Over his 62-year playing career, Irv won most every handball award offered at the Multnomah Athletic Club, cementing his legacy within the handball community, and demonstrating his unfettered love for the sport.
Our founder, Irv Alten, was born in New York City, NY on July 18, 1918. He attended the University of Idaho on a track scholarship.
Irv was an outstanding track star growing up and was a miler at the University of Idaho. When attending a track meet in Portland, Irv was invited to visit the Multnomah Athletic Club (MAC) by the athletic director. The following year he moved to Portland and joined the MAC. For the next 75 years, Irv was a member and handball advocate. Irv started playing handball at the age of 8, by hitting a tennis ball against a wall with the other boys in NYC. Once a MAC member, Irv played regularly for 62 years. Over the years, Irv won most every handball award offered at the MAC, as well as the President’s Award in 2002 for service and the Joe Loprinzi Award in 2005 for inspiration.
Irv Alten 1918 – 2013
After his playing days were over, Irv wanted to give back to the sport he loved so much. In 2003, he and his wife Gloria established the Alten Handball Foundation. The foundation is dedicated to encouraging and fostering participation in playing of the game of handball with respect to children, youth and others in the Pacific Northwest.
In addition to handball, Irv was a lifelong track fan. He attended the track three World Championships and 10 different Olympics. Irv passed away at the age of 95, but his legacy lives on.