William Stephens will be inducted as a distinguished athlete and coach. The Taylor native lettered in football and track all four of his high school years at Taylor Center and all four years at Olivet College. For more than 30 years, Stephens taught science at Taylor Center (1965 to 1966 and 1969 to 1972) and Harry S. Truman High School (1973 to 1997). As a coach, he developed a track and field program that eventually became a Downriver powerhouse. From 1987 to 1991, Truman won the Tri-River League track championship. In 1987 and 1991, the team won The Herald newspapers track meet.
In 1991, the Cougars also placed third in the state meet. Stephens won seven coach-of-the-year awards. His teams accumulated 104 victories and had numerous All-League, All-Area and All-State athletes. Stephens also coached football from 1965 to 1997 at the junior varsity and then varsity levels. He was selected assistant coach of the year by the Michigan High School Football Coaches Association. Now retired, Stephens and his wife, Maryann (a retired Taylor teacher) live in Gaylord.