"Traf" a Hall of Famer

The Rhode Island Interscholastic League announced it will induct Michael A. Traficante into the Athletic Hall of Fame.

Former Cranston Mayor and current School Committee Member Michael A. Traficante will be inducted into the Rhode Island Interscholastic League Athletic Hall of Fame next month.

"Mr. Traficante's success and accomplishments continue the tradition of the Rhode Island Interscholastic League honoring exceptional people," said Thomas Mezzanore, executive director of the RIIL.

For years, Traficante has been deeply involved with the lives of not just young athletes, but all of Cranston's youth. He's been a teacher, coach, mentor and community leader. He serves on the board of directors for the Cranston Area Career and Technical Academy. His name graces plaques on countless fields and parks where the city's young athletes play and compete. 

"I am sincerely and deeply honored for the privilege of being recognized among Rhode Island’s finest interscholastic community,” Traficante said in a release.  “Youth and high school athletics, in my humble opinion, is one of the few institutions that instill in our young people the importance of good character, a competitive attitude, and respect for fair play. Our youth learn life lessons on the athletic field that are just as important as those they learn in the classroom.”  

Known by most as "Traf," Traficante's name is known in most Cranston households. 

His career started 40-years ago as a math teacher, and football and wrestling coach, eventually becoming the assistant principal at Cranston High School East. 

He served on the City Council for six years before being elected Mayor in 1985. He held the post for 14 years and holds the record for the longest tenure of any Cranston mayor.

Traf's other legacy is at Cranston East, where his record as a coach is gilded with championships. As assistant coach of the Thunderbolts football team in 1965, his team won the Class A Large Division title. The wrestling team captured the state and New England titles that same year. In 1968, he became head wrestling coach and his wrestlers won the state title and finished second in New England. 

A few years later, Traficante became head football coach. He won division titles in 1972 and 1974 and the state championship in 1975. He also became an assistant wrestling coach at Bishop Hendricken, where he led the Hawks to a state championship.

Traficante will be feted on May 11 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Warwick at 7 p.m.

