Monday, April 14, 2014

Seahawks honored as AWG's 'Washingtonians of the Year'

Lt. Governor Owen, left, with former Seahawk player Mack Strong, who was
among the representatives from the Seahawks organization on hand to accept it.
To Strong's left, at back, are players Chandler Fenner, Phil Bates, Bryan Walters
and Anthony McCoy. In front are Armando Mejia and Keli Imus from Seahawks
staff and Mike Flood, vice president for community relations and special projects.
At far right is Roger Flygare, commanding general of the Association of Washington
The 2014 Super Bowl-winning Seattle Seahawks were honored as 2013 “Washingtonians of the Year” by the Association of Washington Generals at an April 12, 2014 event at the Virginia Mason Athletic Center in Renton. But the award had as much to do with the team’s accomplishments off the field as it does on.

“This team has done a tremendous amount of good for our state, both in raising our collective spirits as they fought their way through a winning season and eventual Super Bowl victory, and also because of all that the players and coaches do on their own time toward the greater good of Washington citizens,” said Lt. Governor Brad Owen, an ex-officio member of the AWG board and affiliated with the service organization by state statute.

Owen served as emcee of the event, while longtime Seattle sports broadcaster Tony Ventrella tag- teamed the lieutenant governor as the program host. In making his first appearance at an AWG event since his election as Commanding General in February, Roger Flygare led the audience of about 70 in several rounds of "Go Seahawks" before presenting the award.

Mike Flood, Seahawks vice president for community relations
and special projects, receives a framed copy of a legislative bill
that authorized a specialty license plate for the Seattle Seahawks
and Seattle Sounders FC. Flood came to Lt. Gov. Owen with the
idea and the lieutenant governor requested the legislation.

“The Seahawks as an organization, as a team, and as individual players have demonstrated leadership, selflessness, generosity and compassion in their service to all Washingtonians,” added Ralph Ibarra, immediate past commander of the AWG and event coordinator. “Bestowing the Washingtonian of the Year Award for 2013 to the Super Bowl XLVIII Champions is especially momentous…Go HAWKS!!”

Washingtonians of the Year trophy

The association’s nomination for the Seahawks listed the following charitable activities by the Seahawks as reasons for giving the organization the award:

Seattle Seahawks Charitable Foundation |
Founded in 1995, the mission of the Seattle Seahawks Charitable Foundation (SSCF) is to promote the healthy social, emotional, intellectual, and physical development of youth by enhancing opportunities for participation in sports and fitness activities. In the fall of 2004, the foundation unveiled the Spirit of 12 Partners Program, a collaboration among Seattle youth service organizations, the Seahawks, and The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation. Each partner keeps 100% of the proceeds from the sales of Seahawks programs during the team’s home games, which is matched by The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation.

Coach Pete Carroll |
A Better Seattle (ABS) is a Seattle Seahawks community initiative led by Head Coach Pete Carroll. ABS works to reduce Seattle area youth and gang violence by forging partnerships that generate opportunities for at-risk youth to take control of their lives and strive for better futures.
Russell Wilson Passing Academy |
The RWPA exists to promote the mental and physical development of youth, with the goal of encouraging kids to develop high character and moral standards, a sense of competitiveness and fair play, a respect for authority, service to others, and a love of God, family, and country. In that spirit, the RWPA welcomes inner-city and underprivileged youth to the camp through sponsorships, giving them a much-needed and valuable opportunity to learn the game of football and compete.
Richard Sherman | Blanket Coverage
The mission of Blanket Coverage is to level the playing field for children enrolled in grades K-12 who have a strong combination of potential, goals and a desire to make the most of their education.
Derrick Coleman | Seahawks-Fullback
“I want to reach out to the other hard-of-hearing and deaf community, to kids I can relate to, and who can relate to me,” he said. “Everybody has problems. I wear a hearing aid. Some people have glasses. Some people have depression. But as long as you don’t let that get in the way, you can do anything you want.”

Along with featuring the Washingtonian of the Year and highlights of AWG projects, the event inclued tours of the VMAC, Blue Thunder Drum Line, Sea Gals, refreshments and a barbecue hosted by Famous Daves.

The Blue Thunder entertained the Generals and their guests as they arrived at
the Virginia Mason Athletic Center.