By Mark F. Gray, AFRO Staff Writer, [email protected]
The Pigskin Club of D.C. is synonymous with honoring excellence in athletics in the D.C. metropolitan area for more than eight decades. Most athletes and their supporters recognize the significance of winning the Club’s awards, which had traditionally been given after football season, to honor some of the top athletes in the D.M.V.
Under new leadership the area’s best spring and winter sports athletes will get their due when the Pigskin Club hosts its second Annual Spring Awards Banquet at First Baptist Church of Glenarden on June 1.
At its inception, the organization was noted for primarily honoring football athletes during its banquet earlier in the year.
With the Pigskin Club’s new President A.B. Williamson and Chairman of the Board Art Linder, the spring awards banquet brings gender equity to honoring interscholastic athletics.
“Their feedback has been excitement especially if the student-athlete has a friend or coach who has won a Pigskin Club Award,” Linder tells the AFRO. “It creates a bond between the players and coaches or the former winners.”
The list of previous honorees of Pigskin Club Honorees is a who’s who of local sports icons and all-time great athletes. Its inaugural class, featured AFRO sports editor Sam Lacy. Pro football Hall of Famers Art Monk, Darrell Green and Willie Wood joined other former members of the Washington NFL franchise Brig Owens. Legendary HBCU Coaches such as Dr. Charles Drew and Talmadge L. Hill are also among the honorees.
Boys and girls are now recognized for outstanding individual and team efforts during this celebration of local high school and college sports. The Pigskin Club will honor it’s “all-metropolitan teams in baseball, basketball, lacrosse, and softball. Special individual awards will be given to standout individual performers in golf, tennis and swimming. The athletes who will be honored are high school graduating seniors.
“We’re trying to include everybody so it’s important that we recognize women and girls who compete and contribute in sports,” said Wise high school basketball coach Lou Wilson. “What better place to do it than Prince George’s County.”
The 2019 Community Service Awards will honor two contributors who’ve made an impact over the past year in the sports and entertainment field who live in the District of Columbia and Prince George’s County.
Anita “Ma” Nance of Eastern High School has been a teacher in D.C. Public Schools for over 30 years. A former “DCPS Teacher of the Year,” Nance has been a tireless volunteer at Eastern who has also been an advocate for high school sports. She has raised over $190,000 for the Eastern athletic program in addition to her classroom responsibilities and throughout the school.
Filmmaker and playwright Jimmy Jenkins will be honored for his local contributions as well. Jenkins, who is the son Glenarden Baptist Pastor John Jenkins, is being honored due to a career producing a series of theatrical and film projects.
In March, Jenkins and his brother Joshua released their first feature film Sinners Wanted, which was screened at the church. This project took five years to make after Jenkins left his job at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta.
Coach, and noted sports talk radio host, Butch McAdams will host the banquet that begins at noon. McAdams hosts WOL-AM’s “In and Out of Sports” program which airs Sunday from 11am – 1pm.