MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WTVY) — Governor Kay Ivey and the ASF Foundation recognized the Alabama State Games’ 2017 Youth Male and Female, and Adult Male and Female Athletes of the Year during the Governor’s proclamation signing ceremony on Tuesday, November 28th at the State Capitol. The four recipients who received the Athlete of the Year award were; Laurie Rinehart, Dothan, AL (Adult Female), Reggie Hill Montgomery, AL (Adult Male), Aswin Revanna, Vestavia Hills, AL (Youth Male), and Emma Tarokh, Athens, AL (Youth Female). The 2017 Athlete of the Year is presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors. In addition to being recognized by Governor Ivey, each recipient will receive a special medal, walk in the Parade of Athletes and anchor the torch relay during the Alabama State Games Opening Ceremony at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville on June 8, 2018. (www.alagames.com)
Adult Female Athlete of the Year, Laurie Rinehart, Dothan, AL - age 53, has been swimming competitively since the age of 7 for the Club International de Natacion' in Balboa, Canal Zone-Republic of Panama. She moved to Dothan, Alabama in May 1979 and began swimming for the Dothan Dolphins. Some of her most prized accomplishments were qualifying for swim trials at the Junior Olympics Aug. 8, 1975, in Miami Springs, Florida and swim meets in the countries of Costa Rica and Guatemala; she qualified and swam for the United States at Pan Am Games April 3-7, 1977 and March 18 – 22, 1978, both in Cali, Columbia. Other accomplishments along her journey include: V.I.C.A. (Vocational Industrial Clubs of America), Alabama State Skill Olympics, 1st place in Medical Administrative Assistant, 1987, 2nd place V.I.C.A. National Skill Olympics Representing Alabama in Wichita Falls, KS. 1987. Was Aquatics Director for the Boy Scouts of America, Camp AlaFlo, New Brockton, Alabama 2001-2008. Cubmaster for Pack 75/750 from 1998 thru 2008 and Committee Member Troop 106 2002-present day.
Adult Male Athlete of the Year, Reggie Hill, Montgomery, AL - age 53, has been competing and coaching in track and field for over 35 years. He has competed in masters track and field events since 2006, the Penn Relays being the most notable. He has competed in the last 7 Alabama State Games, bringing home more than 24 gold, silver, and bronze medals. He coaches and manages a local youth track club in Montgomery. Through his coaching, Reggie mentors youth on the importance of discipline, having faith, and good academics. Being humble and having respect for others is a key component of his message.
Youth Male Athlete of the Year, Ashwin Revanna, Vestavia Hills, AL - age 13, has been competing in swimming for over 4 years. Ashwin has won over 15 medals competing in Alabama swim meets. Ashwin has also participated in the South Eastern Championship for both long and short course for the past 4 years. Along with competing in swimming meets, he also loves to give back by volunteering at meets or other community events.
Youth Female Athlete of the Year, Emma Tarokh, Athens, AL - age 10, has been competing in soccer since the age of 4. Emma played on the U12 Huntsville Futbol Club girls team and won 1st place and the gold at the 2017 Alabama State Games soccer tournament. She is an excellent example of an athlete who has dedicated her life to the sport of soccer. Emma excels in the classroom, as well. In addition to earning straight A's throughout elementary school, she qualified for the Duke Talent Program and was a recipient of the Newbery Reading award. The goals Emma has set for herself in soccer, in school and as a person should be examples for us all, and that is to always work hard and put forth your best effort with a positive attitude. When she grows up she would like to play soccer for team USA and become a dentist.
MORE ABOUT THE ATHLETE OF THE YEAR AWARD
The National Congress of State Games (NCSG), the governing body of all State Games programs, in an effort to recognize amateur youth and adult athletes and further the purposes of the State Games movement, presents an Athlete of the Year award for its member states to present to outstanding athletes. Following the annual Alabama State Games multi sport event, sports directors, coaches, athletes, parents, and volunteers have the opportunity to nominate athletes for the Athlete of the Year. Selections are based on sportsmanship, community involvement, academics, effort, attitude, overall athletic achievements, motivation and special attributes or circumstances. For more information about the Athlete of the Year award and those who received the honor, please visit ww.asffoundation.org/athlete-of-the-year