Wilkinson Elected to Top USBC Post

by Bob Johnson 0

Frank Wilkinson USBC convention048 2.jpgFrank Wilkinson of Staten Island, N.Y., has been elected president of the United States Bowling Congress by the USBC Board of Directors, and Cathy DeSocio of Wichita, Kan., will serve as vice president of USBC for the 2015-16 season.

Wilkinson, 28, has served as USBC vice president the last two seasons and will assume his new role on Aug. 1. He takes over for Andrew Cain of Phoenix, Ariz.,who is completing his third and final term as president. USBC presidents are limited to three one-year terms; Cain will continue to serve on the board as an athlete director.

“This is an exciting time for USBC and the bowling industry,” said Wilkinson, who will become the youngest president in USBC history. “I look forward to serving and working with our stakeholders as we continue toward achieving our goals of building a future for our sport for generations to come.”

Wilkinson, the owner of Rab’s Country Lanes, has been involved in the sport most of his life. He joined the USBC board as a Youth Committee representative in 2010 and currently serves as the Youth Committee chair. He was elected to the Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America board in 2014 as a USBC representative, and has been a director on the National Council of Youth Sports since 2012. He is a Youth Education Services Committee member for the New York State USBC, and also serves on the Staten Island USBC board.

Wilkinson has received many honors, including the Staten Island Chapter of the American Cancer Society Distinguished Community Service Award in 2012. In 2013, he received the New York State USBC Youth Leaders Bridging the Gap Award and the Staten Island Small Business of the Year award, presented by the City of New York. He recently was recognized as one of Staten Island’s “Top 20 Under 40” leaders in business by the Staten Island Economic Development Corporation.

DeSocio, who was the first female president of BPAA, also has been involved in the bowling business her entire life. She currently is president of JOMA Bowling Company, which operates seven centers in Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma, and also is vice president of the International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame.

She has received several honors for her work in the sport, including the Great Plains USBC Hall of Fame Pioneer Award for Exceptional Leadership, Continued Support and Distinguished Service to the Sport of Bowling in 2014, and the Wichita Business Journal Women in Business Award in 2013.

Bob Johnson

Bob Johnson has received more national writing awards than any other bowling writer — close to 70 over the course of his 40-year career. He began at age 16 as a staff writer and then assistant editor for the weekly Pacific Bowler newspaper in his native California, and within three years was writing feature stories for Bowlers Journal. He has written for the magazine ever since, except for a five-year span when he was hired as the founding editor of another magazine. He moved to Chicago in 2000 and spent 13 years in the Windy City, including five as Bowlers Journal’s Editor. In 1975, Johnson received the Robert E. Kennedy Award as California’s top undergraduate high school journalist. Five years earlier, on the lanes, he had shared the Bantam Division Doubles championship in the Orange County Junior Bowling Association Championships. Today, he continues to work full-time for Bowlers Journal as its Senior Editor, to write his popular “Strikes Me” column, and to edit Luby Publishing Inc.’s weekly business-to-business Cyber Report.

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