Big Green’s best athletes inducted into Wearers of the Green
By Elizabeth Sullivan, The Dartmouth Staff
Published on Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Over 160 Dartmouth athletes, coaches and Big Green supporters of the past and present were honored at the sixth Dartmouth Athletics Wearers of the Green ceremony Saturday night in Boston.
The Wearers of the Green was founded in 1984, and has since honored athletes who make outstanding contributions to Big Green sports. The Wearers meet every five years to honor new inductees.
The distinction was not limited to athletes from traditional varsity sports, as teams as diverse as rugby, figure skating, Ultimate Frisbee and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu were represented.
Five people were also granted honorary recognition for their lifetime contributions to Dartmouth sports, including College President James Wright and his wife, Susan Wright.
Dartmouth students and alumni of all ages were present. In the same night, both Stanley Skaug '43 and Peter Williamson '12 were honored. Skaug was an All-American basketball player, while Williamson was this year's Ivy League individual champion in men's golf.
Williamson said he was pleasantly surprised to receive the recognition after only one year of collegiate competition.
"It feels good," he said. "It's funny -- I'm a freshman, but being in that company already is pretty special."
To be inducted as a Wearer of the Green, an athlete must have achieved one of a list of specific accomplishments which includes becoming a member of an Olympic team, playing on a major league professional team or being named an All-American.
Peter Roby '79, Northeastern University's athletic director, served as master of ceremonies for the event. Roby was a co-captain of the basketball team while at Dartmouth.
Craig Henderson '09, co-captain of the Big Green men's soccer team, was one of several current students who were able to attend the ceremony. He said that meeting and talking to alumni Wearers at the event was a unique experience.
"They had a reception before it got started where everyone was mingling, and I met a couple of old soccer alums who got recognized there as well," he said. "It was cool to meet the old guys and hear them talk about their experiences. There were a lot of athletes there who had done some pretty remarkable things."
Henderson said that he could not solely take credit for being named a Wearer.
"I think a lot of the credit for this type of award has to go to the teammates," he said. "There's all the work that the coaches and the players put in."
Henderson does have many of his own achievements, however. In addition to being named an All-American and Ivy League Player of the Year, he was a member of the 2008 New Zealand Olympic team.
Sarah Parsons '10, a member of the Big Green women's hockey team, said that being named to the Wearers of the Green was both an honor and a surprise.
"I had a tough season," she said. "I think it was more of a reflection of my hockey career in general than just this year, but it was awesome."
Parsons was a two-time member of the U.S. national hockey team, and was on the 2006 team that won a bronze medal at the Torino Olympic games.
Coaches can achieve the honor by coaching an Olympic team or being named NCAA Coach of the Year, among other possibilities. Coaches still present at Dartmouth, however, are ineligible for the distinction.
Former field hockey coach Mary Corrigan was honored for her record at Dartmouth, leading the Big Green to four Ivy League championships. Loren McGean '92, a former figure skating coach, and former rowing coaches Scott Armstrong and Richard Grossman were all recognized for leading teams to national championships.
The Wearers of the Green also bestow an honorary recognition to those who have made a significant and extraordinary contribution to Big Green athletics.
In addition to the Wrights, Douglas Floren '63, John Engelman '68 and the late Kathy Slattery Phillips were all recognized as Honorary Wearers of the Green.
Ben True '08 made history by being the first athlete to be inducted as a Wearer in three sports: cross-country, Nordic skiing and track and field. True is a three-time All-American, a National Team champion, and a two-time winner of the Alfred E. Watson Trophy.