The Athletic Hall of Fame has set criteria for admission as a contributor:
“A candidate will be considered for entrance as a contributor if that individual has helped
to develop and foster growth of athletics in Johnson City.”
To say that Tom Jablonowski was a contributor is a gross understatement of the impact he had on the Johnson City athletic program and school district as a whole.
“Mr. J” graduated from Johnson City in 1957, and luckily for this district, he found his way back to his home and joined the JC School Board in 1978. He would go on to serve on the board for over 20 years. As former Superintendent Larry Rowe once stated, “Tom is philosophically committed to the school system, its children and its staff.” It was simply in Mr. Jablonowski’s nature to help his community and its youth. As the former director of Broome County’s Office of Consumer Affairs, Tom made it his mission to protect the people from scam artists and untrustworthy businesses. This approach to public service and commitment to assisting others served him well in his role as our school board’s President. His protection of Johnson City’s students and educational mission provided countless young people with the necessary resources to achieve success.
Always giving of his time, Mr. Jablonowski is fondly remembered for his presence at Johnson City home football games. He ran the Wildcat concession stand for decades, and his generosity extended to everyone. As former Union-Endicott coach Fran Angeline attested, “He always made sure the visiting coaches got something to eat and drink. And he didn’t have someone deliver it; he’d always bring it himself. That didn’t happen at other schools.” In recognition of the countless hours he devoted to literally and figuratively serving the patrons of Johnson City football, the concession stand he ran for so many years was dedicated in his honor shortly after his death in 2000.
The passing of Mr. Jablonowski left a void in the hearts of this community. As stated in one of the two articles devoted to honoring his memory, “The children of Johnson City, their parents and teachers lost a champion.” The Johnson City Athletic Hall of Fame is proud to welcome one of this community’s greatest servants and role models, Thomas Jablonowski, JCHS Class of 1957.