Athletic Hall of Fame


Formally established in 2010, the Stratford Athletic Hall of Fame strives to maintain the rich heritage and tradition of the successful athletic programs of Stratford Academy. It serves as a means of recognizing, preserving and honoring the athletes, coaches, teams and individuals who have made significant contributions to the school’s athletic programs. The Hall of Fame honors the contributions and accomplishments of these individuals and teams who are worthy of recognition and serve as examples for others to emulate.

On September 24, 2021, Stratford Academy inducted its 11th Athletic Hall of Fame class. The honorees are: Rusty Hilburn '79 (athlete), Whitney Christie Mantooth '00 (athlete), and Charlie Cantrell (supporter). 

As a student-athlete, Hilburn was a three-year starter and letterman in football, basketball, and baseball from 1977 to 1979. He played both offense and defense on the football team. On the basketball court, he is one of Stratford's 1,000+ career points earners and was recognized on the All-State team in 1979. Rusty was also named to the 1979 All-State baseball team. Following graduation from Stratford, Rusty attended the University of Georgia and graduated in 1983 with a degree from the Terry College of Business. He started his career in the insurance business 36 years ago, and today he is a partner with Tidwell & Hilburn Insurance. Rusty is a past Georgia chairman of SecureRisk and currently serves as a board member for the four-state organization. He and his wife, Laurie, live in Macon and are the parents to five children.  

Mantooth was a trailblazer for females on the youth golf circuit. She began playing golf competitively when she was seven years old and competed in countless events for the  Southeastern Junior Tour, American Junior Tour, Georgia State Golf Association, and United States Golf Association every season for more than 10 years. In eighth grade, Whitney began playing for the Stratford golf team and was a five-year letterman. During her junior year, the golf team won the state championship title, and she won the state low medalist honor in co-ed combined competition. After graduation from Stratford, Whitney played for the University of Georgia women's golf team. In 2001, the team won the SEC championship and NCAA championship. In 2004, she graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Child and Family Development and began working as a child development specialist with the Early Head Start program. Today, Whitney lives in Watkinsville, Georgia, with her husband, Jon, and their two daughters.

Charlie Cantrell has been a supporter of Stratford athletics since his oldest child enrolled at Stratford in the late 1980s. As the parent of four Stratford Eaglette athletes, he and his wife, Tammy, spent countless hours at soccer, basketball, softball, track, and cheerleading events until their youngest graduated in 2007. Today, he is the grandparent of seven Stratford students. Charlie and his business, Five Star Automotive, have been one of the school's largest supporters of the annual Booster Club Jeep raffle event for the last 19 years. He has also provided the school with lead gifts for the Cantrell Lower School capital campaign, the Cantrell Scholarship, the Cantrell Football Stadium, and the naming of the Jett Science Center.

To nominate an individual or team for the Hall of Fame, please click the Nominate an Athlete button below. Nominations are due by February 15th of each induction year.

Because we were unable to have our 2020 Stratford Athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony last school year, the Stratford Athletic Hall of Fame Committee has decided not to induct a 2020 class. The induction ceremony is a special time for inductees and their families as well as our school community. Our committee felt that adding another class at this time would “crowd the field” and lessen the experience for all inductees. The Stratford Athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony for our 2021 class will be held on Friday, Sept 24, 2021. 

2020 will not count against any nominee in terms of how many years they are eligible to be on the consideration list. The HOF bylaws state that "following initial nomination, a candidate shall remain eligible for induction for the following 4 years". All HOF nominations will stay under consideration for a full five years with 2020 not counting as one of those years.

Athletic Hall of Fame Previous Inductees

Russell Henley '07 HOF Jersey Retirement and Gaddy Gym Dedication

Congratulations to our 2021 inductees
who were recognized at a ceremony
on September 24, 2021.

Rusty Hilburn '79
Whitney Christie Mantooth '00
Charlie Cantrell

Stratford Retired Jerseys

Year of

Lee BarfieldBasketball1964
Betsy LonginottiBasketball1970
Anna NewtonBasketball1970
David Jones Basketball 1970
Joey ClaxtonBasketball1972
Bruce Bishop Football1973
Jaime KaplanTennis1979
Peter PersonsGolf1981
John HilburnBasketball1985
Jay BerknerBaseball1986
Brett HendleyBaseball1986
Zane VanceBasketball1987
Jay CranfordBaseball1989
Camille LoweBasketball1989
Miriam LoweBasketball1989
Joey CranfordFootball, Basketball, Baseball1994
Ryan DehnadTrack1994
Jason RussellSoccer 1995
William Wilkins Football1995
LeKevin Smith Football, Track 2001
Kate Appleton Soccer 2003
Russell HenleyGolf2007