Future BPAA President Cathy DeSocio was born into the Bowling Business


    BPAA News

    By Dick Evans

    ColumnistDickEvans.jpgWith International Bowl Expo just over the horizon, I thought it was the right time to send out some of the proprietor profiles I wrote for the BPAA's Bowling Center Magazine between July and January.

    I think the timing is good since all the proprietors that I wrote about for the magazine will be walking around the Mandalay Bay June 21-25 during the International Bowl Expo convention and trade show.

    Many fellow proprietors may recognize them by sight or name but maybe do not know their background or beliefs. Hopefully the proprietor profiles I send out over the next six weeks will provide a new insight to proprietors and other bowling officials who will be attending the 2009 International Bowl Expo.

    Bowl Expo is the biggest event in bowling but because all the BPAA employees in Arlington are so busy before the convention it is difficult for them to find time to spread the word worldwide about this worldwide bowling happening.

    The proprietor profile stories that will follow in the ensuing weeks previously have appeared in the Bowling Center Management magazines, BPAA's official monthly publication. John Berglund, executive director of the BPAA, has approved their printing under my byline.


    Proprietor Profile: Cathy DeSocio, BPAA Secretary

    BPAACathyDeSocio.jpgCathy DeSocio (pictured) is the wife of Frank DeSocio, Vice President of Strike Ten Entertainment.

    She also is the proud mother of Drew (22, University of Arkansas), Alex (21, Northwestern University) and Elizabeth (15, high school sophomore to be).

    Don't be surprise if some day you hear son Alex singing with the New York Opera, he is that good.

    Cathy is also president of JOMA and operates seven bowling centers from her headquarters in Wichita,

    Bowling is in her blood and breeding. She is a third generation bowling proprietor. Her grandfather (J. Allen Brazill) built the family's first bowling center in 1960 and her father (BPAA Hall of Famer John Crum) persuaded Cathy to change majors while in college from art/history to accounting/finance.

    His reasoning for change of majors -- so she would take over the bowling business and one day "she could afford good art."

    "I can't remember when I didn't bowl," says Cathy DeSocio. "My father was my first coach. My high game is 279 and my high series is 698.

    "Some bowlers are spectacular, others are steady and consistent. I have always been the latter and my average varies according to how much fun I am having while bowling."

    She does not see anything spectacular about what she has achieved in life but thousands of others do.

    "My parents raised me to believe in myself and my abilities. It never occurred to me that my being a woman would be an issue to anyone. It you do your job well and treat people with respect, they usually respond in kind. I can't control what others think of me, only my own actions."

    Cathy also sees nothing spectacular about the fact she is in line to become the first female president of the BPAA in 2112.

    "If I am fortunate enough to be chosen to represent BPAA as its president some day, I hope it is because I am the best proprietor for the job and not because I am the best woman for the job," Cathy said emphatically.

    "I can only imagine how the position as BPAA president would change my life. I hope that if it happens that I can have a positive impact on our industry."

    But ever believe that Cathy is too busy to enjoy life to its fullest.

    She admitted that she "absolutely likes" to give husband Frank DeSocio a hard time "every chance I get...sometimes he even deserves it." Imaging giving her husband, the long standing and successful face of Strike Ten Entertainment, a hard time...although Cathy does have a mischievous smile.

    And just for the record she loves traveling.

    Cathy envisions great things coming out of the International Bowling Campus after the United States Bowling Congress and the International Bowling Hall of Fame and Museum complete their moves to Arlington, Texas.

    "Both moves will have a profound impact on our industry. Both events are coming about because leaders took the initiative to force change for the possibility of growth. We have to be patient, neither move can have immediate positive results. Most new ventures don't fail due to lack of effort, most fail due to the lack of perseverance.

    "Our sport has been around in some form since the early Egyptians. I think we will persevere and thrive with the new symmetry that is being provided by the uniting of USBC and will be provided by the International Bowling Campus."

    Her company certainly is doing its part with 90 percent of its leagues sanctioned.

    When not buried in work, Cathy's "No. 1 passion is traveling. I also enjoy bowling, spending time with my family, cooking then working out so I can enjoy my cooking. I am also a veracious reader."

    She labels it a "strange fact that I wanted to be art historian. I was majoring in Art History in college until my father strongly suggested that I make art my avocation, not my vocation. Art still is a passion for me."

    Thankfully for the bowling industry, "father knew best."