The U.S. Youth Soccer National Convention convened this past January in Kansas City, Mo. The National Convention climaxed with the annual Awards Gala that honors the players, coaches, and administrators around the country that are making a national impact on the beautiful game.
Our own Indiana Soccer Executive Director Dave Guthrie, who was there supporting Indiana’s DaMarcus Beasley who was being inducted into US Youth Soccer’s Hall of Fame, found himself walking up onto the stage. Guthrie, a long-time advocate of soccer in the Hoosier state, was surprised when his name was announced as receiving the most prestigious, “Evelyn Gill Leadership Award”.
2022 marks the first year of the Evelyn Gill Leadership Award. Awarding two individuals the inaugural year, the award recognizes outstanding leadership in the youth soccer space. Gill, a former president of New Jersey Youth Soccer, spent over 30 years dedicated to soccer at local, state, and national levels.
Gill served on the U.S. Youth Soccer Board of Directors in the late nineties and ultimately held the vice president position on the national board of directors for 14 years. Gill’s dedication to the sport was memorialized in 2015 when she was inducted into the U.S. Youth Soccer Hall of Fame.
Dave got his start with Indiana Soccer after serving as the St. Francis Soccer Club’s first president and subsequently was elected as the president of the Indiana Youth Soccer Association. After retiring from serving as the CEO of a publicly traded company, Guthrie returned to Indiana Soccer to serve as its executive director.
“[Evelyn] was a mentor to many of us. She was admired by many of us for her character and her willingness to speak out for what is right,” said Guthrie in his acceptance speech.
“She served in a professional capacity working as the CEO of a not-for-profit dedicated to serving others and she carried that same love and compassion for others in her service to New Jersey Youth Soccer and U.S. Youth Soccer.”