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West Bloomfield’s Hugh R. Jewell Named Vern L. Norris Award winner

Hugh R. Jewell

EAST LANSING – April 8 – West Bloomfield’s Hugh R. Jewell, a high school official for four decades and member of Halls of Fame for both the Detroit Public School and Detroit Catholic High School Leagues, has been selected to receive the Michigan High School Athletic Association's Vern L. Norris Award for 2014.

The Norris Award is presented annually to a veteran official who has been active in a local officials association, has mentored other officials, and has been involved in officials’ education. It is named for Vern L. Norris, who served as executive director of the MHSAA from 1978-86 and was well-respected by officials on the state and national levels.

Jewell will be honored at the Officials’ Awards & Alumni Banquet on May 3 at the Kellogg Center in East Lansing. He is in his 40th year as an MHSAA-registered official and has worked mostly in football, boys and girls basketball. He has received eight MHSAA championship game assignments over three decades and also been a frequent contributor to MHSAA and Detroit-area officials training efforts.

“I’ll never forget certain people who saw something in me even back then, in the 1970s and early 80s, when I was getting on my feet,” Jewell said. “Especially as you get older in this, you have to take on the mentality that whatever it is you learned over the years, there’s reason to give back and pass it to younger (officials). Now, reaching the point that I have, I think that’s why a lot of younger guys look forward to games (with me). They see my name, and they know I’m going to give them something to take home with them, even if it’s nothing more than a little bit of advice.”

Jewell officiated MHSAA Boys Basketball Finals in 1986, 1989, 1990 and 1997, and Football Finals in 1991, 1995, 2000 and 2006 in addition to a number of Semifinals and earlier-round tournament games. He’s also a member of the Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan and Highland Park Community High School Halls of Fame, and officiated college basketball up to the Division II level for more than 20 years.

A 1966 graduate of Highland Park High School, Jewell was decorated with the Combat Infantryman Badge, Bronze Star with Valor Award, Air Medal Award and Vietnam Campaign Ribbon while serving in the U.S. Army from 1968-70. Jewell then served as a Highland Park police officer from 1970-78, receiving numerous unit and individual citations, and continued as a police/liaison and security officer at the high school and adjoining community college and adult education center.

Jewell earned a bachelor’s degree in secondary education from Wayne State University in 1979 and took his dedication into the classroom two decades later after earning a teaching certificate in social studies in 2001. He taught from 2001-04 at Highland Park Alternative High School, 2004-06 at the Wayne County Juvenile Detention Center’s Ben Carson Academy and from 2006-10 at the Life Skills Center of Metropolitan Detroit.

He also has mentored officials, students and coaches at Detroit community and neighborhood centers, and taught volunteer officiating classes at Highland Park Community College from 1980-88.

“Hugh Jewell is highly-respected not only as a top official who has worked a number of Finals events, but also as a positive influence who appreciates the value of giving back to his community, “ MHSAA Executive Director John E. “Jack” Roberts said. “He’s passed on his expertise to countless colleagues and students as a clinician and mentor. We are pleased to recognize Hugh Jewell with the Vern L. Norris Award.”

Jewell also has served as an active member of his church and the Highland Park Men’s Forum. In addition to multiple Detroit area officials organizations including the Metro Detroit Officials Association, Jewell is a member of the NAACP and American Federation of Teachers.

He also has served as deputy director of the city of Highland Park’s Parks and Recreation Department, deputy superintendent of the city’s Water & Public Works Department and as a substitute teacher/security specialist for Southfield Public Schools.

High school game officials with 20, 30, 40, 45 and 50 years of service also will be honored at the Officials’ Awards & Alumni Banquet on May 3.

Eight officials with 50 or more years of service will be honored, along with 14 officials with 45 years. A 40-year award will be presented to 74 officials. In addition, 92 officials with 30 years and 183 officials with 20 years of experience will be honored. With the induction of this year’s group of 371, the honor roll of officials who have aided young student-athletes grows to 9,416 since the inception of the banquet in 1980.

Tickets for the banquet are available to the public and priced at $20. They will not be sold at the door. Tickets can be ordered by calling the MHSAA office at (517) 332-5046 or by sending the order form available at this link: http://www.mhsaa.com/portals/0/documents/officials/banquet.pdf.

Previous recipients of the Norris Award

1992 – Ted Wilson, East Detroit

1993 – Fred Briggs, Burton

1994 – Joe Brodie, Flat Rock

1995 – Jim Massar, Flint

1996 – Jim Lamoreaux, St. Ignace

1997 – Ken Myllyla, Escanaba

1998 – Blake Hagman, Kalamazoo

1999 – Richard Kalahar, Jackson

2000 – Barb Beckett, Traverse City; Karl Newingham, Bay City

2001 – Herb Lipschultz, Kalamazoo

2002 – Robert Scholie, Hancock

2003 – Ron Nagy, Hazel Park

2004 – Carl Van Heck, Grand Rapids

2005 – Bruce Moss, Alma

2006 – Jeanne Skinner, Grand Rapids

2007 – Terry Wakeley, Grayling

2008 – Will Lynch, Honor

2009 – James Danhoff, Richland

2010 – John Juday Sr., Petoskey

2011 – Robert Williams, Redford

2012 – Lyle Berry, Rockford

2013 – Tom Minter, Okemos

Last Updated: 4/11/2014 1:37:50 AM EST

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