Eagles Youth Partnership Honored At Henry P. Iba Awards

EVENT DIGNITARIES: The Iba Award line-up included, from left, Bob Carpenter, master of ceremonies; Nnamdi Asomugha, male recipient; Danny Manning, keynote speaker; Sarah Martinez-Helfman, Eagles Youth Partnership – President’s Award; and Gil Mendoza, accepting the female recipient award for Jessica Mendoza.


Another sell-out crowd of over 1,000 guests attended the 19th Annual Rotary Club of Tulsa’s Henry P. Iba Citizen Athlete Awards at the Renaissance Tulsa Hotel and Convention Center.

Honored at the event were two outstanding professional athletes. The female Iba Award recipient was Jessica Mendoza, two-time Olympic medalist as a member of the softball team, and a member of the National Pro Fastpitch’s USSSA Pride, which captured the 2010 Championship title. She is an color analyst for the Women’s College World Series and a sideline reporter during the College Football and Major League Baseball seasons. She was voted Women’s Sports Foundation Sportswoman of the Year in the team category in 2008 as well as Softball Female Athlete of the Year in 2006. She just completed her two-year term as president of the Women’s Sports Foundation, is an athlete ambassador for Team Darfur, and involved in Girl Effect, a movement driven by girl champions around the globe to end poverty.

The male Iba Award recipient was Nnamdi Asomugha, a three-time Pro Bowl and four-time All Pro selection, and widely regarded as one of the elite cornerbacks in the . He collected 11 career interceptions and two sacks during his eight-year career in Oakland and three interceptions since he signed with the Philadelphia Eagles in July of last year. He was named one of three finalists for the 2012 Bart Starr Award, one of three finalists for the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award in 2011, was presented with the 44th annual Byron “Whizzer” White Man of the Year award in 2010, became the ambassador for United Way of the Bay Area, and received the Jefferson Award for Public Service in 2010. He is currently the National Ambassador of the and United Way. Asomugha and his family formed the Asomugha Foundation to have a positive impact on disadvantaged youth in the United States and underprivileged orphans and widows in Africa.

The President’s Award and a $5,000 donation was presented to the Philadelphia Eagles, Eagles Youth Partnership and accepted by Sarah Martinez-Helfman, executive director. In the 18-year history of the awards program, only two other President’s Awards have been presented — one to former coach John Wooden in 2004 and one to Olympic medalist speed skater Joey Cheek in 2007. The award was created to honor those who actively promote and advance in competitive athletics the qualities of leadership, education, compassion and humanity in others and through their leadership inspire and mentor others to do likewise. The Philadelphia Eagles Team recognized its potential as a social impact leader and role model. With this leverage, the team has taken the lead in establishing an award-winning charity, Eagles Youth Partnership () and cutting edge business practices that demonstrate how a business can do well by doing good. is a community outreach program, which serves over 50,000 low-income children in the greater Philadelphia region every year with a focus on health and education programs.

The keynote speaker was Danny Manning, the new basketball coach at The University of Tulsa and one of college basketball’s most outstanding players in the history of the sport.

This year’s master of ceremonies was Bob Carpenter, sportscaster and TV voice of the Washington Nationals. Carpenter was introduced by Phil Lakin, Jr., president of the Rotary Club of Tulsa.

Grady Nichols performed live music and former Olympic medalist Madeline Manning Mims sang inspiring renditions of the National Anthem and God Bless America.

Proceeds from the Henry P. Iba Citizen Athlete Awards event primarily fund the Rotary Club of Tulsa Foundation, which has approximately $2.5 million in assets and uses only its earnings to support local non-profits with an emphasis on projects benefitting young people. More information is available at ibaawards.com.

Updated 06-25-2012

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