While the on-field action gets a lot of attention at the Little League Baseball® World Series, it’s the dedication of volunteers around the world that make it possible for all children to have a meaningful Little League experience.
On Thursday, Aug. 21, at the Genetti Hotel in downtown Williamsport, Pa., Little League recognized the local contributions of volunteers and one special Little Leaguer at the annual Awards Breakfast. Hosted by ESPN’s Karl Ravech, the event paid tribute to five individuals who exemplify Character, Courage, and Loyalty.
Volunteer of the Year Award
Ed Wilson, Midland, Mich. – Midland Northeast Little League
Becoming a volunteer in 1964, Mr. Wilson has served several roles in his 50 years of service. Whether he is coaching, serving on the league’s Board of Directors, or maintaining fields, Wilson constantly strives to make Midland Northeast Little League an environment for kids to learn and grow. Mr. Wilson’s service and dedication make him the perfect recipient for the 2014 Little League Volunteer of the Year Award.
Mom of the Year, Award
Betsy Wilson, Orange, Calif. – Orange Little League
Juggling the busy schedules of a family of six can be challenging. However, Elizabeth (Betsy) Wilson looks at this task as the joy of motherhood. For the commitment to ensuring her children have meaningful Little League® experiences and for her dedicated volunteer work, Little League Baseball and Softball has named Mrs. Wilson the recipient of the 2014 Little League Mom of the Year Award.
Joni Fichter, Houston, Texas – West University Little League
It is said that giving is the greatest gift of all, and for Joni Fichter, no other statement is truer. For her generosity and dedication to making sure all children in Houston, Texas, have a meaningful Little League experience, Little League® Baseball and Softball has named Mrs. Fichter the recipient of the 2014 Little League Challenger Division® Award.
Good Sport Award
Cole Daniels, Good Sport Award, Montesano, Wash. – Montesano Little League
For Cole Daniels, 12, Little League® is so much more than playing baseball. Cole, a player at Montesano Little League on the Pacific Coast in Washington, is a leader at the Little League fields. With two younger brothers, he takes on the “big brother” role for not just his siblings, but for the entire league. For his display of Little League’s core values of Character, Courage, and Loyalty, Cole has been selected as the recipient of the 2014 Little League Good Sport of the Year Award.
Howard and Gail Paster Little League Urban Initiative Volunteer of the Year Award
Ray Bernal, San Diego, Calif. – San Diego American Little League
For Ray Bernal, a lot has happened in the past five years. He became the president of San Diego American Little League; with the help of the San Diego Padres, he renovated the league’s baseball fields and added a softball field; and he nearly tripled the size of his league, adding Junior and Senior League Baseball divisions, as well as three levels of Little League Softball®. For these accomplishments he was selected as the recipient of the 2014 Howard and Gail Paster Little League® Urban Initiative Volunteer of the Year Award.