Athletic Hall of Fame

The Gustavus Adolphus College Hall of Fame was established in 1978 at which time 19 "Charter Members" were inducted either as coaches or as athletes. As of the fall of 2022, 348 individuals (321 athletes, 16 coaches and 11 benefactors) have been elected to the Hall of Fame.

The former Hall of Fame room on the second floor of the Lund Center was originally partially endowed by the families of both Dwight Holcombe's (the only father/son combination holding membership in the Hall). The hardwood plaque upon which the individual plates are permanently displayed, now in the Hall of Champions, was donated by the family of former football coach and Hall of Fame member Jocko Nelson, who passed away in 1978.

Raymond Sponberg

Football and Gymnastics

Inducted: 1983

Raymond H. Sponberg '37 lettered three years in football and one year in gymnastics at Gustavus. The 1935 team shared the championship with St. Olaf & St. Johns. The 1936 team won the championship outright and was undefeated and unscored on in its five MIAC games. Ray was named All MIAC guard in 1936. He was in the original group of athletes who started hockey in 1935-36; the sport had club status and no letters were awarded, George Myrum appointed him asst. football coach in 1937- 38 and the team was MIAC champs both years.
He was named acting athletic director following Myrum's death and in 1939 served as asst. for John Roning. He was responsible for solicitation of pledges for the fieldhouse and secured the first large gift which started the drive. During his years on the athletic staff he also served as a field representatfve for Gustavus and started the news bureau at the college in 1937. Ray joined the sales staff at Hormel's in 1940 and then served as a Captain in the U.S.A.F. during WWII (1941-46). He was an instructor at OCS Miami 1942-43, and then served as Training Officer Ferrying Command 1943-46 in Dallas and Nashville. In April 1946 he joined the L.O. Swanson Agency of National Life. He qualified for the Million Dollar Round Table his first year and is currently a Life and Qualified Member. He received his CLU designation in 1946 and LUTC designation in 1957.
He currently is MDRT Membership Relations chairman and has held offices in the local , state and national associations. Ray and his wife Fiorence have four children - Michael '65, Miriam '67, Elaine 72, and Ann Kay '83, and live in rural North Mankato.