1995 – Pioneer
Helene Gran Salreno
First and lady are two words best used to describe Helene Gran Salreno to anyone in the bowling family. Helene joined the Bowling Proprietors Association of Ohio more than 37 years ago representing Gran Lanes, a family owned and operated 24 lanes bowling center in Youngstown, Ohio. Helene was the first and only female President of the Mahoning Valley BPA. After serving 20 years as President and only due to the sale of Gran Lanes, Helene stepped down and now serves as Executive Director for the group of proprietors.
Another first for Helen was being named to the Youngstown Area Bowling Council as a charter member, a position she still fills.
Gran Lanes was the first center in the Mahoning Valley to install bumper bowling system for junior bowlers and always had Saturday’s before 6pm reserved for their junior program.
Helene has devoted a great part of her life to many charities in the Youngstown area and promoted many fund-raising tournaments. Her work included Muscular Dystrophy Association, local March of Dimes, Easter Seal Society, Danny Thomas St. Jude and Women’s Commission for Children’s Concerts. Helene and her regular customers raised thousands of dollars for these and many other charities.
When the pilot for the Grand Prix Scholarship was introduced in the Mahoning Valley, Helene was elected to the board of directors and through her efforts, Gran Lanes has raised over $10,000 every year for the three years the Foundation has been in existence. Nine graduating seniors received scholarships in the first three years and Helen takes great pride in leading BPAO in the most money raised and paid out.
Helene has been a member of the Youngstown WBA since 1957 and has attended every general meeting and workshop the association has hosted. She was elected to the Youngstown WBA Hall of Fame in 1985, for Meritorious Service. In 1981 she received Social Service Award presented by Eastern orthodox Men’s Society for Outstanding Service and Contribution to the Youngstown area and in 1988 was the recipient of the BPOA Achievement Award for Outstanding Personal Effort toward Promotion of Bowling in Ohio.
Helene has devoted her life to bowling, serving the community and her customers. She has always considered it a privilege to serve the Youngstown area in both business and civic duties. And it is through these and many other contributions that Helene Gran Salreno has justly earned the distinction of being honored as an outstanding Pioneer to our game of bowling in Ohio.