NeveHarms Long-time former Peoria Heights mayor Ray PicI, who has devoted thousands of hours to the local sports scene, is the winner of the Neve Harms Meritorious Service to Sports Award for 1998.
PicI, in particular, has been synonymous with the Bradley Chiefs Club and the Chicago Cub Boosters of Central Illinois.
He has been a past president and currently on the board of directors of the Chiefs Club, a major fund-raising organization for the Bradley athletic program. Head man of the Chicago Cubs Boosters for 13 years, his efforts have made the appearance of the cub winter caravan a major event in Peoria with thousands attending the banquet each year. During his presidency the Cub boosters club has donated well over $100,000 to local sports programs.
He also has been coordinator of the Central Illinois Chicago Bears Fan Club and last year he finished second among 96 fan club coordinators in membership recruiting.
He was chairman of the committee that brought Junior League Football to Peoria Heights. Other volunteer duties over the years included public address announcer for Peoria Heights grade school sports and Peoria Heights High School football and basketball, official scorer for the Peoria Heights High School girls basketball team and coach in the Peoria Heights Junior Basketball League.
Long-time former Peoria Heights mayor Ray PicI, who has devoted thousands of hours to the local sports scene, is the winner of the Neve Harms Meritorious Service to Sports Award for 1998.
Chad Clift is considered the first stand-out star in soccer from the Peoria area. He competed at Bergan High School, Viterbo College, and Bradley University. At Bergan, Chad was a three time All-Conference selection and earned 1st Team All-State and All-Midwest honors in 1987 and 1988. He achieved honorable mention NAIA All-America status in 1990 while playing for Viterbo College (La Crosse, WI) and holds school soccer records for career goals (59) and assists (17) in a season. Chad transferred to Bradley and earned 2nd Team All-Missouri Valley Conference honors in 1992 and 1993. He was also the team’s offensive MVP each season and holds two Bradley records: most goals in a game (5) and most points in a game (10). He was the 1st soccer player inducted into Bradley’s Hall of Fame. After his playing days, Chad remained active in soccer. He coached at East Peoria High School, leading the Raiders to titles in the Mid Illini Conference and a regional tournament. As a soccer official, he was assigned to the IHSA Boys State Finals in 2014 and for the Girls State Finals in 2015 and 2016.