Saturday, April 25, YWCA Greensboro held the 3rd Annual Girls & Women In Sports Awards Dinner at the NC A&T Alumni Foundation Event Center. Rosemary Plybon, WFMY News 2 served as Mistress of Ceremony.
It is the belief of the YWCA Greensboro that the achievements of girls and women in sports need to be recognized and highlighted. Greensboro and our nation are home to great sports initiatives, but few to date have recognized the women who have contributed greatly. This event unites the mission of the YWCA and the achievements of women and girls in sports into an exciting event that also recognizes the importance of Title IX of the Educational Assistance Act. With this vision in mind, the following local women and girls were honored:
The premiere award, The Kay Yow Outstanding Female In Sports Award, was given to Lynne Agee, Head Coach, Womenâ€™s Basketball, UNC Greensboro.
The award was presented by Stephanie Glance who coached alongside Coach Yow at NC State for 15 seasons. She served as Associate head coach/recruiting coordinator in charge of the daily operations of the Wolfpack Womenâ€™s Basketball program. Stephanie played a large role in bringing the program to unprecedented heights over the past 15 years.
In qualifying for this award, Lynne Agee must have made significant contributions in the area of women and girls in sports in the tradition of Kay Yow. Coach Yow has been widely recognized as successful in the field of athletics as a role model for others and as one who has made significant contributions to the development and empowerment of many women and girls in sports through her many years of coaching and other involvement in athletics, including advocacy for Title IX. Lynne Ageeâ€™s participation in athletics and contributions to sport embody the values of the YWCA’s mission of eliminating racism and empowering women. Members and friends of the Yow family were in attendance.
Lynne Agee has been the UNCG womenâ€™s basketball coach for the past 27 years. During that time she has become one of the most successful and respected coaches in the country. UNCG has enjoyed consistent success during her tenure, including sixteen seasons in which her squads have won 20 or more games. In 1998, Agee became the first womenâ€™s coach to reach the NCAA tournament in all three divisions. Born in Roanoke, Virginia, athletic competition has always been an important part of Ageeâ€™s life. In 1981 Lynne Agee was named womenâ€™s basketball coach at UNCG, where she also coached the menâ€™s tennis team. In her first year, with the help of a recruiting class that included two players who transferred from Roanoke, Agee began what would become a hall-of-fame career at UNCG; f her career achievements at UNCG, she was inducted into the UNCG Athletics Hall of Fame in the fall of 2004. This past fall, Agee was also inducted into the Guilford County Sports Hall of Fame.
Achievement Awards were presented in two categories: 9th -12th grade and college and older.
Achievement Awards (Grades 9th -12th)
Christin Newman is an accomplished multi-sport athlete at Page High School and exemplifies all the qualities of an exceptional young woman. She has earned All-State honors in tennis for four years and All-State in soccer for two years. She was named MVP of the State Tennis Tournament. Christin is a leader who sets a high standard for achievement not only in athletics but also in the classroom. An outstanding student, Christin maintains a perfect 6.0 grade point average and recently received a full scholarship to play tennis at Virginia Tech University. Outside of school, Christin volunteers and helps younger athletes achieve success in both soccer with the Kiddy Kickers and in tennis with The Guild Family Services.
Kate Riley represents the very best of female student-athletes in our community. Kate swims for the Greensboro Swimming Association where she represented North Carolina in the Southern Zone Championships in Atlanta last summer and qualified for the Prestigious Junior Nationals. She also competes for the Northwest High School swimming team and earned Metro 4-A Swimming MVP and NISCAA All-American honors. Recently Kate was named a USA Swimming Academic All-American for the second straight year. Kate has been an active volunteer with GSAâ€™s Teens in Action including the Urban Ministriesâ€™ Thanksgiving dinner program. She also organized a swim-a-thon to raise money for the United Nationâ€™s â€œNothing But Netsâ€ malaria prevention program.
Achievement Awards (College and Above)
Alex Cooke recently completed her fourth and final year of eligibility as a swimmer at Greensboro College. Alex now holds the team record in nine individual events and is a member of every record-holding relay team. This season, Alex won every race in which she competed except one. At the Conference Championship, Alex won all three of her individual events and was named swimmer of the meet. Her times qualified her for the Division III NCAA Championships in Minneapolis, which earned her All-American honors. No other Pride swimmer has ever qualified for the NCAA. As team captain the past two seasons, Alex set a positive example for teammates and earned her place as one of Greensboro Collegeâ€™s finest student athletes.
Empowerment Awards were presented in two categories: Community Leader in Sports and Coach/Teacher in Sports.
Empowerment Award for Community Leader
LaToya Marsh is very active in the community, working as a volunteer for seven organizations while working full-time. As coach of the Greensboro Special Olympics cheer squad, Marsh guided her seven cheerleaders to a bronze medal at the NC State Games. Marsh has weekly practice with her squad and takes them to Special Olympics basketball games to fine-tune their skills. In February her squad won first place at a cheerleading competition. After a recent speaking engagement at the Special Olympics Spring Games, a special needs youth approached Marsh with a hug and said, â€œThanks for letting me know that I can do anything regardless of what people say about me. I wish more people were like you.â€
Empowerment Award for Coach/Teacher
After a nine year career with the High Point Police Department, Kris Britton, graduate of Appalachian State University, went on to earn her masterâ€™s degree in secondary education from Wake Forest University. Britton started her coaching career as JV coach at Southwest Guilford High School. In the past five years as Dudley High School coach, Britton has led the Lady Panthers to five consecutive 3-A Regional appearances and this year won the teamâ€™s first State 3-A championship. Coach Britton was recently named the News and Record Coach of the Year and NC Associated Press State High School coach of the Year. She has also been a Guilford County Teacher of the Year. Coach Britton stresses her core values of family, integrity, and discipline with her players and students.
The guest speaker for the nightâ€™s event was Caroline Lind Olympic gold medalist and Greensboro native. She spoke on the importance of finding your sport because the benefits are great. She tried a number of sports before finding rowing for which her 6ft. stature made her very competitive. She also encouraged continued support of Title IX. Lind graduated from Princeton University with a degree in Cultural Anthropology in 2006. She hopes to compete in the2012 Olympics in London. After the 2012 Olympics, she plans to attend law school and pursue a career in discrimination law.
To learn more about this annual YWCA Greensboro event, contact Mildred Powell at 273-3461 ext. 113 or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the YWCA Greensboro website at ywcagsonc.org.