To Be, Rather Than to Seem

Athletics Hall of Fame Inductee Ricardo “Ricky” Bajo B’81

In May, Ricardo “Ricky” Bajo B’81 was inducted into the Academy of the Holy Names Athletics Hall of Fame at the Middle School Sports Banquet. An AHN “lifer,” Bajo attended Boys Academy from kindergarten through 8th grade. While at Boys Academy, he participated on all sports teams, most notably the varsity basketball team which won first place in the Youth Sports League in 1981. Bajo was a hardworking student as well as a leader, evidenced by his selection as Most Popular in 8th grade. 

Bajo attended Jesuit High School where he was a standout basketball player. He was a member of the 1984 state championship team and co-captain of the 1985 state runner-up team. His coach, the late John Szponar, described him as “lightning quick” and he was known as the human assist. “Ricky is one of the greatest point guards in the history of Jesuit basketball,” Szponar said. “He was an outstanding leader and one of the most coachable players I’ve ever coached.”

Upon graduation from high school, Bajo attended Florida State University, graduating in 1989 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He began his professional career in banking, working his way to assistant VP for private banking in less than four years. Bajo left banking in 1995 to become a pharmaceutical sales specialist with Astrazeneca Pharmaceuticals. For more than 25 years, he has been a leader in sales and marketing for the company and is currently an executive district sales manager. 

He has been honored throughout his career with several leadership excellence and Salesperson of the year awards, as well as consistent top ratings and strategic appointments. 

Bajo attributes his desire to succeed to his days at the Academy, where he learned he hated to lose, telling the middle school student-athletes, “As you move on, it’s not just about sports, it’s about academics. … For me, what drove me was I was not going to fail. I can trace that back all the way to my days at the Academy. I remember them vividly. Those days are what started my passion and my ability to be successful.”

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