Hall of Fame

Steve Martins
Ice Hockey

Graduation Year


Induction Year


Hall of Fame

Harvard Athletic Achievements

In the storied history of Harvard hockey, only 18 Harvard athletes have been named First-Team All-America. Steve Martins was one of these standouts. Martins began to assert his presence on the ice from the beginning, contributing impressive performances as a freshman that earned him the George Percy Award in 1992 as the most valuable freshman. Over the years, his consistent hard work on the ice helped him move up the list of all-time point scorers in Harvard history where he currently ranks 15th with 139 points. (He also ranks 4th and 5th on Harvard’s all-time penalties per season list with 40 and 41.) As a two-time John Tudor Memorial Cup winner in 1994 and 1995 and team MVP in 1995, Steve is one of Harvard hockey’s greats. Steve’s standout year came his junior season when he had personal bests in goals (25), assists (35), points (60), earning ECAC player of the year honors and leading his team to both the ECAC Tournament title and the Frozen Four in Minnesota. Steve’s hockey accomplishments also extended beyond Harvard when he was drafted to the Hartford Whalers. Over the years, Steve has had a successful career playing for the Whalers, the Carolina Hurricanes, the Tampa Bay Lightning, the New York Islanders, the St. Louis Blues, and the Ottawa Senators.

Hall of Fame

Remembering Harvard Athletics

I would like to thank the Varsity Club and the Selection Committee for this honor and also congratulate the other inductees that are here tonight. A special recognition and congratulations to Jerry Pawloski, who I was fortunate enough to have as a coach and friend during my four years at Harvard. Through his passion and genuine love for the game of hockey, he instilled a sense of dedication and work ethic that enabled me to play the game for as long as I have.

As anyone who knows me would agree, I’ve never understated the important role that luck has had in shaping my life. Luck can be sometimes defined as “the force that seems to operate for good or ill in a person’s life, shaping circumstances, events, or opportunities.” My 6 year old son, Isac, with his extreme infatuation with anything associated with Star Wars, probably has a different idea of what “the force” is and how it works. For me, however, that force, giving me good fortune and wisdom throughout my years, stems from my experience with the people that make up Harvard, and in particular, those that I came to know through Harvard Hockey and Harvard Athletics. When Peter Miller first called me as an alumni and avid supporter of the hockey program, I didn’t even know Harvard had a hockey team; let alone did I ever imagine being able to frequent such a renowned institution. With my bags packed and a tank full of gas, I was ready to drive to Victoriaville, Quebec, some 20 years ago, to partake in my first Junior Hockey Tryout, which, more notably, would have made me ineligible to play college hockey. I was fortunate, lucky, to say the least, that Peter called me the night before and became the driving force that convinced me to pursue an education in the U.S. I can’t help but stop and think of how different my life would be if I had not met him, or more accurately, if he had not believed in me.

Thank you again Peter for being here tonight, and more importantly, thank you for giving me an opportunity and much needed direction some 20 years ago. You have given many former and current players that same wisdom and I know that Harvard Hockey, and the University in its entirety, is indebted to you for your commitment to it’s success.

My first few phone conversations with Lane MacDonald, one of Harvard Hockey’s all time greats, who I got to know, if not briefly, during my senior year in High School, madea lasting impression on me. While coaches from other schools I was considering at the time made every attempt to vilify and discredit competing programs, Lane, in his soft spoken, yet reassuring voice and demeanor, never once said anything derogatory or critical about other schools. In fact, he went out of his way to stress that although he thought Harvard would be a great fit for me both in and out of the classroom, ultimately, I would have a great college experience at any of the schools I was considering should I decide going elsewhere was best for me. He is a great ambassador for Harvard Athletics whose humility speaks louder than words. How lucky I was to have met Lane.

How lucky I was to have met Bill Cleary, our athletic director at the time, and listen to his legendary stories of Olympic glory, to feel his infectious love for Harvard Hockey, and to attempt to act through on his subtle tips on scoring goals around the net... even while having to endure his stubborn dislike of anything that had to do with the NHL. I can remember him saying over and over, “They don’t play the game the way it should be played Stevie.” I miss talking hockey with Bill Cleary.

How lucky I was to have a coach like Ron Tomassoni, who taught me that team success always comes before personal accolades. My junior year, with only a few games left to play during the regular season and the league scoring title within reach, Ron sat me out a game. I had taken a bad retaliatory penalty the game before, actually, most of the games before that, and he felt that not dressing for a game would possibly get his point across to me. And while I can’t actually say I took less penalties the following year (that unpleasant stat actually remained quite high, unfortunately), I can say I learned a lot from that experience. Thanks Coach Tomassoni for all of your life lessons learned over at the Bright Center.

How lucky I was to share four great years with fellow hockey classmates Perry Cohagen, Brad Konik, Cory Gustafson, Bryan Lonsinger and Ben Coughlin. We achieved so much on-ice success as a class and I can’t thank all of them enough for the lasting friendships and memories off the ice. I was lucky to have had Captains like Kevin Sneddon, Sean McCann, and Ted Drury who were unwavering in their commitment to team success and to this day, still stand out as being some of the greatest, most genuine people I’ve met in all my hockey years.

How lucky I was to have parents that were willing to give everything they had to provide me with an opportunity that they themselves were never given. Thanks Mom and Dad for all your sacrifices; they never went unnoticed and were never unappreciated. I am also so lucky to have a brother, also here tonight, who, despite being thousands of miles away, was always there to offer support in times of need, especially during my freshman year. Thanks Dean for always being there.

Finally, how lucky I was to have met my wife Jennifer after my college years, and to share with her in the building of our ultimate team together, our family. I can only hope that my kids, Isac and Isabelle, will surround themselves with the type of people that I was so fortunate to get to know during my years at Harvard, and in doing so, accumulate knowledge and wisdom beyond their years.

Thank you Harvard for the memories, I will always consider myself so lucky.