St. Francis Inducts Five Into Athletic Hall of Fame
Five outstanding former student-athletes were inducted into the St. Francis College Hall of Fame on Saturday, January 21st at the Brooklyn Heights campus: Ron Arnold (06’, Men’s Basketball), Shelia M. Pickard (79, Women’s Swimming), Mark Ferro (83’, Men’s Swimming & Water Polo), Gary Gooden (97’, Men’s Soccer, Track & Field), and Marie McGoldrick-Raico (’94, Women’s Volleyball & Softball).
One of the most versatile players ever to take the court at Remsen Street, Ron Arnold was the 1990-1991 Northeast Conference Newcomer of the Year and a Second Team All-Conference pick. A Rice High School graduate, he came to Brooklyn Heights after being named the New York Newsday Manhattan Borough Player of the Year in 1987-1988 and 1988-1989.
Ron is a member of the Terriers 1,000 Point Club and once recorded a then NCAA record with 11 steals in a game. He led the Terriers in scoring in each of his first two years and tied with Lester James as a junior despite playing only 17 games due to an injury. As a sophomore, he averaged 18.4 points per game, 6.0 rebounds, and 2.0 steals per game. That season, he scored 37 points against Vermont. As a junior, he enjoyed memorable games with 30 points against Seton Hall in November of 1991 and ripped down 14 rebounds against LIU on January 7th, 1992.
Sheila Pickard started swimming in the 2nd grade with the St. Sebastian’s Dolphinettes in Woodside, Queens. Most nights, her parents would pile her sister and a bunch of fellow Dolphinettes into their station wagon and drive them to swim practice at Bushwick High School. A few years later, St. Sebastian’s built its own parish center swimming pool which resulted in many good swimmers and several CYO championships for St. Sebastian’s. Fast-forward several years, Shelia followed in her brothers’ footsteps to St. Francis College.
When Shelia was not swimming she was working towards her Accounting degree, playing intramural sports and hanging out with her fellow Alpha Kappa Psi Fraternity brothers. After graduation, she worked as an auditor and again followed her brothers’ and became a CPA. For the past 30 years, she has enjoyed working at The New York Times Newspaper in various financial and systems roles that have allowed her to travel all over the United States and even live in Paris for a while.
After graduating in 1979, Mark Ferro, a Bishop Ford Athletic Hall of Famer distinguished himself at a Terrier as a member of its outstanding Water Polo Team. Mark received various honors as a student-athlete. For three years, he earned All Mid-Atlantic Water Polo Team honors and was selected to the All Eastern First Team in 1982. Mark also swam for St. Francis College, breaking the 800 freestyle relay in 1980. In 1983, Mark graduated from St. Francis College with a B.S. in Business Management and started his business career at Pan Am. The following year, he began his long and illustrious career at Oppenheimer Funds. Mark has worked as a customer service representative, regional sales manager, telephone sales manager, key account representative, and presently serves as Senior Vice President and Division Manager, a position he has held since 2001. Along his journey at Oppenheimer, he received Series 6, 7 and 24 certifications and is also a Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor.
As a Track athlete, Gary Gooden broke several records during his tenure at St. Francis. He came in 3rd in the 55m hurdles at the Intercollegiate Association of Amateur Athletes of America, and was named to the NEC All-Academic Team. He still currently holds the Northeast Conference (NEC) and St. Francis College school record for the 110m & 55m hurdles (13.99 seconds and 7.39 seconds respectively).
As a Soccer athlete, Gary recorded 277 career saves, good for 4th all-time; 115 saves in 1995, fifth all-time in single season saves; 15th in single season goals against average (1.41 in 1996) and 11th all-time in single season saves percentage (.816% in 1996) Gary was a member of the Northeast Conference Championship team for two consecutive seasons (1995-96 and 1996-97). He was named the NEC’s Most Valuable Player for the 1995-96 season and a member of the All-Academic team. After leaving St. Francis, Gary made the 110m hurdles finals at the 1996 Olympic trials in Jamaica. He was also invited as a goalkeeper to the Jamaican National Team in 1998. Gary continued his career in Jamaica teaching mathematics at Camperdown High (1996-2006) and coaching hurdles and goalkeepers. From 2006-2009 he taught Algebra 1 and Geometry at Berkeley High in South Carolina.
Marie McGoldrick-Raico was born and raised in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. Some highlights to Marie’s career at St. Francis include being the starting setter in her Freshman Volleyball season, a season that saw her team yield 20 wins and only 7 losses. She had a very successful Volleyball career and captained her team in her Senior Season. Her softball career allowed her to play nearly every position on the field. A true utility player and team player, Marie started her career at third base and would see time in the outfield and as catcher. During her sophomore season, she led her team in batting with a .417 average. She finished that season batting 25th in the nation, while her team made it to the Semi-finals of the Northeast Conference Tournament. Marie is most proud of her athletic accomplishments, but she feels completely blessed to have attended St. Francis College and be nurtured in the Franciscan way by many wonderful individuals.
Attached Photo: Gary Gooden ’97 (soccer/t&f); Mark Ferro ’83 (wp/swim); Marie McGoldrick-Raico ’94 (softball/volleyball); Shelia Pickard ’79 (swim); Ron Arnold ’06 (basketball)