Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship

The Ilio DiPaolo scholarship is awarded each year to five individuals who excel in academics as well as wrestling and contributing to their family and community. Each year the Fund also acknowledges and awards the St. Francis Football team Captains Award.

Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship

Ilio DiPaolo

The idea to create an award and the Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship in the name of Ilio DiPaolo was through the efforts of Bud Carpenter, Randy Ribbeck, Jim Kelly and the entire Buffalo Bills Organization. This group of Buffalo Bills felt that Ilio DiPaolo’s strong belief in education, athletics and family were essential for success. Ilio also believed that as your success grew so should the support you give your community.

The first year the Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship Committee gave two scholarships through the financial support of many friends, organizations, businesses and individuals. Then on June 7th, 1996 the first “Wrestling Legends of the Aud” was held. “Legends” was the idea of DiPaolo family friend Mark Stone and it was to bring Pro Wrestling back to Buffalo in the name of Ilio DiPaolo. The first “Legends” raised over $350,000 for the Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship, Children’s Hospital, Buffalo Police Athletic League, Hunters’ Hope and many other organizations.

Since that first year The Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship Fund has also grown and through various fund raising events such as the South Shore Rotary Club Memorial Golf Outing, the Romulus Club Sports Nite and the Celebrity Chef Dinner, approximately $750,000 has been raised.

A special recognition goes to all the people who have volunteered their time to make the Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship a successful reality, especially the Committee. The Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship Officers are President Bud Carpenter, Vice President Dennis DiPaolo and Secretary Michael DiPaolo.

The Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship Executive Committee consists of Bob Koshinski, Chuck McCollum, Bill Stachowski and Joe Shaw. The voting Committee members are Dick “The Destroyer” Beyer, Frank Nicotra, John DiBlasi, Dick Gallagher, Eric Knuutila, Linda Knuutila, Dick Lange, Mark Stone, Frank Cuomo, Randy Ribbeck, Russ Brandon, Chris Fischetti, Mike Garafalo and Adam Brunner. The Executive Director is Tim Maloney and Scholarship spokespersons are Jim Kelly, Steve Tasker and Ruben Brown.

The 2014 Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship winner is Rocco Russo from Frontier High School.  Other winners of the 2014 DiPaolo Scholarships are Alex Smythe of Eden winning the Gary Castanza Award, Renaldo Rodriguez-Spencer from Cheektowaga winning the Dick Beyer “Destroyer Award”, Marshall Taylor from Lockport winning the Bill Hein Award and Ryan Kromer from Lew-port winning the Cauliflower Alley Club Award.

Tyler Hall wins DiPaolo Scholarship

Tyler Hall of East Aurora wins 2015 DiPaolo Scholarship Award

ILIO DIPAOLO AWARD 1996 Greg Bentley (Ripley) 1997 David Guarino (Lake Shore) 1998 Ryan Bentley (Ripley) 1999 Greg Tompsett (Falconer) 2000 Brian Tatar (Sweet Home) 2001 Chris Purtell (Pioneer) 2002 Chris Terranova (Lancaster) 2003 Ryan Needle (Newfane) 2004 Joe Calderon (Eden) 2005 Kane H. Smith (Salamanaca) 2005 Matthew Mazgaj (Southwestern) 2006 Alexander Siedlecki (Clarence) 2007 Matt Mariacher (Iroquois) 2008 Christopher Conti (Fredonia) 2009 Jared Messina (Cheektowaga) 2010 Dominic Montesanti (Medina) 2011 Philip Czapla (East Aurora) 2012 Ben Haas (Salamanca) 2013 Drew Hull (Roy-Hart) 2014 Rocco Russo (Frontier) 2015 Tyler Hall (East Aurora)

BILL HEIN AWARD 1998 Chris Fairbank (Southwestern) 1999 Andy Johnson (Southwestern) 2000 Joseph Glinsky (Iroquois) 2001 Dan Uderitz (Albion) 2002 Ryan Feltz (Springville) 2003 Daniel Murrer (Williamsville East) 2004 Brandon Monin (Lancaster) 2005 Errick Cholewa (Starpointe) 2006 Michael Bunn (Eden) 2007 John Taylor (Lockport) 2008 Mark Lewandowski(Lancaster) 2009 Matthew Peters(East Aurora) 2010 Joseph Kalinka (Iroquois) 2011 Adam Donner (Niagara-Wheatfield) 2012 Tony Lock (Pioneer) 2013 Jude Gardner Jr. (Fredonia) 2014 Marshall Taylor (Lockport) 2015 Donny McCoy Jr. (Niagara Falls)

