Sturgis Motorcycle Hall Of Fame 2012 Inductees

It is the time of the year when Christine Paige Diers, Executive Director of the Sturgis Motorcycle Museum & Hall of Fame, announces this year’s inductees to both the Sturgis Hall Of Fame and the Freedom Fighters Hall of Fame. Below her press release.

The Sturgis Motorcycle Hall of Fame is designed to recognize individuals or groups who have made a long term positive impact on the motorcycle community. The Freedom Fighters Hall of Fame recognizes the commitment and sacrifices individuals across the nation, and world, have made to protect the rights of motorcyclists. For 2012, the Sturgis Motorcycle Museum & Hall of Fame will honor one Freedom Fighter and induct six into the Sturgis Hall of Fame.

Rodney Roberts – Freedom Fighters Hall of Fame – Rodney Roberts has spent countless hours fighting for motorcyclists rights since the late 1980s. In 1995, the federal helmet law was repealed, paving the way for states to repeal their individual helmet requirements. Rodney had been working in the state legislature to build relationships and educate lawmakers in preparation for the time when the federal law was repealed. In large part because of his efforts, the state of Arkansas became the first state to repeal its helmet law in 1997. But Rodney didn’t stop there – he continues to fight for motorcyclists rights in the Arkansas General Assembly any time a law impacting motorcyclists comes up.

Dave Barr – Dave Barr may not be the person you’d picture as an avid motorcyclist, but he certainly is that. In 1981, Dave lost both of his legs in a landmine explosion while serving in Angola. Since that time, Barr has become an inspiration to people facing physical challenges as well as those who are not. He’s ridden around the world, across Russia in the dead of the Siberian winter, and to the four farthest points of Australia. He’s written books, produced documentaries, earned two Guinness World Records and established Patriot Express, a foundation that supports Fischer House in its mission to assist military servicemen and their families during hospitalization and unexpected injury or illness.

Buzz Kanter – Buzz Kanter is perhaps best known as a publisher, having purchased the two-year-old American Iron Magazine in 1991. His company, TAM Communications, also publishes Motorcycle Bagger, American Iron Garage and RoadBike and has also published trade magazines for the motorcycle industry, American Iron Retailer and MotoSports Retailer. But Buzz’s contribution to the sport of motorcycling goes beyond what he prints and publishes. Buzz is truly an enthusiast and has a special passion for classic motorcycles and their history. Buzz road raced in the late 1970s and still competes in the MotoGiro-USA on old Ducati and Moto Guzzi singles. He participated in the inaugural Motorcycle Cannonball endurance ride in 2010 on his 1915 Harley and is currently preparing to ride in the second Cannonball on a 1929 Harley JDH.

Brian & Laura Klock – Brian & Laura Klock have impacted the motorcycling world both individually and as a couple. They own Klock Werks Kustom Cycles in Mitchell, South Dakota – a company they’ve grown to include over 350 Klock Werks Brand parts, including the award winning Flare Windshield designs. After building the only bagger to compete and win a Discovery Channel Biker Build-Off, Laura went on to pilot it at the Legendary Bonneville Salt Flats, setting her first National Land Speed Record in 2006. Since then, she’s been joined by both of her daughters, making them the first mother, daughter, daughter trio in land speed racing history to hold records at the same time. Brian made it a complete family affair setting his first record in 2011, the team’s 6th year racing on the salt flats. Brian & Laura are recognized builders and designers, working with their team at Klock Werks to build custom motorcycles and innovative parts. Most recently, Laura has co-founded “Helping With Horsepower™”, a charitable organization that designs volunteer programs that empower, encourage and raise funds for worthy charities.

Ed Kretz, Jr. – A talented competitive racer in every category of motorcycle racing he competed in including road racing, TT racing, dirt track racing and short track racing. Ed was an AMA Grand National Champion in the 1950s and 1960s. Kretz was born into a motorcycling family – his father was the most popular motorcycle racer of the 1930s and ‘40s – and owned a dealership. Ed worked for his father starting at a young age, and started racing in his teens. Ed was a top finisher in races all over the country. By 1955, Ed was 5th in the United States in total points in the Expert Class for TT racing. He continued to race until the early 1960s. Even after he ended his racing career, Ed continued his involvement in motorcycling and has been a great ambassador for the sport of motorcycle racing.