Foxeyroxie15 April 30, 2011 at 05:43 PM
Joe, well said. Traf has done a wonderful job with the youth of this city and deserves the honor for the time and effort he put in coaching the sports teams. It is long past the time for Traf to hang up his political hat and call it a day.
Rob T April 30, 2011 at 05:51 PM
Can you imagine? Traficante has been involved with the youth of Cranston for almost 40 years as a teacher, coach, administrator and mayor. He has probably dealt with, and come into contact with, thousands of students and student athletes in Cranston. Some of those go on to work for the city. Conspiracy? LOL Get a clue Golden. What are the chances, right? And Joe... what was Traf convicted of? If you say he was the center of many controversies does that mean he was involved in illegal activities? Because I don't remember him being charged with anything... maybe he was, but if he wasn't then we should follow the Constitution in believing that people are assumed innocent until proven guilty. And why accuse him and then blame the wisdom of our citizens? I believe he was Mayor for 14 years, he must have done somethings right. Just my two cents. And don't forget... next election, everyone out!!! No idea who to put in, but everyone out!!! LOL
Joe Richer April 30, 2011 at 07:52 PM
I've not accused a soul of anything illegal. Our schools cost us quite a bit of money...and those costs increase relentlessly above the cost of inflation. School performance has improved very slightly in the past couple of years but the performance arrow is still well below where it needs to be with no substantive plan for real improvement that I have access to. Traf must be accountable for all that is wrong as well as that which is right.
Golden April 30, 2011 at 10:38 PM
Traf was charged with taking a $115,000.00 campaign funds for his own personal use : ) I guess it was spending $$$$$$$$$$ whatever. And yes time for a change, he has been invovled to long, the old boy network needs to go away. He placed many of his students in City positions because he could,when maybe the man with family that applied never had a chance : ( On another note gasoline is $4.05 a gallon nice huh wrong : ( soon we will all be bankrupt,while the pigs get fatter..............
Joseph Agresti May 01, 2011 at 02:48 PM
will anyone here run against him in 2012?
Golden May 01, 2011 at 05:25 PM
Joe A. I understand many people have "expressed"an interest in seeking a seat whether it be for council,school committee,wherever,hopefully we get a few "good" ones that will work for our interest, the taxpayers. The BIG ? is who will seek the mayoral seat for the democrats ? Depending on what happems with the tax increase will determine how strong the candidate needs to be........the present council we have now is very mixed up : (
Foxeyroxie15 May 01, 2011 at 07:28 PM
@Rob - Traf was a teacher and coach at East when I started there in 1963. He's certainly worthy of the award for working with the youth of the city. 14 Years as Mayor????? City Council???? Non-partisan School Committee???? Time to hang it up. Another reason for term limitations. DiPrete was a popular mayor, too, and look how he ended up. Yet another reason for this State to eliminate the Master lever in the voting booth. Vote for the person, not the party. It will be interesting to see who brings what to the table.
Golden May 02, 2011 at 09:41 AM
Rob T May 02, 2011 at 02:37 PM
Rhodegirl, Thank you. That was my only point. He deserves this award and that's what the article was meant for. I questioned Goldens timing and attempt to bring up other issues so she could get out her own agenda. There are plenty of other ways she could have done it, but she felt the need to attach her political opinions to something that has nothing to do with the award and his years of dedication to students and student athletes. Then again, she's never happy because I can remember asking her which mayor was the last one she liked and she didn't like anyone! LOL All she knows is... everyone out! Thank you Rhodegirl for separating the two.
Golden May 02, 2011 at 05:58 PM
I will write what I want when I want. I have been here my entire life and know the city well, how bout you?
Foxeyroxie15 May 02, 2011 at 07:16 PM
Not a political forum - I apologize for even bringing anything political to this discussion. That is for another time and place. This is neither.
Golden May 02, 2011 at 11:38 PM
Rob T. just wants us taxpayers to continue to upgrade the public schools because his children attend them! Well I am NOT paying more taxes because the school dept WANTS it,to bad. Send them to private school...........and as I said I have lived here my entire life can u say the same?
Cranston Resident May 03, 2011 at 12:14 AM
If Golden is a product of the Cranston school system, she is exemplary of the need for considerable additional spending on Cranston education.
Golden May 03, 2011 at 12:33 AM
Foxeyroxie15 May 03, 2011 at 04:30 AM
I went back through the comments. I don't see any mention of anyone wanting to upgrade the schools, plow the streets, taxes, unions or any other medium. I think you are on the wrong page. Yes, all of us know you have lived here your entire life - you've made that clear ad nauseaum. I have too and I'm sure I'm older than you. I don't know what that has to do with any subject on these boards. Of course, I know I'll get the usual LOL when you have no argument. It's getting old. LMAO.....
Rob T May 03, 2011 at 11:06 AM
Golden, Not surprised by you last comment. Shame on me for wanting a quality education for my children. "Well I am NOT paying more taxes because the school dept WANTS it, to bad"... re-read that statement you wrote a few times and maybe you'll realize how idiotic it sounds. We all understand, you're selfish. You don't have any children in the public schools so you don't believe it's worth spending money on, we all get that. You need the police and fire so you're okay with spending money on that, we get that too. For the last time, please answer my question, who was that last mayor of Cranston that you liked, and why? I'll make it easy for you, just copy and paste any of your favorites: 1. "I've lived here my whole life, have you?" 2. "EVERYONE OUT" 3. "I have investment properties all over the world and can't wait to move out when I retire." 4. "I'll be at the meeting, will you?" 5. "LOL" 6. "I gave my kids a private education." ...not everyone can so not wanting to spend money in public schools is not only selfish but arrogant I'm done with you now... your next intelligent reply will be your first
Rob T May 03, 2011 at 11:07 AM
BTW... Congratulations Traf... Honor well deserved!!!
John E. Lanni, Jr. May 03, 2011 at 03:06 PM
I have known Mike Traficante most of my adult life. I have battled against him "politically" on many, many occasions but I have never ever doubted his sincerity and dedication to the youth of our city. Mike Traficante has earned this honor and I wish him well. Congratulations Mike.
Golden May 03, 2011 at 04:41 PM
Keep me posted on the mtg. I am on vacation..............thanks
