After serving in the Brainerd School District for 35 years, the name of Lance Hanfler, junior high activities director, will be present for many years to come.
Hanfler, who's retiring this year, was honored Monday when the Brainerd School Board proclaimed the football field at Forestview Middle School in Baxter will be named after him.
Hanfler, 56, joined the school district in 1968 as a Franklin Junior High art teacher and basketball coach. In 1987, he became the school's middle level athletics director.
School board Chair Randy Klinger thanked Hanfler for his years of service.
Brainerd Superintendent Jerry Walseth said in an interview that Hanfler has nurtured the entire middle level program. He said the successes people see with the Brainerd Warrior athletics teams goes to the structure of the program, which begins with Hanfler.
"He does a lot of behind the scenes," said Walseth. "It is great to have a facility named after someone who is heavily involved in their passion.
"This is a wonderful gift of naming it after Lance. He breathes kids. He has a huge job to do and he always keeps the important things in mind, the kids."
Walseth said in late February, he received a letter from Carol Munns, the Mississippi Horizons principal, asking about the possibility of naming the football field after Hanfler.
"When I read the letter I thought it was a great idea," said Walseth. "It was an opportunity that made a great deal of sense to what he brought to the community."
Munns said the idea came to her because he has been so dedicated over the years and has been a major advocate for junior high activities.
"It was the right thing to do," said Munns.
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