Steve Piehl (J.C. Pappy Hoel Outstanding Achievement Award) – In the early 1980s, Steve Piehl was a recent college graduate working in marketing for Harley-Davidson when he was asked to develop and organize a factory-sponsored rider organization.  It launched a few months later, in January 1983. In less than 30 years, that organization has become the largest riders group in the world – the Harley Owners Group (HOG) which currently has 900,000 members.  Steve was the first manager of HOG and set direction for membership, local chapters and events. During the course of his career at Harley-Davidson Steve has held a variety of roles, including leadership of the company’s media relations efforts, guiding the Event Marketing team and responsibility for H-D’s racing programs. In his current role as the Motor Company’s Director of Customer Experience, he continues to build HOG by strengthening the connection between members, their dealer and the company while encouraging them to enjoy the fun and camaraderie that only motorcycling can deliver.

Ron Stratman – Ron Stratman started riding at the age of 15 and hasn’t looked back since. Ron raced for over twenty years as and amateur and professional racer, sponsored and co-sponsored races and even sponsored other racers for a number of years. Ron founded the Sturgis Harley-Davidson which resided on Main Street in Sturgis. In the 1970s, Ron and his family started selling merchandise at races around the country. Eventually, he started selling shirts at Harley-Davidson dealerships and in 1983 became one of the first Harley-Davidson official licensees. He’s an artist who has designed some of the most iconic Sturgis imagery throughout the years. People who attend the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally might know Ron best as “The Buffalo Man.” Ron covered a motorcycle with a full buffalo hide and rode the first Buffalo Bike down Main Street in Sturgis in 1991.

The annual Sturgis Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Breakfast is scheduled on Wednesday, August 8 at 9:00 a.m. at The Lodge at Deadwood in Deadwood, SD. Breakfast tickets are available for a $35.00 donation, tables of eight for $300.00. Tickets can be purchased through the Museum at 605.347.2001 or on line at Sturgis Museum.

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18 Responses to “Sturgis Motorcycle Hall Of Fame 2012 Inductees”


  1. 1 Joe Mielke Feb 28th, 2012 at 9:09 am

    Congratulations Brian and Laura! You make us all very proud!.

    Congratulations also go out to the rest of 2012 inductees!

    From
    Team Klock Werks

  2. 2 Cris Sommer Simmons Feb 28th, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    I love seeing so many deserving people getting inducted. Many I have known for so many years and others are new friends. Congrats everyone!

  3. 3 Brad Osborne Feb 28th, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    Congratulations to a great group of dedicated people!

  4. 4 Rob Feb 28th, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    How many “Halls of Fame” are out there?

  5. 5 Jeff Nicklus Feb 28th, 2012 at 5:42 pm

    Congratulations to each of you!

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  6. 6 R.K.P. Feb 28th, 2012 at 6:09 pm

    Hall Of Fame? Just have a friend sponsoring you by filing out an application. Some deserve, some not at all. Only one Hall Of Fame (there are 5!) means something. Guess which one? 3 letters. Politics, politics.

  7. 7 Jezza Feb 29th, 2012 at 1:14 am

    Great news Brian and Laura, and of course the whole team at Klock Werks. You make all us true believers proud!

  8. 8 Mike Greenwald Feb 29th, 2012 at 7:55 am

    Recognition by the Sturgis Motorcycle Hall of Fame seemingly insists upon minimalizing actions and accomplishments of motorcyclists with various incarnations of hucksters, carpetbaggers and flimflam artists.

    Those deserving recognition are insulted forevermore by the inclusion of charlatans and grifters.

    The motorcycling public is scammed annually by this event.

    Take a long hard look at what has been accomplished and by whom.

    Do we really need to promote a false flag award to honor a dilution of respect?

  9. 9 sasha Feb 29th, 2012 at 9:20 am

    So many wonderful people being inducted! God bless you all! Congratulations! You are all so inspiring!

