Marking another notch in an already well-worn belt of awards and recognitions, the Pensacola Blue Wahoos were recently chosen as the Southern League nominee for the John Henry Moss Community Service Award, a national recognition given to one Minor League ball club each year.
The award, in its inaugural year, will be given to "a club that has demonstrated an outstanding, on-going commitment to charitable service and has exhibited support and leadership within its local community and the baseball industry," according to a statement.
As the Southern League nominee for the award, the Pensacola Blue Wahoos will represent the league at the competition for the national award, facing off with 13 other domestic league representatives.
Donna Kirby, the Blue Wahoos director of community relations and promotions, believes the recognition was an honor for the entire Blue Wahoos program, from the owners and staff to the players to the fans.
"This is a great honor for the entire Wahoos Nation to be selected to represent the Southern League for this award," said Kirby. "Our owners, Quint and Rishy Studer, have set the standard for community involvement and charitable work, and that flows through our entire organization.
"From our players who wear different uniforms, wristbands and patches for charities, to our fans who are so generous and participate in dozens of fundraising efforts throughout the season, to our front office staff who are constantly looking for ways to help our community, we are grateful for the opportunity to represent the Southern League, the Pensacola area, and our wonderful fans in this competition for the John Henry Moss Community Service Award."
The John Henry Moss Community Service Award honors Moss for his dedication and charitable service to baseball and his community during his 50-year tenure as a league president. Moss founded the South Atlantic League and presided over it from 1959-2008. He died in 2009 at the age of 90.
Some of the criteria that will be used to choose the winning club include the community service involvement of players, staff and/or ownership, company policies or programs that promote volunteerism among the staff, club-sponsored charitable initiatives and programs, donations to local not-for-profit organizations and community groups, involvement with civic organizations, participation in league-wide initiatives and committees, support of MiLB Charity Partners and engagement with MiLB Charities, and support of baseball-related not-for profit organizations, among others.
The winner of the award will be announced at the Minor League Baseball Winter Meetings in December.