Ray Rinaldi’s long association with boxing dates back to 1954 during his days in the Army when he became the head coach and trainer of the division boxing team in Germany. His boxers traveled throughout the European Theater of Operation and amassed a winning record.
An amateur boxer as a youth (28 wins and 2 losses), Rinaldi’s professional career was thwarted when he received a severe head injury after being struck by a car. This setback was only temporary as Rinaldi has been actively involved in boxing for over 50 years as an elite coach and trainer with the Golden Gloves Association of America, the country’s foremost organization for amateur boxing.
One of Rinaldi’s most important local contributions has been with the North Area Athletic Club, an educational and training facility for a diverse range of kids. Many urban youths who frequent the Pond Street club have limitless energy and are encouraged to use their free time to channel their frustrations in a positive direction. The facility boasts of a champion classes training venue that has been used by hundreds of youngsters under Rinaldi’s direction. Besides boxing, the club also offers drug and alcohol counseling, teen issues counseling, conflict resolution counseling and a GED program.
Rinaldi has received many awards for his dedication to young people. Those include The Post Standard Achievement Award, The Melvin Jones Fellowship Award, Man of the Year from the Knights of Columbus and Lion of the Year from the North Syracuse Lions Club.
1994: Began running the Golden Gloves youth program in Syracuse
1997: Received The Post Standard Achievement Award for contributions to the community
2004: Inducted into the Northside Hall of Fame.