Sports Doing Good Newsletter, #110

May 3 – 9, 2014

Welcome to week one hundred ten of the Sports Doing Good newsletter. This week’s first 10 stories include:

  1. 2nd Sports Management Summit: The Vision for Sports Business
  2. Kevin Durant’s powerful, emotional MVP acceptance speech
  3. David Wright makes baseball dream come true for double-amputee Mets fan
  4. Six Players, Six Countries, One Team
  5. Athlete’s Life: Warm welcome at ‘Shay Hostel’
  6. Beat The Streets Awards Gala Raises Record Of $1.6 Million For NYC Area Youth Wrestling, Education
  7. Meet Doc Wayne Youth Services, a 2014 Social Innovator
  8. For Legally Blind Pole Vaulter, the Sky’s the Limit
  9. How UVA’s Elite Women’s’ Rowing Team and Jack Jouett Middle School Strengthen Each Other Through Care
  10. Upcoming Event: Beyond Sport United (June 11, 2014 – NYC)

We have been asked numerous times what was the motivation to start Sports Doing Good and what keeps us going. Part of the answer has to do with the reality that many of the conversations taking place out there, whether those “conversations” are taking place in-person, online, in print, or on social media, are negative, and sometimes downright mean. They are focused on matters that at best don’t advance who we are as individuals and a society and at worst contribute to the fraying of the bonds that should be holding us together. Our goal? Help to “change the conversation.”

And a positive thread is definitely developing today in and around sports when it comes to highlighting efforts that amaze, inspire, educate and motivate us. We are seeing that thread in many of the same places that were seemingly inhabited by the negative. We are also experiencing this change at the various events, whether fundraising, celebratory, or thought-provoking in nature that are taking place now. We highlight two this week – the 2nd Sports Management Summit and the 2014 Beyond Sport United event – both happening soon in New York that we will be attending. We also include this week coverage of the very successful Beat the Streets event.

In addition to these events, we are happy to feature: NBA MVP Kevin Durant; NY Met David Wright and fan James Lozano; LIU-Brooklyn women’s golf team; champion runner Alicia Shay; non-profit Doc Wayne Youth Services; blind pole vaulter Charlotte Brown; Chicago Bear Kyle Long and friend Andrew Oyston; former Army Ranger and potential NFL player Alejandro Villanueva; pro golfer J.B. Holmes; and soccer coach Helena Costa; amongst others.

Please continue to send along your stories. You are both our audience and our best source of stories. Our Twitter handle is @sportsdoinggood, and you can find us at

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So enjoy. And have a good week.

2nd Sports Management Summit: The Vision for Sports Business: Europe vs. The Americas
IESE Business School in New York will be holding its 2nd Sports Management Industry Meeting on Monday, May 19, 2014 with the theme of: “The Vision for Sports Business: Europe vs. the Americas”. The full-day event holds panel discussions around sponsorships, media engagement and leagues with lively discussions from both European and American sports executives. This will be an opportunity for these two sides to engage, discuss, and share international opportunities, differing business models, and best practices. Speakers confirmed include Pau Gasol, LA Lakers NBA Player; Tracy Dolgin, CEO of the Yankees Entertainment & Sports Network; Bill Squadron, President of Bloomberg Sports; Didac Lee, FC Barcelona Board Member; and more.

Kevin Durant’s powerful, emotional MVP acceptance speech
Kevin Durant received an overwhelming 119 of 125 first-place votes to beat LeBron James and win his first NBA MVP trophy this season. Durant accepted the trophy Tuesday in the former roller skating rink the team used as a practice facility for a few years after moving from Seattle. Durant fought back tears as he thanked each of his teammates individually, and he had a special message for his mother, Wanda Pratt. Pratt got a standing ovation from the crowd after her son said that she was “the real MVP.”

David Wright makes baseball dream come true for double-amputee Mets fan
Great was an understatement for how Lozano felt Wednesday, when he and his mother, Gloria, and James’ uncle and friend first toured the Citi Field press box, the SNY broadcast booth and Empire Suite 213 over-looking the first-base line. When Lozano got down to the field and stood in the home dugout, he was presented with a signed Wright jersey which he quickly used to replace the Johan Santana Mets jersey he wore to the ball park. Lozano didn’t see the real No. 5 sneak into the dugout.

James Lozano gets to meet hero David Wright and take batting practice with the Mets captain. Robert Sabo/New York Daily News

Six Players, Six Countries, One Team
Of the Blackbirds’ six golfers, no two are from the same country. And their coach, the former L.I.U. star Natalie Desjardins, is from a seventh. “I tell them all the time that there’s no more important thing in life than to learn to adapt,” said Desjardins, who grew up in tiny Haileybury, Ontario, where her schooling was in French. “There’s no better place than this team to learn to adapt.”

