Top of the morning, Jan. 9, 2014

Major league baseball announced another Hall of Fame class on Wednesday. Seems appropriate for news on some of our own heavy hitters.

— If you bump into Lou Henson on Friday, wish him happy birthday. The legendary coach, who will turn 82, is back in town and lookin' good. He'll spend his big day like any other, swimming in the morning, playing bridge in the afternoon and dining with family at night.

Look for our salute on IlliniHQ.com on Friday.

— The Champaign Urbana Schools Foundation doesn't mess around with its alumni awards. The list of honorees — see below — is big-time. On April 12, the CUSF will honor its latest public school award-winners in three categories. The deadline to submit nominations is Jan. 31. Visit CUSF's website or call 217-398-2873 to start the process.

— Had the pleasure of meeting with leaders of the Champaign League of Women Voters and NAACP on Wednesday. We're working with both groups to put on debates involving congressional, legislative and county board candidates ahead of the March 18 primary. We'll announce dates in these pages and online soon.

CUSF'S Recognized Distinguished Alumni

WINNER and HIGH SCHOOL

CBS journalist Bill Geist: Champaign (1963)

U.S. Representative Tim Johnson: Urbana (1964)

Trumpeter Cecil Bridgewater: Champaign (1960)

Architect/missionary Christopher A. Moyer: Urbana (1957)

Olympian Bonnie Blair: Centennial (1982)

Journalist Roger Ebert: Urbana (1960)

Admiral Archie Clemins: Urbana (1961)

Judge Frederick S. Green: Urbana (1941)

Journalist Landon C. Parvin: Central (1966)

Humanitarian Sabina M. Alkire: Central (1986)

Olympian Nancy Thies Marshall: Urbana (1975)

Author David Foster Wallace: Urbana (1980)

Corporate leader Stephen Van Arsdell: Urbana (1968)

Civic leader Scott Anderson: Central (1977)

Admiral James B. Busey IV: Urbana (1952)

Educator Emily Stipes Watts: Champaign (1954)

Lawyer J. Steven Beckett: Urbana (1966)

Artist/sculptor John David Mooney: Champaign (1959)

Recognized Local Business Community Impact

Kirby & Turner Masonry, Marty Kirby: Urbana (1974)

Spherion, Inc., Cynthia J. Nelson Somers: Central (1986)

Aladdin Electric, Mike Armstrong: Urbana (1964) and Troy Armstrong: Urbana (1986)

Campus Sportswear, Tom Coleman: Centennial (1979)

Recognized Local Hero

Thomas Brown: Urbana (1970)

Carol Scharlau: Urbana (1960)

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