The Illinois Basketball Coaches Association has named their annual special awards winners for the 2022 year. These highly respected individuals and coaches will be honored at the 50th annual Hall of Fame Banquet on Saturday, April 30, 2022, at Redbird Arena on the campus of Illinois State University.

Chuck Rolinski Award

Bruce Firchau – (Elgin) Westminster Christian, IBCA Board of Directors, Basketball Museum of Illinois

An IBCA Hall of Fame Coach (Class of 2007), Bruce’s coaching resume would be enough to be selected for this honor. After finishing his career at Westminster Christian High School in Elgin, Bruce turned his energies to forwarding the ideals and objectives of the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association as a Board of Director and Chairman of the annual Hall of Fame Banquet. More than that, he has directed efforts to create the Basketball Museum of Illinois. Bruce and wife Mary Sue have dedicated a great many years to promoting all things basketball in the State of Illinois.

Ron & Rich Herrin Award

Carol Plodzien – (Palatine) Fremd High School and IBCA Board of Directors

 Coach Plodzien’s selection for this award is due to two facts: She represents Illinois basketball coaching at its finest winning 561 games in her IBCA Hall of Fame career (Class of 1995). She also has embraced the ideals of promoting girls’ basketball through her efforts with the IBCA where she has been a member of the Board of Directors since the late 1990’s. Carol has headed the committee selecting Hall of Fame inductees, worked on the All-State Teams selections committees, and was a motivating force to bring expanded media coverage to the girls’ state tournaments. Carol’s efforts make her an easy choice for this award.

Derril Kipp Courage Award

Dorothy Gaters – Chicago Marshall High School

What more can be said about who many would consider “The First Lady of Illinois Girls Basketball”? After a coaching Chicago Marshall for 45 seasons and winning 1153 games and 10 IHSA State tournament titles, Coach Gaters announced her retirement from coaching before this season. As important as her impressive career, the IBCA Hall of Famer (Class of 1996), advanced women’s sports not only in her beloved Chicago, but throughout the state and the nation. A pioneer who set the bar high for others to follow is a very humble thought for the person that she is. In this the 50th anniversary of Title IX, Coach Dorothy Gaters symbolizes the efforts that others may have started, but that she completed.