The Southern League of Professional Baseball Clubs has announced Pensacola Blue Wahoos President Bruce Baldwin as the 2012 Jimmy Bragan Executive of the Year and Jacksonville Suns Director of Group Sales January Squyres as the league's Woman of Excellence. Votes for both awards were received from league general managers.
It is the second Southern League Executive of the Year Award for Baldwin, who also was honored while serving as General Manager of the Greenville Braves in 1984. That year, he was recognized by The Sporting News as its Baseball Executive of the Year.
Entering the 2012 season as the first president in Pensacola Blue Wahoos history, Baldwin oversaw the day-to-day operations of a club that led the Southern League in attendance with 328,147 - an average of over 4,800 per game - and was named by Ballpark Digest as its Organization of the Year.
Under Baldwin's leadership, the Blue Wahoos hit the ground running by recording a sellout in each of the first six games in franchise history. Picturesque Pensacola Bayfront Stadium, which was named Ballpark of the Year by Baseballparks.com, welcomed a sellout crowd 40 times in the Blue Wahoos' 68 openings.
Baldwin joined the Blue Wahoos on the heels of a 28-year career in the Atlanta Braves organization. He spent 27 of those years as a minor league general manager, primarily at the Triple-A level. In addition to being a two-time Southern League Executive of the Year, Baldwin was named International League Executive of the Year in 1989.
A native of Tupelo, MS, Squyres is the seventh different winner of the Southern League Woman of Excellence Award since its inception in 2004 and the first member of the Suns to be honored since Karlie Evatt in 2007. She will be the league's nominee for the Rawlings Woman of the Year, which will be presented at the Winter Meetings in December.
Beginning with Jacksonville as an intern in 2009, Squyres is in her current role for a second year. According to Suns General Manager Chris Peters, Jacksonville has experienced marked growth in group sales since Squyres' promotion prior to the 2011 campaign.
After majoring in Statistical Criminology at the University of Southern Miss, Squyres received her law degree from the Mississippi College of Law. She is bar certified in two states, including Florida.