The Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame recently announced nine inductees for 2021.

The Hall of Fame is composed of illustrious Rhode Islanders, from Roger Williams and the chief sachems of the Narragansett and the Wampanoag tribes to those of the present day. The Hall was created in 1965 to honor “any individual who has brought credit to Rhode Island, brought Rhode Island into prominence, and contributed to the history and heritage of the state.”

Inductees, according to board of trustees President Patrick Conley, must have been born in Rhode Island, lived, studied or worked in Rhode Island for a significant time, or made his or her reputation here.

The 56th induction ceremony will take place on Oct. 23 at the Crowne Plaza in Warwick. A social hour begins at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner, entertainment and the induction ceremony at 6:15.

The following are the inductees:

Charles Butler: Pioneering Black athlete who starred on several local integrated amateur and semi-professional championship baseball teams in the late 1940s.

Timothy “Tim” Gray: A national award-winning documentary film director, producer and writer, especially for PBS, and founder of the prestigious World War II Foundation.

James H. Leach: Major real estate developer and chairman of numerous public and private boards, including the Rhode Island PBS Foundation.

William P. McCormick: U.S. Ambassador to New Zealand, co-founder of the 93-restaurant chain McCormick & Schmick’s, humanitarian and philanthropist.

John M. Murphy Sr.: Leader of the Home Loan Investment Bank, financier, public official, civic leader, philanthropist and humanitarian.

Elizabeth Morancy: Strong advocate for social change and justice, first as a religious sister, then as a state representative and finally as a director of several important humanitarian organizations.

Dr. William Oh: Nationally prominent pioneer and researcher in the field of neonatal medicine, teacher and author of 443 peer-reviewed studies in pediatrics, most in his specialty — neonatal intensive care.

William “Bill” Reynolds: Prolific columnist and sports writer for the Providence Journal, star athlete and author of several highly regarded books on local sports, especially basketball.

Louis Yip: Major Blackstone Valley real estate developer, prominent restaurateur, humanitarian and philanthropist.

Tickets ($85 donation to the Heritage Hall of Fame) may be ordered online at or by calling 401-273-1787 and must be purchased in advance by Oct. 15.

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