Al Lightner has been a longtime sports figure in the Salem area as a player, coach, official and journalist. His Salem career began in 1940 as a member of the Salem Senators baseball team. He officiated high school and college games for 30 years and was ranked the No. 1 major college basketball official on the West Coast for 20 years. Lightner also was sports editor of the Oregon Statesman for 34 years. He has already been inducted into three halls of fame: the NAIA District 2 Hall of Fame (1976); the Stockton (Cali) Athletic Hall of Fame (1982); and the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame (1987).