  10. 10 InDaHall Feb 29th, 2012 at 9:26 am

    It was time people in the know begin to express their opinion about this Sturgis Hall Of Fame. Very deserving people are in it. But these last years there is inclusion of friends of friends whose accomplishments in the industry as a whole are very minimal. The very good and deserving ones have such integrity that it doesn’t belong to their professional behavior to ask others to push them in it. It seems to me that Christine Paige Diers doesn’t know who is who in the industry and consequently accepts to nominate whoever is first to fill out an application. I hear that she is begging for applications! I must say that the Freedom Fighters are all deserving, but look at the list of these last years. We all know people much more deserving. There is complete dilution of merit at the Sturgis Hall Of Fame. Very sad.

  11. 11 Rogue Feb 29th, 2012 at 9:41 am

    I have questioned in the past how those nominated for the Sturgis Hall of Fame are finally decided upon.

    I do not believe I have ever received a good answer to that.

    I am not trying to be a Monday Morning Quarterback but do believe that conversation, comments and suggestion do help things get better.

    Being a member of the Freedom Fighter section (2005) I have been surprised by some of the people that received that award and have suggested that those who make the final decisions might consider contacting previous inductees to see if they had any comments and or information that was not supplied in the original application. Not that I am suggesting this years nominee is not a good choice.

    The same could apply to other categories. I am sure it is not an easy job making the decision who is finally inducted.

    I have been receiving e-mails from people questioning why someone they know did not get nominated. I am sorry I Do Not Have That Answer.

    I do know many of the people being inducted in 2012 and would like to congratulate them.

    What I am suggestion is that we support the Hall of Fame and continue to submit people we feel should be in it, but to also help the museum in making the decision by our continued input.

    We may not agree on all subjects but discussion and trying hard to improve how things are done is always good.

  12. 12 InDaHall Feb 29th, 2012 at 10:06 am

    The professional ass kissers of the industry know who they are and that they should not be in the company of the good ones of the Sturgis Hall Of Fame. Only the Hall Of Fame could have stopped this little game. Problem is that the museum directors know nothing about the true pros and honest people of the industry who have contributed and continue to contribute so much to our sport. So, to fill up the nominees list they look for applications. Of course, only the non deserving apply via a friend they help another way or the same way…If Rogue, a very deserving member of the Sturgis Hall Of Fame cant know what is the process to arrive to such non-deserving names, it says a lot. Sorry, Christine. It’s not a job for you. You should be fired.

  13. 13 Roger Feb 29th, 2012 at 10:10 am

    2 names in this list of inductees made me laugh.

  14. 14 VICTIM OF CARPET BAGGERS Feb 29th, 2012 at 11:37 am

    AMEN MIKE GREENWALD ~ SOOOO TRUE!!

  15. 15 Donny Feb 29th, 2012 at 11:39 am

    Carpet Baggers. Hee, hee, hee.

  16. 16 Gary Bang Feb 29th, 2012 at 9:13 pm

    Ron Stratman: They do not make them any more like Ron and I doubt that the future will be able to find some one like him. You know he may be a Saint.

    Who ever Nominated Ron Thanks Good Job and a Real Good Choice on your part.

    I love You Man Gary Bang

  17. 17 Wiz Mar 1st, 2012 at 6:19 am

    AH-HEM, COUGH,COUGH, HELLO!!! WHAT ABOUT ME, IT ISN’T FAIR! I’VE DONE MY TIME, I WANT MY SHARE! [Ya know that song, it’s playin’ right now on the radio as I’m writing this, go figure!] I been ridin’ , buildin’, fabricatin’, crashin’, writin’, breahin’, eatin’, sh*ttin’, murdersickles fer over 50 years now! Damn near everyone knows me in various ways, shapes, ‘n forms! Hell, even Eddie Trotta said ” WIZ, The Number #1 Biker Dude of the UNIVERSE!!” ‘Cmon, Jeffy, Ricky, Billy, Eddie, Jessey, Rougue, Charlie, Cyril, Larry [God Rest his Soul], Brian, Laura, ‘an all the rest of you smoes that have had the misfortune to cross paths with me in this current lifetime! Nominate ME, so I can turn it DOWN! YuK-YuK!!! Wiz

  18. 18 Mike Greenwald Mar 2nd, 2012 at 9:47 am

    InDaHall,

    Seemingly, the Sturgis Hall of Fame has a commercial appeal/requirement by the “board of directors”. Is there a “buy in” price? What’s a bucket of grease for these wheels cost?

    Mike

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