None of the players on Long Island University Brooklyn women’s golf team, nor the team’s coach, are from the same country. Credit Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times

Athlete’s Life: Warm welcome at ‘Shay Hostel’
Her new life as a trail runner and the community she built in her home were recently featured in one of Dick’s Sporting Goods’ popular “What Do You Run For?” Web video series. Her three-and-a-half-minute clip has already collected more than 116,000 views. “An overwhelming amount of people from all over — locally, nationally and internationally — have reached out to encourage me to continue forward in my journey and struggles,” she said. “It’s been extremely humbling, eye-opening and encouraging to keep going.

Alicia Shay stands at the Grand Canyon after a training run. She opened her Flagstaff, Ariz., home to fellow elite runners who want to train at elevation and, in doing so, created a community of support when she needed one most.

Beat The Streets Awards Gala Raises Record Of $1.6 Million For NYC Area Youth Wrestling, Education
“This was a historic night, with great energy and enthusiasm in the center of the world, Times Square,” said Mike Novogratz, Beat The Streets Chairman. “But more importantly, that enthusiasm for the sport was reflected in the record amount the wrestling community raised, which will help Beat the Streets in its critical work of benefiting disadvantaged and at-risk youth through this great sport.”

Meet Doc Wayne Youth Services, a 2014 Social Innovator
Cohen continues, “You can talk to these kids until you’re blue in the face, but you put a ball in their hands and the clinician or the adult becomes coach, then the discussions can be that much more open and powerful.” On the court, Cohen is no longer the Executive Director and Roulier is no longer the clinician: they’re both coach. Suddenly, by putting themselves on a more equal level with the youth and uniting them through the common ground of sport, the kids are more likely to open up and be more receptive to receiving the help they might need.

For Legally Blind Pole Vaulter, the Sky’s the Limit
She said she’s losing what little sight she has but she’s not letting it hinder her dreams. “I think a disability is something that stops you or limits you from being able to do the things that you want to do,” Charlotte said. “This story isn’t about me. It’s about all people that struggle with something. I think everyone struggles with something in life. This was my something.”

Edyta Blaszczyk/AP Photo

How UVA’s Elite Women’s’ Rowing Team and Jack Jouett Middle School Strengthen Each Other Through Care
Teachers mention increased motivation, self-assurance, and greater classroom confidence and participation among other visible results of the program. “And these children are so proud of their rowers,” Ms. Kimberly Ann Gibson (7th grade Language Arts) told me. “Everyone wants a rower and our kids are now very curious about rowing, which they probably wouldn’t otherwise be exposed to.”

Upcoming Event: Beyond Sport United (June 11, 2014 – NYC)
Beyond Sport United is a unique annual event backed by Founding Supporters NBA, WNBA, NFL, NHL, MLB, and MLS. Held at Yankee Stadium, it brings together the largest global gathering of professional sports teams and leagues to address the business advantages of engaging in community and social issues. Now in its fourth year, Beyond Sport United 2014 will focus on the growing desire of the sport industry to better interact with a younger generation and the growing importance of digital and social media platforms. This full-day event will explore these interlocked themes and share cutting-edge digital approaches that can be maximized by sports teams to achieve shared value outcomes of youth engagement and social responsibility, as well as reaching new markets and fan bases.


PEAR Sports Announces Second Round Of Funding Of $5M
In speaking about the white label product, Bob Allison, PEAR’s co-founder and CEO stated, “With ‘Powered by PEAR’ we provide numerous brands, companies and many other verticals the opportunity to build a full customer engagement strategy around personal coaching and training. While using PEAR’s patented technologies to deliver a highly interactive training, coaching content platform and related hardware, these verticals have full control of the conversation with their customers.”

PEAR Sports – Worlds smartest training solution – real time heart-rate monitoring and audio coaching. (PRNewsFoto/PEAR Sports)

Johnson & Johnson Announces U.S. “Champions of Care” Program Finalists as Part of 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Sponsorship
Developed by Johnson & Johnson in support of its 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ sponsorship, the Champions of Care program invited individuals across the country to celebrate the most caring people in their lives and share their inspirational stories. From these stories, six finalists were selected and are profiled at Beginning today, the public will select the grand prize winner who will attend the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ final match in Rio de Janeiro on July 13.

How to put the fun back in youth sports
It doesn’t have to be that way, Friedlander says. It’s still possible to sign your child up for a sport just so he can get some exercise and learn how to be a good teammate. Ultimately, that’s what you should be looking for in a youth sports experience. “If you have a gut feeling that this is over the top, it probably is,” Friedlander said. “There’s a way to do it and make it work for everyone and give kids a positive experience and not cross that line into insanity.?.?.?.First and foremost, it’s about getting out there, having fun and learning a sport.”

