Slide Background
Slide Background
Slide Background
Slide Background
Slide Background
previous arrow
previous arrow
next arrow
next arrow

About The Latin American International Sports Hall of Fame

In the United States, there are Sports Halls of Fame that honor professional and amateur athletes in football, basketball, track, tennis, baseball and other sports. There are also ethnic halls of fame that recognize outstanding athletes from different groups including Italian, Jewish, Irish and blacks to name a few. But, there was not a single sports hall of fame that would recognize, honor and salute the outstanding accomplishments/achievements and contributions of our Latino/Hispanic Sports Heritage not only from the United States but also those who came to this country from Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Central and South America and from the vast talent from the Caribbean Islands. The Latin-American International Sports Hall of Fame/Salon de Ia Fama Latinoamericano del Deporte was organized in Laredo, Texas in 1974. At first it was to celebrate, honor and promote local and regional individuals who had excelled at their particular sport but soon it opened the doors to include National and International Professional Athletes. It also recognizes as Sportsman of the Year individuals who continue to preserve and enhance our Latino culture, values and educational opportunities for our youth and who contribute to the betterment of the City of Laredo and South Texas. There have been since its inception an equal recognition of women athletes inductees. It was important to find role models for our youth and the organizers wanted to include all ages, regardless of sex in their programs. The Latin Hall was also created to promote economic development and stimulate business activity in downtown Laredo when local businesses are contracted to provide services to our inductees, their families and guests who visit Laredo during the annual 3-day welcome reception, media luncheon and induction banquet celebration weekend. Through the years. (1975-2014), and with limited amount of funds the organization has, had the opportunity to help the youth of our community with scholarships and other youth activity fundraisers. Plans are to have a Latin Sports International Hall of Fame Museum (downtown) (soon) which will be a first for the United States and to provide clinics (free of charge) to instruct our youth in different sports.


The Latin American International Sports Hall of Fame was founded in 1975 to recognize individuals with good and proper standing in the community, high morals and values and who have excelled in sports and/or have contributed to the promotion of sports and goodwill in the Latino community.

Latin American International Sports Hall of Fame

47th Annual Induction Banquet


Los Angeles Dodgers
Founder D.R. Baseball Academy
Dominican Republic

Rafael Avila, involved with the Los Angeles Dodgers as a scout in Latin America since 1969, will join the Laredo Latin
American International Sports Hall of Fame this year. Avila, 72, a native Cuban, was promoted to fulltime Dodger scout in
1971, scouting South Florida. In 1972, he was scouting all Latin America, except Mexico. Avila, whose son, AI Avila, was
formerly an executive with the Florida Marlins and now assistant GM with the Detroit Tigers, moved to the Dominican
Republic in 1974. From '74 to 1986 Avila was Dodgers' scouting supervisor in Latin America .
Avila helped open the doors of U.S. pro baseball to hundreds of Latin American players. In 1986 he identified the site for
Campo Las Palmas and supervised the construction of the camp, which opened in 1987 as the National Academy of
Baseball at Campo Las Palmas. Avila was named a Dodgers vice president in 1988. Professor and author Alan Klein of
Northeastern University in Boston notes, "Until you watched him operate the Dodger Academy, you couldn't realize how
instrumental Ralph was in Dominican baseball. "He forged the Dodger presence into the elite academy it is. To a generation
of players and staff he was a consummate professional ; a superb evaluator and teacher, fair, tough, caring and a
devotee of Afro-Cuban music too. "A generation of Dominican players was better prepared for their baseball careers
having passed through his program ." Avila has been an amateur baseball instructor since the 1950s, working with
National Teams at the World Olympics level. He is also a member of the Dominican Republic Hall of Fame.