David Davis May 04, 2011 at 02:39 AM
And Buddy did alot for the City of Providence while breaking the law. But we don't worry about what folks do wrong in this State what matters at the end of the day is whether they were a nice guy or they got a family member a job. I love this State for the comic relief it provides while I pay $80.00 to fill my gas tank. You guys really need to focus on the real issues that are affecting the citizens of this State everyday instead of praising the political has beens. Raymond Patriarca was a nice guy, who cares if he had dozens of people killed. Everyone wants to be a gangster in Rhode Island. Oh right, GOD does.
Golden May 04, 2011 at 09:52 AM
Agreed David, if Buddy ran again he'd win,he got things done. I am sure in Cranston and state level many have done and are doing the same thing. Time for a BIG change!!!
Rob T May 04, 2011 at 01:33 PM
David, are you comparing Traf to Buddy Cianci? Are you blaming state government to gas prices? Maybe you just like to complain. Was does any of this have to do with Traf receiving an award for the time he spent as a teacher and coach? He is being elected into the Rhode Island Interscholastic League Hall of Fame. What does that have to do with Raymond Patriarca? Golden, again, who was the last Mayor of Cranston you liked? And who would you like to replace Mayor Fung? Not the forum to attack Traf's political career. But if it made you feel better than I guess it's okay. Let's move on.
Cranston Resident May 05, 2011 at 02:20 AM
.............. .............. These blogs have finally been over-run by the mentally handicapped! And so has the City. This City was the finest city in the state and voted one of the best in the country when Traf was Mayor. It had one of the best public school systems. And it was the cleanest and best kept City. It had the best parks. It had a nationally awarded senior program. In fact it won many many national awards for being one of the best. Everybody wanted to live in Cranston. It has now turned into a financial disaster and the roads, public buildings and parks have decayed into ruins. Largely because the electorate is now exemplified by some of the lunatic contributors on this blog who sit on their fat rear-ends and complain about everything and do nothing to change it either by volunteering their own time and resources, or by properly using their voting ballots. Since Traf, we have had some of the worst mayors, administrations and city councils in the history of this city and the residents have turned into a bunch of partisan sniveling idiots. If you took every contributor here and added up their public service for a whole year, it wouldn't amount to one day of Traf's commitment, dedication and sacrifice for public good in this city. I've had it with this nonsense. Snap out of it all of you! .............. ..............
Rob T May 05, 2011 at 12:45 PM
Well said, Cranston Resident!!!
David Davis May 05, 2011 at 03:02 PM
Cranston Resident. There are good things that Traf did for the city, but you also need to weigh that with the bad that has come from his appointments, negotiations on City Contracts that affect his pension........ Additionally, please provide documentation of the following: 1. Your community service record? 2. The research and documentation you did regarding the community service of the contributors to this blog. Until you have provided this stop talking out of your AXX!
Rob T May 05, 2011 at 03:24 PM
David, You can say that about every politician ever elected... they do some good and bad. Decisions that people agree with and disagree with. This award does not have anything to do with his political career. We can acknowledge this accomplishment here and save the complaining where appropriate.... we certainly have enought people to do that...EVERYONE OUT IN 2012!!!
David Davis May 05, 2011 at 05:14 PM
Rob T The problem with you and many of the Rhode Island Electorate is that they try to separate the man/women from the politician. They do not spend the time to really look at the issues, they will vote for someone because he is a nice guy or because he/she is Italian or because their parents always voted democrat so they are obligated to do the same. We need to look at the whole person. While I applaud him for connecting with students as a teacher, his actions as a Mayor, City Council member and School committee member (chairman) have done detrimental damage to the School System that is having a negative effect on the students of today, but they don't matter to him because he needs to be concerned about his pension and the pension of all of his buddies. They are not mutually exclusive of each other.
Cranston Resident May 05, 2011 at 06:59 PM
This is an award for his contributions as a coach. Idiots like you are making it into something else because you like to read your own words. The words in this blog are meaningless compared to Traf's contribution of his time and resouces to the youth of this city. Maybe instead of typing nonsense into a computer you and your kind should try to actually do something for your community.
Rob T May 05, 2011 at 07:22 PM
David, The problem with you is that you make comments like the one above. I find it hard to believe his actions as a Mayor, which ended in 1985, City Council member and School Committee member has caused "detrimental damage to the School System... because he needs to be concerned about his pension and the pension of all his buddies". Re-read that again so you'll realize how idiotic that sounds. I didn't realize that one man had so much power to bring down the city!! How could we have let that happen!! Why is our government set up to let one man have all of these negative affects? Can he not be stopped? Here's an idea, argue that he may be part of the problem, and acknowledge that you maybe too. Hard to believe that Traf and all his buddies are sitting back laughing at the rest of Cranston. Sounds like you must have gotten cut from his football team...
Cranston Resident May 06, 2011 at 12:42 AM
During the 14 years from 1985 to 1998 Traf was mayor, the Cranston School system was the gold standard for education in Rhode Island. In fact many people moved into Cranston just so their children could attend our schools and play in our sports programs. Many of the people on this blog like David Davis who have only been here a few years would re-write that history to suit their own twisted political agendas. Well, for those of us that have had the benefit of living here during Cranston's golden era, we view the lunatics like Davis as a contributing factor in this city's decline. The last few years have brought us some of the worst elected officials in the history of this city who are the other half of the equation in our city's demise. In the mean time, I congratulate Traf for a job well done and for his commitment to public service. While I never had him as a teacher or a coach, I know many Cranstonians that did. And everyone of them that I have known, appreciated what Traf did for them as students, players and as citizens.


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