Illustration by Owen Davey

Bears Lineman Kyle Long Hangs Out With Bullied Youngster At Chuck E. Cheese
Several weeks ago Frank Oyston, a Bears fan who lives in Huntley, Ill., reached out to Long to tell him that his 9-year-old son, Andrew, had been bullied on the school bus. Long told Oyston that he too had been bullied on the bus, and the 6-foot-5, 300-pounder even offered to ride along with Andrew. As it turned out, Long did Oyston one better than taking the bus with Andrew. Long came out to Andrew’s sister’s birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese and hit the arcade with the youngster.

Former Army Ranger Gets A Chance In The NFL
According to the Eagles’ release, Villanueva has earned a number of honors for his service, including the Bronze Star Medal for valor; the Ranger tab; the Parachutist Badge; the Bronze Star Medal for overseas service; National Defense Service Medal; Afghanistan Campaign Medal with campaign star; Global War on Terrorism Service Ribbon; NATO Medal; and Combat Infantryman’s Badge and Expert Infantryman’s Badge.

The 6-foot-9 Alejandro Villanueva played on the offensive and defensive lines and at receiver during his four-year career at Army. He was the team’s leading receiver during his senior season. Barbara Johnston/USA TODAY

J.B. Holmes completes comeback from two brain surgeries with Wells Fargo victory
It’s not just that he was ranked 242nd in the world entering Quail Hollow, or that it had been six years since he won. It’s that in the time since he last tasted glory, he’d had his brain operated on twice. We won’t even mention an ensuing elbow injury and broken ankle while rollerblading last year. Just focus on the guy coming back from brain surgery – pardon me, two brain surgeries – to beat back Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy, Jim Furyk and a cast of thousands to re-launch his career at age 32.–holmes-completes-comeback-from-two-brain-surgeries-with-wells-fargo-victory-041606887.html?soc_src=mediacontentstory

J.B. Holmes shot a 71 in the final round to win by a stroke. (AP)

A Foldable Bike Helmet You’ll Just Happen To Have In Your Bag
Woolf got nearly double his crowdfunding goal of $35,000 last year, and since then he’s been trying to perfect a thin, light, safe model. His current design folds to the size of a textbook and is 1.4 inches thick — small enough to tuck away in a laptop bag or stack in a vending machine near bike shares.

WICB partnership aims to boost US cricket development
Gladstone Dainty, USACA president, added: “This is a long-term strategy to help build the three foundations for a highly successful US cricketing market: high performance development, models for economic growth and modern day governance. Having the opportunity to work closely with another full member country offers exciting opportunities for US players looking to sharpen skills and experiences with world-class cricketers.”

Helena Costa Becomes First Female Soccer Coach Of French Professional League
Clermont hired Helena Costa on Wednesday, adding that “this nomination should help Clermont enter into a new era” and that she will work closely with developing the club’s youth team players. The 36-year-old Costa, who is Portuguese, previously worked with the youth set up at Benfica, and coached the women’s national teams of Qatar and Iran, as well as working as a scout for Scottish club Celtic.

Helena Costa, who previously served as the Women’s National Football Head Coach for Iran, became the first female coach of a French professional league this week.

College Football Playoff Announces Launch Of Extra Yard For Teachers
Extra Yard for Teachers will seek to support teachers through the development and implementation of programs in four key focus areas: direct provision of resources for expressed classroom needs, recognition of standout teachers, professional development and leadership training opportunities, and by providing vision and aspirations for future matriculation among grade-school students.

Quick Links…Our WebsiteMore About Us
Our goal is to have Sports Doing Good be a portal housing original content and excerpts from and links to the increasing number of articles, websites, video, and other media that showcase the good in sports and society. We aim to celebrate those concepts, activities, events, and individuals by highlighting them for a wider audience. Much of the news today, whether sports- related or not, is incredibly negative and increasingly polarizing, biased, and quite annoying. We are trying to refocus some of the discussion on the good, with a focus on sports.Our mission is to have Sport Doing Good be a consistent, and significant, contributor to the areas of sports, social responsibility and development. We look forwarding to partnering with other stakeholders in producing content, in creating and/or sponsoring athletic and service events, knowledge sharing, and conferences/seminars, and even having a commercial arm that could be the source of innovative social businesses.We invite you to send in news, press releases, and guest pieces for possible publication, and email us with suggestions about the content and format of the newsletter and Sports Doing Good website.
Contact InformationSarbjit “Sab” Singh