Serving Kentucky's Schools and Student Athletes Since 1917

06/28/22 – Official of the Year Winners Announced for Winter, Spring Sports

June 28, 2022 2021-2022 News Releases



Each year, the Kentucky High School Athletic Association honors the top officials for the 10 sports in which it licenses officials. Finalists in each sport are selected through a combination of not only on-field performance but local association activity and leadership, training efforts and the mentoring of newer officials.

One official in each sport is named “Outstanding Official of the Year” for their sport in appreciation of their dedication and service to schools and student-athletes across the state. Winners are selected following consultation with local assigning secretaries, veteran officials’ observers, coaches throughout the state and additional staff review.

The Outstanding Officials of the Year for the 2021-22 winter and spring seasons are James Johns for basketball, Joseph Phillips for swimming & diving, Eric Friddle for wrestling, Ron Rawe for baseball, Randy Chapman for softball and Sadie Gambrel for track & field, while Paul Lewis was named the Larry G. Boucher Assigner of the Year. Each finalist will receive a commemorative watch and certificate courtesy of the Officials Division Trust Fund, with the Official of the Year receiving an additional recognition award.

With officiating numbers declining at the national level, the KHSAA is always accepting applications from individuals interested in giving back to their community. Officiating remains a great avenue to stay active, earn extra spending money and ensure that high school athletics are preserved for the current and future generations. To get involved as an official, visit


2021-22 KHSAA Outstanding Officials (winners in bold)

  • Basketball: James Johns (Louisville), Michelle Thornton-Adler (Lexington), Brian Johnson (Jenkins), William Reed (Harrodsburg)
  • Swimming & Diving: Joseph Phillips (Russell Springs), Christina Pitt (Paducah)
  • Wrestling: Eric Friddle (Versailles), Josh Ashworth (Crescent Springs)
  • Baseball: Ron Rawe (Newport), Robert Gant (Lexington), Mike Wooten (Paducah)
  • Softball: Randy Chapman (Owensboro), Greg Meacham (Auburn)
  • Track & Field: Sadie Gambrel (Danville), Chris Thomas (Paint Lick)
  • Larry G. Boucher Assigner of the Year: Paul Lewis (Ashland)



About the Kentucky High School Athletic Association

The Kentucky High School Athletic Association was organized in 1917 and is the agency designated by the Kentucky Department of Education to manage high school athletics in the Commonwealth. The Association is a voluntary nonprofit 501(c)3 organization made up of 284 member schools, both public and non-public. The KHSAA awards 215 state championships to 51 teams and 164 individuals in 13 sports and six sport-activities, funds catastrophic insurance coverage for its more than 106,000 rostered member school student-athletes, provides coaching education and sports safety programs for more than 12,000 coaches and licenses and facilitates the distribution of training material for over 4,000 contest officials.


icon-angle icon-bars icon-times