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Bill Hoover

billhooverspecialawardI have been asked to make some comments about our Dear Leader, Papa Doc, Kim Jung Il President for Life  Bill Hoover who claims to be retiring for real this time from the Board of Governors.

Apparently, someone has been circulating a notarized affidavit with his fingerprint to ensure compliance with this latest pledge. He assures us however, that he will still be an active player and available as a judge.

During the preparation of these remarks, I needed to investigate certain personal facts. Since I was given this on short notice, I've had to make a few hasty assumptions.

It is likely that only one or two of these axioms can be true:

Bill was born in a log cabin on a mountaintop in Tennessee
Bill was born to Jewish parents in the Catskills
Bill was born in Peru to Indian parents
His favorite phrase is: ON MULTIPLE OCCASIONS
or that Bill was born in Canton, Ohio and left shortly thereafter for Toastmaster General training school

He prides himself at his tender age of 65 of being a Toastmaster attempting (in his  words) to add humor to presentations - trying to keep it light and making our members feel welcome. If you ever try to locate the microphone at any one of our events you'll inevitably find his hand firmly attached to it.

Certain facts remain uncontested:

He magically appeared one day in late 1979 or and became a Member of the L.A. Pool League having arrived directly from Canton, Ohio along with his child bride Lee. A closer look at Lee's name on their fancy return address labels at Christmas time indicates the use of an "E." before his name. He really is "Eddie" but prefers Lee. I call him Eddie.

Lee and Bill, at one time or another, have rescued more than twenty cats. They all lived in varying numbers and ages inside their Hollywood apartment. There must either be a beachhead or a giant sandbox since none of them were ever permitted to go outside.  Lee is allergic to cats. In the 32 years that I know Bill, no one can ever testify to having being inside their apartment.

Additionally, during this seemingly endless period of time, barely anyone can report seeing Bill behind the wheel of a car; I mean inside the cabin, not outside under a wheel.

Despite this, he has been present at every event imaginable and more in his long and distinguished membership in our League.

Since 1985, I have served on the Board for approximately twenty terms with Bill. He has proven himself to be a moderating force between the liberal views of the laissez-faire "peace and love" philosophy of George O'Hara and the hard-nosed views of other unnamed members of the Board such as myself.

Along the way he has been recognized by the League with a variety of Awards and citations, To mention just a few:

In the Fall 1986 season he was presented with our highest honor: The Marvin Beisel Award for Unusual Dedication to the LeagueHoover Miller

At the Spring 1997 Awards Banquet held at the fabulous Catch One, he was granted the League's Sportsmanship Award. With more than a thousand different players on our rosters since our founding in the Spring 1974, Bill joined a small handful of members to receive this distinction. The 1170 Bar; Tony Lobene, Bobbie Droukas, Jack Plimpton and Frank Bustamante.

And that was 16 years ago.

Some other notable points:

He has been elected to every Officer's position on our Board of Governors. No one else has had that distinction or breadth of experience.

He has attended all but three of the 66 West Coast Challenges. On one of those occasions, Bill had undergone hernia surgery but still managed to struggle in and perform his duties as a Judge when we hosted the West Coast Challenge at the Four Star (now known as Mickey's).

He was at the head of a very small group spearheading the creation of the WCC Hall of Fame and was later voted in as one of its Charter honorees.

He is proud of his record for Judging more WCC and LAPL Final Team Matches than anyone in history.

He also participated three times in the WCC HI/Lo.
once with Jimmy Dower. I still cannot divine which of the two was the HI.

He has certainly produced more GUIDES than anyone else.

hooverhaneiwichHe was our first Webmaster; succeeded by Jim Prather, Jon Bourgault; back again to Bill and now in the very competent hands of Bryan Haneiwich who has done a Herculean job of pulling this site together. He should be very proud of his work.

A few more observations:

He Co-hosted the Sponsor's Appreciation Dinner at the New York Company attended by over 100 bar owners, bartenders and major supporters held in 1987.

He received a Special Recognition Award during the banquet held at the PALMS Bar.

Recipient of a Special tribute presented at the Arena during the WCC acknowledging his 50 seasons on the Board of Governors

He briefly retired from the Board several times - If I had a nickel for every time he has suggested he might not be able to run again for the Board claiming that Lee supposedly wanted to move back to Ohio, we might be able to buy at least two shots of Grey Goose at the Eleven Bar

On at least three occasions, he left the board for a season or two and in one instance was called back to service within 45 days to fill a vacancy due to an untimely resignation.

Meanwhile, he has managed to find time to play pool and has now been a member of Six LAPL championships teams.

He has won trophies at every imaginable fundraiser. His entry fees alone over the past 34 years would probably fund a season of registration dues.

leeandbillhooverMeanwhile, ever the true POOL WIDOW, Lee has remained his loyal spouse during their 38 years together which will be celebrated this July 13th.

The list of fourteen sponsors he has represented in his 68 seasons:

In no particular order:
Mr. Mikes, Westside, The Study, Lodge, Club 22, Woody's Hyperion (Now M.J.s), Hollywood Billiards, Rawhide, The Oxwood Inn, Escapades, The Other Door, Spike, Gauntlet II and Griff's.

Let me say this about service. Bill defines the meaning of Service. He is actively engaged in the process both as an administrator and a participant. But more importantly, he has been the face of the League for many years to our sister cities. When they see Bill, they equate his presence with stability and continuity. This cannot easily be attributed to the other Leagues.

 People may say the old timers ought to make way for the next generation. And we do seem to have the next generation of volunteers moving into positions of authority. However, there is no substitute for the comfort that comes with a member such as Bill who understands our culture; tries his best to advance our interests both in the League and the community, and has maintained the respect that he has earned over the past 34 years.

We have been through life and death together. Our League lost nearly 100 members during the height of the AIDS crisis as evidenced by the four pool table sized panels of League names stitched  into the national QUILT.  We've had our moments but with the passing of time I've come to gain an even greater respect for his patience, dedication, loyalty and devotion to our League.

Many years from now, when an even longer view of our History is possible, one person will be atop the heap.

It is my pleasure to offer these remarks on behalf of our retiring TWENTY TERM President and ask all of you here tonight to join in recognizing the truly dedicated service and appreciation we have for our distinguished member, Bill Hoover.

Thank you.

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