CAULIFLOWER ALLEY AWARD 1996 Alonzo Roane (Niagara Falls) 1997 Anthony Calandra (Sweet Home) 1998 Adam Brunner (Clarence) 1998 Sean Deland (Williamsville East) 1998 Joe DeBarbieri (Portville) 1998 John DeBarbieri (Portville) 1999 Dan Thrush (Canisius) 2000 Adam Rowe (Ripley) 2001 Brandon Booker (St. Francis) 2002 Derek Ostrowski (Lancaster) 2003 Larry Aceti (Niagara Falls) 2004 Jeremy Stopa (Newfane) 2005 Stephen Sanderson (N. Ton.) 2006 Reece & Lucas Mariacher (Iroquois) 2007 Tom Rozborski (St. Joseph’s) 2008 Eric Velez (Medina) 2009 Clayton Reeb(Cheektowaga) 2010 James Donner (Niagara-Wheatfield) 2011 Dylan Duncanson (Medina) 2012 Tristin Hammer (Medina) 2013 Anthony Liberatore (Williamsville South) 2014 Ryan Kromer (lew-Port) 2015 Kirkland Feeney (Lockport)

GARY CASTANZA AWARD 1997 Dan Dixon (Niagara-Wheatfield) 1998 Adam Kampff (East Aurora) 1999 Brian Hanselman (Sweet Home) 2000 Robert Truman (Allegany-Limestone) 2001 Michael Sebaaly (Lancaster) 2002 Dan Faden (Amherst) 2003 Jamie Minner (Salamanca) 2004 Bradley Penhollow (Falconer) 2005 Mike Rozbowski (St. Joseph’s) 2006 Jamie Ott (East Aurora) 2007 Jacob Koshinski (Niagara Wheatfield) 2008 Matt Metzler (Salamanca) 2009 Carlene Sluberski (Fredonia) 2010 Kyle Colling (Pioneer) 2011 Abdulqawi Mohamed (Lackawanna) 2012 Tom Page (Eden)” 2013 Christian Saden (Fredonia) 2014 Alex Smythe (Eden) 2015 Alexander Kelly (Pine Valley)

DESTROYER” WRESTLING RECOGNITION AWARD 1997 Josh States (Lockport) 1998 Rashad Evans (Niagara-Wheatfield) 1999 Ryan Fralick (Falconer) 2000 Bill Prince (Frewsberg) 2001 Victor Arena (Salamanca) 2002 J.R. Roberts (Medina) 2003 William Sidey (Fredonia) 2004 Kevin Rosplock (Cassadaga Valley) 2005 Justin Walp (Lewiston-Porter) 2006 Daniel Audy (Clarence) 2007 Salvatore Montesanti Jr. (Medina) 2008 Robin Broda (Eden) 2009 Kenneth Betts (Fredonia) 2010 Angelo Malvestuto (Niagara-Wheatfield) 2011 Irwin Buck (Niagara Falls) 2012 James Kloc (Iroquois) 2013 Eric Lewandowski (Lancaster) 2014 Renaldo Rodriquez-Spencer (Cheektowaga) 2015 Cody McGregor (Tonawanda)

ST. FRANCIS CAPTAINS AWARD1996 Peter Talty 1997 Robert Crummet 1998 Dan Puckhaber 1999 Nathaniel Suchyna 2000 Michael Radon 2001 William Seychew 2002 Adam Hass 2003 John Lambert 2004 Ralph Pignataro 2005 Nick MacDonald 2006 Pat Garvin 2007 Luke Tasker 2008 Delano Fabor 2009 Brandon McLean 2010 Adam Pasnik 2011 Akheel Lynch 2012 Jarrett Dolegala  2013 Jake Dolegala 2014 Nick Weikle 2015 Jonathan Strawbrich