caro
1985 - John Cotton, Farmington; Robert James, Warren
1986 - William Robinson, Detroit; Irving Soderland, Norway
1987 - Jack Streidl, Plainwell; Wayne Hellenga, Decatur
1988 - Jack Johnson, Dearborn; Alan Williams, North Adams
1989 - Walter Bazylewicz, Berkley; Dennis Kiley, Jackson
1990 - Webster Morrison, Pickford; Herbert Quade, Benton Harbor
1991 - Clifford Buckmaster, Petoskey; Donald Domke, Northville
1992 - William Maskill, Kalamazoo; Thomas G. McShannock, Muskegon
1993 - Roy A. Allen Jr., Detroit; John Duncan, Cedarville
1994 - Kermit Ambrose, Royal Oak
1995 - Bob Perry, Lowell
1996 - Charles H. Jones, Royal Oak
1997 - Michael A. Foster, Richland; Robert G. Grimes, Battle Creek
1998 - Lofton C. Greene, River Rouge; Joseph J. Todey, Essexville