Class of 2011
Sport : Boxing :
Pernell “Sweet Pea” Whitaker, born and raised in Norfolk, VA, started his amateur boxing career at the age of 9. He had 214 amateur fights, winning 201, and 91 of them by knock out. He was the lightweight silver medalist at the 1982 World Championships, followed by the Gold Medal at the 1983 PAN American Games and crowning his amateur career with a Gold medal at the 1984 Olympics. During his career as a professional fighter (1984-2001), Whitaker became the World Champion in four different weight divisions. In 1989, Ring Magazine recognized him as Fighter of the Year and in 2002, ranked him at number 10 in their list of ‘The 100 greatest fighters of the past 80 years’. In 2006, he was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame with a professional record of 41-3-1 with 17 knock-outs. Whitaker is the former WBA World Light Weight Middleweight Champion, WBC World Welterweight Champion, the IBF World Lightweight Champion, the WBC World Lightweight Champion, the WBA World Lightweight Champion, the IBF World Lightweight Champion, the NABF Light Weight Champion and is respectfully recognized as “pound for pound” the greatest boxer ever.