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October 04, 2005
UD to Induct Three Into Athletic Hall of Fame and One into Athletic Hall of Distinction


Saturday, October 8, 2005 the University of Dubuque will induct three individuals into the Athletic Hall of Fame: Timothy Finn (C'82), Robert W. Raleigh III (C'94), and Darrel Rathje (C'62); and Warren Melchert (C'55) into the Athletic Hall of Distinction.

The University of Dubuque Alumni Association established the Alumni Athletic Hall of Fame in 1989 as a permanent place to honor those individuals who have promoted and served the University through its athletic programs. The Hall of Fame recognizes former student-athletes, coaches, and supporters who have contributed to the success of the University of Dubuque both on and off the athletic field. It further promotes the University intercollegiate athletic program and creates a focal point for alumni, family, friends, and current University students, faculty, and staff.

A new group of awards, the Athletic Hall of Distinction, are given to other supporters of UD's athletic programs. The Hall of Distinction is designed to recognize those individuals who have given unselfishly to further the University's Athletic Programs and support its athletes. Recipients of the award have made a significant contribution to UD as an administrator, member of the athletic support staff, coach, or booster alumnus/alumna.

Athletic Hall of Fame

Timothy Finn (C'82)
Timothy Finn is proud of being on the Dean's List during his UD years, and also of his contributions in four sports at UD, but it is his love of football that continues today in an area where high school stadiums resemble large college facilities and where major colleges recruit the future college and NFL stars. To Finn it's the only place to be on a Friday night, coaching Texas High School football.

Finn was a four-sport student-athlete (baseball, basketball, football, and track) at UD. He was a four-year starter and a team captain in football and baseball for the Spartans. He led the Spartans baseball team in hits and runs scored and named MVP freshman of the basketball team.

Finn ranks 1st at UD in rushing touchdowns in a career with 28 and ranks 3rd in rushing in a season with 931 yards in 1980. He held the career and single season rushing records for a number of years. He was a three-time Academic All-American and received an NCAA post graduate scholarship and attended Lubbock Christian College where he earned a master's degree.

While a student at UD he was a member of New Que, Mu Sigma Beta, was honored with the Business Administration Award, and was named to the Dean's List every semester. Finn's love of sports continued after college, and he was named assistant coach of the year by the Greater Houston Football Coaches in 2000. He was named head football coach and athletic director in 2001. He was honored as the Bay Area Coach of the Year in 2001, and District 23 Coach of the Year in 2004. Finn helped coach teams to Texas High School Football State Titles in 1997 and 1999.

He and his wife Cindyof 11 years have three children: Timothy Rogan, Baily, and Riley. They reside in Texas City, Texas.

Robert W. Raleigh III (C'94)
Robert W. Raleigh III was one of the fastest men in the nation in track and field in the early 1990's, but today he spends his days helping homeowners find the perfect roof for their historical dream home. Restoration requires hard work, attention to detail, a respect for craftsmanship, and quality materials, and the professionalism of a job well done were the seeds planted while Raleigh was a student at UD. He has taken those qualities to a company which continues to grow today.

Raleigh was a four-year letterwinner in football, earning First Team All-Conference honors as a defensive back in 1993. He also became a two-time conference champion in the 100 meter and 200 meter dashes in outdoor track and field. He was a team captain in both sports, capturing All-American honors in 100 meter and 200 meter dashes in 1994 by placing fifth.

After college, Raleigh was a sales and marketing manager for a company which produced historical tile and slate roofing materials. Since 1996, Raleigh has been vice-president and general manager for Renaissance Roofing, Inc., a company that provides tile, slate, and copper roofing systems exclusively for historical restoration work as well as other roofing applications. He has helped increase yearly revenue by 500% in seven years with a full-time staff of 45 people.

He is married to Nelly Seyller and they have three children: Robert IV, Isabella, and Jacqueline. They reside in Loves Park, Ill.

Darrel Rathje (C'62)
Darrell Rathje's experience at UD as a key member of a team and his ability to understand the competition prepared him to succeed in business, but he wouldn't have known he would dedicate much of his life to the sign business. His company created and designed eye-catching marques drawing business to their clients. Through his contacts he has spent countless hours donating his time to many local charities and youth organizations since graduating from UD in 1962.

Lettering four years in football, three years in basketball, and three years in track, Darrel Rathje's accomplishments are many.

Rathje was co-captain of the football team for two years and earned all-conference recognition during his sophomore and junior years. He represented the State of Iowa as Little All-American and received honorable mention nationally during both his sophomore and junior years. He was captain of the basketball team for one of his three years, and was a member of the UD Team of the Decade ('60s). In 1962 he was honored as Senior Athlete of the Year.

After graduating, Rathje continued to achieve great things- this time, off the field. He dedicated much of his working career as owner of a company that designed and produced advertising signs. For the past ten years, he has worked part-time as a corporate trainer for Express Communications, and assists with his wife's antique and estate sale business. He has served two terms on the Alumni Board. His volunteer activities include: Minneapolis Aquatennial Parade chairman, YMCA, Deacon, Habitat for Humanity, Hearts and Hands, junior youth leader, and Little League football coach.

Darrel and his wife Judy (Robertson C'62) have been married for forty-two years and have two children and three grandchildren. They reside in Minneapolis, Minnesota.)

Athletic Hall of Distinction

Warren Melchert (C'55)

Leading has been a part of Warren Melchert's life. What began at UD in the early '50s continued to be his path long after graduation for the Hall of Distinction honoree. He activities around campus prepared him for his duties as an officer in the Marines and to the top of the insurance industry for over 41 years.

Melchert competed in three sports at UD (cross country, track & field, and wrestling). He dominated the competition, winning three conference titles in the men's pole vault from 1953-1955. He was a member of four conference title teams while competing in track and field and held the pole vault school record at 12 feet and 3 inches for a number of years.

While a student-athlete, Melchert was active across campus participating in student government, choir, Phi Omicron, the Que, and as president of the "D" Club.

Upon graduating from UD, Melchert served as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps stationed in Okinawa, Japan. After his return from abroad, he joined Met Life Insurance Company for the next 41 years. He was the first agent in Iowa to lead the state in sales. During his years at Met Life, he worked to achieve several professional designations including Chartered Life Underwriter, Life Underwriter Training Council Fellow, Chartered Financial Consultant, and Register Investment Advisor. He earned the honor of being the #1 salesperson in the territory and led his sales team to be honored as the #1 district in sales.

Melchert was a proud member of the local Jaycees and Rotary Clubs and past president of UD Alumni Association, Dubuque Symphony Orchestra, Dubuque Arts Council, Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, Dubuque Life Underwriters Association, Million Dollar Round Table, and Dubuque Ambassadors.

He and his wife Betty have four children: Sherri, Michelle, Jeff, and Stephanie, and recently celebrated 50 glorious years of marriage. They also are the proud grandparents of nine grandchildren.