The Fairfax County Athletic Council (FCAC) and CRS has announced the winners of the 2009 Fairfax County Champions of Character Awards. This awards program honors youth, coaches and parents for extraordinary service in pursuing victory with honor. Winners from each of the county’s districts were recognized by members of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, including Chairman Sharon Bulova and Braddock District Representative John Cook, at a ceremony on Tuesday, October 6 at the Fairfax County Government Center.
In the Braddock District, BRYC earned two of the awards, both for male athlete and parent. Notably, Dane Merkel, BRYC Recreational Soccer Commissioner, was honored as outstanding parent from the Braddock District. In her introduction of the award winners, Marcia Pape, former BRYC Rec Soccer Commissioner and current president of the full Braddock Road Youth Club, said:
"The consummate parent volunteer, Dane exhibits a spirit of selfless service, helpfulness, and undying devotion to the youth of BRYC. He is a role model for all parents, as well as for other BRYC leaders and volunteers. As a parent, coach, and soccer commissioner, Dane has emphasized the importance of youth citizenship and parental involvement in all aspects of club life. As a result of Dane’s involvement, voluntarism has increased markedly, programs such as the club’s recycling initiative have expanded, and good sportsmanship has flourished. He truly sets the example of how to be involved and how to do so with character."
The award for a male athlete went to BRYC football player Charles Altman. In a note to the BRYC Board, Marcia noted that "we have many outstanding individuals involved in our club..." and said she looks forward to "...recognizing other champions from BRYC in the future."