Curve owners Bob & Joan Lozinak selected to Blair County Sports Hall of Fame
CURVE, Pa. - Altoona Curve owners Bob and Joan Lozinak have been selected for induction to the Blair County Sports Hall of Fame, it was announced today.
The Lozinaks are among a list that includes four other individuals and two teams that will be enshrined as the Class of 2016. The induction ceremony is scheduled to be held on Saturday, April 23 at the Blair County Convention Center in Altoona.
The couple, who first championed the idea of a minor league team in Altoona in the late 1970s, saw that dream become a reality in 1999, when the Curve (AA, Pirates) debuted in April of that year. Natives of Altoona, the Lozinaks have owned the club for 10 of its 17 seasons (1999-2001 and 2009-present). Prior to founding the Curve, Bob and Joan owned and operated the Albuquerque Dukes (AAA, Dodgers) from 1979-2001. In between their stints with the Curve, they owned the West Tenn Diamond Jaxx (AA, Cubs & Mariners) in Jackson, Tenn. from 2003-2008.
"We're extremely humbled with this honor from the Blair County Sports Hall of Fame," said Bob Lozinak. "We're grateful for the terrific support from the community and are pleased that the idea of minor league baseball with fun, affordable, family entertainment has taken root in Altoona. We look forward to many more years of Altoona Curve Baseball here in Blair County."
The couple, who reside in Churchville, Md., have made their baseball interests a true family affair. Their three sons, Mike, David, and Steve, all play an active role in the operation of the Curve and their grandson, Tim, is a member of the team's front office staff. When not at Peoples Natural Gas Field in Altoona, you're likely to find the couple attending activities of their six grandchildren - including the travel-league baseball games of Matt and Will.
"It's such a blessing to be able to operate the club as a family," said Joan Lozinak. "From the days when Mike, David, and Steve helped our staff in Albuquerque to our grandson Tim's involvement in Altoona, we count ourselves fortunate to do this together. Several other family members have helped us over the years as front office staff or on game days, including my sister, Mary (Lamb), and brother, Joe (Bettwy). It's truly special."
The Lozinaks are also quick to point out the long-time assistance of part owner, Sal Baglieri, who was the Curve's first general manager. Baglieri has served as a senior advisor to all of the family's baseball interests. He continues in that capacity with the Curve to this day.
For more information on the Blair County Sports Hall of Fame, tickets to April's Hall of Fame events, and details about the 2016 induction class, please visit the hall's website at www.blaircountysportshof.com.