Celebration of a Successful Year
November 16, 2000
On November 16, the Inner City Handball Association (ICHA) held its annual awards ceremony. While similar in format to past events, this year's ceremonies had a bit of a twist. After presenting the awards, Paul Williams, president and founder of the ICHA was a surprised recipient as well.
Dori Ten spoke for the ICHA Board and other attendees as she honored Williams many contributions to the game. Ten spoke of Williams' relentless campaign for ICHA to succeed, his dedication and support for other program directors and his commitment to having the youngsters develop their academic skills as well as their handball abilities.
It's been a good year for the ICHA. Its alumni have become major players in the game. Cesar Sala, once an ICHA kid, won the one-wall world championships this year in Chicago and Kendall Lewis another ICHA "old timer" qualified for this year's Pro Stop. The Mayor's Cup, an ICHA sponsored event had larger turnouts than anytime in the past. And of particular note was the first New York City Big Blue Championship, probably the largest one-wall tournament in the past 20 years, run by the New York Park's Dept in cooperation with the ICHA, the St. Albans Handball Association (SAHA) and Our Own Handball Association (OOHA).
The ICHA awards reflect the different types of contributions being made to the sport.
- Mike Watson won the Outstanding Volunteer Award not only for his assistance at events and clinics, but also in appreciation for his dedication and commitment in coaching a group of great young players in Elmhurst Queens.
- Dwight Worley, president of the St. Albans Handball Association, won the Jack Lynch award, in honor of the tremendous work he's done running and promoting handball tournaments during the past last 5 years.
- Fred Turbee, was presented the outstanding Board Member award for going beyond the call of duty, providing solid coverage at the events and assisting with some of the administrative work as well.
- Joe Ingrassia received the Community Service Award. Joe is the Director of Athletes fund for the NY Athletic Club and has provided the ICHA with a grant that allows it to subsidize kids who can't afford equipment or entry fees for handball tournaments.
- Phyllis Kossoff was given the Outstanding Contributor award in memory of Burton Kossoff who passed away this past year. Burton had been a great supporter of ICHA and Phyllis continued this tradition by making a generous contribution in his name (Burton received an ICHA award in 1999).
- Carlos Espinal won the male Jr. Athlete Award. The Junior awards are given for the combination of success on the court and in school. Carlos won the PSAL City Championship Iron Horse Award and is also doing well as a student at City College.
- Ha-ming Ong won the Jr. Athlete Award for females. Although only 15 years old, Ha-ming and her partner took the women's B doubles at the Worlds this year. Ha-ming is also a dedicated student.
- Cesar Sala won the Outstanding Alumni Award. Cesar started as an ICHA Junior about eight years ago. This year he won both the Mayor's Cup and the World Championship. Last year's award winner Joe Kaplan, a good friend of Cesar's was his partner when the two took the Doubles Title at this year's Nationals.
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