Wilbur Berkey ’33

The late Wilbur Berkey is honored for his accomplishments in baseball and basketball at Bluffton. However, he had many contributions to the community of Smithville, Ohio. He was a social studies teacher from 1935 to 1963 and a basketball coach from 1937 to 1961. He was a high school principal from 1941 to 1951 and also served Smithville High School as an athletic director.

Berkey had many contributions to Smithville but his contributions to Bluffton have also been appreciated. For many years he provided through his trophy business the fourth year Beaver trophy award. He has influenced untold numbers of prospective students to attend Bluffton. 

Berkey was recognized by the Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association in 1975 for his contributions to Ohio sports. Among his innovations was the County All Star game from which the proceeds were given to a Wayne County charity. In 1945 he started one of the first basketball coaching schools now famously known as the Northern Ohio Basketball Coaching School.

Berkey had been president of the Wayne County Education Association and appointed by the NEA to a National conference on fitness for secondary schools.

Berkey died in 1997.