Full size image of plaque
Bill Johns left Stamford Collegiate in the spring of 1957 and began a career in journalism at the Niagara Falls Review until 1972. He started as a "copy boy" writing obituaries and getting coffee for the managing editor. Under the tutelage of other reporters, he began to learn what reporting was all about and learned on the job as he began to write for the Sports Department.
For several years, he covered Junior "B", Intermediate and various levels of Senior Hockey in Stamford Township and Niagara Falls. He reported on mens fastball and wrote golf stories and columns of sporting interest along with assignments on badminton, tennis, and lawn bowling.
It was high school sports which he reported and promoted with excellence. In the 1960's he introduced a column entitled "Skip's Picks" in which he predicted the outcome of high school football and basketball games. The column was extremely popular and was designed to bring a higher profile to high school athletics. Student athletes and fans could not wait to see what school Skip had picked to win. The result of his column was unequaled attendance and enthusiasm for high school athletics. His impartial reporting gave a true insight into student athletes.
In 1972, Bill left the Review to take up employment with the Kitchener-Waterloo Record, where he continued to report on high school athletics, his true priority in Sports Journalism.
A colleague once asked him why he had such a passion for high school sporting events. Bill explained that high school students and their coaches were involved in the game simply for the love of sport, giving of their time, their sweat, and many times, their tears. "It's just for all the right reasons," he explained.
Bill "Skip" Johns is a worthy inductee into the Niagara Falls Wall of Fame as a builder of sport "for all the right reasons".
Additional Images & Resources
Click to view a photograph taken at the Induction Ceremony
From the library's image database (click the link to view the full record)
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