The referee and three ringside judges have been named for tomorrow night's Amir Khan vs Lamont Peterson fight, and given that this is a fight not in Vegas, New York, New Jersey, California, or any other more "normal" big fight location, many people will not have heard of, well, any of these officials.
The referee is Joe Cooper of Virginia, and the three ringside judges are Valerie Dorsett (North Carolina), George Hill (New Jersey), and Nelson Vazquez (Puerto Rico). In an interview with RingTV.com, HBO unofficial scorer Harold Lederman gives nice reviews of all four, and says he anticipates no issues, noting that Dorsett is a former chairperson for the state athletic commission in Georgia, and that Vazquez is "one of the most experienced judges in the entire world," and that Hill has worked a lot in the Philadelphia area.
After the jump, we look at some of the notable fights for each of the four officials.
Valerie Dorsett (Judge, North Carolina)
On March 26 of this year, Dorsett traveled to South Africa as an IBF judge for the super bantamweight title fight between Steve Molitor and Takalani Ndlovu, scoring the bout 118-110 for Ndlovu. She was also an appointed judge for the IBF super flyweight title fight that night between Moruti Mthalane and Johnriel Casimero, which Mthalane won via TKO-5.
Other notable fights: Carlos Tamara vs Luis Lazarte (Lazarte 115-113), Hugo Cazares vs Ivan Calderon I (Calderon 115-112), Arthur Abraham vs Lajuan Simon (Abraham 118-109), Clinton Woods vs Julio Cesar Gonzalez (Woods 117-111), Mark Johnson vs Ratanachai Singwancha (118-109), Lennox Lewis vs Hasim Rahman I (Rahman KO-5).
She was the dissenting judge in a split decision on German soil in September 2009, scoring the vacant IBF middleweight fight between Sebastian Sylvester and visiting Giovanni Lorenzo for the road fighter, 116-111. Sylvester won a split decision. In March of that year, she scored Arthur Abraham vs Lajuan Simon for Abraham, 118-109.
George Hill (Judge, New Jersey)
Hill's biggest fights this year were televised on HBO. He was ringside when Rico Ramos knocked out Akifumi Shimoda in Atlantic City, and perhaps sadly, was not ringside for the Williams vs Lara fight later in the evening. Hill had Shimoda up 60-54 when the knockout came in the seventh round. He also worked the Mikey Garcia vs Matt Remillard demolition in March, which Garcia won after ten mostly one-sided rounds.
Other notable fights: Lucian Bute vs Edison Miranda (KO-3 for Bute), Joshua Clottey vs Zab Judah (86-85 for Clottey), Antonio Margarito vs Kermit Cintron II (Margarito 50-45 at stoppage), Miguel Cotto vs Carlos Quintana (Cotto 48-45 at stoppage), Wladimir Klitschko vs Samuel Peter I (Klitschko 114-111), Bernard Hopkins vs Syd Vanderpool (Hopkins 118-109), Charles Brewer vs Herol Graham (Brewer 86-84 at stoppage).
Hill, like Dorsett, also was a judge causing a split decision in Germany when he scored the 1998 fight between Sven Ottke and Charles Brewer for Brewer, 117-111. Hill may be best known for three Arturo Gatti fights: Gatti's wins over Micky Ward in their second and third bouts (98-91, 96-93 for Gatti), and Gatti's victory of Tracy Harris Patterson (Gatti 116-110).
Nelson Vazquez (Judge, Puerto Rico)
Vazquez has been involved in a very large number of notable fights, and listing all of them would take a while. On December 3, he was a judge for Brandon Rios vs John Murray at Madison Square Garden, and he was a judge for Pacquiao vs Clottey (119-109 Pacquiao). He works all the time. Very busy judge.
Joe Cooper (Referee, Virginia)
Cooper is the least experienced of the crew in big fights. He hasn't refereed a world title fight since 2003, when DeMarcus Corley beat Randall Bailey at the DC Armory. He's worked a lot of Jimmy Lange fights.