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.

Ann Sommerness Simms

Swimming & Diving

Inducted: 2007

The first female swimmer at Gustavus to participate in the NCAA championships three consecutive years, Ann Sommerness Simms was one of the premier backstrokers in small college swimming from 1988 to 1991. Simms burst onto the scene in 1989 when she finished third in the 100-yard backstroke at the MIAC championships and went on to post a 16th-place finish at the NCAA championships, earning honorable mention All-America honors. She would later become the first Gustavus simmer to automatically qualify for the NCAA championships when she met the "A" standard in the 100 backstroke in 1991. She finished 18th in the 200 backstroke and 19th in the 100 backstroke, setting school records in each event at the 1991 NCAA championships. At the conference level, Simms was a seven-time all-conference performer, with a first-place finish in the 100 backstroke in 1990. She set four school records in her three years with the Gustavus swimming program, including the 100 freestyle (:56.45), the 100 backstroke (1:02.38), the 200 backstroke (2:15.20), and the 200 individual medley (2:16.37). Her school record in the 100 backstroke stood for 10 years before being broken in 2001.

After graduating with a major in elementary education, Simms was a kindergarten teacher in the Prior Lake/Savage School District until 1997. Since then, she has been a stay-at-home mom as her daughter Michelle was born that same year. Ann lives in Inver Grove Heights, Minn., with her husband, Daniel, and their children, Michelle, Julia, and Thomas.