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2024 Inductees

2024 Hall of Achievement Inductees

The following individuals will be inducted into the Larry Bruno Foundation Circle of Achievement for 2024.

Don Bocchi

Don Bocchi

Don Bocchi has dedicated over four decades to intercollegiate athletics at the NCAA Division I level. A Beaver Falls High School graduate, Bocchi played basketball at Adrian College and Duquesne University before earning his master’s from the University of Wisconsin. He began coaching in 1970 at Blackhawk School District, then moved to the college ranks at Kansas State in 1975 as a graduate assistant, recruiting coordinator, and eventually backfield coach for their first-ever bowl game appearance. Bocchi spent 9 seasons as an assistant football coach at Arizona State, helping the team win the 1987 Rose Bowl. In 1993, he transitioned to administration as President of the Sun Angel Foundation and Senior Associate Athletic Director, currently overseeing 11 varsity programs.

Alongside his wife Eileen of 44 years, Bocchi has two sons and six grandchildren. His 43-year journey has spanned coaching, recruiting, compliance, academics, fundraising and executive leadership.

Russ Chiodo

Russ Chido

Russell Chiodo dedicated nearly three decades of service to Beaver County’s emergency services division, where he modernized the 911 system and took charge during major disasters like the 1994 USAir Flight 427 crash. His calm leadership was integral in responding to that tragedy as well as other events like the Three Mile Island accident and United Flight 93 crash on 9/11.

Chiodo was born in Ambridge and joined the Navy at the end of WWII. After returning home, he married his high school sweetheart Betty Julia Snyder, with whom he had four children – Lisa Morrison, Russell S. Chiodo, Michael Chiodo, Robyn Miller and Beth Smith. The couple was married for 60 years until his passing in 2019 at age 81. Known for his gruff yet effective style, Chiodo left a legacy of preparedness and resilience in crisis management. He is also survived by 11 grandchildren.

Angie Kirkland

Angie Kirkland

Angie was a standout basketball player at Point Park College before earning degrees in early childhood education and nursing from the Community College of Beaver County. After a 31-year nursing career, which she continues at Atrium Health in Charlotte, NC, Angie found a new passion – horseback riding. In 2017, she founded Sisters With Horses Saddle Club, the first all-Black female saddle club in Charlotte, which hosts trail rides, rodeos, training and community events. The club was featured during Black History Month 2022.

A Beaver Falls native, Angie enjoys visiting her father Chuckie Kirkland and watching her daughter June, a high school basketball player, follow in her footsteps. Despite her accomplishments, Angie’s biggest joys are her three children – LaRance, Michael, June – and three granddaughters. Her journey spans athletics, education, healthcare, nonprofit leadership and family.

Ron Main

Ronald Main

Bio coming soon.

Hal McClain

Hal McClain

Bio coming soon.

Lou Pappan

Lou Pappan

Lou Pappan, born Elias Demetrios Papanikolaou in Greece, immigrated to the US in 1951 at age 21 to pursue the American dream. After serving in the Korean War, he married Panagiota in 1960, and they settled in Beaver Falls, PA, where Lou opened his first restaurant, The Sweet Shop, in 1961. Through tremendous hard work, he grew it into an empire of over 30 Pappan’s Family Restaurants and 20 Roy Rogers franchises. He built over 1000 homes in Western Pennsylvania and Arizona as a home developer. A dedicated philanthropist, Lou hosted Pappan’s Senior Citizen Picnic held in Brady’s Run Park, a free annual senior picnic for over 20 years, and supported many local charities and organizations.

He was a devout member of the Greek Orthodox church. Above all, Lou was a family man – a loving husband to Panagiota for nearly 63 years, a devoted father, and a beloved Papou to his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He passed away in 2023 at age 92, leaving a remarkable legacy of professional success, community service, and family devotion.

Bethany Pinkerton

Bethany Pinkerton

Bethany Pinkerton was a standout softball player at Beaver Falls High School, graduating in 1997. She was a four-year letterman who helped lead the Tigers to the WPIAL playoffs each season, including a runner-up finish in 1996. Bethany continued her exceptional softball career at Westminster College, where she was a three-time team MVP and the first female to receive a full athletic scholarship there. She set numerous pitching and hitting records at Westminster.

After graduating in 2001 with a business degree, Bethany began working in financial services. In 2004, she married Matthew Mitcheltree, also a Westminster alum. They have two children together – daughter Kaci Leigh born in 2010 and son Evan Burns born in 2012. Bethany was inducted into the Westminster College Sports Hall of Fame in 2009. She currently works as a wealth manager in Canonsburg while residing in Robinson Township with her family.

Bill Ross

Bill Ross

Bill Ross grew up in Beaver Falls, dreaming of following in the footsteps of the town’s legendary high school quarterbacks. Those dreams were realized when he became a two-year starter in football and basketball for the Tigers in the late 1960s. His athletic prowess earned him selections to the Dapper Dan Roundball Classic and Big 33 Football Classic. Bill went on to play football at the University of Michigan on two Big Ten championship teams under coach Bo Schembechler.

After getting his MBA from Pitt, he had a 30-year career in corporate finance with Ford Motor Company. Bill met his wife Rie while at Michigan, and they recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. The couple has three children and four grandchildren. They now reside in Tucson, Arizona, where they enjoy an active retirement filled with golf, pickleball, hiking and biking.

Larry Bruno Foundation

Hall of Achievement & Museum

1112 7th Avenue
Beaver Falls, PA 15010

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