The California Sports Hall of Fame will induct its first Hall of Fame class on Jan. 28.
The inaugural class of 20 athletes include sports legends Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Marcus Allen, and Jackie Robinson. The Induction Dinner will be held at the Hilton Anaheim at 5 p.m.
The ceremony will officially kick-off the California Sports Hall of Fame, a non-profit corporation, whose primary focus is to educate talented young men and women of California, and through its Museum showcase California Sports History. The Hall of Fame will honor and recognize the accomplishments and contributions of the men and women who have excelled in their respective areas of sports and sports media in the state of California first then, nationally and worldwide.
The complete list of the first Hall of Fame class selected by the board members includes: Abdul-Jabbar, Allen, Robinson, Elgin Baylor, Wilt Chamberlain, Eric Dickerson, Tom Flores, Chick Hearn, Reggie Jackson, Magic Johnson, Rafer Johnson, Deacon Jones, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Tommy Lasorda, Bob Mathias, Jim Plunkett, Bill Walsh, Jerry West, Kellen Winslow, and John Wooden.
The California Sports Hall of Fame was founded by former Kansas City Chiefs All-Pro running back and Azusa Pacific standout Christian Okoye. He also serves as president.
"The state of California has such a rich athletic tradition and there wasn't a Hall of Fame recognizing the caliber of athlete this state has enjoyed during its history," Okoye said. He added, "We now have a chance to honor California sports history and this first class truly exemplifies excellence."
The California Sports Hall of Fame is located in Rancho Cucamonga and has plans to build a California Sports Museum in Irvine.