Dorothy Gaters was recently inducted into the National Federation of State High School Associations Hall of Fame during a ceremony in Chicago on July 2, according to the Illinois High School Association.
The veteran girls’ basketball coach at John Marshall High and the winningest basketball coach in IHSA history was one of 12 people selected for the honor, “regarded as the highest achievable accolade in high school sports and activities,” IHSA officials said in a statement.
“Dorothy Gaters is high school basketball in Illinois,” said IHSA Executive Director Craig Anderson in the satement. “That is something I don’t say lightly when you take into consideration the history and tradition of high school basketball in this state, and especially in the city of Chicago. There are plenty of legendary coaches and players, but none has done it as long or as successfully as Dorothy.”
Gaters is the 28th person from IHSA to be honored in the NFHS National High School Hall of Fame and the ninth IHSA enshrinee to be inducted as a coach.
“It is a great honor to be inducted into the NFHS Hall of Fame,” said Gaters in the statement. “It is recognizing the accomplishments of so many dedicated young ladies who have made it possible for me to be a recipient. Our families, city, school and community share this award.”
Gaters has been coaching at Marshall, her alma mater, since 1975. Earlier this year, her team won the state championship, her ninth, when they topped Harlan in the IHSA Class 2A title game. Gaters has notched 1,106 victories throughout her career. She’s ranked among the top 10 winningest girls’ coaches in the country.
“She has never encountered a losing season en route to 27 state final appearances, which include three runner-up finishes and eight other state final trophies,” according to the IHSA.
“Dorothy is the epitome of what a coach should be in an interscholastic athletic program,” said Calvin Davis, the Proviso West High School athletic director, in the IHSA’s statement.
“It is difficult to find words that give justice to what she has achieved as a teacher, coach, mentor and role model,” he said. “No one has brought more dedication, desire, hard work and commitment than Coach Gaters. She has impacted thousands and thousands of students.”
This is just the latest career accolade for Gaters, who has garnered many of them. In 2000, she was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame and in 2009, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.