Richard “Dick” Pace, a Maitland insurance executive, began his career as an official for local teams in the early 1950s. He later served as the president of both the Southeastern Conference football and basketball associations. He has officiated in 20 postseason football bowl games, three NCAA basketball tournaments, and now serves as commissioner of the Sunshine State Conference.
Attending college at the University of Florida, Pace played three sports for the school and earned seven varsity letters. Before starting his career as an official, he briefly held a career in professional baseball. In a 35-year officiating stint, Pace has worked in more the 2,400 football and basketball games and been a pioneer in the formation of the Central Florida Officials Association, the state’s largest and best-trained organization for football and basketball officials. He in a member of the Central Florida Officials Association Hall of Fame, the National Federation of State High School Associations, and the Florida Citrus Bowl Hall of Fame.