Individuals in this category are the first, or among the first, to contribute significantly to
development, understanding, and promotion of whitewater sports.

Bob McNair Inducted 2005
Author of the book, Basic River Canoeing, it was “THE” manual in the 1970’s and 1980’s for basic whitewater techniques used by many to learn and teach whitewater canoeing. He also was involved in developing the American Whitewater Affiliation, American Canoe Association (ACA), and the National Slalom Committee.

Jim Snyder Inducted 2006
Known as the “Father of Squirtboating”, Jim’s invovative designs have influenced modern playboats.

Tony Prijon, Sr. Inducted 2007
Tony’s touch as a designer has impacted more than 45 years of the world of whitewater as few others have. Given his and the sport’s focus on competition, much of the efforts of his company revolved around slalom and wildwater.

Carl Luther Inducted 2008
Carl Luther, known as “CIL,” was an ardent kayaker and through his writing and photography introduced the public to kayak touring which included all levels of kayaking, including whitewater.

Mikhail Kolchevnikov Inducted 2009
In 1978 Mikhail Kolchevnikov initiated the first whitewater festival in Siberia. Called the Chuya Rally, this festival later evolved into Project RAFT with the first Project RAFT event held on the Chuya River

Theo Bock Inducted 2010
Theo Bock was renowned in his day as Germany’s first river explorer, an accomplished racer, and the organizer of the first German National Championships.

Graham Mackereth Inducted 2013
A founding member of Pyranha Kayaks, Graham Mcketherth was one of the first to produce rotomolded kayaks. A member of the Historic Canoe and Kayak Association (HCKA) Graham has a rich collection of historical canoes and kayaks.

Bill Masters Inducted 2017
Bill Masters is the Steve Jobs of the modern whitewater kayak industry. He took kayaking from the club days of fiberglass boats being manufactured in limited numbers and designs in the backyards and garages of America to the worldwide exposure it enjoys today.  The pioneer’s pioneer, Bill’s vision and commitment to excellence greatly influenced paddlesports from design and manufacturing to the evolution of the sport itself.  He has directly influenced every major kayak brand in the industry.

Christa & Hermann Kerchkoff Inducted 2019
Pioneers Hermann & Christa Kerckhoff (Canada) were founders of the Madawaska Kanu Centre whitewater instruction school. Their visionary leadership led to the creation of Canada’s first whitewater management plan and will ensure public access to the Ottawa River for future generations.